Loudspeakers: For Music Recording and Reproduction

Loudspeakers: For Music Recording and Reproduction

by Philip Newell, Keith Holland


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The choice and positioning of loudspeakers is often down to intuition, hearsay and chance due to the lack of clear information available. Loudspeakers uses real data to give you practical advice and a better understanding of the tools you are using to improve results.

Philip Newell and Keith Holland, assisted by Sergio Castro, share over 100 years of combined experience, providing you with in-depth information on strengths and weaknesses of loudspeaker design, their application within a studio and the part they play within a system setup. Whether you are using loudspeakers in a recording studio, mastering facility, broadcasting studio, film post production facility or home studio with Loudspeakers you will be able to make the right choices to get the best sound out of your equipment!

About the Author:
Philip Newell is an international consultant on acoustic design and former technical director of Virgin Records

About the Author:
Keith Holland is a lecturer in electro-acoustics at the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research at the University of Southampton

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781138554801
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Publication date: 11/12/2018
Series: Audio Engineering Society Presents Series
Edition description: New
Pages: 520
Product dimensions: 7.50(w) x 9.75(h) x (d)

About the Author

Philip Newell is a Fellow of the Institute of Acoustics (IOA), a member of both the Audio Engineering Society (AES) and the Society of Motion Picture and Television Engineers (SMPTE), and a member of the Seaplane Pilots Association. He has written ten books on acoustics and electroacoustics, and has published around 200 related articles, journal papers, and conference papers. Since 1992 he has lived in Spain, and during the course of his work has travelled to over 30 countries. His recording career has been very musically varied, from the Duke Ellington Orchestra to Queen, from The Who to The Warsaw Philharmonic Orchestra, from Mike Oldfield to John Cale, and from English brass bands to Welsh choirs.

Dr Keith Holland is currently an Associate Professor (Senior Lecturer) at the Institute of Sound and Vibration Research (ISVR), University of Southampton, UK, where he has worked full time as a student, researcher, and lecturer since 1984, and from where he obtained a BSc in Engineering Acoustics and Vibration in 1987, and a PhD on loudspeaker horns in 1993. Since 1990, Keith has taught electroacoustics and various other subjects, mainly audio-related, to under- and post-graduate students at the ISVR, and for ten of those years, also to the Tonmeister students at the University of Surrey.

The artwork for Loudspeakers has been co-ordinated by Sergio Castro, a highly experienced musician, record producer, and recording engineer, with over 25 years of experience in the manufacturing of professional monitoring loudspeakers. The authors were also assisted by Julius Newell, an expert in electroacoustics and sound-system engineering, and who is also an established designer and manufacturer of professional monitoring loudspeakers.

Table of Contents

About the authors     xi
Acknowledgements     xv
Preface     xvii
Introduction     xix
What is a loudspeaker?     1
A brief look at the concept     1
A little history and some background     2
Some other problems     4
Some basic facts     5
Acoustic wave propagation     5
Mechanical and acoustic impedance     7
Impedance in loudspeakers     9
The practical moving-coil cone loudspeaker     9
The combined response     12
Resistive and reactive loads     14
The bigger picture     20
References     20
Bibliography     21
Diversity of design     22
Moving-coil cone loudspeakers     22
Cones     23
Surrounds     30
Rear suspensions     32
The chassis     34
The voice-coil assembly     35
Magnet systems     36
Ferrofluids     39
The complete system     39
Dome loudspeakers     40
Hard and soft domes     43
Compression drivers     45
Ribbonloudspeakers     48
Heil air-motion transformers     50
Distributed mode loudspeakers     51
Panel/piston combinations     55
Beyond magnetics     56
Piezoelectric devices     57
Ionic loudspeakers     57
Electrostatic loudspeakers     58
Electromagnetic planar loudspeakers     63
Summary     63
References     64
Bibliography     64
Loudspeaker cabinets     65
The concept of the infinite baffle     65
The sealed box     67
Acoustic suspensions     71
Reflex enclosures     71
Acoustic labyrinths     76
Modern transmission lines     78
ABR systems     81
Bandpass cabinets     82
Series driver operation and isobaric loudspeakers     84
General discussion     85
Cabinet lining materials     86
Cabinet constructions     87
Cabinet shapes and diffraction effects     88
Front grilles     92
Cabinet mounting     93
References     95
Horns     96
The horn as a transformer      96
Directivity control     102
Horn design compromises     103
Non-linear acoustics     104
Examples of non-linear acoustics in loudspeakers     105
Practical horns in studios and homes     107
Implications for practical horn design parameters     108
Summary of results     112
General horn characteristics     113
Phasing plugs     115
Acoustics lenses     117
Horn types     118
Materials of construction     119
Vestigial horns and 'waveguides'     120
Flare rates     121
References     123
Crossovers     124
What is a crossover?     124
Reconstruction problems     125
Orders, slopes and shapes     129
Filter shapes     137
Target functions     139
Minimum and non-minimum phase effects     140
Corrective measures and side-effects     141
Active versus passive crossovers     142
Physical derivation of crossover delay     146
Digital crossovers     147
References     150
Bibliography     150
Effects of amplifiers and cables     151
Amplifiers - an over-view     151
Basic requirements for current and voltage output     153
Transient response     154
Non-linear distortions     157
Amplifier classes and modes of operation     158
Class A amplifiers     159
Class A derivatives     160
Class AB     161
Class D     161
Class G and H     163
MOSFET or BJT?     163
Choosing an amplifier     164
Loudspeaker cables and their effect on system performance     166
The bare minimum     166
The status quo     168
Cable designs for loudspeaker use     169
The amplifier/loudspeaker interface     170
Some provable characteristics of cable performance     174
Some passing comments     188
Multi-cabling     191
Polyamplification and multiamplification     192
System design     193
References     194
Bibliography     195
Loudspeaker behaviour in rooms     196
The anechoic and reverberation chambers     196
Boundary loading and room gain      198
Restriction of radiating space     202
The mirrored room and mutual coupling     205
Room reflexions     206
Resonant modes     209
Flush-mounting     211
Multichannel considerations and phantom imaging     212
Stereo perception in rooms     216
Rooms for critical listening     217
Electronic, digitally adaptive response correction     220
Minimum and non-minimum phase responses     225
References     227
Bibliography     227
Form follows function     229
The chain     229
Recording monitors     230
Basic requirements     233
Proportional costs     237
Different approaches     238
Crossover points     241
Power consideration     245
Interfacing with the rooms     248
A word about listening levels     250
Mixing monitors     250
Location dilemmas     258
Mastering loudspeakers     258
Domestic loudspeakers     263
Musical instrument loudspeakers     264
Cabinet designs     267
Summary      269
References     269
Bibliography     270
Subjective and objective assessment     271
The general situation     271
Test signals and analysis     272
Frequency response plots     275
Waterfall plots     277
Harmonic distortion     281
Intermodulation distortion     283
Delta-functions and step-functions     288
Acoustic source plots     292
Cepstrum analysis     295
Modulation transfer functions     297
Application of room equalisation     298
A D-to-A dilemma     301
Sound fields and human perception     302
Further perceptual considerations     305
References     309
Bibliography     310
The mix, the music and the monitors     311
Physics or psychology?     311
The musical dependence of compatibility     312
Sine waves and pink noise     314
Real responses vs. preconceived ideas     314
Acknowledgement     319
Low frequency and transient response dilemmas     320
The great low frequency deception     320
The air spring      321
Size, weight and sensitivity     324
Further consequences of small size     326
Commercial solutions     326
The time penalty     327
The transient trade-off     330
The evolution of the desk-top monitor     333
The great time deception     339
Resonant tails and one-note bass     339
The masking of detail     342
Theoretical equalisation and excess phase     343
Modulation transfer-function and a new type of frequency response plot     345
Summing-up     350
References     351
The challenges of surround sound     352
Surround sound in professional studios     352
Cinema sound     357
Music mixing     360
Sub-woofers - discrete and managed     362
Size versus performance compromises     364
Compound sub-woofers and electronic control     368
System considerations     372
References     375
Glossary of terms     376
Index     395

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