Awesome 1980s

Retro Gamer Logo Magnets

Retro Gamer Logo Magnets
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UK shop ReadyPlayerTwo creates these nifty 3-dimensional logo signs inspired by classic video game and computer systems. Each one is 3D printed from PLA plastic to accurately replicate the original color scheme, and has neodymium magnets securely mounted inside.

Retro Tech: Sony Chordmachine

Retro Tech: Sony Chordmachine

Techmoan is always digging up examples of strange old-school tech, and this episode does not disappoint. What you’re looking at is a wonderful specimen of cassette futurism. Sony’s Chordmachine is a 1982 device that combines a boombox with a synthesizer that plays chords and rhythms and records sounds to tape.

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Playmobile Knight Rider K.I.T.T.

Playmobile Knight Rider K.I.T.T.

Fans of Knight Rider will immediately recognize this murdered-out 1982 Pontiac Firebird Trans Am as K.I.T.T. Playmobil’s version plays original voice clips and activates its scanner light when you touch its hood. The set includes poseable figures of Michael Knight, Bonnie Barstow, and Devon Miles. Drops May 2022.

Thundercats Redrawn in HD

Thundercats Redrawn in HD

Animator xtremee_ghost loves the 1980s cartoon Thundercats so much that they created a remastered version of the show’s intro sequence. The new version features crisp, clean lines and vibrant colors in high-definition, versus the grainy old VHS transfers we’re used to seeing. Here’s the original for comparison.

Amiga A500 Mini

Amiga A500 Mini

The Commodore Amiga was one of the more powerful PCs of the 1980s. Known for its graphical prowess, it offered some of the best games of its era. This mini version looks like the A500 but supports A1200 graphics. It comes with 25 games and the ability to load more. Comes with a 2-button mouse and a gamepad. Drops early 2022.

Retro ’80s TV Clock

Retro ’80s TV Clock

1980s technology had a certain futuristic vibe to it. Maker MarcioT shows off a sweet ’80s-inspired clock he made using an old CRT television and a digital clock he programmed onto an ESP32 microcontroller. The build instructions are available on Instructables with the source code for the Dali Clock on Github.

Astrophysics: Save Your Tears for Miku

Astrophysics: Save Your Tears for Miku

Synthwave musician Astrophysics programmed iconic Japanese vocaloid Hatsune Miku to sing the The Weeknd’s hit track Save Your Tears. The fat electronic sounds are the perfect complement to the synthesized vocals, and fit right in with The Weeknd’s 1980s vibe.

Famous Synth Sounds of the ’80s and ’90s

Famous Synth Sounds of the ’80s and ’90s

Are you an ’80s or ’90s kid? Then you’ll want to hit play on Estuera’s two-part video series about the synthesizers and presets that defined the sounds of two decades. Along the way, he performs excerpts from more than 40 tracks and makes them sound just like the originals, thanks in part to Arturia’s synth emulation tech.

She’s a Trooper

She’s a Trooper

The 1980s gave us quite the variety of music. Bill McClintock imagines what might have happened if Iron Maiden and Michael Sembello went on tour in 1983 and performed a song together. We would have gone with the title “She’s a Maniac Trooper,” which sounds much more like a 1980s sci-fi action movie.

1986: A Batman/Punisher Fan Film

1986: A Batman/Punisher Fan Film

(PG-13: Language) James Campbell’s intense fan film imagines a cyberpunk 1980s version of Gotham City. As Penguin and Joker rule the streets, the only cure is a double whammy of angry vigilantes to put a beat-down on the baddies under the neon lights. But is Gotham big enough for these two dealers of justice?

Cup Noodles 70s and 80s T-Shirts

Cup Noodles 70s and 80s T-Shirts
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Cup Noodles (aka Cup O’ Noodles) have been filling bellies on a budget for 50 years. To celebrate, Nissin has released a series of limited-edition retro t-shirts celebrating the early years of instant ramen. There’s a classic Japanese 1971 tee, a psychedelic ’70s tee, and a neon ’80s tee.

Holding Out for a Metal Hero

Holding Out for a Metal Hero

Appearing on the Footloose soundtrack, the Bonnie Tyler and Jim Steinman song Holding out for a Hero is the poster child for 1980s musical excess. Leo Moracchioli swaps synths for screams with a heavy metal cover of the track that would give John Lithgow’s judgmental reverend a heart attack if he heard it.

My Sharona Fingerstyle

My Sharona Fingerstyle

Never gonna stop, give it up. The Knack’s track My Sharona was one of the biggest earworms of the late ’70s and early ’80s. Guitarist Luca Stricagnoli gives the song his own groovy style with an energetic acoustic guitar cover. We thought we might miss the drumbeat, but Luca gives us plenty of rhythm from the guitar’s wooden body.

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I Can’t Go for That Instrumental Cover

I Can’t Go for That Instrumental Cover

The Daryl Hall & John Oates track I Can’t Go for That (No Can Do) is a true classic. KOSMusic teamed up with saxophone player Kevin Bene to perform this instrumental cover that nailed the 1980s synth sounds of the original so well that we kept expecting the vocals to kick in.

Hell Comes to Frogtown Trailer

Hell Comes to Frogtown Trailer

In 1988, pro wrestler “Rowdy” Roddy Piper and Conan the Barbarian’s Sandahl Bergman starred in a campy sci-fi action movie called Hell Comes to Frogtown. Perhaps the producers thought people would take it more seriously with the voiceover in this trailer. The second trailer is equally entertaining.

VHS Hoodie

VHS Hoodie
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Be kind and rewind to the 1980s with MoonLambo’s graphic hoodie, inspired by VHS cassette box art. Its made from a soft and cozy mix of polyester, cotton, and elastane for stretch, and is dye-sublimated to keep its looks from fading – unlike that Lethal Weapon tape you rented from Blockbuster that’s been played 1000 times.

Squid Game Synthwave Style

Squid Game Synthwave Style

Jung Jae-il’s soundtrack from the hit show Squid Game is equally intense, memorable, quirky, and creepy. YSSY combined the tracks Pink Soldiers and Way Back When and transformed them into a 1980s inspired synthwave song suitable for another Netflix series, Stranger Things.

Timex T80 x Space Invaders Watches

Timex T80 x Space Invaders Watches
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8-bit gaming fans will dig these retro-style Timex watches with pixel artwork and sound effects from the arcade classic Space Invaders. They have an old-school green-gray LCD screen with Indiglo lighting and 24-hour chronograph, alarm, and month/day/date functions. Available in black, silver, or gold finishes.

Retro Tech: Cassette-Changing Boombox

Retro Tech: Cassette-Changing Boombox

Techmoan takes a look at one of the stranger boomboxes ever made, the Mitsubishi TX-L50. At first glance, it’s a perfectly ordinary-looking boombox, but this one has a mechanism that lets it play both sides of up to five cassettes for up to 10 hours of continuous music when used with 120-minute tapes.

Arcade1up TRON Arcade Machine

Arcade1up TRON Arcade Machine

The 1982 TRON arcade machine known as much for its awesome glowing blue joystick as it is for its gameplay. Now, Arcade1up has replicated the machine in a 3/4-scale version for home arcade enthusiasts, complete with a black light and reactive cabinet art. It also plays Discs of TRON. Pre-orders start 10.19.2021.

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Peter Hook + Joy Division Orchestrated

Peter Hook + Joy Division Orchestrated

Peter Hook, musical director Tim Crooks, and an ensemble of musicians perform Love Will Tear Us Apart from their Dreams EP, which features four classic Joy Division tracks reimagined with an orchestra. Tracks include Atmosphere, New Dawn Fades, and A Means to an End, plus two alternative versions.

VHS Sneakers

VHS Sneakers
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MoonLambo asks us to be kind and rewind with its tribute to the bold and colorful graphical style of 1980s VHS tape boxes. While the chunky hi-top look of the Classic Collector’s Edition is our fave, they also make a less expensive canvas VHS sneaker.

Maiden Goes to Hollywood

Maiden Goes to Hollywood

Wax Audio blended together the sounds of two very different bands with seemingly little in common. But both Iron Maiden and Frankie Goes to Hollywood share more than just British roots and 1984 hit albums – they both created music inspired by the works of poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge.

’80s Piano Medley

’80s Piano Medley

The 1980s were a good decade for music, giving us bands like Tears for Fears, The Human League, and Soft Cell along the way. To celebrate his love for the new wave, pop, and rock music from the decade of big hair and Rubik’s Cubes, stone-faced pianist Vinheteiro offers up a 5-minute concert of some of the era’s best tracks.

Floppy Drive Video Demo

Floppy Drive Video Demo

Back in the 1980s, the demoscene was all about creating cool motion visuals and music using the computers of the day. Engineer Matthias Kramm figured out a way to create an old-school demo without a computer by hacking the output of an old Commodore 1541 floppy drive into a video signal. More details on his blog.

The Last Video Store VR Game

The Last Video Store VR Game

RareBird Games created this VR gaming oddity. The game sends players back in time to a Blockbuster-style video store to wander the shelves looking for movies to rent on VHS and DVD. In survival mode, you’ll work to make money for bills and movie rentals, and you’ll even be able to watch some movies inside of the game.

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