North American Auction Company
Timed Auction

Last Chance June 2023 Passed Lots Offering

Mon, Jun 5, 2023 02:00AM EDT - Fri, Jun 9, 2023 03:00PM EDT
Lot 262

Rare 1956 Zenith Royal "R" Chassis Television

Estimate: $800 - $1,600

Bid Increments

Price Bid Increment
$25 $5
$50 $10
$100 $25
$500 $50
$1,000 $100
$2,000 $250
$5,000 $500
$10,000 $1,000
$25,000 $2,500
Featured in this lot is this rare 1956 Zenith Royal "R" Chassis television produced by the Zenith Radio Corporation. Eugene F. McDonald Jr., a prosperous distributor of radio parts, established Zenith Radio Corporation in 1918 in Chicago, Illinois. The name "Zenith" was chosen for the business to signify its dedication to innovation and excellence. Zenith was one of the top radio manufacturers in the US when it first started out by focusing on making radio receivers. Zenith switched its focus from commercial to military electronics during World War II, producing radios, radar systems, and other apparatus. After the war, Zenith went back to making consumer electronics and kept coming up with new technological innovations. The company invented the first wireless remote control for televisions in the 1950s, which was a significant advancement at the time. The first TV with a flat picture tube was released by Zenith in 1969, revolutionizing the market and laying the groundwork for contemporary flat-screen televisions. In contrast, other electronics producers increased their competition with Zenith in the 1980s and 1990s, which led to the company's financial difficulties. Zenith adopted digital high-definition television technology as the first American TV manufacturer in 1995, but the business's financial issues persisted. The South Korean electronics manufacturer LG Electronics purchased Zenith in 1999. Zenith created the well-known television model known as the Royal "R" Chassis in 1956. The "New Vista" picture tube, one of the first to be used in a television, offered a wider and clearer image than earlier models. The Zenith Royal "R" Chassis' use of a transistorized power supply was one of its main innovations. Compared to earlier television models, which relied on bulky vacuum tube power supplies, this was a significant improvement. The television was significantly lighter and more dependable thanks to the transistorized power supply, which also consumed less energy. The "Beam Finder" tuning system on the Zenith Royal "R" Chassis made it simpler for viewers to locate and lock onto channels. A small oscilloscope tube was used in the system to display a pattern of lines that could be adjusted to match the TV station's signal. This TV was a pioneer in television technology. The TV shows a contemporary design, with a sleek wooden cabinet, finished in a mahogany color and a gold colored speaker grill. On the top of the gold grill, it shows the Zenith emblem. A thin gold-colored frame encircled the television screen above the speaker grille, giving it a fashionable and luxurious appearance. Above the screen of the television, there are two knobs, one on the left and one on the right. The right one shows numbers while the left side shows no markings. These knobs were used to change channels and the volume. The TV shows good condition overall with some wear from its vintage age and use over the years. The back housing for one electrical component is bent and close to falling off, but no other major signs of damage are noted. The TV has not been tested for functionality. The TV measures 26 1/4" L x 25 1/8" W x 38" H.