Museum of early consumer electronics and 1st achievements
With a domain name of www.rewindmuseum.com
presenting the first ever
domestic video cassette recorder makes this is a very important page. Hope you find it interesting.
The Philips N1500. 1972
The Philips N1500 VCR with analogue clock from 1972.
Everyone agrees that this was the first domestic cassette recorder. Since it also
had a built in TV tuner and a timer perhaps we should also consider it for the overall
title of first domestic, consumer video recorder? The Sony Umatic video cassette system came
out a year earlier in 1971 but really only became popular in the professional broadcast market.
The Umatic cassettes were large as they used 3/4 inch tape, recorders were large, heavy and very
expensive. There was little domestic marketing. Although the Philips n1500 came out a year
after Umatic and was therefore not the first video cassette recorder, it was, however, the first
domestic video cassette recorder and was fully marketed as a domestic product. The brochure also
shows marketing in schools and in businesses as a presentation machine. Whilst they did indeed
arrive in homes in reasonable numbers for their day, they were used in schools extensively.
We have a Philips n1500 in our museum and it is in excellent condition. There is also an
owners manual, a manufacturers brochure and a Philips 1500 head cleaning kit.
Update May 2007. We now have two Philips N1500s in the museum, both in excellent condition.
Philips N1500 manual / instruments & spares
Vintage "Television" magazine 1975
Featuring the Philips N1500 video recorder. See this magazine in more detail on our vintage publications pages
A fully boxed Philips N1500
A Philips n1500 complete with all of the manufacturers packaging.
This unit belonged to a Mr. Ronald Barlow. He was the type of person that always bought new technology
when it was first introduced. This often resulted in buying a system which soon became obsolete.
In the VCR format wars, VHS eventually won and became the domestic recording standard.
Ronald sadly died in 2010 and this n1500 was donated by his son-in-law.
There are some more pictures from the manual below and a letter from Philips detailing prices.
The Philips V100 camera.
The Philips VCRs would have been used with this camera.
See more pictures and more information about this camera on our vintage video cameras
RRC Model 8201. (Philips clone) 1974 approx.
Radio Rentals Contracts 8201 VCR. (this is very similar to the Philips N1520)
Manufactured by Philips for Radio Rentals in the UK. This is a rare machine as
the 1500 range of VCRs were sold all over the world but this model was only
sold to one company in the UK. It looks almost the same as a Philips N1520
Radio Rentals was part of Thorn Consumer Electronics limited.
It is difficult to date this product but a code on the back of the
service manual of 1174E could be referring to 1974. This would seem to be
about right but there are some small differences which will be detailed here soon.
The unit is in good condition and even includes an RRC 8201 service manual.
The Model 8201, like the Philips 1520 had no TV tuner. It was a record and playback VCR
with line in / out and camera and mike inputs. Their was no UHF output (no modulator)
like those fitted to the "domestic" versions (N1500, N1700 etc.)
The Philips VR2020 and VR2023.
These are Philips 2000 system units. They were well ahead of the VHS and Betamax rivals at the time in many respects.
They offered cue and review picture search without noise bars. The tape lasted a full 4 hours and could be turned
over for another 4 hours just like an audio tape. The problem was that it was yet another Philips system. Manufacturers
these days have learnt that new systems need to be backwards compatible. None of the tapes from the earlier
Philips 1500 or 1700 systems could be used on these 2000 system recorders. The public were sick of too many video
recording systems. They wanted a systems that everyone used and where pre-recorded tapes were easily available from
the shops or rental outlets. This was one of the reasons why VHS won through and other systems became obsolete.
We also have,
An original brochure for Philips Video 2000 Equipment. Dated 1983, it is A4 size and has 18 pages.
Featured are: Cameras VK 4100, VK 4032. Recorders VR 2220, VR 2324, VR 2334, Tapes and Accessories.
Philips N1500 library pictures.
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