At least you agreed with me on my central point that audiophile loudspeakers are inaccurate. This, because you are a pro-audio person who typically shuns this type of speaker - with good reason. I now join you, as disgruntled audiophile.
But at least I'm searching for a solution, a way out of this mess. You (as a non-audiophile), don't care what happens to the quality of home playback. You probably never listen to live music either..and that is fine..but it's futile to discuss which speakers have virtuous qualities with someone who doesn't even know what they are.
As for the link I provided, only now do you say it's "not balanced". And where does it say that we have to "increase the driver area" ? It advocates horns - which means SMALLER driver area !!
Here you, a professional, think we have to increase the radiating surface to lower distortion, which is total nonsense. As I stated before, most high-quality loudspeakers never use more than a 6 in. midrange and 1 in. tweeter. Some of the best speakers use a 4 in. midrange !!
If you read the report, you'll see that we have to divide the frequency by the harmonic distortion db (vs. fundamental), to arrive at the distortion percentage. And for more info on this, you simply follow the sources mentioned in the report, which in this case is The Insitute of Sound and Vibration Research, Keith Holland team leader. Easy enough ? We then apply these same techniques to other direct radiator vs. horn comparisons in the future.....
As to how horns work, it's quite difficult finding information on how they do - even you don't know. All we can do is read white papers and then if you're a designer, get into the math and start calculating values and experimenting with materials, crossover packages, etc. At least one white paper I would read is Avantgarde's - try it as a beginning.
Finally, I never, never said that horns are "magical". I simply stated that they have lower distortion and much greater SPL output. That's all. I understand that you are not an audiophile, but please be a little more open as to what can happen and respect the opinion of the music fans, some of whom know what the real thing sounds like......