Television History - The First 75 Years
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Radio World


1932 June 4 RADIO WORLD.JPG (83257 bytes) (83K)
June 4th, 1932

1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp18.JPG (70368 bytes) (70K)
"Television Schedule of W2XBS Announced"  -  This was the mechanical spinning-wheel system, 60 lines, 20 frames per second.  Broadcast was in the New York-New Jersey area, at two different 3-hour time periods, 6 hours per day, weekdays and Saturday, at 5,000 watts.

1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp20a.JPG (111606 bytes) (112K)  1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp20b.JPG (105628 bytes) (105K)   1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp20c.JPG (126263 bytes) (126K)   1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp20e.JPG (95150 bytes) (95K)    1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp20d.JPG (187083 bytes) (187K)
"Fascination of Television Put at 15 Minutes" --  States that the maximum time a viewer would gaze in fascination at television would be 10 to 15 minutes!  They were speaking about the neon orange-colored spinning wheel system being watched by a layman.  Scientists and TV enthusiasts would watch longer, of course.

1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp22a.JPG (110281 bytes) (110K)  1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp22b.JPG (110494 bytes) (110K)  1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp22c.JPG (57219 bytes) (60K)  1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp22d.JPG (79928 bytes) (80K)  1932 June 4 RADIO WORLDp22e.JPG (81550 bytes) (82K)    
"RCA Television Demonstrated To Licensees"  -- Perhaps one of the first unbiased reports of the results of the private 1932 showing of the RCA electronic CRT television to set licensees.  This was RCA's 1932 field test set, of which only a handful were built, and one known example remains today.  It says that "uncanny contrasts were present in the images, and what might pass for a beard and a moustache seemed momentarily to disfigure the originally attractive face of the [female] soprano [singer]." 

Television clearly was not ready for public introduction.  The years 1932-1933 were the low-point of the American depression.  Giving Mr. Sarnoff (RCA president) credit, in spite of the bleak financial times, he continued to pour large sums of money into the television project.  It would be seven long years before electronic television would be launched in America.

Click here to see one of the 1932 RCA field test sets, on the ETF website


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