Object, Instrument, Technology

Minifon P55 portable wire recorder

Date of

Date of creation: 1955–1960

This picture shows the Minifon P55 portable recorder, produced by the Protona company in Hamburg, Germany. It belongs to the same group of electromagnetic wire recorders as the Webster Chicago recorder and the MN-61 military recorder. It is notable for its small size, which facilitated covert operation. According to a collector’s website, special accessories such as a hidden microphone were sold for the Minifon. The device required three different kinds of batteries to work.


This photograph was taken by Nikita Braguinski at the Media Studies department, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, in April 2018. The unit shown here is part of the department’s collection of historical devices, the Media Archaeological Fundus (accession no. 148).



Collector’s website containing a detailed description of the Minifon (automatic translation)


Nikita Braguinski

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