A new approach to technological television history and conservation
By Dr Paul Marshall
How does traditional analogue television work? That’s a question beyond the comfort zone of most media historians who may not be familiar with analogue electronics. Even young engineers know little of thermionics, cathode rays and a myriad of other forgotten technologies. This important facet of television’s history is now only recorded by older engineers and by amateur groups who collect these technologies. In this paper, I will show by using examples how material artefacts can help us understand television’s history more fully.
Keywords: broadcasting, engineering, television, conservation, restoration, preservation
How to Cite: Marshall, P., 2019. Making Old Television Technology Make Sense. VIEW Journal of European Television History and Culture, 8(15), pp.32–45. DOI: http://doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2019.jethc163
Read the article here: http://doi.org/10.18146/2213-0969.2019.jethc163
By Paul Marshall
From the late 1960s through to 1981 (when they lost the broadcasting franchise for the southern region), ITV Southern Television was unique in the world in having a dedicated outside broadcast boat.
Continue reading “Southerner”
Dicky Howett recalls a little piece of ABC Television at Didsbury.
In a residential street on the outskirts of Manchester there used to stand the production base of ABC Television. (You remember ABC Television? Come on now, that was back in the days when ITV was ITV!). Demolition, it seems, is the pre-ordained fate of most pioneer tv establishments. For example, A-R tv’s Wembley got razed and recently, the big double production space known as ‘Studio Five’. Teddington Studios became an upmarket riverside residential enclave; Television Centre – sold for a pittance; the London Studios are not what they used to be; Lime Grove bit the dust and Alexandra Palace… well who knows? However, redundancy is the name of the game and sentiment doesn’t enter the balance sheet.
Continue reading “ABC Television at Didsbury”
Dicky Howett rummages through the Radio Times
Via the delights of eBay, I acquired recently, the first 26 editions (from Jan. 8th 1937) of the Radio Times special ’Television’ supplement.
Continue reading “Pre-War OBs and Other Things”
By Paul Marshall
Pick-up any worthwhile book on the history of television and turn to the index to look up the word ‘interlace’ or ‘interlacing’. Look at the referenced pages and somewhere you will find an established ‘fact’ that Randall Ballard of RCA invented the ‘clever’ technique of interlacing in 1932. It doesn’t matter whether the book is American, British, German, French or Russian – Randall Ballard invented interlacing. Is this ‘fact’ completely sound though? As with so many issues in the history of the technological development of television the rights to precedence have become distorted over the years by manipulations of corporate image, tweaking for reasons of national pride or just plain acceptance of the status quo.
Continue reading “Interlacing – the hidden story of 1920s video compression technology”
By Paul Marshall
As one grows older, anniversaries seem to come around ever more frequently. Perhaps in an uncertain and ever faster moving world we crave stability, points of reference and solid ground. 2008 is, as is any year, an anniversary for many things and many people, but to anyone who professes an interest in the history of television it is a significant date.
Continue reading “One Hundred Years of All-Electronic Television”
Dicky Howett delves into the engineering logs of BBCtv Southampton.
Continue reading “The Life and Times of Studio ‘S’”
Tv technology collector Dicky Howett reports in 1999 on a trip to the USA and finds an American television communicopia.
Continue reading “Hollywood on TV”
Dicky Howett charts a few colour tv experiments and returns to the fervid days of early British colour tv.
Continue reading “Colourful Times”