Back in 1968 when this advert appeared in Melody Maker, stereo was still a pricey upgrade for most pop music fans, and many were playing records on older mono record players even though the stereo format had been around for a decade by this time. And this worked OK given the tiny speakers. But BSR here were trying to educate people into upgrading to a stereo cartridge, as this would read stereo discs better and improve the sound. The advert is typical of the era, especially the illustration of the dolly girl with the elaborate hair do. But as the cartridge was going to cost the best part of two quid I doubt many could afford it. I know I played my early stereo album purchases on a mono player, the Fidelity HF43, and doubt it would have made much difference. Instead, I used to sneak in and use my Dad’s modest Sony stereo deck when he was out!
The Fidelity was a smashing looking machine though, probably launched in the late 60s (I got mine around 1970), and identical to this photo (above) I found online. To stop arguments my brother also got one, in the alternative grey colour scheme. The case was thick solid plastic, as was the lid, so they were very robust.
To my regret we both got rid of them later when we upgraded, but found replacements in junk shops since. As one has just been auctioned for over £100 I will look after it better!
Thanks to Tonny Steenhagen for the advert scan.