UNITRA WAREL SANYO LED 1976

"Unitra" of Poland was once a large union of various semi-conductor and electronics companies that were joined together by the Ministry of Industry back in the 1960's. During Communist rule there was very little  profit orientation so the main purpose for creating the union was combined logistics and R&D... not to mention easier centralized management. In a socialist  economy there was very little independence for the various companies that were usually told what and how to produce to meet political targets set up by the regime. Efficiency and productivity was rarely a factor in those days so it was not uncommon that  outdated junk was produced and retailed. Supply was always low in the East Block so low product functionality or quality was never an issue and everything always sold out instantly.

 

 

"Warel" (based in Warsaw) joined Unitra somewhere in the 1970's. It's core business is radiotransmission for the military but they also produced limited amounts of walkie-talkies for kids. Expertease in the field of electronics must have been the reason why Warel was chosen as the producer of the first Polish digital wristwatch. Unfortunately there was no inhouse technology behind this project as the government simply purchased an outdated LED licence from Sanyo. The first series were assembled from imported Japanese parts but soon after many components were made locally... and quality dropped. At a first glance the modules are identical with that of Pulsar/Sanyo but they were greatly simplified to cut costs. Expensive magnetic reed-switches were exchanged to traditional button contacts thus the modules usually have a metal plate on the right and left side to provide connectivity with the case.

 

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Keywords: unitra warel, unitra led, dugena

Market value: 50-150$ (model, condition, box)

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