So long to Apple’s startup chime

Lost among all the talk streamlined ports, missing function keys and MagSafeless power, was mention of the fact that the company has also quietly ditched one of the more iconic pieces of the Apple ecosystem for the new MacBook Pro. The F-sharp chime that has greeted users on startup since 1998 is a casualty of the new laptop’s instant boot up.

The change was spotted on an Apple FAQ page, which notes that the chime is no longer part of the process for resetting the machine’s NVRAM, which has the unfortunate side effect of making the process a little less straight forward without the familiar accompanying soundtrack.

The startup sound has been around in one form or another since the early days of the Macintosh, finally settling on the most recent sound in the late-90s. Apple describes it thusly in a patent filed a year after its introduction, “[the chime] consists of a sound mark consisting of a slightly flat (by approximately 30 cents) G flat/F sharp major chord.”

It’s like Elvis Costello says, filing a patent for a chime is like dancing about architecture.