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#31678 - 01/22/04 02:25 PM Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
nowave Offline
old hand

Registered: 09/14/02
Posts: 97
Loc: USA
This is definitely a non-Axiom post... but I posted a question a while back regarding the Tivoli radios, designed by the late great Henry Kloss. In a word, my review is "unbelievable."

It's a pricey item, the Model 3 radio (which includes a clock w/ alarm). I have to say, though, I have not seen craftmanship like this in a new, modern item. The cabinet is real wood, heavily polished with a gorgeous grain to it. every knob feels "heavy" - there's resistance, but it's just there to make you choose correctly.

It is, though, just a small clock radio. Mono, at that. I have to say, for mono, it fills a room really well. The room it's playing in now is something like 30'x15'x18' - a pretty large room. It is currently playing with the companion speaker, to make it stereo - but honestly, I don't know if it's worth it. It does add a bit more volume and stereo spaciousness, but the little mono radio is so damn good, it's hard to accept any improvements.

Now - this isn't a true bedroom audio system - but if you don't have any audio at all in your bedroom, and would like an easy, simple clock radio - this item is the best. Sure, the low end is not there, but the mid-low is surprisingly full. The high end is definitely rolled off, but I think it makes it a pleasant and "calm" thing to listen to. My favorite bit is the alarm setting, which is set like an egg timer. I am so fed up with the complicated button-mashing of my current clock radio - this one just seems to make sense. I could work this drunk or half asleep with ease. How many modern-day products can you say that about?

I could fall asleep and awake to this thing every night and never think I'm missing out on the music. Well, I like to wake to talk radio - but this thing does that better than ANYTHING I've heard - including axioms!

It really is a remarkable item - worth it's high price. It's something you will have with you for dozens of years - and I wouldn't be surprised if they become collectors items someday, like the famous Kloss Model 8.

#31679 - 01/22/04 03:57 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
Raindance Offline

Registered: 11/30/03
Posts: 170
Loc: Minnesota
I agree- those Tivolis are pretty incredible. A couple comments/additions:

1. I think those radios have non-standard, cool technology to get such a good frequency response out of a single driver
2. The real beauty of those things is their tuners; I started to raise my eyebrows at
"Well, I like to wake to talk radio - but this thing does that better than ANYTHING I've heard - including axioms!"
But then I remembered the cell-phone-like tuner in the Tivoli, compared to the standard-to-poor tuners in almost all receivers. So, I'm going to interpret that as a comment on your receiver.

#31680 - 01/22/04 04:08 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
nowave Offline
old hand

Registered: 09/14/02
Posts: 97
Loc: USA
Actually, I have a separate, vintage (H/K) tuner that does a really good job at pulling almost any station.

I should probably clarify the "better than axiom" comment. The reason why I say I think it does "talk" even better than axioms is that the mono/proximity factor. It has a very warm sound, and the radio's small size mean that it's probably going to be closer to you in almost all cases than your regular set of speakers.

This makes a nice "intimate" feel to radio talk. I do listen to my axioms regularly for radio music, but I really do think I prefer the tivoli for talk. Maybe it's that I think the axioms present too "big" a sound for talk... the tivoli tricks me more into thinking that someone is actually taking to ME. I really do think that the driver in that speaker is voiced specifically for conversational speech - it's just too good.

I do dearly love my axioms, though. I miss them terribly. I'm painting the room in my new house where they will be, and as motivation, have decided not to hook them up until I'm done.

Maybe I should get back to painting!

#31681 - 01/22/04 04:18 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
Raindance Offline

Registered: 11/30/03
Posts: 170
Loc: Minnesota
Motivation indeed.

Thanks for the mini-review of the Tivoli!

#31682 - 01/22/04 09:01 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
spiffnme Offline

Registered: 04/01/03
Posts: 5219
Loc: Los Angeles
Thanks for the little review. It's always good to hear rave reviews of any product. Axiom or otherwise.

"A nation cannot prosper long, when it favors only the prosperous." -President Barack Obama

#31683 - 01/22/04 10:23 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
Blooz1 Offline

Registered: 10/13/03
Posts: 21
Loc: Ct.
I heartily agree about the sound of these little wonders for "talk" radio! I've got one of the portable PAL models, and I use it every Saturday morning for the talk shows on NPR, such as "Car Talk" and "Waddya Know?".

I really like the "warmth" of voices on the PAL. It sounds very good in an outdoor environment also, but, naturally, you can't be sitting 20' away and expect to hear it well when outside!

#31684 - 01/23/04 03:44 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
OGS20 Offline
old hand

Registered: 08/23/02
Posts: 65
Loc: TO
Question for those who have this item - how good (or bad) is the FM reception on this radio? My present Sony POS radio-clock cannot pickup my favourite station from about 200 miles away (I'm in Toronto, station broadcasts out of somewhere around Buffalo)

#31685 - 01/23/04 06:41 PM Re: Tivoli clock radio (non-axiom)
Raindance Offline

Registered: 11/30/03
Posts: 170
Loc: Minnesota
The same frequency-isolating technology used in cell phones is found in these radios- on a side of a mountain in South Dakota my parents get their favorite radio stations. They're crystal clear.

Their old radio only picked up static.

I'll stand by that the most amazing things about these radios are their tuners


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