Speaker Measurements

I’ve always been a bit mystified by all the graphs that Stereophile publishes, I’ll just admit that now. Some of them are pretty self-explanatory, like the impedance graphs, make sense. If they dip too low, your amp is going to have a harder time pushing the speaker. Got it. But the phase graph? Or how about those cumulative spectral decay “waterfall”  plots? Eeek.

What I want, but have yet to find, is a concise description of what these things mean. More specifically, what does a “good” result look like, what does a “bad” result look like, and what would those results mean, that is, what sonic impact (if any) could you expect if you saw a particular result appear in an article talking about a speaker?

Well, I found something. It’s more on the comprehensive (but not exhaustive) side rather than concise and the whole “good|bad result” thing is kind of buried, but it’s the best I’ve found so far. Interestingly, the article — actually, a series of 3 articles — are by Mr Measurement himself, John Atkinson of Stereophile Magazine.

Mr Atkinson posted the links to these articles in reference to a talk he’s giving at SSI and Axpona this year, which he says is an update of these articles (they’re from 1999-ish). Good stuff, and quite helpful, generally.

About Scot Hull 1062 Articles
Scot started all this back in 2009. He is currently the Publisher here at PTA, the Publisher at The Occasional Magazine, and the Executive Producer at The Occasional Podcast. There are way too many words about him over on the Contributors page.