March 1963 Radio-Electronics
[Table of Contents]
Wax nostalgic about and learn from the history of early electronics.
See articles from Radio-Electronics,
published 1930-1988. All copyrights hereby acknowledged.
CRT Picture Tube Brightness Boosters
Upon first seeing the comic on page 93, I thought it was a slam on the repair
technician considering himself as smart and talented as a brain surgeon, or maybe
charging rates comparable to that of a brain surgeon. Then I noticed what was inside
the room he was preparing to enter, hence it made sense (at least if you are
privy to the lingo of the day). The page 71 comic depicts a scenario that would
have been considered extreme in 1963, but is commonplace today - particularly in
SUV type vehicles. Of course now you can add a video player to the speakers. You
really need to have knowledge of the TV world to get the page 104 comic. Since
almost nobody alive would know what is going on, I'll provide the gag line. Magazines
of the era, both electronics industry titles like
Radio & Television News and
Popular Electronics, and household titles Better Housekeeping
and Readers' Digest, commonly contained advertisements for amplifier gizmos
that plugged in between the CRT (cathode ray tube) and the socket from the electronics
chassis. Said devices claimed to restore dimmed pictures to their former vibrancy.
They probably worked to some extent. The comic shows a cascade of at least four,
with the lady offering yet another to add to the chain.
"There you are ... stereo for back-seat drivers." (p71)
"The brain surgeon is here again." (p93)
"No, ma'am, there just ain't anything left to brighten." (p104)
Posted May 25, 2023