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Television sets 1937

As the BBC television service settles into its first full year, the prices of television receivers begin to fall.

Baird TV receivers 1937   Mullard CRTs 1937
Source: Terra Media Archives, Philips

Baird Television, using still the Televisor brand name, now charges 55 gns (57.75) for its model T.5. Baird's 240-line mechanical system drops out of the running at the end of January, but the advertising still promotes the Baird name as that of 'world pioneers and manufacturers of all types of television equipment'. The key component of the Marconi-EMI system is the cathode ray tube. Mullard charges 15 gns (15.75) for this 12-inch tube. The average weekly wage of male adult manual workers was around 3.40, meaning that the cost of a receiver was equivalent to 17 times the average weekly wage.

Pye Teleceivers 1937  Ultra TV 1937
Source: Terra Media Archives, Philips

The standard design at this stage involves mounting the tube vertically in the cabinet and viewing the picture through a mirror. The claim of 'cinematic realism' is, of course, relative. The use of a close-up in the illustration for the Ultra receiver is a more telling indication of the advisable form of picture composition that was to prevail for years to come.

Compare the advertising a year later.


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Page updated 28 July 2008