Audio-Technica has announced the welcome return of one of the company’s most striking device’s, after unveiling a rejigged version of the ’80s-tastic Sound Burger portable record player.
First released in 1983 at the height of the portable audio boom, the AT770 Sound Burger (also known as the Mister Disc in the US) was a take-anywhere record player which came with a set of fold-away headphones and could run off three 2 batteries.
It featured a DC motor with a belt drive and could play 33 1/3 and 45 RPM records.
Released to mark the Japanese company’s 60th anniversary, this new 2022 version maintains the same unique design, but brings with it a few 21st century updates.
There’s now Bluetooth connectivity and a more convenient built-in lithium-ion battery with USB-C charging for 12 hours of continuous playback. There’s no extendable cord hanger for your headphones this time out, nor does the resurrected Sound Burger include a set of foldaway headphones.
You can however rig it up to a sound system via RCA cable, while the new model comes with Audio-Technica’s ATN3600L stylus pre-installed.
Alongside the Sound Burger, Audio-Technica has also revealed a new high-end, manual belt-drive turntable with a unique see-through housing.
Limited to just 3,000 units worldwide, the AT-LP2022 features a mounted black AT-VM95E cartridge alongside a clear AT-VMN95SH Shibata stylus, while the 30mm thick acrylic chassis rests on isolation feet that are height-adjustable, reducing unwanted resonances. To complete the look. there’s a matching see-through platter that further helps to reveal the deck’s innards.
The 2022 Sound Burger and the AT-LP2022 are both available to buy now, with the former priced at $199/£200/€229 and the latter priced at US $1200/ £999/€1199.
Opinion: Audio-Technica's anniversary decks look set to have vintage audio fans partying
While the original Sound Burger perhaps didn’t quite achieve its goal of being the Sony Walkman for vinyl records, it remains an A/V design classic that’s coveted by collectors.
This new model will have retro gear heads jumping for joy, while its surprisingly reasonable price tag is likely to have antique audiophile dealers shaking their fists at the skies, what with the original ’80s model regularly changing hands for as much as £500 on eBay these days.
The more conventional, but no less eye-catching AT-VMN95SH will also be a big hit with nostalgic types thanks to its classic design, while that Shibata stylus should ensure it’s a deck to be reckoned with.
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Kevin Lynch is a London-born, Dublin-based writer and journalist. The author of Steve Jobs: A Biographic Portrait, Kevin is a regular feature writer for a number of tech sites and the former Technology Editor for the Daily Mirror. He has also served as editor of GuinnessWorldRecords.com and has been a member of the judging panel for the BAFTA British Academy Video Game Awards. Alongside reviewing the latest AV gear, smartphones and computers, Kevin also specialises in music tech and can often be found putting the latest DAWs, MIDI controllers and guitar modellers through their paces. Born within the sound of Bow Bells, Kevin is also a lifelong West Ham fan for his troubles.