Why do planar-ribbon loudspeakers sound louder than ordinary loudspeakers of the same sensitivity using the same amplifier power output?

     They sound louder because the attenuation of the sound wave during its travel through the air is less due to the greater dimensions of the planar loudspeaker drivers (membranes and ribbons). Theory stipulates that, with the exception of a small area close to the sound source called "near field", the sound wave experiences a drop of its amplitude by 6 dB for any doubling of distance. In the near field, the attenuation is only 3 dB. The near field extends to roughly 3 times the dimension of a speaker. Although this is negligible for an ordinary tweeter (a few centimeters), the near field for a 2-meter tall ribbon tweeter reaches about 6 meters. A comparison of the loudness for two different loudspeakers of the same sensitivity according to the distance from a listener is presented in the following table.

Distance: 1m 2m 4m
Ordinary Tweeter: 86dB 80dB 74dB
2 meter long ribbon: 86dB 83dB 80dB

This means that although at a 1-meter distance both loudspeaker's output is about the same, at 4 meters the planar loudspeaker sounds twice louder.

What is unique about your product?

     What makes our product unique is inherent in our product. Planar-ribbon speakers are relatively simple in concept, but very difficult to produce. There have never been more than a handful of manufacturers of full range planar-ribbon speakers at any one time. Analysis Audio pays close attention to the smallest detail. From the ultra thin protective coating (to protect the aluminum from oxidation) used on the fine aluminum used to make our drivers, to the excellent fit and finish of our casings. Even our shipping crates are exemplary.

     To my knowledge, Analysis Audio's proprietary planar bass panel is the only one with a suspension. Our system eliminates most of the distortions associated with direct membrane clamping used by others. Another unique feature of Analysis Audio speakers is that our bass panel membranes and our ribbons are 3 dimensional. This design element allows us to use the lightest materials while maintaining long-term reliability and sonic excellence.

     Our driver membranes are among the lightest in the industry. The design of our driver membranes and ribbons coupled with our use of a huge and very powerful magnet structure makes our speakers extremely accurate and very easy to drive.

     In my large showroom with a high ceiling, I typically use a pair of 60 watt mono tube amps. Another important feature of our speakers is that the impedance curve is very flat which allows the use of any high quality mid power tube amplifier. The use of low power amps is typically unheard of with full range planar-ribbon speakers.

     In our crossovers we use the finest quality components available. Our crossover design allows our drivers to work in concert instead of a sudden "hand-off" from one driver to the next. I ask everyone that comes to audition Analysis Audio loudspeakers if they can hear any crossover distortion. Everyone has stated that each loudspeaker sounds like one driver. Of course this will sound biased, but these are the comments I most often hear from our customers: Very dynamic with great dynamic contrast. Ultra fast ribbon driver. Startling impact. Extremely coherent as though each speaker has just one driver. Fastest, most accurate bass in the business. Very natural. Just plain musical.

What similarities are there between your design and other designs, past or present. Are all box speakers the same?

     Are all planar-ribbon speakers the same? Similarities are often only skin deep.There are inherent similarities in all category of speakers. Our planar-ribbon speakers were designed from the ground up using a clean sheet of paper. There may be a few visual cues that remind us of speakers from long past, but form follows function. Internally, there is no resemblance. The name and designs are original to us. Take a close look in person and you will notice that our speakers are truly unique and innovative.