In the top floor suite of hotel ‘sequence | Miyashita Park’ in Shibuya, Tokyo, you will find a marvelous piece of equipment quietly sitting on the ledge overlooking the scenic metropolis it is named after. Called #001 TOKYO, it is a vacuum tube amplifier, the first one by Puddle Sound – a brand created by Japanese architectural studio, Puddle. However, what they are offering is not just a product but a completely new experience of the Tokyo soundscape to immerse yourself in.
Puddle Sound’s vision is to make people more conscious of how they associate sound from a place and time as a specific memory in their lives. And they do this by bringing together three things: a modern Tokyo-style guest room design, original sound recorded around Shibuya, and the integrity of the tube amplifier as art. Thus was born #001 TOKYO. It is a custom-made amplifier, one of only 15 limited-edition models, which comes with an architectural acoustic design for your space to bring sound, art, and life together.
Designer Masaki Kato, the founder of Puddle, wanted to use various primitive materials to take the audience on a journey of a novel sensory experience. Securely placed within a glass housing are the vacuum tubes alongside a circular heatsink made up of 400 copper cooling pins. Surrounding them is natural clay, coated over the steel casing, and is given a rough texture to give an appearance of a desert landscape to this piece. On the lower part, which is recessed than the rest of the body, we see control elements and connectivity ports nicely laid out with ambient light shining upon them, making this design an embodiment of Japanese minimalism in perfect harmony.
Puddle Sound has collaborated with various artisans who bring their amazing craftsmanship from their respective fields to create this wonderful work of art. Now if only there was a portable version, allowing you to carry a small piece of Tokyo wherever you go.
Designer: Masaki Kato for Puddle Sound