Using the Right Loudspeakers

The quality of the loudspeaker determines the sound quality in the case of an acoustically well-designed room. Again, the room is not able to correct the performance of a poor loudspeaker.

Different frequency ranges (low, mid, high) should be delivered by different speakers due to avoid degraded sound quality, especially in the low frequencies. Therefore, a full-range loudspeaker (one diaphragm) is always a compromise and not recommended.

Front Loudspeakers

In home theaters, front loudspeakers (L, C, R) are mainly used to deliver the speech content of a movie. This requires the sound to be localized among the entire listening area which will be achieved by well-reproduced direct sounds within a horizontal angular range of ±30◦ from conventional wide dispersion cone loudspeakers.

Center channel

A center loudspeaker covering the intermediate image between a stereo configuration can improve the perceived sound notably if a broader listening sweet spot is desired. A center channel also improves the sound quality with no acoustical crosstalk.

Figure 1: Stereo loudspeaker arrangement (a) with two (b) and three loudspeakers.

Figure 1. (a) illustrates the situation of a phantom center image and (b) with an additional center loudspeaker. In (a) the left and right loudspeakers radiate identical sounds.

Sound quality suffers due to acoustical crosstalk and the intermediate sound image tends to drift backward, behind the line of the left and right loudspeaker. The drift backward seems to be reasonable since the impression of distance is dependent on early reflections, which cover a longer distance until arriving at the listener.

Figure 4.2 (b) shows only two remaining reflections with improved sound quality. Nevertheless, Choisel found that a discrete center speaker causes less perceived spaciousness, listener envelopment, and a smaller apparent source width compared to a phantom center image.

Conclusion

In conclusion, a discrete center loudspeaker has pros and cons but in surround sound where listener envelopment is created by the surround speakers, it will not be necessary for the center channel to contribute to lateral reflections. However, in a solo performance, this might not apply. A compromise has to be found.

In this post, we explained Using the Right Loudspeakers; Other types of these methods that need to be mentioned to improve the sound will be published in future posts. These will pave the way for creating a home theater of the highest quality.

Although, we explored two types of sound absorbers that are effective in controlling sound reflections; Other types of these absorbers and the things that need to be mentioned to improve the sound will be published in future posts. These will pave the way for creating a home theater of the highest quality.

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