Swintec’s Samsung Swansong

Circa April 1989, the Swintec SW 65 is an e.t. manufactured for the American market:

In Australia, a brick-sized American step-down transformer is needed to go from 240 volts down to 110:

With its corporate headquarters in Moonachie, New Jersey, the Swintec Corporation was established in 1978 as an office equipment supplier selling electronic calculators and copiers. After establishing a lucrative OEM relationship with the Japanese manufacturer Nakajima All, by 1986, Swintec became the fourth largest supplier of electronic typewriters in the USA.

By the early 1990s, a second, less lucrative and short-lived OEM relationship was established with the Korean electronics giant, Samsung. Known models:

  • Swintec SW 65 (1989)
  • Swintec SW 85, 95 (1992?)

The SW 65 was sold under Samsung’s own brand as the SQ-1200, the lower spec model of a three model Samsung SQ (1200, 2200, 3200) series:

The SQ-1200 and 2200 share the same instruction guide, so what the difference is I don’t know.

The SQ-1200/2200 was also sold in the USA as the Packard Bell PB10TX, and in Europe as the Welco EX 200 and the Quasar 15-1500.

A Samsung SQ-3200 is pictured below:

Stylistically, these typewriters bear some resemblance to first series PA-3100 portable electronic typewriters manufactured by Sharp in Korea. The ribbon cassettes are similar too:

Samsung SQ series compatible ribbon:

But instead of a cassette printwheel like those used in Sharp’s PA 3100 series, the printwheel in e.t.s of the Samsung SQ (1200, 2200, 3200) is a non-cassette printwheel – it’s interesting to note, however, an in-situ sleeve which sits over the inserted non-cassette wheel and what *could* be a design modification to compensate for a non-cassette wheel:

If Samsung wasn’t simply “inspired” by the design of Sharp’s Korean-made PA-3100 series, it possibly obtained the patent rights via a licensing arrangement with Sharp or through an acquisition.

All subsequent Samsung portables take a Brother AX series compatible ribbon cassette. Manufactured in Korea, the Swintec SW 85 (pictured below) is based on the Samsung SQ-1250:

The Facit T90 Privat appears to be the same typewriter:

A Swintec 95 is so far unsighted, but is most likely based on the Samsung SQ-3000 …

… or whatever Samsung model this Olympia Monica MD2 equates to – an intermediate display model with a smaller LCD screen (the same single left-hand platen knob and the same scooped or inset keyboard) …

… but not necessarily: A model with dual platen knobs is depicted in Australian advertising of September 1993 …

… and is possibly the same typewriter as this Brunsviga MD1

The plot thickens… Dual platen knobs and differently coloured function keys (both features of Samsung’s first portable series) suggest this is an earlier rather than later design variation. Both variations have a scooped or inset keyboard.

The Samsung SQ-1000 (also sold as the Commodore SQ-1000, below) is different and is the first in a later and more cheaply constructed (SQ-1000, 1500, 3000) series:

The series includes (confusingly) a second incarnation of the SQ-3000:

The Samsung SQ 1000 was also sold as the Commodore SQ-1000, Elite S-7000, Hanseatic Europa, Olympia Textstar, Privileg Electronic 1100, Royal RT 7300, Sigma SM 8000, Silver Reed EX-133 and Smith Corona Wordsmith 100.

The Samsung SQ-1500 was sold as the Royal RT 7500 and the Smith Corona Wordsmith 150.

The later Samsung SQ-3000 model was also sold as the Elite S-7500, Hanseatic Europa II, Leader MD, Olympia Textstar MD, Opperman S-7100, Privilege Electronic 2600, Royal RT 7700, Silver Reed EX-133 MD, Smith Corona Wordsmith 200 and Welco EX 260 DS.

It’s just as well Swintec dropped its “We Made It” advertising slogan (circa 1989):

1 Brunsviga was at this time a trademark of AEG Olympia.


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