RCA TVs (1939, 1946)


Note: Move the mouse pointer over an image to view an enlarged and/or alternate photo.

 

1939 RCA TT-5

Pre-war tabletop TV (about the size of an RCA 621).

This TV "picture receiver" has a five-inch CRT and a five-channel tuner.

A similar TV (with slightly different cabinet design) was sold by Westinghouse and Sears.

History: A history of this TV is being prepared by the family of the original owner and will be added to this page in the near future.

Audio Reception: This TV connects to a radio with a TV audtio input (such as the RCA T-62, 16T3, T-80, or T-55 (my favorite) for audio reception.

I may seek one of the radios noted above in the future.

Replica Back Panel: Below is a photo of the replica back with help from ETF and my family's handyman.

Early TVs Used in Hollywood Movies: Below is a photo from Bowery at Midnight (1942 with Bela Lugosi and produced by Monogram Pictures) showing an RCA TT-5.

Bela Lugosi appeared in three Hollywood films with a television theme: International House (1931), Murder by Television (1935), and Bowery at Midnight (1942)

Advertisement: Below is an 1939 RCA advertisement.

Another 1939 Two-Page RCA Ad

 

1939 RCA TRK-12

This beautiful pre-war TV was the set that introduced television to the public at the 1939 New York world's fair. (I think the model at the world's fair actually had a transparent cabinet.)

Some 1,500 of these sets were manufactured, but only about 60 survive. I don't have the money to own more than one or two pre-war sets, so I thought about which set I considered to be the nicest (regardless or rarity) and this is one of only two sets that made my list.

As seen in the photo at the left, this TRK-12 has an oil-filled magnifier attachment that enlarges the projected image on the lid's mirror. The previous owner isn't sure whether this magnifier was specifically designed for the RCA TRK-12, but it looks and fits like it might have been.

 

1946 RCA 621

This early 7" tabletop TV was reportedly designed in 1941, but WWII stopped production. The set was produced for only a month or so in 1946, and then RCA's model 630 (with its 10-inch screen) superseded the model 621.

This set has been restored to working condition.

This model has the dark mahogany cabinet (refinished). A walnut cabinet and blonde cabinet were also produced.

 

Return to top of page