How Speakers Radiate Sound: Why Wall Units are the Enemy?
When we see a forward-firing loudspeaker facing us, it seems reasonable to assume that it is radiating its sound output toward us, producing little or no sound to the sides and rear. After all, it’s called a “forward-firing” speaker, correct? And its drivers are all mounted on the front panel of the speaker enclosure, facing the listener. But this simple label overlooks an important aspect of loudspeaker performance that becomes crucial when home theater fans want to place speakers into a secondary enclosure like a big, custom-designed wall unit with special cavities intended to accommodate floorstanding speakers. Axiom M60 or M80 tower speakers, for example, have fairly tall, somewhat deep cabinets, tapered towards the rear, with typically one or more rear-facing ports. The enclosure volume, multiple ports, and narrow front baffle all contribute to smooth, extended bass response and a spacious soundstage. If you want deep bass, a relatively large enclosure is a fact of life in speaker