If you asked Teenage Engineering’s gaming and musical instrument fans what the company’s next build-up would be like, they probably assumed it would be new. pocket playerAnd the another speaker Or maybe an update to OP-Z. It is actually the company’s first device to wholeheartedly adopt analog audio: a portable disc cutter.
Analog audio formats that were once thought to be extinct are enjoying an amazing renaissance. Cassette tapes are making a comeback and vinyl records are once again a booming business, even though most of us carry a device in our pocket that has access to literally millions of songs. Is analog audio better than digital audio? This may be a debate that has never been resolved, but records have a distinct sound that many prefer to the rigorous perfection of a digital archive, and now Teenage Engineering wants everyone to be able to create their own.
Fans of vinyl and turntables may find the new PO-80 familiar. It’s a collaboration between Teenage Engineering, designer Yuri Suzuki, and Japanese educational toy manufacturer Gakken, although the latter two They worked together before. A few years ago, Gakken and Suzuki created EZ Record Makerwhich – which We covered it when it debuted in 2020And while we haven’t tested the new PO-80 yet, judging by the photos alone, it looks nearly identical. To EZ Record Maker, plus some impressive Record Factory color and branding updates.
This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, because getting EZ Record Maker out of Japan wasn’t easy unless you were willing to put up with some exorbitant import duties. The PO-80 includes a tone arm that can play five- or seven-inch vinyl recordings (with adapter) and a replaceable stylus-cut arm that can record three minutes of glorious mono sound (at 45 rpm) or four minutes of low-quality sound (at 33 rpm) revolutions per minute) on a five-inch vinyl record.
For $149, the USB-powered PO-80 includes a built-in speaker, an extra clipping stylus, six blank 5-inch vinyl records, and a 3.5mm audio jack for connecting an audio source such as a synthesizer. Teenage Engineering also sells a set of accessories including a carrying case for $59, replacement pens for $15 each, and a pack of 10 blank tablets for $20.
For those who expect “optimal sound quality for their recordings” Teenage Engineering is too Create an online mastering tool which “applies the desired EQ curve to your music and makes it easy to achieve good lo-fi sound quality on custom 5-inch vinyl. Don’t expect to compare miracles or sound with store-bought pre-recorded vinyl, but when you spend two dollars on three minutes of sound Analog, it is better to do your best to make it shine.
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