General Question

amaya's avatar

What sound does typing make?

Asked by amaya (7points) March 23rd, 2016

I need similar sounds that compare to the question, like typing sounds like nails

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

21 Answers

XOIIO's avatar

I don’t really think there is anything else that sounds like typing, or if there is, it’s been long forgotten. It’s a pretty specific sort of sound.

dxs's avatar

plick plick plick plick plick plick

Seek's avatar

Are you looking for a metaphor or an onomatopoeia?

Jeruba's avatar

Typing on a typewriter? a real one, a manual or electric typewriter? How many people are there around now who’ve ever even seen one? (Yes, there are still several of them around my house.)

Or do you mean “typing” on a computer keyboard or other electronic device?

JeSuisRickSpringfield's avatar

Clicking, clacking, or tapping would all work.

jaytkay's avatar

Hail on a tin roof or car roof or on windows

Pizzicato strings

A better demonstration of pizzicato

zenvelo's avatar

tip tip tip tip tip tippy tippy tip tip


flutherother's avatar

A lady hurrying down a cobbled street in high heels.

Response moderated (Unhelpful)
CWOTUS's avatar

Welcome to Fluther.

Realizing that you may never have heard an actual typewriter in the wild – so to speak – and are not just looking for “words to describe” (and maybe you’ve never seen what can be found on YouTube) … here are typewriter sounds.

LuckyGuy's avatar

rat a tat tat.

@flutherother Love it!

ibstubro's avatar

Clacking is probably the traditional description.
Sounds rather like rain shower on a loose tin roof.

CWOTUS's avatar

A better sound might be sleet or light hail on a tin roof. But really, how many people in an urban or even suburban environment even heard that?

Espiritus_Corvus's avatar

@CWOTUS has given the best example above in the hyperlink to both manual and electric typewriter sounds.

Before copying machines, there were typing pools. This is what an average typing pool in the 1950’s sounded like. Every company of size had one. Many were vast with hundreds of typists literally banging away making copies of legal documents, correspondence and inter-office memos. They were deafening environments. Newspaper offices were the same.

The bells you hear are the carriage return. The paper, rolled around the typewriter’s platen, was then advanced vertically by the “carriage return” lever (at the far left, or sometimes on the far right) into position for each new line of text. A small bell was struck to warn the operator when the side lever had to be used to shift the paper back to the beginning of each line

This is the classic Typewriter Symphony. It gives you a good example of what a manual typewriter sounded like. The percussionist/typist makes excellent use of the clacking of the keys, the slamming of the carriage, and the carriage return bell.

Welcome to Fluther.

kritiper's avatar

Rapid fire clicks or clacks, stuttered somewhat. My mother could type 80 words a minute. Plus the sound of the carriage being returned, a zipping sound. When the carriage would reach the end of it’s rightward travel, a bell would sound. Ding.

Seek's avatar

Tackatackatackatacka-tak-tak-tak (backspace) Tacka-tacka-tackatackatackatacka-tak-tak-tackatackatacka-tak-tackatackatacka

Strauss's avatar

Welcome to Fluther. I was raised raised on a manual typewriter. This link has a lot of the sounds mentioned above (with the exception of the hail on a tin roof, which can be deafening).

I also remember my first experience on an IBM Selectric®. This was after I had been discharged, and I thought the sound of the repeating backspace resembled mortars being launched rapid-fire from a distance.

Coloma's avatar

If you get a particular rhythm going, typing sounds like a horse trotting, cantering or galloping.

Jeruba's avatar

@Seek, that’s the closest, if you ask me. And then ching for the carriage return bell, yes?

The sound of typing on an old standard Royal was a more basic sound in my childhood than radio or TV or washing machine. Even into the 1980s the distinctive tapping of typewriter keys was still everywhere in my life.

Kids, the carriage, which includes the long cylindrical black platen that the paper goes around, actually moves as you type. You get to the end of a line and you hear a bell that tells you it’s time to end the line and move down. Otherwise you will hit a hard margin setting that keeps you from going off the edge of the page (unless you hit MAR REL, and then you’re on your own). You’re supposed to be typing without looking at the keyboard or the page, so you need this margin warning. When you hear it, you pull the carriage return lever and the page advances to the start of a new line.

But I’m still guessing that the OP isn’t asking about an actual typewriter. I suggest that the OP is a student outside the U.S. who has a school assignment to come up with a phrase comparing something very familiar—the sound of “typing” on an electronic keyboard—to something else. She(?) probably had no intention of triggering this nostalgia rip in the geriatric ward.

Pachy's avatar

The best way or at least the simplest way I can describe it is this:

a computer keyboard is click-click-click.

a typewriter is clunk-clunk-clunk.

Of course, different keyboards produce different sounds.

ibstubro's avatar

A computer keyboard typing at full tilt reminds me of corn popping in a thin aluminum sauce pan.

I suppose we should have asked what we were typing on?
Or specified what keyboard sound we were describing?

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