The cunning trick utilized within the speaker industry


In this post, you will learn about a cunning trick used within the speaker industry right under our noses.

New speakers come out every single year. Think about that. How can progress happen so frequently and so constantly? Is it not more likely that we are being duped into thinking that advances have been made just so they can sell us the next "new" speaker?

If we look back at the speaker measurements in the reviews by Mr Atkinson, over the past 20 years, do we see a steady upward progression in frequency response flatness? Has there been a progression in any aspect of the measurements over that period?
No there has not. 

Wake up and smell the coffee folks. It's like the way the branding of food and drink changes over the years although the product remains the same. Except when it comes to speakers, we expect improvements, not the same thing. And yet there is no evidence to show that the sound quality IS getting better. 

Do not be duped!
kenjit
You can pollute this forum with a thousand threads and you will not change a thing. Your disdain for the speaker industry is palatable and frankly getting ridiculous. Did you get fired from the industry? You have nothing to offer but your constant pounding of the industry. You act like someone owes you something. Big yawn .....
@dill Do you have any evidence to refute what I've said or are you just going to skirt around the issue? Do you agree or disagree?
Guys, it might not be what we think. Look:
And yet there is no evidence to show that the sound quality IS getting better.
When in fact we all know the truth is quite the opposite, everything especially speakers are a whole lot better now than ever.
But that's because we've all been around and doing this long enough to know from experience. If you've only been around a short while, or especially if you were just born yesterday, then everything kenjit says would make a lot more sense.
So it could just be he is very young. I am thinking, lets see, has to be old enough to operate a computer, type a few words, rudimentary sentence structure.... carry the one.... all things considered I'm gonna say 11? 13, tops.
Millercarbon,that's one of the better post ive read on this forum in some time.This guy Ken is carnival barker,I doubt few take his post serious.
 
Perhaps Richard Vandersteen is the exception to this "cunning trick"?

I guess new cars come out every year too.   
Millercarbon,that's one of the better post ive read on this forum in some time.This guy Ken is carnival barker,I doubt few take his post serious.

Right. But remember even the snottiest slacker in school grew up to be... oh, wait... he's still a snot? Nevermind.

wait until the troll discovers Audio Research.....
" Do you have any evidence to refute what I've said or are you just going to skirt around the issue?"

The issue is only in your head, stop bothering us with your juvenile, petty and lame accusations.
I own MAGICO i was not duped.
Magico are certainly no exception. They bring out multiple models one after another just like other companies. 
New and improved has been around since the early days of toothpaste and toilet bowl cleaners and you've just figured out that speaker makers are in on it too?

This is getting to be like those old silent film era serial westerns where you knew what to expect (since the good guys always won) but you went and took a look anyway. At least those could be cliff hangers. Here, you know what the outcome is before you poke your head in.

All the best,
Nonoise
Assuming we don’t all really need a new speaker every year to keep up with technology... what is the realistic life span of a speaker that is taken care of.... surrounds....crossover parts.... etc?
Post removed 
" They bring out multiple models one after another just like other companies."

It is called "business". Just about every company on the planet produces new products or different models. It is what makes companies stay in business. Do you know what it takes for companies to stay in business? You seem to have a very sophomoric view on how things work. It is not a conspiracy.
@dill 

Do you have any irrefutable evidence that speakers have got better over the past 20 years? Are you going to wake up and smell the coffee or just stay in denial forever? 

It is called "business".

Are you confirming my accusation that business is the real reason new speakers keep coming out, and that there are no advances?
I'm glad you agree. 

what is the realistic life span of a speaker that is taken care of
It could be as little as a few weeks before the buyer realises hes been duped and gets fed up of his speakers. This is the inevitable consequence of non custom tuning.
Those little devils.....👺

Actually the technology available to design and manufacture speaker components to strict tolerances that produce better performance continues to improve and become more affordable for manufacturers to apply. The end product overall can be of much higher quality and considerably smaller than in the past as a result. Very much like how computers continue to become faster, more powerful and smaller over time.

It’s much easier to envision the whole world is a bunch of knuckle dragging con artists (there are plenty of those too) and Nothing is going nowhere as a result than it is to actually do the research needed to learn how things can actually work and get better. 


" Do you have any irrefutable evidence that speakers have got better over the past 20 years?"

- I certainly do, we all do, however that is not something I want to share with you.

" Are you confirming my accusation that business is the real reason new speakers keep coming out, and that there are no advances?"

- I certainly am not. I don't agree with anything you say. I am not obsessed with speaker measurements and your silly insistence that you are correct.

" And yet there is no evidence to show that the sound quality IS getting better."

- I would say that if a speaker company stays in business for a long period of time, that is evidence that the sound is getting better. Logic would suggest that if it didn't, they wouldn't be in business.
EBM said that he owns Magico....
Its how the U.S. economy works and any other capitalist society works . You are not forced to buy new speakers every year . Hopefully you will find some peace in your audio life some day soon .
Kenjit,
I have personally worked in the loudspeaker manufacturing industry.
And I have seen even in the little factories I have worked in, a discernable and measurable increase in fidelity using hard-nosed science.
Differences in crossover design, materials in the designs, speaker (driver) design, and component changes in technology even down to the internal wiring and terminals.
Have you ever heard a loudspeaker cabinet lined with sprung steel plates, also connected electrically as a ground plane to the crossover? Probably not; yet I own two pairs of speakers utilising this technology.

The World is spinning and you're not well informed as to what technology is out there I'm afraid.
Do you see a steady downward progression of distortion in tube amplifiers over the last hundred years?
Do you see a steady downward progression of distortion in tube amplifiers over the last hundred years?
Thats irrelevant. This is a discussion about speakers not amplifiers. 
@rixthetrick have you not read stereophile before? Show us examples of where the improvements are? I dont see any. The graphs look pretty similar as you go through the reviews over the past twenty years. As far as I know they still use mdf now as they did back then. No changes. Crossover design is a fallacy. Its just whatever suits the designers whim. No improvements there either. All the best. 
My mental picture of Kenjit is unibomber-esque, tucked away in a shed somewhere pounding out a manifesto about "big-speaker" and the "deep‐driver collective". I can pick out his topics before I see the user name these days and I mainly click to see what the reactions are. 

Or maybe it's Andy Kaufman pulling one over on the HI-FI community.  Either way, good stuff.
And he obviously has still not watched the Danny Richie GR Research Tech Talk Tuesday videos, free to all on You Tube. Master Class-level information about loudspeaker design (including comprehensive discussions about crossover design). An intellectually lazy person, not to mention a bore.
Nice try bdp24, that's just what "big driver" would say....
Kenjit does have a point to some degree. The other day I was window shopping a used stereo store and some KEF 105/2's were playing. These loudspeakers were from like 1980. They were hooked up to some old Audio Research stuff. They sounded amazing. I chuckled and wondered to myself why I had dropped 25 grand on more current gear. I do believe at some point we had hit the ceiling in loudspeaker design and amplifier design and now there are improvements but the sound is just different and maybe better but not the degree you would expect. I still say my Acoustat 2 plus 2's were better than my current  Martin Logan's. Older Thiels sounded better than the newer stuff before they went under. High end Audio had to go to the esoteric extremes to get better. Vandersteen 7's, Wilson anything, Magico, Focal. These loudspeakers are like 60 grand for a pair. Yes they are an improvement but now out of budget of most audiophiles. 
Where I don’t often agree with Kenjit, I do see his point regarding speakers. For example, my speakers are 20 years old. Made by a Danish company called Avance, retailed for $8K back then. Uses all Scanspeak Classic series drivers and high quality crossovers, still sounds great to me.

I did replace the ferrofluid in the tweeters, which was a simple process on the Scanspeak silk soft dome tweeters.  DIYers are building quality speakers using these same drivers today.


The World does not need more new speakers. There are enough past and present designs to satisfy all tastes and proclivities!
Rogers Hall, WSU, 1977, some guy had some old speakers and wondered how they would sound hooked up to what was at the time a very impressive Kenwood integrated and Technics DD turntable. Even back then I was hard core into tweaks and so my speaker cable was much better (what we called back then "thicker") than the usual lamp cord. Plus it was obvious how serious we were, the wire ends were not just twisted but actually tinned. With real solder. I know. Even now it gives me chills how serious we were. Sometimes the speakers were even pointed the same direction.

So we hooked em up and man they really sounded good. Was it the lack of damping in the cabinet? The solid wood used on 3 sides? The press-board used on the back? Or was it the one-way paper cone driver and tiny weak magnet? Possibly it was the flimsy stamped basket. Probably not the hair thin wire twisted around the speaker terminals- but then again you never know...

Or maybe, just maybe, it was that we all knew it was crap- but surprisingly not as crappy as expected, and so THAT is why we were so impressed.

We report. You decide.
PS- kenjit, having read and studied all your comments allow me to present for your entertainment and edification the one true perfect speaker:

______________________________________________________________

What's that, you say? That's just a straight line? No kenjit, that's your perfect speaker. Based on your definition of perfection: measurement.
A flat line. Which is also what they call it when you die. That my friend is sheer poetry. Think about it.
Wow, it took Kenjit 16 posts before he mentioned “custom tuning”. Gotta be a record...
Yes, the sneaky little trick used by speaker designers is to turn their underwear inside out and get an extra days wear from them.
Another informative post from the Foil-Hat Speaker Society
 Wonder what kenjit thinks about wine...
I think his problem is he fell in love with a speaker that left him for another guy because he is so boring.
Actually some of what kenjit says is true. I do think speakers are much better than they were 20 years past, but regarding the "new and improved" model he is dead on. After a point I dont care about frequency response. Not so much the response but what sacrifices the designer has to make to get this flat response. 
ANTIFA

Another Nitwit Trying To Influence Fellow Audiophiles 
I feel like I've fallen behind with my Quad ESLs from 1957.
Excuse this interruption, 
#9
#9
#9
#9
#9
Back to your regularly scheduled speaker conspiracy theory 

@kenjit - WRT....
If we look back at the speaker measurements in the reviews by Mr Atkinson, over the past 20 years, do we see a steady upward progression in frequency response flatness? Has there been a progression in any aspect of the measurements over that period?
No there has not.
Frequency response and flatness are probably the two LEAST Significant measurements ever posted about speakers, because most speakers can compete with each other based on those measurements.

There are so many more propertieis/attributes that one should look at e.g.

- cabinet design - e.g.
----- internal baffles to reduce internal standing waves
----- bracing and curved sides to reduce cabinet vibrations
----- front panel design to improve imaging
- driver development e.g.
----- "super tweeters" exceeding 50kHz (not audible - but supposedly affect overall speaker performance)
----- new materials to improve longevity, dynamics, clarity and details
----- new technologies, such as plasma tweeters, Dome mid range etc...
- driver placement and mounting
----- to improve imaging
----- to improve time alignment
- cross over design e.g.
----- better parts - improves in imaging and dynamic performance
----- better crossover designs (fewer parts) improves imaging, clarity
- anechoic chamber analysis to ensure unwanted "properties" are identified and dealt with

And those are just a few attributes I can think of without getting into the nitty-gritty details

Speakers, on the whole, are so much better today AND you get much better performance for a more affordable price.

Granted, there are some very pricey speakers out there. But if you look around the $1000/pair range you can get some very nice sounding speakers i.e. compared to 20 years ago...

You have small (bookshelf sized) speakers pumping out amazing bass with very good imaging.

You have speakers that melt into their surroundings to produce amazing "concert like" reproduction

You have active speakers with great dynamics and superb LFE frequency response

So - I really think your initial statement is not really doing the speaker industry any justice.

YES - there are some very good speakers from 20 years ago that can compete with (and better) many more modern speakers, but back then those speakers were "comparatively" pricey. Tannoy and Quad come to mind, but there are many others also.

I like the speakers of today and what they offer to the consumer

Having said that - My Gersnman Acoustics Sonogram speakers are a 10-12 year old design, but they were really ahead of their time back then, i.e. from a design perspective.

Regards - Steve






@kenjit 


Living in your parent’s basement with a bitter outlook makes for a tough transition to adulthood. 
Good speakers from 20 years back certainly, but get much older than this and only the Quads quickly come to mind.
The cunning trick utilized within the speaker industry
In this post, you will learn about a cunning trick used within the speaker industry right under our noses.

———————————————————————

yet again we see the claim that kenjit will teach us or educate us about the speaker industry.  I learned nothing from this post!  I’ve been duped by the OP again!!!!!
color me stupid
@williewonka 

There are so many more propertieis/attributes that one should look at e.g.
  • What you need to understand is that speaker design has not got better overall. Nothing has changed, only the branding. 


  • If sound quality has improved, it would be evident in the measurements. Without those its just your say so. 


  • You have not convinced me that sound quality has improved over the last twenty years. 


  • You have not provided any evidence that sound quality has got better. 


  • Success in business does not depend on making improvements. Often all it takes is rebranding. 


  • In case you didnt know, the speaker industry is driven by profit rather than sound quality. 

I would like you to show me frequency response graphs to prove that they have got flatter over the past twenty years. 

cabinet design - e.g.
----- internal baffles to reduce internal standing waves

Thats hardly a new development. They could have done that 50 years ago. Im pretty sure they knew about standing waves, 50 years ago. 


----- bracing and curved sides to reduce cabinet vibrations

Again, this is not new. 


----- front panel design to improve imaging

All i see is rectangular boxes. Nothing new there either. 

- driver development e.g.
----- "super tweeters" exceeding 50kHz (not audible - but supposedly affect overall speaker performance)

The supposed benefits of that dont seem to show up on the graphs either. And yes 50khz is not audible so thats a worthless improvement.

The speaker industry has never accepted the use of measurements to prove the superiority of their speakers. It is ALL marketing, word of mouth, reviews, hearsay and unproven assertions by the manufacturers. It has always been this way. Do not be duped. 
@kenjit 


I feel so much better now, knowing that you are looking out for me. Those evil speaker builders are waiting around every corner, just waiting to dupe an unsuspecting public who can"t hear.

Next thing that will likely alarm you is that some speaker manufacturers actually do measure and publish their measurements. Will you be happy they listened to you, because they obviously hang on your every word? Or angrier that they liberated your brilliance to advance their evilness?


Wow! Once more we see that Kenjit is headed toward the "Most popular  thread of the week" based only on his silly insistence that there is some sort of "conspiracy" on the part of the speaker industry to actually stay in business (GASP!).

My personal feeling is that speakers today are better designed and sound better overall than the the speakers of yesteryear. But that is, of course, only my personal opinion (and we all know how personal opinions work) and based on more than 54 years of buying and listening, and buying and listening, and buying and listening, and on and on.... 

Of course there have always been standouts among the speaker industry throughout the years. Those standout companies that are still in business continue to offer new models because of changing materials, continued access to necessary parts, changes in design models and methodologies and the necessity to sell to the market and those new to that market. And, while those design changes and improvements are sometimes only in tiny increments, especially among those companies that produce good sounding and high quality speaker to begin with.... those improvements to sound and quality still exist despite what you say Kenjit...

To address the nonsense that they only make these changes or claims to sell more speakers.... well that is just necessary to marketing! Instead of throwing your "conspiracy theories" out there right and left go listen to the speakers and "vote with your dollars".

Continued profits are the reason for, and necessity of, staying in business.  I am never one to begrudge a company a continued profit... Just how would they stay in business otherwise and continue to offer product to their customers.
Aside from continued changes and advancements these changes are sometimes prompted by a "changing of the guard" if you will. As speaker designers retire or pass the company either goes under or continues on using the guiding philosophies of their founders... either building upon it or wreaking it. 

Kenjit's rants will never be satisfied, can never be answered to his satisfaction, and will never be resolved only because his only goal is to incite, be divisive, and to gain the next "Most Popular Thread of the Week"!

Rant on Kenjit!! I once claimed I would "opt out" of your nonsense! But, "Just when I think I'm out... They pull me back in... Pull me back in!" :-)

2 lazy to watch the laser scan of pistonic motion of Vandersteen 5” mid vs another “ no progress in 20 years popular midrange “ ?

even the simple model 1 at $1,370 pair are not rectangular boxes

of course the poster love the ancient KEF with the low diffraction Head, time alignment of the drivers, stiff but not yet pistonic drivers, real engineering with crude first generation FFT to look at energy waterfall.... where is Raymond today????