Teenage Engineering Brings Back the Click Wheel

Teenage Engineering Brings Back the Click Wheel

The production days of Teenage Engineering $50 Electronic Musical Toys seem far behind, but it’s hard to lament the company’s shift in focus when creating hardware like its new TP-7 field recorder, which features a spinning wheel that can be used to start, stop and cycle through recordings by simply touching it.

For those who remember the iPhone Daysthe TE TP-7 field recorder recalls the original iPod model, which featured an interface centered around a wheel on the face that could be turned with a finger to navigate menus, skip tracks or adjust playback volume.

The click wheel was eventually replaced with a circular touchpad that didn’t move, but Teenage Engineering apparently took inspiration from Apple’s original iP0d design by giving the TP-7 its own rotating disc on the front. which simulates the tape reels used on audio devices. decades ago. Unlike the iPod, however, the TP-7’s disc is motorized and spins as an obvious indicator that the device is recording sound. But it also features sensors, and like a piece of vinyl on a record player, the disc can be turned manually to control playback of recordings. You can even pause recordings by temporarily stopping the disc spinning, which seems like an intuitive way to use the device. In other words, it’s not just there for the sake of the eyes.

A close up of the toggle switch on the side of the Teenage Engineering TP-7 Field Recorder used to browse through recordings.

But the TP-7’s disk isn’t the only way to use the device. It has physical record, play and stop buttons, buttons for volume control and a dedicated button on the side for quickly record voice memos. Opposite is a single toggle switch that can be used as another means of adjusting the playback speed of a recording or rewinding it. And yes, the disc will spin faster in both directions as long as the toggle is pressed.

The Teenage Engineering TP-7 field recorder next to an iPhone and an app with a transcribed recording on the screen.

Intuitive playback controls will make it easier for anyone who needs to transcribe a recording, but Teenage Engineering has an even better solution for that. When connected to an iPhone with a USB cable or wirelessly via Bluetooth, a The iOS app will automatically turn voice recordings into editable text, and the app can even be used as a remote control for the TP-7 itself. Sorry, Android users…the recorder only supports iOS, macOS and Windows.

Three bi-directional stereo jacks can be used to connect input or output accessories, including microphones, headphones, speakers, or to connect the TP-7 to other Teenage Engineering equipment, such as sound TX-6 Compact Blender at $1,200. It comes with 128GB of storage and a rechargeable battery that lasts around seven hours of recording or playback. Teenage Engineering has yet to set a specific release date, just a promise of availability this summerwith a price tag of $1,499.


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