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Re-Used Props - Mobile Computers
by
Jörg Hillebrand and Bernd Schneider

Desktop Computers - Handheld Computers

 

Many props in Star Trek were later modified or even recycled without changes to represent equipment for a different purpose or of another civilization. Here are quite a few examples of desktop and handheld computing devices. Please note that every statement made here should be taken with a grain of salt. There is no need to seek for explanations. Certainly we are not supposed to watch closely enough to notice that computers look all the same everywhere in the galaxy.

 

Desktop Computers

TOS desktop computer Kor is using a Starfleet computer in TOS: "Errand of Mercy". Another computer of the same type can be seen on Eminiar VII in "A Taste of Armageddon".


Computer in TOS: "The Conscience of the King"

(screen capture by Will)


Computer in TOS: "Errand of Mercy"

(screen capture by Will)

Computer in TOS: "A Taste of Armageddon"

(screen capture by Will)

Cardassian desktop computer The Cardassian computer that Gul Madred is using in TNG: "Chain of Command" later appears on Baran's ship in TNG: "Gambit". The prop was repainted for its second appearance (curiously, in the new brown color it looks even more Cardassian). But considering that Baran is a pirate it would be easy to explain how he got his hands on a Cardassian computer.


Madred's computer in TNG: "Chain of Command"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Baran's computer in TNG: "Gambit, Part II"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Trill & Sloan's monitor In DS9: "Rejoined" Trill scientists take one of their monitors (among other equipment) aboard the Defiant for their wormhole experiment. The same monitor can be seen in "Sloan's mind" in DS9: "Extreme Measures". The other monitor in the latter scene is a variant of the TNG monitor.


Trill monitor in DS9: "Rejoined"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Sloan's "monitor" in DS9: "Extreme Measures"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Starfleet & Dinaali desktop computer A typical Starfleet desktop console, as seen in DS9: "Whispers", was slightly redressed to stand in as a Dinaali device in VOY: "Critical Care".


Starfleet console in DS9: "Whispers"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Dinaali console in VOY: "Critical Care"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Desktop scanner The identity scanner used by Data in "The Measure of a Man" can be seen again in TNG: "Unification I", where a Romulan is holding the prop.


Scanner in TNG: "The Measure of a Man"

(screen capture by Jörg)

White box in TNG: "Unification I"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Desktop box This octagonal box was originally built for TNG: "Booby Trap", where it served as a data storage device. It then appeared as the communication scrambler used by Jonas in VOY: "Threshold". Finally, we could see the box as a communication device of the Borg Cooperative in VOY: "Unity". The device was repainted and slightly modified each time. More about the prop at Jonathansweb.


Storage device in TNG: "Booby Trap"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Communication scrambler in VOY: "Threshold"

(screen capture by Jörg)


Cooperative communication device in VOY: "Unity"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Klingon monitor The first time that this type of Klingon desktop monitor appears on TNG is in "Redemption II". It is seen again, as a Klingon monitor, in "Unification II" and after that appears as a Starfleet monitor in "Descent I" and "Sub Rosa". In the VOY episodes "Time and Again" and "Ex Post Facto" it appears on the polaric energy planet and on Banea respectively.


Klingon monitor in TNG: "Redemption II"

(screen capture by Jörg)


Starfleet monitor in TNG: "Descent I"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Banean monitor in VOY: "Ex Post Facto"

(screen capture by Jörg)

 

Handheld Computers

21st century & Romulan PADD The 21st century PADD seen in "Encounter at Farpoint" reappears on Romulus in TNG: "Unification I".


PADD in TNG: "Encounter at Farpoint"

(screen capture by Jörg)

PADD in TNG: "Unification I"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Starfleet & Orion PADD In TNG: "Code of Honor", Tasha Yar uses a PADD to start a holodeck program instead of a voice command. In "11001001" two of these PADDs can be seen to the left and right of the holodeck control LCARS display. One is later seen up close as a medical PADD in "We’ll Always Have Paris". Slightly modified, they also appear as Orion PADDs in the Enterprise episode "Borderland" more than 15 years later.


Holodeck PADD in TNG: "Code of Honor"

(screen capture by Jörg)
 

Holodeck PADDs in TNG: "11001001"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Medical PADD in TNG: "We'll Always Have Paris"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Orion PADD in ENT: "Borderland"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Kressari PADD & more In DS9: "The Circle" the Kressari captain demands a thumb print from his Cardassian trade partner. His PADD can be seen along with Kressari lettering. The same equipment without any visible changes is used in DS9: "The Die is Cast". Here the Romulan Lovok, actually a Changeling in disguise, hands out a PADD to Garak and Odo that obviously carries the access code to the shuttlebay.


Kressari freight PADD in DS9: "The Circle"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Romulan door opener in DS9: "The Die is Cast"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Also, the prop shows up in VOY: "Critical Care", here as a PADD again.


Dinaali PADD in VOY: "Critical Care"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Romulan & Mari PADD The Romulan PADD from Neral's office in both parts of TNG: "Unification" can be seen on the Mari homeworld in VOY: "Random Thoughts" as well. The display was most likely modified for its new role though.


Romulan PADD in TNG: "Unification, Part I"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Mari PADD in VOY: "Random Thoughts"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Tyran & Numiri PADD The Tyran PADD from TNG: "The Quality of Life" later appears in the Voyager episode "Ex Post Facto", where it is used by the Numiri.


Tyran PADD in TNG: "The Quality of Life"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Numiri PADD in VOY: "Ex Post Facto"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Trill & Dinaali PADD We can see the same prop as a Trill PADD in DS9: "Equilibrium" and, now painted differently, as a Dinaali device in VOY: "Critical Care". It looks like a Children's game console to us.


Trill PADD in DS9: "Equilibrium"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Dinaali PADD in VOY: "Critical Care"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Vori & Nezu PADD The PADDs of these two civilizations look identical.


Vori PADD in VOY: "Nemesis"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Nezu PADD in VOY: "Rise"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Aldean communicator & more A number of characteristic hexagonal communicators was built for the Aldeans in TNG: "When the Bough Breaks". The devices were used to communicate and to signal when they wished to be beamed back. The button to send the signal was located in one of the corners. Many years later we could see a modification of this prop on Star Trek Voyager, used by the authorities of an alien planet to measure the polaric radiation in VOY: "Time and Again". The color and the central area of the device had been modified, but the button was still there.


Aldean communicator in TNG: "When the Bough..."

(screen capture by Jörg)

Polaron meter in VOY: "Time and Again"

(screen capture by Jörg)

The prop could be seen one last time in VOY: "Prototype". Here the Automated Unit disables B'Elanna with an energy blast from the device, and then signals the Pralor vessel to beam them over. The color was modified again (it is now glowing red from the inside), and the button was removed. The hole where the button was mounted is still visible if we look closely.


Pralor device in VOY: "Prototype"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Fingerprint scanner & PADD Another interesting prop can be seen for the first time in TNG: "The Most Toys". In this episode it serves as a fingerprint scanner. When Data is confirming the deal with Fajo with his fingerprint, he is disabled by an energy surge from the device. A further appearance is in TNG: "The Masterpiece Society" where it becomes a scanner. The denizens of the Moab colony use it to scan for fractures in the shell of their artificially built environment. For this purpose an illuminated window was added in the place of the former fingerprint sensor.


Fingerprint scanner in TNG: "The Most Toys"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Scanner in TNG: "The Masterpiece Society"

(screen capture by Jörg)

In two later episodes the unmodified prop serves as a display device, namely in TNG: "Frame of Mind" as a Tilonian PADD and in TNG: "Gambit" as Galen/Picard's PADD. Finally, the prop can be seen as an Enaran PADD in VOY: "Remember".


Tilonian PADD in TNG: "Frame of Mind"

(screen capture by Jörg)
 

Galen's PADD in TNG: "Gambit, Part II"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Enaran PADD in VOY: "Remember"
(screen capture by Jörg)

Devore & Impostor scanner The scanner used by the Devore to examine Voyager in VOY: "Counterpoint" later appears as a "sacred" instrument in the hand of the impostor Mobar in VOY: "Live Fast and Prosper".


Devore scanner in VOY: "Counterpoint"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Mobar's scanner in VOY: "Live Fast and Prsper"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Penk's scanner & Lokirrim scanner Penk's scanner in VOY: "Tsunkatse" is the same as the Lokirrim device that Seven is holding in VOY: "Body and Soul".


Penk's scanner in VOY: "Tsunkatse"

(screen capture by Jörg)

Lokirrim scanner in VOY: "Body and Soul"

(screen capture by Jörg)

 

More about Computers

Variations of the TOS Desktop Monitor - investigation of its evolution and all variants, including TOS-like monitors in ENT

Variations of the TNG Desktop Monitor - investigation of its evolution and all variants, including the TNG movie monitors

Variations of the DS9 Desktop Monitor - investigation of its evolution and all variants, including other monitors of the series

Variations of the VOY Desktop Monitor - investigation of its evolution and all variants, including related monitors

Variations of TOS Computers - investigation of the evolution, variations and re-uses of the TOS computer props

Re-Used Props - Stationary Consoles - viewscreens, wall- or floor-mounted consoles

 

Credits

The TOS computer re-uses were found by Michael Minnick and Felix Ernie. Alex Müller spotted the Dinaali console.

 


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Last modified: 27.10.14  
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