Originally Posted by Nuance
Ha - same stuff, different day with you, DS-21. You provided one reference (a Wilson speaker), but that hardly proves all other speakers will have poor off-axis response.
As I wrote above, I always use the most recent speaker listed on Stereophile's website to prove my point about the mushroom cloud midrange inherent in the large mid + tweet on a 180deg baffle. Why? Because the specific model of speaker may change, but the physics behind them does not. And just going to Stereophile's website and pulling the first speaker review is easier than searching for a previous speaker review, as well as more current. (Why use a review from 2004 to prove a point when a review from 2012 will do so?)
Do you think the Wilson is materially different in its radiation pattern from any other 7" 2-way with a flush-mounted tweeter? Such as, for instance, the Usher Tiny Dancers I ranked dead last by a large margin in a blind test between it and four other speakers with much more consistent midrange patterns (KEF HTS3005SE, Zaph ZBM4, Tannoy Arena, Behringer B2031P)? Here, for reference, is the horizontal off-axis plot of those bad-sounding-to-me speakers:
If so, how? What would make one of them not perform just like the Wilson and the Usher in this aspect, except the obvious (a properly-sized waveguide on the tweeter)?
Originally Posted by Nuance
Oh, I don't disagree with any of that sir. He stated that a non-controlled directivity design flat out won't measure well or sound good, so that's where my argument lies.
They don't measure well. That is simply fact. See Wilson Duette and Usher Tiny Dancer, supra.
You see, horizontal off-axis response is a measurement.
One that, in my years of listening to speakers, has better correlated with my perception of the speaker's sound better than any other.* By definition of being non-constant-directivity in the midrange, such speakers have off-axis midrange response that differs significantly in timbre from the on-axis response. The off-axis response has a lot more midrange energy, because of the simple physics that I mention and JA noted in his comments on the Wilson speaker: "This is the result of the relatively large woofer's radiation pattern narrowing at the top of its passband, contrasting with the wider dispersion of the tweeter at the bottom of its passband."
Physics, not magic. Objective, not subjective. Though what that excess of midrange energy thrown into the room does to the sound of music in a system is, obviously, subjective.
Furthermore, keep in mind that "omnidirectional" and "hemispheric" are both subsets of controlled midrange directivity. In the midrange, it seems "hemispheric" the direction that Philharmonic Audio goes.
*The one exception of which I can think is the Acapella Violon 2000. The midrange (IIRC, a big horn fed by a Dynaudio dome midrange) sounded excellent, as did the treble, but the bass was badly mistuned (very peaky, a lot like the Wilson Puppy) and that soured me on the speaker. I surmised at the time to get the efficiency of the bass unit up to that of the midrange. I understand that subsequent iterations of this speaker have moved from a vented box to closed box, and IIRC doubled the number of woofers, but I've not heard them.