The first videocassette recorder, or VCR, was the Sony VO-1600, introduced in 1971. Using Sony’s proprietary U-Matic 3/4-inch tape cassette, the heavy and expensive device had a counter but no timer, a problem rectified the following year when Philips released the N1500, which played 1/2-inch tape cassettes and cost about half as much as the VO-1600. Another 1972 entrant into the VCR market was CartriVision, whose devices were built into console TVs and played pre-recorded square cassettes that could only be rewound at video-rental stores (in other words, you could only watch a tape once). Even though the entertainment systems were sold in Sears, the company folded in just a year.

In 1975, Sony unveiled its first Betamax VCR, the LV-1901. With a retail price of $2,300, the device was bundled with a 19-inch television and had two tuners, which meant you could watch TV on one station and record a show on another. Although the quality of Betamax tape and Sony’s equipment was regarded by many to be high, the format lost out to VHS, which was introduced in 1976 by Japanese electronics manufacturer JVC. Unlike Betamax tapes, which ran for just one hour, the first VHS cassettes ran for two, which made the new format attractive to consumers and movie studios alike. In addition, JVC licensed its technology to all the major electronics manufacturers, forcing Sony to go it alone with Betamax. But by 1988, even Sony would be making VHS machines.

Best of the Web (“Hall of Fame”)

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob

The Vintage Knob is an extensive resource on all types of audio electronics organized by manufacturer, from Aiwa to… [read review or visit site]

Other Great Reference Sites

Most watched eBay auctions    

Jvc Hr-s8000u Digital Super S-vcr 4-head Hi-fi Stereo ~ Free ShippingPanasonic Dmr-es40v Dubbing Dvd Recorder Player Vhs Vcr Combo W/ RemoteFunai Zv427fx4 Combination Vcr And Dvd Recorder Magnavox Zv427mg9 Dvd Recorder/vcr Combo--hdmi Out, 1080p Up-conversionJvc Sr-dvm600u Vcr; Mini Dv,dvd Original Owner/operator RefurbishedSony Rdr-vx515 Dvd Recorder, Hi-fi Stereo Vhs Vcr ComboCasio Tv/cable/vcr Remote Control Alarm Chronograph Watch Sony Rdr-vxd655 Dvd/vcr Combo Player / Recorder- Hdmi Digital Tv Tuner Sony Evo-550h Professional 8mm/hi8 Hi-fi Stereo Vcr W/jog ShuttleRidgid Kollmann Seesnake Monitor & VcrJvc High-end Hr-s6900u High Resolution Super Vhs Svhs Vcr Pro Video EditingSony Slv-d360p Dvd Player Vhs Vcr Recorder Combo - Tested Working!Magnavox Dv220mw9 Dvd Vcr Vhs Combo Player Excellent Condition! Used Panasonic Dmr-es30v Vhs Vcr/dvd Recorder Combo Dubbing Video Transfer With Tuner8 Maxell Bronze 6hr & 1 Tdk Revue 8hr Vhs Tapes Video Vcr Blank SealedToshiba M454 4-head Vcr Video Cassette Player W/ Remote Control Vc-454 & CableSony Gv-d200 Digital8 Hi8 Player Recorder Vcr DeckVtg Sony Sl-hf900 Super Beta Hi-fi Video Cassette Recorder BetamaxSansui Vhf6010d Stereo Vhs Vcr Video Cassette Player W/ Remote 07660ca010 & CordSylvania Dvc850c Dvd Vcr Combo 623929 E10Panasonic Pv-4308 Vhs Vcr Video Cassette Player W/ Remote Vsqs1241 & Av CabaleFunai Zv427fx4 Combination Vcr And Dvd Recorder Beta Betamax Lot 2 Pre-recorded Used Blank Videotapes Tapes Sold As Blanks Samsung V2000x1xaa Dvd Vcr Player 625511 B21Panasonic Dmr-ez48v, Dvd Recorder With Hi/fi Vcr, Up Conversion (used)Samsung Vr8609 Stereo Vhs Vcr Video Cassette Player W/ Remote 10343a & Av CableMagnavox Dv220mw9 Dvd Vcr PlayerSony Zenith Betamax Vr-9800 Vcr /player W/tuner Vrt-9850 BetaEmerson Dvd Recorder / VcrPanasonic Pv-d4742 Dvd/vcr 4 Head Hi-fi Stereo Vhs Player W Remote And Av CableToshiba Sd-v392sua Dvd Player Vcr Combo Recorder & Original Remote Works Sony Sl-hf300 Beta Hi-fi Betamax - TestedEmerson Ewd2202 Dvd Vcr 4 Head Hi Go Stereo Combo Player Recorder Sylvania Dvc-840f Hi-fi Vhs Cassette Recorder Vcr Cd/dvd Player Combo W/ Remote+Vintage 1980's Beta Tape Betamax 30 Videotape Lot Videos Beta's Tapes Sony L-750Rca Vcr Vr633 Hf Vhs With Remote And Manual - Tested Works.Ridgid Seesnake Sewer Camera Monitor With Vcr RecorderSamsung Dvd-vr357 Recorder Dvd Player / Vcr Combo /hdmi Panasonic Omnivision 4 Head, Hi Fi Stereo Vcr Vhs Player Pv 9450, Remote, ManualMagnavox Dv220mw9 Dvd Vcr Combo Vhs Recorder / Dvd Player Excellent!Beta Betamax Lot Trek Pre-recorded Used Blank Videotapes Tapes Sold As Blanks Beta Betamax Lot 1 Pre-recorded Used Blank Videotapes Tapes Sold As Blanks Sharp 13" Tv/vcr ComboEmerson Ewv404 VcrEmerson Vhs To Dvd Recorder Player Vcr Zv427em5 New Hdmi 1080pNew Panasonic Pv-v462 Vhs Vcr In BoxEmerson Ewd2203 4 Head Vhs Vcr, Dvd Player Combo W/remoteToshiba Sd-v291 Hi-fi Sqpb Vhs Cassette Recorder Vcr & Cd/dvd Player Combo WorksMemorex Mvd4543 Combo Dvd Vcr Player Vhs Recorder 6 HeadNishika 35mm 3-d N8000 Camera/case/flash/vcr NewPhilips Dvp3345vb Dvd Player / Vcr ComboPhilips Dvp3345v/17 Dvd Vcr Combo Player 4-head Hi-fi Vhs Recorder & RemotePanasonic ~ Hi Fi Stereo Omnivision 4 Head Vcr Vhs Player,pv 9450 W / RemoteSharp Viewcam Vl-e665u 8mm Video Tape Player.playback Vcr TransferPanasonic Pv-4561 Stereo Vhs Vcr Video Cassette Player W/ Remote Vsqs1411 & CordLot Of 10 Fuji S-vhs Tapes Sold For Blanks One Pass Recording Vcr Video T-160'sStar Wars Betamax Hi-fi Video CassetteNew Mega House Dragon Ball Gals Bulma Bunny Girl Ver.vcrToshiba Dvd/vcr Combo Sd-v296-k-tu Dvd Vhs Player No RemoteVintage Quasar 13" Tv With Vcr No Remote