RokBlok Lets You Play Vinyl Records Anywhere
Tom Spendlove posted on December 23, 2016 |
Kickstarter campaign is funding a project that lets you play records without the record player.

Logan Riley and his team at Pink Donut believe that vinyl records are amazing, and the world deserves more options for listening to vinyl. Pink Donut developed RokBlok, a wireless and portable record player designed to play records anywhere. A successful crowdfunding campaign is currently running at Kickstarter to fund the first production run of parts.

Rokblok rides on top of vinyl records and uses rubber wheels to glide along the surface, along with a needle and speakers to give input and output to the music. A lever on the side is flipped up to begin the music and placing your hand over the unit causes the lever to go down and the unit to stop.

The bamboo and MDF frame is 2 x 2 x 4 1/3 inches, and weights 3.2 ounces. The internal speaker runs between 20-20,000 Hertz, and the rechargeable battery needs two hours for charging to give four hours of music playback. Bluetooth 4.2 A2DP capability allows Rokblok to interface with any Bluetooth speaker within thirty feet of the unit.

Rokblok is an awesome example of a product redesign that takes the product requirements (needle input, circular motion, soundwave output) and completely reimagines what the end result can be. Simulation and analysis were required to specify the right material of rubber wheels and place the center of gravity correctly so that the unit and its motion would not damage a vinyl record. Riley is quick to note that this is a new spin on an older idea - the Tamco Soundwagon (also know as the Stokyo Record Runner) from the 1970s also played a record by riding on top of the vinyl surface. Rokblok is the first *wireless* version of this technology. He also notes that Rokblok probably won't replace the high end turntable setups on the market but is a great portable alternative to let people enjoy music anywhere. The campaign ends on January 24, 2017 and first units are expected to ship in September.

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