[rescue] Slightly OT: Bad Cap Saga

Carl R. Friend crfriend at rcn.com
Mon Aug 18 14:33:33 CDT 2008

    On Mon, 18 Aug 2008, Curious George wrote:

> OTOH, I can buy a "quality" $300 TV that will last me many
> years.  Or, a crappy $5000 plasma unit that won't last *two*!
> Which should I, as a consumer, consider "cheap consumer electronics"?

    Well, in my case, you're dealing with a bloke who, in 1983
dropped three grand on a 40" 3-CRT rear-projection television
set, and I was massively ticked off when it died earlier this
year and was pronounced "unrepairable" (likely because there's
no talent left that can troubleshoot to the component level).
I am unamused enough that my wife and I are getting by on an
even *older* 12-incher.  If I were to drop five grand on a
television and have it conk out in two years' time I would be
positively *furious*.

    I can see failures that have a distict *cause* (e.g. the
cat threw up on it and it dripped through the vents), but I
do not appreciate failures on a micro-timeline (and I, for
one, do not adhere to the current view of "three years and
it's obsolete -- go buy another one) whether it's in the
consumer sector or the business/industrial sector that are
due solely to "planned obsolescence"; the "build it as cheaply
as possible and the consumer (whomever that may be) be damned
borders on, if not outright intrudes into, theft.

    I routinely run computers that are older than many of my
friends, and they run just as faithfully today as they did
when originally manufactured in the 1960s and 1970s.  How
is this possible, the modern mind will, of necessity, ask
(for the modern mind is not accustomed to having anything
last more than three to five years)?  It's possible due to
two little things known as "good engineering" and "quality
control".  From the conversation in this particular thread,
I'm getting the picture that "quality control" is a thing
of the past -- yet another hollow echo of something that old
farts like to call the "Good Old Days" -- but I'd really hate
to see good design and engineering go down the same rathole.
If your "design ethic" calls for something to be dead in three
years' time, that's fine -- just make sure that the product
is LABELLED that way.

    Speaking of things that are way past their expiry date, does
anybody here happen to know what internal voltages are used in
Pioneer CLD-3090 Laserdisk players?  I've got one that the logic
and display turns on, but there's precisely no actuator motion.
That sounds like power to me, and I'd like to get the thing
working again even if it does mean an external supply.  I'd also
like to rescue the Tangerine Dream CD that's stuck in it...  On
the television -- does an analogue the old "Sam's Photofact" series
still exist?  If I can find a schematic for the thing I'll likely
be able to fix it.


| Carl Richard Friend (UNIX Sysadmin)            | West Boylston       |
| Minicomputer Collector / Enthusiast            | Massachusetts, USA  |
| mailto:crfriend at rcn.com                        +---------------------+
| http://users.rcn.com/crfriend/museum           | ICBM: 42:22N 71:47W |

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