Maxell’s famous “Blown Away” Le Corbusier LC2 ad implicitly promised an era when music could blow you away, leaving only a shrieking skeleton clinging to a chain-link fence, like the nuclear attack in Terminator 2.
That future never arrived, though: consumer speakers were not up to the task. Worse, as audio devices got increasingly more svelte and compact, there wasn’t even the visual illusion of a system of bone-scouring aural output.
This JVC HXD77J ($269) is a gorgeous monstrosity. It’s your standard mini-system: radio, CD, USB port to listen to music directly from a PC or Mac. It curiously says it has the ability to “play” JPEG files. But where it really satisfies is in the early 90’s oomph of its design. Now this is the kind of boom box that could blast your eyeballs into the back of your cerebellum.