Blasts from the past: Vintage meets modern technology in these hybrid products

Blasts from the past: Vintage meets modern technology in these hybrid products

A typewriter-inspired keyboard for the iPad, an electric bike with an old-school design – nostalgia beckons with these retro-styled devices.

For pre-millennials with a nostalgic bent, it’s terribly easy to romanticise the past. Yet, old is not always gold. While a classic car might impress with elegant vintage stylings and a back-to-basics driving experience, the technology of this bygone era comes with its fair share of spluttering engines. So, if you could enjoy the tactile experience of turning a knob on the stereo without compromising on hi-fi aural pleasures, the prospect of marrying digital hardware with an analogue aesthetic seems all the more appealing. Below, handsome products that ingeniously pair retro stylings with sleek, contemporary performance.


The Tivoli Audio Model One BT is a tribute to old radios, minus the crackling reception. The familiar knobs and dials are the antithesis to today’s sleek, shiny interfaces, while the handmade wooden body makes an acoustically sound case for the art of slow craft. The set streams music from radio stations and playlists via other Bluetooth-enabled devices, so users can blast the latest Ed Sheeran album along with their archived Supremes.



For the past 30 years, Jaguar E-Types have been restored by British engineering firm Eagle. The process starts with a customer consultation, followed by a complete disassembly of the donor car. The body shell is reconstructed, structurally reinforced, and treated with an anti-rust coat. Standard upgrades and optional extras are fitted. These include a more powerful engine, new wiring, switches and improved brakes, down to the mundane such as better windscreen wipers. The result: a car from 1961 that can keep up with 2017’s supercars.



Touchscreen keyboards may have replaced typewriters, but many old souls still enjoy tapping on keys that go clickety-clack. Enter the Qwerky writer: a mechanical typewriter-inspired keyboard that connects wirelessly with the user’s laptop or desktop. Its vintage-looking key caps are a throwback to the days of yore – perfect for those channelling their inner Hemingway.



Electric bikes are all the rage now. While most are uninspired contraptions of steel and exposed motors, Vintage Electric Bike’s Cruz model combines a California cruiser aesthetic with up to 57kmh of pedal power. Fitted with an artfully concealed 52-volt battery, the handsome steed boasts an alder wood frame inlay, handsome Brooks leather saddle, and powerful LED lighting – giving stylish cyclists a good reason to head out for a spin.



Amid the sea of smartphones flooding the market, Punkt’s MP 01 “dumb phone” is an elegant solution for those looking to sign out of a hyper-connected world without going cold turkey. The beauty of this phone lies in the fact that it fulfils only two functions – make phone calls and send texts. Trumping the allure of the phone’s simple, utilitarian design is a battery capable of powering the phone for days.



For gamers who can’t bear to part with their collection of Nintendo and Famicom game cartridges, the Analogue NT Mini is a welcome throwback to the past of eight-bit gaming – sans annoying load times. The new-and-improved hardware of the console channels razor-sharp pixels, resurrecting an entire era of Nintendo’s history with an outstanding level of clarity.

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