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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

MBL radialstrahler
MBL radialstrahler
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Old 9th July 2019, 05:14 PM   #1
Juhazi is offline Juhazi  Finland
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Default MBL radialstrahler

The Polish magazine Audio has just published test and measurements of the flagship 101-Xtreme. I haven't had the opportunity to hear any MBL's. The article is in Polish, but we have Google translate!

MBL 101-Xtreme - Zespoły głośnikowe | Testy w Audio.com.pl

Click the image to open in full size.

Response show considerable interferences above 1kHz, but looks like room response might be adequate. Sad that this concept is extremely difficult to DIY.

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Stereophile has tested and measured an earlier model 101E MkII
MBL Radialstrahler 101E Mk.II loudspeaker | Stereophile.com
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Last edited by Juhazi; 9th July 2019 at 05:17 PM.
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Old 9th July 2019, 07:31 PM   #2
L3VY is offline L3VY  Poland
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Having so many drivers that play full 360 degrees it is hard to measure it well having to do measurements in room with walls. Hole at 2,5kHz could be crossover design frequency between drivers.

As for difficulty in making something like 101's there is at least one person in Poland that can make similar speakers with frequency response as desired. Here is his topic at Polish forum:
Wielki projekt ponad wszystkie. - strona 2 - DIY - Audiostereo.pl

I have listened them, and MBL 101D, and 101E mk2 presence of sound propagating in all dimensions is the same. Frequency response are different, because of different crossovers.
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Old 9th July 2019, 09:21 PM   #3
andy19191 is offline andy19191  Europe
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Originally Posted by Juhazi View Post
Sad that this concept is extremely difficult to DIY.
When I worked in Berlin the chap two doors away was one of the pair of people involved in the first prototypes and named in the original patent from the 70s. He told me that the inability of competitors to produce a similar product without a major financial investment in design and development was a major factor in the chap behind MBL stumping up surprisingly large sums of money to develop the product (I was told the amount but am unsure of my recollection). Over the decades this has proved to be correct and is a very rare example of technical lockout in the low tech area of home audio. The cost to develop similar transducers to compete with MBL is simply too high given the limited size of the market and so MBL get to keep it all to themselves.
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Old 9th July 2019, 10:12 PM   #4
charlie2 is offline charlie2  England
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Bollocks n shite

Marketing cows n manure

Just bull if you fall for it.

Open baffle
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Old 10th July 2019, 02:31 AM   #5
Quip is offline Quip
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Quote:
Originally Posted by andy19191 View Post
When I worked in Berlin the chap two doors away was one of the pair of people involved in the first prototypes and named in the original patent from the 70s. He told me that the inability of competitors to produce a similar product without a major financial investment in design and development was a major factor in the chap behind MBL stumping up surprisingly large sums of money to develop the product (I was told the amount but am unsure of my recollection). Over the decades this has proved to be correct and is a very rare example of technical lockout in the low tech area of home audio. The cost to develop similar transducers to compete with MBL is simply too high given the limited size of the market and so MBL get to keep it all to themselves.
While omni in typical listening rooms is a debatable choice, the Radialstrahler is a brilliant driver - a real departure from anything else. One does wonder whether the Radialstrahler principles (eg. squeezing of a curved transducer) can be applied to non-omni curved arrays like the CBT.
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Old 10th July 2019, 05:30 AM   #6
Juhazi is offline Juhazi  Finland
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The 101 Xtreme is basically two 3-way units stacked. It also has double subwoofer towers not shown here. Doubling is mostly to get higher spl without straining (high distortion compression). The inevitable problem with mirrored elements is vertical beaming and interferences. The Stereophile mesuements are mostly average of several spots, but also from a single 3-way system with less intereferences.

I see Radialstrahler as an exotic "tour-de-force" mission to stick on some dogma. Just like a BMR or electrostatic planar membrane. The sub has opposing large cone drivers, which also gives omnipole radiation in low frequencies.

The Xtreme system has some kind of sound processor for the bass tower - it has adjustment for gain and delay with values +8 - -8ms. The article doesn't reveal what kind of crossover circuits the onion-towers have, but obviously passive with adjustable values. Some of the matching problems would obviously get better with modern dsp-xo.

The markings on the panel are funny!
Click the image to open in full size.

Bass tower markings look a lot more rational
Click the image to open in full size.
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Last edited by Juhazi; 10th July 2019 at 05:34 AM.
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Old 10th July 2019, 05:41 AM   #7
JRSystems is offline JRSystems  United States
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I’ve not heard the Extreme, but have heard many MBL speakers. They are terrific speakers and there’s nothing else quite like them.
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Old 10th July 2019, 10:11 AM   #8
Jonasz is offline Jonasz  Sweden
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Heard the Extreme some ears ago, best sound I've ever encountered. Smaller models are excellent too.
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Old 10th July 2019, 03:15 PM   #9
tommus is offline tommus  United States
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You can arm-chair criticize MBL all you want but I've heard their flagship model several years ago in a very large room at a high-end show and they were amazing, in sound quality as well as retail price!
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Old 10th July 2019, 03:52 PM   #10
AVWERK is online now AVWERK  United States
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A few years back at a local hiend meet they had this same setup with the full MBL amps and driven by a custom reel to reel vs digital demo..
(Digital sucked in comparison BTW)

The guy sitting in front of us had a RTA spectrum analyzer going and you could see on every song a seagull dip throughout the midrange on every song they played

Now I dont know if the mirror image petals were cancelling at our listening distance or what,
but these are interesting speakers and for whatever reason every time I have listened to these over the years they always play them way to loud for my tastes.

These are visitors from outer space and the prices are too.

Regards
David
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