View Full Version : Last television using ultra sonic remote


duckland 23
10-29-2013, 09:25 AM
I was wondering what was the last year that the tv company's last used ultra sonic remote control in there televisions .Did any of the Japanese companies like sony, Panasonic use ultra sonic remotes or was that just the American made sets using ultra sonic .I was some history on ultra sonic .Why did they stop using them in televisions .

zeno
10-29-2013, 09:40 AM
I think the JP sets all used ultrasonics but we didnt
see many. Most were low priced sets. It added abt $100
to the price. Zenith sold the most followed by RCA.
Zenith went IR about 1981, I will look & see if I can
find the date. As for last to use ultras its prob one of
the cheapo brands.

73 Zeno

Celt
10-29-2013, 11:37 AM
I had a Fony in the 80's that used an ultrasonic remote.
Jingling of keys or pocket change would cause the set to change channels, volume or turn off.

radiotvnut
10-29-2013, 12:41 PM
Zenith was the most recent one that I've seen, as recent as '81. I had a 13" Sampo from '79 that used an IR remote; so, I'd guess '79-'81 was when most companies started switching over. The reason ultra-sonic remotes went away because TV's that used this system were easier to falslely trigger than a set with IR remote.

Celt
10-29-2013, 03:34 PM
Oh yeah...my niece was a toddler at the time and her "screams" would cause the set to go crazy.

Robb
10-29-2013, 03:53 PM
Is this Zenith Space command I have considered Ultra Sonic ?
It is mechanical correct ?


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Electronic M
10-29-2013, 04:59 PM
I believe those are ultrasonic....I have the RAT version of that remote BTW.

andy
10-29-2013, 05:17 PM
Zenith made sets with an ultrasonic remote that had on screen display, and a full numeric key pad on the remote.

Adam
10-29-2013, 05:21 PM
The newest ultrasonic remote sets I've had are a '79 Zenith 19" color set that used the ultrasonic remote, and an '81 RCA 13" color set that used the electronic ultrasonic remote, also a '78 RCA CTC-92 console.

I'd like to find a late model b/w Zenith with a remote, the newest I've had was a '71 (which I don't have anymore and wish I'd kept), the newest I have now is a '66.

radiotvnut
10-29-2013, 05:57 PM
I'd say '71 would be about the end of the road for any kind of remote B&W set.

Eric H
10-29-2013, 06:02 PM
Is this Zenith Space command I have considered Ultra Sonic ?
It is mechanical correct ?



It's ultrasonic but it's not mechanical, it's done electronically.

I had a 79 RCA 13" color set with a 4 button ultrasonic remote, also electronic.

zeno
10-29-2013, 06:26 PM
[QUOTE=Robb;3085886]Is this Zenith Space command I have considered Ultra Sonic ?
It is mechanical correct ?

As said its ultra but not mechanical. You can tell by the screen
in front of the "speaker". IR's either had LED's on the front or
a plastic cover. IIRC the first Zenith IR was the thin one with
a J battery. Used that style a long time.
BTW the hand units sold for $25 with dud.

73 Zeno:smoke:

Robb
10-29-2013, 06:44 PM
That's what I thought because my remote does not make a clicking sound !

Jon A.
10-29-2013, 08:37 PM
I have a Zenith System 3 ultrasonic remote in black with a button that toggles the on-screen channel/time indicator, but there's no RAT keypad. That's likely the newest Zenith ultrasonic remote I have. I have three others in the same form factor, one with a zoom button, two of them are dark brown, one is gray.

I was speaking with someone who said she once had a cable box that would change channels when a door was slammed or the guy upstairs would stomp his foot. She thought there was something wrong with it and dumped it. Now she knows that wasn't the case.

bgadow
10-29-2013, 10:41 PM
Robb, one way to test that remote is to push the buttons around your nearest cat...my tomcat really doesn't like the sound they make!

radiotvnut
10-29-2013, 11:10 PM
My uncle had a circa 1980 Zenith console (9-160 module) that used an ultrasonic remote with a power button, channel up, channel down, volume up, volume down, and mute. The set had OSD and a RAT keyboard, behind a door on the front of the TV.

Jon A.
10-31-2013, 03:10 PM
My uncle had a circa 1980 Zenith console (9-160 module) that used an ultrasonic remote with a power button, channel up, channel down, volume up, volume down, and mute. The set had OSD and a RAT keyboard, behind a door on the front of the TV.
That's what two of my remotes have. I didn't know that remotes lacking a RAT keypad were supplied with TVs that do have one.

Captainclock
12-24-2013, 02:13 PM
I know that Sony (or Somy if you watch enough anime to notice that anime producers subsitute one letter out on name brand products to avoid the copyright issue) used utlrasonic remotes on their Trinitron TVs up until the late 1980s.
I know because my aunt lived in an old house in Fort Wayne, Indiana for a while that used to be owned by an older gentleman that when he moved out left a lot of stuff behind including a 1987 vintage Sony Trinitron Color Television that had the old push-button style tuner (the one where you had to use a special plastic "screwdriver" to set the channels), and it had its original Ultrasonic Remote with it and it took 2 "AA" batteries to run it and it had a power button, channel up and down, volume up and down, and a mute button.

Jon A.
12-24-2013, 07:22 PM
Interesting, I have a Sony ultrasonic remote with four vertically arranged round buttons for power, volume, VHF and UHF. Got to wonder what period that is from. My 1987 Trinitron has fully electronic tuning and uses an infrared remote.

zeno
12-25-2013, 08:03 PM
Interesting, I have a Sony ultrasonic remote with four vertically arranged round buttons for power, volume, VHF and UHF. Got to wonder what period that is from. My 1987 Trinitron has fully electronic tuning and uses an infrared remote.
I remember those, mid to late 70's IIRC.

73 Zeno:smoke:

wa2ise
12-25-2013, 09:56 PM
I know someone who used to work for RCA around 1980. RCA was wanting to make an IR based remote, and the people at the manufacturing design location in Indy designed a big circuit that essentially took the ultrasonic signals and instead of using an acoustic ultrasound maker, modulated the IR LED with the same signals. My friend designed a remote that used a simple low power microprocessor, a "COPS" chip IIRC. That chip was programmed to produce digitally coded IR modulation with the IR LED. His needed only one chip, and a bunch of buttons and an IR LED, vs the other design that had tons of parts in it. Indy didn't want to use my friend's design, as it was "not invented here". Well, there was a shootout of sorts done with a pair of TVs and associated remote designs out in the parking lot on a sunny day. My friend didn't think either would work, but his did work well, and the other design failed badly... And my friend's design was much cheaper to make.
http://www.wa2ise.com/radios/rcaremote.jpg
This was that remote, it was big, but nearly empty. It was big as they expected it needed to be, to house all the stuff of the other design. And they weren't going to toss 100,000 of these cases they already made...

ChrisW6ATV
12-26-2013, 02:30 AM
Interesting, I have a Sony ultrasonic remote with four vertically arranged round buttons for power, volume, VHF and UHF. Got to wonder what period that is from. My 1987 Trinitron has fully electronic tuning and uses an infrared remote.
I bought the high-end Sony Profeel monitor and tuner in early 1982, and they used an infrared remote control. So, at least their top-of-the-line equipment was already IR as of 1981-82.

Reece
12-27-2013, 02:21 PM
I had a 1979 Sylvania with ultrasonic remote: channel up/down, volume up/down, mute, on/off. Channels were selected by a motor-operated turret tuner. After a while we had upgraded cable so it sat on channel 3 all the time anyway. Jingling keys or the vacuum cleaner would make it change channels.

sampson159
01-11-2014, 09:41 PM
i had a 1980 superset with remote that was the same way.

Fairlane500skyliner
07-25-2014, 04:10 AM
Robb, one way to test that remote is to push the buttons around your nearest cat...my tomcat really doesn't like the sound they make!

Our dogs absolutely HATE the sound of an ultra-sonic remote! The sound must really hurt their ears or something! :sing:

Chris

Jon A.
07-25-2014, 10:58 AM
I have a Zenith 852-240 ultrasonic remote tester. It's supposed to be hooked to a frequency counter but it's fine on its own for basic testing as it has a LED that lights with sound detection.

zenith2134
08-07-2014, 10:56 PM
Hey
Late to the thread!
Alls I know is that the RCA chassis CTC-97 has a 2 or 3 button ultrasonic remote. Mine's from 1980. It has been in storage for a few years, after I replaced the delay line and did some other basic chassis work to it. It was a thrift find and made a great pic after some surgery to the circuitry. I had some great screenshots of it, but they are not accessible due to the server crash, and the fact that I delete the 'masters'.
I have never seen any brand tv with an ultrasonic remote control, past 1980.

zenith2134
08-07-2014, 10:59 PM
Contrast this with Zenith and Panasonic. I have owned examples of both with IR remotes from 81 ad 82 respectively. Remember the Panny 19" set with the IR remote which popped into the front of the front bezel? It was a ColorPilot. That was a cool set I shouldn't have trashed. Or the 1981 Zenith 19" with the green LED channel readout and the early 'computer space command' silver remote, which pre-dated the early 80s Zeniths with the yellow LED channel numbers. The latter sets had a slightly different remote and had the controls behind a door which covered the entire right side of the tv's front.

Jon A.
08-08-2014, 10:31 PM
Hey
Late to the thread!
Alls I know is that the RCA chassis CTC-97 has a 2 or 3 button ultrasonic remote. Mine's from 1980. It has been in storage for a few years, after I replaced the delay line and did some other basic chassis work to it. It was a thrift find and made a great pic after some surgery to the circuitry. I had some great screenshots of it, but they are not accessible due to the server crash, and the fact that I delete the 'masters'.
I have never seen any brand tv with an ultrasonic remote control, past 1980.
I saw pics of a CTC-97 set that uses a four-button ultrasonic remote with separate volume up and volume down buttons that also control power on and off. Other than the control panel it was identical to my 1978 CTC-88 set.

I've seen three-button electronic ultrasonic remotes from about that era I guess, and I saw a two-button clicker from I have no idea when, but it had the newer RCA logo.
Contrast this with Zenith and Panasonic. I have owned examples of both with IR remotes from 81 ad 82 respectively. Remember the Panny 19" set with the IR remote which popped into the front of the front bezel? It was a ColorPilot. That was a cool set I shouldn't have trashed. Or the 1981 Zenith 19" with the green LED channel readout and the early 'computer space command' silver remote, which pre-dated the early 80s Zeniths with the yellow LED channel numbers. The latter sets had a slightly different remote and had the controls behind a door which covered the entire right side of the tv's front.
Just recently I saw a pic of a 1984 13" screen Panasonic with a remote slot. Looked a lot like a 19" screen Panasonic we had briefly before I had any control of TVs that were going in and out of my place. Not sure if that had a remote slot though. I'm familiar with both types of Zenith remotes mentioned, I have a NOS silver ultrasonic unit with Space Phone. It was either that or a zoom button I've noticed.

Rod Beauvex
10-24-2014, 02:03 PM
My parents had a 19/20" Mitsubishi that had a 6 button ultrasonic remote. Made in the late seventies or early eighties.

Jon A.
10-24-2014, 04:31 PM
My parents had a 19/20" Mitsubishi that had a 6 button ultrasonic remote. Made in the late seventies or early eighties.
Not surprisingly, I have one of those remotes. It was an early addition to the collection though. I recently found a slightly older MGA/Mitsubishi remote.

Labrat
10-26-2014, 05:19 AM
I have a Thorn CTV Model 9041 (Mitsubishi Q Chassis).
It has Ultrasonic Remote Control. I bought this set to get the very early VCR that came with it. I was surprised to find that it had an Ultrasonic Remote Control. This set must be from about 1980? The same remote control was used in all of their Ultrasonic Remote Control TV's.

The only problems we had with this model of remote control were
1. broken wires to the oscillator coil from when it was dropped.
2. The occosonal broken brass switch contact.

If one were careless when repairing one of these, one would get a nasty bite from the 100 volts across the ultrasonic transducer. The neon behind the red window, fires at about 90V.

Sorry about the poor quality picture of the remote. The cameras in telephones are not very good.

Wayne.

Fairlane500skyliner
10-26-2014, 06:01 AM
I have a Thorn CTV Model 9041 (Mitsubishi Q Chassis).
It has Ultrasonic Remote Control. I bought this set to get the very early VCR that came with it. I was surprised to find that it had an Ultrasonic Remote Control. This set must be from about 1980? The same remote control was used in all of their Ultrasonic Remote Control TV's.

The only problems we had with this model of remote control were
1. broken wires to the oscillator coil from when it was dropped.
2. The occosonal broken brass switch contact.

If one were careless when repairing one of these, one would get a nasty bite from the 100 volts across the ultrasonic transducer. The neon behind the red window, fires at about 90V.

Sorry about the poor quality picture of the remote. The cameras in telephones are not very good.

Wayne.

I had a Thorn 34T3 (really a re-badged Mitsubishi) that used one of these. It was pretty good little set to use, though the dogs didn't quite approve of the remote... :no:

Chris

Jon A.
10-26-2014, 09:55 AM
I have a Thorn CTV Model 9041 (Mitsubishi Q Chassis).
It has Ultrasonic Remote Control. I bought this set to get the very early VCR that came with it. I was surprised to find that it had an Ultrasonic Remote Control. This set must be from about 1980? The same remote control was used in all of their Ultrasonic Remote Control TV's.

The only problems we had with this model of remote control were
1. broken wires to the oscillator coil from when it was dropped.
2. The occosonal broken brass switch contact.

If one were careless when repairing one of these, one would get a nasty bite from the 100 volts across the ultrasonic transducer. The neon behind the red window, fires at about 90V.

Sorry about the poor quality picture of the remote. The cameras in telephones are not very good.

Wayne.
That's the same as mine other than the name.

Rod Beauvex
10-26-2014, 12:59 PM
The remote for my parents set looked about like that, and if I remember right, one side of it did not work.