When I first received the Model One Digital (Gen. 2) from Tivoli Audio, I was stoked to finally try out one of their radios.
Over the years I’ve had dozens of smaller desktop-style radios. They’ve all fallen short in one way or another. But I’ve never come across anything quite like this.
The Model One Digital is in a different class — and you can tell before you even open the box. Care was quite clearly given from the sleek packaging all the way to the power cord.
The device looks like it could be taken back to 1955, and no one would notice it was out of place. The slick retro design made me want to like it before I ever heard a sound.
The radio comes in Walnut/Grey (actual walnut, I might add), White/Grey, and Black Ash/Black.
The device weighs in at a reasonable 3.4 lbs and doesn’t take up too much of my nightstand at 4.5” x 8.7” x 5.5”. It ships with the radio (I hate using the word radio because it’s so much more), a power supply, a quick start guide, a remote control, and an actual working antenna.
I suppose first and foremost, I should mention this thing is an actual live DAB+/FM radio. With its 2’+ antenna, it picks up quite well, too.
The Model One Digital comes with Airplay 2 and Google Chromecast built-in — connectable through Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. It’s also compatible with Spotify Connect and others.
Whether you connect through Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or the auxiliary jack, the sound from the thing is so much more than what you might expect.
I had been in the market for a decent home office system for quite some time, so when this came in it seemed like the perfect fit. I sat it on a table in the corner of the room with my desk in the opposite corner.
I’ve put through everything from classical music to waves to heavy metal and it is consistently crisp, clear, and far punchier than one would ever expect. It seems to hang on really well through most frequency ranges, with a low-end that doesn’t overwhelm the rest of the spectrum.
To be clear, that doesn’t mean a weak low end. With the volume at 50%, I can feel it in my chest from across the room.
In my opinion, that broad coverage of the full tonal range is an area where many similar systems fall short.
Because I have it set up in a corner, it’s like the sound is coming from everywhere when I crank it up.
The sound holds up very well even at max volume (which is loud … like very loud). At lower volumes, it does seem a tad darker, but to a lesser extent than I’ve seen on other devices in recent years.
Firmware updates for the Model One Digital are automatic via Wi-Fi, so make sure to read the manual to use the device to its full potential.
The price tag isn’t cheap, at $349.99, but I have paid more for much, much less. With so many listening and connection options, it’s a perfect fit for a house that’s a blend of Apple and Android devices. Frankly, for the quality you’re receiving, I’d have expected more like $500.
This was my first entry into Tivoli Audio, and I’ve already picked out two more that I need in my home.
- DAB+ / FM radio (DAB+ in available market)
- Airplay 2 and Google Chromecast built-in
- Spotify® Connect
- Aux input
- Full-function remote control
- Streamline navigation through simple hands-on controls
- Stream audio from all Airplay 2 and Google Chromecast supported services such as Spotify®, Apple Music, Google Play, Tidal, Deezer, Pandora, TuneIn, and more
- Available in three real wood cabinet finishes
- Fabric speaker grill
- This product can connect with other Airplay 2 and Google Chromecast built-in speakers. This product cannot Wi-Fi connect with Generation 1 ART products.