LIVING IN THE PAST
A look at Steve Jobs’ audio system in 1982
Photographer Diana Walker’s candid of Steve Jobs and his audio system in 1982 “embodied everything he held dear in high-end industrial design: clean lines, quality materials and workmanship, outstanding performance–price be damned,” according to Wired’s Rene Chun, who pieced together his long-lost audio system.
Surprised he’s the first to do it? So are we. It’s the stuff bulletin boards are made of, although no one’s advanced the discussion past the point of speculation, until now.
Only two of the manufacturers in his system are still in business and ironically, one of them is Michell Engineering, maker of his turntable. The Michell of today’s GyroDec SE begins at $2495 and it’s BYOT, for bring your own tonearm.
There are two things to know about the GyroDec: 1) Stanley Kubrick selected an early iteration of it for A Clockwork Orange because he thought it looked like the future in 1971. (It still does.) 2) John Michell, the guy who designed this elegant piece of machinery, was a sci-fi visionary. He built the scale model Discovery spaceship for 2001: A Space Odyssey and C-3PO’s robotic eyes.
“For the curious, if you were to put together this same stereo rig today by picking up the components on the used market, it would cost about $8,200,” said Chun. Don’t expect to find them in prime condition, though. At their age, they’d also need to be refurbished by a technician.
Photo Credit: Diana Walker/SJ/Contour by Getty Images. “Steve Jobs sits at his home in Woodside, CA on December 15, 1982.”