Back to the future: 10 retro technologies that refuse to die

10 retro technologies

There are few things that age well – take Twinkies or George Clooney, for example. However, techies know that “cutting-edge” technology usually means a lifespan of around two years, give and take. Yet, there are some formerly mainstream tech that’s still being manufactured or utilized today, for one reason or another. No need to crank up the time machine, below are some of our favorite old things.

Sony CFDS50 CD and Cassette Boombox with FM/AM radio ($50)

Sony CFDS50

Sony advertises this boombox as “equipped with everything you need,” but to be honest, it’s pretty much equipped with everything you might need two decades ago. It retails for a mere $50 and comes outfitted with a CD and cassette player, along with an AM-FM radio that will surely have you fumbling for the antenna regardless of the weather overhead. You can even take this bad boy with you on-the-go, assuming you have six C batteries laying around the house. But, in emergency situations where electricity isn’t available, radios like this can be lifesavers.

Available from:

Amazon B&H

Royal Epoch Manual Typewriter ($200)

Royal Epoch Manual Typewriter

Typewriters were the workhorses for most of the 20th-century. Yet, despite the arrival of computer-based word processing, typewriters have endured. We imagine most of them are being used by aspiring authors and poets, or conspiracy theorists with an innate distrust of the Web and technology. For these folks, there’s the Royal Epoch, a prime example that offers the age-old click and clack of a traditional typewriter, although we aren’t sure if it’s for function or decoration.

Available from:


Nikon FM-10 35mm SLR analog film camera ($570)

Nikon FM-10 35mm SLR Camera

Finding a new 35mm-film SLR may seem like a tall order. However, Nikon still sells its manual FM10 – which hasn’t changed since 1995 – while Fujifilm continues to produce and sell the wide-angle Klasse W in Japan. They utilize film and allow access to manual exposure controls, though, they aren’t as useful when it comes to capturing duck-faced selfies. But, like younger generations rediscovering vinyl records, there’s a small but growing interest for film cameras (Lomography has plenty of film cameras to sell you)And, many professionals enjoy the creative aspects and image quality that only analog can produce.

Available from:

Amazon Adorama Nikon

Morgan 4/4 ($38.646)

Morgan 4/4

Nearly 80 years ago, the Morgan Motor Company debuted the 4/4. As the name might imply, the 4/4 donned four separate wheels, which was also a first for the English automaker. The two-seater was initially updated in 1955 and again in 2009, but it has always retained its classic design through each iteration. The engine and gearbox have been given an overhaul, though, making the vintage coup’s $38,000 price tag a bit more reasonable.

Available from:

Morgan Motor Company

Casio DBC32-1A Data Bank Watch ($25)

Casio DBC32-1A Data Bank Watch

The wristwatch industry may be in the midst of a major shakeup given the the recent release of the Apple Watch, but Casio’s iconic calculator wristwatch has endured since the 1980s. Casio’s Data Bank is designed to last years instead of mere hours, though, while conveniently providing you with a digital phonebook, calendar, and calculator to match. It won’t burden you with notifications or calls, either, which kind of makes it function akin to your typical smartwatch when in “Do Not Disturb Mode.” Right?

Available from:

Amazon Target

Next Page: 5 more pieces of retro tech

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