They are closer than you think. Well, actually, they are already here, but I’m thinking of one specifically, Bohdan Raczynski’s Soundeasy software. Most of you know this as one of the more common programs available to the DIY’r to measure, design and build loudspeakers. Now, BR is working towards making a digital xover.
Why is this such a great idea? Well, think about the typical workflow associated with building a speaker.
Conceptualization–>Build cabinet–>Measure drivers–>Import result into modeling program–>Order passive parts–>build physical crossover–>Remeasure–>Adjust components.
Then, keep iterating the last two steps until measurements and sound agree and meet the goal.
Now, with a decent PC providing the computing power the workflow is simplified, and made more powerful as well.
Conceptualization–>Build cabinet–>Measure drivers–>Import result into modeling program–>Use standalone equalizer.
No passive parts. No repeated iteration with additional passive parts since you can just modify your system on the fly. And, you get the benefit of dsp equalization of almost any irregularity, phase as well as FR.
For example, think of the Usher 8945P. It has an awe-inspiring motor, but a quirky edge resonance that causes a pretty significant dip, marring what would otherwise be a giant killer. Passively, this is hard to correct. With something like Soundeasy’s Ultimate equalizer, this is trivial to fix.
It does require a compatible soundcard and an available PC, as well as a multichannel amp. However, you’d never have to build another passive xover again.
Anyway, I paypal’d BR and am looking forward to this. I’m now motivated to put a few speakers on the baffle.
Even if you don’t want to design speakers, hopefully the setup will let me save a file and post it on the net. You just have to buy and build the unit, and buy a SE along with a standalone equalizer module.
Now if BR is in a moneymaking mood, maybe…he could have an SE upgrade that wound generate a specific UE file to only function with a particular design. Anyone requesting that design would have to email BR for a key in order for it to work.
That is, let’s say you want to copy my RS28F/MCM waveguide/SS15m/xls 3 way. I generate a specific UE standalone file that will only work for this setup. When I generate this, it would require a key. You email BR, send him $25, and voila! You have a specific UE that works with your setup only. Even if somehow you hacked this, BR’s loss would be small, since the UE only would work for than design.
Nifty, huh! Instead of getting just $25 from SE users, every builder out there who uses a crossover based on SE’s UE gives BR $25 per design. It’s not that steep really, if you’re spending $500 on drivers and nothing on passive components, what’s a $25 fee to BR. If you want to build lot’s of xovers, then just spring for your own copy of SE.
Not a bad way for BR to add to his bottom line…