What is horn loading?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mark Larson, Mar 6, 2002.

  1. Mark Larson

    Mark Larson Supporting Actor

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    I've heard the term "horn loading" being used both for tweeters and for subwoofers. What exactly is it? Is it good for a home use sub?
     
  2. Vince Maskeeper

    Vince Maskeeper Producer

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    Essentially it is loading a speaker or tweater driver in a "horn". A horn would be a shell or a scooped box design that puts the driver at the back end of a channeled opening, essentially creating a megaphone.

    The object, usually, is control over direction and angle of throw- and often results in more focused coverage and better throw. It also a concentrated throw, which often rsults in more concentrated spl.

    Some do use horn loading in home theater equipment (hell, some guys swear buy it)- but in my opinion its main advantage is related to larger venues where multiple drivers covering focused areas are necessary.

    -Vince
     
  3. BobHaymond

    BobHaymond Stunt Coordinator

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    Mark: I'm a newbie at HT but can probably pull rank on most of the youngun's on these posts as far as number of semesters of longevity(circa 1931[​IMG] ). In the old days of HiFi the speakers in radios and record players (no TV) were awful! So they invented the phrase "high fidelity" to apply to to any attempt to get better music from a box; monaural of course. As a graduate student at U of O in 1958 I mounted a 15" University speaker with concentrically mounted horn tweeter in the wall of our cracker-box student housing, effectively using our bedroom as an "infinite baffle". Anyhow, one of the sexiest ways to get better reproduction was to build elaborate horn loading for woofer drivers. If you placed the woofer driver at the mouth of a 10' "horn", it acted a much as a megaphone to get more oomph! Since the lower frequencies could go around corners, these horns could be built out of plywood [increasing square cross section]and folded around a couple of times. The fact that these enclosures got bigger and more complicated was a sexy advantage rather than a bother. Probably the World Champion sexy enclosure of all times was the University (brand) "Cobra": it had a 15" woofer deep in a corner of a humongous box; horn loaded with a labyrinth which finally addresed the listener; they had a mid-range with its own metal folded horn and finally a metal horn tweeter. You have never had fantasies of grandure to match dreaming of owning one of these! Of course, I couldn't afford one in grad school and by the time I could, it had long since been the case that one could not build systems as good as one could buy; and stereo; and small size; and ....
    I am now in the process of constructing my HT; it's been interesting to me that one of the very important issues has been to get equipment out of sight. I'll have a Sony 36XBR450 recessed into wall except for its case frame. I'm putting all components into the wall behind cabinet doors and will use a HotLink for remote. I'll have the C on a 1/8" metel shelf (flat black to match the CSW MC300); the L/R MC300's will "float" at the end of 3/4" steel tubes. So all that one will see are the absolute essentials. Be assured that back in the good old days we hung out all components and "horn loading" (the bigger-the-better) for all to see and especially to admire!
    Bob Haymond
    Clemson, SC
     

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