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Communication Electronics, Inc

Bethesda and Rockville, Maryland

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CEI Related History

Communication Electronics, Inc (CEI)

Where the surveillance receiver division of Watkins-Johnson started.

RS-111 front
The RS-111 receiver

Probably the most famous surveillance radio ever made
because its role in the Watergate wiretapping.


Regco was started by CEI founder, Ralph Grimm, after he
became fed up with how WJ was running his former company.
Very scarce equipment probably produced in small numbers.

Ling Temco Voight (LTV)

LTV made airplanes and modified airplanes to be aerial surveillance platforms. They contratcted with Nems-Clarke, CEI, WJ, Collins and other radio manufacturers for custom equipment designed to mount in their consoles. They became E-Systems and continued to use WJ radios under the new name.

Clarke Instruments

Allen Clarke gave Ralph Grimm his first job.
Grimm left Nems-Clarke to found CEI.

Allen Clarke also gave Miller Reddin his first job.
Reddin co-founded the receiver division of General Electronics Laboratories and cofounded Defense Electronics, Inc


Nems-Clarke has a long history in radio going back to at least 1909. They specialized in telemetry receivers for early satellite and missile reception. Several of the companies that made Black Radios were founded by former employees of Nems-Clarke.