Sinclair Black Watch with Date

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The Black Watch was launched in September 1975 by Sinclair Radionics, later Sinclair Research, the company behind the ZX81 and ZX Spectrum.  It cost £24.95 ready-built or £17.95 as a kit.  It had a red LED display and was marketed by the company as follows:

'if that [the technical description] sounds technical, think of the outcome: a watch with no moving parts, a watch with nothing to go wrong, a watch which gives accuracy never achievable by the most precise mechanical engineering.'

The Black Watch, however, was riddled with problems.  So many were returned that the company made a huge loss and would have been bankrupted were it not for a government subsidy.

The watch had to be disassembled to change the battery, the display was off as a default, two buttons could be pressed, then the time could be read as long as the button was pressed down, this unfortunately drained the battery very quickly indeed.

However, the watch is a good early example of Sinclair's interest in aesthetically pleasing electronic products. 

The watch had to be disassembled to change the battery, the display was off as a default, two buttons could be pressed, then the time could be read as long as the button was pressed down, this unfortunately drained the battery very quickly indeed.

Our Black Watch comes in its original display case.

This Watch came to us by Chris Wilding formerly of Sinclair Radionics and Sinclair Electronics, and has the ability to display the date as well as time, and has a canvas strap.

 

Date : 1975

Manufacturer : Sinclair Radionics

This exhibit has a reference ID of CH66643. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.
 

Scan of Document: Sinclair Black Watch with Date

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