A Message from the Author (revised March 2005)
|Back in the 1920's, Baird patented a few inventions
relating to recording television. He could not perfect
his recording method (which he called 'Phonovision')
for reliable playback and
consequently never demonstrated playback of pictures from these
discs. I feel truly honoured to be able to reveal what Baird had
recorded and what Baird was trying to achieve with Phonovision. But the discs reveal more than just the images.
Within the distorted signal on the discs is a wealth of
information which gives us an amazing insight into how these recordings were made and
the difficulties Baird encountered in his studio.
Although this is mostly a solo effort, I could not have achieved what I have without the help and encouragement from the many friends and pioneers involved with early television. They have given their information, assistance and support freely and for that I am immensely grateful.
If you would like to find out a little more about me, you might like to visit my home page.
|"The Dawn of
Made possible by the award of the Shiers Trust Grant for 2004, I have put together a reference work on a double-CD covering the early days of television in Britain, set into a world context. This, as you'll read elsewhere, is a two-hour in-depth audio documentary supported by over 300MBytes of supplementary audio and video material in CDROM format. Some 16 months of spare time in the making, this has involved the transfer of dozens of audio cassette and reel-to-reel tapes and the editing of them down from over 30GigaBytes to what you hear. Also, for the first time, I am releasing the entire collection of restored 30-line TV recordings made between 1927 and 1935 as a series of high bandwidth MPEG-1 files. Originally these were sourced from over 100Gigabytes of DVD quality material for a project that failed to attract sponsorship.
If I were to account financially for the manpower involved in putting this project together, the CDs would have an astronomical price tag - but this is my hobby, so you get all that for free! The support I've had for this project - all freely given - has been outstanding. Richard Baker (the BBC's first television news-reader who broadcast for over 28 years from 1954 and is still in broadcasting) took an interest in this project and very professionally narrated the documentary. I have also been honoured by the Royal Television Society generously allowing me access to their archives and also permitting me to reproduce the contents of the joint BBC/RTS publication by Bruce Norman "Here's Looking at You", which is included as a read-only Adobe Acrobat PDF file. This, and the generous contributions from many others, significantly enhances the value of the CD and makes it an essential purchase for anyone with access to a computer and an interest in those early days.
All material in this page is copyright ©DFMcLean 1998 except where specified.
|Last updated by Don McLean on 12th June 2004