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April 29, 2010

Sara’s Dream TV – The Kuba Komet!

By Sara In AZ

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Wow! What can I say about this TV, but Wow! Is this not the most retro, kitschy, crazy TV you have ever seen? This is the Kuba Komet from Germany, and I am totally in love. The KUBA Corporation manufactured the Komet from 1957 to 1962 in Wolfenbuttel, West Germany. These were kind of an early version of the entertainment center, as there were 8 speakers embedded in this along with a record player, a radio, and a TV tuner in the  bottom cabinet. For an extra charge you could also get a early version of a type of tape recorder and a Remote control with UHF tuner!

Another cool feature of these sets was the ability to swivel the top as you can see in the above picture. Komets were not small by any means. The set stands approx. 5′ 7″ tall, it’s over 7′ wide and weighs about 300 pounds. It cost approximately $700 – $1,250.00 US back then, which at that time – well that was a BOAT LOAD of money. Heck, that is a boat load of money to me now in 2010!!!

Here is a photo from the Radio and Television Exhibition in Frankfurt, West Germany, Aug. 5, 1957.

 

Here is a back view.


So, does anybody want to buy me one as a Christmas gift or something? :) I think, if you can find one now, it would only cost around $10,000!!!

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21 Responses to Sara’s Dream TV – The Kuba Komet!

  1. Kelly Reply

    April 29, 2010 at 9:00 am

    Wowee! I’ve never seen that model before! I love the design and that sense of danger in that any minute, I could come around the corner and poke my eye out if I get too close!

    This is the kind of thing that one dreams of finding in a dark estate sale basement and having the Seller say, “Oh, ten bucks..”

    I’d love to know how many of these were purchased new back in the day – you know, what our odds are…

  2. Annie B. Reply

    April 29, 2010 at 9:08 am

    SARA!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Is this thing for real?? That sucker is huge! WOW. Totally sci-fi insane and I love it. Never knew such a thing existed. Thanks for the enlightenment. It makes me realize that it really was a MOD MOD MOD MOD world in the 1950’s…….just think how much terrific retro stuff exists outside the US. You know, the Komet is probably worth ten grand, if you could even find one.

  3. RetroRuth Reply

    April 29, 2010 at 10:25 am

    I think that sound you just heard was Tom’s heart breaking because we will never own this TV. Poor baby…

  4. Sara in AZ Reply

    April 29, 2010 at 1:50 pm

    Kelly – I know – with the sharp corner point you would feel the need to be very careful around the TV. Oops! ;) I too would love to know how many actually sold, being so very expensive and all. I can only imagine the decor of the homes they were in……….retro-tastic!

    Annie B. – Oh yeah, it is a real TV, isn’t it the best! I agree, it probably is worth $10,000 – if you could find one! I know they used really good wood like maple and some other special wood that only came from Africa on some of them.

    Ruth – Hey, you never know what you will find in the basements of Michigan! :)

  5. sablemable Reply

    April 30, 2010 at 9:47 am

    OMG, Saraaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!!!!!!!! That tv puts the icing on the cake!

    Yes, I’ll run right out and buy it for you, LOL!

    Great post!

  6. bigron Reply

    January 24, 2011 at 10:46 pm

    they have one at the early tv museum in hilliard,ohio.this thing is a monsterosity!so big and ugly………i got to have one!i love this thing.if the tv was color,that would be the ultimate entertainment center.if i get an extra,it yours.we have the same funky taste.

    • RetroRuth Reply

      January 25, 2011 at 10:07 am

      Awesome, bigron! I am totally adding that museum to my roadtrip wishlist!

  7. Sara in AZ Reply

    January 25, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    Oooohhhh, let me know if you ever come across one bigron, it is my dream TV! :)

    I will have to check that museum out sometime too.

  8. Pascal Reply

    September 15, 2011 at 4:19 am

    That TV set cost 3227 Deutschmarks in 1959 with tape recorder included (as additional item). The salary 1959 of a typical steel worker in Germany was 500 Deutschmarks a month…

    1 US-$ was traded for (in medium) 4.17 Deutschmarks, so the price in US-$ from 1959 would be $774.

    The average cost of a new car in the United States was $2,200 in that time. So that Kuba Komet would have cost the price of 1/3 car.

  9. Fred Reply

    September 27, 2012 at 4:21 pm

    The production number of this set was around 50 max!
    I have been to the kuba-museum in wolffenbuttel in Germany (I live in Holland / The Netherlands)
    and seen the one that is featured in photo with the green background, because that picture has been taken in the museum.
    When I was there, they told me that there were plans to make a new production replica’s but with modern technique inside, based up-on the original buildingsheets of this model, because they still have those!
    Again the number would be about 50 pieces, just as the original version production number.
    I left my emailadres back then with the instructions to inform me when these lag would be executed because I am interested to buy one … This has been about 4 years ago, and still no message….

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      September 27, 2012 at 6:37 pm

      Hi Fred, Thanks for the info! Keep us updated, as I would love to know if they ever do reproductions of this TV! You can be first in line to buy one………..and I will be 2nd! :)

      And wow! I never knew there were only ever 50 made! That has got to make this one rare TV!

  10. Sandy Geiger Reply

    October 24, 2012 at 4:59 pm

    I don’t think one would work here in America anyway, because of the different TV system & voltages. These things were reputed to have typical top-notch German craftsmanship, I still think they might have been advance scouts for an Alien invasion…Knowin’ my luck, I’d come home loaded some night, & get into a fight w/the damthing, fall, & impale myself on it…(grin)

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      October 31, 2012 at 7:22 pm

      Sandy, You are probably right….it would not work here because of the different voltages and everything – you’d definitely have to get it converted…which I’d gladly do in a heartbeat! :)

      On the other hand, it certainly could conceal advance scouts for aliens, maybe I had better rethink wanting this TV! ;)

  11. Anne Gnonémousse Reply

    October 31, 2012 at 1:49 pm

    See one at The Museum of Things in Berlin.
    http://www.museumderdinge.de/

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      October 31, 2012 at 7:23 pm

      Thanks for the heads up Anne!

  12. Sandy Geiger Reply

    October 31, 2012 at 3:27 pm

    It would have REALLY been neat if they’d have put an early-day “Roundie” tube-type color TV in it. Color TV broadcasting in Germany didn’t start til the mid-Sixties, IIRC. There were also 2 different types of color TV systems in use in Europe PAL & SECAM, neither of which were compatible w/NTSC, which was what we used here in the US. Fifties & early Sixties “Roundie” sets are HIGHLY prized by collectors-And one restored & properly “tweaked” will give any HDTV a pretty good run for its money.

    • Sara In AZ Reply

      October 31, 2012 at 7:26 pm

      You know Sandy, it would have looked really cool with a round TV…..good call!

      You sure do seem to know a lot about TV’s, anytime I have a question now I know just where to go! :)

  13. Sandy Geiger Reply

    October 31, 2012 at 7:46 pm

    If you wanna see a REAL “roundie”, go to Youtube, & type in “Liberace Nola”. The TV is a 1949/50 Zenith 12″ Porthole. The model was the “Claridge”, & mine is restored & works dandy. They fairly SCREAM “1950”…The Komet is DEFINITELY more “Space Age” looking. THere was a Komet on Ebay about a year or so ago, seems like the guy wanted $7K for it. A Porthole Zenith, restored, will set you back about $400-600.

  14. Pingback: Cool Vintage & Retro Sights From Our Recent Road Trip | No Pattern Required

  15. Jules Djcarpenoctem Reply

    March 16, 2014 at 11:42 am

    Hi, there are only 11 left in the World. I have just Seen One in a Museum in hamburg, and they are very proud of it. They told us about crazy japanese collecters, tried to buy it.
    Greetz!

    • Sandy Geiger Reply

      April 2, 2014 at 2:04 pm

      Too bad they didn’t get in cahoots w/RCA & stick a CTC-7 roundie color set in them… THAT woulda been Something..

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