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Importance of type of drivers?.

Apr 13, 2019
A question to the many knowledgeable people on the obscure topic of speaker construction.

I've seen there is a wide variety in driver materials, for instance most of the pro brands (Genelec, Neumann, Amphion) use metallic drivers (aluminium mainly, and some like Focal beryllium). Other professional brands such as Adam use those AMT. Highly regarded audiophile brands, like Sonus Faber and others, use soft drivers make of silk polyester film, wood?, etc. I have the impression that metallic ones are that, more metallic sound, and soft ones are more warm, forgiving, but is this true?.

Is there any consensus on the relevance of the type of driver in the quality of the speakers?. Listening fatigue is associated to some type of drivers?.

Some brands have been very successful with cheap drivers (old Proacs responses, or the new Buchards). Other brands, like Dynaudio, highlight a lot in their websites that they use their own great drirvers.

Really, I don't know what information to extract from the type of driver.
Jul 9, 2019
While we're at it: how about ceramic (coated) drivers like Accuton provides, or the much cheaper SB Acoustics? Both brands sport woofers, squawkers and tweeters - no idea which type would benefit most
Sep 10, 2019
Se Pa
my ears are my judge, the better designed and built speakers vary(as you stated) across the board. So long as the design and goal meet and my ears are happy I don't honestly worry much about it.

Another Bob

Patreon Donor
Nov 28, 2018
Madison, WI
Speaker drivers, like just about everything else, involve compromises. The designer must prioritize multiple, and often conflicting, parameters, including frequency response, distortion, dispersion, power handling, cost, and consumer expectations. Whether those compromises are successful (to you) depend largely on how well your priorities align with the designer's. But even great drivers won’t result in a great, or even good, speaker if the crossover and cabinet design are not of high quality.

Trying to pick a good speaker based (for example) on the cone material of its drivers is a pointless exercise. Instead, pay attention to sources of thorough measurements (not just on-axis frequency response), and of course, listen to them with your own ears.
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