“The Romans sweetened their wine with lead. It was not obvious that the painful and lingering deaths that resulted — decades afterwards — were caused by the metal dissolved in the wine.” (Taking the Medicine, by Druin Burch).
Don’t go against Nature: The Romans sweetened their wine with dissolved lead, and look what happened to them. GM, Aspartame, Glyphosphate, margarine, low-fat diets, loudspeakers that try not to produce any Standing Waves; all these things we’ve been told are “Good” for us are actually turning out to be bad because they are not as Nature intended.
OK, so this post sounds like it’s taking on the form of one of my Sunday Sanities, but it’s not. It’s more of a “why you need to bring Standing Waves back into your audio-reproduction equipment” kinda post.
All sounds are generated by resonating structures.
Therefore, all sounds are resonant Standing Waves, maintained by both the interaction of a structure and a medium, and a movement of the medium that surrounds it. This is an element that has never been addressed in loudspeaker design. When a saxophone is played, a constant flow of air passes and interacts with the flexible reed. This feature of the sound, the constant flow towards the listener, is impossible to reproduce in a loudspeaker as the cone movement is NOT constantly towards the listener but varies around it’s mounting point in the cabinet.
This is why reproduced music never, ever sounds “live”, and never will. It’s an audio-phile element of the Doppler effect, and would be representative of Current Flow if one was using an Electrical Model of Sound. To expand, in this model the Potential Difference may be seen as the sequence of pressure-waves emitted by a loudspeaker drive unit, but where lies the Magnetic-type component of the Acoustic Motive Force, spiraling around the conductor and expanding out as nested toroids at the speed of light with a period equivalent to the frequency reversals being transmitted through the wire?
In the loudspeaker’s Standing Wave.
At Standing Wave frequencies in undamped cabinets, the frequency of resonance is determined, not only by the cabinet characteristics, but also by the absorbancy characteristics of the environment, including energy taken by the ear’s cochlea. There is a feed-back to the loudspeaker due to the frequency-dependent Standing Wave Acoustic Induction effect. Strangely, this effect can be seen in the Electrical model in the facility to send Ethernet-data over house-hold mains-wiring by the reverse-use of a mains transformer!!! Why is this effect ignored in it’s sister Energy Transmission model, Acoustics?
Here, at Alacrity Audio, we take these elements very seriously; that’s why our loudspeakers sound like no others, we follow the Electrical model.
In the Electrical Model of Energy Transmission, the Transmitter is surrounded by an expanding toroidal nest of energy waves. To be more accurate, the energy wave formation is similar in it’s transitions to a woman wearing a flowing skirt, doing the “Twist”. It spins one way one moment, then in the next moment the opposite, expanding out in a group of nested, counter-oscillating doughnuts at the speed of light. (This effect was replicated acoustically in the early days of audio by the shape of the acoustic horn, which depicts in it’s shape the above mentioned toroid, enabling a standing wave to resonate from the needle to the ear with tiny amplitude.)
However, each receiving device (aerial or ear) perceives the incoming signal as a corkscrew, spiraling towards it individually (this is why the cochlea forms into the shape of a spiral). In TV transmissions for example, the lines of the picture (the “black and white ” elements) are contained in the ‘Y’ dimension (the “up and down” displacement) but the colour element of the TV picture is secreted in the ‘Z’ dimension (the corkscrew’s “side-to-side” displacement).
When a normal loudspeaker reaches this condition (ie, production of a complete signal), the results stand out most strongly from the from the background levels of loudspeaker/ear interaction (mere “sound” or simple pressure-waves) as the loudspeaker and ear are now connected by a Standing Resonant wave. Loudspeaker designers have long missed a trick by trying to prevent this effect, resulting in it appearing only periodically and problematically.
Because our loudspeakers produce Standing Waves at every frequency, this effect actually works in our favour, engaging the listener like no other loudspeaker with the ability to transmit bass frequencies and stereo information to the listener with amazing efficiency.
This is why our loudspeakers are the best.