Photos of Jukeboxes, Remote Selectors, Home Stereos, Background Music Systems, Speakers, and Accessories
Seeburg built its first coin-operated jukebox in 1927. This machine simply played the next record in order: it gave you no choice of your selection. In 1928, Seeburg introduced its first customer-selectable jukebox, the 'Audiophone'. This used a ferris wheel-like mechanism that played one side of eight records. In 1935 the Freborg mechanism with 12 selections on sliding trays was introduced. This was the standard Seeburg mechanism until the famous 'Select-O-Matic' M100A was introduced in 1948, playing 100 selections (both sides of 50 records). With this machine, the 'Silver Age' of jukeboxes began, and the jukebox photos of this website also begin. This development took the competition by surprise, since their best offerings played at most 24 selections. The other major manufacturers - Wurlitzer, Rock-Ola, and Rowe took several years to catch up.
In 1950, Seeburg again shocked the coin-op music industry with the introduction of the first 45 RPM jukebox, the M100B. This was followed by a series of innovations. In 1953, the first high-fidelity jukebox was built, the HF100G, which featured a wide range, multi-speaker audio system with low distortion. 1955 saw the introduction of the first 200-selection machine(V200), which also introduced dual pricing for the new two tune EP records. This machine also introduced the first selection memory system with no moving parts, the famous Tormat Memory Unit. In 1958, the first 160-selection machine was built, the model 161. 1958 saw the introduction of the first stereo jukebox, the 220/222. In 1959, Seeburg introduced the 1000 Background Music System, with specially-manufactured 9-inch, 16⅔ RPM records. The player held 25 records, each held 40 selections (20 per side), for a total of 1000 selections or 37½ hours without a repeat.
In 1960, Seeburg introduced a machine (the Q100/Q160) that could play both 33⅓ RPM and 45 RPM records, in any order. This machine used an optional Auto-Speed Unit to change the frequency of the power to the mechanism motor, thus slowing it down in order to play the 33⅓ RPM records. At the same time, the 'Artist of the Week' promotion permitted operators to program the same music on a jukebox as customers were playing at home. A new artist was prominently featured each week with an album cover facsimile on the machine cabinet. 1962 saw the introduction of 'Directional Stereo' which was an adjustable pair of 'ear' speakers at the top of the DS100 and DS160 machines. This enhanced the stereo effect by beaming the left and right audio channels in widely dispersed directions. 1962 also saw the introduction of a new cabinet concept, the LP Console (LPC1). This machine started the 'Console Age', in which the record playing mechanism could no longer be seen. With the LPC1, a new Consolette (SC1) was also introduced which featured stereo speakers in addition to the remote selector. The LPC1 also included an Income Totalizer as standard equipment to keep track of all money in the Console and remote Consolettes. In 1964, the LPC480 jukebox introduced a 'Discotheque' package that included two external speakers of a size and sound quality normally used only in recording studios. 1969 saw the introduction of the first digital jukebox, the LS3. All important selection circuitry was designed into three custom integrated circuits (called MicroLogs by Seeburg) which were housed in sealed plastic boxes. The boxes were designed to be easily exchanged and returned to the factory in the event a repair was needed.
Seeburg introduced the first Microprocessor-controlled jukebox, the SMC1, in 1978. After Seeburg's bankruptcy in 1979, Stern/Seeburg introduced the VMC1 in 1981, which eliminated all titlestrips, replacing them with a video screen. Seeburg's last vinyl-playing jukebox was the SMC3, introduced in 1984. It is the last jukebox featured on this website.
Below are links to the photos pages. Click on the highlighted text or the tabs below to get to the page you want.
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 SMC1 Disco), 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 100-selection 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: Many of the accessory speakers Seeburg offered are featured here.
Accessories: Accessories for the coin-operated music line are featured here.