‘Nostalgia Designers’ NINM LAB are Bringing Back the Cassette Player

The company is reviving forgotten products from the '80s and has developed the world’s first Bluetooth 5.0 cassette player.

09.07.2019 | by Christy Romer
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Everybody likes a little taste of the past — particularly if the chosen slice of history can be combined with some of the most user-friendly and attractive parts of the present.

And in 2019, maybe because of the Stranger Things Netflix series, maybe because of cyclical fashion, or maybe because of the return of synth sounds and electric drum pads, nothing is inspiring more nostalgic glances backwards than ‘80s culture.

Hong Kong based design studio NINM Lab is midway through a new Kickstarter campaign for its most recent ‘80s product: a revamped, bluetooth-powered cassette player.

‘It’s OK’ comes in three different colours — Cloud, Sakura and Evening — and two modes, individual and open space, meaning the cassettes can either be listened to through headphones or speakers. The transparent design comes with the traditional play, stop, record, fast forward or rewind buttons, and there’s space for both a 3.5mm headphone jack and a mic — allowing people to record 60 minutes of messages in a “personalised format” through an accompanying blank cassette tape.

“Unlike the convenience of smartphone technology, a box of cassette tapes has time limitations. Because of this, only the most significant and meaningful dialogue is recorded,” NINM LAB writes on KickStarter

“As a physical object, this box can be held on hands and passed to people of value, which teaches us how to treasure”.

The product, made by designers in Hong Kong, is almost 400% funded on Kickstarter, proving that people are rather nostalgic for the almost forgotten device.

It follows last year’s production of a user-friendly disposable film camera, complete with “basic and fine colour negative Japanese pink tone films”, in order to “record your thoughts on a limited 36-sheet film”.

Tags: 80s, music

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