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Noisy Sounds

What Causes Dial-Up Modems To Produce Noisy Sounds When Connected To The Internet?

If You Have Ever Used Dial-Up Modems And Accessed The Internet With Them, You Must Be Familiar With The Noise And Noise Produced By Them When Connecting To A Wide Web Network. 

Noisy Sounds, The sounds produced by dial-up modems, which were forgotten with the advent of ADSL technology and have now become nostalgic, seemed very loud, especially when connected to the Internet at night, but have you ever wondered why the relevant sounds are produced when connected? What happened to a dial-up modem?

To answer this question and understand it further, it is better first to get a little more familiar with the modem component and its importance in accessing the wide web network or, in other words, the Internet.

However, as mentioned earlier, with the advent of ADSL technology and now VDSL, Internet access speed has increased significantly. All previous problems, including noise generation at the time of connection, have been forgotten, but since the dial-up modems and the sound they produce are for people who have been using the Internet for a long time.

The last decade and more goes back to nostalgia, so reading on can bring back sweet memories, and some questions may be answered. Stay with us.

In the past, people had to use peripherals called dial-up modems to access online services or establish a connection between two computers remotely.

Dial-up modems have been designed to operate on normal telephone network lines that connect almost all homes and offices around the modern, developed world today.

After installing an internal dial-up modem on a motherboard and placing it inside a case (or using external modems), the computer using special software (modem driver, etc.) can dial the phone number that the modem to connect to The Internet must determine who to contact.

Accordingly, after dialing, your modem is connected to another modem (actually another computer) on the other side of the home phone line. Then the necessary conditions for data sharing, such as files or various messages, are made possible.

 The word Modem is actually a combination of two other words called “Modulate” and “Demodulate.”

The main task of modem devices is to receive digital data and then convert it. In other words, modulate it into audio frequencies that can be sent through home telephone lines/networks designed to send and receive analog sound waves.

The modem installed on the computer on the other side of the dialed telephone line receives the analog audio signals, the process of converting them, or in other words, demodulating them into binary data understood by personal computers.

A similar design was used to store digital data on compressed audio and analog cassettes in the personal computer age of the 1970s and 1980s.

Since ADSL technology also connects to the Internet through the home network of telephone lines, the hidden behind-the-scenes design of the broadband network is still the same, with limitations such as scarcity only with technology upgrades and fixes.

High speed of data transfer (download and upload), interruption and telephone occupation, etc., have been eliminated.

What caused the sound to be generated when connected to the Internet?

If you have ever picked up a phone while connecting to the Internet or afterward and listened to the production sound, you must have heard different types of noise such as screaming, hissing, ringing, etc.

Mr. Dale Hartrington, the circuit designer of the first dial-up modem with direct connection and speaker, has stated that the above noises are, in fact, real sounds of sending and receiving data over the telephone line.

It has been said before that digital data is converted into audio signals by a computer (modem). Then in a computer (modem), the conversion operation is reversed, and the sound waves are twice converted into digital and binary data understood by the computer.

When digital data is converted to audio signals, the process of sending and receiving them over the voice network of home phones results in sounds similar to those heard over the telephone.

If we want to go into a little more detail, the sounds produced at the beginning of the Internet connection process are actually related to the “Handshaking” operation by the two modems at the beginning and end of the telephone line.

This operation is called the negotiation process between two systems through the exchange of information required to establish communication protocols such as data transfer speed, methods used for transmission, settings, etc.

But now, the question that arises is whether it is necessary to hear the relevant sounds by dial-up modems when connecting to the Internet and performing the handshake process or not?

Noisy Sounds

Before 1984, AT&T was the sole proprietor of the United States telephone network.

The company at the time had stringent rules regarding the connection of electronic devices such as modems to the telephone network, which themselves sometimes caused various problems.

To circumvent the relevant rules, early modems had a device called an acoustic pair.

This device allowed the modems to communicate acoustically or audio with the telephone network, while the essence of the modem is an electronic device!

To use an acoustic paired modem, one must first pick up a landline, enter a number, and then wait for another person or modem to answer the call on the other end of the line.

Noisy Sounds

Following the FCC’s new rules in 1970 and the failure to comply with previous rules, AT&T began the process of building direct-connection modems that made it possible to communicate directly with the telephone system through two modules or modular hubs.

Although this process has been easier in its own right, there are still various limitations to the idea.

For example, if a direct contact modem fails to communicate, there are no more transmitters on your side to be aware of this.

For example, the number line may be occupied by the modem, or instead of answering the call by another modem, a fax machine or answering machine may answer the call!

To solve this problem, the American company that manufactured dial-up modems (Hayes Microcomputer Products) installed an internal speaker in the modem circuit introduced for personal computers in 1981 under Hayes Stack Smartmodem 300.

In this case, if the line is busy or instead of a modem, a real person or a fax machine answered the call, the sender can be notified via the speaker.

After introducing the dial-up modem, almost all products released after were equipped with some audio feedback to provide feedback to the person on the Internet connection, without the need for a landline phone.

Noisy Sounds