The Philco mystery control

Stokes writes –

This is an ingenious remote control for a home theater system — or at least what would approximate a home theater system in 1939. How it works is even cooler than how it looks. It is dying for a modern retro implementation.

The Philco Mystery Control Page – Link.

Schematics included!

4 thoughts on “The Philco mystery control

  1. I thought it was particularly interesting that, unlike a telephone, the dial rotates in either direction. The use of the finger stop as a button is also a nice user-interface feature; the user’s finger is right there after dialing, so hand movement is minimized.

    1. That’s not quite right. The dial works exactly like a telephone dial. You pull it CCW and it returns to the home position on its own. You cannot turn it yourself either way. You can watch videos of how it works at

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