Jul 12, 2022 category

Akihabara, Tokyo has transformed over the years. In its present type Akihabara emerged from the ruins of a devastated Tokyo after world war 2 when the entire district was burnt to the ground. The area was rebuilt in the shadow of the Akiba Jinja (dedicated to the god of terminate prevention), as well as a new breed of street vendors began to appear. Huddling under the security of railway bridges, as well as dealing mainly in Black market radio parts, these vendors set a new tone to what would ended up being Japan’s “Electric Town”. as well as as Japanese producing prowess grew so as well did Akihabara.

Maids touting for business
Now of program Akihabara is likewise house to Otaku culture, as well as is maybe finest understood in this regard for its housemaid cafes. streets are littered with maids touting their cafes, somewhat incongruously among computer outlets as well as precision tooling stores.

My interests nevertheless lie squarely in Akihabara’s wonderful junk bins. Of all locations I believe I’m happiest  digging with this mass of discarded innovation from Japan’s producing past.

A excursion with the junks bins is like an archaeological dig. as well as in this post I will present some recent finds, as well as ponder on their relevance to Japanese manufacturing.

A 1960s age Japanese phone
The posterboy of early Japanese consumer electronics is the transistor radio. Unfortunately, these are progressively difficult to discover in Akihabara as well as never in the junk bins. The oldest piece of consumer electronics I’ve found discarded, as well as mainly unloved is this 1960s telephone.

The phone expense a rather extortionate 1980 Yen (16USD). There are some fantastic sites by Japanese collectors documenting the different colors as well as configurations of these handsets.

By the 1960s Japanese economic climate had well as well as genuinely boomed, having grown to the second largest in the world. Japan was pumping out transistorized consumer electronics. business having obtained licenses from AT&T for their production.

The phones interior layout
This telephone of program utilizes purely passive components, however still bears a few of the marks of miniaturization that came with this age of electronic development. The picture to the ideal shows the phone’s interior layout. especially in contrast with a British style of the exact same era. Amazingly, as well as a testament to worldwide standardization, I was still able to make a phone call with this phone. 6000 miles away from its meant point of use, as well as 55 years later the pulse dialing system still works on British Telecom’s network.


Our next product I discovered in the aptly named “SuperJunk“. one of my preferred junk shops. Superjunk brings an assortment of passive as well as active elements including discarded SMD reels. together with this, a lot more traditional, surplus Superjunk likewise holds a little stack of curios. as well as this is were I discovered the Vidicon cam shown below.

A “National” (now Panasonic) Vidicon camera
With the extensive adoption of CCD as well as CMOS imaging ICs Vidicons have long been forgotten. however for lots of years Vidicon tubes were the only method of electrically obtain images. A vacuum tube has a flat photoconductive surface. as well as electron beam is scanned across this surface, much like a CRT TV in buy to determine the conductivity across the surface as well as obtain an image.

This tube bares the Matsushita electric industrial Co. brand. A business now much better understood as Panasonic.

Boxes upon boxes of Laserdiscs
The Vidicon cam represents a relic from the full analogue world of 70s as well as early 80s electronics. Akihabara is littered as well with abandoned digital cameras (like this Ixy 60). however they add bit to our producing story. a lot more fascinating maybe are those products created ideal at the cusp of the analogue to digital transition.

Forgotten Digital-ish Formats

Junk shops like Hardoff are full of discard Laserdiscs. While you may believe of Laserdiscs as purely “big CDs” they are really a extremely different technology. like CDs, the info was encoded utilizing pits checked out by a laser head. However, the video encoding system utilized a type of pulse width modulation, encoding as well as replicating a purely analogue signal.

“The Repeater” a curious artifact of 90s technology
Hardoff was likewise house to our next item. one more hybrid analogue storage/digital playback gadget called “The Repeater“.

When I very first gotten The Repeater I had no concept what it was. A curious slot appeared to accept a magswipe card, however I had nothing much else to go on. After some headscratching I deduced that the gadget plays back analogue audio encoded on a magswipe card. It appears that special flashcards were offered as a discovering aid. Swipe a card on which a concern is printed as well as the gadget will playback an audIO הקלטה של ​​התשובה. המשחזר הוא מרתק לי מאז השמע נשמר כקלטת אנלוגית, אשר מיד דגימה דיגיטלית על ידי הגאדג ‘ט עבור השמעה (כך ניתן לחזור על עצמו אם נדרש). זה באמת הנקודה היחידה בזמן שבו טכניקה זו היה נלקח. מערכות דיגיטליות לא די זול מספיק לאחסון, עם זאת מסוגל לתפעל בהצלחה, כמו גם מערכי השמעה בקלות. בסרטון למטה, אתה יכול לצפות זה curio טכנולוגי בפעולה:

המשחזר הוא גם משמעותי כמו חתיכת האחרונה של מוצרי האלקטרוניקה על ג ‘אנק שלנו bin trawl המיוצר ביפן. בימים אלה הרוב הענק של מוצרי האלקטרוניקה הזמינים באקשברה מיוצרים (ומעוצבים לעתים קרובות) בסין. כמו כן, בעוד שהרדיו הטרנזיסטור היה סמל של הגידול של הייצור האלקטרוני הצרכני היפני, גיליתי שזה בלתי אפשרי לגלות רדיו צרכני חדש באקשברה המיוצר ביפן.

Anritsu comms Analyzer שהושג במשך כמה מאות דולרים
ציוד בדיקה

מחוץ אלקטרוניקה הצרכן Akihabara הוא הבית כדי לבדוק התקנים חנות Keisokuki קרקע. כאן אתה יכול לגלות הן המקומי כמו גם עודף זרים הבדיקה התקנים לעתים קרובות במחירים נמוכים מאוד. עד כה אני בחרתי, כמו גם תיקון 3 500MHz + 5GS / S אוסצילוסקופים עבור על פי 200USD טיפוסי. כל פגום בדרך כלשהי, תיקונים פשוטים.

לפעמים גם הרבה יותר סקרנות של מכשירים מקומיים מופיעים מדי. כמו Anritsu Analyzer תקשורת מוצג בצד ימין. זה אינדיקציה גרועה לייצר יפנית אולי, כי מוצרים אלה ביצועים גבוהים נראה להציע את הזול ביותר, עם ביטוח אזורי קצת.

Akihabara עבר התמקדות לאורך השנים, כמו גם לייצר יפנית אין ספק בירידה. עם זאת Akihabara עדיין מרגיש חזק כמו גם תוססת. יש כמו טכנולוגיה, עבור טכנולוגיות נהנות כאן כי ראיתי בשום מקום אחר. בעוד השווקים של שנזן עכשיו גמד Akihabara אלף לקפל, שנזן הוא כל העסק. Akihabara מלא otaku מונע על ידי הרצון לפרוץ. אפשר רק לשאול מה העתיד יביא.

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