New enclosure design- Vortex by Flare Audio

Xaborus

Member
2013-06-07 2:32 am
Hey guys.

A small business called Flare Audio has created quite a stir with a new enclosure design. I was skeptical but a university ran some tests and shows that it works.

It's hard to find pictures on how exactly this enclosure works, but it appears that the rear radiation is sent through "fins" to try to spin the rear driver output. Almost like the "stock" heat sinks that come with CPU's.

I figured it would be most easily prototyped and tested with fullrangers first, which is why I posted here.

I'm sure Xrk will have a blast trying to figure out & measure prototypes :D

Discuss on how we can implement, or improve this design.
 
Not a whole lot on their site (links to which generally help so we don't have to waste our time going hunting ;) ).

Creative, & good for them. Hope they do well. To be honest, based on a quick look, I'm not seeing much that is new per se, more variations on the vortex generator & swirl-vane themes that have been present in aerodynamics (some acoustics), gas compressor & exhaust design for 7 decades or so. Applied properly, it's perfectly valid. I sometimes incorporate elements from these into my own designs. B&W do something similar (not quite the same, but it's distantly related) with some of their tweeter loads; at the most prosaic related level is the stuffing of reflex / vent termini with straws or similar. Again, not exactly the same, but the underlying physics are connected.
 
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I like how companies talk about their ideal being to reproduce the sound coming in exactly at the output without coloration, as if this is something no one has ever thought of before.

Normally I immediately dismiss any audio gear that uses the words nano or vortex in the advertising copy.

Aye. Although I'd be a trifle wary about 'directional bass'.

You may laugh, but it does exist, as I found out when I made a really REALLY big horn.
 

Xaborus

Member
2013-06-07 2:32 am
I have to say I'm most interested in the use of these enclosures to make a "virtual" IB. The benefits of no enclosure resonances of OB, without the dipole peak or cancellation of the front & rear wave of OB (huge baffles for bass).

Then I thought of Xrk's nautilus, I wonder if it's working by a vortex means or TL means.
 
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Xaborus

Member
2013-06-07 2:32 am
So the idea is to silence the sound without restricting airflow, is that it?
So, no more stuffing?

Flare audio also claims that speaker drivers in an enclosure don't follow the music/sine wave accurately due to compression of the air when the speaker driver is going "into" the enclosure (which by definition, would be a form of distortion as your modifying the signal). They claim this vortex design allows for symmetrical speaker driver movement, by reducing/removing the pressurization of the speaker enclosure.
 
Flare audio also claims that speaker drivers in an enclosure don't follow the music/sine wave accurately due to compression of the air when the speaker driver is going "into" the enclosure (which by definition, would be a form of distortion as your modifying the signal). They claim this vortex design allows for symmetrical speaker driver movement, by reducing/removing the pressurization of the speaker enclosure.

Oh I see.
Well I get the idea, but now I'm interested in how they actually make it work.

Seems they do it to headphones too. Could be an interesting project with a 3D printer.
 
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NATDBERG

Member
2006-11-25 4:52 pm
Ah! Some people discussion Flare Audio's "vortex technology" - I must have last searched on here about it before this thread started.

I've worked with Flare Audio both installing PA and also installing their hifi speakers for demo. First was with the former and I was taken aback by their bass cabs being so thin, about only 12" deep perhaps with an 18" driver inside. Certainly didn't lack anything to the usual bass cabs with similar drivers which are normally 4 or 5 times as deep.

I asked the guy in charge of the install (turned out to the designer, Davies Roberts) if they used DSP tricks to get the bass and he said no, other than standard DSP crossover, then explained briefly the tech which I quickly forgot (the stuff they advertise).

Anyway, the building of their Zero, consumer speakers reveals more - there's a video of their workshop and the parts.

Basically it involves the air entering into multiple cylindrical spaces, being forced into a spiral flow and exiting again. In the zero speakers at least, this first cylindrical space exits into a second of a different size. These spaces are arranged all around the side of the driver, no room I think behind the driver at all.

I think that for each frequency range, the enclosures need dfferent sized cylindrical spaces. Hence in their Zero speakers there are four or five driver enclosures.

Another technique or "technology" they use is compression of the cabinet side walls. Uses layers of MDF from the baffle to the back, compressed with long bolts all the way from front to back.

A picture says a thousand words, videos sometimes more so I will try to find the video showing some bits of construction .
 

NATDBERG

Member
2006-11-25 4:52 pm
Here it is, their kickstarter video for their iems (really good, got some from that kickstarter).

https://ksr-video.imgix.net/projects/1762331/video-531185-h264_high.mp4

Note the CNC'd markings on their circular driver enclosures and the 3D printed cylinders that fit into those grooves. I guess that was their development stage, using 3D printing.

Also see the laid out pieces of their over-ear headphones - the white plastic bits have the vortex compartments. This headphone had mixed reviews, probably because it was a single driver (although the positive was a planar-like speed of delivery from a dynamic driver)... which makes Full Range completely the wrong forum for this discussion! Seems to be more a multi-way thing only.
 
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NATDBERG

Member
2006-11-25 4:52 pm
That patent is for some of their older PA set-ups, something about full range dispersion from a single stack.

These following are about the Vortex:

This first one looks like it has the more interesting diagrams and which looks more akin to their hifi speaker, rather than PA stuff

https://www.google.co.uk/patents/WO2016113561A1

PDF: https://patentscope.wipo.int/search/docservicepdf_pct/id00000034220261/PAMPH/WO2016113561.pdf


This one appears to be more to do with their square PA systems:

https://www.google.co.uk/patents/WO2014147378A1

PDF: https://patentscope.wipo.int/search/docservicepdf_pct/id00000026442377/PAMPH/WO2014147378.pdf



This one is about the compressed cabinet thing:

https://www.google.co.uk/patents/US9398356
 
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freddi

Member
Paid Member
2005-08-16 4:21 pm
could some of the alleged improvements be had with a relatively simple multichamber internally vented aperiodic arrangement which also gains stiffness from the chambers' panels? Are moderate Q woofers and effectively a sealed or aperiodic box alignment part of SB18's small size? What might hobbyists with low range woodworking skills do along Flare's lines for an experiment? With the accolades, the speakers must be quite good sounding. It would be interesting to see data.
 

BWRX

diyAudio Moderator Emeritus
2005-01-17 5:29 am
Pennsylvania
This first one looks like it has the more interesting diagrams and which looks more akin to their hifi speaker, rather than PA stuff

Thanks for the links; those are more applicable than what my search turned up.

Looks like this type of enclosure would be very difficult to build without using many layers, 3D printing, or other molding techniques.
 
Well, with some aluminium and a small tube to roll the aluminium with, someone could try it out, with a 4-inch full range maybe so the box could be small. Make a box with the back left open to fit the spiral panel. Compare it with a completely open back, with stuffing and open back, IB, etc.

Or fire the driver inside the box and measure at the open side, isolate the rear of the driver. Compare between open, stuffing, foam, and the spiral panel, see how it affects HF content.
 
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