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Flat, superficial sound?

Gerd Lommersum Gerd Lommersum,
Vifa Germany representative
Adviser to many manufacturers
Gerd Lommersum developed many fine speakers, like:
Quintadena 1, MPR 2 MXT, MPR 2 DAP-XT, Lagrange XT, Pascal ...

Technically perfect
but still a flat and boring sound?

Gerd Lommersum
interviewed by Peter Strassacker (7/2004)


Gerd, please tell us, when a loudspeaker shows a perfectly flat frequency response, but reproduces a sound that is boring and superficial. What's the cause? What can be done?

A listener perceives a loudspeaker with extremely flat frequency response as boring and superficial, when compared to differently tuned (with reduced midrange) speakers. The balance of a loudspeaker (described roughly as the ratio of bass - midrange - tops) may be shifted to a certain degree, without actually turning it into a better or worse speaker. Something can be done to ensure that the speaker appeals to the listener. Let's disregard room acoustics, otherwise it gets confusing) Usually, a sound balance with slight loudness is perceived to be more three-dimensional and more open. Therefore, the sound balance should be shifted towards a slight reduction of midrange.

Considering a typical 2 way speaker this can be done by increasing the longitudinal inductance before mid / bass driver by 20% - 30% (as a guidance). Simultaneously, the capacitor's value before the tweeter should be reduced equally.

As a result of these two changes the frequency response usually remains quite even, without any major drops, but with a slight mid reduction of 1 - 2 dB. Despite a rather small change the speaker sounds totally different with regard to balance and depth.

Thanks very much, Gerd.

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