by Julian Schmauch | 4,2 / 5,0 | Approximate reading time: 3 Minutes
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The cassette comeback keeps on growing. Even more prominent artists are starting to release their albums on tape, and it seems like there is a new cassette label every other week. So, it’s not just vinyl. And with We Are Rewind’s new take on the Walkman, the Portable BT Cassette Player, you even get Bluetooth functionality.

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Direct recording and Bluetooth – The Portable BT Cassette Player from We are Rewind

For those of you in the know who are wondering why we’re reporting on this now: Following loads of releases from NAMM 2024 and CES 2024, this modern take on the legendary Walkman is getting new attention. Tape is back for good.

Source: We are Rewind

After vinyl sales skyrocketed last Christmas to the biggest weekly sales since the eighties, retroists attention turned to cassette tapes as well. Many recent releases on tape often sold out rather quickly. Even the major record labels are turning their attention to the revival of the second analog medium. The hype is real. And We are Rewind’s Portable BT Cassette Player might be the one retro-modern take on the Walkman to look out for.

How much Walkman is too much Walkman?

Every portable tape cassette player has to ultimately face being compared to the Walkman – Sony’s giant success in the eighties set a benchmark in terms of durability, audio quality, and design that is tough to surpass. And with the recent release of the completely analog FiiO CP13, we saw a well-designed portable cassette player, that lacked any modern features whatsoever.

Tape in black
Tape in black · Source: We are Rewind

With the Portable BT Cassette Player, you get Bluetooth 5.1 for a wireless connection, the ability to record audio directly to tape through its 3.5mm input, and even a rechargeable battery. The compact cassette player comes with a lithium battery that can power the little box for up to twelve hours.

The blue edition of the  Portable BT Cassette Player
The blue edition of the Portable BT Cassette Player · Source: We are Rewind
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What we can’t tell from the pictures or the video is how it sounds. If it matches the noise-reduced Dolby C, the Hi-fi sound of yesteryear. That remains to be heard. There have been some concerns about the quality of the tape motor of many of these new portable cassette players, but if you’re a LoFi-kind-of guy or girl, this might be just the thing. We do wish the Portable BT Cassette Player had any kind of playback speed control or Bluetooth multipoint capability so you can listen to the latest mixtape with your friend.

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What does the Portable BT Cassette Player cost?

The Portable BT Cassette Player from We are Rewind costs 133 GBP / 150 Euros / 164 USD. You can order one in three different colors from their website: orange, blue, or grey.

The yellow one
The yellow one · Source: We are Rewind

And if you’ve got a cassette player already, and you need blanks, check out these blank tapes from Thomann*.

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Retro Meets Bluetooth: We Are Rewind Portable BT Cassette Player

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4 responses to “Retro Meets Bluetooth: We Are Rewind Portable BT Cassette Player”

    Ab. says:
    3

    These shiny new cassette player use really bad white label cassette mechanism and are REALLY bad (wow, flutter, distortion, the whole package).

    You can watch the techmoan video linked in the article for proofs

      Kyle says:
      2

      But isn’t that why we buy “vibe” and “retro” plugins: to add wow, flutter, distortion and the like 😛

      Max says:
      0

      I was wonder about that. Unless they’re making their own mechanism this is just another overpriced fashion statement. I’d gladly pay these prices for a smooth and reliable mechanism.

    JP says:
    0

    The hipster millennials who see these as a good thing will no doubt never have had the joy of having to try and extract a cassette that’s been chewed up without breaking the tape, failing, having to wind miles of tape back into the cassette with a biro, then make clean cuts and a repair with a small piece of Sellotape, with the resulting wobble and then jump in your favourite new-old album.

    Neither do I miss the sight of reams of tape on roadside verges across the country, where cassettes were chewed up in cars and drivers chucked them out of the window.

    Old technology becomes old technology for a reason.

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