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Britain's Oldest Working Television For Sale

samzenpus posted more than 3 years ago | from the not-cable-ready dept.

Television 108

If you happen to be in London on April 19th you have a chance to own a piece of history. A Marconi type–702 television set, which was built using England's then secret radar research, is going up for auction at Bonhams Mechanical Music and Scientific Instruments sale. Built in 1936, the set is believed to be the oldest working television in Britain. From the article: "The machine was bought for almost £100 three weeks after television transmissions began. But Mr GB Davis of Dulwich, south–east London would have only been able to able to watch it for a few hours. The nearby Crystal Palace and its transmitter burned down three days after Mr Davis bought the Marconi type–702 set on November 26. The area could not receive pictures again until 1946."

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First TV ... (1)

Stooshie (993666) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721160)

.. perhaps

Re:First TV ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721240)

Until somebody finds or fixes an older one.

I'm curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721230)

How many HDMI ports does it have?

Re:I'm curious... (1)

next_ghost (1868792) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721368)

All you could use at the time it was built.

Re:I'm curious... (1)

neokushan (932374) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721602)

It had enough to meet the demands of the average 1936 television viewer.

Re:I'm curious... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721644)

None. But at least it didn't suffer from DRM.

Re:I'm curious... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722320)

It did. There was no recording equipment available, so television programs were by their very nature one-time-only.

Re:I'm curious... (1)

click2005 (921437) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722462)

The MPAA has sent a team of lawyers to the auction to ensure the set is not used and only for display. The lead attorney said "When considering any potential copyright infringement penalties we must remember that this equipment is able to receive entertainment on many frequencies, each of which could be used to transmit copyright infringing media. This set quite clearly shows that the analog hole is still used and needs to be closed".

Re:I'm curious... (1)

camperslo (704715) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722532)

Ah, but the picture was upside down! A carefully placed content-copying inversion decrypting device, ãfYãf©ãf¼, was used. (That's mirror in English)

At last... (1)

Addict7 (2024042) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721252)

a device I can use my Wii on without getting bleeding eyes!

Bleeding edge (3, Insightful)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721264)

"The nearby Crystal Palace and its transmitter burned down three days after Mr Davis bought the Marconi type–702 set on November 26. The area could not receive pictures again until 1946."

That, to me, is the definition of bleeding edge.

Re:Bleeding edge (1)

Joce640k (829181) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721890)

What did he manage to watch in those three days? Reruns of Baywatch and Little House on The Prairie...?

Re:Bleeding edge (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722260)

What did he manage to watch in those three days? Reruns of Baywatch and Little House on The Prairie...?

This was in Britain, you dolt. He was watching Benny Hill and Red Dwarf.

It looks quite modern (1)

Just_Say_Duhhh (1318603) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721294)

Rear projection (ok, bottom projection) and a flat screen (the mirror is flat, isn't it?). Next you're going to tell me it is high def!

Re:It looks quite modern (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721436)

it is high def... compared to 120 line, or even 30 line televisions...

Re:It looks quite modern (4, Informative)

spongman (182339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721716)

well, it was capable of receiving both the 240-line Baird and the 405-line EMI systems. so yes, in it's day it was high-def! [screenonline.org.uk]

Re:It looks quite modern (1)

quenda (644621) | more than 3 years ago | (#35727688)

well, it was capable of receiving both the 240-line Baird and the 405-line EMI systems. so yes, in it's day it was high-def! [screenonline.org.uk]

Both obsolete, so it really is not "Working" any more without 625-line ability.

Not quite. (3, Informative)

leathered (780018) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721316)

TV transmissions were moved to Alexandra Palace and continued up until the outbreak of war when there were almost 40,000 TV sets in London. Coverage was fairly widespread so I find it hard to believe that Mr Davis couldn't receive a picture in Dulwich.

Burned down transmitter? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721322)

The nearby Crystal Palace and its transmitter burned down three days after Mr Davis bought the Marconi type–702 set

With over the air down, he should have signed up for cable.

Re:Burned down transmitter? (3, Funny)

ShavedOrangutan (1930630) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721908)

With over the air down, he should have signed up for cable.

He's probably still on hold with Comcast.

Re:Burned down transmitter? (1)

robthebloke (1308483) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722176)

You've obviously never lived in the UK! A quick history:

In 1982, most of the country had 4 TV channels. About 15 years later, some parts of the country got a (really bad) 5th. That was never a problem though, because UK viewers only ever watched countdown, the news, and neighbours. More channels were never really wanted.

The biggest problem with cable (and sky) in the UK, has always been vorderman. Basically you'd get no more vorderman with cable than you would with terrestrial, so it wasn't worth the extra expense. Even after digital TV started broadcasting, the uptake remained slow, because again, no more vorderman for your money. Early on in digital TV broadcasting, ITV digital collapsed spectacularly, and it was only in the aftermath of the collapse that people realised how the vorderman effect worked. Sandwich in some vorderman in the ad break with some vague maths (insurance quotes, loans, anything really), and the channel would succeed. If you graph the number of digital TV viewers in the UK against the amount of vorderman exposure, there is a direct and striking correlation between the two...

Re:Burned down transmitter? (1)

Bicstor (1310419) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723238)

I am not sure if you are joking or not. Your logic seems sound and my own personal experience seems in agreement. Do you have a regular newsletter?

Re:Burned down transmitter? (1)

Dogtanian (588974) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723290)

In 1982, most of the country had 4 TV channels.

Well, the fourth only arrived at the end of 1982. I'm old enough- just- to remember when there were only 3 UK channels (damn, I'm old), and Channel 4 was a big deal to me.

You couldn't imagine anyone really giving a t**s about a new channel these days... partly because there are so many, but also because they're a bit of a muchness. There are God knows how many channels on Freeview, yet not one proper music channel, because the "music" channels discovered they get more viewers when they repeat years old non-music programmes that we've seen before anyway. I mean, we already have E4, did 4 Music really have to be part-sacrificed to become its ersatz second-rate sibling?

vorderman [..] vorderman [..] vorderman [etc.]

Not a big fan of the mercenary exploiter of her own "I'm brainy because I can do arithmetic" image then?

Re:Burned down transmitter? (1)

leathered (780018) | more than 3 years ago | (#35725316)

The problem was, and still is to some extent, that people were blinded by numbers. Televisions would be sold boasting 100 and even 200 vordermans per second (vps), when in reality most people couldn't tell the difference with a 50 vps set. All the time people were being told that high vorderman capability was the future when in reality it was a dead-end technology. I'm not usually an early adopter but when the first vorderman-free TVs came on the market I was first in line.

Mirror, Mirror! (1)

Gr33nJ3ll0 (1367543) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721330)

Interesting use of a mirror. So are the people correctly oriented because of this? (IIRC everything in TV land is reverse due to the camera recording)

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (1)

TheThiefMaster (992038) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721392)

That mirror will be performing a vertical flip, so I'd expect the picture to be the same way round horizontally as any other TV.

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (2)

spongman (182339) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721584)

vertical flip

wow, how does it know to do a vertical flip and not a horizontal one?

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (2)

ciderbrew (1860166) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721652)

It doesn't. You need an upside down concave or convex mirror depending on the hemisphere you are in. I can't remember which one was used and I can't find it on goggle. I guess the tv maintenance instructions are lost as no one has scanned a copy. If you find it let me know.

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (1)

hobo sapiens (893427) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722690)

"You need an upside down concave or convex mirror depending on the hemisphere you are in"

nice, lol!

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (3, Informative)

NixieBunny (859050) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721448)

You can make the people appear any which way you like, by reversing the leads to the deflection yoke.

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721760)

IIRC everything in TV land is reverse due to the camera recording

And that's why they have to replace every piece of text ever filmed with its mirror image so it looks right on screen. Or not.

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (1)

kevinmenzel (1403457) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721798)

You are wrong. Buy a camera. Use the camera. Notice how things are not horizontally flipped.

Re:Mirror, Mirror! (2)

daithesong (1124065) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722770)

Mirrors don't flip horizontally or vertically, jeepers. They flip 'inside out'. *We* flip people horizontally because it makes more sense for us to use their left-right symmetry, imagine that we are where the image is, and keep the image standing on its feet. Take a mirror you think of us being a 'horizontal flip' mirror and stand in front of it; yep, that looks horizontal. Now lie on the floor in front of it. Horizontal or vertical? It's *your mind* doing the flipping...

Doctor Who (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721338)

Am I the only one who read this and immediately thought of a Doctor Who episode? I can't recall the name, but I know it was a David Tennant episode. It was also his first season as he was still travelling with Rose Tyler. Come on, Slashdot! I know you guys know!

Re:Doctor Who (1)

Chas (5144) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721360)

Am I the only one who read this and immediately thought of a Doctor Who episode? I can't recall the name, but I know it was a David Tennant episode. It was also his first season as he was still travelling with Rose Tyler. Come on, Slashdot! I know you guys know!

Hungry! HUNGRY!

Re:Doctor Who (1)

frank_adrian314159 (469671) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721550)

It was titled "The Idiot's Lantern" - series 2, episode 7.

Re:Doctor Who (1)

Peet42 (904274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723022)

And it was dreadful, as every close-up of the "vintage" TV sets showed the RGB shadowmask of the colour monitors they had stuck inside them.

Re:Doctor Who (1)

Dexter Herbivore (1322345) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721404)

"The Idiot's Lantern" from the 2006 series is the one you're thinking of... and yes, I immediately thought of it too.

Re:Doctor Who (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721442)

that would be
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Idiot's_Lantern

Perhaps the oldest ELECTRONIC television... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721348)

There are MANY original mechanical sets that pre-date that.

Do they still work? (1)

DigitalReverend (901909) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721700)

Also I guess we have to define what it means to still be working. Did the UK make the conversion to all digital yet like the US, or are there still analog broadcasts?

If they haven't gone all digital, then it's possible that this set can still receive programming, whereas a set bought in the U.S. only a few years ago doesn't work without the addition of a converter box.

Re:Do they still work? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721838)

The article is about a 405 line television. It hasn't been able to receive programming since 1985.

Re:Do they still work? (1)

Retron (577778) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722808)

There are places that sell 625-line to 405-line converters online - so yes, in areas that still have analogue TV (including London) it'd be possible to receive over-the-air broadcasts on that set. Heck, get an oldish DTT box with an RF-out and you could daisy-chain that via a converter to watch modern digital terrestrial TV on it.

Not that you'd really want to, of course, but it could be done!

Re:Do they still work? (1)

Peet42 (904274) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723060)

I was just discussing this with a friend last night - apparently you can buy off-the-shelf Freeview (DTV) tuners that output 405 lines VHF, purely for keeping "vintage" televisions working. They're not easy to find, but they're out there.

Re:Do they still work? (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35724588)

If you can remember analogue video recorders (those things that took the big plastic boxes called "video tapes") then they would quite happily record 405 line or 625 line video. The lack of colour subcarrier was no problem (stick a black and white TV camera into a video recorder, and it'll be perfectly happy to record it) and since a single frame of video is recorded on each scan of the tape, it doesn't really matter how many lines are in it as long as you've got 50 of the per second.

I've actually got some old Philips N1700 tapes with 405-line Schools TV programmes from the late 1970s. Well, that's if they haven't all stuck together or gone foosty.

Re:Do they still work? (1)

digitig (1056110) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723334)

The UK still has analogue, but it's being phased out. The analogue isn't the same system as that set, though.

Re:Do they still work? (1)

dryeo (100693) | more than 3 years ago | (#35728368)

If you live close to the northern border you can pick up Canadian analog broadcasts. Perhaps the same in the south with Mexican broadcasts?

But... (1)

FormulaTroll (983794) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721354)

...does it come with 3D glasses?

Of course not! (1)

xMrFishx (1956084) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721740)

They cost extra.

Kewl! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721414)

I went to school in Dulwich (Dulwich College) back in the early 60's, and my sister lived there from the 70's into the 90's. A nice area to live, for sure! Anyway, given family history (we are natives of the USofA), the coincidence is interesting... :-)

Background, please? (1)

DriedClexler (814907) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721426)

What is a "television" in the first place? I'd heard about it from time to time -- mainly as something that old people watch, or that my parents used to talk about watching. One explanation I've gotten is that it's like "youtube with streaming-only, and a number of channels limited to the hundreds".

That must have been pretty boring.

Re:Background, please? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721568)

Your attempt at humor needs serious work. Very prosaic.

Re:Background, please? (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721666)

Dunno either, I flunked ancient history.

Re:Background, please? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722358)

Limited to the hundreds?

Man, what country are you in? Maybe you are thinking of something else... Television is about three or four channels. Maybe a dozen in some modern countries. In the UK it was two channels + 1 until the eighties IIRC (i mean eighties of the 20th century). In Italy it was three channels + some local ones.

Re:Background, please? (1)

Dachannien (617929) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723084)

Back in my day, we couldn't even participate in massive racist troll wars in the comments section, because there was no comments section.

Also, our version of rickrolling was to call someone on the phone and get them to change the channel to VH1.

Re:Background, please? (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723152)

What is a "television" in the first place?

What's needed is a definition of the word. Taking the word apart, into tele and vision, and comparing with known words should get us close. A telescope is something used to watch the neighbors have sex. A scope is used to see distant targets, so the tele part must be the bit about sex. So we can guess that the vision part of the word must make the definition sex vision. Fairly descriptive of what that box is usually used for.

Re:Background, please? (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723674)

It's like YouTube, but given that this is in the UK and not america, it's used to watch things called "programmes" instead of ads, and the viewing area isn't surrounded by hordes of drooling morons with their egos permanently rammed into the shift key.

It's unsurprising you might find it a bit strange.

Second television. (2)

LoyalOpposition (168041) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721512)

Yeah, that's why it was so much harder to invent the telephone. You can invent only one television if you want, but you have to simultaneously invent two telephones.

~Loyal

Re:Second television. (1)

Zoxed (676559) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722930)

> You can invent only one television if you want, but you have to simultaneously invent two telephones.

Ehh ? Not sure what you mean, but surely to 'invert' TV you also have to 'invent' the transmitter and the programming to be aired ?

Re:Second television. (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723176)

Actually that Baird's innovation. The receiver design is really fairly simple. essentially a spiral rotating in front of a perpendicular line to create a vertical scan. What was needed was a photosensor fast enough to do this for the transmitter.

Re:Second television. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35724348)

What a silly statement. You don't have to invent two telephones, you just have to *build* two telephones. What you have to invent is a speaker, a microphone and the system to transfer between the two. This is really simple compared to inventing a video camera and video display system, plus the method for encoding and transmitting the signals.

On TV ... (2)

Richard W.M. Jones (591125) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721590)

If you track down The Secret Life of Machines Series 1, The Television Set [youtube.com] you can see this sort of set (perhaps even this very set) being demonstrated.

AIUI you wouldn't want to turn this on for very long, or at least not without a fire extinguisher handy. Some of the electronics (capacitors I think?) are made of paper and after all this time have dried out and are prone to catching fire.

Rich.

Re:On TV ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721634)

The capacitors have abeen replaced where appropriate - this is a worker!

Re:On TV ... (1)

Opportunist (166417) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721684)

You mean, like, you could actually REPAIR TVs back then? Wow!

Re:On TV ... (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722394)

You mean, like, you could actually REPAIR TVs back then? Wow!

My father-in-law made a survivable living repairing TVs for most of his life. Even before the advent of flat screens and HD televisions, it got to the point where "repair" meant spending about as much as just buying a new television, simply because it was no longer a case of swapping out a capacitor or being able to replace some honkin' big TTL chip. He'd tell people that it didn't make sense to spend that much, yet some are set in their way of thinking and would still insist on having their existing set repaired.

I'm not sure that's a bad thing, really, since it is friendlier (relatively) to the planet - but I don't think most people nowadays would spend the same money just to maintain older tech versus getting the current gen.

Re:On TV ... (2)

Gordonjcp (186804) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721690)

It's worth pointing out that on theSecret Life of Machines website [secretlifeofmachines.com] it tell you that you are explicitly allowed to download copies from the Internet. It's worth getting all three series.

Re:On TV ... (1)

Ungrounded Lightning (62228) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723170)

Some of the electronics (capacitors I think?) are made of paper and after all this time have dried out and are prone to catching fire.

You're thinking of electrolytic capacitors. These have one plate made of rolled up metal foil, the other of a conductive liquid, and a thin insulator made as a coating on the metal plate by electrochemical reaction between the metal and chemicals in the liquid, driven by the applied voltage. They don't dry out unless the seals fail. Minor defects in the insulating coating are healed by the current through them.

They're used mainly for power supply filtering, where you need a LOT of capacitance in a reasonably-sized package.

The problem you have heard about is that, if the set is left unpowered for a couple decades, the insulating coating degrades. If it is then switched back on with normal supply voltage, the coating is too thin to resist the applied voltage. It breaks down, large current is drawn, the liquid boils, and the can ruptures, releasing a jet of stinky crud or possibly a small detonation.

The cure is to initially apply a LOW voltage to a decades-idle set for a few hours, ramping it up to normal volatge over a day or so. This rebuilds the insulating coating and things then operate normally. A "variac" variable transformer between the line cord and the wall power is the usual tool for this.

Ceramic capacitors and foil/waxed-paper capacitors don't have this breakdown mode. They'll survive long shutdowns just fine (unless roaches eat the waxed paper versions or the device is stored in extreme heat that melts the wax). Their main failure mode is insulation puncture due to overvoltage spikes. Carbon and metal resistors also survive long shutdowns just fine, with failures mainly from overheating due to other flaws putting too much current through them.

Re:On TV ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35725246)

If you track down The Secret Life of Machines Series 1, The Television Set [youtube.com] you can see this sort of set (perhaps even this very set) being demonstrated.

AIUI you wouldn't want to turn this on for very long, or at least not without a fire extinguisher handy. Some of the electronics (capacitors I think?) are made of paper and after all this time have dried out and are prone to catching fire.

Rich.

It's British electronics. It was prone to catching fire the moment it was first completed.

Q: Why do Brits drink warm beer?
A: Brits have Lucas refrigerators.

and GB is still broadcasting analog? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721720)

If not then this set will go blank again... somebody quick! Please make an arduino youtube-to-analogtv converter!

Re:and GB is still broadcasting analog? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722730)

This is a 405 line VHF receiver. It hasn't been able to receive broadcasts in Britain since 1985.

where do you put the penguin? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35721742)

I thought all respectable British tele's had a penguin perched on top of them. Or did at one time.

I don't think that is the oldest! (1)

morgauxo (974071) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721828)

That looks like a CRT. Surely there is a working mechanical TV left somewhere in Brittain. One of those could be something like 10 years or so older! Maybe that is the oldest which can receive PAL?

Re:I don't think that is the oldest! (1)

Rising Ape (1620461) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722044)

It doesn't do PAL - I think colour broadcasts at that time would be optimistic (OK, Baird did mechanical colour TV in 1928, and electronic in 1939).

It's the long-obsolete 405 line standard.

come on, my 701 is older (1)

georgesdev (1987622) | more than 3 years ago | (#35721860)

I've got a working 701. And I'm not selling it. Or your offer should be really high!!!

Re:come on, my 701 is older (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722128)

pics or it didn't happen.

Fixed prize for more than 50 years (1)

G3ckoG33k (647276) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722028)

The television is one of those products which has had a price of about £100 to £1000 for more than 50 years. It is cool to see that it applies to the Marconi type 702 too!

Re:Fixed prize for more than 50 years (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35727404)

Due to inflation the cost of the TV was actually closer to £5500 back in 1936. You can check here: http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/historic-inflation-calculator

The nominal price hasn't changed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35729512)

Of course! Yet, the nominal price hasn't changed, which makes the tv unique.

Irony (0)

Chemisor (97276) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722076)

Such irony that it is being sold at a time when TV is no longer worth watching.

Crime of Speculative Accumulation (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722086)

Recent regulations, in many USA and EU states, now make it illegal to keep a set like this. The definitions of "discarded" are being rewritten (if it is made of electronics, it cannot be resold unless "tested working" and cannot be stored for a period of more than one year) as a solution to various alleged "e-waste crises". (I parodied this law last April Fools day http://retroworks.blogspot.com/2011/03/vermont-sting-illegal-e-waste-robot.html and accept it's bad slashdottery to post references back to oneself, and accept the community's sentence of being modded down. But no kidding, we can now be fined or lose our license if we keep something like this for more than 365 days). This should make TV shows like "Pawn Stars" a lot less interesting in the future.

Re:Crime of Speculative Accumulation (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35726606)

You are full of shit.

Ob. geek (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722174)

>The nearby Crystal Palace and its transmitter burned down three days after Mr Davis bought the Marconi type–702 set on November 26.

Didn't I see that on Dr. Who?

Re:Ob. geek (2)

wrencherd (865833) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722620)

Didn't I see Dr. Who on that?

FTFY

Re:Ob. geek (1)

roc97007 (608802) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723104)

You are absolutely right.

Continuing the original thought, one of the problems of an American watching Dr. Who is that we don't get some of the more obscure British historical references.

Re:Ob. geek (1)

LizardKing (5245) | more than 3 years ago | (#35725810)

Not sure, but an episode of Dr Who was filmed at the Alexandra Palace transmitter.

rare? (1)

scharkalvin (72228) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722230)

"There are more 18th century Stradivarius violins in existence that pre-war TVs "
I think THAT is telling. Were there ANY television broadcasts in the US in 1936? I think there were some experimental stations in NYC, and maybe in LA but other than that.....

Re:rare? (1)

cpt kangarooski (3773) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723252)

There's a list of old stations here [wikimedia.org] . Apparently there were quite a few, although most of them seem to have been set up for mechanical tv sets.

Britain's Oldest Working Television Star For Sale (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35722376)

Cool I thought Patrick MacNee had retired.

tv tax? (1)

magarity (164372) | more than 3 years ago | (#35722928)

If you buy this as an antique do you still have to pay the tv tax?

Re:tv tax? (1)

SnarfQuest (469614) | more than 3 years ago | (#35723194)

Yes, and you'll also need to buy a tube based converter box to be able to watch HD content.

Re:tv tax? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35723922)

Yes of course you do, although only the cheaper black and white.
You don't think the government are going to pass up an opportunity to extract money from their subjects do you?

Re:tv tax? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35725024)

If by "tv tax" you mean the television license, then no.

A television licence is only required for equipment used for the reception of live television broadcasts.

This TV is an obsolete 405 line VHF set, there have been no signals for it to receive since 1985

Mortaaaaal Kombaaaaat (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35723304)

Sorry, will be too busy play Mortal Kombat on 4/19 to be there.

Finish Him!

Yeah but (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35726234)

Does it run Linux..

HEY COCKGOBLINS (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#35726638)

HEY COCKGOBLINS FIX IT SO I CAN CLICK LINKS IN COMMENTS AGAIN! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want! and don't try to tell me I can't use as many caps as I want!

I didn't realize (1)

xav_jones (612754) | more than 3 years ago | (#35727352)

that the Brits even made televisions. I thought they could never figure out how to make them leak oil. Thank you, I'm here all week!
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