PICTURE QUALITY – COLOR
When black & white televisions began to hit the marketplace, the movie theatre industry didn’t see
it as a threat being that only a handful could afford the product. In the ‘50s whereas mass production
started pumping out volume it was a different story and theatres sought at keeping a step ahead by
innovating. One such stroke of genius was the introduction of color movies.
Of course, it didn’t take long for the television camp to follow suit. Four major networks each presented
the FCC their version of a color television prototype all different one from the other. Needless to say the
FCC was not impressed and quickly sent them packing instructing them to work together on one single
Ironically, the idea of adding colors to black & white TV broadcasts couldn’t be farther from the actual
requirements. One engineer dared question and suggest the not so obvious. Why not extract colors from
the original black & white and recompose?
Understanding that pure light is composed of all existing colors at their full saturation and the moment light
is refracted, by rain droplets for example, a rainbow of color fills the sky. Ever noticed how the colors in a
rainbow are always in the same order?
Did you know that the human retina at the back of our eyes is photosensitive to ONLY three (3) colors:
red, green & blue? Limitless shades of each three colors multiplied between themselves account for
every possible potential natural existing color in the universe.
And that’s exactly how color was introduced to the television broadcasting system, by extracting the
blue then the red from the original black & white then recomposing all three versions by superimposing
them into one single colorful image.