Retro-cool turntable rocks built-in speakers and Bluetooth streaming
Though sales of vinyl records have been steadily rising in recent years, the vast majority of the music we listen to is served up via streaming services. Hong Kong-based design studio CoolGeek embraces both formats with a Bluetooth-capable turntable that also includes its own sound system.
A kind of modern take on the old radiogram, though with Bluetooth streaming instead of a traditional radio, the CS-01 all-in-one music system is topped by a retro-modern belt-drive turntable with a carbon fiber tonearm ending in an Audio Technica Moving Magnet cartridge.
Spin speeds of 33 and 45 rpm are selected by a push button around back, and the setup offers semi-automatic operation, meaning that the platter will start spinning when the tonearm is lifted but the stylus is lowered into the grooves manually. One of a pair of brass-colored knobs up top is used to power on the CS-01 and select turntable or Bluetooth modes while the other controls the output volume.
Below that is a four-speaker sound system for listening to vinyl records without having to cable the system up to hi-fi components like an amplifier, phono pre-amp or external speakers – though the unit does sport RCA line outputs for user flexibility. This comprises two 15-W speakers for the mids and low end (with the latter enhanced by inverted bass porting) and two 10-W tweeters, driven by two 30-W amplifiers for the promise of "melodious treble, warm midrange, and surging bass."
A four-spring suspension setup is reported to help isolate the turntable from vibrations caused by the speaker system.
And the final ingredient in the CoolGeek recipe is Bluetooth 5.0, which allows listeners to stream music through the built-in sound system from a mobile device.
As with CoolGeek's Soundesk Bluetooth speaker/coffee table hybrid from 2019, the CS-01 music system is the subject of a Kickstarter funding campaign. Pledges start at US$329 and if all goes to plan, shipping is estimated to start in May.