Magazine article Gramophone

The Ability of the Audio Industry to Keep Reinventing and Refining Its Technology Would Seem to Know No Limits: Linn and Bang & Olufsen Prove That Well-Established Technologies Still Have Scope for New Materials, New Designs and New Thinking

Magazine article Gramophone

The Ability of the Audio Industry to Keep Reinventing and Refining Its Technology Would Seem to Know No Limits: Linn and Bang & Olufsen Prove That Well-Established Technologies Still Have Scope for New Materials, New Designs and New Thinking

Article excerpt

You'd have thought that by now every possible twist on loudspeakers would have been explored. After all, the basic design has been unchanged for many decades, involving one or more drive units in an 'infinite baffle' box, designed to stop energy from the rear of the drivers sneaking round and interfering with that coming from the front.

However, it seems there's still almost infinite scope for tinkering with this classic layout and the technology it uses. This month's review of the Focal Aria 926 speakers, for example, reveals the use of flax fibres in making the driver cones--a traditional material given a very modern twist.

What's more, a couple of visits I paid recently showed me that the ability of the audio industry to keep reinventing its technology seemingly knows no limits: both companies I visited showed developments concerning their speaker technology, and both are aiming not just at better sound but at improved convenience for the user.

The first visit was to Linn--just celebrating its 40th anniversary with a limited edition version of its classic LP12 turntable but also with something else to talk about: Exakt. The Exakt system takes the technology of its DSM streaming products to a whole new level with the introduction of the Klimax Exakt DSM and Klimax Exakt 250 speakers, connected with a single digital cable.

In the speakers is the Exakt Engine technology, which can not only optimise the speakers for the size and shape of your listening room, the furnishing and where the speakers are placed, but even ensure perfect operation of the drive units within the speakers themselves. That's individual drive units, not just a type of driver: every drive unit is measured in production and its parameters stored, so the speaker 'knows' of any minor deviations from the ideal specification--all within usual production tolerances, of course --and can compensate. If you have a problem and need to change a driver, the system will readjust itself for the new unit.

It is some way from conventional automatic set-up systems of the kind you find in AV receivers, using a microphone and a set of test-tones: Linn describes its system as having a human basis, in that the speakers are first set up to give the best possible sound by ear, entering in parameters such as room size and shape, and then can be moved to the positions where domestic harmony demands, the system readjusting to optimise the sound. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.