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First post, by Jo22

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Good evening everyone,

There's something that I noticed about our vintage hobby and that I would like to address.

In the 2000s, when LCD monitors did start to take over CRTs,
I didn't spend much thinking about the drawbacks of old school video monitors.
They were still commonly known, but already obsolete on their own by the flicker-free 100Hz/120Hz CRT TV sets from the 90s..

At the time, I had an excellent hearing, but I tinkered with video capture cards and VGA monitors (31 KHz, both LCD/TFT and CRT)
mainly and thus was not confronted anymore with the drawbacks of 15KHz vintage CRTs - radiation, life hazard through high voltage, flicker and noise.

Also, the few CRTs that I was most interested at the time were the hi-res monochrome monitors
that I loved to tinker with and they used higher frequencies, as well.
18KHz (Hercules/MDA) and 35.7KHz (Atari ST hi-res)..

Now, that I'm getting older, I didn't notice the fine whine of the 15KHz so intensely anymore, as I used to a few years ago still.
I suppose that's because of the slow loss of higher frequencies of the hearing..

So long story short, could it be that our (renewed) vintage CRT love causes pain to pets and children that we just overlook? 😨

I'm asking, because, I, like many others, like to casually record YT videos of vintage equipment..
Come to think that some of these videos 'on the other end' did already unintentionally contain harmful noise makes me sad.

Because, although the 31KHz whine of VGA CRTs technically is there, as well, it's not covered by the 44KHz/48KHz sampling rates (~10Hz to 22 to 24KHz range)
of normal video cameras and the average, mid quality loudspeakers and headphones (20 to 20.000Hz).

For something as high to be recorded, a 96KHz sampling rate (~10Hz to 48KHz range) would be needed.

Anyway, I just wanted to mention this.
Hope you don't mind. 🙁

Best regards,
Jo22

"Time, it seems, doesn't flow. For some it's fast, for some it's slow.
In what to one race is no time at all, another race can rise and fall..." - The Minstrel

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Reply 1 of 12, by Meatball

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I never noticed any whine, but I do miss the BUUUZZZZZZZZZZ, then the crackling of static. Now, there’s nothing but button “taps…”. All of the personality of older hardware never made the leap into today and tomorrow.

Last edited by Meatball on 2022-01-07, 02:06. Edited 1 time in total.

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Reply 3 of 12, by subhuman@xgtx

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I have never found the whining painful or annoying. It just makes my brain "feel fresh and stay awake" (especially coming from tv sets)
Can't describe it somehow else.

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Reply 4 of 12, by kdr

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Back when CRT televisions were still common, I could usually hear the 15.7khz whine even from another room. But most people couldn't hear it, even when I'd specifically point it out. (I can't hear the 18.4khz from a monochrome display, though.) And once a CRT is up and running, the whine will fade into the background as soon as I stop paying attention to it. It tends to get drowned out by the PSU fans and floppy drives and mechanical keyboard and cheesy awesome FM synthesizer music.

Reply 6 of 12, by Big Pink

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kdr wrote on 2022-01-07, 20:49:

Back when CRT televisions were still common, I could usually hear the 15.7khz whine even from another room.

Yes, I remember being able to tell if a TV was on in the house even if I couldn't explain how back then. If you were unlucky enough to have parents that could still hear that frequency they'd know when you had the bedroom TV on when you were supposed to be asleep.

I thought IBM was born with the world

Reply 7 of 12, by polpo

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I love that I can’t hear CRT whine any more, it does make using CRTs far more enjoyable! Drives my kids nuts, though. They ask me if I had to deal with the noise all the time, and I had to reply, well yeah, what else could we do?

Reply 8 of 12, by chinny22

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My Mac G4 has some real bad coil whine which drove me mad in the last house when my computers lived in the bedroom.
Now that they live in the front room with lots of background noise I hardly hear it.

Can't say that slight CRT buzz ever bothered me. Sad thing is I actually hear a very similar sound if it's really quiet these days, guess everyone saying loud music and headphones were a bad idea did know what they were talking about!

Reply 9 of 12, by creepingnet

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CRT noises never really bothered me much, but most of my stuff is pretty dead silent for the most part apart from a "ptew", static, maybe hum of a degausser, and a small whine on startup, and then it's quiet the rest of the time I'm running it unless I'm using some really funky graphics mode it does not like (very rare). But then I did grow up with this technology being the only thing we had. Even my 1988 NEC MultiSync II is very quiet (and somehow gotten just a hair brighter and crisper in it's time with me).

The only CRT I've ever had that drives me nuts is my 1989 Mitsubishi CS2720R which gets a nasty buzz when the screen gets super bright. However, it's kind of a cool effect when playing Dragon Warrior when the screen flashes, adds an extra impact to attacks during combat. I think truly that set just needs a recap and possibly a check-over of the degausser circuit because I don't think it's truly working right as I have patches on screen again, and it does occasionally flash a 3" circle of RGB stripes at shutdown. But when it's up, not cranked up in the brightness and contrast, and degaussed it looks amazing, vibrant, and crisp. And I can record let's plays with it because of an RCA passthrough.

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Reply 10 of 12, by Standard Def Steve

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I'm 40 and can still hear the whine of my Monitor II, sometimes from the hallway if nothing else is making any noise. It brings back memories, that's for sure! I can remember my eardrums being absolutely assaulted by the chorus of 20-30 Apple monitors whenever I'd walk into the computer lab at school. And then fighting over the precious few colour computers with my peers. Good times. 😜

I still keep a beast of a CRT TV around for console gaming, but can never hear any kind of 15.7 squeal from it. Not even when I have NTSC-level devices plugged in over composite or S-video.

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Reply 11 of 12, by Claris

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If that high pitched CRT whine doesn't bother you: Either your *old*, or somehow grown use to it.

I love my CRTs, but i can't be in a room with one for more then a few minutes before i start feeling physically ill from that high pitched noise. Iv had a few quiet CRTs though, those i keep.

Reply 12 of 12, by maxtherabbit

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Claris wrote on 2022-01-18, 23:45:

If that high pitched CRT whine doesn't bother you: Either your *old*, or somehow grown use to it.

I love my CRTs, but i can't be in a room with one for more then a few minutes before i start feeling physically ill from that high pitched noise. Iv had a few quiet CRTs though, those i keep.

It didn't bother me as a little kid, it doesn't bother me now. People are different you know. I can still hear it just fine