JVC Kenwood has released a set of bewildering wireless wooden speakers in Japan. Looking more like just a speaker frame, the pair vibrate to produce sounds, which unfortunately means their bass performance is non-existent.
It's form over function to the extreme, but JVC Kenwood is OK with that. Because the speakers were actually only designed to play one thing: the noise of a forest. The larger 12-inch model is priced at $US3400, while the smaller 5-inch model goes for $US700.
The company will be offering an accompanying monthly subscription service in Japan that streams sounds captured by two forest-based microphones. One is set up on Honshu, in the Japanese Alps near Takayama. The other is near Morotsuka, on the mountainous southernmost island of Kyushu, known for its volcanoes and hot springs.
This like a ridiculously expensive version of one of those white noise machines — minus the "whale song" and "ocean waves" options. Would you pay a premium to know you're listening live to an honest-to-God forest? [The Asahi Shimbun via MoCo Loco]