Loudspeaker book

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I've just come across a book entitled "Loudspeakers" by Briggs, from the 1950s if I remember correctly. Looks like it was a quality publication in its day.

I'm a newbie when it comes to speakers, but I know that speaker design has moved on somewhat from those days. However, does anyone know if this book is worth anything more than novelty value? Worth buying?

I flicked through it only briefly. Incidentally, it includes an interesting looking design, mounted in the corner of the room on bricks, firing upwards towards the ceiling. Another looks like a polystyrene sphere.
diyAudio Member
Joined 2007
I think Mr Briggs is/was the founder of "Wharfedale" so probably worth buying, even if only for historical interest.
I suppose that all depends on your avaliable resources and how much it is, you could always read it and then sell it on to another interested forum member.
Regards Ted
Okay, I've bought the book. It's in very good condition, hard cover, missing the dust jacket however. And it's quite heavy, being on art paper. There are 336 pages.

Title: Loudspeakers
Author: G.A. Briggs with R.E. Cooke, B.Sc. (Eng.) as Technical Editor.
Published by Rank Wharfedale Ltd.
Fifth edition (revised and enlarged) 1958, reprinted 1972.

The introduction tells us that the first edition appeared in 1948 with card covers and a mere 78 pages.

This book has a nice aerial view photo of Wharfedale, showing a rather pleasant country estate and the river Wharfe. Chapter 1 is a short autobiography of Mr Briggs and his company. An entertaining read.

A humourous little quote from ch.1:
"The delicate work of cone and coil assembly needs the feminine touch, so every evening I took home two hat boxes containing cones and coils which Mrs Briggs assembled. I took them back to the Bradford cellar next morning, ready for our day's production. I can say this: when Mrs Briggs put a coil on the neck of a cone it stayed put; we never had a loose joint. She also became a first-class solderer of speech coil wire to eyelets in cones.
"Incidentally, this accounts for the adoption of the name WHARFEDALE, as we lived in Ilkley, one of the beauty spots in the very beautiful valley of the River Wharfe. I recall that 20 years later I was giving a demonstration in Toronto, when at question time someone jumped up and asked why our speakers were named Wharfedale when they were made in Bradford, which is in Airedale. I pointed out that the beauty of Wharfedale matched the beauty of the product (ahem!) and that we could not risk using a name like Airedale in case dissatisfied customers wrote and complained that we were dirty dogs; whereupon a lady observed very brightly that we might at least have adopted Airedale as a suitable name for our woofers."

According to the title page, Mr Briggs wrote 13 other books, namely:
Sound Reproduction.
Pianos, Pianists and Sonics.
High Fidelity.
Stereo Handbook.
A to Z in Audio.
Audio Biographies.
Cabinet Handbook.
More About Loudspeakers.
Audio and Acoustics.
Aerial Handbook.
Musical Instruments and Audio.
About Your Hearing.
diyAudio Member
Joined 2007
Some very interesting ideas, especially on the importance of high efficiency speakers and cabinet resonances, still in the era of tubes and valves, the importance of those first 5 watts of power is stressed a couple of times as is the fact that big speakers sound better and are less stressed in the lower octaves ( I guess we might take that for granted now ) but references to 3 way systems using 15 + 10 + 3inch tweeter make me think of some of the open baffles now under construction.
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