If you’ve ever used a real TeleType machine or seen a movie with a newsroom, you know that one TeleType makes a lot of noise and several make even more.[CuriousMarc] acquired the silent replacement, a real wonder of its day, the TI Silent 703. The $2,600 machine was portable if you think hauling a 25-pound suitcase around is portable. In 1971, it was definitely a step up.
The machine used a thermal printer, could have a built-in acoustic coupler for talking over the phone. You could also get a dual tape drive that acted like a mostly silent paper tape reader and punch.
Of course, thermal printers require thermal paper, which has its own issues. [Marc] doesn’t just turn the machine on, but connects it through an RS232 analyzer and scope to get it working as a real I/O device. He also tears into it, something you probably couldn’t do back in the day since you probably leased them rather than pay the total price which is almost $18,000 today.
There was surprisingly little inside and, of course, compared to a real TeleType, very few mechanical parts. If you remove the printer and power supply, there’s a simple CPU board and a modem board, none of which look terribly sophisticated. The highlight, though, is watching it trade traffic with an ASR33.