Since I hooked up our HDTV we have been
getting used to the technology. While I was
quick to point out that the new TV didn’t
turn the top one-quarter of the screen upside
down, the wife noticed the sound quality.
And when I listened with my one good ear I
had to agree. But I also wondered how sound
quality so good could come from speakers that
had to fit in such a narrow space.
Speakers have been around since the 1880s
and in all that time only 6 different kinds
of speakers saw common use. The horn was the
first and was popular for about 20 years.
The next five followed the horn and we will
present in no particular order.
The electrodynamic loudspeaker is still the
most common type of speaker in the world.
It consists of a metal frame,an
electromagnetic coil (magnet), a paper cone,
and some flex wire.
The flat panel speakers use voice coils
mounted to flat panels made of everything
from vinyl to Styrofoam.
The diaphragm speaker is the step-child of
the electrodynamic speaker but has a
different shape. This speaker has copper coils
wrapped around clear plastic bulges.
The clear plastic vibrates to make sound.
Plasma arc speakers are not very reliable.
These send an electric current through the
plazma to create sound.
Finally, we come to piezoelectric speakers
which have limited frequency response. Made
only as tweeters or in devices that only need
So even though speakers have been around for
over 130 years, changes have been slow. And
that concludes our quest to learn a little
more about the speakers that are so much a
part of daily lives.
This post is based on my knowledge of the
subject and I know just enough to be
dangerous. Any mistakes made were not
Comments are always welcome.