Cool Stuff

Basic Instincts: Brionvega totem

Our watchword on World Radio Day is: "Back to basics". However, we don't mean tube amplifiers and FM radios, but a perfectly designed and timeless audio device with state-of-the-art technology that also combines the past and the future.

  • Text
    Marko Knab
  • Photos
    Brionvega

Form and function, square and round, white and black. What do these terms have in common? In this case, they are the ingredients of the Brionvega totem. Designed by Mario Bellini in 1971, the combi-radio pays homage to elementary forms: A simple white, cubic volume with black loudspeakers that can be assembled and reassembled in a modular fashion to create a sophisticated hi-fi device. The two speakers can be opened to reveal the stereo module, the radio module and the controls. Like the six built-in speakers, these are again round in shape.

1/2

At the same time, totem itself is also very elementary: the two loudspeaker boxes can be removed and placed in the room, away from the main console. In addition to the usual FM radio, the new version of the totem has a state-of-the-art DAB+ module and Bluetooth. And, as before, a record player. In other words: you get everything, but straightforward and free of unnecessary trimmings. "With the totem, I didn't necessarily want to appeal to the individual enthusiast, the passionate experimenter. Rather, I wanted to give the system a beautiful shape so that it would fit better into a domestic environment," says Mario Bellini, explaining his design.

Or straight to the Museum of Modern Arts in New York. Because there is also a copy of the design object here. Goal achieved. And much more.
Functions:
  • AM radio
  • FM radio with RDS
  • DAB/DAB+ radio
  • Record player with 33/45 rpm
  • Bluetooth HD (external device - included)
  • 125 + 125W amplifier Speakers detachable from the console


→ brionvega.com

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