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Trade Chat Australian HMV Colour TV

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One for our oz trade members such as Ian @irob2345 to identify. I'm wondering what chassis is in this rather grand looking TV and the year. Was it Home-grown (AUS), USA, or a Thorn?

It's up for grabs in Melbourne.


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Posted : 14/05/2024 1:41 pm
ntscuser reacted
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Looks like it’s even got a clock built in too! But someone’s stuck tape over it..

Posted : 14/05/2024 3:01 pm
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Does have the looks of a TX10 or TX100 but doubt it.


Posted : 15/05/2024 3:02 am
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Probably a C212 chassis, using the 20AX CRT. That would put it as '77 to '82, approximately. Could have also been the later C221 or a C231.

Here is a link to a repair project involving its predecessor, the C211. Somewhat similar physically but being a 2nd gen chassis, the C212 was better sorted and quite reliable. It had the same lift-up chassis with the boards fitting into a frame that you see in the C211. Great to service, but if you bumped it the wrong way the chassis could come crashing down and neck the CRT.


I can't recall what Japanese design EMI took on after the C231 finished, I was out of the game by then. Possibly Mitsubishi, in a JV with AWA?


Posted : 15/05/2024 8:51 am
crustytv reacted
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HMV - EMI, Kriesler and Pye were the only local chassis designs for our 1st gen CTVs.

Of the three, Kriesler based theirs on the Philips K9, which means they improved on what was by then a successful, well-sorted if rather complex design. The 1st gen 59-01 was relatively trouble-free and made beautiful pictures.

EMI's C211 was an ambitious but ultimately very troubled design that drew ideas from a number of European TVs. The flip-up chassis and the repair-in-place modules were unique though. Later chassis such as the C212 were far more reliable and deserved to sell well but the reputational damage was done.

EMI could not build enough working TVs to satisfy the market and so they imported some Bradfords from the UK. That was the only colour TV we saw here that had valves.

Which leaves Pye. The T29 was the simplest and easily the most reliable of the 1st gen CTVs. It wasn't based on any other design save Pye's very successful all SS B&W chassis. It used Toshiba's in-line-gun CRTs. The very early ones had a dot, rather than a stripe, pattern for the phosphors.

AWA tried very hard to build the Thorn 4000 series chassis into a reliable product. By '78 they had given up and were building Mitsubishi chassis, assembling PCBs from discrete components.

Panasonic assembled Japanese designs.

Rank - Arena locally assembled NEC chassis. The 1st gen TV was a design that had been in production for a number of years in Japan (with all that entails for reliability), with a mains transformer and a "PAL board" added. This board just had the PAL-specific circuitry and was wired into the existing NTSC decoder. Chroma gain available from the NTSC chipset at 4.43 was lacking so the saturation varied with the fine tuning. Not good.

Like Pye, Rank (NEC) used the same Toshiba in-line CRTs.

Rank had the advantage that they could supplement local production with imports of complete TVs so, in the boom years they won the sales race. The company I worked for used them in their rental fleet. The fully imported sets had rather flimsy plywood cabinets and needed to be completely set up before we could send them out. The same locally built model was a much better TV.

Posted : 15/05/2024 9:48 am
RichardFromMarple, slidertogrid, crustytv and 1 people reacted
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@irob2345 It's interesting that EMI had made their on sets in Australia rather than licence the HMV & Marconiphone brands to Thorn.  Then badge engineering a Decca design would have been confusing for any TV engineers who had recently immigrated!

Posted : 15/05/2024 9:40 pm
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The relationships between different companies were completely different in Australia. Thorn and HMV were competitors, for example.

Imported designs generally did badly here. There were exceptions but they were few. And because of import tariffs on complete TVs lasting into the 80s, the local industry did not have so much pressure to cut costs. Product reputation was everything. The service industry probably had more say in what got made than in most other places.

Posted : 16/05/2024 8:18 am
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@irob2345 Yes it's interesting to know what was happening in other markets.

Posted : 16/05/2024 9:28 pm
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You'd have to feel sorry for what happened to AEI-Ekco in Australia in the 1950s.

First up, they were battling the service industry with a design that was different to everything else, it was the only live chassis design and required service vans stock a unique set of valves.

Then there was the Daily Mirror (Murdoch "scandal sheet") front page headline "TV Death Trap" after a little girl was electrocuted by one with a smashed knob. This was the kind of publicity that all manufacturers fear.

AEI-Ekco quickly came up with an excellent local 110 degree design that had a mains transformer and used "normal" valves - this was on the market in 1959. But the locally-produced Mazda CRTs tended to have soft pictures and short lives.

There followed AEI-Ekco's failed attempt (despite saturation advertising) to market "Galamatic" washing machines.

Then there was the 1961 Credit Squeeze that finished off about half the industry, including Ekco. Admiral and Stromberg-Carlson left the scene at that stage too. AEI survived and went back to making "Hotpoint" irons and toasters etc. The Admiral facility in Gow St. Bankstown was taken over by a washing machine maker.

The dislike of the live chassis in Australia was still there in the colour era. When AWA - Thorn imported the 3504 model from the UK to make up for local production shortfalls of the 4KA/4000 series, it came with a mains transformer bolted to the inside of the case. Same P/S with its crowbar protection and a little red cut-out button that went "ping" when a CRT flashover happened.

Come to think of it, the 4KA had a full mains transformer too.

Posted : 18/05/2024 5:28 am