submitted 2 months ago by tester1121 to c/nostupidquestions

I have noticed phones with a handset (like the one in the image) have a little cover that resembles something like a cold camera shoe under the bottom of the handset's top speaker holder. Is there a use for it? It has a line bump in the middle, but it doesn't go all the way from both sides, it leaves a gap. I have also seem some of them have extra space on the top of the cover, and some don't.

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[-] [email protected] 140 points 2 months ago

What in the world is a cold camera shoe?

[-] I_Fart_Glitter 56 points 2 months ago

It's a slot on a camera that you can use to attach accessories, like a microphone or flash. A hot shoe provides power to the accessory, a cold shoe does not.

[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 months ago
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[-] AnUnusualRelic 10 points 2 months ago

Well, see what a hot camera shoe is?

Just Leave it outside for a while, and there you are.

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[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 months ago

Its a non-powered version of a hot shoe, both of which are the thing you use to mount an external flash that's on the top of a lot of (all?) full sized cameras.

[-] [email protected] 112 points 2 months ago

Why would you attach an image that does not show what you are referring to?

[-] AnUnusualRelic 44 points 2 months ago

See fig. 1 (unrelated)

[-] hperrin 95 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

If you’re talking about this thing, it serves two purposes. It is the hook that opens and closes the line (hangs up and picks up the phone), and it is used by this thing

to keep the handset from falling off the base when it’s mounted on a wall.

[-] hperrin 80 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

Or maybe you meant this thing. Yeah, it keeps the handset in when the base is mounted vertical. You can see that it’s slanted in the back.

That’s so it slides in and out on this other slanted lip on the handset instead of getting caught on it. You can take the handset off just by pulling it directly away from the wall.

[-] hperrin 72 points 2 months ago

Btw, on Trimline phones it is reversible for if you’re not hanging it on a wall. It looks like this when you pull it out.

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[-] [email protected] 40 points 2 months ago

Exactly this. It’s called a “hook” and when the phone is “off the hook” that’s the thing it is off of. Being off the hook means the phone is powered up and connected to the local loop. When the phone is “on hook” that means it is disconnected from the loop and awaiting the pulsed ring signal.

Desk phones have a reversible hook so that it keeps the button depressed when the phone is in the cradle but doesn’t catch when you attempt to pick it up.

On modem signals in the old days, the + was equivalent to “flashing” the hook, or quickly disconnecting and reconnecting to the loop, and the AT command H1 told the modem to go “on hook” while H0 told it to go “off hook”.

Back before the DTMF network, when everyone used pulse modulated phones, the “pulses” were caused by going in and off hook in a specific pattern. You could actually make a phone call from a rotary payphone by flashing the hook in the pattern that mimicked the rotary dial pulsing the line as it rotated back to home position.

In the really old days, the hand crank served much the same purpose, but actually supplied electricity to the local loop; when the phone was on hook (which was a big metal thing the earpiece sat in) someone else turning the crank would make all the phones on the loop ring; you picked up if the ring matched the number of rings for your extension.

[-] hperrin 8 points 2 months ago

Yes! Another phone nerd!

One small clarification. There’s not really anything special to the pulses for pulse dialing. One pulse for the number 1, all the way to nine pulses for number 9, and then ten pulses for a number 0.

[-] froh42 9 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

In the 80s there was a way to cheat phone booths in Germany: With a small tool that had an adjustment screw you could position the hook switch to an exact position where the phone booth had already connected the line but did not yet power up the rest of the machinery (including coin counters)

You could then call arbitrary nunbers by pulse dialing using the hook switch (the rotary dial was still powered down)

Basically a EU pulse dial version of phreaking.

My father, who died this year, used this a lot too make "free" calls in the 80s.

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[-] hperrin 26 points 2 months ago

Much better than the older design which cannot be mounted on the wall.

[-] hperrin 23 points 2 months ago

And the even older design that didn’t even have a bell integrated in the base. The bell was in a separate bell box.

[-] hperrin 29 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

Or one of these real old designs that didn’t even have a bell. It has a buzzer that’s barely audible (it might even just be the phone’s speaker, idk). Also, the microphone and the earpiece aren’t in a convenient handset.

This one is a replica made in probably the 1970s or 1980s. It’s funny, when it was made it was a replica of something vintage, but now it actually is vintage.

[-] Vacationlandgirl 16 points 2 months ago

You have a very interesting phone collection and I appreciate you sharing! Unlocked memories I didn't even know I had! 😃

[-] A_Very_Big_Fan 14 points 2 months ago

Huge props for the unexpected old phone exhibition. It was very interesting, thank you :3

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[-] [email protected] 20 points 2 months ago

Well, cannot be wall-mounted like the one in your picture but those phones did get wall-mounted in slightly different shape. 1000038469

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[-] AnUnusualRelic 8 points 2 months ago

Like and follow for more astonishing technologies from bygone eras!

(Do people really no longer have phones on their desks or what?)

[-] OneLemmyMan 92 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

could had posted a picture of a horse it would be just as helpful but a lot funnier

[-] XbSuper 68 points 2 months ago

You're description only leaves me with more questions. I have no idea what you're talking about, and therefore have no answer.

[-] [email protected] 31 points 2 months ago

Lots of people in this thread answering the question but they're kind of just guessing what you're talking about.

Perhaps you could circle the bit in question because it's either a holder for the headset or a way to mount the entire device onto a wall or something else depending on if we've interpreted your words correctly.

[-] [email protected] 22 points 2 months ago

English is not my first language and I don't understand what camera shoe mean. But I think I know what you're asking for. That phones can be mounted on a wall and what you're asking for is there so the handset doesn't fall off.

[-] yenahmik 49 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

It's ok. English is my first language and I don't understand what OP means by "cold camera shoe."

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[-] [email protected] 12 points 2 months ago

Native English speaker here, I don't have a clue what a "cold camera shoe" means either...

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[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

This is the camera shoe for a Sony DSLR

Edit: note that this is a "hot" shoe because it has contacts that can power accessories. A cold shoe is just a mount. You can use to to attach a flash or a microphone for example

[-] [email protected] 22 points 2 months ago
[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 months ago* (last edited 2 months ago)

I'm pretty old and even have a camera that uses these things, and took a class on photography; never heard them called a shoe until reading this thread. 🤷🏻‍♂️

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[-] FrickAndMortar 14 points 2 months ago

Not sure if this is what you’re describing, but phones like the one you pictured have a reversible tab for use if you mount the phone to a wall - if the tab is sticking up, it keeps the receiver from falling off the cradle.

Here’s a site selling them, but it has a diagram showing where it’s located:


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[-] [email protected] 11 points 2 months ago
[-] [email protected] 22 points 2 months ago

The intersection of people who aren't five figures into photography and know what a hot shoe is, and people who recognize a wall mount phone trend old.

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[-] [email protected] 9 points 2 months ago

It's for a hook to keep the handset on when the phone is mounted flat on a wall. It can usually be slid/folded down or removed when its not need.

[-] [email protected] 8 points 2 months ago

It holds the receiver in place. Generally the ridged end is used for wall hanging installs, the flat end stores it away until needed since the desk is horizontal.

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this post was submitted on 05 Dec 2023
69 points (70.7% liked)

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