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Old underappreciated technology?

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stevenStefano

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Recently I bought a new phone and as usual when you get something new you look forward to it, but for probably the first time ever when buying a new phone, I was actually a little sad to see the end of my old one. I had an HTC Hero and this thing was basically bulletproof, never let me down at all and never went wrong. This got me thinking that it is pretty cool when you can become attached to something so impersonal and despite something not being as flashy as when it came out, you still admire how reliable it is

So the point of this thread. Does anyone else have any electronic devices or anything like that that they've had for a long time that perhaps have sort of been forgotten about that wish to sing the praises of and never want to replace?
 

cnochef

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Tube amps, record players, analog recordings. These audio components are still treasured by many of us. Interestingly, NAD (a Canadian company) has made both an amplifier and box that does DAC (digital to analog conversion) which "unpacks" mp3 digital files and gives them back the range and complexity of analog recordings. Peachtree audio has a similar amplifier and speakers system. Fatman makes tube amplifiers that dock your iPod.
 

stereo.pete

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Tube amps, record players, analog recordings. These audio components are still treasured by many of us. Interestingly, NAD (a Canadian company) has made both an amplifier and box that does DAC (digital to analog conversion) which "unpacks" mp3 digital files and gives them back the range and complexity of analog recordings. Peachtree audio has a similar amplifier and speakers system. Fatman makes tube amplifiers that dock your iPod.
Ditto!
 

Marko Tsourkan

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I never became attached to a cell phone. That is probably the reason why I don't own one. :)
 

mr drinky

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I would also agree with the stereo comments. Some days I search eBay just to dream about McIntosh equipment in all their tubular glory, and I have also looked at that Fatman set up.

Another 'advance' that I don't care for are the electric switches that move the seats back and forth in cars. I like the simple latches that let you freely move the seat quickly without waiting forever and having the car on. Also super complicated washer and dryers that try to 'understand' your clothes drive me nuts. I was very sad the day my old one broke.

k.
 

WildBoar

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x4 on the audio gear. Sadly my 29 year old tt is now out of commission, so I need to find someone to rehab it, or go for a new one.

I'll throw in cars as well. The newest we have is on 04, but I really like driving the 87 the best; no power steering, limited brake boost, no stability management, etc.
 

ajhuff

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I hate electric can openers. My wrist still works fine.

-AJ
 

unkajonet

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Windows XP. While not a Bill Gates fanboy, I gotta say he really hit it out of the park on that one.

Not electronics, I know, but close enough.
 

Deckhand

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The lightbulb, water heater, house heater, internet. Some of those aren't completely electronic, but have electric componenets. All of which I am very grateful for.
 

Eamon Burke

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Hand tools of all varieties. Skip the ********, stop setting up things, just do the work.

Swiss army knives. They'll put up with more than you think.

My old 1992 Honda Accord DX. Ran great, and got 28mpg when I sold it for $800. It had 336,000 miles on it.

Manual transmissions in general. You can drive them when they are broken, what's better than that?!

Toilets. Seriously, I am constantly boggled by how amazing it is that there is a thing we use every day that has such a serious impact on our level of disease and contamination, it basically makes our waste magically disappear, and it's powered by a clever arrangement of pipes, and nothing else.



Truth is, I've not found much love for electronics. I kind of feel like the more time goes on, the better they get. It's the stuff BEFORE the digital world that blows it out of the water. We traded quality of life for quantity of life.
 

clayton

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Plus one on the Swiss army knife. About 4 years ago I switched from a folder to a Swiss army knife as my EDC. It does so much more than the folder (a little lacking in the stabbing department but I don't stab often). Much lighter than a leatherman and more comfortable to use. As an added plus it does not scare "civilians" when you pull it out. I use the Victorinox Swiss Army Pioneer 3.5, which is the same as the Swiss army issue, the only difference is the key ring.
 

mr drinky

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I don't know, I've had a cork screw snap on my swiss army knife before. I haven't bought another since. Then I switched to Gerber tools, and that broke too. Multi-tools are low on my list these days.

k.
 

El Pescador

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I miss my 1970 ford bronco. hand crank windows, heater, radio. Very few parts compared to a new car. And the 302 was super cheap to fix.
 

Eamon Burke

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I miss my 1970 ford bronco. hand crank windows, heater, radio. Very few parts compared to a new car. And the 302 was super cheap to fix.
I almost bought a bronco when I was a teenager working at a dealership--salesman sold it out from under me. I just detailed it, but I fell in love with that thing. Truly a working machine, and functional beauty IMO.
 

clayton

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I don't know, I've had a cork screw snap on my swiss army knife before. I haven't bought another since. Then I switched to Gerber tools, and that broke too. Multi-tools are low on my list these days.

k.
The model I use has no cork screw. Have had no issues for years now, but of course there is always a compromise when going the multitool route.
 

ecchef

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I still mourn the passing of the petrol carburettor.
I prefer anything with analog controls over digital.
The one piece of technology that I recently fell in love with is the Toto Washlet. The only thing it doesn't do is bake cookies.
 

oivind_dahle

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Oh no. Its just a comment ton BurkeCutlery´s " We traded quality of life for quantity of life".

But quantity is quality :)
 

ecchef

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I hope your not in any way idolizing a man who killed over 30 million people during his reign...
It's just a quote Pesky. I'm sure that idolizing Uncle Joe was the furthest thing from O's mind.
 

Craig

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Converting mp3s back to analog formats makes no sense to me. It'd be like displaying standard definition tv on a hdtv hoping for high definition picture.
 

Eamon Burke

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Quantity has a quality all its own - Joseph Stalin
:lol2:
Spoken like a true collector!

That's another definition of "quality"...that's the lowercase one, not the capitalized one that is described in Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.
 

geezr

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Tube amps, record players, analog recordings. These audio components are still treasured by many of us................................
Replaced my phono cartridge this weekend and hear more of the information contained on those old LPs, some were produced in the early 1960’s. Keeping my records :thumbsup: Tube amp and preamp.
 

The Edge

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I'll add another +1 for audio equipment. ( I also dream of a McIntosh amp) And, although not under appreciated here, wet/oil stones. I mean how is it that taking 15 minutes out of your week to maintain a knife has become unbearable for most of the world. Only thing else that comes to mind is wood pellet ovens, and charcoal grills. I think the world has become far too obsessed with wanting things now, rather than waiting a little bit longer to get quality goods that will enrich their lives.
 

slowtyper

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Manual transmissions in general. You can drive them when they are broken, what's better than that?!
I have always had a stick shift but now, living in probably the worst traffic in north america, I am officially sick of it. However, that might also have to do with having an older car which is starting to show its age and not exactly comfortable to sit in.

Next car I get will definitely be an auto though. And also easy to get in and out of. I feel old....

I still remember the first time I learned to start my car by popping the clutch (battery had died when I left the lights on overnight, as I did fairly often). I felt like I had discovered a new planet and was telling everybody about it.
 

Lucretia

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ogg files aren't too bad--they beat the snot out of mp3s. You can really hear a difference. We're probably going to start converting all our vinyl albums to digital in spite of the loss in quality. They just take up too much space.

Love my stick shift, but probably will get an automatic for the next car. Went on a road trip with some friends in college in an old Opel with a dead battery. We had to look for a hill to park on every where we went so that the driver could pop the clutch to get it going. Otherwise we had to push...:(

I've got a weed puller called "Grandpa's Weeder". Cast iron head with jaws and a lever on a pole--you push the jaws over a weed like a dandelion, rock the pole to close the jaws, and out pops the weed. No chemicals, no electricity, and best of all--no bending. Simple and elegant.
 

Eamon Burke

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I have always had a stick shift but now, living in probably the worst traffic in north america, I am officially sick of it. However, that might also have to do with having an older car which is starting to show its age and not exactly comfortable to sit in.

Next car I get will definitely be an auto though. And also easy to get in and out of. I feel old....

I still remember the first time I learned to start my car by popping the clutch (battery had died when I left the lights on overnight, as I did fairly often). I felt like I had discovered a new planet and was telling everybody about it.


I feel you. I have been blessed to live in a situation that is pretty free of traffic. I hate gridlock in a stick, but it's only because everyone else is busy trashing their transmissions because their quads are lazy.

When I had my clutch give out, I had to learn to start it in first(because thankfully the switch broke too), and shift without a clutch. No clutch, no ignition switch, no fourth gear, no problem. I felt the same way. I'm always doing it just so I don't forget how.
 

Craig

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ogg files aren't too bad--they beat the snot out of mp3s. You can really hear a difference. We're probably going to start converting all our vinyl albums to digital in spite of the loss in quality. They just take up too much space.

Love my stick shift, but probably will get an automatic for the next car. Went on a road trip with some friends in college in an old Opel with a dead battery. We had to look for a hill to park on every where we went so that the driver could pop the clutch to get it going. Otherwise we had to push...:(

I've got a weed puller called "Grandpa's Weeder". Cast iron head with jaws and a lever on a pole--you push the jaws over a weed like a dandelion, rock the pole to close the jaws, and out pops the weed. No chemicals, no electricity, and best of all--no bending. Simple and elegant.
If you can really tell the difference between analog sound and high-bitrate mp3s (which most people can't, usually they just hear the loss of "warmth" from a record which isn't the same thing as audio quality) then instead of looking at OGG Vorbis you should take a look at FLAC. OGG Vorbis will produce very similar results to mp3s but with slightly smaller file sizes. FLAC is a lossless format, so you don't compromise on audio quality at all. The files will be a lot bigger, but when you can get a 3 TB hard drive for under $200, there's really no reason to care.

Personally, I don't have the sound system or the ears to really notice a big difference between mp3s and everything else, so I'm happy with them.
 
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