Country of Manufacture:Germany
Release dates:1957 - 1960
Speeds: 1 7/8, 3 3/4, 7 1/2
Max Reel Size("): 3"
Number of heads: 2
Head Composition: Permalloy
Head Configuration: Mono - Full Track
Sound quality rating:5 / 10
Long-term reliability rating: 5/ 10
Minifon, first developed in 1952 by Monske GMBH of Hanover, was an ultra-miniaturised,
battery operated wire recorder originally fitted with miniature valves
(tubes). It could not (initially at least) record the full range
of sounds and was thus limited to voice recording but it did offer easy
portability in a very small package.
When the machine was first introduced in 1952
it had a recording time of one hour and weighed about 3 pounds (1.36 kg).
The basic cost was (US)$289.50.
Later versions were modified to use transistors and magnetic tape but
even as late as the early 1960s the model 240 was still using wire.
(It was almost definitely the last wire recorder in production and sold
The Minifon pictured here comes from English
collector Stuart Blacklock who has provided the following description
“… The Minifon was classed as a dictation
machine, so small it would fit into your pocket. This machine was, in
1957, the world’s smallest dictating machine.
At the front of the machine appear the following
Play, Record, Rewind and Stop.
Batteries: motor 24v anode 30v & filament 1.5v / Fast rewind speed: 14 seconds for 1 minute of wire / Inputs: microphone and motor power supply / Outputs: headphones / Weight: ½ kg with batteries / Tape format: wire