A retro-modern speaker to revive fond memories of the good old radio player

A classic speaker design fused with the most upbeat features and audio technology gives me no reason to disbelief this concept’s potential to rock the audio market, just like Marshall does!

Most of the speakers on the market have adopted a more modern approach that zooms in on the aesthetic appeal and of course the audio output. However, brands like Marshall have created a niche with a very exciting fusion of retro with the modern, and their audio prowess is at the next level. All this gives them a distinct space and a dedicated fan following amongst audiophiles. Now another cool speaker concept ignites my excitement in the retro-modern fusion of audio equipment, and it is more like a classic low-rider of the speaker world.

Designer: Back Quote

This is the Memory retro-style speaker which looks like a 1967 radio taken for a spin and magically turned into a shiny new audio boombox ready to rock any party. A speaker Elvis Presley would have loved to own in his era. Memory has the typical shiny chrome feel to it, perfectly complemented by the off-white hue. The speaker has a frequency response of 50Hz – 20KHz which should cover all the human audible frequency ranges in the music. It can connect to mobile devices via Bluetooth or wired connection. Also, it gets wireless charging capability which is a big advantage. All these features make the Memory retro speaker utterly desirable from every perspective.

The volume toggle and the bass boost knobs are so dope, I instantly traverse to another realm. A time and place in the yesteryears where things were a lot simpler and the little material joys of life meant like the whole world. This retro speaker evokes that comforting feeling every time I look at it. No doubt, I desperately want this accessory to see the light of day, and I’m sure all you audiophiles too want this to be a real thing!


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DIY music box design lets users compose their own nostalgic melodies in three simple steps

The Make Your Own Music Box is a music box design from Kikkerland Design that lets users compose their own melodies for the music box to play.

There’s nothing quite so nostalgic as a music box. One look inside grandma’s old jewelry box that plays “Over The Rainbow,” or even at big coin-operated music boxes in train stations and bars can bring us back before our time. Music boxes have been around for centuries, but they’ve managed to hold onto their charm. Since 1922, Kikkerland Design has been producing toys and memorabilia to fascinate the masses and bring us back to simpler times. Today, they’ve released a music box that allows users to compose their own tune.

Designer: Kikkerland Design

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Kikkerland Design’s Make Your Own Music Box Kit comes with everything you might need to compose your own tune and listen back to it. Complete with strips of lined music paper, each user has the opportunity to make their own music by hole punching the music paper with melodies and harmonies for the music box to capture and reproduce. Describing the process, Kikkerland design notes, “The easy to use Music Box hole puncher allows you to create your own melodies on lined paper strips and play them on the mechanism provided.”

To help get the ball rolling, Kikkerland Design provides the sheet music for “Happy Birthday,” allowing users to get a feel for what melodies look and sound like on the sheet music and music box. Along with that, the Make Your Own Music Box comes with a music box hole punch, sheet music strips, and a music box mechanism that works together to play newly composed music. Users simply hole punch a sheet music strip with a melody and insert the strip into the music box before winding it up and hearing it in real-time.

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East India’s Ektara gets reinterpreted as this modern string instrument for today’s folk musicians!

The Sukhtara is a modern reinterpretation of East India’s Ektara string instrument, whose origins date back a millennium.

Musical instruments have helped characterize cultures for millennia. In East India, sometime between 1700 B.C. and 7th-century C.E., the Ektara was produced and became a beloved instrument for East Indian folk musicians. Entirely made from natural materials, the Ektara hasn’t gone through many updates since its earlier productions.

As a result, today’s folk music enthusiasts and antiquarians alike haven’t modernized the ancient instrument. Arnab Patra, a design student based in India, has recently finished work on giving the Ektara a much-needed structural update to bring the beloved instrument back into the mainstream discourse and use.

Dubbed Sukhtara, the updated instrument still keeps the Ektara’s familiar wooden build. Constructed from a coconut or gourd shell, bamboo, metal string, wood, and goatskin, Sukhtara is the culmination of a lot of revision work from Patra.

For instance, the original Ektara’s tuning hole increased in size with more playing time. Considering its bamboo build, the bamboo tuning peg would consistently push further into the bamboo tuning hole until the hole was so big, the peg would always turn loose.

In constructing Sukhtara, Patra aimed to solve this tuning problem by replacing the bamboo tuning peg with a metal butterfly tuner, similar to those found on guitars and violins. Sukhtara’s tuning box can be found at the top of the instrument where it forms a small bridge between the two bamboo arms and soundbars, creating a space for the instrument’s metal string to wrap around for tuning.

While the changes might seem small, they’re necessary for the cultural instrument to remain in modern use. Following contemporary instrumental structuring, the Sukhtara enhances Ektara’s aesthetics, building materials, and playing styles for the modern instrumentalist to reawaken the music of the past.

Designer: Arnab Patra

While Patra maintained the instruments build, some adjustments were made for the soundbox, tuning box, and bamboo arms.

The Sukhtara is a modern interpretation of the Ektara.

The Ektara dates back to some time between 1700 B.C. and 7th-century C.E.

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David Bowie’s later albums have been remixed in 360 Reality Audio

The late David Bowie's music is already immersive on many levels, but that's now reflected in the mixes themselves. All of Bowie's post-2000 studio albums (Heathen, Reality, The Next Day and Blackstar) plus a live album (A Reality Tour) have been remixed in Sony's 360 Reality Audio for release on Amazon Music Unlimited, Deezer and Tidal on January 21st. You can also listen to four of the A Reality Tour songs today (January 6th) at 7PM Eastern through Sony Square and YouTube, and through the Artist Connection mobile app afterward.

Importantly, longtime Bowie producer Tony Visconti was responsible for the mixes. This is as close as you'll get to a Bowie-approved mix in 2022, in other words, and it's a fitting tribute for the rock legend's imminent 75th birthday. You can use any headphones to listen in 360 Reality Audio, although Sony would clearly prefer you use its products.

This won't satisfy fans who want 360-degree mixes of full classic albums like Hunky Dory or Low (really, the album with "Sound and Vision" didn't get a rework?). You likewise won't be thrilled if you prefer services like Apple Music or Spotify. Only a handful of Bowie songs have received the spatial audio treatment to date, though — this is still a treat for enthusiasts eager for some audio bliss.

This vertical record player deserves attention for its eye candy looks + practical functionality

A vinyl record player that looks and feels way advanced than your modern music player thanks to its vertical orientation, the cool blue color theme, and overall sleek aesthetics. Playing music never looked this good, before I laid my eyes on this!

In normal circumstances, a record player is perceived to play the records lying flat – as the music churns out melodiously. In the design world, there is nothing that cannot challenge the existing perception of design elements, same goes with the good old vinyl players. The wall-mounted TT-90 System and o-ton turntable are prime examples of that out-of-the-box thinking are what we always tend to appreciate.

Industrial design student, Daniel Visintainer’s Asenso Vertical Record Player is yet another eye candy record player you’d want to sport in your living room or geeky den filled with Star Wars merchandise and high-end gaming accessories. Well, if that association wasn’t relevant enough, do pardon me, I get carried away at times! Alright coming back to the record player here, the designer has infused a subtle touch of modern to the good old vinyl player that we generally relate to our grandfather’s music fantasies. Sure, record players have lots of lovers, and for good measure too – the audio produced is high quality without any loss in frequencies, just as intended by the producer. Compare that to the modern digital formats and you’ll appreciate the difference.

The vertical approach adapted by the designer for Asenso is practical and commercially viable for the audiophile market. The big chunky buttons right where the record player slots in, lends the audio equipment a very modern technological bent. There is the big power On/Off button, the Play/Pause button and the Needle Release button – all these inclusions bring a sense of coolness to the design. Mids, bass and treble knobs are positioned on one side – just like any contemporary music player. Even better, the cord on the bottom section is movable for one reason – the vertical record player can be used horizontally too. Just like the PS5 or Xbox Series X gaming consoles!

Designer: Daniel Visintainer

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The Santasizer: 11 Synchronized Synthesized Dancing Santas

Crafted by musical mad scientist Sam Battle of Youtube channel Look Mum No Computer, the Santasizer isn’t an antibacterial hand gel to help keep the coronavirus at bay, but eleven dancing Santa toys from the 90’s connected to a synthesizer that reacts to the input being played through them. Fingers crossed, my company booked them for this year’s holiday party!

In the video, Sam and the Santas perform a funky rendition of the Christmas classic ‘God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen,’ complete with all the Santas’ sunglasses moving up and down as they bob to the beat. I only wish I could dance that well, then maybe people wouldn’t point and laugh so much when I hit the dance floor, usually with my head or face.

Now Sam just needs to install lasers in all of Santa’s eyes, so whenever they lift their sunglasses, they produce a laser light show, and he’s got himself a Christmas concert I would pay to go see! Not that I’m not excited to go see my nieces and nephews sing a bunch of carols off-key, there’s just always a very noticeable lack of laser beams.

[via Laughing Squid]

Innovative Turntable Designs that vinyl collectors need to get their hands on!

There’s something about vinyl that never really goes out of style, and everyone LOVES a quintessential vinyl turntable. They are classic collectibles that have reached iconic status. Any vinyl record owner or audiophile loves to showcase their beloved turntable. After all, they seem to wash everyone over with a wave of nostalgia, and simply take them to another time. One glance at a turntable, and you’re taken on a trip down memory lane, and a very retro one that is. In an ode to these evergreen devices, we’ve curated a collection of stunning turntables that every vinyl collector would love to get their hands on! From a turntable that transforms the sound waves into actual waves modeled onto the surface to a modern turntable that eliminates the fear of analog devices – these unique turntables are a must-have for all vinyl lovers!

1. The Ripple Turntable

A clever play on how sound emanates from a source like ripples from a single point, the Ripple Turntable turns audio waves into literal waves, with its surface treatment. The pristine white turntable comes with a rippled surface, with waves emanating from the spindle at the center of the platter, as well as from the origin of the swing-arm, and intersecting in the middle to create that perfect bit of visual drama. The entire turntable is white, with the swing-arm adding a gold accent to it, and the vinyl disc itself bringing a bit of black to the mix. Although conceptual, the turntable’s visual experiment is interesting, to say the least.

2. Brian Eno’s Turntable

Today, Brian Eno looks back on his storied artistry in close collaboration with London’s Paul Stolper Gallery to create 50 experimental turntables that embrace psychedelia through color-changing LEDs reminiscent of Eno’s ambient sonic musings. In addition to music, Eno is known for his visual artwork. Utilizing the intersection of light and music to immerse audiences in meditative and hyperrealistic dazes, Eno has been inspired by the works of James Turrell, and Piet Mondrian, as well as suprematism, and early-20th-century Russian avant-garde art movements.

3. RMV

Meet RMV – a turntable designed to blend the retro and modern vibe, hence the initials! By combining the past turntable and modern technology, RMV brings the past and the present together in a naturally harmonious manner. This design allows people to feel both analog and digital sensibilities unique to the turntable. It lets you enjoy listening to music using mobile phones, headsets, and speakers via Bluetooth. RMV is not heavier than traditional turntable in form and each CMF detail has been carefully picked to make sure it suits pretty much every interior setup. Its aesthetic pursues spatiality and morphological sophistication with minimal design.

4. Lucydreams’ Model of House Of Marley’s Stir It Up Turntable

Lucydreams created this highly detailed and precise 3D model of House Of Marley’s Stir It Up Turntable, and it is as modern as it can get. The original record player was created from bamboo! Lucydreams have retained the initial eco-friendly design, but they have visualized it in different colors and materials. These new and improved turntables cater to diverse tastes and preferences, from a sleek all-black turntable to a bright magenta one. However, the remaining components of the turntable are still pretty eco-friendly! Recycled plastic, recyclable aluminum, House Of Marley’s special REGRIND™ silicone, and REWIND™ fabric were used to build the product. Besides being sustainable and insanely good-looking, the turntable is high on functionality and quality as well! An exquisite belt drive, switchable speed options, and built-in preamp make it an innovative and easy-to-use turntable.

5. Supersonic

Supersonic is a fully exposed record player with a flat width and rounded side edges that give it a pronounced modern look. Supersonic also comes with an integrated rubber platter to spin the record and keep it spinning even as DJs manipulate the records on top of slipmats. Coated in stainless steel, the record player’s control panel features all that one would expect with a traditional turntable, including an anti-skating dial, speed switch, and power knob. With a stainless steel coating, Romantsov’s Supersonic turntable is corrosion-resistant, maintaining a slick finish even after continued use. Mostly every detail of Supersonic’s frame and accessories is constructed from stainless steel, including the stylus, cartridge, and fuller body, making it not only industrial in style but in strength and durability too.

6. Flip O Flip

Designer Juwon Kim wanted to create a turntable that abolishes the fear of analog within us! A turntable that is not only modern but approachable! And honestly, I would feel comfortable operating Flip O Flip. It aims to provide the same comfort and familiarity you feel while listening to digital media. Oh, and did I mention, this is a turntable that literally turns! Yes, you heard that right, named Flip O Flip, Kim’s quirky turntable actually turns! Instead of a typical platter, Kim’s turntable features an almost pin-shaped axis to slide the vinyl record into. This intriguing axis actually turns! It rotates the record and switches from its A side to B side. There is an ‘auto flip button’ that lets you switch the sides whenever you feel like it! A controller helps you control the speed of rotation and a dial lets you place or remove the tonearm from the record.

7. The TTMAC77

Cameron Bresn, an LA-based vehicle designer, has brought his unique rendering into the mix, TTMAC77, which incorporates linear tracking for a fresh take on the classic turntable. TTMAC77’s sleek half-cover could be constructed from ash wood with stainless steel accents, offering a delicate mix of casual adaptability and a touch of luxe elegance. The rotational, hinge rod allows the turntable’s cover to open and close, allowing for records to be swapped in and out. The turntable’s platter aligns neatly with a typical 12-inch record and without a dust cover, the wooden cover only hides half of the record so the record can always be seen spinning. With minimal frills and whistles underneath, the TTMAC77 appears considerably sophisticated, yet simple.

8. The LEVI

Jihyo Seo from Seoul Korea have taken the classic turntable design and given it a modern twist that’s made for a geek music lovers den. The duo likes to call it the LEVI, a levitating turntable that wears the Harman Kardon branding. The unique concept design exemplifies the levitating nature of the platter actuated by the electromagnetic drive and coils – giving this turntable an air of super coolness. This enhances the experience of listening to vinyl records, giving audiophiles a new unprecedented high. It’s so satisfying to watch the record being played on a levitating platter, just like magic!

9. The Old Future Turntable and Speaker

In the year 2021, few turntables have captured the essence of that time the way that the Old Future Turntable and Speaker has. First, let’s look at the shape. The silhouette of the player itself pays homage to 70’s architecture in Seoul. Slanted roofs were common during that era, and when you place the turntable and speaker side-by-side, they look like part of a 70’s city skyline. Some vinyl-lovers may not like this product initially because a flat, horizontal turntable would be preferred for sound quality. For those who care about audio quality over aesthetics, the turntable’s legs are adjustable, so you can make the table more even.

10. The Vinyl Clock

When turntables aren’t in use, they have a tendency to just take up space. They have no purpose other than to play music, so by turning it into a dual-functioning house product, the machine operates on a round-the-clock basis, pun intended. The final product is a stand-up record player whose cartridge doubles as a secondhand for its other purpose of telling and keeping track of time. By incorporating a removable axial cap, the design’s clock can be deconstructed in order to transform into a turntable. Once you select the record you’d like to play, it’s easy to reconstruct the clock back to its practical display. Manually-automated control dials for both volume and time are positioned just above the Vinyl Clock’s speaker for easy, fine-tuning. Through a simple transference of duties, the product’s epitomic function is to play your favorite records, using the clock’s second hand as a cartridge, while also providing you with the time of day – no longer will your turntable not be in use.

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Sony Walkman music player docks your smartphone like a cassette player, reviving nostalgic memories

This cool Sony Walkman is a modern audio player that doubles as a digital detox gadget for audiophiles who keep staring at their screen.

Who can forget the nostalgia of rewinding the same song over and over again on the good old Walkman cassette player? That’s one thing every millennial as a kid would relate to. Fast-forward to the present day, and we have the smartphone tending to all our music listening needs (unless you’re a hardcore audiophile) – virtually having all the music out there in the world just a finger swipe away. Such is the drastic shift in technology ever since the popularity of cassettes and cassette players in the late 1980s.

The analog side of gadgets has almost faded away in modern times and the digital age has overshadowed the charm of most classic stuff. But analog is not a fad – rather an ever-blossoming culture – and that’s a fact proven all these centuries when applied to any kind of domain. The Walkman SSS (Smart Sound System) by Ja Heon Lee proves it alright, mashing up the modern digital with the old classic to satiate the lust for music in a niche form factor. The Sony Walkman opens up like any analog cassette player and docks the smartphone with the screen facing outwards. The information screen of the compatible music player app displays the music information through the animation which resembles the look of a cassette tape.

On top of the music player, there is the detachable multi-controller which acts like an interface to control the music, take important calls or view lyrics on the fly. All this while your smartphone sits snug inside the Walkman. This is like a digital detox for all the screen time with a bit of added fun seeing the music being played out of the pseudo cassette player. It will surely transition you to good places in your subconscious memory, reviving old times when less was more!

Designer: Ja Heon Lee

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Brian Eno’s limited edition turntable gives listeners a psychedelic experience through color-changing LEDs!

The new limited-edition turntable from acclaimed record producer Brian Eno’s collaboration with London’s Paul Stolper Gallery offers an experimental, psychedelic sonic experience through color-changing LEDs.

Brian Eno, a pioneer in the realm of ambient music and the 1970s art-rock scene, speaks the language of music. Following his illustrious career with and departure from English synth-rock band Roxy Music, Eno got to work on his own music: a sonic world of ambient, avant-pop self-produced records. Gaining the admiration and respect of critics and listeners alike, Eno soon solidified his work as the template to serve new wave groups and musicians for years to come.

Today, Eno looks back on his storied artistry in close collaboration with London’s Paul Stolper Gallery to create 50 experimental turntables that embrace psychedelia through color-changing LEDs reminiscent of Eno’s ambient sonic musings. In addition to music, Eno is known for his visual artwork.

Utilizing the intersection of light and music to immerse audiences in meditative and hyperrealistic dazes, Eno has been inspired by the works of James Turrell, and Piet Mondrian, as well as suprematism, and early-20th-century Russian avant-garde art movements.

The new turntable from Brian Eno and the Paul Stolper Gallery embraces a cross-section of Eno’s varied craft and interests. Eno’s turntable emanates different-colored fluorescent LEDs from its base and platter, changing colors as the music plays.

Describing his experience using the turntable for the first time, Eno notes, “The light from it was tangible as if caught in a cloud of vapor. We sat watching for ages, transfixed by this totally new experience of light as a physical presence.”

Designer: Brian Eno & Paul Stolper Gallery

The turntable is wrapped in a translucent white shell that allows the color-changing LEDs to emanate warmly.

Each one of the 50 available turntables comes signed by Brian Eno and is given a batch number.

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Lady Gaga brings ten of her hits to ‘Beat Saber’

No, Meta and Beat Games still aren't done adding big-name musicians to Beat Saber. They're releasing a 10-song Lady Gaga Music Pack that, as you'd imagine, brings some of the pop superstar's best-known songs to the VR rhythm game on Quest and Rift headsets. There aren't any surprise picks here — the collection ranges from early hits like "Poker Face" to the Ariana Grande collaboration "Rain on Me." Still, you might appreciate slicing to Gaga's beats with a Chromatica-inspired backdrop.

The pack should be available tonight (December 9th) at $13 for the whole bundle, or $2 per song. Completists could undoubtedly poke holes in the selection (you won't get singles like "Applause"), but it's hard to object loudly when Gaga's dance pop should lend itself well to Beat Saber's gameplay.