Read this tip to make your life smarter, better, faster and wiser. LifeTips is the place to go when you need to know about Tweeters and other Speakers topics.
We're talking about audio tweeters--not the kind of tweeters with beaks and wings. While hunting for your new speakers, you should become familiar with the different tweeter technologies available today. Because tweeters are responsible for reproducing the top two or three octaves of audible sound (about 2000 Hz to 20,000 Hz), they have a significant impact on the overall sound of a speaker system. A poorly designed tweeter can sound harsh and tinny, whereas a great one will add to that sense of realism all audiophiles strive to achieve.
A simple paper cone tweeter, although primitive, works very well for some applications (when you want to focus the treble in one direction). Most tweeters today are of the dome variety (textile, titanium, polymer, etc.). More exotic designs include horn-loaded drivers and planar / ribbon speakers. Tweeters must have incredible transient response (the ability to start and stop in less than a tenth of a millisecond).
Most audiophiles feel there is a definite 'flavor' difference between the various types of tweeters. You should audition all types to hear which sound best in your listening room or home theater.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|