Minimalist Design in the Lampion Vacuum Amp For Your iPad.

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Danish audio maker Låmpion has released a new tube amplifier designed by Stefan Radev. The minimalist tube amplifier is one stylish piece of hardware with a clean aesthetic blending aluminum, wood, and glass to create a clean, simple, functional design. The amp is compatible with both Apple and Android devices and can be used with  stand alone audio equipment as well.

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There is something timeless about the look of this object, and it feels like the design team really took into account how the amp will look when paired with an iPhone or an iPad. The rounded edges and materials mirror what is going on with the Apple products so well, and the look of the build quality screams premium audio. The design team  applied a well balanced choice of proportions, materials, and accents to create the clean look of this amplifier without introducing to much technological clutter.

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Beyond the look, this amp  is solid on specs as well featuring two twenty watt custom tube driven amps, with a frequency response of 5Hz to 50Khz, multiple inputs ranging from RCA output, micro USB input, WiFi audio, an Apple Lighting dock connector, 1/4 inch headphone jack as well as mini jacks.

No word on pricing and availability, but I suspect this will be Europe only and carry a hefty price tag when it’s all said and done.

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“Shape your Time”, Cartier’s Epic Online Commercial.

Cartier has dropped an online short celebrating 167 years of fine watching making. The spot is heavy on 3D animation, CG, and effects laden content that blends a sort of steampunk and sci-fi look together to create a truly epic video. I can’t begin to imagine what the budget and production schedule was for this. The sound design is fantastic, the over all production value of the animation is truly high budget movie worthy, and while I don’t really get the narrative it doesn’t really matter. The spot kept me looking, and left the Cartier brand lingering in my brain which is one of the things advertising is supposed to do.

You Owe Mercedes-Benz A Lot For That Beer You Are Drinking.

Update: Thanks Steve Savalle for commenting and setting the record straight on the story developers Fraser Davidson, and Tiny Toy Car. It’s great work from all of you.

 has uploaded a fun little spot for Tiny Toy Car outlining the history of the van, and how it all started as a rivallery between Daimler and Benz. Savalle came up with the basic story telling idea that was then fleshed out by Fraser Davidson, Steve Savalle, Mike Basilico, and Chris Naglik at Cub Studio, and Pluto. The clip takes a light hearted, fun approach to the history of the subject starting in the late 1800’s and rolling forward to today. I love how they tie it all to beer hauling horses, and a better solution to getting that beer across town. The spot takes a  stylistic approach to the animation  with a solid nod to a flatter design aesthetic yet still maintaining atmospheric depth and fresh look that really works. Since October is just a day away, and October means October Fest, next time you lift a beer give a toast to Daimler Benz.

Design: Fraser Davidson, Steve Savalle, Mike Basilico, and Chris Naglik
Animation: Steve Savalle, Mike Basilico, Fraser Davidson
Audio: Pluto

“The Missing Scarf”

This morning I found a link to something in my inbox that put a smile on my face. A new animated short by  titled “The Missing Scarf”, winner of more film festival awards than you can shake a stick at and with good reason. Written, animated, and directed by Duffy, the animated piece follows the search for a missing scarf by our hero Albert the squirrel. It’s a great blend of 2D and 3D animation that features George Takei doing the narration is a dark comedy wrapped in the premise of a children’s story. The look of this is so nice. Mostly flat with only the squirrel rendered as a low polly count 3D object. The musical score really works to enhance the over all feel of the piece, and Takei’s narration is spectacular. This is worth the 6 minutes it takes to watch, and hopefully will put a smile on your face this Monday morning as well.

“The first was an emotional display of the event; while “The Missing Scarf” dealt with the aftermath: Primarily the seeming amplification of everyday fears – fear of the unknown, failure, rejection and finally death. The film’s script mirrors my internal debate on the subject – comparing the pros and cons of each, allowing the audience to draw their own conclusions.”

Narrator: George Takei
Writer / Animator / Director: Eoin Duffy
Producer: Jamie Hogan
Script Editor: Richard Duffy
Music Company: Echolab
Composer: Tobias Norberg, Gavin Little (Echolab)
Sound Designers: Gavin Little, Joe McHugh (Echolab)
Post Production: Windmill Lane
Legal: Gordon Judge
Accounting: Stephen Proctor
Funders Representatives –
Emma Scott: Production Executive for the Irish Film Board
Pauline McNamara: Executive Producer – RTE
Fionnuala Sweeney: Film Specialist – Arts Council
Jill McGregor: Schemes & Applications Co-ordinator for the Irish Film Board

Arbor Skateboards Presents, “Burn It Down” and James Kelly Hauling Ass Down the Mountain.

It’s been a while since I posted anything that involved skateboarding, and since it’s Friday afternoon in the early days of autumn I thought the video would be a good one to post. While the skating in the video is impressive, thats not what caught my eye. What got me all wound up was the quality of the production, the editing, the choice of soundtrack, the color treatment, and the overall visual of the video Arbor Collective Skateboards produced to introduce the James Kelly pro model.

At about the one minute twenty mark, when thy roll out of slow motion and into regular timed footage you get a sense of just how fast this guy is going. Let me just say, he’s hauling ass.

“Aspirational”, Matthew Frost on Selfie Culture.

Kirsten Dunst is the star of a new online film by Iconoclast’s Matthew Frost for fashion magazine Vs. In the film Frost takes direct aim at the narcissistic selfie culture that has exploded with social media and the smartphone generation. In the film Dunst is waiting outside of her home for a ride when a car with two young women stops and ask if she is who they think she is. Without asking her permission, they hop out and start shooting selfies of themselves with Dunst while muttering “cool” in the background repeatedly. In spite of it all Dunst remains friendly and even asks if they want to talk or ask her anything, but their primary interested is being tagged by Dunst on social media to gain random followers and likes. Through out the entire clip Dunst’s expressions are spot on, and the script nails the experience so well. At the end listen to the movies they name and see if you can spot the ones that Dunst was not in.

Gang Films and Digital District Produce an Epic Spot for Volvic.

So you make mineral water and you want to advertise in a way that sets you apart from the crowd. What are you going to do? The competition is stiff and you are selling water. What you do is, hire  and Gang Films to produce a spot that feels like a movie trailer for an epic Sci-Fi movie. I have no idea what the budget or production schedule was on this, but I can tell you it wasn’t cheap, and it took some serious time and effort. If this doesn’t sell some Volvic mineral water, I don’t know what will.