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mattersville
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Joined: Apr 20 2009 - 1:27am
Speaker sensibility

Hi everyone!
I have a big doubt obout how is the most accurate way to messure a speaker sensibility. what are the differences of using a pure tone and using a pink noise to feed the speaker?

Thanks!

jackfish
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Joined: Dec 19 2005 - 2:42pm
Re: Speaker sensibility

I much prefer my speakers be sensitive rather than sensible. That way I can enjoy them for their emotion, not their logic.

Buddha
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Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Speaker sensibility

Quote:
Hi everyone!
I have a big doubt obout how is the most accurate way to messure a speaker sensibility. what are the differences of using a pure tone and using a pink noise to feed the speaker?

Thanks!

My wife says that checking price is the key to speaker sensibility.

Anything over 999 dollars per pair strikes her as not sensible.

However, she thinks I've found some great deals! She can hear it, she just can't justify it.

Xenophanes
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Last seen: 6 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 7 2005 - 2:48pm
Re: Speaker sensibility

Quote:
Hi everyone!
I have a big doubt obout how is the most accurate way to messure a speaker sensibility. what are the differences of using a pure tone and using a pink noise to feed the speaker?

Thanks!

I think you mean 'sensitivity,' which is usually the output of a speaker measured with a 2.83 volt signal. 2.83 volts into an 8 ohm load is equivalent to 1 watt, but since the vast majority of speakers have a varying impedance vs. frequency curve it would be difficult to actually measure a 1 watt curve. And it would be useless, because speakers are voltage sensitive.

Since 1 meter away is often not a very good distance to measure a speaker, I gather the results at a greater distance are converted mathematically to a 1 meter equivalent.

The problem with measuring sensitivity at a single frequency is that there may be a peak or dip at that frequency. So pink noise is better, and different ranges have been used. You can plow through John Atkinson's articles on how Stereophile measures speakers, you no doubt can figure out how Stereophile does it. It is very easy to locate what done by the National Research Council for Soundstage. It is the average output from 300 to 3000 Hz, to give some idea of how loud the speaker will sound to us at a given output level.

http://www.soundstagemagazine.com/measurements/test_loudspeakers.htm

The old audio magazine did not do sensitivity measurements but it was easy enough to look at the FR curve for 2.83 volts and get an good approximation.

Manufacturers' ratings are often quite optimistic, so it is best look at the measurements done by reviewers. Many manufacturers provide ratings which are pretty accurate, others overestimate--or perhaps they measure at only one frequency and pick a peak in the response.

There is another issue. One can measure sensitivity in an anechoic environment or pseudo-anechoic, which have the advantage of being standardized. Or one can measure it in a reverberant field, which will be somewhat higher. This can be argued is more like a typical home listening room. The disadvantage is that it cannot be compared directly to the the sensitivity of other speakers.

Some manufacturers like B & W, Paradigm, and PSB give an anechoic figure and a room figure.

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