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Andrew Eckhardt 10th September 2010 03:13 PM

Got neodymium?
I'd put this directly under the sub-forum Loudspeakers but that doesn't appear to be possible. Neodymium magnets are no longer exotic, and maybe soon it will be more trouble than it's worth.

Japan finds alternative to China's rare earth metal stranglehold - Ferrite is might | TechEye

pjp 10th September 2010 04:13 PM

Neodymium is not particularly scarce, nor does China have a stranglehold on the supply.

The USA was supplying 34% of the world's neodymium consumption until very recently, when the mine was shut down because it was cheaper to buy from China.

suntechnik 10th September 2010 04:19 PM

Sorry but it looks like pure politics nothing related to audio.

Neodymium magnet drivers widely available, moreover not only Japan produce drivers.

Andrew Eckhardt 10th September 2010 04:26 PM

Neodymium magnets are currently more expensive than ceramic. If anyone can arrive at neodymium magnet performance for ceramic 8 cost, we're winning. Also, China is mining new neodymium cheaper than anyone else can make new magnets out of barrels of old ones, because China isn't actually paying the productions costs. If anyone has a problem with that, that Might be politics. Anything about magnets is about audio.

pjp 10th September 2010 04:54 PM

On reading the article, they haven't got the ferrite magnet to be as powerful as a neodymium magnet, they've redesigned the motor to work with a magnet that's 50% as strong.

The logical next step would be to use the new design with a neodymium magnet.

Andrew Eckhardt 10th September 2010 04:58 PM

From a position of ignorance relative to the work actually done on the motor, I'll say that it's probably nothing new at all, a simple matter of optimizing for the characteristics of a particular magnet material. The interesting part, to anyone who might recognize it, is the advance of a low cost material with 5 times the energy of standard ceramic magnets. If they acheive 10x, well, I don't think I'd have to argue that would be something too.

suntechnik 10th September 2010 05:04 PM

The article that you have posted the link for contains words like "Japan under the thumb of China" because of rear earth mines in China. Sounds very emotional but not very technical. I never heard that for example Beyma says that Spain under the thumb of China.

When I was purchasing Fostex drivers recently the big ones FE206ES were made in China actually and do have huge ferrite magnets. And the small ones T500AMKII were made in Japan and do have AlNiCo :-)

Andrew Eckhardt 10th September 2010 05:28 PM

I can't really apologize for the journalism or even the attitudes of those on the development team. I don't find any of that very interesting anyway. I didn't have time to research it further, I just thought there might be a lot of people interested in some possible upcoming speaker technology. This whole forum isn't exactly about just waiting to be handed whatever finished products hit the market. Personally, I'm much more excited about things like this than endless debates and toil over stuff that probably doesn't even do anything.

pjp 10th September 2010 05:49 PM


Originally Posted by Andrew Eckhardt (
The interesting part, to anyone who might recognize it, is the advance of a low cost material with 5 times the energy of standard ceramic magnets.

My reading comprehension skills are admittedly lacking, but I can't see where in the article it says they've developed a new ferrite material ?

All I can see is a claim for a new motor design using standard ferrite magnets.

Andrew Eckhardt 10th September 2010 06:23 PM

You got me there! Nothing wrong with your reading comprehension. Maybe I should have read at all. Yes, it appears there is nothing about a ferrite composition that races neodymium magnets, just a rearranging of a motor to use ferrite. Of course the world has been doing that for decades, and if it actually yielded a motor that didn't comparitively lose in weight and size, neodymium magnets probably would never have gotten so popular. Back to post #5, yes.

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