Consumer electronics events, products, history & dates
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Dates are confirmed using a number of sources.
Baird (UK) invents the first Television system in January 1926.
It used a mechanical optical scanning system.
Co-incidentally our 1st vintage publication is "Successful Wireless Reception
Fairclough (USA) invents the first fully electronic Television system in September 1927.
He developed the electron scanning system and the cathode ray tube.
The start of television transmissions from Alexandra Palace in London.
First major electronic television outside broadcast: the Coronation of King George VI.
Nine thousand tv sets are sold in the London area.
Television transmissions are suspended during the Second World War. An estimated
20,000 tv sets in Britain at this time. They resume in 1946 on the 7th June
On the 23rd of December 1941 "Baird" gives first demonstration of 600-line electronic
stereoscopic television in colour.
The world first electronic computer -"Colossus". Design started in March 1943 and the first unit was
operational at Bletchley Park (50 miles to the North West of London) in Jan 1944.
The switches consisted of a large number of thermionic valves (tubes.)
It was used to crack the German codes in the last two years of the Second World War.
The 2 inch reel to reel video system was introduced. The first commercially sold machines
were the Ampex VR-1000 and the RCA TRT-1A. Both used the same agreed upon
format - the 2" Quadruplex system. The format utilized 2 inch wide tape loaded on a
monstrous 4800 ft reel.
Videotape recording starts in Britain. Prior to this date the only way to record programmes
was to use film. This was called "telerecording".
1 inch Machtronics reel to reel video system introduced.
On the 11th of July 1962 is the first transatlantic satellite link via the "Telstar" satellite.
Philips demonstrated the first compact audio cassette using high-quality
BASF polyester 1/8-inch tape that ran at 1-7/8 ips
introduce the first domestic reel to reel video and TV combined unit weighing
900 pounds and costing $30,000 in a wood cabinet 13 feet long! It used 1 inch tape.
It was available from a retail catalogue.
The Philips EL 3400
was the first stand-alone, 1 inch tape, domestic video
The Ampex VR-5003
was the first professional, 1-inch tape, reel to reel video
Sony claim the first video tape recorder for home use was their 1/2-inch tape CV-
including the CV-2000D, the CV-2010
and the CV-
. Only about 200 were sold in 1965.
The Sony CVC-2000
was the first 1/2-inch tape domestic video camera.
Colour TV started in 1967 (using the PAL system) with BBC2 and extended to BBC1 and ITV in 1969
but it was into the mid 70s before colour sets were more widely found in the home.
Sony introduces the world's first portable VTR (1/2 inch reel to reel), the DV-2400.
It was available
with a camera and power supply. It was followed a couple years later by the popular DV-3600.
The first really domestic reel to reel video recorder for the home was arguably the Philips LDL
It used 1/2 inch tape. It had a similar size and weight to an average audio reel to reel recorder.
It was in a domestic wood enclosure and was marketed for the home in the Philips marketing leaflets.
Four host computers were connected together into the initial "ARPANET" and the Internet was born
Akai introduce the worlds 1st 1/4-inch format reel to reel recording system with the VT-
& Vt-110 VTR'S
Sanyo introduce one of the 1st ever hand-held calculators. The Sanyo ICC-
3/4 inch reel to reel video system introduced.
Sony introduce the U-MATIC
video recording system using 3/4 inch tape cassettes.
The units were the VP-1000
player and the VO-1600
VCR. The VO-1600
was the worlds first VCR.
Philips introduced the worlds first video cassette recorder for use in the home.
colour VCR has an analogue clock - timer and embedded TV tuner. Price £442 weight 17 Kg.
Philips introduced the N1501
colour VCR. A face-lifted N1500 with improved colour circuitry
and still frame.
Still with an analogue clock, looked almost the same but black sides instead of wood finish.
Possibly even less made than the N1500. Very rare.
Sony introduce the Umatic VO-3800
The worlds 1st portable video cassette recorder.
Sony introduce the first popular video recording system. The Betamax LV-1901
and in 1976 the SL-7200 and SL-7200A
The first stand-alone Betamax
unit to be introduced into the United States was the SL 7200 and SL-7200A
This reached the UK in 1978
Philips introduce the N1502
colour video cassette recorder. Price £649 weight 18 Kg. Digital
JVC introduce VHS, to become the world's most popular video recording systems. The JVC HR-3300
first VHS recorder.
Panasonic also introduce thier 1st VHS recorder, (VHS become the world's most popular video recording systems).
The Panasonic VBT200. A version of the VBT200, the NV 8600
is introduced into the UK in 1978.
Of course JVC and Panasonic are the same company - MATSUSHITA! The Panasonic is better built and has a
better picture. Compared to the JVC (The JVC was produced in very large quantities), the Panasonic is quite rare.
Philips introduced the N1700
colour video cassette recorder.
The long-play version of the original Philips N1500 series. Digital clock.
Sony introduce the SL-8200.
This was the first Betamax to have two recording speeds.
The new 1/2 speed capability provided 2 hours recording time on the new L-500 Beta videocassette.
Sony introduce the SLO-340.
This was the first Betamax portable video cassette recorder.
The worlds first "real" desktop computer. The Commodore PET 2001.
Mainly used in
schools and colleges.
The Panasonic NV 8600.
VHS recorder reached the UK at the same time as the JVC HR-3300.
became available in December 1978, and must therefore share the distinction of being the first UK
VHS decks. A number of companies clone it under their own brand names including the
Ferguson Videostar 8922
and the Baird 8922
in the UK.
JVC introduce the first portable VHS recorder. The JVC HR-4100 EG
and Ferguson introduce the 3V01
Sony introduce "Betamax 2" (half the speed)
The introduction of the double speed VHS system
The worlds first domestic computer Priced under $200.00 appeared in 1980. The Sinclair ZX-
Brother introduce the 1st ever electronic typewriter. The Brother EP-20
The first compact video cassette system. The Technicolor 212E.
This little known CVC system used
1/4 inch tape in a small cassette format. It was 4 years before VHS C and 5 years before Video 8.
The first computer to be priced under $100.00 appeared in 1981. The Sinclair ZX-
1981 (or 1978?)
Philips introduced the Video 2000
IBM launch of the industry standard personal computer. The IBM 5150.
Philips launch the first Laservision player in the UK, the VLP 700.
JCV introduce the fist VHSC (compact) VCR. The HS-3C.
Grundig introduced the reversible version of the Video 2000, the 2x8
The worlds first hand portable cell phone. The Motorola 8000x
at 28 oz. The Motorola DynaTAC
phone became the first FCC-approved portable cellular telephone in 1983. Price $3,995
The UK model was the 8500.
Sony introduced the full size Betamax camcorder. The Sony BMC100P
The first unit to have the video recorder and camera in one unit.
JVC introduce the first compact (VHS-C) version of the VHS system and the GR-C1.
Sony introduced the final Super-Beta system
A group of manufacturers started to produce the agreed video standard called Video 8
Panasonic introduce the worlds first full size VHS cassette camcorder. The Panasonic
The first book sized 8mm video camera. The Sony CCD-M8
The first domestic satellite receivers
home arrived in the shops.
JVC follow the GR-C1 with the GR-C7.
In 1986 it is the world's smallest and lightest VHS-C
JVC Introduced the HR-S7000, the world's first S-VHS video recorder
Panasonic claim they introduced the SVHS recording system in 1988 but the
parent company own Panasonic and JVC!
Motorola introduce the worlds first "flip" phone. The Motorola MicroTAC
Motorola introduce the worlds first Tr-band phone. The Motorola Timeport
The first GSM cell phone was the Nokia 1011. The first manufacturer to launch
a series of hand-portable phones for all digital standards (GSM, TDMA, PCN, Japan Digital).
It was also cloned by a number of other companies including Philips.