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Star Trek - Original Series The one that started it all...

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Old October 7 2013, 07:33 PM   #31
Melakon
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

When I was in high school in the 60s, I was buying books about old radio shows I'd never heard, and even had a record album of old radio show openings, and my dad remembered quite a few of them.

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Old October 7 2013, 07:48 PM   #32
A beaker full of death
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Melakon wrote: View Post
^ You might want to check the Internet Archive at http://archive.org/index.php

They have some old radio shows there, but I'm not sure which ones. I've downloaded old movies, cartoons, and tv shows from there.
Thanks - yeah, they have thousands of hours of radio. Direct link is http://archive.org/details/oldtimeradio

I can't recommend Suspense (http://archive.org/details/OTRR_Suspense_Singles) highly enough. The whole archive is available by (legal) bittorrent.
Every episode features first rate movie and stage actors (Orson Welles and Peter Lorre show up many times), excellent writers like Lucille Fletcher, and solid scores (usually by Bernard Herrmann).
Sad that these are virtually unknown, even among people like us, today.
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Old October 7 2013, 08:14 PM   #33
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

XM has an OTR, Old Time Radio, channel. My kids have grown up hearing, yes, Suspense (we turn off the lights), plus Jack Benny, Dragnet et al. Aren't there some fan productions of Trek done as audio?
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Old October 8 2013, 01:21 AM   #34
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

ZapBrannigan wrote: View Post
Melakon wrote: View Post
It's possible some of those early color TV's in the 50s or 60s had remotes that did that, as not all shows were color then. I didn't buy a color tv with remote until the 70s though (a Magnavox), and I think it did have something like that. In poor reception areas, a black and white show could have multi-colored "snow" specks, which was more distracting than black and white snow. A poorly received color show could have color snow, making the intended image harder to see, but easier to see in black and white.
I feel pretty silly now, but this is almost starting to ring the faintest imaginable bell. I can't quite remember it, but I think we had that on our first color set, too. When there was not enough signal for a color picture, you'd pop that button and stop trying to pull in color at all. I think there was a button for that!
This is probably TMI, but my other hobby is antique electronics... so I can't resist. Please forgive.

Yes, many of the color televisions of that era had "color switches," either on their front panels or on their remotes, that were used to disable their color. Turning off the color was often needed to remove the color noise from black and white broadcasts (e.g., color snow), and switches were sometimes employed for a couple of reasons:

1. To keep the prices of color sets as low as possible, many manufacturers took shortcuts in their circuits in order to eliminate parts (one manufacturer that comes to mind is Madman Muntz). Normal, "higher end" sets, e.g., those from Philco, Zenith, RCA, etc., employed circuits in them called color killers that looked for signals in the analog broadcast transmissions called color bursts. These color bursts were added by the stations to tell the television receivers that the transmitted pictures were in color. If the broadcasts were in black and white, then the stations didn't transmit the color bursts and their absence from the broadcast signals caused the color killers in the receiving sets to disable the circuits associated with displaying color. Thus, the color killers effectively removed all the color noise from the black and white broadcasts. Cheaper sets - e.g., those from Muntz, Montgomery Ward, etc. - replaced the color killer circuit components with simple on/off switches. The switches weren't as elegant and as automated as the killer circuits, but they did their jobs.

2. In the 1950's-1970's, television stations were still getting used to the newfangled concept of "color" broadcasting. Previously, they had been transmitting strictly monochrome signals. When color came along, they had to add this new type of signal to their broadcast repertoire and learn to switch back and forth between the old and the new formats. To make a long story short, a lot of station operations were done manually back then, and the engineers often forgot to turn off the color burst signals when transmitting black and white programming. Thus, the home television receivers with color killers got confused, and they tried to display the black and white programming in color. The result was not pretty, and so the color switches were often added to them for a good fix.

OK, sorry, l'm done. Oh, except for this. Here's an old snapshot from 1967, which I thought was not only apropos for this thread, but also for the upcoming holiday.

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Old October 8 2013, 04:11 AM   #35
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Color tv is such a 'living laboratory' of how time flies. At one point, color tv was a new big thing, and now the ratio of time is sliding the black and white era into just a brief blip in the past.

Kind of like how as a teenager, you're chomping at the bit to get your driver's license, and the next thing you know, you've been on the road for decades!
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Old October 8 2013, 11:07 AM   #36
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Due to both a lousy job and outright stubborness, I used a 1982 TV until March of 2012. I doubt even the designers expected it to last 30 years!

It was one of those big sets that sits on the floor, has wood paneling, and big brass knobs and handles everywhere that don't actually open anything.

Courtesy of some device from Radio Shack I even had it hooked up to a DVD player.

I was determined to keep it until it just sort of stopped working entirely one day, but it didn't go that way. The image steadily grew more and more wavy. Finally when it was becoming difficult to identify people on screen I caved and got rid of it.

I was hoping it was worth something to a collector but apparently no TV set made after about 1965 or so has any value. But while it sat on the curb on garbage day someone still ripped out its circuitry. Can you melt that down or something?

I've now got a 46" 1080 awesome thing with a wi-fi blu-ray player. Who knew Star Trek could look that good?

I wanted to attach a picture of the poor old TV here but I don't quite know how to do that.
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Old October 8 2013, 11:15 AM   #37
Gov Kodos
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

If you have an account with a photo hosting site like photobucket, you can post photos with the instant image button here.
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Old October 8 2013, 01:11 PM   #38
J.T.B.
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

alchemist wrote: View Post
This is probably TMI, but my other hobby is antique electronics... so I can't resist. Please forgive.
[...]
That's great information, thanks. I had heard of the color burst signal before but forgot about it.
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Old October 8 2013, 01:15 PM   #39
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

KarmicCurse wrote: View Post
I've now got a 46" 1080 awesome thing with a wi-fi blu-ray player. Who knew Star Trek could look that good?
46 inches of 1080 awesomeness... and the best thing on it is reruns. Oh, the ferrous patella.

Actually, there's a whole breed of TV shows that will never look any better than they did on original broadcast. As video equipment improved, it began to encroach on film. I believe STAR TREK TNG was shot on film (including the VFX plates), but was completely "posted" in video—including all the VFX composites. Unless the camera negatives still exist, such a show will be locked into the format it was mastered in. There are companies like Lowry which can clean up old film and even video (such as the Apollo 11 video), but even that is limited... until the Talosians come along.
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Old October 8 2013, 01:20 PM   #40
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
I had heard of the color burst signal before but forgot about it.
Ah, suffering a type of amnesia known as blanking.

I was delayed for an interval after tripping over it on the back porch, but it didn't phase me. I just called the naval yard for a subcarrier.
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Old October 8 2013, 02:00 PM   #41
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Metryq wrote: View Post

Actually, there's a whole breed of TV shows that will never look any better than they did on original broadcast. As video equipment improved, it began to encroach on film. I believe STAR TREK TNG was shot on film (including the VFX plates), but was completely "posted" in video—including all the VFX composites.
TNG is being reconstructed from the original film elements and looks incredible in 1080p. They released season four on Blu-ray not too long ago.
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Old October 8 2013, 02:13 PM   #42
alchemist
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Metryq wrote: View Post
J.T.B. wrote: View Post
I had heard of the color burst signal before but forgot about it.
Ah, suffering a type of amnesia known as blanking.

I was delayed for an interval after tripping over it on the back porch, but it didn't phase me. I just called the naval yard for a subcarrier.
Great response, Metryq! ROTF, and it megahertz! We are in total sync, brother!


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Old October 8 2013, 02:57 PM   #43
Tora Ziyal
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

When I discovered TNG in 1992, I had a 19" b&w set that someone had given me. Luckily, it died shortly thereafter, and I bought a 13" color TV. Now I just watch DVD's or Netflix on my iMac. Obviously, I've never been much of a TV watcher!

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I can't believe that it's already two pages and nobody has commented that the OP has the most awesomest username in all of the TrekBBS.
I already commented on it in another thread. Great name!
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Old October 8 2013, 03:15 PM   #44
HGN2001
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Our family was a relatively early adopter of color TV. I think we got our first color TV in the summer of 1965. I remember a lot of promos for upcoming favorite shows switching to color that fall. Until that year, most of what we watched was in black & white anyway. We didn't watch much of the NBC shows like BELL TELEPHONE HOUR or BONANZA that were in color before that year.

But 1965-66 was the first year of about half & half color on ABC and CBS, while NBC was boasting the "full-color network" as its slogan. I can recall the neighbors stopping in to see a show or two in color on our TV.

So when STAR TREK premiered with "The Man Trap", I was there, watching the colorful NBC Peacock announce that "the following program is brought to you in living color on NBC."

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VE_oHJt_V5M

We lived close enough to good city-grade analog television signals in Philly that we didn't have to contend too much with snow. We had a little ghosting at times, but that was from the signal bouncing off of taller structures.

Unfortunately, I also had a terrible conflict of programming in that pre-VCR era. My favorite show at the time was BEWITCHED, and it aired halfway through this new STAR TREK, so I often watched the first half of TREK and then switched. The fall of 1966 was also the start of BEWITCHED being in color, so that was a big event.

It wasn't until "The City On The Edge Of Forever" that I stuck with STAR TREK and abandoned BEWITCHED for the summer reruns.

Then the worst happened. NBC moved the show to Friday nights. Our family had this summer cottage where we used to spend weekends during nine-or-so months of the year. So when the fall season of 1967 rolled around, I was forced to watch STAR TREK on our summer cottage TV - in black & white. So my views of the series were then reduced to:



... and it wasn't even THAT good. This cottage was in the realm of the Baltimore, MD market, and the NBC affiliate of the day was WBAL, Channel 11. It had a bit of snow in its picture on most nights, but still not too bad.

Gone were the colorful uniforms and the color-lighted sets, and those first 10 or so episodes looked pretty drab in comparison to what I'd gotten used to. But the stories were the thing - I was just happy to be able to watch it.

Then as cold weather set in, I once again had color episodes through until March or so. Then it was back to the black & white again.

There were some episodes that I'd not see in color until it aired in syndication.

I do not miss the days of analog television at all. Those old tube sets may have some appeal to retro types, but I'll take my modern-day, flat-screen, perfect picture set any day.

Harry
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Old October 8 2013, 06:54 PM   #45
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Re: Nostalgia of old tv sets

Warped9 wrote: View Post
^^ Although Sept. 8th, 1966 is the premiere date for TOS in the U.S. the Canadian premiere actually aired two days earlier on Sept. 6th on CTV. And CTV Toronto station CFTO was broadcasting TOS reruns when I started watching Star Trek in 1970. In later years CKVR out of Barrie, Ontario would broadcast TOS often at late night hours or even in the early a.m. time slots. This would go on for many years.

More recently Space (presently owned by Bell Media) has been airing TOS (and now TOS-R) since Space first began broadcasting in 1997.
Incredible. Your experiences by and large echo mine. I've been living in Scarborough my whole life. I first saw TOS on CTV, which back then was CFTO channel 9. I became addicted to it in 1970, watching it on weekends when it was on. Later, around 1974 WUTV channel 29 Buffalo started playing it each week night at 4pm. My picture was snowy on the nights I could get it and of course, B/W. My dad would never opt for cable...so I had to rough it....and I didn't care. One BIG problem with WUTV channel 29 was that they had SO many commercials (locally made...somewhat fun to watch) that they regularly chopped the episodes so that a known scene was missing. One time (and I recall it vividly), they chopped The Omega Glory so bad it not only was missing the fight scene in the cell with Cloud (just showed Kirk getting hit over the head....one didn't know how he got there or where Cloud got the bar) and bits of other scene's....it almost made no sense story-wise (LOL....beyond making nearly no sense it complete form...some may argue).

I almost miss those days.

Thanks for sharing your memories...they parallel mine to a good degree.
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