Seeburg Jukeboxes, Home Stereo, Background Music Systems, and Vending Machines

02/28/09

     
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my Seeburg blog

Welcome to my Seeburg Website!

Hello, my name is Tony Miller. This site commemorates most of Seeburg's jukebox, Home Stereo, Background Music, and Vending Machine products, and focuses on those built between 1949 and 1986. Why those years?1949 saw the introduction of the world's first 100 selection jukebox, the Seeburg M100A, which played either side of 50, 78-RPM records. 1986 saw the introduction of the first CD jukebox, the Seeburg SCD1. Here, I concentrate on the machines that played the records I was familiar with while growing up: 78s, 45s, 33 1/3 albums and (to a lesser extent) those 16 2/3 RPM background music records. There was a time when singles were available on both 78s and 45s. I remember my mom buying one on 78, because she thought there would be more music on it!

I was employed by the original Seeburg Corporation, right after high school in 1964 until the time I went into the service, in 1966. After returning from military service in 1972, I returned to Seeburg, first in their Quality Assurance Department while working on my BSEE, then in the Engineering Department. While working in QA, I repaired several hundred black and gray boxes returned from the field, and came to know them quite well. The first product I designed that actually made it to production was the 5BS1 Light Sequencer used in the STD2 Entertainer, STD3 Sunstar, and STD4 Mardi Gras jukeboxes. I was also responsible for the red box (CSP1) used in the 100-77D Topaz and 100-78D Celestia jukeboxes. I left Seeburg in early 1977, and joined Dave Nutting Associates (part of Bally/Midway, the pinball/slot machine/video game giant) for a couple of years. While there, I designed the hardware for Midway's Rotation 8 pinball machine and the first Computer Add-on for the Bally Professional Arcade. The Add-on never made it to production, although it was shown at the January, 1978 CES show in Las Vegas. Next, I joined Universal Research Laboratories (URL, which was part of Stern Electronics, the not-so-giant pinball/video and eventually, jukebox manufacturer) in 1979 as Chief Engineer. Later that year, Stern acquired Seeburg. I was named the Director of Engineering for URL, staying until 1982, when I left with two other Engineers to form our own consulting company. While at URL, I was responsible for the re-design of the SMC2's MCU board (which became the CPU-3000), and also the electronic control system design of the Video Music Centre (VMC).

During my first period of employment at Seeburg, I spent some time working as an inspector on the hot drink assembly line, so I picked up a little knowledge about how Seeburg hot drink vendors work.
 

Many people selling jukeboxes on ebay copy the text from my music_photos section for their jukebox, and post it as the description for their machine. You have my permission to do so, as long as you post a link to this website for interested bidders to look for more information. Please note that the entire contents of this site is 2007, 2008 Anthony J. Miller, all rights reserved. If you are unfamiliar with the U.S. Government's Copyright policy, I suggest you look here: http://www.uspto.gov/web/offices/dcom/olia/copyright/copyrightrefresher.htm 

If you do not include a link to my website, I will ask you to either do so, or to delete the text you copied from here. If you do not do either one, I will post your trader name below as a dishonest ebay trader, and report you to ebay's Vero department.

Dishonest ebay traders:

None at this time.

Seeburg's stationary proclaimed that they were the 'World Leaders in Music and Vending', as I'm sure you'll agree as you investigate this website. Most people are probably interested in the jukebox, home stereo, and background music system offerings from Seeburg, so I'll list them first, follwoed by many members of the extensive line of vending machines Seeburg also built.

Jukebox, Home Stereo, Background Music System Photos

Most visitors to this site are interested in the jukebox photos. There are a lot of them here, so I have organized them into several different pages. Note that where one page ends and the next begins is somewhat arbitrary, except for the Silver Age machines. I've defined how I think they should be organized below:

    Silver Age jukeboxes: Those built by Seeburg between 1949 and 1961, where the mechanism can be seen.

    Console Age jukeboxes: Seeburg started the Console age in 1962. This lasted until 1968. In these and all that follow (with one exception), the mechanism cannot be seen.

    Digital jukeboxes: Seeburg introduced their first Microlog (as they called it. A more popular name is Black & Gray Box) machine in 1969. The last of these was built in 1977. This page also includes the two Red Box machines, the 100-77D Topaz and 100-78D Celestia.

    Microprocessor jukeboxes: Seeburg introduced the first Microprocessor-controlled jukebox in 1978. The last record-playing (as opposed to CD) Seeburg machine came out in 1984, and was built until 1986. This page also includes the elusive 100-79M DaVinci, or SMC1, Jr.

    Home Stereo Units: Seeburg built a variety of home entertainment systems. They are featured here.

    Background Music Systems: Systems built for industrial and commercial background music are featured here.

    Remote Selection Systems: Wallboxes and Consolettes are featured on this page.

    Speakers: Seeburg offered a wide range of external speakers for use with their jukeboxes. They are featured here.

    Accessories: Seeburg also offered a variety of accessories for use with their jukeboxes. They are featured here.

All of these can be found under the 'Music_photos' tabs at the left and bottom.

Vending Machine Photos

Seeburg also built a wide variety of vending machines. During the 60s, Seeburg acquired several other vending machine companies and their products. These are organized below:

    Hot_drink vendors: A variety of coffee, tea, hot chocolate, and hot soup vendors are listed here.

    Cold_drink vendors: Seeburg manufactured a line of cold drink vendors that featured crushed ice. They also built can and milk vendors. These are featured here.

    Smoking_materials vendors: Cigarette, cigar, and cigarillo machines are featured here.

    Miscellaneous_vendors: Such as candy, gum, pastry, laundry detergent and pic-a-pack vendors are featured here.

All of these can be found under the 'Vendor_photos' tabs at the left and bottom.

Factory Tour

Interested in seeing what the factory looked like? Click on the factory tour tabs. I worked there several times over many years, and in several different positions. Interested in what it was like working there? See 'My Seeburg blog'.

Many visitors are looking for information about how their machine works, or how to fix it when it breaks.  As a hobby, I have written or helped to prepare for publishing seven manuals. All are helpful in understanding how these machines work, and how to repair them when they don't. They are listed on the Books tabs at the left and bottom. These books are available from me directly or from several other Internet sources. Each book covers several of the pictured machines. Which book covers which machine is listed at the bottom of the paragraph describing each machine. Click on the book name for more information.

Problems with your Jukebox?

Other visitors are looking for help with a problem with their machine. After following the various Internet jukebox discussion groups for a few years, and answering many emails, I noticed that most of the problems people had with their Seeburg jukebox came down to four general symptoms:

    1) Same selection played over and over again,
    2) Selection rejects as soon as picked up,
    3) Mechanism scans twice, then stops without playing anything,
    4) Cannot reject a record, either at the end of the record, from the rear switch, or the PRVC .

 
I've gathered these symptoms and troubleshooting tips for each into the Troubleshooting tabs at left and bottom.

Moving your machine?

If you plan to move your machine across town or across the country, read this first!

The Famous Tormat Memory, and other Techy Stuff

All Seeburg jukes and home stereos built between 1955 and 1978 used the Tormat memory unit. Interested in how it works? Want to know how to connect a D.E.C. Consolette to your Microlog machine? Seeburg built several Quadraphonic jukeboxes. Would you like to find out the story behind them? Want to remotely control your jukebox volume? Want to know how the STD 'chaser' lamps on the STD2 Entertainer, STD3 Sunstar and STD4 Mardi Gras work and how to replace them? Several websites have shown pictures of what they claim is the SMC1 Jr. jukebox, a 100-selection machine built using the Microprocessor system. In actuality, what they show is the 1964 U100-D Mustang Discotheque Jr., thus creating a jukebox 'urban legend'. No one (including me) was absolutely sure if the machine really existed until I answered an email from the owner of one. Read a reprint of an article I wrote, and published in the September, 2003 edition of Always Jukin' magazine by clicking on the SMC1 Jr. tabs. These semi-technical articles can be found by clicking on the Techy stuff tabs.

Need Help?

All of us need help from time to time. Need help with your machine? Check the Need Help? tabs for email links to well-qualified service guys. Sometimes I need help, too. If you can help me with a few items and information I'm looking for, I certainly would appreciate it! Please go to the Wanted tabs for a list of information and things I'm looking for.


What's New?

It's a good idea to check back from time to time, since I add information fairly often. Check the What's New tabs to see what's been added since your last visit. Also, check out the links tabs, where links to many jukebox sites are listed.

Guestbook

I'm interested in your opinion of this website, so please sign my Guestbook. If you'd like to read comments made by others, read my Guestbook.

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Number of visits since 9/01/2007.
 

   

 

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This site was last updated 02/28/09