Thanks to the growth of Urban Outfitters and independent local free-trade coffee shops, vinyl records are back on the rise. But this is still the 21st century: Why settle for a pedestrian, boring, flat record player, when your vinyl could be proudly spinning vertically?
This is the founding principle behind 'Floating Record', a Kickstarter campaign for a record player with a vertical platter. It is very much like every other entry-level turntable in the world -- it even costs $US350, a reasonable entry-level price -- only with the unique ability to make all your facial-haired hipster friends say whoa at exactly the same time.
At an educated guess, it's probably not going to sound amazing -- $US350 isn't a whole lot for a turntable, especially one that includes built-in speakers (and presumably some magical engineering that makes the whole vertical record thing work). But at the very least, the cartridge -- the important bit at the end of the arm that makes the most difference to sound quality -- is a well-reputed model from Audio Technica. Gramovox, the company behind it, has managed to actually sell audio equipment before, which helps allay some of the usual Kickstarter vapourware concerns. And there's no danger of the project not meeting its goal -- it's already raised $US136,000, way past the original $US50,000 goal.