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31/10/2011

Prism Sound dScope Series III Gets Put To The Test

UK-based Warwick Audio has invested in a Prism Sound dScope Series III audio analyser in order to test the performance of a new amplifier that it has designed to drive its revolutionary Flat Flexible Loudspeaker systems. The instrument was supplied by Prism Sound’s UK distributor, Thurlby Thandar Instrument Distribution (TTid).
Based in Coventry, Warwick Audio was founded in 2001 as a spin out company from the University of Warwick. The company’s technology is based on successful loudspeaker research that was carried out at the University’s School of Engineering by Dr. Duncan Billson and Prof. David Hutchins.
Using Dr. Billson and Prof. Hutchins research as its starting point, Warwick Audio has re-engineered Electrostatic Loudspeaker [ESL] technology to create a flat, flexible loudspeaker laminate that provides linear performance at low cost. Warwick Audio works as a design partner with manufacturers that are using its laminate fabrication to developing audio products for public or multiple listener spaces. As well as its base in Coventry, the company also has a specialist technical engineering and development operation in Ebbw Vale, South Wales.
In recent months Warwick Audio has been working on a new range of loudspeaker and amplifier products that it needed to test in order to measure distortion characteristics. Senior Electronics Engineer Brian Atkins, who is in charge of researching speaker technology and enhancing the speaker’s performance, was responsible for choosing the dScope Series III measurement platform.
He said: “We began investigating a solution for amplifier measurements, and looked at a number of audio test instruments, including the Prism Sound dScope Series III Audio Analyser. This seemed the best because it was small, cost effective and UK-designed, and contained all the tools we needed for amplifier measurements, and hence we invested in the Prism Sound solution.”
Atkins began a dialogue with Prism Sound, during which he discovered that the company had already solved his problem by creating a software module that enabled him to measure distortion in flat speakers without needing an anechoic chamber.
Simon Woollard, Applications Engineer for Prism Sound, said: “A growing number of our clients are involved in the fields of both audio electronics and electroacoustics. We had an instrumentation architecture that could potentially support both electronic and electroacoustic measurements, so it made perfect sense for us to develop a loudspeaker testing module for our dScope Series III instrument. This module allows customers like Warwick Audio to measure their loudspeakers in a non-anechoic environment, providing frequency response, harmonic distortion, impedance and phase response using a gated impulse response technique.”
Warwick Audio is now using its dScope Series III to test both speaker distortion and general electronic testing.
“We especially like the instrument’s small footprint,” Atkins said. “It is very easy to use and to move around the lab, and is providing very accurate results when it comes to measuring our loudspeaker and amplifier products.”
(BMcN)
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