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 Post subject: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 27 Mar 2019, 23:24 
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As a new(ish) joiner I thought I'd waffle on a bit...

I first saw LaserVision demonstrated on the British TV programme 'Tomorrow's World' when I was a schoolkid - probably around 1980. I then saw the players in shops - the stunning Philips VLP-700 and then the sophisticated Pioneer LD-1100. Unfortunately I couldn't persuade my parents to buy one!

However as a Doctor Who fan, when I saw a copy of the 'Brain of Morbius' disc on a rare trip to the London Virgin Megastore, I couldn't resist paying the princely sum of £19.99 for it - despite having no player.

LaserVision was on the wane. I had a Pioneer leaflet showing the futuristic LD-700, but, being still at school, there was no way I could afford £499 for that. And then a stroke of luck - a small hi-fi/video shop in my town was selling a secondhand VLP-700 for £59.99. Probably after much consultation with (and help from) my parents, I bought it and could finally watch my Doctor Who disc.

On limited funds I started building a small collection of discs - the other Doctor Who disc, the first three Star Trek films, a few music discs - Kate Bush, Queen, Pink Floyd.

The next big thing was CD-Video. Although I was no longer at school, I still couldn't afford the (I think) £499 for one of these players. When CD-Video itself began to wane, a local shop started selling the Marantz CV-55 for £199.

Reader, I bought one! And sold the VLP-700 to help pay for it. I was happy with the CV-55 - its RGB output was especially nice on my Sony TV. In the UK CD-Video was music-only though, no films or TV series were being released at all at this point - no wonder it wasn't really selling.

I became a subscriber to the excellent UK magazine "LaserDisc Review", and that started talking about a unique new Pioneer player, the CLD-1450 - the first ever PAL/NTSC player. Suddenly the whole US and Japanese disc catalogue would be available - more Doctor Who, more Star Trek, more everything! I was earning now, so I could afford one at full retail - although the £499 (why were they always £499?) stung a bit.

A local company, VideoWorld of Swanage, were doing a conversion to ensure that they played back 'true' NTSC instead of the standard transcoded version, so that's where I bought it. I sold the CV-55 to the same person that bought the VLP-700, and was quite content with my new player.

After a few years though, the miracle of 'play both sides' beckoned to me, and so did the smart Sony MDP-850D. I have a nasty feeling this cost £699, but I sold the CLD-1450 to offset it (to the same person who bought my CLD-1450, CV-55 and VLP-700!).

And that was it. I never had a huge collection of discs - maybe 50 or so? - more TV and music than films. DVD came along, I bought an early Sony player (DVP-S7700) and realised that this was the format for me. I kept the MDP-850D, but sold some discs as they were superseded by DVDs.

And that would have been it, except that I always regretted selling some of the earlier players, and also regretted not owning a few players I used to gaze at longingly in brochures and shop windows. A few years ago I bought a 'dead' VLP-700 for not much on eBay, hoping it might be an easy fix. Of course it wasn't - I think all VLP-700s are dead now.

I also got two of the dream machines from my schooldays - the Pioneer LD-1100 and LD-700. The first LD-700 from eBay was (as advertised) dead bar a flashing light, but perfect condition - then I bought another, fully working but battered, and combined the two to produce a mint condition working machine.

I also picked up a CLD-S310 and a CLD-1450 for £10 each from charity shops, and most recently a DVL-909 (smart but dead) and DVL-919 (battered but partially working), and have done the same trick again to produce a working smart 909. Rather late in the day, I can now freeze-frame CLV discs!

I don't do much with the machines now - they're just a curiosity in the spare room, I rarely watch a disc right through - but it's been fun tinkering with them. I don't think I'll buy any more, although if I could ever find a working Philips VLP-720 (which I don't think was ever sold in the UK) I'd be tempted :-)

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 Post subject: Re: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 28 Mar 2019, 00:33 
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An interesting "waffle" & thanks for that.

You may not use them much now but pretty sure you must enjoy them when you do spin the discs, great pictures.

Cheers :thumbup: .
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 Post subject: Re: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 28 Mar 2019, 01:07 
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Welcome! :D

what model is the Philips player in the middle on the left shelves?
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 Post subject: Re: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 28 Mar 2019, 03:22 
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I think “wotcha” is my biggest gripe about late period New Order. He uses the word too much now. Wotcha doing, wotcha thinking, wotcha gonna do, etc. Dude needs an editor or something.

It’s nice to have new members and anyone in PAL land is extra welcome since they come from such hard circumstances.
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 Post subject: Re: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2019, 18:28 
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xtempo wrote:
Welcome! :D what model is the Philips player in the middle on the left shelves?
Hi, that's the Philips VLP-700, better known in the Americas as (I believe) the Magnavox VH-8005.

Of course it's a bit difficult to open the lid when it's on that shelf, but as it doesn't work that's no real problem :-)
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 Post subject: Re: "Wotcha" from the UK :-)
PostPosted: 29 Mar 2019, 22:14 
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gotcha. I use to seeing it with the top in the picture and didn't recognize it from that angle.
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