The Obscure and missing Continental

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The Obscure and missing Continental 1

Continentals sets were an important addition to the UK market in the early to mid 1970s, due to the increasing uptake of colour the demand on UK manufacturing meant for a short period they were unable to keep pace. A temporary solution being to import European TVs, thus opening the door to some very interesting sets being offered for sale or on rental to the UK public. These TVs were the likes of B&O, Telefunken, Tandberg, Korting, Scantec, Luxor, Finlandia, Finlux, Korting, SABA and Salora to name but a few. Many of examples of these can be found in my collection pages here.

More often than not, these continental TVs put our home-grown UK sets to shame, not only on performance and reliability but style. The numbers of continentals surviving in the UK to this day are very low, by comparison to the numbers of UK based sets. Not surprising as imported numbers were for a short duration and the numbers equally low at the time compared with the UK manufactured sets across the decade 1970-1980.

One such continental TV is rarely if ever seen or mentioned, that being the ASA from Finland. I’ve only ever seen one turn up on eBay, that was about 6-years ago at the time of writing this article. It was located in Bristol, and that was the 26″ CT5004. Reading an article in Television magazine dated Sept 1980, it revealed that hybrid ASA colour televisions were all imported by a firm in Bristol during the 70’s colour boom, the eBay one had remained in the area all its life.

Recently I managed to acquire an original ASA sales brochure that covered TVs, Radio, Amplifiers and record players. The brochure had the dealer stamp which confirmed the Bristol connection.

ASA sets are distributed in the U.K. By:
Maggs (Bristol) Television Ltd
The Station, Sea Mills Lane
Bristol BS9 1DX
Tel: 0272 Bristol 684801, 685174

So to recap, ASA TVs available in the UK seem to have been the CT5003 which was a 22″, the CT5004 a 26″ both Hybrid ( Valve and transistor/ic), available in Teak or Rosewood. Also, available was the 2367, a 24″ Black & White TV equally available in Teak or rosewood.

I would like to find one of the ASA colour TVs for my museums to add to the existing continental collection, so if you have one to dispose of, please use the contact form and get in touch. After all that waffle, I suspect you’d quite like to see what and ASA looks like.The Obscure and missing Continental 2 The Obscure and missing Continental 3 The Obscure and missing Continental 4 The Obscure and missing Continental 5

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