Sounds of the Last Century


Some memorable sounds that we’ve long forgotten.

The sound of the old fax machine, with its ‘ready’ tones and distinct printing noise, was part of the ambiance of offices a couple of decades ago. But, thanks to fax to email, this is no more. FaxFX makes it possible for you to send and receive faxes using your email account, meaning the only sounds you hear are the muted tones of your computer, laptop, or mobile device.

Since we dredged up the sound of the old fax machine, let’s get nostalgic and revisit some other old, yet familiar, sounds of the 20th Century.

  1. Dial-up Modem: Can you remember the electronic blips straining over electrified static? I know what you’re thinking, “How could I forget?” The prominent sound of these modems made late night web-surfing an impossibility.
  2. The Typewriter: The clacking sound of the typewriter dominated newspaper offices and advertising agencies for the majority of the 20th Century. It was only around the 1980s that typewriters began to give way to desktop computers.
  3. The VCR: The high pitched whine of a VCR rewinding is the sound that tormented people as it withheld them from their movies. This was followed by the clunk of the tape reaching its starting point – a classic soundtrack to ‘90s home viewing.


With modern technology, like fax to email, we no longer have to endure these sounds. And while most of us don’t miss them, we do feel somewhat nostalgic when remembering them.

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