Author Archive | Cathy Satin

Damaging your Speakers is Easy

If treated properly, speakers will work for decades although there can  be some wear and tear issues because they do have moving parts.  We get many perplexed customers with damaged speakers. How did it happen”  Common problems:

1-      Over or under powering. You can have a 1000 watt speaker, but if you use a 50 watt amp with the volume turned up higher that halfway, it will produce a square wave or clipping and it will be  the bad signal that damages the voice coil.

2-      Bad wiring: in the speaker cabinet, in the cabling to the speakers, from the amp, in the building- can all cause an intermittent signal and transients that can damage a speaker.

3-      Turning the amp on with the volume turned up- more transient damage

4-      Using outdoors. You cannot get the same volume from your speakers outside as you will inside. If you attempt to compensate by turning up the volume, you can go clip the signal. The techs at  Sweetwater have it right when they say “Outdoor gigs require at least 12dB (16x’s the power) more sound output than indoors, and as much as 20dB (100x’s power!) to really do it right.”

5-      Feedback at a high volume- causes one frequency to amplify for a long time overheating the voice coil

6-      Power surges- from the electric company,or as listed above: turning volume on with power up too high, intermittant cabling etc.

How Can We Help” We can recone your speakers or send you DIY recone kits. We can install new Diaphragms or send you replacement Diaphragms. We can repair your crossovers. We can handle any and all of your speaker repair needs. Let us know how we can help you.


What does a Frequency Response Curve mean

Frequency is the number of sound waves that pass a fixed receptor, your ear for example, in an established amount of time. This may also be called a cycle.

A hi-fidelity amplifier usually has a frequency response of 20 Hz to 20,000 Hz within approximately one dB. The human ear can normally detect audio frequencies encompassed by that specific range with a dB being the loudness or amplitude. The system should be able to amplify all the frequencies in that range.

The specific numbers indicated by the frequency response curve are not as important as the variation of response from frequency to frequency (e.g. high frequency to low frequency and vice versa). Acceptable frequency response, as plotted via the frequency response curve, doesn’t mean accurate sound reproduction, only that the tested component meets basic frequency response requirements. This response indicates to the tester that the component will accept an input signal and generate a response. The frequency response curve will not, however, define the actual audio quality.

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