Table of Contents
1. Boombox Portable Music Player
These systems came during the mid-’70s. The concept was simple: take your music on the go, anywhere and at anytime. It wasn’t uncommon to see boomboxes slung over the shoulders of people of all ages. Whether it was a beach day, a dance battle, a sporting event or a holiday, it seemed as though everyone had a boombox. Even celebrities such as Bruce Springsteen got behind the boombox craze.
The most popular brands included: JVC, Sanyo, General Electric, Panasonic, Sony and Sharp.
Boomboxes are less common today thanks to other smaller stereo systems, iPhones and portable bluetooth speakers. Did you have a boombox and what did you use it for?
2. The Clock Radio
What’s better than waking up bright and early to the sound of your favorite muscian? The clock radio served two purpsoses. It was an alarm clock and a radio that was apparently “doctor approved.”
GE released the clock radio in 1979 and many households rushed to get one.
Today the clock radio has mainly been taken over by iPhones and smart phones with the same capabilities. But who doesn’t remember waking up with a clock radio next to the bed and having to flip a switch for AM/FM radio?
3. Walkman Cassette Players
Walkman Cassette Players are a form of portable audio players. A less chunky and less loud option of the portable Boombox. It seemed as though everyone had a Walkman, and why wouldn’t you? You could listen to all your favorite musicians on the go.
The Sony Walkman was an essential part of culture.
What were you listening to on repeat on your Walkman?
4. Magnavox Color TV
TVs used to be a lot more boxy… and lower to the ground it seems. It’s hard to imagine watching your favorite shows or sports on anything but an HD flat screen these days, but we all did it.
Who still remembers their parents telling you not to sit close to the TV because it will damage your eyes?
TVs sure have come a long way and we are thankful for that.
5. The Cordless Phone
When the first cordless phone came out it was life-changing for many. It was the first big step into what would become the age of cellphones and smart phones, although we didn’t know that then.
From parents talking on the phone while doing chores around the house to kids, tweens and teens staying up late talking to friends, cordless phones changed the game of how we communicate.
While some households still have cordless phones, many have made the switch to exclusively cell phones.
6. Answering Machines
Who remembers coming home after a long day and the first thing you do is check for missed calls and messages?
Now with everything in the palm of our hands, it’s hard to imagine having no anxiety about missing messages and not checking it the second it comes in.
But what about urgent calls? Well, they had to wait too! (At least, unless you also had a pager…)
7. Vintage Turntables
There is something so nostalgic about owning and playing a record on a turntable.
The first turntable that sold millions came out in 1965 and the turntable kept evolving. There’s been a resurgence in record players in recent years as records have been making a comeback and the vintage turntables sometimes sell for a lot of money. Which records were you spinning?
8. Vintage Camcorders
Our poor shoulders! A camcorder weighing 15 pounds… and that was bragged about as the world’s lightest!
The camcorder became popular in the mid-to-late ’80s. With the rise of the camcorder came popular shows such as America’s Funniest Home Videos. Camcorders were at first mostly available for professional use only but households started to make it as essential as cameras as years went on.
Thanks to the camcorder we can relive memories from different eras.
9. AM/FM Pocket Radio
The AM/FM Pocket Radio is a compact and typically light-weight portable radio. Although it’s called the pocket radio, most people who owned one had to have some deep pockets for it to fit.
It was great for people who wanted to listen to the radio on the go. Whether you wanted to go for a bike ride, go to the gym or take it to work, you could listen to the radio whenever you wanted.
Did you ever own one of these?
10. Texas Instruments Home Computer
Texas Instruments is best known for their calculators. There is no feeling that compares to coming home the first day of school and having to ask your parents to run out and get you a TI-84. But do you remember when they also made an at-home computer in 1980?
It was a computer with educational features that helped kids and adults alike.