why was 'solid state' on old appliances?

Looking at my home full of 1970s appliances/electronics i see a label that i find funny. but i wonder why it was plastered all over them?


It's on every one. even twice on some. why? Was it really that much of a selling point to tell customers their electronics didn't have tubes?

Isn't the label a cop-out on the old CRTs of that decade (since the picture tube is still a vacuum tube? the magnetron in my 'solid state' microwave?)
isn't it a tad misleading to put such a label on a CRT Television, as the picture 'tube' is a vacuum tube, making the TV anything BUT solid state?

The Magnetron inside a microwave oven is a vacuum tube, so why does my 1970s relic Kenmore 1400-watt microwave oven have that label?

I wouldn't say it was more reliable, however, as vacuum tubes were an easy user-replaceable component--like replacing a small light bulb. on 'solid state' appliances the failure usually forces a replacement and adds to garbage in landfills and planned obselescence that i firmly refuse to accept.

there are a lot of old things from the tube era that still work; but how many LCD TVs do you suppose will still work after 50 years?

If homes were still modular-built and had the applIances built-into woodwork, kitchen counters flipping over revealing stovetops while serving also as counter-space when not used (you have to admit, the 1960s had something!) the reasoning behind smaller packages would not only be moot, but also a second plus in selling such house in having the appliances reused by their new owner (as they're permenant fixtures) would not only save money buying new appliances, but also save landfill space.

it was a futuristic design which sadly died off in the 1970s when people bought desktop appliances and then in the 80s got into the throwaway mentality that needs to end ASAP. bring back pride in American-manufacturing and large, well-made, long lasting appliances to last generations! in today's recession, possibly caused by our 'keeping up with the joneses'' lifestyles, it's time to bring that back!

i will never understand why people always insist on the latest and greatest, especially when what they had served its purpose and the same job in the first place. i mean an 8-Track can play music, an MP3 player can play music? what exactly is the improvement? even 8-track players were portable! and recorders can easily have new music transferred to them! yes, even from a PC (they have line-out, don't they?)

What is so good about a TV that is made with a pre-determined lifespan? Which is only until the power dims or lightning hits it(or the warranty expires)? what is so bad about a TV that can live through anything, but gets tossed into the garbage--still working fine, because someone next door bought a flat panel?!

why is buying a new Dolby Digital stereo so important when that old Nixie Tube display 8-track/phono/stereo/aux system with 4 speakers can do the same thing? why are these wonderful appliances tossed into landfills just because of their age? when most still work fine?!

When you think about it, it's not so 'green' when you consider how many old appliances--most still working and superior in manufacturing (when quality control existed), are tossed into landfills--pollution, and replaced with so-called 'energy efficient' replacements. landfills are possibly worse than using the appliances that were tossed. our earth is finite in space you know.
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Also, a lot of vintage solid state equipment works great....and is also repairable....even 50 year old radios and amplifiers and receivers.

Just because it was easy to see that a tube had burnt out, and easily replaceable, isnt really a selling point....when they burn out so frequently.

However I do wish more stuff was easily repairable, this throw away society, Im not a fan of.

Im an antiquarian.
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it was my own great grandfather who got me so interested in the pride of your things and added pride in making the old TV, one he lived with for 20 years and then quit, suddenly power up again. there's no feeling in the world that can replace that pride--in fixing the oven which caught fire due to a bad cord, and then once again seeing the old indicator bulbs light up again after a new $10 cord, wire nuts, and a little solder! it's wonderful.

Sadly, living completely retro isn't feasible...some things i had to buy upgrades to...my computer for example. or my DVD changer. or any replacement VCR or Videocassettes and my 8-track tapes. but it doesn't mean they have to be new. not only does buying used from a flea market save money from going overseas (and helping boost our economy by keeping it here in the USA) but it saves landfill space and also the resources are saved from constructing a new appliance of the same type. it helps me to live a 'green' lifestyle to reuse, repair, reduce, and recycle even old things, since no garbage, or earth is harmed by tossing and buying new items.

There was a Captain Planet and the Planetees episode which taught us that overconsumption by buying everything new consumes earth's resources--appliances don't just churn out of thin air, they pollute with manufacturing and also the metals, components need to be melted down from earth's elements and then put together...

i don't remember the name of that episode but all i can say is 'GO, Planet!' with reusing and never tossing old things just because they're 'obsolete'; such a word doesn't exist in my vocabulary. also, the retro things were awesome in how they could do exactly what is done today with a lot less parts. it's just--neat...when i open up a flip clock i'm amazed in the simplicity of it while astounded in how much time was put into assembling each and every component, gear, rod, Motor winding....today's digital clocks are an overcomplicated abominiation that does the exact same thing! it's no improvement, just another form of display. i fail to ever see logic nor interest in anything brand new.

much less having it forced down people's throats as if diversity and freedom of choice means nothing anymore. how weak are the people when the government says that 'digital tv is superior' and forced that opinion on everyone? if it were 40 years ago the people would have stood up, shouted against such invasion of our freedoms...while today, people are in-assertive, and let the government walk all over them--so long as the US Gov is paying for it, why refuse? such a philosophy is working and that's scary...if the government gave us brand new electric vehicles for free (so long as we gave up our family cars) why would anyone say no? it's sick. twisted. and wrong.
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Sad to say, but that's the way society is now. I use to enjoy fixing, tinkering and working on things and still do when i'm able to, but heck i dont even change the oil in our cars anymore by the time i buy the oil and filter it's more than i could take them in somewhere and have it done. Same way with electronics, if something breaks or stops working most the time it's more economical to just buy a new one. It's a cycle of oversea's junk being made to throw away cause it dont last long.

Also our younger generation needs to get out of this instant gratification syndrome. I work with a lot of young people and it's amazing the attitude they have. Thier willing to pay more if they can have it now or cant wait a day for parts when they can run to the store and have a new one now. Everything has to be done or fixed now! Why wait or spend time fixing it when you can run and have it now. I've had washers, dryers, stoves, furnaces, auto's etc. down for days fixing them myself to save money and as mentioned above you'll get a sense of pride and happines knowing you've fixed it yourself and saved money to boot. But not many people like that nowdays.

I still try to fix anything i can myself before throwing it away and getting a new one, but unless we start making quality products with quality prices instead of importing this low cost junk i'm afraid nothing will change.



Fringe Reception

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Your mention of "Solid State" reminded me of my first transistor radio I received as a gift in 1967 or 1968. It was a Lloyd's "Solid State All Transistor Radio". Before that, I had a crystal radio set.

Speaking of old technology and our 'throw-away society' my 1951 Sears Coldspot refrigerator soliders on ... In fact, I have its original owner's manual and the salesman's business card! Yeah, my Folks were packrats too.
Jim :bolt:
i wouldn't buy new for two reasons. 1) It's all made to toss out eventually, with 'product lifecycles' and made with inferior (no offense, China, but it is for such a well-developed and intelligent country your imports SUCK!) and 2) there's no reason to when if i need say a new TV, i can easily find a 1978 model Quasar that works fine and for only $5 as opposed to $199 for a LCD Flat panel lucky to last a few years--used to be when you paid more you got more. not anymore. why does the replacement product have to be new? why is it so hard for folks to run down the the local thrift store and boost USA Economy with local sales and also keeping stuff out of our landfills (and refusing china's crappy imports at the same time) by buying things from those stores? the prices are super-cheap, and the age of most of the items are relatively new...

I Just prefer older because they were built well. if i bought a newer TV, even from the thrift store, it would still be shoddy construction.

the best way to bring back 'Made in USA' and quality built to last goods is to refuse china's imports with our all-mighty dollar. stop buying crap and start reusing the old stuff by buying from thrift stores. wal-mart needs to learn their lesson about defying Walton the hard way. if enough people stop supporting other countries our throwaway society would end and the pride and worth of our goods will increase as it once did 50 or so years ago when people didn't care about every little thing, style, gadget, or fashion.
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