Sound System Design and Optimization
FEKT-MPC-SD2Acad. year: 2019/2020
Objectives of sound system design. Building blocks of sound systems from the point of view of the sound spectrum and space location. Features of subwoofers. Subbase point source, line source. Beam-steering. Subbase point source array. Cardioid subbase array, advanced subbase arrays. Detailed specifications for the sound system requirements. Channel types of audio systems. Classification of sources according to the sound pressure level. Horizontal coverage, beam angle and horizontal routing of speakers. Sound system optimization in real space. Vertical coverage, main array types - the main element of the PA system. Sound design using a separate box using coupled point source array. Solution of vertical asymmetry, composite element. Sound design using an asymmetric composite point source array. Minimization of spectral variance, beam-steering of low frequencies coupled point source array.
Learning outcomes of the course unit
On completion of the course, students are able to:
- describe building blocks of sound systems,
- explain methods of shaping directional characteristics of sound systems,
- specify the sound system requirements for a particular space,
- design a field of bound spherical resources for optimal horizontal and vertical coverage of space,
- design a line source for optimal horizontal and vertical coverage.
Basic knowledge of sound system design, knowledge of the basics of sound physics and the way of mutual interaction of sound waves, knowledge of basic properties of building blocks of sound systems and their use are required.
Recommended optional programme components
Recommended or required reading
McCARTHY, Bob. Sound Systems: Design and Optimization, 2nd Edition. 566 stran. Focal Press; 2009, ISBN: 978-0240521565 (CS)
EVEREST, F. Alton. Master handbook of acoustics. 4. vyd. McGraw-Hill/TAB Electronics. 615 stran. 2001. ISBN 978-0071603324 (CS)
RAICHEL, Daniel R., Science and application of acoustic, second edition. Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 647 stran. 2006. ISBN: 978-0387-26062-4 (CS)
DAVIS, D., PATRONIS, E. Jr., BROWN, P., Sound system engineering, fourth edition. 627 stran. Focal Press; 2013, ISBN: 978-0-240-81846-7 (CS)
Planned learning activities and teaching methods
Teaching methods depend on the type of course unit as specified in article 7 of the BUT Rules for Studies and Examinations.
- Lectures provide explanations of the basic principles, subject methodology, examples of problems and their solutions.
- Laboratory exercises support practical mastering of the themes presented in lectures. Active participation of students is required.
Participation in lectures is recommended. Participation in other ways of instruction is checked.
Course is taking advantage of e-learning (Moodle) system.
Assesment methods and criteria linked to learning outcomes
Evaluation of study results follow the BUT Rules for Studies and Examinations and Dean's Regulation complementing the BUT Rules for Studies and Examinations. Up to 20 points are awarded for the tests in theoretical knowledge in the laboratory exercises. Up to 20 points can be obtained for correct results and elaboration of all laboratory exercises. The minimal scope of the elaboration of a particular laboratory exercise and the complementary questions are specified by a regulation issued by the guarantor of the course and updated for every academic year. Up to 60 points are given for the final written examination, and it is necessary to get at least 20 points for its successful completion.
Language of instruction
1. Goals of sound system design. Building blocks of sound systems from the point of view of the sound spectrum and space location. Phase subtraction, subwoofer properties - frequency range, dimensions, radiation characteristics, polarity. Parallel pyramid. Subbase point source, line source. Distance 1lambda.
2. Beam-steering - shaping directional characteristics. Level tapering, delay tapering, subbase point source array. Cardioid subbase array - end-fire setup, gradient setup, advanced sub-bass setup.
3. Detailed specifications for audio system requirements. Channel types of audio systems according to audio content. Classification of sources according to the sound pressure level. The ratio of the acoustic pressure of the main PA and the subwoofer.
4. Horizontal coverage, FAR, beam angle and horizontal routing of speakers, simple source vs. composite source, symmetry, asymmetry. Sound system optimization in real space.
5. Vertical coverage, start and end of coverage, main array types - the main element of the PA system, advantages and disadvantages, ways of use. Vertical routing, angling, distance compensation. Sound design with a separate box, coupled point source array design.
6. Vertical asymmetry solution, liner source design, line source segment, linear source composite element, splay, element directionality, ONAX composite element, crossover types of composite elements. Sound design using an asymmetric composite point source array. Minimization of spectral variance, beam-steering of low frequencies coupled point source array.
The subject follows the introduction given in subject Fundamentals of Sound Systems Design. The aim of the course is to acquaint students with real sound systems. During the lectures and subsequent practical exercises the students will gradually pass the process of design of sound systems of different sizes from the initial simulation and the decision about the selection of suitable means to the realization of the system and its optimization in the given space.
Specification of controlled education, way of implementation and compensation for absences
It is obligatory to undergo all laboratory exercises in regular or alternative terms to complete the course. Other forms of checked instruction are specified by a regulation issued by the guarantor of the course and updated for every academic year.