Bending Wave Speakers

Bending wave speakers operate on a basic principle. For a moment, imagine throwing a stone into a lake. When the stone falls, the surface of the water suffers a destabilization caused by an impulse. The wave produced tends to spread evenly on each side. Applied to bending wave speakers, this basic principle functions too. An electrodynamic motor increases the waveform of the membrane and the waveform spreads on it. As a result, a bending wave emerges. When this happens, the air pressure changes and the human ear is able to hear an acoustic tone.

Bending Wave Speakers: How They Work

Bending wave transducers, also known as bending wave loudspeakers, involve a flexible diaphragm. Shorter waves emanate at the center of the material, which tends to be a bit more rigid than the outer part. In contrast, longer waves come from the outer edge of the speaker. A surrounding curb absorbs the long waves to avoid reflections generated on the outside. These transducers cover a wide frequency range that usually goes from 80Hz to 35,000Hz. This range is near an almost perfect point of a sound source.

Their History

The first bending wave speaker dates back to WWII: the Ohm Walsh loudspeaker. This device was a one-way speaker that used a single driver. The cone faced down into a sealed airtight gap. Moreover, the cone rippled and created a sound known as a transmission line. In consequence, the new speaker created a cylindrical sound field. Both Ohm Acoustics and German Physics have manufactured several loudspeaker versions using the Walsh driver design. At first sight, the bending wave speaker looks like a traditional speaker and the round panel attached to the voice coil bends in a carefully controlled way in order to produce a full-range sound.

If you’re interested…

There are plenty of other options for speakers. Try learning from digital, electrodynamic, full-range, mid-range, woofer, subwoofer, tweeter, and coaxial speakers. You can also consult piezoelectric, magnetostatic, magnetostrictive, and planar magnetic ones. The possibilities are endless: find the speaker that suits your needs.