Do the Italians do it better? You bet they do, especially when it comes to the Italian high-end audio rack company Bassocontinuo. Bassocontinuo has a long and rich history of manufacturing high-end audio rack systems, dating back to 2008. If you have visited some of Sonus Faber’s or McIntosh’s high-end audio exhibitions, you have almost certainly seen Bassocontinuo’s products on active or silent displays. The same is true for some of the most renowned high-end audio distributors and dealers around the world.
Almost ten years ago, Bassocontinuo introduced the first AEON system with a carbon fiber rack, updated in 2022.
This carbon fiber-based monocoque system, now in its second iteration and called AEON X, EOS X, ARGO X, or MAXI ARGO X depending on the configuration, represents a most unique offering in the market.
The AEON REVOLUTION X offers an impressive way to not only showcase high-end audio components but to actively use them to their full potential.
Not long ago, I had the luxury and pleasure of visiting a small, family-run boutique carbon fiber manufacturer near Bassocontinuo’s headquarters.
This boutique factory has been making carbon fiber for a long time. It is now run by the second generation, a young, enthusiastic, and knowledgeable CEO who was raised and actively involved by the founder (father) from an early age.
What I saw during my extended visit there was very inspiring. The company manufactures various types of end or OEM products for the top sports, luxury, automotive, motorcycle, and other industries.
Due to NDA and trade secrets, I can not tell you the exact brand names and locations, but I did see that the products on display were made for some of the most prestigious brands in the world.
Over the decades, the company has invested heavily in the specialized carbon fiber machinery that allows it to produce everything in-house. Lorenzo Belloli had to stubbornly insist that this manufacturer started producing the AEON REVOLUTION X integral parts for his Bassocontinuo products, but it paid off!
I can confirm this because I reviewed the original version back in 2015, but the latest generation surpasses everything in terms of material quality, performance, and execution.
The process of making carbon fiber is too often simplified. It takes years and hundreds, if not thousands, of hours, for a particular product to perform optimally under certain conditions.
In audio, it’s even more complicated, because, in addition to structural rigidity, there’s another important factor: sonic performance.
Bassocontinuo has done everything possible to ensure that it is not just another so-called carbon fiber audio frame. It was designed from the ground up by carbon fiber specialist and industrial designer Christoph Nussbaumer, who has a special history and experience with industrial design and the use of composite materials (Scarpa, Atomic, Smeg, etc.).
Bassocontinuo uses the same monocoque technology that is used in the safety cells of Formula 1.
Belloli also worked closely with Vicoter, a private institute specializing in structural engineering and testing in the aerospace, automotive, transportation, and energy sectors.
Vibration, vibration noise, and micro resonance data measured and reported by Vicoter came from numerous static load tests and modal analyses performed with 28 accelerometers (monoaxial and triaxial).
This provided Bassocontinuo with objective data to optimize the densities of the damping materials and the lamination processes of the carbon fibers.
In my private tour of this carbon fiber facility, I saw the AELON REVOLUTION X frames and shelves manufactured from the first steps to the end. It’s a tremendous, time-consuming undertaking with hours of exceptional craftsmanship and painstaking effort to achieve a gratifying result.
No machine or automated process can guarantee or eliminate this type of manufacturing. These are truly handmade products where I have seen on-site how different layers of carbon fiber are layered, hand cut to exact dimensions and then attached layer by layer to form a special frame and shelves that can withstand the pressure and handle the resonances with a controlled and repetitive standard.
There is no way to speed up the process, as this type of work requires a professional who must be precisely trained to achieve a certain level of quality that can be reproduced in detail every time, providing unchanged rigidity and performance.
Bassocontinuo is meant to be premium luxury audio products and this requires careful quality control at every turn to ensure that the parts used are not damaged or scratched and that all parts fit perfectly.
Belloli spent a tremendous amount of energy personally assisting workers and explaining to them (and still does) why the final product must be free of physical and visual damage, as consumer expectations are high at this level. People who want Bassocontinuo are accustomed to top quality, as found in luxury carbon fiber products from other industries, always made to perfection, which includes the correctly aligned weaving of the textile structure and the final glossy or matte finish.
After seeing all that goes into the production of Bassocontinuo AEON REVOLUTION X carbon fiber parts, as well as visiting other small, specialized local manufacturers who make the rest of the parts for all Bassocontinuo racks, I can only appreciate Bassocontinuo even more.
Belloli insisted that I come by and see what it takes to make Bassocontinuo high-end audio equipment to fully understand, comprehend and appreciate the effort. And I am glad I did.
My appreciation for this Italian high-end audio rack company has grown many times over, and I can honestly and wholeheartedly recommend AEON and the rest of the Bassocontinuo lines because they are genuine, made in Italy, sourced from local suppliers, and executed and assembled to the highest quality.
Lorenzo and Paola Belloli take great care to ensure that Bassocontinuo products are made in the best way and arrive in perfect condition to customers all over the world.
They are proud of what they do day after day. Bassocontinuo undoubtedly continues the rich Italian heritage of high-quality handmade products, conceived, designed, manufactured, assembled, and packaged with the utmost care and attention to the smallest detail.
Italians are known for their quality, which is visible and often hidden from the naked eye. But when a product is made with true passion and quality, there is an underlying and underpinning quality that simply exudes a special and unmistakable Italian DNA. And Bassocontinuo radiates from the inside out with a pure Italian aura.
And these steps are reflected in Bassocontinuo’s products, where all design elements and decisions have been researched, tested, and refined down to the smallest details to ensure luxurious, high-performance Italian quality and consequently convey the pride of ownership.
This quality of AEON REVOLUTION X can be found in all Bassocontinuo products.
I asked Bassocontinuo’s CEO, Lorenzo Belloli, about the pricing, as he could easily charge double the price for AEON REVOLUTION X racks compared to what the competition is doing. In response, he explained that he simply wants to make the prices affordable so that many more people can use Bassocontinuo racks either in their homes or in a dedicated listening room with beloved and carefully assembled high-end audio systems. Cannot argue or contradict this reply…
Visitors to Munich High-End Audio 2023 will be able to see the Bassocontinuo AEON X in the AUDIO REFERENCE room in Atrium 3.1 Room D 111, and another continuation of the Bassocontinuo REVOLUTION X line will soon be unveiled… ⧉