Originally Posted by Pete C
How did you calculate this? The drivers of the CT-100 are only 10mm larger per driver since the CT-500 drivers are 50mm x 50mm vs 40mm x 70mm. I don't see how that minuscule difference in extra driver size of the CT-100 can make up for the extra 4th driver of the CT-500. Maybe I just suck at math and I am not bothering to look up how to calculate areas of a circle.
1. Calculation for the 50mm circular drivers in the CT-HT500
Fact #1: In audio specification, the size specified for a round driver is the diameter of the driver. The diameter of the new round drivers in the CT-HT500 is 50mm
Fact #2: The formula for the area of a circle:
Area for a Circle: A=pi (3.14) x the radius squared (the radius is
1/2 the diameter of 50mm, or 25mm)
Area = 3.14 x 25mm x 25mm = 1,962.5 square mm
Fact #3: 1,962.5 square mm is the area of one of the 4 50mm drivers in the new HT-CT500, so,
4 x 1,962.5 square mm = 7,850 square mm total driver area for
the 4 50mm drivers in the soundbar of the HT-CT500
2. Calculation for the 40mm x 70mm driver in the CT-HT100.
This driver is almost rectangular-shaped, though technically it would be considered an oval. Using the formula for calculation of the area of a rectangle will slightly
overstate the area of this driver, but this was easier than using differential calculus to compensate for the sharp angles of the 4 oval corners of this driver.
Fact #1: Area of a Rectangle = Length x Width
40mm x 70mm = 2,800 square mm
3 x 2,800 square mm = 8,400 square mm
Fact #2: 8,400 square mm is 7% greater than 7850 square mm.
Fact #3: The sound bar in the CT-HT100 has approximately 7% greater driver surface area than the driver surface area in the newer CT-HT500.
3. We cannot leave out the small woofer in the so-called subwoofer amplifier control unit for each unit.
Fact #1: The Sony Japanese website specs the CT-HT500 woofer as 130mm in diameter. The area for a 130mm diameter speaker is 13,266.5 square mm.
Fact #2: The Sony Japanese website specs the CT-HT100 woofer as 160mm in diameter. The area for a 160mm diameter speaker is 20,096 square mm.
Fact #3: The woofer in the HT-CT100 is 51.5% greater in surface area than the woofer in the HT-CT500. This is a significant difference.
4. If you total the total driver area from both Sony units, you get:
HT-CT500 Sound Bar Driver Area = 7,850.0 square mm
HT-CT500 Woofer Driver Area = 13,266.5 square mm
Driver Area = 21,116.5
HT-CT100 Sound Bar Driver Area = 8,400 square mm
HT-CT100 Woofer Driver Area = 20,096 square mm
Driver Area = 28,496
5. 28,496 is 35% larger than 21,116.5
Therefore, the older HT-CT100 drivers will move more air than the newer HT-CT500 drivers because they are 35% larger than the drivers in the newer unit.
6. Sony specs the weight of the woofer/amp of the HT-CT100 at 10 kilos, and they spec the weight of the newer HT-CT500 as 9.1 kilos. A kilo is approximately 2.2 lbs., so the newer HT-CT500 woofer/amp weighs 2 lbs. less
than the older HT-CT100 woofer/amp. The smaller woofer with a less-powerful magnet could account for the 2 lb. weight reduction.
7. So where does that leave us? I previously noted Sony tends to put their best engineering efforts in their very first design of a new product, then they look for ways to cheapen it.
A perfect example is Sony's first FM stereo tuner, the ST-5000W. It was their first one, and their best one: All the subsequent tuners that followed it were not as good as the original ST-5000W. When the ST-5000W was reviewed, the reviewers of the time said it was as good or better than the McIntosh and Marantz tuners it was built to compete against.
Same thing with Sony's early turntables. They were belt drive, they were better than the Linn Sondek's they competed with, and the early Sony's now sell for crazy money on eBay.
My expectation is that the HT-CT500 will not sound as good as the HT-CT100 because it has less driver area and it has a lighter woofer/amp.
Of course, we really won't know until the HT-CT500 becomes available, but if it were me, I would not be rushing to dump my HT-CT100 unless I needed the extra connectivity and upscaling the HT-CT500 offers.
As always, YMMV, of course.