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"In 1936, the BBC was the only channel available so there isn't a channel changer on the set."
June 24, 2010 4:11 PM   Subscribe

Scientists uncover UK's oldest working television!

The set, a 1936 Marconiphone 702, was discovered as a result of a contest put on by Digital UK, currently running the four year switchover to digital television. Their press release assures television watchers that even it is "ready for the digital age" [pdf] The set was one of four introduced at the 1936 Radiolypmia exhibition (which was nearly sabotaged!) two months before the BBC (finally) began television service on November 2, 1936. Check out other early TVs at the TV History website Pre-1935, 1935-41 or at the vintage television museum.
posted by jessamyn (29 comments total) 15 users marked this as a favorite

 
Does it pick up the Dumont network?
posted by jonmc at 4:15 PM on June 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Anything good on?
posted by fuq at 4:19 PM on June 24, 2010


I bet the remote is powered by steam.

And my mom still can't figure it out.
posted by bondcliff at 4:22 PM on June 24, 2010


Anything good on?

If it can tune in BBC Two, there's something good on this Sunday.
posted by The World Famous at 4:23 PM on June 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


> Anything good on?

Just cheese or snow.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:26 PM on June 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


Does he have a licence for that?
posted by Jimbob at 4:27 PM on June 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


Oh, wait...make that cheese or snow.
posted by The Card Cheat at 4:30 PM on June 24, 2010


I HAVE A NATIONAL MICROWAVE OVEN BOUGHT ON 14TH NOVEMBER 1982 WHICH IS STILL IN DAILY USE AND APPEARS TO BE IN NEW CONDITION

I love this comment for some reason.
My grandmothers both had microwaves from about 1980 that lasted into the late 2000's. One had an analog dial.
posted by Countess Elena at 4:33 PM on June 24, 2010


Is this something I'd have to have a...oh, never mind.
posted by cjorgensen at 4:34 PM on June 24, 2010


This is just great, I love things like this.
posted by MaryDellamorte at 4:34 PM on June 24, 2010


I HAVE A NATIONAL MICROWAVE OVEN

The comments are so totally the best part. The last one: "My Mother who, at 87 years old still works very well"
posted by jessamyn at 4:38 PM on June 24, 2010 [2 favorites]


the comments on that article are hilarious.
posted by delmoi at 4:41 PM on June 24, 2010


WHEN THE NATIONAL MICROWAVE OVEN FINALLY EXPIRES THE QUEEN WILL BE REDUCED TO JIFFY-POP AND SHE WON'T BE ABLE TO KEEP ALL THE CROWS ON THE TOWER AND THE MONARCHY WILL END AND ALSO THERE WILL BE CAKE.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 4:52 PM on June 24, 2010


Oldest appliance in our house? Husbandi Domesticari...unit brief indicates that unit should be capable of working alone. Is marginally self-starting, needs verbal initiative on occasions. All parts still functioning. Tends to leave additional bits around the house during work periods. Is not self-cleaning. R Wells, Lichfield, Staffordshire

I could actually describe myself as "marginally self-starting, needs verbal initiative on occasions."
posted by jeanmari at 4:53 PM on June 24, 2010


Wow. I can definitely imagining the neighbours gathering for that.

And I love that the only broadcast available was 2 hours a day.
posted by Durn Bronzefist at 5:34 PM on June 24, 2010


I bet the remote is powered by steam.

It's just like those steampunkers to invent time travel...
posted by Rhomboid at 6:07 PM on June 24, 2010


I am enchanted by the idea of this Radiolympia Show and found this article about the 1936 event in the New Scientist.
posted by jessamyn at 6:08 PM on June 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


awesome
posted by rosswald at 6:27 PM on June 24, 2010


The first in a series of tubes.
posted by Tube at 6:55 PM on June 24, 2010


There's a probably apocryphal story that when WWII began BBC-TV was taken off the air, and literally went dark in the middle of a Mickey Mouse cartoon. And the moment the war ended, they fired 'er back up and finished the cartoon.
posted by evilcolonel at 7:07 PM on June 24, 2010


So is it able to pick up "Nosin' Aroun'"?
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:06 PM on June 24, 2010 [1 favorite]


YES WE HAVE A BLOODY VIDEO!!!
posted by Senor Cardgage at 8:14 PM on June 24, 2010 [3 favorites]


I HAVE A NATIONAL MICROWAVE OVEN BOUGHT ON 14TH NOVEMBER 1982 WHICH IS STILL IN DAILY USE AND APPEARS TO BE IN NEW CONDITION... AND I STILL CAN'T GET A PICTURE ON THE DAMN THING
posted by the noob at 11:08 PM on June 24, 2010


YES WE HAVE A BLOODY VIDEO!!!

Laughing at that made me feel old.

Agreed that the comments section was a riot. I'm glad it wasn't just me. My 5c:

*Bought a middle of the range stereo about 1995.
*It started going wonky about 2006.
*Took it to a family friend, back yard electrical repair dude.

And he's all "Woah! Old skool. Metal casing." It never occurred to me that middle of the range stereos were all faux metal, and mine was probably close to the last of its kind.

But I was more taken aback that something I thought that was still current technology and [untill recently] functional was considered rare by someone who was in the biz.
posted by uncanny hengeman at 5:36 AM on June 25, 2010


I realized recently that when anything in my house that I've bought since my children were born gives out, I whine, "It's practically brand new!"

My children are 26 and 28 years old.
posted by tizzie at 1:25 PM on June 25, 2010


Mr Watson—Come here—I want to you to switch over to Eastenders.
posted by panboi at 1:33 PM on June 25, 2010


Just think, all those wood cabinets used to be busy sucking CO2 out of the air.
posted by Twang at 5:58 PM on June 25, 2010


Double. I swear I've seen this on MeFi before (the BBC story dates to July 2009) and I have a good memory for this sort of thing. But I cannot locate the original post. Perhaps some clever moderator could use their search skills to locate it.
posted by charlie don't surf at 8:26 PM on June 25, 2010


You know, I had no idea until just now that this story wasn't brand new. I have no idea what month or year it is. </absent-minded professor>
posted by jessamyn at 8:55 PM on June 25, 2010


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