Phonofone II by Science + Sons
OK, I’m now on the Phonofone bandwagon. I think I’ve read no less than 10 posts on the topic which will all tell you the same thing I’m about to tell you: The Phonofone by Science and Sons is a ceramic amplification system for you iPod. This mechanism uses passive horn acoustics to amplify you ear bud to a maximum of 55 decibels which is about the loudest a typical laptop speaker will produce. The company claims that the sound, compared to a typical laptop speaker, is rich, warm, and quite good for what it is. Of course, as one might suspect, the music amplified through the Phonofone will probably want to be classical and not techno or other bass intensive music which is difficult to amplify naturally.
So what’s cool about it? For starters, the Phonophone is a true piece of art. I’ve always been attracted to ceramics to begin with, but if you add in the nostalgia of it’s iconic form and the integration of new technology, then you have broken through into the world of extreme object of desire. Not to mention, wouldn’t it be nice to pass this down to your son or daughter as an heirloom of early 19th century technology? What’s funny about this device is because new technology has left old technology in the dust that it has clouded such useful devices as the gramaphone into obscurity. Kids now would most likely want to know where you might change the batteries on a device like this not realizing that the invention is about exploiting physical properties long forgotten. It’s a device like this that makes me want to re-examine ancient technologies that required no electrical power to see if I can find new ways to harness this historic ingenuity.