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 The World of Sub-Woofers

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Michael Green
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PostSubject: The World of Sub-Woofers   Sun Jan 24, 2016 12:03 am



Sub-woofers have been a part of sound reproduction since the early 60's. You might be interested in some of the history according to wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subwoofer

Depending on use and experience, you might have your own personal take on full range speaker designing, but the basic design is based on being able to go where the main speakers won't with the same amount of or desired boost of pressure on the low end. In night club and concert setups, I used and designed the Subs to bring the performance to life by adding pressure, creating impact to the whole body. The audiophile world tends to think of frequency responses, but sub-woofers are creatures of vibration & pressure. The advent was to bring feeling to the music. Balanced source production and reactive rooms are what is known as "live sound" among listeners, and this thread is about the physics and practical applications of the vibratory interactions that take place and are a part of bringing the music to life.

first things first

It's important as audiophiles to understand the range and scope of making recordings. To assume that the space & recording techniques are all to produce the same results is a mistake and unfounded. Even though early audiophile magazines talked about "the absolute sound" and was maybe misunderstood to be saying only one type of production is correct, this simply has never been the goal of recordings.



The whole idea of recording is to paint a picture of sound we call the "soundstage". I recommend reading my thread on "the audio code". http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/t268-the-audio-code



If you can get your mind around the audio code and recorded code, your well on your way to putting the physics pieces together.

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Last edited by Michael Green on Sun Jan 24, 2016 3:48 pm; edited 6 times in total
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PostSubject: Re: The World of Sub-Woofers   Sun Jan 24, 2016 1:16 am



Luke, use the force Laughing

Well actually that's the idea behind recreating a soundstage and controlling pitch correctness and musical timbre. Timbre is the character and quality of a musical note, or series of notes, that is distinct in its pitch and intensity. As shades are to color, timbre is to music. Let's repeat this..

Pitch or sku in color is the same as timbre in music.

Both of these are, in application, flowing (ever changing) variables. You may be able to fix on a particular moment as a snap shot measurement, but from moment to moment the variables change within the nature of physics. This can be a minute change or major one depending on the vibratory (oscillative) conditions.

here's timbre in action

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRAXK4QKJ1Q

the differences

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7k5Ml7HoVoQ

music meets science

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nlv5bylQDsE

There are many lessons availible thanks to the internet that can get you up to speed on the variables. Why is this important? Music is about motion. Without vibratory interaction you would hear no sound at all. Nothing moving=no sound. A frequency (cycle) is a vibratory (oscillative) unit that is motion+pressure valued. A note is a fundamental+support structures of harmonics.

In playing back music through your stereo, you can gain or decrease volume and qualities of timbre by killing, freeing or tuning your system through the entire audio chain. All 3 of these are mechanical/acoustical vibratory settings that can either make a replica, amplify or distort your soundstage. Of course killing the vibrations causes loss of content, and freeing vibrations with no control leads to lack of body and structure. The third option "tuning" is the combination of freeing+control. As a result the instrument and or stereo can have the maximum dynamic range while allowing the soundstage to be intact (in-tune). Tuning is the basis of all musical instrument and stereo adjustments. Tuning is how you are able to dial in the desired specifics of your sound.



Speakers are made up of drivers and environment. A 3way box speaker for example will have drivers (tweeter, mid-woofer, woofer), the speaker cabinet and the room.  All of these together make the pressure you hear & feel. Note: you can't remove the physical room, therefore the room itself is the speaker as much as the drivers and cabinet.

another important fact

No matter how brilliant of audio engineer, no matter how many years an audiophile, there is one thing you will not do "Isolate yourself from physics".



In the science of audio in your listening room, there is no such thing as absolute isolation. You can absorb, reflect, amplify, transfer, convert, put in and out of tune, but you can not isolate audio from the Earth's physics. You, your system and your listening environment conforms to the laws of the fundamental forces and interactions of nature, as it is in action (continuum) within our scope of effect. Audiophile marketers can theorize and tempt you with the impossible all they want, giving you partial truths and audio myths, but one thing you can bank on is, whatever you do to your audio system, your going to be doing it on this planet, and according to this planet's physics.

example

On another forum you can read that an audiophile system can be isolated by placing a component on springs. The laws of gravity, interaction, mechanical transfer and dissipation...among many others would need to be turned off for this to take place. As soon as that component touches springs or any other material, those materials become a part of the components vibratory code. Pursuing the absolute isolation theory further you would also need to stop the Earth from spinning, get rid of the moon, cancel the sun and flatten the Earth. Our new flattened Earth would also need to be made of the same material in the same measured amounts, with no interaction from outside interference such as the universe. Looking at all that would need to be done to accommodate the audio myth of absolute isolation, it seems our lives would be easier to swallow, if we simply learn and applied the laws of physics, which can be looked up online in mass quantities.

The same poster on the other forum also says "audio is a mystery". No wonder, he's trying to make something orderly into random theories. We're not going to do this here. As a matter of fact, audio isn't all that hard. Audiophiles make it difficult by trying to make recording playback something it isn't. If you spend your time trying to bend the hobby of audio into something it is not, you will spend many years never rising above the revolving door of listening trade offs.

Put yourself inside of physics not opposing it from outside nature. Your audio system will happen "naturally" when you allow it to. This is also the secret to using your subwoofer.

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PostSubject: Re: The World of Sub-Woofers   Mon Jan 25, 2016 3:22 am



As you have been reading, there is no separation (isolation), speakers from room (environment). Common sense says "use the room", so does science. Audiophiles attempting to remove part of the natural cycle extention end up removing part of the music itself. Let's take a look at the audio range and where it sits in the placement of cycles.

take the time to read wiki on hertz

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hz

We are so use to standing on Earth our bodies have adapted (adopted) to the on going continuum of Earth's fundamental vibratory lowest cycles. It's important to look at this particular part on wiki. "Applications"


A sine wave with varying frequency, above

"Vibration (application)

Sound is a traveling longitudinal wave which is an oscillation of pressure. Humans perceive frequency of sound waves as pitch. Each musical note corresponds to a particular frequency which can be measured in hertz. An infant's ear is able to perceive frequencies ranging from 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz; the average adult human can hear sounds between 20 Hz and 16,000 Hz. The range of ultrasound, infrasound and other physical vibrations such as molecular and atomic vibrations extends from a few femtoHz into the terahertz range and beyond." wiki

It's a must to put these words together from above: sound, traveling, wave, oscillation, pressure, pitch, note, frequency, range, physical and extend.

All of these words are used in the application of "vibration". This is why I use the term "Vibratory Code". Every position on Earth has the fundamental code (Earth's core frequencies), and as you move up in Cycles the code becomes particular as the Vibratory Environment becomes unique within the over-all and specific physical set of values.

Note: every component part (capacitor, resister, wire, chassis...) also has a Vibratory Code attached to it as the materials, placement on Earth and conditions vary. In other words, you can not remove the fundamental interactions of physics from audio. There is no stoping continuum.

On Earth we have a distinct value shift that takes place that we can all see every day. To make it easy I've broken it down to two categories "Air & Solids". Within these all the fundamental interactions exist. Also within these you will find the useful scale of cycles (vibration oscillation).

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PostSubject: Re: The World of Sub-Woofers   Tue Jan 26, 2016 1:08 am



Time to draw your home and listening area into the picture.

I'm breaking down the world of Sub-woofers possibly a little differently than you'll get from a lot of audiophile sources and here's why. I don't see the audiophile hobby giving the whole, or should I say holistic, picture to listeners. The hobby spends too much time talking brands and promoting pieces and parts as a marketing ploy, or all this time on talking theory without looking at how things work practically. Let's be honest, any techno-engineer can whip together audio spectaculars and this particular hobby has created mountains of half baked myths, enclosed in beautifully made cabinets. That's all fine and good if you the buyer can afford to pay for appearance. However let us remind each other that this hobby is about the frequencies from 16hz-22khz and the structures that support this range.

When your listening space was built, part of it was designed to couple to the Earth (ground) and above. Basically the home was made to be an extention of the Earth as well as extending into air. Look at the drawing above for the reference.

Earlier we explored the fact that in the context of audio there is no such thing as "absolute isolation". Likewise there is no such thing as "de-coupling". The laws of physics say that everything audio has a relationship with vibration. If your thinking isolation and de-coupling as legit your loosing out on part of the audio code (signal) guaranteed. Your also loosing out on the benefits of physics. Values in physics work on a sliding scale not fixed. Timbre are the shades (pitch) of music. As this frequency scale is sliding and continuous, we can begin to discuss range in your home with more understanding.

in other words, your house is one big unique loudspeaker



Perhaps the most common mistake in high end audio is the idea that any part of the quest for great sound is a one size fits all. As a result of this false teaching listeners design their systems as if they will play themselves in auto correct mode somehow. We see people giving advice out as if it were an instant cure, a must have fix it, but this has never been how the science of audio works.

Successful listening is about understanding the whole, and the whole is all about a continuum of interaction.

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PostSubject: Re: The World of Sub-Woofers   Wed Jan 27, 2016 12:08 am



So if you have been looking at this hobby as plug & play, this thread is showing you what the real deal is study . The hobby of listening to music is made up of many variables and for some of you we are breaking new ground. Why didn't anyone tell you before? Think about it, how does a product based reviewer magazine show you the variations and at the same time sell you a one sound product?

It goes back to what an old friend of mine said to me many years ago. "You have two choices, sell a method and go broke vs sell a product and get rich". Product reviewing magazines don't teach you how to drive the car, they show you what the car did when they drove it. What we're here to do on TuneLand is give you the means to take your system further by making you the master of your sound. This is why I needed to show you first the biggest contributor of your sound. Advanced listening comes when you start to understand that you are placing a system inside of an environment that already has it's own set of musical values. Those values are "coupled" to the air, mass and energy that provides the physics of your sound. Great sound comes when you let your environment play your music. You are not hearing your components, your hearing your room play your components.

While companies and magazines do the marketing of products, TuneLand will pick up the slack on the method teaching side of things. Your audiophile text books may not be enough to take you past the basics, because they are designed to show you cookie cutter approaches. They usually show you a view from an engineering side and much theory, the what if all things were created alike instead of all things being created unique. A cookie cutter approach is enough to show the reader that techniques make a difference, but that's about where the info stops.

It all comes down to this scenario, how do you get that recording, to play on your system, the way "you" want it to sound?


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