From our humble beginnings in 1985, we can’t believe how the years have flown by and how much has happened. We couldn’t possibly show everything, but here is a brief history of products and events along the way and as in the beginning we are still equally passionate and excited as to what the future years will bring.

  • Brian O’Rourke standing at the doorway of Ruark Acoustics’ first unit in 1985


    Ruark Acoustics formed

    Using their savings, Brian O’Rourke and his son Alan rent a small unit on a private industrial estate in Rayleigh, Essex, as a workshop to develop and manufacture their first loudspeaker systems. Many hours are spent evolving the sound for which Ruark would ultimately become highly regarded by enthusiasts.

  • Brian O’Rourke standing at the doorway of Ruark Acoustics’ first unit in 1985


    Ruark Acoustics formed

    Mit ihren Ersparnissen mieten Brian O'Rourke und sein Sohn Alan eine kleine Einheit auf einem privaten Industriegelände in Rayleigh, Essex, als Werkstatt, um ihre ersten Lautsprechersysteme zu entwickeln und herzustellen. Viele Stunden werden damit verbracht, den Klang zu entwickeln, für den Ruark schließlich bei Enthusiasten hoch geschätzt wird.

  • Ruark Sabre and Ruark Broadsword


    Sabre and Broadsword launched

    After 14 months of development, Alan and Brian launch their first loudspeaker systems called Sabre and Broadsword. With beautiful cabinetwork and advance drive unit technology, these systems are soon noticed by the hi-fi press and receive critical acclaim.

  • Ruark Sabre and Ruark Broadsword


    Sabre and Broadsword launched

    Nach 14 Monaten Entwicklungszeit bringen Alan und Brian ihre ersten Lautsprechersysteme namens Sabre und Broadsword auf den Markt. Mit ihrem schönen Gehäuse und der fortschrittlichen Antriebstechnologie werden diese Systeme bald von der HiFi-Presse bemerkt und erhalten viel Lob von den Kritikern.

  • Ruark Accolade


    Accolade (worth the odd sacrifice)

    Boosted by the success of their Sabre and Broadsword models Alan and Brian release their first ‘flagship’ floor-standing model called ‘Accolade’. Costing over £2,500 and gaining rave reviews, this model establishes Ruark as a true ‘high-end’ loudspeaker manufacturer.

  • Neil Adams with the Ruark team in 1988


    Neil Adams joins Ruark

    With UK and export business growing Brian and Alan bring in Neil Adams (Brian’s son-in-law) to help oversee production. Neil’s managerial experience working with retail giant Sainsbury’s proves invaluable in making purchasing and production run smoothly.

  • Brian O’Rourke with Ruark Swordsman


    Ruark Swordsman released

    In response to demand from dealers for an ‘entry-level’ model, Brian and Alan develop the ‘Swordsman’ model. This model is well received and becomes a popular choice with customers new to hi-fi and building their first real hi-fi system.

  • Ruark Talisman


    Ruark Talisman 1

    Employing (at the time) a unique sloped baffle and cabinet construction, with an exquisite finish, many Hi-Fi enthusiasts will say that this is the model that defined Ruark. Its versatile nature made it a speaker that worked well with many different amplifiers and a remarkably large and sweet sound was produced from its compact stature.

  • Ruark Crusader


    Ruark Crusader 1

    Following the enthusiastic reception of Talisman, Crusader evolved. This was a development from Talisman for customers seeking a wider bandwidth. With a special domed mid-range unit the realism of sound on vocal pieces, in particular, was uncanny.

  • Ruark’s computer simulation setup in 1991


    Computer simulation comes to Ruark

    In the early 1990's Alan started using computer technology to aid development. This allowed drive unit, cabinet and crossover topology to be analysed before prototypes were made, although final tuning of systems was always done by ear. It was always Brian and Alan’s opinion that the ear is the finest development tool and this philosophy is still retained in every product that Ruark design and make today.

  • Ruark Templar


    Ruark Templar

    With demand for floor standing speakers growing, the Templar was developed as an entry-level floor-standing model. Despite its diminutive size customers and critics loved it, with a glowing 5-star review from What Hi-Fi? upon launch and a few months later an in-depth outstanding review from the highly respected Stereophile magazine from the USA.

  • Ruark Talisman II and Ruark Crusader II


    Talisman II and Crusader II

    Improving on the original Talisman and Crusader was a difficult task, however, with new drive unit technology and finely crafted cabinets with sculpted curves to give them the Ruark family look, the Mk2 versions of these speakers proved to be even more popular, with a leap in sales worldwide.

  • Ruark Equinox


    Ruark Equinox

    As a musician who had spent quite some time in recording studios, Alan was keen to develop a studio style monitor, a speaker revealing of the source and capable of real-life dynamics. With its high specification drive units, ultra-dense cabinet and dedicated stands with outboard crossovers, Equinox proved to be an instant hit and when used with matching ancillary equipment, was capable of truly jaw-dropping sound quality.

  • The Ruark factory in Southend on Sea


    Ruark move to new factory

    After 10 years and then operating from several units, the team at Ruark decide that it is time to move and to bring everything under one roof. With the future looking good, they choose to buy, rather than rent and secure a unit with room for expansion on a modern industrial site in Southend-on-Sea. Ruark still operate from these premises today although the unit next door has also been acquired due to ongoing growth.

  • Ruark Icon and Ruark Sceptre


    Ruark Icon and Sceptre launched

    To celebrate their move, Ruark introduce Icon and Sceptre as models to replace their now ageing Sabre and Swordsman models. With an inverted drive unit configuration, these models were considered quite unique and with their beautiful cabinets, considered two of the best looking bookshelf speakers available at the time.

  • Ruark Dialogue One


    Dialogue One Centre Channel

    In 1997 DVD is on the horizon and interest in Home Cinema is growing strongly with Dolby Pro-Logic VCRs and multi-channel audio/video amplifiers selling alongside traditional stereo components. Responding to demand Ruark launch their first dedicated home cinema centre channel speaker called Dialogue One. This is well received and is awarded ‘Best Centre Channel’ by Home Cinema Choice magazine in their yearly round-up.

  • Ruark Prologue One, Prelude, Epilogue and Log-Rhythm


    Prologue One, Prelude, Epilogue and Log-Rhythm

    With the arrival of DVD and flat-panel plasma TVs, home theatre in the late 90s really started to take off. In response to this Ruark develop and introduce their Contemporary Series which comprises a range of speakers which can be mixed and matched to create a stunning surround sound home theatre system. This system is manufactured for several years and in 2002 wins a coveted ‘Best Buy’ award from What Hi-Fi?

  • Ruark Vita 100 System


    Vita 100 System

    With home theatre becoming increasingly popular it soon becomes apparent that although many customers like the concept, not many have space for a full-size speaker package. In response to this Ruark introduce their Vita 100 system, which comprises five beautifully crafted small satellite speakers with a powerful subwoofer. With amazing sound quality from a compact package, this system proves to be an instant hit.

  • Brian O’Rourke on his retirement in 2000


    Brian O’Rourke Retires

    At the age of 70, Brian O’Rourke decides that it is time for him to step down as Managing Director and to spend some time relaxing with his wife, Jean. The position of Managing Director is taken by his son, Alan and Neil Adams (his son-in-law) becomes Operations Director. As always Brian keeps an active interest in the business he helped create until his sudden passing in 2002.

  • Ruark Excalibur


    The Mighty Excalibur

    It had always been a desire of Alan’s to design and build a speaker without compromise that was capable of real-life dynamics. A speaker that was able to create the full scale of an orchestra or band without compression or distortion. At over £8,000 per pair, the Excalibur became regarded by serious audiophiles as one of the most awesome speakers available and during production, nearly 300 pairs were sold worldwide.

  • Ruark Solstice


    Solstice rounds off Reference Series

    Such was the enthusiasm for Excalibur that many customers asked if a smaller model could be made. The result was a beautiful looking speaker called Solstice. At just over £4,000 UK retail this speaker was still aimed firmly at customers who took their audio seriously, but partnered with electronics of equal quality, the sound Solstice created was truly breathtaking.

  • Ruark CL Series


    CL Series (a new design)

    Come 2003 it is becoming clear that the audio scene is changing radically with more attention being focused on vision rather than sound. In response, the team at Ruark develop a range of speakers which are strikingly different from the usual look for which Ruark has become well known. Reaction from customers to the look is mixed, but as always the sound quality is highly regarded.

  • Concept drawing of Vita Audio R1


    A new direction

    With the traditional audio market facing an uncertain future, Alan decides that it would be a good idea to look at new avenues. With the BBC heavily promoting DAB radio in the UK, Alan was looking for a radio for his own use. It appeared to him that whilst sound quality was important for hi-fi, in radios the sound was often poor. Seeing a gap in the market a decision was made that Ruark should start developing a high-quality DAB digital radio.

  • Ruark Heritage series


    New Heritage Series

    With the CL Series not selling as well as expected a decision is made to renew and revive our Heritage models, namely Sabre, Talisman and Crusader. In Mk3 guise, these models keep the identity of the originals, but subtle styling changes and modern drive unit technology bring them bang up to date. All models are very well-reviewed but sales are still slower than expected due to a changing marketplace.

  • Vita Audio R1


    R1 launched

    In November 2006, we launch our first tabletop radio to critical acclaim, with the Sunday Telegraph calling it ‘The Aston Martin of DAB radios’. It is decided that we will sell and market the R1 under a different brand name – Vita Audio – in order to avoid confusion with our loudspeakers. In retrospect, this proves to be a decision that causes quite a bit of confusion with customers and dealers alike.

  • Vita Audio R2


    R2 launched

    Buoyed by the success of R1 the stereo R2 is launched. With its beautiful design and class-leading sound quality, the R2 proves to be a hit with customers and dealers who love its unique looks and quality construction.

  • Vita Audio R2 with What Hi-Fi? Product of the Year award


    R2 wins What Hi-Fi Product of the Year

    Having already received numerous accolades for R1 and R2, we are delighted in 2007 when our R2 is chosen as radio ‘Product of the Year’ by What Hi-Fi? Magazine at their annual awards. This highly sought after award adds gravitas to our reputation to design and build the very best small audio products.

  • Vita Audio R4


    R4 launched

    With our reputation growing in 2008 we launch our most ambitious product called R4. Using our design signature introduced with R1 and R2, our aim was to create a ‘one box’ stereo system, which we anticipated would have wide-ranging appeal. Our feelings proved to be correct because when press details were first released we were inundated with enquiries and now four years on sales of R4i are increasing all the time.

  • Vita Audio R2i


    R2i launched

    With our product reputation growing we introduce a new version of our R2 with integrated iPod dock, more power and other technical enhancements. Called R2i this product gathers many press accolades and proves popular with iPod/iPhone owners wanting a high-quality speaker system.

  • Vita Audio R2i with What Hi-Fi? Best Buy award


    R2i What Hi-Fi? Best Buy 2009

    On top of our previous awards, we are again delighted to be presented with a second trophy from What Hi-Fi? at their 2009 ceremony awarding R2i a ‘Best Buy’ for best desktop DAB.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk2 with CarryPack


    R1 Mk2 launched

    When first launched in 2006, the Sunday Telegraph described our R1 as ‘the Aston Martin of DAB radios’. With the introduction of our new R1, we created a successor which is further enhanced and even more desirable. The new R1 Mk2 can now also be made completely portable with the optional BackPack and CarryPack.

  • What Hi-Fi Best Buy Awards for R1 Mk2 and R2i


    What Hi-Fi Awards for R1 Mk2 and R2i

    In the Consumer Electronics trade What Hi-Fi Awards? are highly prized, so we are indeed honoured when again What Hi-Fi? present us with two more ‘Best Buy’ awards for our new R1 and R2i at their annual ceremony held at the Dorchester Hotel in London.

  • Ruark Audio R1 in Selfridges Yellow limited edition


    Limited edition ‘Selfridges Yellow’ R1 released

    With their beautiful design, many people describe our products as design icons of the future, so when the opportunity arose to produce a special limited edition of our R1 for London’s iconic department store Selfridges, in their eye-catching Pantone yellow we, of course, did not hesitate.

  • Ruark Audio R4i in Sparkling Graphite limited edition


    Limited edition Sparkling Graphite R4i

    Released in 2008, our R4 has now become recognised as one of the finest single box music systems available, admired as much for its beautiful design as its outstanding sound quality. In June 2011 we introduce an updated version with subtle technical enhancements called R4i. To celebrate the introduction of this model we also announce a special limited edition Sparkling Graphite finish.

  • What Hi-Fi? awards for R4i and R1


    Another What Hi-Fi? win for R1 and R4i

    The introduction of our R4i gathers yet more critical acclaim and is this year noticed by the team at What Hi-Fi? who award it ‘Best All-in-One Music System’ and R1 ‘Best DAB/FM Radio’! A fantastic finish to a fantastic year.

  • Close-up of Ruark Audio logo on R4


    Ruark Audio ‘a new era’

    In just five years we have achieved more than we ever imagined with our ‘small audio’ range. We initially chose to brand them Vita Audio in order to save confusion with our loudspeakers, but with our future plans laid out, we feel that the time is now right for all our products to be brought under one banner with the long heritage of our company name ‘Ruark’ attached.

  • Ruark Audio R1 in Nordoff Robbins Orange limited edition


    Nordoff Robbins Orange R1

    We are delighted to announce a long-term alliance with the inspirational national UK music charity Nordoff Robbins. Marking the start of the collaboration, a new version of our iconic R1 Mk2 radio finished in a luscious orange high gloss lacquer is released with a minimum of £15 from the sale of each unit will being donated to this highly worthy charity.

  • Ruark Audio Lightning Adapter Support installed on R2


    LAS (Lightning Adaptor Support)

    The introduction of Apple’s new Lightning connector causes much concern amongst customers concerned about compatibility. To help rectify this we developed a simple yet highly effective solution which we codename LAS (Lightning Adaptor Support). The beauty of this simple conversion is that iPod/iPhone models old and new can be used alongside each other.

  • Ruark Audio MR1 Bluetooth Speaker System


    MR1 – Real World Audio

    Leaning back to our roots, we use the skills from our loudspeaker past to squeeze the best performance from our MR1 compact Bluetooth active loudspeakers. The MR1s deliver our renowned sound quality without wires, thanks to Bluetooth and aptX technology.

  • What Hi-Fi? Best Desktop Speakers award for MR1 in 2013


    What Hi-Fi? ‘Best Desktop Speaker’ award for MR1

    All our radio products have won multiple awards, but we were particularly delighted when our MR1s received a prestigious What Hi-Fi? award for Best Desktop Speaker. Praise indeed from the leading title in audio.

  • Ruark Audio R7 High Fidelity Radiogram


    The radiogram redefined

    Inspired by 60s contemporary design, the R7 is our latest iconic piece. With stunning looks and amazing audio quality, it’s a revolutionary music centre in the true spirit of the classic radiogram.

  • What Hi-Fi? Best Desktop Speakers award for MR1 in 2014


    MR1 wins What Hi-Fi? award for second year running

    The only product we had entered for the 2014 Awards was our MR1 Bluetooth Wireless Speakers and we were delighted when for the second year running, we won the What HiFi? Award for the Best Desktop Speaker 2014.

  • Ruark Audio R7 AV Mount


    R7 AV Mount

    R7 redefines the classic radiogram, but with the addition of our new AV Mount, R7 is transformed from a music system into a complete audio/visual solution. Designed exclusively for R7, TVs and associated equipment can be integrated so they seemingly ‘float’ above and below R7, keeping its elegant design intact.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk3


    R1 Mk3 – design evolution

    Elegant and beautifully simple, the new R1 is the third generation of our iconic table radio which started the Ruark Audio story and marked our transition from manufacturing high-fidelity loudspeakers, to quality compact audio systems.

  • Ruark Audio R2 Mk3


    R2 Mk3 – Made for Music

    Whilst the R2 Mk3 gives the impression of being similar to its forerunners, through painstaking design, it has evolved so virtually everything about it is new. Notably, it incorporates technology that allows customers to access music and broadcasts in a variety of convenient ways.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk3 Osborne & Little limited edition


    Osborne & Little R1 Mk3

    In April 2015 we collaborated with iconic designers Osborne & Little for this limited edition R1 with an adaption of one of their designs called Melo. Quintessentially British and founded in the early 1960s, Osborne & Little have been producing award-winning fabrics and wallpapers ever since. Like ourselves, Osborne & Little have a reputation for innovation and exceptional quality and you will find their designs in the finest dwellings around the world.

  • Ruark Audio R4 Mk3 Integrated Music System


    R4 Mk3 Integrated Music System

    Originally launched in 2008 the R4 redefined what a quality compact music system should be. Seven years on we launch the Mk3 version to critical acclaim. Visually similar to the Mk1 and Mk2 versions, but enhanced in every respect, the R4 Mk3 is the perfect all in one’ music solution for 21st-century living. Ideal for modern day technophobes, simply plug in and within minutes R4 Mk3 provides room-filling sound that will satisfy even the most discerning listener.

  • Ruark Audio R2 Mk3 Streaming Music System


    R2 Mk3 awarded best ‘All-in-One’ music system

    In October 2015 we attended the lavish What Hi-Fi? award ceremony at the Hilton on Park Lane, London and were delighted to be presented a ‘Best Buy’ award for our recently launched R2 Mk3. This is the seventh year in a row that we have picked up a prestigious What-Hi-Fi? gong which is undoubtedly the most coveted award in our industry.

  • Ruark Audio R7 Pure Evil limited edition


    The ‘Art of Sound’ at the Saatchi Gallery

    In December 2015 we partnered with London-based graffiti artist Pure Evil to design limited-edition versions of our acclaimed R7. The first of these ‘one-off’ pieces was put on display at the artist’s exhibition, ‘Teenage Kicks’, at the prestigious Saatchi Gallery.

  • tl-2016-r1-swiss_red.jpg


    Swiss Red R1-30

    2016 marked a momentous year as we celebrated three decades of high fidelity sound and beautiful design. R1 was our first radio product so we thought it fitting to introduce a special edition version finished in ‘Swiss Red’ satin lacquer and with a polished 30th-anniversary plaque machined into the side.

  • Ruark Audio R4-30 in Satin Titanium finish


    Titanium R4-30

    As a second product to celebrate our 30th Anniversary we introduce R4-30 a stunning variation on our popular R4 Mk3 model. With subtle ‘aero’ curves and a special satin titanium finish, R4-30 is a fitting tribute to our 30th year and a collector’s item of the future.

  • Ruark Audio R7 Mk2 with Trusted Reviews award


    R7 Mk2 awarded ‘Home Audio Product of the Year’

    To round of our 30th year, we were delighted when Trusted Reviews selected or R7 Mk2 as their Home Audio Product of the Year. They said “The Ruark R7 Mk2 is a beautiful, wonderful-sounding all-in-one solution, and the fact that you can turn it into a TV stand and pump your TV’s audio through it broadens its appeal enormously. There really isn’t anything else quite like the R7.” ★★★★★

  • Ruark Audio MR1 Mk2 Bluetooth Speaker System


    MR1 Mk2 – design conscious sound

    Since its introduction in 2013, our MR1 Bluetooth Speaker System has been widely commended as the finest available. MR1 Mk2 retains all the attributes of the original, but with our ongoing desire for improvement, they now look and sound better than ever!

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk3 in Sea Green finish


    Limited edition Sea Green R1

    The beautiful blue-green matte colour was inspired by the tranquil blues and deep-sea corals found in our planet’s beautiful oceans and the run of just 1,000 pieces made it highly desirable. Designed to add a vibrant and fresh feel to any bedside table or kitchen worktop, bringing the warmth and feel of summer days to the long dark days of winter.

  • Ruark Audio R7 High Fidelity Radiogram


    R7 Mk3 - the radiogram refined

    In 2017 we release an all-new version of our groundbreaking R7 High Fidelity Radiogram. With honed aesthetics, improved analogue circuitry and the latest digital technologies for streaming and multi-room, R7 Mk3 is a sound system that will satisfy even the most discerning listener and builds further on the success of our original.

  • Ruark Audio MRx Connected Wireless Speaker


    MRx – Connected Wireless Speaker

    It is early 2018 and we are delighted to announce the release of our first ‘smart’ loudspeaker system. MRx is a wireless speaker system, that will enhance environments with its design and entertain with its sound. Capable of filling a single room or whole home, MRx is designed without compromise and built to last.​

  • Ruark Audio MRx with Trusted Reviews award for Home Audio Product of the Year


    MRx wins Trusted Reviews ‘Home Product of the Year’

    Shortly after its launch, our MRx is awarded ‘Home Audio Product of the Year’ by the highly regarded Trusted Reviews team. They loved its design, sound quality and ease of use.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk3 in Burnt Saffron and Wild Plum finishes


    R1 – Burnt Saffron and Wild Plum

    Inspired by the vibrant colours of autumn, our limited edition R1s for 2018 are Burnt Saffron and Wild Plum. Both finishes capture the aura of the season, with a nod to the changing landscapes, berries and leaves on the ground, the sort one might see during an autumn countryside walk.

  • Ruark Audio MR1 Bluetooth Speaker System with What Hi-Fi Award


    MR1 wins What Hi-Fi Best Buy

    ​For the 5th year running our MR1s are awarded ‘Best Desktop Speaker’ at the What Hi-Fi? awards 2018. They say that for their size and cost, there is simply nothing better. We couldn’t agree more.

  • John Lewis ‘The Summer of Sound’ event


    Summer of Sound

    In 2018 Ruark we opened the doors to our very own rooftop Sound Studio atop of John Lewis’s flagship Oxford Street store as part of their experiential project ‘The Summer of Sound’. The whole event was inspired by the capital’s love of music and sound with the Oxford Street store’s rooftop transformed into a mini-festival featuring live gigs, DJ sets and acoustic performances against the breath-taking backdrop of the city’s skyline.

  • Ruark Linley Tempo Radio


    Ruark × LINLEY Tempo Radio

    David Linley started to design and sell bespoke furniture to private clients in 1982. Today LINLEY is world-renowned for the exquisite products they produce. When asked if we would like to work with them to produce an exclusive radio for their customers we were delighted and so the Tempo Radio was born.

  • Ruark Audio R5 High Fidelity Music System


    R5 High Fidelity Music System

    It is 2019 and it is with great pleasure that we proudly announce the release of our R5 High Fidelity Music System. Incorporating the knowledge of our past with a vision of our future, R5 is the perfect ‘all-in-one’ system for music and design enthusiasts alike.

  • Ruark Audio R3 Wireless Music System


    R3 Wireless Music System

    R3 is introduced to fill the void left by left by our R2 Mk3 and R4 Mk3 models and proves an instant hit with our customers. Slightly smaller than R4, but with many features carried over from our award-winning R5, R3 is perfect for customers where space is tight but the best possible sound is required.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Mk4 Deluxe Bluetooth Radio


    R1 Mk4 – 14 years in the making

    In 1986 we launched our first-generation R1 radio and 14 years later we are pleased to announce the launch of our fourth-generation model. Everyone deserves good design and sound in their lives and like the original, R1 Mk4 is even more in-tune with what discerning customers are seeking today.

  • Ruark Audio MR1 Bluetooth Speaker System with What Hi-Fi Award


    MR1 wins What Hi-Fi Best Buy award again!

    For the 7th consecutive year, our MR1s are bestowed ‘Best Desktop Speaker’ at the 2020 What Hi-Fi awards. As we’ve always said, good design and quality creates products that are timeless and built to last and MR1 is a testament to this fact.

  • Ruark Linley Amplis Audio System


    Ruark × LINLEY Amplis Audio System

    Following the success of the Ruark × LINLEY Tempo Radio, we are delighted to announce another collaboration with LINLEY this time based around our R5 High Fidelity Music System. Hand-crafted in the UK, the Amplis Audio System combines beautiful LINLEY cabinetry with our renowned sound and technology, making it a truly unique product.

  • Ruark Audio R1 Beach Hut Blue


    R1 Beach Hut Blue

    With summer firmly in mind, this eye-catching limited edition is aptly named ‘Beach Hut Blue.’ R1 Beach Hut Blue is a perfect ‘feel good’ addition for any home that will bring memories of summer and great entertainment all year round.