Thu 16 Dec
For my birthday a few weeks ago I received this Tivoli Model One table radio as a gift from my mother. It’s basically a very simple, very solidly built AM/FM tuner. Here’s what came in the box: the radio itself and a power cable. Oh, and a brief manual that I didn’t even bother reading.
Set-up took about a minute: attach the cable to the back of the unit and then plug it into a wall and it was working. The tuning dial feels so substantial in its turning motion — incredibly precise, incredibly well-manufactured — that it has the feel of luxury. Not the flashy, superficial notion that passes for most luxury these days, which is really more about price tags than build quality. Rather this radio exudes a truly ‘high end’ sensibility that suggests enough thought and care have been invested in its design and engineering that the whole unit could last several decades.
I know that radio designers and engineers have almost a century of best practices and technological refinement at their backs when they sit down to create a product like the Model One. And it’s perhaps unrealistic to expect that today’s constantly changing networked technology products could work like this, could be so simple and solid. But it still made me wish that all electronic products could offer an out-of-the-box experience as satisfying as this. (Get yours at Amazon through this link and I get a little kickback.)