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Author Topic: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?  (Read 1480 times)

Helge A Bentsen

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #10 on: February 23, 2021, 04:43:45 am »

For a short to medium throw application I'd rather have a system like this than a dash array.  Got very good results with Meyer JM1P, Clair kit curve, EAW JFL213 on various jobs and installs. The proper ARCS (II) works well also, but not the cheap ones (focus/wide).
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Brian Bolly

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #11 on: February 23, 2021, 05:38:34 am »

I'm curious because I have never heard them, and of course I have heard amazing sounding UPA boxes from Meyer years ago.  Would the UPQ/UPJ system get loud enough for, say, a reasonably loud(ish) band in a 100' square ballroom?

Depends on what your definition of loud(ish) is, but 1 UPQ-1D + 1 UPJ-1P ballparks about 94dBA avg +/-3 with +12.5 dB headroom.  That would work fine for me.

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Though I would imagine that the Martin CC with iK processing and amplification, and putting each CC box on its own amplifier channel, would have more processing tricks up its sleeve managing the negative interactions between the loudspeakers within the array.  As compared to two different Meyer boxes interacting within one hang.

A multi-box integrated hang where the rigging takes care of the physical placement would certainly have its advantages, but the processing in the Galaxy is more than enough to take care of doing alignment of the system, as the processing for the boxes themselves lies within the internal amps. 

A slightly better comparison might be the newer ULTRA-X42 where you can array a pair of them together horizontally or vertically, or even an ULTRA-X42 and ULTRA-X20, but the narrower dimension of their horns are only 50, so a bit less focused than the Martin box.  Or, as Helge points out, the JM-1P.  But, it has it's tradeoffs in size/weight.

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I do wish there were more Meyer houses around me but it is (was pre-COVID) a rare day I got to hear them.

Jason

*waves from Maryland*   8)

If you guys (and/or Steve & Co) end up with some of the Torus boxes, I'm up for a shop listening session at some point. 
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Robert Healey

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #12 on: February 23, 2021, 11:21:04 am »

For a short to medium throw application I'd rather have a system like this than a dash array.  Got very good results with Meyer JM1P, Clair kit curve, EAW JFL213 on various jobs and installs. The proper ARCS (II) works well also, but not the cheap ones (focus/wide).

Isn't the JM-1P a point source box with a big horn that lets you get the narrow 20 degree pattern down to a reasonable frequency?
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Helge A Bentsen

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #13 on: February 23, 2021, 03:39:11 pm »

Isn't the JM-1P a point source box with a big horn that lets you get the narrow 20 degree pattern down to a reasonable frequency?

Could be, I'm not sure where one would draw the line between a constant curvature array and arrayable point source :)

OTOH this might be why I still think the JM1P sounds great compared to a couple of other constant curvature arrays.
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Russell Ault

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #14 on: February 23, 2021, 05:02:44 pm »

Isn't the JM-1P a point source box with a big horn that lets you get the narrow 20 degree pattern down to a reasonable frequency?

I mean, not any more so than any other constant-curvature box.

In my mind, the defining characteristics of constant-curvature (vs. traditional point-source) are:
  • The angle of the box's trapezoid is the same as the horn's dispersion angle
  • The horn contains some kind of acoustic device that ensures the distance (and therefore travel time) from the HF driver(s) to any point on an imaginary arc of the dispersion angle is roughly the same
  • It's straightforward to array/rig
  • Multiple boxes arrayed together look like a single, cohesive unit

The JM-1P uses Meyer's "Ribbon Emulation Manifold" in its horn, so it counts. :)

-Russ
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Peter Morris

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #15 on: February 23, 2021, 06:47:21 pm »

A different take on line-array and constant curvature arrays As a live sound contactor what you need is a collection of boxes to various jobs.  Ideally the smaller boxes should be able to be moved by one person, the larger boxes by two people, and never require more than four people.

The problem occurs when one of these well sized boxes a side is not loud enough, so you use two or more boxes.  The next problem is these boxes dont generally combine that well. 

This is where the line array or constant curvature array comes in essentially I see them as just a better way of put reasonable sized boxes/components together to make things louder.

The line array because of its variable curvature and all the issues of getting multiple drivers to combine is not perfect, but it works, and its a much better solution than those massive stacks of point source box we used in the1980s. 

The constant curvature array should have fewer compromises because the angle is fixed.  Essentially it just a narrow point source box designed to array with other matching point source boxes.

The only other option is to put all the drivers in one box Danley style.  This solves a bunch of acoustic problems, but you end up with a very big and heavy box with a fixed coverage pattern; and it gets very loud when you get up close.  Depending on your situation this may or may not be a great solution.

Pick your compromise.

Talking of the Martin box, I love how they have articulated the horn flare as it changes patterns.  Having 2 / 3 coverage patterns should increase the flexibility of this deign making it a great tool for your inventory.
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Russell Ault

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #16 on: February 23, 2021, 09:22:34 pm »

{...}
The line array because of its variable curvature and all the issues of getting multiple drivers to combine is not perfect, but it works, and its a much better solution than those massive stacks of point source box we used in the1980s. 

The constant curvature array should have fewer compromises because the angle is fixed.  Essentially it just a narrow point source box designed to array with other matching point source boxes.

The only other option is to put all the drivers in one box Danley style.  This solves a bunch of acoustic problems, but you end up with a very big and heavy box with a fixed coverage pattern; and it gets very loud when you get up close.  Depending on your situation this may or may not be a great solution.

Pick your compromise.
{...}

This sounds about right to me. The only thing I'd add, especially as it pertains to constant-curvature vs. variable-curvature, is that constant-curvature arrays basically require gain shading to avoid the "very loud when you get up close" problem (if that is, indeed, a problem). Gain shading only really works for frequencies coming through the horn, though, and won't do much (good, anyway) below the crossover frequency. Conversely, an appropriately-sized and -processed variable-curvature array can effectively control the dispersion characteristics of frequencies well below what the horns are guiding.

-Russ
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Luke Geis

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #17 on: February 23, 2021, 11:14:54 pm »

Constant curvature arrays do solve an intermediate issue that exists between PS systems and LA systems. A constant curvature system could be viewed as being a PS system that is designed for scale and to have elemental control in order to achieve coverage characteristics.

Where a PS system would either be too bulky, cumbersome, or unsightly ( Trap boxes don't look good when stacked on top of subs ) A constant curvature array can slim it down and at least look somewhat like a coherent system. Conversely, where an LA system would simply be too much, overkill, or simply not be effective anyway, a CC array can again slim the profile down, look clean and coherent. Whether it actually performs like a PS or a LA is irrelevant at that point; the form was chosen over function.

Where I do feel CCA systems work, is at the very least, there can be some amount of amplitude shading. The idea of a reducing coverage pattern as you go to a higher ( in the stack ) box is also a clever idea. You could kind of consider this to be divergence shading in a way. While CCA systems have little or no benefits of either of their borrowed concepts ( PS and LA ), they meet in the middle to give you something that meets in the middle.

I do feel strongly that MANY CCA systems are wrongly deployed or relied upon because they can be sold or marketed to the unknowing as a LA system. The look and buzz about LA systems are appealing to those who have basic knowledge or idea of sound principles. It also makes money for speaker companies that know there is a high percentage of them improperly applied but will fly off the shelf anyway. As long as the end client is happy, who cares.

The first CCA system I came across was the JBL VRX. Since then I have used at least three other designs. Neither was much better than the other. They just weren't sophisticated enough. No digital control, no mapping or real prediction software, and no real application of science to make them truly a functional and effective tool. They all just seemed to be a blunt object that would bludgeon it's way to the finish line, but look good doing it.
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Jim McKeveny

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #18 on: February 24, 2021, 10:17:36 am »

Constant curvature arrays do solve an intermediate issue that exists between PS systems and LA systems. A constant curvature system could be viewed as being a PS system that is designed for scale and to have elemental control in order to achieve coverage characteristics.

Where a PS system would either be too bulky, cumbersome, or unsightly ( Trap boxes don't look good when stacked on top of subs ) A constant curvature array can slim it down and at least look somewhat like a coherent system. Conversely, where an LA system would simply be too much, overkill, or simply not be effective anyway, a CC array can again slim the profile down, look clean and coherent. Whether it actually performs like a PS or a LA is irrelevant at that point; the form was chosen over function.

Where I do feel CCA systems work, is at the very least, there can be some amount of amplitude shading. The idea of a reducing coverage pattern as you go to a higher ( in the stack ) box is also a clever idea. You could kind of consider this to be divergence shading in a way. While CCA systems have little or no benefits of either of their borrowed concepts ( PS and LA ), they meet in the middle to give you something that meets in the middle.

I do feel strongly that MANY CCA systems are wrongly deployed or relied upon because they can be sold or marketed to the unknowing as a LA system. The look and buzz about LA systems are appealing to those who have basic knowledge or idea of sound principles. It also makes money for speaker companies that know there is a high percentage of them improperly applied but will fly off the shelf anyway. As long as the end client is happy, who cares.

The first CCA system I came across was the JBL VRX. Since then I have used at least three other designs. Neither was much better than the other. They just weren't sophisticated enough. No digital control, no mapping or real prediction software, and no real application of science to make them truly a functional and effective tool. They all just seemed to be a blunt object that would bludgeon it's way to the finish line, but look good doing it.

Luke gets the award for best answer.

Maybe I'm just getting crochety. Maybe its the pandemic. CCA boxes just seem (to me) like a spendy, worst-of-both-worlds compromise. Mid-distance HF coherence with dis-integrated midrange performance seems an unappealing "solution", like a those clamshell packaged Shure PG48's at Best Buy when a real 58 is needed. The client walks away with something that appears to fit the bill...

« Last Edit: February 24, 2021, 10:24:18 am by Jim McKeveny »
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jason misterka

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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #19 on: February 24, 2021, 11:47:52 pm »


Brian-

Sorry for the delay in reply.  Actually have a good deal of work to plan for in April all of the sudden... surprise surprise.

Depends on what your definition of loud(ish) is, but 1 UPQ-1D + 1 UPJ-1P ballparks about 94dBA avg +/-3 with +12.5 dB headroom.  That would work fine for me.
A multi-box integrated hang where the rigging takes care of the physical placement would certainly have its advantages, but the processing in the Galaxy is more than enough to take care of doing alignment of the system, as the processing for the boxes themselves lies within the internal amps. 

I am sure the Galaxy is amazing for alignment, but the Martin software and processing is a bit of a different thing than you or I shading, delaying, and adjusting the EQ between boxes in an array to "Align the system".



*waves from Maryland*   8)

If you guys (and/or Steve & Co) end up with some of the Torus boxes, I'm up for a shop listening session at some point.

Yeah, that would be great.  I don't know when we will be getting Torus given the current world we live in, but I'd love to touch and hear some Meyer boxes either way.

Jason
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Re: "Constant Curvature" Boxes...?
« Reply #19 on: February 24, 2021, 11:47:52 pm »


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