737 overhead monitors - phasing out?


Aug 20, 2002
Was on a 737-400 Friday 25-Jul (US #850) and the overhead monitors were gone, with a blanking panel covering them.

Return flight on Sunday 27-Jul (US #1624) had them. Same model. Are these coming out as the planes go in for major maintenance?

Makes sense, I guess, since there's no movies on the routes any of these jets fly anymore.
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Interesting. I hadn't realized that US had two types of -400's. But I also couldn't recall ever being on one that didn't have one either.

But my bigger question was, that rather than continue to maintain them, I wondered if they were just being phased out.

When's the last time these ever played anything other than the safety briefing and 10,000 foot advisory?

Is it possible that the aircraft never had them? Or perhaps they were removed from that one aircraft? There are two types of 737-400 in the fleet, some of which never had the TV monitors.

Once upon a time, 737-300's were flown on Midcon routes to LAX and SFO-they replaced the 727's I believe. On some longer routes on 737's they showed movies, but not since at least the late 80's or early 90's.

Regarding 737-400's, they have 737-401's which were designed originally for Piedmont, and 737-4B7's which were designed for US Air-I think the US Air ones had entertainment units while the Piedmonts didn't (I am sure someone here knows better than I).
There are currently 24 B734's that are not equipped with video equipment. Tail numbers 437 and higher. Tails 404-436 are still equipped with video monitors. With the B733 fleet you used to be able to tell which had the video monitors and which didn't by the tail numbers. The 300 series tail numbers were short range airplanes and didn't have the aux tanks or video monitors. The 500 series airplanes were equipped with aux tanks and video monitors and were the airplanes used to operate to the west coast. The table is showing that 5 of the B733's with a 500 series tail number no longer have video equipment. Most all of the aux tanks have been deactivated on all the B733 and B734 airplanes, and some have been removed. Perhaps AOG would know if they are pulling the video equipment out of these airplanes. If I were to venture a guess, I sould suspect that we are since we no longer offer inflight entertainment with these airplanes. If you remove the aux tanks and the video equipment, you are lightening up the airplane.