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Old 25th May 2019, 4:33 pm   #1
Richard_FM
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Default Fidelity CTV140

My latest addition to my collection is this set.

It's nothing to get too excited about, a fairly standard 14" colour set from the mid 1980s, many of which were used as monitors for home computers.

I managed to find an pdf file of the service manual, the site where I found it suggests the chassis was fitted into a number of different badge engineered sets. IIRC by this time Amstrad had bought Fidelity, & were probably merging the ranges, though this set is English made.

Indeed it reminds me of the Goodmans set my parents bought as a 2nd set in 1987, though fortunately it doesn't have a remote control received that suddenly changes channel on a whim.

The set needed the usual wipe over with a duster & polish, & will need some attention to some scratches in due course. There's some paint splashes to be removed, why are these always brilliant white? does everbody repaint their ceilings without putting dust sheets down?

The picture is OK, with some slight fuzziness, though this might be down to the aerial socket being bent.

I remember similar problems with my family's Goodmans, which needed the socket re-soldering after it snapped off.

I've uploaded some pictures as usual.
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Old 25th May 2019, 8:58 pm   #2
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

The Fidelity CTV140 was considered good enough to be marketed in 1988 as an ITT model. I remember selling six of the ITT sets. Never had any trouble with them. I'm sure I still have the service manual somewhere in the shop.

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Old 25th May 2019, 9:02 pm   #3
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Snap! I recently acquired one of these too in a natty metallic purple. It was procured for the princely sum of £1 from the NVCF Bring & Buy stall, as no one else wanted it. I was persuaded on the basis that it was the same colour as the jumper I was wearing on the day

It seems to work as well as any other colour portable of the mid 80s. Minus points for the lack of carrying handle and the terrible tuning arrangement, with the fiddlly little presets around the back right underneath the aerial socket, which must be a great dust trap too.

Seeing one of these stirred a memory that they were also branded as 'Britannia' later in their run. Anyone else remember that or have I imagined it?

There was another Fidelity chassis that had a single button for sequential channel change on both the manual and remote versions of the set. It also appeared in a 20" version. I think that chassis was slightly earlier.

Steve
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Old 25th May 2019, 9:50 pm   #4
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

I remember fixing one of these for my employer in the 1990`s.
Not seen one since.

Robin
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Old 25th May 2019, 9:50 pm   #5
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Thanks for the feedback.

The recesses for the pots on the front are also dust traps, but the knobs can easily be removed to allow for a polish.

The colours listed in the service manual are cream, anthracite & red, a common colour for 1980s portables. Every component has an ordering code, including the ones for different coloured cases.

I'm not keen on those tiny wheels for tuning either, especially after the remote broke on my family's Goodmans & this was the only way to change channels!

I also noted the lack of a carrying handle, but the base has an edge so I can get my fingers under. My Toshiba is also lacking a handle, but has a similar edge.

After playing about with the controls to get the best picture I noticed there is a slight green bias to the screen, even with the colour turned right down.
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Old 25th May 2019, 10:24 pm   #6
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

I've got the 'Britannia' version of this set. It was used in the kitchen for years, and when analogue was switched off, I fed it RF from an old Humax box in another room via its aerial cable - no scart on these sets.
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Old 26th May 2019, 12:16 am   #7
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

well saved. I have a Thomson ICC3 portable which looks almost identical, with the four rotary controls and bank of presets.
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Old 26th May 2019, 12:33 am   #8
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

I had a grey one 25 years ago. Good picture, never any trouble, gave it away when I moved house.

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Old 26th May 2019, 10:59 am   #9
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

We repaired loads of this series of sets back in the day, usually for lopt failure, iirc they were loosely based on the ZX3000 chassis but with different colour decoder chips and different front ends depending on whether they were remote or not.
The aforementioned lopt failure (flashing EHT through the lopt casing) usually resulted in multiple chip failure, usually the colour decoder and/or frame chip.
Anyone recall the long skinny version of the TDA3300 (?) type colour decoder chip on this series ?

Ps. never saw the ITT version. and the only ICC3 sets we really saw were of B&O origin or more usually badged up Nordmende portables.
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Last edited by Red to black; 26th May 2019 at 11:11 am. Reason: missed word + ps added
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Old 26th May 2019, 11:33 am   #10
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

We used to order 20 or 30 of these sets at a time they were so popular , and in busy periods they were gone by the end of the week.

I remember a school buying 10 sets or so at once from us for their classrooms , I don't think that would ever happen nowadays.

Think the price point was something like £149.95 retail.
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Old 26th May 2019, 3:13 pm   #11
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

electronicskip wrote: "Think the price point was something like £149.95 retail."
That was in the late 1980s. Now for the same money you can buy a 32" LCD TV set.

DFWB.
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Old 26th May 2019, 3:26 pm   #12
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Our cash and carry stocked the 'britannia' badged versions for something like £99 + VAT, astoundingly cheap in those days.

I inherited a second hand one from somewhere with a welded mains switch, I just put a new one in and it was the kitchen TV for years. Nice bright picture and never put a foot wrong until mum upgraded to LCD to get some of her worktop area back!

I also remember the sequential channel button type, (was it a different chassis though?). Remember tracking down a very intermittent fault where the pic would white-out with flyback lines for a couple of seconds once every 10 minutes or so, turned out to be a fine line of carbonisation along the body of a diode on the tube base, BA159 or similar.
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Old 26th May 2019, 9:28 pm   #13
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Quote:
Originally Posted by electronicskip View Post
Think the price point was something like £149.95 retail.
At that price new, I'm susprised that people bothered to get them fixed even back then, if the LOPTfmr and transistor, frame chip and other ICs were u/s, surely would make for BER - best part of 40 notes for the transformer repair alone, plus bench time...

We got a remote Alba 14¨set circa 1987 for about 200 notes, first time I had seen a 'monitor style' case. That still worked last time used, still have it in a dark corner of mum´s garage. Doubt much money would have been spent on it had it had loptfmr failure back then though...
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Old 26th May 2019, 10:10 pm   #14
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Yes, me and my brother got an Alba portable in 1994 primarily for video games, although I was a bit disappointed that it didn't feature any form of A/V or SCART input, relying solely on RF - not ideal!

I recall the cheapest one in Argos with SCART was something like +£180, and slap another +£30 on for Teletext, and maybe another +£40 for NICAM, but I digress..

There's currently a rather fetching red example of the Fidelity up on eBay. Looks like it was purchased from Boots in 1986. Even the instruction manual is printed in red ink which I thought that was an interesting touch. Looks to be a remote control model, too.
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Old 26th May 2019, 10:39 pm   #15
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

1994 is very late for there not to be any AV inputs! Must have been a cost cutting measure, saving the cost of the scart socket. I would imagine the rest of the chassis in the set would have been set up for AV use, cannot imagine it would have been worthwhile making two different designs.
On the subject of coloured cabinets, I have a 1998 Tandy catalogue with Beko and Vestel sets in white, dark blue, dark green and bright yellow. Think they were a tenner more than the black cabinet. Will dig it out and scan it if anyone is curious. I myself have a red cased Onwa, light blue Sanyo and dark blue Tecnimagen-Siera (Philips), all from around 2000.

Sorry, seem to have gone off on a tangent!
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Old 26th May 2019, 10:50 pm   #16
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Don't worry you aren't veering off course too much.

I remember some brightly coloured TVs in the late 1990.

Certainly by the mid 1990s almost all sets had some sort of AV input, apart from the very small (under 9 inch) portables.
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Old 27th May 2019, 1:16 am   #17
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Quote:
Originally Posted by ben View Post
I would imagine the rest of the chassis in the set would have been set up for AV use, cannot imagine it would have been worthwhile making two different designs.
I think that might've been the case, as I recall opening up the remote and finding a spare button, which, when pressed using an active part of the keypad membrane brought up 'AV' on-screen! I recall it seemed to stay in tuner mode, albeit with a darker image..

Indeed, it seemed to be a cost-cutting measure for the catalogue brand tellies, and a way for them to mark-up the ones with SCART or A/V to sell at a higher price point. Naturally, the 'big name' portables (i.e Panasonic, Philips, Sony, JVC, Toshiba etc), had all the bells 'n' whistles..and price tags to match!
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Old 27th May 2019, 11:10 am   #18
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

I have an Alba badged remote control version still used as a bedroom set with a Freeview box. As said above there were a few variations of the basic ZX3000 chassis depending if the set was a remote control version/ scart socket fitted etc, but all employed fully isolated chassis. The first generation of Fidelity colour sets, ZX2000 chassis were live chassis 'half mains potential' so could not have any A/V inputs. Besides some general resoldering around the LOPT and switch mode transformers the only other thing was to seal the exit where EHT lead comes out of the LOPT with epoxy resin when it started to spit EHT to the transformer core and cause the set to go into standby intermittently.

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Old 27th May 2019, 12:34 pm   #19
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

Quoted by Richard_ FM post 5. After playing about with the controls to get the best picture I noticed there is a slight green bias to the screen, even with the colour turned right down.

The Fidelity ZX3000 was one of the first generation of sets to employ automatic grey scale tracking. This was done by the RGB chip generating 3 test lines one for each primary colour at the beginning of each frame just before the picture information started. The beam current on each of these lines would be monitored and the 3 RGB output transistors would be electronically adjusted to give correct grey scale, so there was no manual adjustment. How ever if you look on the CRT base panel you may find 2 or 3 preset pots to make a fine ajustment. Make a note of the original positions of these pots and don't go too far off these settings as it may upset the automatic system. If no improvement can be made then the CRT itself has proberbly gone out of tolerance.

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Old 27th May 2019, 12:56 pm   #20
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Default Re: Fidelity CTV140

We used to see lots of these too, and were more welcome than the earlier Fidelity sets - or the ZX5000! Saw plenty of Britannias, but never an ITT with this chassis.
Regarding the green tint, I'd be surprised if the CRT is down. Have a look on the CRT base and there are some small resistors - see if any have changed value. Swapping the red and green feeds over might not be conclusive because of the auto grey scale correction, but it might be worth a go if the presets don't help.
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