For some reason, speaker systems seem to be a struggle to design and we never see many than strike us as being particularly beautiful; most of them all tending to retain a very similar design to all of their counterparts. Of course, there are times when speaker design is taken to the extreme other direction and they come out looking chaotic or alien like. We've gathered some designs which we believe hit the sweet spot of looking unique yet still retain a sophisticated elegance which would fit nicely within any modern home. Additionally, we couldn't help ourselves and snuck in a plea for a design concept of our own.
1. Zikmu Wireless Speaker System
Designed by the mighty Philippe Starck, the Zikum allows for Wi-Fi streaming as well as iPod/iPhone functionality. It also has the ability to emit 360 degrees of sound. We love the cone-like shape that reminds us of a simplified trumpet. Be sure to check out the packing at the above link to really appreciate how the entire design of this product was considered.
2. Geneva Sound System Model XL
This powerful cube packs true stereo sound inside its minimalist housing. The base is simple and unobtrusive. It is available in a white, black, bright red, or walnut casing. Home Theater magazine gave it the Rave award for best new product while Metropolis magazine actually designated it the #1 new, sustainable product at the time of its release due to its environmentally friendly construction.
3. Wall of Sound by Brothers
Go big or go home, right? Claiming to be the most powerful iPod speaker on the market, it also makes the claim at possibly being the most powerful of all time. To be honest, we're not sure if this isn't just a huge joke but we like to think it is real — supposedly the first generation of speakers have all sold out and they're in the process of making the second. To be fair though, we like how simple and straightforward the design is. It reminds us of the now defunct Hi-Fi stereo system provided by Apple.
4. Phonofone II by Science & Sons
Ok, ok… We realize this isn't a floor speaker but it is one of our absolutely favorite iPod speakers around. This beautiful ceramic speaker utilizes analog methods of sound amplification to transmit that which is coming from your ear buds, to a volume heard through the room. Of course we love how the form is directly derived from a gramophone, as well.
5. Dieter Rams's LE1 Loudspeaker w/ iPod Capability
Designed in 1960 for Braun, this floor speaker is nothing less than a work of art. The purity of form and function are married together in such a way that it remains so modern and fresh, even until this day. We would love if Braun would re-release this as an updated version to support an iPod. Since Apple's work is heavily inspired by Rams's designs, we imagine the iPod would fit right in with this setup. Please, someone make our dreams come true!