Richtige Fernseher haben Röhren!

Richtige Fernseher haben Röhren!

In Brief: On this site you will find pictures and information about some of the electronic, electrical and electrotechnical technology relics that the Frank Sharp Private museum has accumulated over the years .

Premise: There are lots of vintage electrical and electronic items that have not survived well or even completely disappeared and forgotten.

Or are not being collected nowadays in proportion to their significance or prevalence in their heyday, this is bad and the main part of the death land. The heavy, ugly sarcophagus; models with few endearing qualities, devices that have some over-riding disadvantage to ownership such as heavy weight,toxicity or inflated value when dismantled, tend to be under-represented by all but the most comprehensive collections and museums. They get relegated to the bottom of the wants list, derided as 'more trouble than they are worth', or just forgotten entirely. As a result, I started to notice gaps in the current representation of the history of electronic and electrical technology to the interested member of the public.


Following this idea around a bit, convinced me that a collection of the peculiar alone could not hope to survive on its own merits, but a museum that gave equal display space to the popular and the unpopular, would bring things to the attention of the average person that he has previously passed by or been shielded from. It's a matter of culture. From this, the Obsolete Technology Tellye Web Museum concept developed and all my other things too. It's an open platform for all electrical Electronic TV technology to have its few, but NOT last, moments of fame in a working, hand-on environment. We'll never own Colossus or Faraday's first transformer, but I can show things that you can't see at the Science Museum, and let you play with things that the Smithsonian can't allow people to touch, because my remit is different.

There was a society once that was the polar opposite of our disposable, junk society. A whole nation was built on the idea of placing quality before quantity in all things. The goal was not “more and newer,” but “better and higher" .This attitude was reflected not only in the manufacturing of material goods, but also in the realms of art and architecture, as well as in the social fabric of everyday life. The goal was for each new cohort of children to stand on a higher level than the preceding cohort: they were to be healthier, stronger, more intelligent, and more vibrant in every way.

The society that prioritized human, social and material quality is a Winner. Truly, it is the high point of all Western civilization. Consequently, its defeat meant the defeat of civilization itself.

Today, the West is headed for the abyss. For the ultimate fate of our disposable society is for that society itself to be disposed of. And this will happen sooner, rather than later.

OLD, but ORIGINAL, Well made, Funny, Not remotely controlled............. and not Made in CHINA.

How to use the site:

- If you landed here via any Search Engine, you will get what you searched for and you can search more using the search this blog feature provided by Google. You can visit more posts scrolling the left blog archive of all posts of the month/year,
or you can click on the main photo-page to start from the main page. Doing so it starts from the most recent post to the older post simple clicking on the Older Post button on the bottom of each page after reading , post after post.

You can even visit all posts, time to time, when reaching the bottom end of each page and click on the Older Post button.

- If you arrived here at the main page via bookmark you can visit all the site scrolling the left blog archive of all posts of the month/year pointing were you want , or more simple You can even visit all blog posts, from newer to older, clicking at the end of each bottom page on the Older Post button.
So you can see all the blog/site content surfing all pages in it.

- The search this blog feature provided by Google is a real search engine. If you're pointing particular things it will search IT for you; or you can place a brand name in the search query at your choice and visit all results page by page. It's useful since the content of the site is very large.

Note that if you don't find what you searched for, try it after a period of time; the site is a never ending job !

Every CRT Television saved let revive knowledge, thoughts, moments of the past life which will never return again.........

Many contemporary "televisions" (more correctly named as displays) would not have this level of staying power, many would ware out or require major services within just five years or less and of course, there is that perennial bug bear of planned obsolescence where components are deliberately designed to fail and, or manufactured with limited edition specificities..... and without considering........picture......sound........quality........

..............The bitterness of poor quality is remembered long after the sweetness of todays funny gadgets low price has faded from memory........ . . . . . .....
Don't forget the past, the end of the world is upon us! Pretty soon it will all turn to dust!

Have big FUN ! !
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©2010, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2014 Frank Sharp - You do not have permission to copy photos and words from this blog, and any content may be never used it for auctions or commercial purposes, however feel free to post anything you see here with a courtesy link back, btw a link to the original post here , is mandatory.
All sets and apparates appearing here are property of
Engineer Frank Sharp. NOTHING HERE IS FOR SALE !

Monday, March 28, 2011

PANASONIC TX-25A3C YEAR 1994.











The PANASONIC  TX-25A3C  is the first DIGITAL TELEVISION set From Panasonic TV models.

Until the coming of this model Panasonic was producing excellent analog technology tellyes.

With this model, Panasonic, is , like other high class fabricants, adopting the DIGIVISION ITT Digital Signal Processing Technology, using the ITT DIGIVISION DIGIT2000 Fast chipset improving furthermore picture quality and sound.
The television receiver has an alphanumeric display  which appears on the picture tube screen, to give the user data on the tuned channel number, colour settings and other operating data. The digital processor which generates the characters for display also controls the channel setting, etc., under the control of a digital remote control unit . The processor  has an associated memory circuit  for permanent tuning back up. The control of the capacitance diode tuner  is achieved by the processor  altering the dividing factor of a feedback loop to a phase/frequency comparator . The other input to the comparator is a divided frequency from a quartz oscillator.


The PANASONIC  TX-25A3C  is a DIGITAL Colour television receiver or set , are known in which the majority of signal processing that takes place therein is carried out digitally. That is, a video or television signal is received in a conventional fashion using a known analog tuning circuit and then, following the tuning operation, the received analog television signal is converted into a digital signal and digitally processed before subsequently being converted back to an analog signal for display on a colour cathode ray tube.

In a conventional television receiver, all signals are analog-processed. Analog signal processing, however, has the problems at the video stage and thereafter. These problems stem from the general drawbacks of analog signal processing with regard to time-base operation, specifically, incomplete Y/C separation (which causes cross color and dot interference), various types of problems resulting in low picture quality, and low precision of synchronization. Furthermore, from the viewpoints of cost and ease of manufacturing the analog circuit, a hybrid configuration must be employed even if the main circuit comprises an IC. In addition to these disadvantages, many adjustments must be performed.

In order to solve the above problems, it is proposed to process all signals in a digital form from the video stage to the chrominance signal demodulation stage. In such a digital television receiver, various improvements in picture quality should result due to the advantages of digital signal processing.

Therefore digital television signal processing system introduced in 1984 by the Worldwide Semiconductor Group (Freiburg, West Germany) of International Telephone and Telegraph Corporation is described in an ITT Corporation publication titled "VLSI Digital TV System--DIGIT 2000." In that system color video signals, after being processed in digital (binary) form, are converted to analog form by means of digital-to-analog converters before being coupled to an image displaying kinescope. The analog color video signals are coupled to the kinescope via analog buffer amplifiers and video output kinescope driver amplifiers which provide video output signals at a high level suitable for driving intensity control electrodes of the kinescope.


The PANASONIC TX-25A3C   Is a multistandard set and relates to a digital multistandard decoder for video signals and to a method for decoding video signals.
Colour video signals, so-called composite video, blanking and sync signals (CVBS) are essentially composed of a brightness signal or luminance component (Y), two colour difference signals or chrominance components (U, V or I, Q), vertical and horizontal sync signals (VS, HS) and a blanking signal (BL).

The different coding processes, e.g. NTSC, PAL and SECAM, introduced into the known colour television standards, differ in the nature of the chrominance transmission and in particular the different systems make use of different colour subcarrier frequencies and different line frequencies.
The following explanations relate to the PAL and NTSC systems, but correspondingly apply to video signals of other standards and non-standardized signals.
The colour subcarrier frequency (fsc) of a PAL system and a NTSC system is fsc(NTSC) = 3.58 MHz or fsc(PAL) = 4.43 MHz.
In addition, in PAL and NTSC systems the relationships of the colour subcarrier frequency (fsc) to the line frequency (fh) are given by fsc(NTSC) = 227.50 * fh or 4•fsc(NTSC) = 910 • fh fsc(PAL) = 283.75 * fh or 4•fsc(PAL) = 1135 • fh so that the phase of the colour subcarrier in the case of NTSC is changed by 180°/line and in PAL by 270°/line.

In the case of digital video signal processing and decoding the prior art fundamentally distinguishes between two system architectures. These are the burst-locked architecture and the line-locked architecture, i.e. systems which operate with sampling frequencies for the video signal, which are produced in phase-locked manner to the colour subcarrier frequency transmitted with the burst pulse or in phase-locked manner with the line frequency, respectively.

The principal advantage of the present invention is a color television receiver is provided having a fully digital color demodulator wherein the luminance signal and the chrominance signals are separated and digitally processed prior to being converted to analog signals in that the all-digital signal processing largely eliminates the need for nonintegratable circuit elements, i.e., particularly coils and capacitors, and that the subcircuits can be preferably implemented using integrated insulated-gate field-effect transistor circuits, i.e., so-called MOS technology. This technology is better suited for implementing digital circuits than the so-called bipolar technology.

 The PANASONIC  TX-25A3C    is a multisound tv digital sound processing.

It has a DTI.(dti digital transient improvement pertains to a circuit for steepening color-signal transitions in color television receivers or the like particularly in DIGIVISION DIGIT2000 . ) circuit arrangement designed for use in digital color-television receivers or the like and contains for each of the two digital color-difference signals a slope detector to which both a digital signal defining an amplitude threshold value and a digital signal defining a time threshold value are applied. At least one intermediate value occurring during an edge to be steepened is stored, and at the same time value of the steepened edge, it is "inserted" into the latter.

The bandwidth of the color-difference channel is very small compared with the bandwidth of the luminance channel, namely only about 1/5 that of the luminance channel in the television standards now in use. This narrow bandwidth leads to blurred color transitions ("color edging") in case of sudden color-signal changes, e.g., at the edges of the usual color-bar test signal, because, compared with the associated luminance-signal transition, an approximately fivefold duration of the color-signal transition results from the narrow transmission bandwidth.

In the prior circuit arrangement, the relatively slowly rising color-signal edges are steepened by suitably delaying the color-difference signals and the luminance signal and steepening the edges of the color-difference signals at the end of the delay by suitable analog circuits. The color-difference signals and the luminance signal are present and processed in analog form as usual. This circuit arrangement is designed for use in digital color-television receivers or the like and contains for each of the two digital color-difference signals a slope detector to which both a digital signal defining an amplitude threshold value and a digital signal defining a time threshold value are applied. At least one intermediate value occurring during an edge to be steepened is stored, and at the same time value of the steepened edge, it is "inserted" into the latter. This is done by means of memories, switches, output registers, and a sequence controller.

Digital Signal Processing DIGVISION ITT in Brief:
 FOR several years now the use of digital techniques in television has been growing. A considerable impetus came initially from the need for high -quality Tv standards conversion. The IBA's DICE (Digital Intercontinental Conversion Equipment) standards converter came into operational use in 1972. It's success demonstrated convincingly the advantages of processing video signals in digital form - digital signals are neither phase nor level dependent. The trend since then has been towards the all - digital studio: digital effects generators have been in use for some time, and digital telecines were announced earlier this year. An earlier example of the application of digital techniques to television was the BBC's sound-in-syncs system, in which the sound signal is converted to digital form so that it can be added to the video signal for network distribution. The sound-in-syncs system first came into use in 1969, and is was  widely employed in pay tv systems alongside with video scrambling methods in the 80's.  Digital techniques have already appeared on the domestic TV scene. The teletext signals are digital, and require digital processing. In modern remote control systems the commands from the remote control transmitter are in digital form, and require digital decoding and digital - to -analogue conversion in the receiver before the required control action can be put into effect. Allied to this, digital techniques are used for the more sophisticated channel tuning systems. The basic TV receiver itself continues to use analogue techniques however. Are we about to see major changes here? 
ITT Semiconductors in W. Germany have been working on the application of digital techniques to basic TV receiver signal processing since 1977 with the supervision of the Engineer Micic Ljubomir, and at the recent Berlin Radio Show presented a set of digital chips for processing the video, audio and deflection signals in a TV receiver. The set consists of a' couple of l.s.i. and six v.l.s.i. chips - and by very large scale integration (v.l.s.i.) we're talking about chips that contain some more 200,000 transistors. What are the advantages? 
For the setmaker, there's reduction in the component count and simpler, automated receiver alignment - alignment data is simply fed into a programmable memory in the receiver, which then adjusts itself. Subsequently, the use of feedback enables the set to maintain its performance as it ages. From the user's viewpoint, the advantages are improved performance and the fact that extra features such as picture -within -a -picture (two pictures on the screen at the same time) and still pictures become relatively simple to incorporate. The disadvantage of course is the need for a lot of extra circuitry. Since the received signals remain in analogue form, analogue -to -digital conversion is required before signal processing is undertaken. As the c.r.t. requires analogue drive signals, digital -to -analogue conversion is required prior to the RGB output stages - the situation is somewhat different in the timebase and audio departments, since the line drive is basically digital anyway and class D amplifier techniques can be used in the field and audio output stages. In between the A -D conversion and the various output stages, handling the signals in digital form calls for much more elaborate circuitry - hence those chips with 200,000 or so transistors. The extra circuitry is all incorporated within a handful of chips of course, but the big question is if and when the use of these chips will become an economic proposition, taking into account reduced receiver assembly/setting up costs, compared to the use of the present analogue technology - after all, colour receiver component counts are already very low. With the present digital technology, it's not feasible to convert the signals to digital form at i.f. So conversion takes place following video and sound demodulation. Fig. 1 shows in simple block diagram form the basic video and deflection signal processing arrangement used in the system devised by ITT Semiconductors. Before going into detail, two basic points have to be considered - the rate at which the incoming analogue signals are sampled for conversion to digital form, and the number of digits required for signal coding. Consider the example shown in Fig. 2. At both (a) and (b) the signals are sampled at times Ti, T2 etc. In (a) the signal is changing at a much faster rate than the sampling rate. So very little of the signal information would be present in the samples. In (b) the rate at which the signal is changing is much slower, and since the sampling rate is the same the samples will contain the signal information accurately. In practice, the sampling rate has to be at least twice the bandwidth of the signal being sampled. Once you've got your samples, the next question is how many digits are required for adequate resolution of the signal, i.e. how many steps are required on the vertical (signal level) scale in Fig. 2 The use of a four -digit code, i.e. 0000, 0001 etc., gives 16 possible signal levels. Doubling the number of digits to eight gives 256 signal levels and so on. ITT's experience shows that the luminance signal requires 8 bits (digits), the colour -difference signals require 6 bits, the audio signal requires 12 bits (14 for hi-fi quality) while 13 bits are required for a linear horizontal scan on a 26inch tube. These digital signals are handled as parallel data streams in the subsequent signal processing. Returning to Fig. 1, the A -D and D -A conversion required in the video channel is carried out by a single chip which ITT call the video codec (coder/decoder). A clock pulse generator i.c. is required to produce the various pulse trains necessary for the digital signal processing, and a control i.c. is used to act as a computer for the whole digital system and also to provide interfacing to enable the external controls (brightness, volume, colour etc.) to produce the desired effects. In addition, the control i.c. incorporates the digital channel selection system. The video codec i.c. uses parallel A-D/D-A conversion, i.e. a string of voltage comparators connected in parallel. This system places a high premium on the number of bits used to code the signal in digital form, so ITT have devised a technique of biasing the converter to achieve 8 -bit resolution using only 7 bits (the viewer's eye does some averaging on alternate lines, as with Simple PAL, but this time averaging luminance levels). The A -D comparators provide grey -encoded outputs, so the first stage in the video processor i.c. is a grey -to -binary transcoder. As Fig. 3 shows, the processes carried out in the video processor i.c. then follow the normal practice, though everything's done in digital form. The key to this processing is the use of digital filters. These are clocked at rates up to 18MHz, and provide delays, addition and multiplication. The glass chroma delay line required for PAL decoding in a conventional analogue decoder consists of blocks of RAM (random-access memory) occupying only three square millimeters of chip area each. As an example of the ingenuity of the ITT design, the digital delay line used for chroma signal averaging/separation in the PAL system is used in the NTSC version of the chip as a luminance/chrominance signal separating comb filter. Fig. 4 shows the basic processes carried out in the deflection processor i.c. This employs the sorts of techniques we're becoming used to in the latest generation of sync processor i.c.s. Digital video goes in, and the main outputs consist of a horizontal drive pulse plus drives to the field output and EW modulator circuits. The latter are produced by a pulse -width modulator arrangement, i.e. the sort of thing employed with class D output stages. The necessary gating and blanking pulses are also provided. A further chip provides audio signal processing. One might wonder why the relatively simple audio department calls for this sort of treatment. The W. German networks are already equipping themselves for dual -channel sound however, and the audio processor i.c. contains the circuitry required to sort out the two -carrier sound signals. These chips represent a major step in digitalizing the domestic TV receiver. It seems likely that some enterprising setmaker will in due course announce a "digital TV set". The interesting point then will be whether the chip yields, and the chip prices as production increases, will eventually make it worthwhile for all setmakers to follow this path (in 1984).



ADVANTAGE - Increased picture sharpness and highly improved signal-to-noise ratio.

The PANASONIC  TX-25A3C was featuring in this model for sirst time  an Adaptive Combifilter Video Processing:
Chrominance and luminance information can be separated by appropriately combing the composite signal spectrum. Known combing arrangements take advantage of the fact that the odd multiple relationship between chrominance signal components andhalf the line scanning frequency causes the chrominance signal components for corresponding image areas on successive lines to be 180.degree. out of phase with each other. Luminance signal components for corresponding image areas on successive linesare substantially in phase with each other.


All PANASONIC BIG sets from this to a time line of 10 12 Years are digital or even 100HZ Scan rate technology.

This set was quickly replaced with models fitting the new CHASSIS EURO-2 using the ITT DIGIT3000 chipset which you already seen here at Obsolete Tecnology Tellye Museum !

These were widely used by Panasonic until they decided in a brief time to drop all digital technology and return to analog CRT TUBE set employing the UOC 1 and the UOC 3 PHILIPS technology and then completely switch off to Flat Panels and Plasma sets.

The PANASONIC  TX-25A3C set here shown has 25 Inches FSQ screen with black matrix and 100 Programs, Teletext, HIFI Stereo sound, Many connectivity sockets, Advanced OSD and many others features.

Needless to say: Picture is superb thanks even to a selected PHILIPS 45AX IMPROVED CRT TUBE, together with sound.

(Heavy set anyway).


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An Increasingly Versatile Device The domestic television set used to be simply the thing that reproduced the programmes transmitted by one or other of the three programme networks  unless you happened to be connected to one of the wire systems that have experimented with local TV and pay TV at various times. But have you noticed what an increasingly versatile thing the TV set is becoming?
- The first major extension to the domestic TV set's possibilities came with the VCR, enabling you to record off air or replay prerecorded tapes. Domestic VTR systems have at a price  been with us for roughly a decade now, but till the advent of the easy to handle VCR most low-cost VTR systems were intended for use with monitors, with the signal interconnections at video and audio frequencies.
- Then came TV games, first found in the pubs and amusement arcades, later appearing in compact, relatively inexpensive packages for home use. The significant point here was the entry of digital techniques on the domestic TV scene. On the broadcast side, digital techniques had been making a substantial contribution to operations for some years, starting with the BBC's sound-in-syncs system (1969) in which the TV sound signal is compressed, converted to digital form and inserted in the line sync pulse period, and culminating with the IBA's famed DICE, which provides electronic standards (lines, fields, colour) conversion by converting the signals to digital form, processing them, then converting them back into analogue form.
Rather far from TV games you might think, but it's all part of the same process - the increasing impact of digital techniques on the world of television. In fact the technology of TV games has evolved considerably since their first appearance.
The approach then was to employ a fair number of standard digital i.c.s to build up the circuitry required. But why not go about it in the same way as the calculator manufacturers?
It didn't take long for the semiconductor people to see this new possibility for using their l.s.i. technology. This made it a relatively simple matter to provide a range of games with just a single i.c.  the basis of the present generation of TV games.
Add a second i.c. and the whole thing comes up in glorious colour. But it doesn't end there. The talk was now is of adopting microprocessor technology and making the system programmable, so that an almost unlimited range of games of varying degrees of complexity can be played. The favoured system seems to been to use prerecorded cassettes to provide the various programmes. And once you do that, you can extend the system to all sorts of other uses - teaching systems and so on. In fact you've made the TV set into part of a home computer installation - as we outlined in Teletopics last month. It's not impossible then to imagine some "viewers" using their TV sets for games, instruction and VCR use, while keeping up to date with teletext news and getting extra information via the PO's Viewdata system - and never watching a transmitted programme at all! We've come a long way then from the days of the TV set as a goggle
(goggle ????? or gooooooooooogle).................. box.
Teletext decoders and TV games were already being built into a few sets. What other digital innovations can we expect in TV sets? (may be DVB)
One now well established use of digital techniques is to provide all electronic channel selection.
The varicap tuner simply asks to be controlled in this way, and the system lends itself readily to remote control operation. Once you're controlling the tuner and generating various signals digitally there are other things you might as well do. Like flashing the selected channel number on the screen, or the time (coming shortly in Television!). Sets which do this sort of thing have been available on the Continent for some while now.
- The latest development along these lines is the picture within a picture a reduced size picture from another channel being inserted in the corner of the main display (PIP), so that you can watch two progrpnmes at once or see when to change over to a programme due to start on another channel. This involves some interesting digital processes - you've got to lose lines, and compact the video information by reading it into a memory at one speed and reading it out at another, in effect operating at two standards simultaneously while keeping both in sync (remember how difficult it has sometimes been to keep a set in sync on one standard!).
- There's only one thing that prevents a space-age TV installation in every home: cost.
But the cost of electronic hardware has a habit of falling dramatically once production has achieved a certain level. TV games are already commonplace, and teletext decoders have  become a lot cheaper once specialised i.c. modules for the purpose go into large scale production. From this point in time, it already seems that one can regard the days when the TV set simply displayed one of the programmes available as the age of stream TV.

....................................But we all know how it ended !


One more comment about digital in 2000..............


Over the years we have learnt that one of the most important things in video/ TV technology is selecting the best system to use. We have also seen how difficult this can be. Prior to the start of the colour TV era in Europe there was an great to-do about the best system to adopt. The US NTSC system seemed an obvious choice to start with. It had been proved in use, and refine- ments had been devised. But alternative, better solutions were proposed - PAL and Secam. PAL proved to be a great success, in fact a good choice. 
The French Secam system seems to have worked just as well. Apart from the video tape battles of the Seventies, the next really big debate concerned digital TV. When it came to digital terrestrial TV (DTT), Europe and the USA again adopted different standards. 

One major difference is the modulation system used for transmission. Coded orthogonal frequency   division multiplexing (COFDM) was selected for the European DVB system, while in the USA a system called 8VSB was adopted. COFDM uses quadrature amplitude modulation of a number of orthogonal carriers that are spread across the channel bandwidth. Because of their number, each carrier has a relatively low bit rate. 
The main advantage of the system is its excellent behaviour under multipath reception conditions. 8VSB represents a rather older,  pre phase modulation technoogy: eight  state amplitude modulation of a single carrier, with a vestigial sideband. The decision on the US system was assigned to the Advanced Television Systems Committee (ATSC), reporting to the FCC. The system it proposed was approved by the FCC on December 26th, 1996. The curious date might suggest that there had been a certain amount of politicking. In fact there had been an almighty row between the TV and computer industries about the video standard to adopt, the two fearing that one or other would gain an advantage as the technologies converged. It was 'resolved' by adopting a sort of   "open standard"  we are talking about resolution and scanning standards here - the idea apparently being that the technology would somehow sort itself out.

 There seems to have been rather less concern about the modulation standard. 8VSB was adopted because it was assumed to be able to provide a larger service area than the alternatives, including COFDM, for a given transmitter power. Well, the USA is a very large place! But the US TV industry, or at least some parts of it, is now having second thoughts. Once the FCC had made its decision, there was pressure to get on with digital TV. In early 1998 there were announce- ments about the start of transmissions and broadcasters assured the FCC that DTT would be available in the ten areas of greatest population concentration by May 1999. Rapid advances were expected, with an anticipated analogue TV switch -off in 2006. So far however things have not gone like that. At the end of 1999 some seventy DTI' transmitters were in operation, but Consumer Electronics Manufacturers Association estimates suggest that only some 50,000 sets and 5,000 STBs had been sold.

 There have been many reports of technical problems, in particular with reception in urban and hilly areas and the use of indoor aerials, also with video/audio sync and other matters. Poor reception with indoor aerials in urban conditions is of particular concern: that's how much of the population receives its TV. The UK was the first European country to start DTI', in late 1998 - at much the same time as in the USA. The contrast is striking. ONdigital had signed up well over 500,000 subscribers by the end of 1999, a much higher proportion of viewers than in the USA. Free STBs have played a part of course, but it's notable that DTT 's reception in the UK has been relatively hassle -free. In making this comparison it should also be remembered that the main aim of DTT technology differs in Europe and the USA. 

The main concern in Europe has been to provide additional channels. In the USA it has been to move to HDTV, in particular to provide a successor the NTSC system. There have been plenty of channels in the USA for many a year. For example the DirecTV satellite service started in mid 1994 and offers some 200 channels. Internationally, various countries have been comparing the US and European digital systems. They have overwhelmingly come down in favour of the DVB system. There have been some very damaging assessments of the ATSC standard. The present concern in the US TV industry results from this poor domestic take up and lack of international success. Did the FCC make a boob, in particular in the choice of 8VSB? Following compara- tive tests carried out by Sinclair Broadcasting Group Inc., the company has petitioned the FCC to adopt COFDM as an option in the ATSC standard. Not only did its tests confirm poor reception with indoor aerials: they also established that the greater coverage predicted for 8VSB failed to materialise in practice. Could the USA have two DTT transmission standards? It seems unlikely. It would involve dual standard receivers and non  standardisation of transmitters. In the all important business of system selection, it looks as if the FCC got it wrong.
              ....................................   It is obviously wasteful to duplicate terrestrial TV transmissions in analogue and digital form. Sooner or later transmissions will all be digital, since this is a more efficient use of spectrum space. The question is when? It would suit some to switch off the analogue transmitters as soon as possible. 2006 has been suggested as a time to start, with ana- logue transmissions finally ending in 2010. All very neat and tidy. Whether it will work out in that way is another matter. Strong doubts are already beginning to be aired. 
 The government has, quite properly, laid down conditions to be met before the switch off occurs. Basically that the digital signal coverage should equal that achieved for analogue TV, currently 99.4 per cent of the population, and that digital receiving equipment should be available at an affordable price. The real problem is that there is a difference between a coverage of 99.4 per cent and 99.4 per cent of the population actually having digital receiving equipment. Why should those who are interested in only free - to -air channels go out and buy/rent a digital receiver? It is already becoming evident that this represents a fair chunk of the population. 
The ITC has warned the government that the 2006-2010 timetable is in jeopardy. Peter Rogers, the ITC's chief executive, has said "we need to persuade people only interested in watching free -to -air television to switch to digital. "
Unless we do, there will be no switch - over." Well not quite, because the analogue receivers will eventually wear out and have to be replaced. But that could take a long, long time. Meanwhile many people will expect to be able to continue to watch their usual TV fare using their existing analogue receivers. 

Research carried out by Culture Secretary Chris Smith's department has established that between forty and fifty per cent of the population expects the BBC licence to cover their TV viewing, which means what they get at present in analogue form. A substantial percentage of the population simply isn't interested in going digital. In fact take up of integrated receiver -decoders, as opposed to the free digital set -top boxes, has so far been very slow. 
Of five million TV sets sold in the UK year 1999 , only 10,000 were digital. There are important factors apart from overall coverage and how many people have sets. There is the extension of coverage, which becomes more difficult to achieve eco- nomically as the number of those not covered decreases. There is the problem of reception quality. And there is the question of domestic arrangements and convenience. Extending coverage to the last ten fifteen per cent of the population by means of conventional terrestrial transmitters will be expensive. Mr Smith's department seems to have conceded that other methods of signal delivery may have to be adopted - by satellite, by microwave links or by cable. The latter has of course never been economic where few households are involved. 
The frequency planners have been trying to find ways of increasing coverage even to well populated areas. There are so many areas where problems of one sort or another make the provision of DTT difficult. Satellite TV is the obvious solution. 
The time may well come when it is wondered why anyone bothered with DTT. Signal quality is becoming an increasingly important factor as the digital roll out continues. In areas where the signal is marginal, viewers could experience the extreme irritation of picture break up or complete loss like even todays. This is quite apart from the actual quality of the channel, which depends on the number of bits per second used. There is a maximum number of bits per multiplex, the total being shared by several channels. The fewer the bits, the poorer the picture in terms of definition and rendering. 

There have already been complaints about poor quality. The question of domestic arrangements is one that has not so far received adequate public attention. Most households 2000 nowadays don't have just one TV set that the family watches. They have a main one, probably, almost certainly one or more VCRs, and several other sets around the house to serve various purposes. What 'the percentage of households that have digital TV' should really mean is the percentage willing to replace all this equipment. It will be expensive, and people would not be happy if they were told to throw away their other equipment when they get a single nice new all  singing all dancing widescreen digital TV set. It fact there would be uproar. The move from analogue to digital is not like that from 405 to 625 lines, which went fairly smoothly.

In those days few people had video equipment or a multitude of sets. The transition to digital is not going to be smooth, and the suggestion of a switch off during 2006-2010 already looks totally unrealistic. Unless the government subsidises or gives away digital TV sets - and why should it? - people will expect their existing equipment to continue to be usable.  

So it's likely that analogue TV will be with us for many years yet. But that would be the end of analogue too. 

.............................Indeed...............................


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Panasonic Corporation ( Panasonikku Kabushiki-gaisha) (TYO: 6752, NYSE: PC), formerly known as Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd. ( Matsushita Denki Sangyō Kabushiki-gaisha), is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics corporation headquartered in Kadoma, Osaka, Japan. Its main business is in electronics manufacturing and it produces products under a variety of names including Panasonic and Technics. Since its founding in 1918, it has grown to become the largest Japanese electronics producer. In addition to electronics, Panasonic offers non-electronic products and services such as home renovation services. Panasonic was ranked the 89th-largest company in the world in 2009 by the Forbes Global 2000 and is among the Worldwide Top 20 Semiconductor Sales Leaders !

History

Panasonic was founded in 1918 by Konosuke Matsushita first selling duplex lamp sockets. In 1927, it produced a bicycle lamp, the first product it marketed under the brand name National. It operated factories in Japan and other parts of Asia through the end of World War II, producing electrical components and appliances such as light fixtures, motors, and electric irons.
After World War II, Panasonic regrouped and began to supply the post war boom in Japan with radios and appliances, as well as bicycles. Matsushita's brother-in-law, Toshio Iue founded Sanyo as a subcontractor for components after WWII. Sanyo grew to become a competitor to Panasonic.

Name

For 90 years since establishment, the name of the company was always topped with ("Matsushita"). The company's name before 1 October 2008 had been "Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd.", used since 1935.
In 1927, the company founder adopted a brand name "National" ( National) for a new lamp product, knowing "national" meant "of or relating to a people, a nation."[5] In 1955, the company labeled its export audio speakers and lamps "PanaSonic", which was the first time it used its "Panasonic" brand name.
The company began to use a brand name "Technics" in 1965.[6] The use of multiple brands lasted for some decades.[6]
In May 2003, the company put "Panasonic" as its global brand, and set its global brand slogan, "Panasonic ideas for life."[7] The company began to unify its brands to "Panasonic" and, by March 2004 replaced "National" for products and outdoor signboards, except for those in Japan[7].
On January 10, 2008, the company announced that it would change its name to "Panasonic Corporation" (effective on October 1, 2008) and phase out the brand "National" in Japan, replacing it with the global brand "Panasonic" (by March 2010). The name change was approved at a shareholders' meeting on June 26, 2008 after consultation with the Matsushita family. Panasonic owns RCTI, Global TV and MNC TV.

Electronics

In 1961, Konosuke Matsushita traveled to the United States and met with American dealers. Panasonic began producing television sets for the U.S. market under the Panasonic brand name, and expanded the use of the brand to Europe in 1979.
The company used the National trademark outside of North America during the 1950s through the 1970s. (The trademark could not be used probably due to discriminatory application of trademark laws where brands like General Motors were registrable.) It sold televisions, hi-fidelity stereo receivers, multi-band shortwave radios, and marine radio direction finders, often exported to North America under various U.S. brand names. The company also developed a line of home appliances such as rice cookers for the Japanese and Asian markets. Rapid growth resulted in the company opening manufacturing plants around the world. National/Panasonic quickly developed a reputation for well-made, reliable products.
The company debuted a hi-fidelity audio speaker in Japan in 1965 with the brand Technics. This line of high quality stereo components became worldwide favorites. The most famous product still made today is the SL-1200 record player, known for its high performance, precision, and durability. Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, Panasonic continued to produce high-quality specialized electronics for niche markets such as shortwave radios, as well as developing a successful line of stereo receivers, CD players, and other components.
Since 2004, Toyota has used Panasonic batteries for its Toyota Prius, an environmentally friendly car made in Japan.

On January 19, 2006 Panasonic announced that, starting in February, it will stop producing analog televisions (then 30% of its total TV business) to concentrate on digital TVs.
On November 3, 2008 Panasonic and Sanyo were in talks, resulting in the eventual acquisition of Sanyo. The merger was completed in December 2009, and resulted in a mega-corporation with revenues over ¥11.2 trillion (around $110 billion). As part of what will be Japan's biggest electronics company, the Sanyo brand and most of the employees will be retained as a subsidiary.
In November 1999, the Japan Times reported that Panasonic planned to develop a "next generation first aid kit" called the Electronic Health Checker. At the time, the target market was said to be elderly people, especially those living in rural areas where medical help might not be immediately available, so it was planned that the kit would include support for telemedicine. The kits were then in the testing stage, with plans for eventual overseas distribution, to include the United States.
In recent years the company has been involved with the development of high-density optical disc standards intended to eventually replace the DVD and the SD memory card.
On July 29, 2010 Panasonic reached an agreement to acquire the remaining shares of Panasonic Electric Works and Sanyo shares for $9.4 billion.

Panasonic and Universal

Panasonic used to own Universal Studios, then known as the Music Corporation of America, since acquiring the company in 1990 but sold it to Seagram in 1995. Universal Studios is now a unit of NBC Universal.



JAPAN IS STRANGE
Strange how situations change. It seems not so long ago that Japan and its industries, particularly electronics, could do no wrong. They taught us how to make cars and TV sets properly. They invested heavily and came up with a seem- ingly endless stream of desirable, innova- tive products. Both outsiders and insiders could see no end to this success story. We were told, by more than one leading Japanese electronics industrialist, that the 21st century would be the Japanese one, when Japan became predominant industri- ally and culturally. For the last couple of years the situation has been somewhat different. Japan is still the world's second largest economy, but the previous confidence has gone. The econo- my has stalled, and doesn't look like getting going again for some time. Profitability has become appalling, and the talk now is all of restructuring and job losses. Sony has announced that some 17,000 jobs will be lost worldwide, ten per cent of its workforce, while fifteen of its seventy factories are to be closed. Mighty Hitachi, whose activities span a much wider field and whose turnover is equivalent to over two per cent of Japan's gross domestic product, has launched a detailed review of its businesses. 6,500 of its 66,000 parent company employees are to be made redun- dant by March next year. On a consolidat- ed basis Hitachi is Japan's largest employ- er, with 330,000 staff. Businesses are to be dropped or reorganised. The story from Mitsubishi Electric is similar: there is to be a "sweeping restructuring of its portfolio of businesses". In the UK, the latest manifes- tation of this is the closure of Mitsubishi's VCR plant at Livingston. 14,500 jobs will go (8,400 in Japan) at Mitsubishi Electric, nearly ten per cent of the workforce. Other manufacturers who have announced poor results and restructuring recently include NEC, Matsushita, Sharp and Toshiba. It's all a long way since the time when, it seemed, all the Japanese had to do was to get the product right and produce more and more of it. Some of this was foreseeable. Markets reach saturation point; new products are not always a runaway success; if investment in new plant is excessive you end up with too much capacity; and so on. Then there is the fact that Japan is not isolated from econom- ic problems elsewhere: no economy that is heavily dependent on exports can be. But there are also more specific Japanese prob- lems. The banking system is beset by non- performing loans that Japanese bankers are reluctant to write off. The bubble economy of a few years ago, when asset values rose to unrealistic levels, collapsed. This is part of the cause of the banking system difficul- ties. Then there is the practice of cross - ownership, with firms owning substantial stakes in each other. This can work nicely when everything is doing well: when reces- sion looms, it aggravates the problems. Japan's unemployment rate hit a new high of 4.8 per cent (3.39m) in March, part- ly because of the corporate sector restructur- ing. Japanese industrialists hope to improve their profitability in the second half of the year, and will be helped by improved condi- tions in SE Asia. But it will be hard going, particularly to improve domestic market conditions. The Japanese have always had a high propensity to save. This increases when the economic climate is poor, with unemployment a threat. Right now Japanese consumers are saving rather than buying. No one seems to know how to alter their behaviour. There is also a demographic problem: the Japanese population is ageing. Japanese interest rates are negligible. So borrowing is not a problem. But conversely all those savings are bringing in little income. In the Western world interest rate changes often have a considerable impact on the economy. This economic tool is not available when interest rates are negligible. The Japanese have been advised to get their banking system sorted out, but that's not the sort of thing that can be done overnight. Right now the best opportunity for Japan seems to be to export its way out of its dif- ficulties, something that shouldn't be too difficult once worldwide expansion has resumed. But the high value of the yen is a drawback. From the economic viewpoint it's an extremely interesting situation, one in which the laws of economics have little to offer. This could be because such laws are, basically, descriptive rather than prescrip- tive. In the real world you can't always ini- tiate economic activity through monetary or fiscal means. Some commentators have gone so far as to suggest that the Japanese government should spend, spend, spend and print money to kick-start the economy. This is a dangerous course that can go badly wrong. It has already been tried by the Japanese government to a limited extent, with similarly limited success. The one thing that we do know is that economies are not stable. Change is ever present in one form or another. The prob- lem lies in trying to control it. This is all rather humbling, and certainly something of a comeuppance for the rather arrogant Japanese industrialists who had talked about the century of Japanese economic hegemony.




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