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September 2, 2015

What do I do now that we've gone digital?

by Brad Trechak, posted Jun 14th 2009 9:00AM
Sony WatchmanThe big digital television crossover came and went. So what do I do with my spare set? Sure, I subscribe to cable so my wired televisions should have no problem with the conversion (most of mine are recent purchases anyway and are prepared for the conversion), but that's not what I'm referring to. I'm asking what exactly I could now do with the Sony Watchman Model FD-2A that I purchased in 1985 and remains in my closet to this day.

It was intended as a way of being able to watch television during high school (and to show how dated the set is, the screen is black and white). It does actually still work, if the purpose of the set is to produce a screen of snow.

Here are some ideas that I could now use the set for:
  • As a TV (all I need to do is crack it open and hook up a digital converter, which kind of ruins the portability aspect of the device)
  • Target practice
  • Paperweight
  • Handy object to throw at my oppressors (if I ever have any oppressors)
  • Tree ornament
  • Abstract art
  • Flashlight (if I turn off the sound)
  • Fencing practice (the antenna is pretty long)
  • Prop replica of a Sony Watchman
  • Brick replacement
Any other ideas?

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Scott Schrantz

Open it up and put an iPod inside.

June 16 2009 at 2:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

wasn't there some provision in some sort of DTV legislation allowing analog transmission during emergencies? or was that nixed? or did i make it up?

Also, are there any reasonably-priced portable TVs (

June 15 2009 at 11:05 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Donate it to a museum so it can be display for all to see how we used to watch TV.

June 15 2009 at 7:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Send it to Michael Winslow. He lives in the past and his act does too so it'll be perfect. And even if it should break he could always "make it work". Or not. ;-)

June 15 2009 at 12:49 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Who watches the watchman?

June 15 2009 at 3:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

It´s a lovely paper weight!

June 14 2009 at 8:32 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Well, you could hack a DTV converter box to run on batteries, too, so that you could still use the Watchman without AC power (like when camping for instance).


June 14 2009 at 6:31 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Ha, I have one of these as well.

I might just keep it as a prop relic of old technology.

June 14 2009 at 3:12 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

get a 30 dollar original xbox, hack it and run xbmc.

Now you have portable xbmc

June 14 2009 at 1:54 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Brett Alan

I assume there are still places where it will work. I wonder if there is any charity that would be interested in old TVs to take to places that still use analog broadcasting, either to give away to locals or for charity workers to use while there. Just a thought.

There still are Low Power stations broadcasting in analog here in the US, but I suppose there aren't too many people looking for ways to receive them.

June 14 2009 at 12:26 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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