Re: 100 Tek Photos

Jason A.


I believe in there being more value in quality engineering, construction and materials than the latest whiz-bang blinking lights on things. I am going to completely wander off-topic, for a moment, but trust me - I'll bring it back. This is just to illustrate a point. (For context, I'm near 50 years old and am leaving it at that. :-P )

Think about your average washing machine from before, say the mid 1990s. Or refrigerators, TVs or many other items we used to take for granted that they would last for years. Now we have appliances - things that used to be called durable goods - that last maybe 7 years and end up in a landfill. I have to ask - which is worse for the environment? Having to wash your clothes twice in a new machine that doesn't get things as clean as a well designed one from the past that would get it done in one wash, but used a little more electricity and water; plus 3-4 of the new fangled ones ending up in the landfill compared to the life of an older one? How long do these LCD TVs last nowadays compared to the old Zeniths, RCAs, Sylvanias, etc.?

Back to the point about Tektronix - as the mind-set of the world went away from designing quality equipment that stands the test of time to the notion of "everything has the shelf life of a banana," unfortunately a company culture built on the principles of design, quality and workmanship is going to struggle in the planned obsolescence / disposable world. It is an ongoing struggle for Tektronix, IBM, General Electric, Altec Lansing, Western Electric, RCA, Maytag and countless other companies in the United States, Germany and other nations known for the products they (once?) produced. Many of these companies are shadows of their former selves because the world has become distracted by "the new thing of the week," and has largely given up on quality.

So to your point Dave, in this day and age of a disposable TV that you purchased for $99 on sale that would cost more to repair than pitching it in the landfill and getting a new one, how much test equipment do the technicians even need? And another question that raises.. how many technicians even are there anymore? How many millennials out there would know how to so much as change a tire, fix an outlet or light-switch in their home, replace a bulging motor-run cap on their air conditioner or the like? But they can sure set up Wifi and ask Alexa to do their shopping.

The worst part of it to me is that we get extra features that don't matter and with it, planned obsolescence.

This is why this group is valuable - It is not just for pure nostalgia that we are enthusiasts for this equipment. Today so much of it is as viable as modern equipment (if maybe not as convenient in some regards and certainly not as energy efficient) for so many tasks today, and in many cases superior to a lot of modern equipment depending on the task. This is a testimony to the minds, vision, effort, and pride the folks who started and made Tektronix Tektronix.

Seeing where and to some extent how they built these products in pictures was a treat!

Best regards,


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