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    

Panasonic Dmr-es35v Dvd Recorder / Vcr Combo With Dv Input Progessive Scan VideoToshiba Sd-v296 Dvd / Vcr Combo Player Nos In Box With RemoteJvc Dr-mv150b Dvd Recorder Vhs/svhs Atsc Tuner Upscale Hdmi VcrMini 5" Tft Lcd Car Monitor For Rear View Reverse Backup Camera Cctv Dvd VcrMagnavox Funai Dvd Recorder / Vcr Combo / Hdmi 1080p Rzv427fx4 Remote Sony Ev-s900 Vcr Hi8 Video Cassette Recorder Pro Edit Deck 8mmNew Casio Pathfinder Watch Paw-1500-1vcr Altimeter Barometer CompassMagnavox Mwd2206 Combo Dvd/vcr Player & Vhs Recorder With Remote Works GreatSylvania Srdv495 Dvd Recorder & Vcr/dvd Combo Player Copy Old Vhs TapesSony Ev-c3 Video8 8mm Video 8 Player Recorder Vcr -works! With RemoteMagnavox Vcr Dvd Recorder Vhs Zv457mg9 Hdmi 44795-o7Jvc Hm-dh30000u Dvhs D Theater VcrPanasonic Dmr-ez475v Dvd/vcr Combo Recorder Complete With Hdmi Upscaling/turnerJvc Hr-s9911u Svhs Super Vhs Hifi Professional VcrLg Rc797t Dvd Player / Recorder/ Vcr Combo / Digital Tv Tuner Sony Slv-d261p Combination Hi-fi Stereo Vhs Vcr & Progressive Scan Dvd PlayerMagnavox Dv220mw9 Home Combo Vhs/dvd/cd Player Video Movie Dolby Digital Vcr ASony Dsr-11 Ntsc Pal Dvcam Minidv Mini Dv Tape Player Recorder Vcr DeckSony Betamax Hi-fi Sl-hf400 Tape Recorder Player Beta Vcr W/ Remote Rmt-311Jvc Dr-mv99b Dvd Recorder Vcr Combo Hdtv Tuner Hdmi 1080 Sony Gv-a500 Hi8 Video Walkman Vcr Plays 8mm Video8 Mini Composite Rca Cvbs Av To Hdmi Converter Adapter F Vcr Dvd 720p1080p WadapteToshiba Hi-fi W614 Vcr Player 4 HeadsPanasonic Ag-w1 Vhs World Wide Vcr Pal Secam Ntsc Agw1 Worldwide Hi-fi *works*Samsung Combo Dvd Video Player Vcr Vhs Full Hd Hdmi 1080p Upconversion Dvd-v9800Sony Ev-s900 Vcr Hi8 Pro Edit Deck 8mm 4-headsVintage Sony Betamax Sl-hf400 Video Cassette Recorder WorkingVeratron Vc-600 Vhs-c Tape Cassette To Vhs Vcr Adapter New Old StockLot Of (5) Vcr's & (1) Dvd PlayerSony Slv-d300p Progressive-scan Dvd-vcr ComboHitachi Vtdx815a Dvhs Digital Vcr "made In Japan" "rare"Sony Sl-hfr70 Super Betamax W/original Box Instructions & Remote ControlSony Vcr Slv-757uc Video Cassette RecorderSony Vhs Slv-750hf 4head Hifi Vcr Player With Remote Box Manual & MoreToshiba M-454 Vhs Vcr Video Cassette Recorder Player 4 Head Pro Drum System7" Tft Color Lcd Car Rearview Dvd Vcr Backup Camera Display Monitor W/ Ir RemoteEmerson Model Ewv601 4 Head Hifi Stereo Vcr Vhs Player Tested No RemoteEasier Cap Usb Record Vcr Vhs Video To Pc Av S-video Dvd Usb 2.0Samsung Sv-5000w World Wide Video Vcr Ntsc Pal Secam Rare Htf Read Details!!Zenith Vr9775pt Vintage Beta Tape Vcr Betamax Recorder Player Tested WorkingPhilips Dvd750vr Dvd Player/vcr Combo - With Remote Control - Free Ups ShippingRare Beta/betamax Media Release Of Halloween,also With Alien&the Thing Included!Magnavox Vcr Vhs Cassette Player Hifi Mint Loaded! In Box With Remote Vr9262Admiral 13" Crt Tv Vcr Combo Tape Player Recorder Television Vhs Combination SetHalloween 2 Beta/betamax Rare Jvc Dr-mv1su Dvd Recorder & Cd Player Vcr Player Recorder Combo Video Transfer Sony Dsr-20 Dvcam Deck Dvhs Vcr - For PartsMitsubishi Vhs/vcr Player Hs-g21 4 Head Vcr (no Remote) Tested And Working3 In 1 Lens Cleaning Cleaner Dust Pen Blower Cloth Kit For Dslr Vcr Camera Vhs To Dvd Recorder, Video Dvd+vcr Dual Deck, Go-video Dv2130New In Box, Magnavox Dvd, 4 Head Vcr Combination, With Remote, Never OpenedToshiba Sd-v291 Dvd Vcr Combo Cd Vhs Tape Player Recorder Silver W Remote TestedZenith Xbr413 Dvd Recorder Vcr Vhs Combo Player Progressive Scan Toshiba Sd-r0227 New Remote For Dvd Recorder/vcr Ion Vcr 2 Pc Usb Video Conversion System Discontinued ModelSymphonic Color Tv/vcr Sc313b 13" Remote Manual Works Jvc Hr-fc100u Vhs Vhs-c Compact Vcr Player Recorder50 Ft Rg6 Coaxial Digital Av Cable For Satellite Tv Vcr Video OutdoorDry Vhs Vcr Tape Cleaner Magic NewJvc Super Vhs Et Plug & Play Hr-s29u Vcr Recorder