Retrotechtacular: The Miracle Of Vacuum Tubes

We take our digital life for granted these days, but back in 1943 it was vacuum tubes, not transistors, which made it all possible. This video on the types and industrial uses of vacuum tubes was sent into the tips line by [Polar Bear]. The nearly 70-year-old video is part of a collection preserved by the New Jersey Amateur Radio Club.

The video was underwritten by Westinghouse, and as you can expect it has a bit of propaganda spin for the company. The time period in which the reel was produced is also telling. Coming about two years after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the applications for technology of the time are almost all military in focus. But we’re sure you’ll be entertained by both the film style and the tech explanation. It’s something of a How It’s Made of yesteryear. All twenty-one minutes of it are found embedded after the break.

5 thoughts on “Retrotechtacular: The Miracle Of Vacuum Tubes

  1. haha. this explains some of the ways valves work pretty well.
    i allways find it funny in old promotional films when they make out that their product is the best there is. shame that westinghouse valves were rubbish.
    i work with valve hifi and its still better than anything transistor based. =p
    cleaned up a nice old pair of dynatrons the other day that havnt seen the light of day since they were made, in the 40’s. changed the electrolytics and plugged it in and it was spot on first time. perfect.

    valves FTW!

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