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08-03-2009 Post mapped to one branch of Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 11270
Reply to: 11270
Battling stupid Horn Criticism as a concept
fiogf49gjkf0d

 Paul S wrote:
I never managed to come up with a horn that did not sound like a horn…

As many times I heard similar comments as many times I feel that people rather demonstrate own foolishness on the subject then express a sane opinion. Truly, since then the terminology “sounds like a horn” have become a derogatory characteristic and why “sounds like a horn” is worse then the “sounds like box”, or “sounds like open baffle”,  or  “sounds like a single driver”, or “sounds like electrostats”, or the “sound like port”?  I do not think that anybody with a listening audio IQ higher then today mortgage rate would deny that any loudspeaker topology has own auditable character. So, why the “sounds like a horn” gets such a bad reputation but “sounds like any other crap in audio” get nomination for the stupid audio gold medals and looks like a universal positive acclaim from audio public?

The answerer is the same as with many other audio subjects – the people’s superficiality and unawareness in the field, sponsored by brainless and ignorant propaganda by the industry. Badly made horn installations do have many troubles and the “sounds like a horn” is just one them. However, as many times you heard people toss the common “sounds like horn” judgment as many time you would NEVER heard those people provide a specific criticism about the nature of “horn sound”. People declare something as “horns sound” but it might imply a dozens of different characteristic. The horns critics NEVER looks distinctively ingot them. It is like if you have a pain in your liver and you go to a doctor saying “Doctor I am sick”.  Probably doctor would ask you to define what your complains are but you refuse to identify, insisting that you are generally sick. This attitude most likely would help neither to you nor to your doctor…

 The point that I am trying to make is that what people call “horns sound” is a derivative of VERY many reasons and without the identification of the specific negative characters of Sound there is no sensible criticism but only a demonstration of own listening ignorance. (Not to mention that majority of audio people are trained do not approach sound critical at all). The sweeping generalization “it sounds like horn” is absolutely not indicative and most of direct radiators for instance are not able to “sound like horn”.  Sit in orchestra and listen bras instruments. The trombones, French horns, trumpets, euphoniums, tubas, cornets, flugelhorns and many other instruments have specific harmonic colorations that are absolutely normal when you are in Symphony Hall but the very same colorations are recognized as the offensive “sounds like a horn” when it being plays via a playback. Listen the harmonics of life performing valveless brass instruments – you would hardly be able to find a direct radiator acoustic system that will be able to handle those tones. By saying it, do I imply that horn-loaded acoustic systems have any intrinsic inclinations for specific sounds? Absolutely not. I’m just saying that improperly and mistakably MADE horn-loaded installations has tendency to exhibit a common negative characteristics.

Let go back you my doctor example. You are complaining to your doctor without identifying what is wrong with you, the doctor did “something” and you died. Would it be a remote interest for anybody, at least for a people of medical profession, to express a curiosity about what was wrong with you and what the doctor did? Sure it might be a “simple” explanation: you were sick and you died. This explanation sound as intelligent as “it “sounds like a horn”. The fact that a live singing full-blown contralto singer in an open large hall has a lot of those “sounds like a horn” colorations in her voice seems dos not bother anybody. I know Boston Symphony Hall quite well and I can say that there are very many sitting locations in there were BSO has very much “honky sound” but it also seems does not bother anybody.

The point of all of it is to say that playback sounds in the way that reflects the perception of the playback architect and organizer. The stupid criticism that “it sounds like a horn” is not a criticism at all. If a person with a deep understanding of his sonic objectives will hear your complain about his payback that it was “sound like horn” then he would ask you “did it sound to you as what kind of horn?” Was it proper “horn sound”? Was it musically and sonically beneficial “horn sound”?  Did that “horn sound” exist inappropriately during some algorithmable inappropriate moments? Can you identify those moments tonally, dymickly or phraseologicaly? Was the amplitude and the accent of the “horn sound” altering with any other aspect of sound? Was the “horn sound” inclusive on the total sound of playback? What was misting from sound if you mentally remove the “horn sound” component? Is any specific characteristics of the given recording you might observe that makes you to feel that the playback has “horn sound”. Can you hear the “horn sound” over a playback when you play a regular person taking, like news on radio?  You can ask yourself those and many-many other questions and it will all bring you to a realization that there is good “horn sound” and there is a bad “horn sound”. The good “horn sound” and the bad “horn sound” is not a characteristic of horn-lording topology but it characteristic of the system organizer vision.

So, if you are experiencing a playback that floods listening space with the “brainless honk” then there is no need to blame in it the horn-loaded topology. All that you need is to inform the person who organize the playback that he did something wrong and that you are annoyed with honk and if you have expertise and the person deserves it then you might point out what specifically he did wrong with his playback. The “horn sound” has as much connection to the horn-loaded topology as the sound of resonating panels has connection to box loudspeakers. Sure many of box loudspeakers suffer from this problem but at the same time there are some that do not. It is not to mention that some loudspeakers are made intentionally to have very flimsy boxed and they sound very fine.

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Axel
South Africa
Posts 80
Joined on 07-18-2009

Post #: 2
Post ID: 11271
Reply to: 11270
Horn sound, why the 'abnormal' notice
fiogf49gjkf0d
Romy,
let me step up to the plate and get shot in the foot or what ever.
A lot of what you relate is of course right - BUT, 'where the is smoke - there is a fire" as the saying goes.
So, there must be a reason for this 'abnormal' notice of honking horns as compared to a "boxy" sounding speaker, etc.

I think it has to do with the much more efficient nature of horn speakers (acoustic impedance converter) and by this very nature a horn also amplifies errors more noticeable then say some 88dB box. I think horns are just known to do that much more easily (transmitting mistakes, being less forgiving) and so I guess many less acutely aware people may still notice if something doesn't sound quite right with a horn, but less so with a box speaker or foil and even a dipole.

Since the horn is emitting the sound it so happens to be blamed for everything that's not OK with the system. But IF something is amiss it seems to get converted into honkyness I.E. "it sounds like a horn".

It is easier for the ear to listen to a French-horn that doesn't quite do it with a box speaker, then to a honking piano from a horn, for instance. You are the expert, so why if a horn is not designed or set-up properly does it ALWAYS sound honky? It seems there is a small window for it to sound good / right whatever, but outside this VERY narrow window things then start to sound like a bloody PA system?!
I have heard some not so good box, dipole, foil speakers but the worst by far - if it goes wrong - (and often it does) is a horn sounding more suitable to call people on the beach to get out of the water (a PA system is just terribly offensive to the ears when pretending to play music, its actually phathetic, a joke, worse than a transistor clock radio, because it is so incredibly INTENSE).
Axel
08-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 3
Post ID: 11272
Reply to: 11271
I hate snakes.
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Axel wrote:
… why if a horn is not designed or set-up properly does it ALWAYS sound honky? It seems there is a small window for it to sound good / right whatever, but outside this VERY narrow window things then start to sound like a bloody PA system?!

Why you insist to handle poison snakes PROPERLY and you do not ask why a snakes bite you if stick your hand into the snake mouth? There are certain things that are as they are and one need to respect the order of the things. A person is perfectly within own rights to discard the things and try to get out horn what he want – shall we it blame the horn that the person was idiot and decided to give to the horn the mouth to mouth with that poison snake.  Of cause the snake bites and the horn threw all imaginary nastiness to it. Do not do stupid things and a horn will behave very obediently. Here are plenty on articles where I pointed out may aspects that might lead to different type of honky distortion or to whatever else the call “horns sound”. Some people get fixated on those problems and some seems do not see the problem as a factor at all. Sure there are those who abscessed with discovery how to stick an arm and a let into a cobra mouth and how to go away from it alive.  Well, I have no interest in it and I am in a different “hobby”…

The Cat
 


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,052
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 4
Post ID: 11276
Reply to: 11272
Immunity or Picking the Poison?
fiogf49gjkf0d

Can we start with a given that different people will care more or less about different "stray" aspects of sound, what to play up and what to play down?  I get that people dig horns, and I have absolutely no problem with it.  My question was from a purely practical perspective, based on very limited experience and total failure, just as stated in the post.  Romy, I actually found your response to be enlightening, since, indeed, I did have a rather different perspective when I was into the horns, and some of the question does "come from that time".  But your "twist" of the question does make plenty of sense, taken alone, or taken as a more evolved perspective.

Anyway... I actually thought there was some common recognition of "horn sound", just like there might be about OB sound or BR sound, which is to say, qualities that are endemic to the genre.  For instance, although I recognize and do not like certain "sound qualities" of BR itself, I have tried but failed to overcome them all.  So I soldier on with the "benefit" I get while still mindful of (and not liking) the "soft bottom" (although I have overcome the "chuffing"). 

By "horn sound" I mean when all instruments and voices in a given frequency range sound as if they went through a smaller or larger megaphone (horn).  Basically, more of less, like talking through cupped hands, depending on the frequency in question, ie, the sound is thereby "shaped" in a generic sense that has been, in my experience, peculiar to horns.  And all the big ones I have heard have had this characteristic in spades (ie, the sewer pipe).  But I can say just how I tuned and "dealt with" the BR soft bottom, by design and allowed-for adjustment.  So I was just wondering if anyone tried to "deal with" the horn shaping, or what, and if so, how they did it, since horn people do not seem to talk about it.  If I understood Dominik correctly, he expects to do the math, make the horns, and just assemble and use the result, without ongoing modifications.  This surprises me.

Best regards,
Paul S

08-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 5
Post ID: 11277
Reply to: 11276
The people who look at the horn subjects superficially...
fiogf49gjkf0d

 Paul S wrote:
Can we start with a given that different people will care more or less about different "stray" aspects of sound, what to play up and what to play down?

It is incorrect.  If you look deeper then you will discover that there is no different perception of "stray" aspects of sound. The whole evolution of musical culture is based upon it.

 Paul S wrote:
By "horn sound" I mean when all instruments and voices in a given frequency range sound as if they went through a smaller or larger megaphone (horn).  Basically, more of less, like talking through cupped hands, depending on the frequency in question, ie, the sound is thereby "shaped" in a generic sense that has been, in my experience, peculiar to horns. 

And what you just say is exactly what I was standing against in my initial post of the thread. You attribute the random and irrelevant results of methodologically incorrect experiment do define an alien topological characteristic.  The cupped hands do have characteristics distortions but it has absolutely nothing to do with horns as a topology. The cupped hands always overloaded with LF, severally EQ to the ears of the person who speakes through  the cupped hands and the sourse is severally distorted by the oppression of leaps by the hands. Ironically those are 3 most common mistakes that Morons who have no idea what they hear do with horns.

If you load 155 tons of weight on a horn’s back than she would probably not only die but will be converted into a sheet of meet. So, in your association with horn you state that a horse can not care weight on her back. I just find this logic irrational and damn. I do not exactly argue this point with you, Paul – you do nothing with horns practically and your position about the subject is not very relevant. I just use your quote without asking your copyright release as the very same oponeon might be expressed by many other people who look at the horn subjects superficially.

Rgs, the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-03-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,052
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 6
Post ID: 11278
Reply to: 11277
If To Look Deeper
fiogf49gjkf0d
Great answer, thanks, I get it, although the embedded logic is hardly limited to horns.

But I still want to know whether -  and if so, then how -  people are dealing with throat sizes and horn profiles during development, since no one mentions it specifically, and some, apparently, see no need for it.  If this question is also irrelevant, I would be pleased to know why.


Best regards,
Paul S
08-04-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Axel
South Africa
Posts 80
Joined on 07-18-2009

Post #: 7
Post ID: 11279
Reply to: 11278
Great answer still pending...
fiogf49gjkf0d

Paul,
I'm with you waiting for a bit more enlightenment and less rhetoric on the subject. As you stated if e.g. a Bass reflex does certain things wrong there are some known 'recipes' / fixes to try, and some will work.
We would want to utilize a upper bass horn in our next project but I'm afraid this might not work out properly with maths and rhetoric alone.
 
Of course we could opt for the “long cut” do the maths, and go through the hole witch-craft, try, fiddle, and patch to exhaustion and end up where you got so far.
Not a very promising notion.
As I said earlier, boxy sound, standing waves in enclosures, port chuffing, lack of black-hole wave launch, leaking enclosure, ~ wrong port resonance, and, and, and, can be fixed to a ‘reasonable degree’.  (Romy I guess would call it ‘fixed’ only good for Audio-Moron TM)
If a horn sounds like a PA system I think you can fix NOTHING but chuck it, and make another one.
And again a horn either works (I do hope so) or it doesn’t work AT ALL, and then it can sound offensive to the highest degree that any other type of transducer can simply not match – at least in my experience.
So the question is: Does one actually want to play with such ‘poison snakes’?
Answer: Well, -- curiosity killed the cat.
Axel
08-04-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 8
Post ID: 11284
Reply to: 11279
My site requires you to do some homework.
fiogf49gjkf0d
Axel,

The “understanding” at my site require a little more then a typical for audio people submission yourself to “tell what to do” type of lip-service.  I am individualist in Audio and I expect individualism from others.  I expect others do not subscribe what I say but rather others to engage the subject on their own and demonstrate with their “understanding” a stipulated level of the subject’s awareness. If your interest was more specific and more practical then you would discover that behind of all of my “general rhetoric” there is much more applied empirical specificity that you could wish, or that you might consume now. My site implies you to do some your own homework or at least a familiarity with tone of information that was posted before.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-05-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Axel
South Africa
Posts 80
Joined on 07-18-2009

Post #: 9
Post ID: 11285
Reply to: 11284
Re: If To Look Deeper... and “understanding”
fiogf49gjkf0d
Romy,
you did not disappoint my expectation in your reply. Who can argue with the take: "bugger off and do some home-work"?
On the other hand, when looking through that "Knowledge tree TM" it's more of a "forest" as far as horns are concerned. So it's a bit like "not seeing the trees for the forest". Take this as the back ground to my “tell me what to do” question...

So, I guess it'll be back to some trial and error as with all the other stuff we been up to.
So let me try it like this ---- your answers might, or might be not buried in the horn "knowledge forest".

1) What is your experience between different materials used for an upper-bass-horn (i.e. bass horn = steel armoured concrete...)?
Can it be related to what one can hear with box speakers, e.g. propensity to ~ 300Hz res. frequency with MDF, and other 'similar' material related signatures of the materials used?

2) Since the horn throat may be smaller, I.E. membrane diameter of the driver only (excluding surround), the surround material (rubber, foam, textile, etc.) would impart (far?) less of it's signature on the sound, or is your experience suggesting otherwise?

3) Have you found Kapton or fibre-glass voice-coil formers with alu-voice-coil wire the preferred material (due to reduced membrane/drive weight) or is copper wire showing a more preferred signature (warmer?), because all is multiple times acoustically amplified by the horn?

4) Where is the horn's mass in your experience best located, heavier, thicker (damped!) horn, or e.g. cast-iron (heavy and self damped) type rear chamber with lighter horn materials in front?

5) The driver(s) you used,  seem out of production by now, have you any other 8" drivers found suitable?

6) Could you find an 'efficient' step-by-step process in deriving at horn profile(s) by some predetermined process of knowledge-based elimination of unsuitable profiles?

If your answers are buried in the "horn knowledge forest" you will tell me I guess, and I shall endeavour to do some more digging then...




08-05-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 10
Post ID: 11286
Reply to: 11285
Ho do not create the “forest”
fiogf49gjkf0d

Axel,

This is a thread dedicated to battling stupid rhetoric about Horn Criticism. There is no need to highjack the plot of the thread with your questions about specifics of your project. The reason why people “can’t find anything” is because they do stay on the subject of thread…

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-05-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Axel
South Africa
Posts 80
Joined on 07-18-2009

Post #: 11
Post ID: 11287
Reply to: 11286
Any guidance...,
fiogf49gjkf0d
where my post should be placed with some better subject correlation?

I recall, at least at some stage you moved a post to where YOU thought it be in an more appropriate place.

Axel
08-05-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
eduardo
Posts 9
Joined on 04-17-2009

Post #: 12
Post ID: 11292
Reply to: 11270
It shoud be sounding like a horn
fiogf49gjkf0d
Battling horn criticism is the very same thing that battling audio superficiality, lack of serious criteria about audio and ignorance about
the phisics and geometry  involved. The really annoying thing is that audioworld was ,in his early developement, more consistent
that it is now. May be  there were scientific concepts working, while now there is just snobysm and "marketingwise"
"scientific arguments" . This way you can never get the knowledge and understand things.

And the key here , the starting point  to  develop some kind of solid Knowledge is....... abscence of nonsense, love for authentic
understanding of things. And my friends i believe that you dont see too much of it nowadays in audio. I must say that the high end audio went too
high to be real and became exibitionism of unknowleadgable science.Very sad.


If someone is truly involved in audio,then  must know , or come to the conclusion that even without hearing one, horns are by default the better "structure"
to get sound in the way sound propagates trough the air (within its own bandwidth). If you are not familiar with basics of geometry and phisics enough
to understand such a basics then nothing can be done.

 I just cant believe that every audio person just ignore the fact that (Theoretically) the best possible device to get sound from ,should be  a horn and a
mechanical  vivrating needle attached to it if we compare it to complexity  of obtaining the very same waves from a direct radiator,
in terms "wave integrity"phisycs (always conceptually speaking).

The thing is not "sounds like a horn"  , but   "It should be sounding like a horn"

Regards
Eduardo
08-05-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 13
Post ID: 11293
Reply to: 11292
Knowledge about hors vs. knowledge about horns.
fiogf49gjkf0d
I do not completely agree with you. You see, I do not feel that stressing of “physics and geometry“or “scientific concepts” leads to anywhere. In fact I generally do not feel that knowledge itself worth a lot. I value much more a presence of a common sense and a proper pattern to develop necessary knowledge if there is a need for them. That is why when I sometimes do interviews of personal to hire for my clients I hardly ever ask questions that require knowledge but I rather tend to ask the questions that they are absolutely do not know and that have no firm single answer but rather have zillion answers “depends”.  What important to me is not the fact the person would find or guess the answers/s among the baggage of own knowledge but to see what kind mental mechanism the person would use to approach the answer.  I usually ask to interviewee to talk for a few minutes about what the person thinks about the answer might be and observing the level of the candidate’s considerations it is immediately obviously to me at whish level the person might engage the tasks.

The very same is with horns. There are very many people with tone of what they feel “knowledge” is about horns (or about audio) but in reality their application of that knowledge worth shit. The truth is that the horns are so superbly simplistic to understand and so simplistic to use that a word “knowledge” is hardly ever applicable to them – juts do not do stupid things and you do not need any “knowledge”.

Do you know what the most common question I ask in emails? The Morons read some my positions at my site and then send me emails asking “How do I know?” I always wonder what the heck then would like to hear as the answer.  They are inapt to recognize my (or even their own) motivation, rational and resonating but they want an assurance of orientation, like I am selling them a car or something like this… I use to reply Larry Flint’s celebrated phrase “A Samurai told me” but lately I just send them to go fuck themselves… I do not like them interrupt me from writing my book “How to make friends 101”…

by Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
08-06-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
jessie.dazzle


Paris, France
Posts 456
Joined on 04-23-2006

Post #: 14
Post ID: 11297
Reply to: 11272
The nature of the beast
fiogf49gjkf0d
As I've said before, I consider myself a beginner. I'll try to bear that in mind as I write this, but it would be wrong to say that I have not amassed some experience on the subject. That experience would have me believe that most don't invest the time necessary to get to know, or simply stop short of meeting the requirements of what is really a supremely capable beast.
 
Romy wrote :
 
"...Why you insist to handle poison snakes PROPERLY and you do not ask why a snakes bite you if stick your hand into the snake mouth? There are certain things that are as they are and one need to respect the order of the things. A person is perfectly within own rights to discard the things and try to get out horn what he want – shall we it blame the horn that the person was idiot and decided to give to the horn the mouth to mouth with that poison snake.  Of cause the snake bites and the horn threw all imaginary nastiness to it. Do not do stupid things and a horn will behave very obediently..."
 
I find this poisonous snake analogy particularly well-chosen.
 
Some tools, like some beings, are capable of extraordinary feats; this quality is invariably "bundled with" other qualities; qualities that dictate use-of or contact-with said tool or being be met with an understanding and respect of certain requirements. It is wrong to expect that such tools or beings perform as desired under any other circumstances. Typically, the need to commit to meeting these requirements is directly proportional to the level of specialization of the tool or being in question.
 
Certain large corporations understand this, but they are extremely rare.
 
A better example might be the CIA; consider that when they need to get some really dirty work done, they rely on a toolbox constituted essentially of a network of very specialized beings, AND INTERFACING OPERATIVES THAT UNDERSTAND HOW TO HANDLE THEM (who themselves I'd imagine, can only just hold down a normal office job).
 
Consider women: How many do you know that are smoking hot to look at, true goers in the sack, faithful, and easy to live with? It just doesn't happen (i'm talking true goers here); conditions must be met. 
 
The examples are endless; it may as well be a law of nature; there appear to be no shortcuts, it is not open for negotiation, and can be altered by no amount of cash. 

So what do you really want?
 
Getting back to audio, until something better comes along, horns remain, in theory, the most capable of all end-of-chain audio output devices. In practice, and in keeping with afore-mentioned "law", it is to be expected that they require that one be informed of, and willing to submit to certain basic requirements. It would be fair to say that some of these requirements can be more than daunting, especially when addressing the lower frequencies.
 
In response to Axel: If you are serious about your project and have any hope at all, you have already felt what I am about to write : Consider checking your ego at the door, and taking advantage of an enlightening walk through "the forest"; remembering that mother nature too can appear cruel, irrational, and even cryptic at first view. It is entirely normal that the secret to life not be carved there in the bark of every tree trunk, in one's mother tongue. For my part, I have not found a more directly applicable compilation of information on the subject of horns, than the ongoing pursuit chronicled right here. 
 
With that, I look forward to learning of your successful results.

jd*


How to short-circuit evolution: Enshrine mediocrity.
08-06-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Axel
South Africa
Posts 80
Joined on 07-18-2009

Post #: 15
Post ID: 11298
Reply to: 11297
Not for beginners...
fiogf49gjkf0d

Hi jd*
thank you for caring, and encouraging me to wade through all of this horn info.
I'm 63 by now, not sure if I'll ever get out of there alive before I'm done though...

Romy posted some picture about a commercial horn (Western Electric WE15) that has -some- merit for him (note the fond size).

Very well, a picture says a 1000 words, I like it --- also it gives some perspective about this here endeavour to boot. Also when I'm told that horns are actually very simple, and I'm just one more Moron who has not figured that yet.
This leaves me with the question, why the need to get lost in the 'forest' in the first place?
This horn subject does not give me sufficient 'excitations' I’m afraid, I was just looking for some practical inputs like: all (99%) of horns suck, are actually very simple to understand, etc. --- good stuff.
A very good position to start from. Next of course this here local horn expert (he also got it simple going) tells us mid-base (mind you, not upper...) NEEDS 15" driver minimum, and 8" driver for upper-bass sucks… hm.
To keep it short now, we just gonna start our mid-bass horn project based on our own premises, and then listen to the results (good to know it is simple, also being -very intelligent persons- should help). Same we done with our box-speakers.

Cheers,
Axel
08-07-2009 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
eduardo
Posts 9
Joined on 04-17-2009

Post #: 16
Post ID: 11309
Reply to: 11293
Horns are not a problem
fiogf49gjkf0d
I do not completely agree with you. You see, I do not feel that stressing of “physics and geometry“or “scientific concepts” leads to anywhere. In fact I generally do not feel that knowledge itself worth a lot. I value much more a presence of a common sense and a proper pattern to develop necessary knowledge if there is a need for them


I know what you mean. Yes, the important thing is  the common sense, anyway.
 
 
That is why when I sometimes do interviews of personal to hire for my clients I hardly ever ask questions that require knowledge but I rather tend to ask the questions that they are absolutely do not know and that have no firm single answer but rather have zillion answers “depends”.  What important to me is not the fact the person would find or guess the answers/s among the baggage of own knowledge but to see what kind mental mechanism the person would use to approach the answer
 
Absolutely. You are analyzing people here.
 
But If you want to reach objectives and do the things,  knowledge ,  comprehension of things , conceptual thinking ,science, are necessary elements to work with. It is not a matter of knowing a lot , but a matter of being able of knowing for yourself helped with a kind of personal  set of “scientific” or “obcjective” knowledge.
 
Anyway ,within a certain intelectual and humanistic level of tasks, you have to be a kind of "consistent,common sensed,analitical kind of person" if you know what I mean; You cant be a “higend audio”  kind of guy.

What i mean is kind of :  If you dont realize first what a horn obcjectively is, then you are thinking in a prejudice basis. Scientific knowledge let you advance secure,
although in fact  it is your “vision of things” the decisive element, your intuition,your understanding.
 

Do you know what the most common question I ask in emails? The Morons read some my positions at my site and then send me emails asking “How do I know?”
 

I am aware of this kind of questions. People who truly wants to know, must ask themselves first about “how I dont know” instead of asking others “how do you know”.
Problem here must be that understanding and sensibility at the same time are necessary elements to develop some kind of “interesting or objectived sound”  and be able to understand much of  the ideas expressed within this site. 
  
 
Regards
 
Eduardo
11-21-2012 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
rowuk


Germany
Posts 210
Joined on 07-05-2012

Post #: 17
Post ID: 18755
Reply to: 11293
Simple is often the hardest thing to understand
fiogf49gjkf0d
I am really enjoying myself here at Romys site. I like the idea of someone documenting their efforts in a very (self) critical way.

I think that anyone solving issues in a methodical way uses similar techniques. They all involve stripping the problem of its symptoms to find out what the root cause for the phenomenon is and then creating a plan based on the root instead of the symptoms.

In the case of horns, I think that most fail to see that it is a simple band pass device. I am a trumpet player and my instrument demonstrates very clearly that there is a lowest and highest note with an acceptable trumpet sound and that at the top end, the response rolls off requiring extra "effort" if we want to use that range. The same applies to audio horns. The criticism of something having a horn sound is like accusing blueberries of being blue (limited color frequency bandwidth) or women of having a period once a month. It has been often written that horns are "decade" devices (500-5kHz/1000-10Khz/100-1KHz). This very adequately explains what we can expect. Applying a high and low pass filter to a standard speaker driver creates a similar "honk", albeit with much higher distortion for a given loudness.

If we measure driver frequency response and then measure again attached to various sized horns, we see the "simple" band pass effect change based on the horn size and geometry. We also see the directivity change outside of the pass band. So, simple logic says that if we can leverage the band pass capabilities in a predictable and repeatable way, we may be able to reduce the complexity of the audio chain elsewhere.

I read the comment about honky PA speakers. Well, I have fixed the honk on many just by leveraging the band pass effects. That involved changing the crossover to match the characteristics of the horn. It is clear to most people that a 2" woofer will have limited bass and predictable distortion based on acustic output. With a bit of reading and listening , it can become equally clear that a 12" mouth horn regardless of driver will be challenged to create sounds under 1000Hz (or above 10KHz) without comprimise.

So, the next time honk becomes apparent, don't blame the horn - it is not "flawed", it simply what it is.


Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
11-21-2012 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,283
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 18
Post ID: 18756
Reply to: 18755
Live music honk vs. pure audio honk
fiogf49gjkf0d

 rowuk wrote:
In the case of horns, I think that most fail to see that it is a simple band pass device.

Yes, this is as simple as that.

 rowuk wrote:
Applying a high and low pass filter to a standard speaker driver creates a similar "honk", albeit with much higher distortion for a given loudness.

Well, yes and no. Applying a high and low pass filter to a standard speaker driver creates a different "honk". However, as I can see it honk is not a problem itself. With wrongly used horn honk might be a problem but we need to differentiate between good honk and bad honk. It is hard to explain it in words. I in fact very much welcoming honk in my playback but it is very different honk then the honk that many people get in audio what they run full-range across little horn and use a driver with overly-substantial diaphragm. Life sound has plenty of honk and it bothers no one. I think in audio horns we create a fear of honk but it is very different honk. The nasal sound of life music is wonderful, it has nasal character but that character does not hamper tonal characteristic of sound and does not restrict dynamics. Listen a lower octave honk of contrabassoon or bass bass saxophone - it is sensational honk. Audio honk has absolutely nothing to do with the sensational honk of live music. The Audio honk terminate dynamics, tone and it is juts side effect of improperly operating electro-mechanical system

 rowuk wrote:
So, the next time honk becomes apparent, don't blame the horn - it is not "flawed", it simply what it is.

Disagree. Honk in audio horn is not what it is but always a sigh of improper use. Musical honk that was created by live instrument that is passing through the audio horns has a coplitly different feeling than just the audio honk.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
11-22-2012 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
be
Copenhagen, Denmark
Posts 86
Joined on 02-12-2007

Post #: 19
Post ID: 18758
Reply to: 18755
Horny sound is a bit more complecated than bandpass effects.
fiogf49gjkf0d

Horns are of course some kind of band pass filters with different kind of ripples at lover cutoff and beaming at upper cut off, according to horn type.

Maybe it should be added that contributing to the horn sound idea, is that the sound also depends on the material of the horn wall, flutes for instance are made of either, brass, silver or gold with a reason other than cosmetics.

Then there are flutter echo like bathroom sounds that horns also sometime produce, especially if they have a glossy surface.

11-23-2012 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
rowuk


Germany
Posts 210
Joined on 07-05-2012

Post #: 20
Post ID: 18759
Reply to: 18758
Material is not specific enough
fiogf49gjkf0d
 be wrote:

Horns are of course some kind of band pass filters with different kind of ripples at lover cutoff and beaming at upper cut off, according to horn type.

Maybe it should be added that contributing to the horn sound idea, is that the sound also depends on the material of the horn wall, flutes for instance are made of either, brass, silver or gold with a reason other than cosmetics.

The material in acoustic instruments is manufactured in a different way. The mass of the instrument is very low compared to the acoustic power. Generally the instruments have braces - some to conduct sound - like with a feedback loop, other braces damp sound. Also the material is hardened and annealed during the construction process. This shapes the overtone series and thus the timbre. Eve as the instruments get older, the vibration during playing changes the temper (hardness) of the material. The sound changes/matures like a good wine. Speakers are built more massive compared to the acoustic output power. They are often built from a much lossier material with much less change over age too.

Different materials in wind instruments help the player find a sound that better matches what is in their heads. This reduces the amount of energy required to become "one" with the instrument and thus frees up energy for the creative process. In the hands of a weak player, material considerations are generally not audible/useful.

 be wrote:

Then there are flutter echo like bathroom sounds that horns also sometime produce, especially if they have a glossy surface.


Properly designed Horns used within a sensible pass band are too short for any type of "flutter". Flutter type echos need to be out of the early reflection period (>20ms) for our ears to do anything with them. Our brain has no resolution for early reflections - they simply confuse the moment by changing our perception of pitch, sonic color and location of the sound. This is well documented in much of the audio engineer literature. The worst that could happen on a badly designed horn working out of the proper pass band would be cancellation due to phase effects/standing waves in the horn. This would be most audible on horns that are too short or with improper termination at the mouth. Due to the improper termination, a part of the sound is reflected back into the horn (desirable for resonant wind instruments) and sets up a standing wave that has NOTHING to do with the hardness or gloss of the surface.
I think that there is a big misunderstanding when it comes to wave propagation. The soundwaves in fact move at very high speed, the air molecules are essentially standing still. Sound is passed by one air molecule bumping into the next - the stationary air does not care if a surface is hard, neither does the sound wave. If the horn contour is used in a way not complementary to its contour/length, reflections can cause phase/amplitude artifacts. I have heard fine sounding hard glossy horns. My own research has actually confirmed to me that absorption/diffraction is generally useful when you are trying to correct for bad design and less necessary when the design is good.

When it comes to controlling the last couple of % of sound quality, we need a reference, as different can but must not be better or worse. It just depends on the manipulation of the artisan. There are so many things happening in any acoustic instance that it is difficult to say with certainty what causes a specific audible artifact.


Whenever I feel blue, I start breathing again.
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