This is the interesting bit where we share what we know.
Follow the links to articles, papers, and great information we like and like to share.
Don't forget to check back from time to time as we add more information we generate or come across.
A NOTE FROM THE WISE
While these reference sources are great fonts of knowledge and learning, none of them, to our knowledge constitute a step by step guide to achieving a successful project.
It would be erroneous to think that simply reading any of them, absorbing all the information, then embarking upon a project will achieve a guaranteed successful result. it will not.
You should look upon these collections of knowledge as high quality tools in a tool box, great tools, but remember, a box of tools alone cannot make a finely crafted object, it takes the skill of years, and the knowledge of decades for the craftsman to learn to master those tools and push those tools to their limits. Truly mastering any discipline is a lifelong commitment of trying, failing, learning, and succeeding. Most of these publications allow us to remotely learn from masters, but without the wisdom of experience, simply reading them and taking no practical instruction can often leave us with no more than an overload of information.
In audio and acoustics there are so many unique external factors that modify the conditions we work in that no two situations are alike. it takes knowledge and skill to select which techniques and solutions we will use in that unique situation. There are no formulae to these choices, it requires careful study, experience, and analysis to make seemingly simple situations function properly. To make this seemingly simple decision often calls upon decades of knowledge. A seasoned professional will have problems and challenges just the same as the novice, the difference in the project succeeding or failing is in how these issues are caught and dealt with, and that is where experience comes in.
The greatest skill a seasoned professional will have is to know exactly when to call for help, all professionals will have a team they can call upon at times of need and use as a source of knowledge.
As a contributor and co-author to some of these publications I have seen examples where readers have assumed that the book in question provides all they need to achieve their goals, only to then find they are stuck in a very expensive hole with no way out. In many cases is it lack of experience of external factors, or understanding of other aspects, that caused them to set off in the wrong direction from the start. For this very reason we publish this note you are reading here. It is always wise on a substantial project to consult with an expert, even if only to confirm things are correct, it is cheaper than not doing so in many cases. I have seen many cases of people wasting hundreds of thousands on useless results from people who read a book and thought that they were suddenly expert. Some of the biggest names in the world music business have fallen victim of such incompetence, I have personal experience of such cases. It leaves me upset for the victim and sad that such things can occur so often in our industry.
We sadly work in an industry full of myth, trickery, slick marketing, and snake-oil products. Reading these publications will, we think, lead you away from such deception and robbery. You will be better informed and better protected. We think this is fabulous educational material, ideal for anyone serious about what they do, so please, read, enjoy, and learn from some of the best as a step along your journey to greater skills.
If you have a small project, one with little consequence, it can be a great platform to try some of the knowledge you have learned, that is how many of us started. Not everyone can afford a big budget first time around, but beware, it can be very easy to fall into a hole you can't get out of on anything bigger than an amateur bedroom, or garage project.
One thing is for sure, just reading a book will not enable anyone to "build it like a pro", that bit takes years, don't let sharp salesmen send you up a creek without a paddle as they count your money.
Any real professional will be happy to advise, many will be happy to receive people who want to get involved. Many of our own teams are people who turned up full of enthusiasm wanting to learn.
There is plenty of information here to help you learn things, just as we learned when we created it. Above all stay enthusiastic, try things out, experiment, learn, and get involved.
Below are some publications that form a great reference to base your work upon.
The Yamaha NS10M Twenty Years a Reference Monitor. Why?
A look at the characteristics, limitations, needs and performance of desktop near-filed studio monitor loudspeakers.
The study includes a wide sample of many popular near-filed loudspeakers and analyses the properties of the most popular systems.
In situ directivity measurement of flush-mounted loudspeakers in a
non-environment listening room
Daniel Fernandez Comesa
Paul Rodr´guez Garcıa
A look at the characteristics, and measurements of flush mounted loudspeakers and techniques for measuring them,
Power Systems for Critical Audio Installations
A look at the requirements of professional audio installations from power distribution systems and what techniques should be used for optimum results.
Loudspeakers and Not-So-Loud speakers.
A look at the minefield of untruths and deception that are loudspeaker specification sheets.
Manufacturers knowingly deceiving the customer in order to make their products look louder than they really are.
Here we look into the consequences and pitfalls of believing the false numbers that are published and what we can do to best avoid a specification disaster.
Sound System Analysis.
The flawed science of measuring the unmeasurable.
A look at the inherent problems of measuring sound systems in rooms, and the myth that the combination can be treated with equalisation or simple processing.
UPS Engineering case study
A look at the implementation of a UPS system for professional audio in a working large scale studio environment.
CINEMA SOUND AND THE LOUDNESS ISSUE: ITS ORIGINS AND IMPLICATIONS
A look at the current situation in cinema sound regarding loudness and playback levels.
A video in which Philip recounts for almost two hours in a comprehensive interview where he discusses a great history of what we do and why we do it.
Sit down, grab the popcorn, and prepare for a comprehensive history of what we do.
Thanks to our friends at Audioforo for the great video.
Multi Position Measurement of Low Frequency Loudspeakers in Cinema Rooms
A look at the viability and repeatability of multi-microphone measurement techniques in the measurement of low frequency loudspeaker systems.
If multi-microphone measurement can be used as a source of data for system equalisation, and if so, how it would relate back to any individual listener as an improvement in response.
The results raised many questions.
Basic evaluation of the effectiveness of loudspeaker suspension mountings for installed entertainment systems.
It has recently being brought to our attention that various unsubstantiated claims are being made about the ability of resilient suspension mountings to reduce acoustic transmission through building structures and reduce the volume levels within the same room as they are playing. The rather curious nature of some of these claims has lead us to perform the following tests The tests were performed with a view to ascertain exactly what benefits are achieved by the use of such mountings.
DISTRIBUTED LOUDSPEAKER ARRAY MEASUREMENT
AND CORRECTION TECHNIQUES
It has been common practice in cinema calibration (and some other areas of audio) to use a distributed-source loudspeaker-array for the ambient sound-field reproduction. As a part of the cinema loudspeaker-alignment process, systems engineers have been required to analyse and equalise these arrays to a recommended target response by means of the averaging of between four and eight microphones distributed within the calibration area.1, 2 Ostensibly, this procedure would make the array subjectively match the sound of an individual screen-channel that had been calibrated to the same response, but the evidence that this would actually be the case was, at best, tenuous. Other experts had argued that more-compatible results could be achieved if the individual loudspeakers in the arrays were timbrally matched to the screen channel. This paper will present
evidence of the finer details and pitfalls encountered when attempting to analyse a complex soundfield created by what is often more than five individual distributed sources, and whether such analysis for the purpose of system correction is even possible.
Sound System Security in an Online Environment.
System security isn’t really a thing that tends to concern the average audio installer, we often wonder what it has to do with us, but it doesn’t take too much thought to realise that it really should concern us, and that it should do from the very first stages of system design and specification right through to after sales service and maintenance.
Many of us routinely install systems in an environment where malicious interference could cause serious commercial issues for our customers or, in many cases, even cause mass public panic and all the consequences that brings with it.