Speaker Grill clothes affect on sound quality debate? - diyAudio
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Old 22nd February 2007, 01:18 PM   #1
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Default Speaker Grill clothes affect on sound quality debate?

I had a conversation this week with a person who works at Linn and then another at B&W and they said something that I just did not believe but they were so sure in what they said.

"The speaker cloth or grills have no affect on sound quality at all"

I said that can't be possible, they said its true, what about HF?

"Nada, Zero! zip, zilch, Zero none!

I did not reply after that, but I just did not believe it.

What is the truth?
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Old 22nd February 2007, 01:23 PM   #2
bigwill is offline bigwill  United Kingdom
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I can't hear it.
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Old 22nd February 2007, 01:42 PM   #3
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While researching for DIY speakers I noticed that the width of the enclosure, the round off of the sides, and the depth of the rabit, were all very critical factors for the staging and imaging qualities of the speakers.

I can't imagine slapping a grill on top of it.

JMHO
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Old 22nd February 2007, 01:45 PM   #4
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Personally, I suspect the problem isn't so much with the fabric used, but the frame on which it is mounted.
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Old 22nd February 2007, 02:09 PM   #5
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Exactly!!!
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Old 22nd February 2007, 02:31 PM   #6
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I though that the fabric resonantes and this is absorbing sound and converting it into machanical movement plus I thought that the HF sound would be defused or even time delayed?

The fabric is a physical membrane and even though alot of sound is passing through it, It cannot be 100% transmission, there must be some reduction, even if its 0.05%

How many times have we looked at amplifiers and seen distortion figures of %0.05 distortion and then %0.005 which would you go for all things being equal.

I have seen many new expensive loudspeakers with foam around the face plate of the tweeter, because even the dimples for the screws affect the disperssion, so again I though a cloth grill would have a similar affect?

I do not personally like grills on speakers, I close my eyes when i listen to music so its not like I am looking at the speakers.
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Old 22nd February 2007, 03:12 PM   #7
Puggie is offline Puggie  United Kingdom
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Depends on the design, I know our ATCs sound different with the grilles on to the grilles off, but IMHO that is more a design of the framework to hold the grille than the actual cloth, I listened to them without cloth in the grilleframe and with different cloth in the grille frame and could not distinguish any difference, without the frame though the change in baffle edge (they have a very harsh 1"or so step around the edge of the baffle that the grill frame sits in and makes it a nice radius) is what I believe is making the difference.

IMHO grille cloth probably does have a small influence on the sound, I do not know if it impares the 'quality' of the sound or not and it is far to small an issue for me to lose sleep over. Especially with issues like baffle edges and mechanical rigidity of cabinets to worry about.

Hows things Troy, not seen you about for a while.
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Old 22nd February 2007, 03:23 PM   #8
cc00541 is offline cc00541  United States
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There is no debate IMO. I recall seeing Joe D' Appolito's measurments of varous speakers with and w/o grills and generally there was serious response abberations at mid and high frequencies. How much of this is due to the frame and how much to the grill itself is hard to say, but I suspect it both would have some effect.

OTOH, JBL L100's used acoustic foam for grill covers. -And we know what acoustic foam does...

C
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Old 22nd February 2007, 04:02 PM   #9
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Hi all,

I love grill clothes, don't like to see the drivers as I don't like to see the engine of my car.

But yes, it needs to be part of the design/developement. If you want to use a grill, you have to design the speakers to work with grills, not just ad grill (and frame) once your done. As example, the whole BBC Monitor series was designed and used with grills, and AFAIK all messurements and adjustments where taken with grills on. The BBC even added a metall grill on the tweeter of the LS3/5a, which improved the frequency response.

never say never
LC
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Old 22nd February 2007, 05:44 PM   #10
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Hi Bill I have been busy having a life instead of working myself into early grave.

Musical Fidelity on the famous MC-1 speakers used Velcro and a soft foam panel as grills, they also believed the plastic or wooden frame for the grill had an undesirable affect on the sound.

I had a chat with Hans Madsen from Vifa at the London Hi-fi show, his new corner loudspeakers use a mesh steel compression fit grill which is rounded like the cabnet, its sound profile has been designed with the grill in place, do all engineers designed speakers with the grill in place now?
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