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Zenith Space Command, the first 20 years

March 28, 2007 | Comment?

You have to love this damn Internet we have here. The answers are out there. Granted, you can’t simply Google anything to answer all the obscure questions, like which exact models of remote controls came out fifty years ago, but what you can do is find the people who probably do know. And then just ask them.

Doug Harland is an avid collector and restorer of old Zenith televisions. He finds them, fixes them, keeps them alive. (Visit his Zenith collection.) He’s one of those people that develop a passion for saving a particular piece of history, an increasingly important thing to do in our throwaway culture. I know there are other avid collectors of televisions, radios, and all sorts of technology out there, but Doug is the one I found. Should/when I write a book about the history of the button, it’s these caretakers of history that are going to save my bacon. They’re saving the knowledge that could easily be lost forever. Thank you.

In early 2006, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the remote control, Doug posted images of his collection of Zenith remote controls. I take no credit for this work, I just put it in a pretty table.

Here you go, all the Zenith Space Commander remote controls, from 1956 to 1976. Enjoy.

Zenith Space Command Space Commander 200
1st generation
1956 B&W

This is the original.

Come on inside to see the entire collection. (Click thumbnails to see them closeup.)

Zenith Space Command Space Commander 200
2nd generation
1957-58 B&W
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 400
2nd generation
1958 B&W
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 400
3rd generation
1959 B&W, 1962-63 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 300
1st generation
1960-61 B&W
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 300
2nd generation
1962-72? B&W
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 400
4th generation
1963-66 B&W
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 400 Color
1st generation
1964-65 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 600
1st generation
1965-72 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 500
1st generation
1971-72 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 500
1st generation
1971-72 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 600
2nd generation
1974-76 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 500
3rd generation
1974-76 color
Zenith Space Command Space Commander 300
3rd generation?
1974-76? color

There. That’s three posts in a row on Robert Adler and the Zenith Space Command remote control. I think I can let that topic go for a while.

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