One of the earliest recordings that we have in the archive of the animated teletext in-vision service shown on Channel 4 in the 1980s and 1990s.

VIDEO: 4-Tel On View. TX DATE: 14th July 1986. COPYRIGHT: Channel 4 Television Corporation. VREF: 26354-01.

Video content

[00:00:00] TELETEXT IN-VISION: about two-and-a-half minutes worth of footage here, including: pages for a competition on the back of Channel 4’s Tour de France coverage; community event noticeboard pages.

The years haven’t been kind to the tape – but still worth presenting as an early example of this service.

We have a bit more footage from this date below and some information about these in-vision teletext broadcasts.

VIDEO: 4-Tel On View. TX DATE: 14th July 1986. COPYRIGHT: Channel 4 Television Corporation. VREF: 26354-02.

Video content

[00:00:00] TELETEXT IN-VISION: the short clip includes the introductory animations, a Channel 4 programme listings page and a preview of the first programme of the day – How to Be Celtic.

4-Tel in-vision pages were initially presented in the more conventional manner, via a standard teletext generator. However, c. 1985, the style of presentation changed with the introduction of these animated sequences.

4-Tel On View was a selection of pages taken from the 4-Tel teletext magazine, which was part of the Channel 4 ORACLE service.

That said, most of the animated sequences/graphics were unique to the in-vision service.

The 4-Tel pages within ORACLE – as well as this in-vision service – were produced by Intelfax.

In-vision teletext pages were shown in rotation with the test card during the morning and early afternoon. The weekday sequence was:

8.30am – 9am Test Card and Tone.

9am – 10am Test Card and Music.

10am – 10.15am 4-Tel On View and Music.

10.15am – 10.30am Oracle On View and Music.

10.30am – 10.45am 4-Tel On View and Music.

10.45am – 11am Test Card and Music.

The 10am – 11am cycle was repeated each hour until the hour in which programmes began. Only the test card was shown during the hour in which the programme schedule started.

In-vision teletext pages were not shown at the weekend. On Saturday and Sunday, test card and music began at 8.30am and continued until the first programme of the day.

The 4-Tel animated sequences were produced in-house at Intelfax using software created by Ian Irving. The package – known as Funtext – ran on Acorn Master 128, or BBC Model B with sideways RAM.

Other technical requirements for Funtext: four free sideways RAM slots plus a writeable RAM chip for a set of utilities.

You can read more about Funtext at Ian’s 4-T Online website.

Can you identify the trade test tape/music on this recording?


Thanks to Jason Robertson for introducing us to Funtext.

PICTURED: 4-Tel On View. COPYRIGHT: Channel 4 Television Corporation..

Posted by The Rewind Team

Leave a Reply