Loudspeaker engineering : How to design speaker crossovers
What you'll learn
- Design 2-way and 3 way crossovers
- Achieve linear frequency response
- Align the speaker drivers in phase
- Pick the right components for audio applications
- Basics on electrical engineering
- How to assemble a crossover board
- Learn basic soldering
- Basic knowledge about electrical circuits.
- Finished Acoustics 101 course.
- Finished acoustics 201 course.
Design you own speaker crossover
This course is the last piece in the loudspeaker design process. You will learn how to use the FRD and ZMA files (check Acoustics 201 course) to design 2-way and 3-way crossovers. These designs will be done in XSim which is a free application. Crossover design, while it does have some general guidelines, it's unique for every crossover. For this reason, 5 different types of enclosures have been built for this course : two 2-way bass reflex bookshelf speakers, a 3-way bass reflex, a sealed MTM and a 3-way bass reflex floorstanding speaker with dual woofers. This way you will get a better understanding on how the process works. It takes not only knowledge, but also intuition and experience when designing a crossover.
Specific circuits for crossover design
Besides the basic filtering for speakers (1st order, 2nd order, etc), there are other circuits which are implemented to correct the frequency and the phase response of the system. Since we have 5 examples to play with, we have enough crossover projects to go through most of these in a practical way. To mention some of the circuits : impedance equalization circuit, attenuation pad, baffle step compensation, ladder delay network, notch filter, and more.
Testing the new crossovers
Designing a crossover on your computer is convenient but we will also test it out. I have a large amount of electrical components, capacitors, inductors and resistors, from small to large values. After we design the crossover in XSim, we will assemble a prototype crossover and check how it measures and how it sounds. Some tips and tricks on how to make your life easier and what to avoid when building a prototype.
Building a crossover network
Building a crossover network will require some handy work. You will need to be aware of the size and material of the board, how and where you place your components. What will you use to fix the components to the board. How to make sure the components won't rattle about. Unavoidably you will acquire some basic soldering skills as well.
At the end of this course, and by taking the previous 2 courses as well, you will be able to fully design from scratch your own multi-way loudspeaker.
Who this course is for:
- DIY-ers who want to make multi-way loudspeakers
- Audiophiles who want to learn how to make their own custom crossover
- Those who want to extend their knowledge about electro-acoustics.
Hi! My name is Marius and I'm from Romania. I majored in economics and computer science, and have a college and masters degree in this field. Regarding the audiophile part of me, I started to intensely study this area since several years ago. It’s difficult to get a college degree in this field, since there are only a few universities around the world which have this specialization (from what I know, In Europe, there is a famous one in Denmark, and another in UK). The closest specialization would be electrical engineering, but I wanted something a bit more specific. So instead of going abroad for studies, I decided to study at home in my free time. The things I find important or interesting I write them down on my blog. Here is a list of books I have read, some of them even twice or three times :
1. Master Handbook of Acoustics by F. Alton Everest, Ken Pohlmann (McGraw Hill Professional, 2009)
2. Introduction to Sound System Design and Electro-Acoustics by Peter Swarte (DHvV Interactive Lab, 2014)
3. Audio Engineering Explained by Douglas Self (Taylor & Francis, 2012)
4. Electroacoustics by Mendel Kleiner (CRC Press, 2013)
5. The Audio Expert: Everything You Need to Know About Audio by Ethan Winer (Focal Press, 2012)
6. Electroacoustic Devices: Microphones and Loudspeakers 1st Edition by Glen Ballou (Focal Press, 2009)
7. The Complete Guide to High-End Audio 5th Edition by Robert Harley (Acapella Publishing, 2015)
8. Introduction to Loudspeaker Design: Second Edition by John L. Murphy (True Audio, 2014)
9. Sound Reproduction: The Acoustics and Psychoacoustics of Loudspeakers and Rooms 1st Edition by Floyd Toole, (Focal Press, 2008)
10. Basic Electricity (Dover Books on Electrical Engineering) 2nd Edition by Bureau of Naval Personnel (Dover Publications, 1970)
11. Distortion: The Cause Of Harmonics And The Lie Of THD by Dan P. Bullard (CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2015)
12. Audio Engineer's Reference Book 2nd Edition by Michael Talbot-Smith (Focal Press, 2001)
13. Loudspeaker and Headphone Handbook 3rd Edition by John Borwick (Focal Press, 2001)
14. Loudspeaker Design Cookbook 7th Edition by Vance Dickason (Audio Amateur Pubns, 2005)
15. How to Build Speaker Enclosures by Alexis Badmaieff and Don Davis (Howard W. Sams & Co, 1966)
16. Making Sense of Sound by Alvis J. Evans (Prompt Publications, 1992)
17. Designing, Building, and Testing Your Own Speaker System with Projects 4th Edition by David Weems (McGraw-Hill Education TAB, 1996)
18. Testing Loudspeakers by Joseph D'Appolito (Audio Amateur Pubns,1998)
19. Speaker Building 201: A Comprehensive Course in Speaker Design by Ray Alden (Audio Amateur Pubns, 2004)
20. Loudspeaker Recipes: Book 1 : Four Two-Way Systems by Vance Dickason (Audio Amateur Pubns, 1994)
21. The Sound Reinforcement Handbook 2nd Edition by Gary Davis and Ralph Jones (Yamaha, 1988)
The difficult part Is making sense of all the information from a text book, since there is no mentor to guide you. There is a lot of study to be done, when you have a question that needs answering. Hopefully, the courses I’m about to publish, will save you from this ordeal and give you concentrated and easy to digest information.