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Join Date: Oct 2003
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"So if I liked the clean sound of the B&W, how would that drive the kind of DIY designs I am looking at?"
b&w takes the other approach to good sound--they try to shoot for being as omnidirectional as possible. in an untreated home room, this will give a very ambient sound as reflections are bouncing off of everything all over the place. this might be the best for something like classical music. however, it is the worst for speech intelligibility. all those reflections make it very difficult to hear what is being said. as an exagerated example, if you have ever been in a large stone cathedral, it is almost impossible to hear what the person at the front is saying because there are so many reflections and such long decay. that can be overcome with a ton of room treatments or by using horns. horns just keep the sound from splashing off all the surfaces before it gets to your ears. as a result, some of the ambience is lost, but in return speech is super clear and imaging is about as good as it gets. for movies, speech intelligibity is paramount.
the second issue is one of sheer spl, not that you will always listen at high spl. high sensitivity systems have a much easier time recreating dynamics, so transients such as gunshots or even crescendos during classical concerts will sound much closer to lifelike.