How Do Speakers Work: Top Full Guide 2023

How Do Speakers Work Top Full Guide 2023
  • Anthony

A speaker is a transducer. These are devices that convert electrical energy into sound waves. To learn more about How Do Speakers Work, Join Hookeaudio to explore what is inside a speaker? Speakers are an often overlooked part of the excellent system. The materials that act as the outer skin of the speaker determine the quality of the sound that emanates from it. The outer skin also prevents other textiles from leaking out the sound, the speaker and tweeter should be creating. 

What Is Inside a Speaker?

What Is Inside a Speaker

The following components make up most traditional speakers. They work together to produce sound.

  • Permanent magnet: This provides a magnetic field around the voice coil that allows movement.
  • Voice coil and Bobbin: A round tube attached at the bottom of the cone is the bobbin. The voice coil is a very long, tightly wound coil of wire that creates a magnetic field when electricity flows through it. This happens from the musical signal coming from an amplifier.
  • Spider: The spider is also known as suspension; the spider is a thin, wavy-shaped material that holds the voice coil assembly together and pushes the cone back into place when it moves.
  • Cone (diaphragm), dust cap: This is a cone-shaped, stiff material that’s moved together by the magnet and voice coil to create sound. The dust cap is a thin material that covers the opening at the center. It protects against dirt and dust.
  • Speaker basket: The basket is a frame made of cast metal or stamped steel that holds the speaker parts together and keeps them aligned. The basket can also be used to mount the speaker assembly on a box.
  • Braided wire and speaker terminals: Speaker terminals are metal connectors that connect the speaker wire with the speaker. These are connected to the voice coil by flexible braided wire, which moves with the cone.
  • Surround: This flexible, durable, circular material (usually rubber or some other type of foam) connects the cone’s top edge to the basket.

What Does a Speaker Cone Do?

What Does a Speaker Cone Do

The main component of a speaker is called a speaker cone or a diaphragm. It creates a surround sound wave by moving air rapidly back and forth, creating sound electromagnetic radiation.

These cones are usually made from lightweight but rigid materials such as pressed paper and plastics, carbon fiber, or thin metal.

The name cone refers to the shape of the cone: An inverted cone with a central opening that houses the bobbin and voice coil assemblies.

To prevent contaminants from getting in, a dust cap is placed over the door at the bottom of the cone. Both are supported at the bottom with a rigid but flexible material, sometimes called the spider.

The speaker’s design and type will determine the kind of speaker. Subwoofers, a bass speaker, for example, the speaker produces very high bass sound waves and significant air movement. They require a thicker and more rigid design.

For high-frequency sound, tweeters, on the other hand, use a smaller, dome-shaped, and lighter design because they can produce a more comprehensive sound range using smaller speaker electromagnetic radiation.

What Does a Speaker Magnet Do?

What Does a Speaker Magnet Do

Loudspeaker magnets usually consist of a permanent (often a ceramic or neodymium-type magnetic material) with a narrow circular gap where the coil is suspended. The interest creates a magnetic field that attracts and repels the coil.

The coil creates a magnetic field, which is a little like an electromagnet. Ceramic magnets, although more significant, are cheaper.

However, neodymium magnets tend to be more robust (with denser magnetic fields), while ceramic magnets can be more expensive. Ceramic magnets are popular because they can be used as car speakers.

Some speaker magnets, but not all, have a hole in their center that allows air to circulate the coil and keeps it cool.

What Is a Dual Voice Coil Speaker?

What Is a Dual Voice Coil Speaker

Dual voice coil speakers allow for a second voice coil winding on the same speaker system as the voice coil bobbin assembly. These speakers offer additional options than single-coil speakers.

You can be flexible in how they are wired (two ohms or four ohms etc.) to improve compatibility with stereo receivers and amplifiers.

You can use two or more amplifiers to power subwoofers and other prominent speakers. This is a lot more than you can do with a single voice coil model.

These amplifiers can drive them with two channels. They can’t be connected for more power.

Subwoofers with dual voice coil versions are more common and cost a bit more.

They offer more wiring options than single voice coil (SVC), but they don’t provide better performance.

Speakers such as tweeters for treble and mid-range sound for instruments and vocals don’t usually come in dual voice coil version

How Does Speaker Work?

How Does Speaker Work

The principle of speakers is to convert electric  energy into mechanical energy (motion). The mechanical energy compresses the air and transforms it into sound energy, or a good air pressure level (SPL).

A magnetic field is created when an electric current passes through a voice coil made of wire.

A current flows through speakers and creates an electric field. This vector field interacts with the speaker’s magnet.

Similar charges repel one another, while different charges attract. The attracts and repels the voice coil as it sends a sound signal through this wire.

The cone to which the voice coil is attached moves back and forth. This creates pressure electromagnetic radiation within the air, which we perceive as sound quality.

Here is a step-by-step explanation of how do it work.

  • Starting at the zero output point, an output voltage representing the musical waveform begins and starts to rise. The speaker’s microphone coil starts to flow from the opposing side to the positive side of the electrical current.
  • The vector field created around the voice coil is the same polarity of the permanent magnet attached to the speaker basket frame. Remember that opposites attract and repel identical magnetic fields.
  • The cone/diaphragm starts moving forward and creates pressure which causes sound.
  • The voltage of an electronic signal  (the sound recording) increases towards the top of a sine wave in the musical cues. This causes the current to grow and the vector field strength of the voice coil to increase.
  • This causes the cone to expand even more.
  • The audio signal passes the highest output level and begins to fall. The current begins to fall, and the cone will return to its original (zero voltage).
  • The original signal reaches zero, also known as the “zero voltage crossing threshold,” and the cone returns to its original position.
  • As the electrical signal changes to a positive voltage, it reverses. This causes current to flow from the negative side of the voice coil to the positive creating a reversed magnetic field.
  • The permanent magnet attracts the wire, so the cone moves from the front to the rear instead of the original rear-to-front.
  • The cone reverses as the signal continues, and creates sound waves caused by the movement.
  • As the signal voltage increases, the amp or stereo output goes back to zero. The following sound signal starts, and the cycle begins again.
  • Speakers are essentially electric motors. They are powered by an electrical signal and transform it into a mechanical output.

What Is Frequency Response? Why Is It Important?

Frequency Response

Frequency response refers to how loudspeakers output will be at different frequencies.

One way to test a certain frequency response is to send out a range of sound frequencies, starting with the bass and moving up to the mid-range. Then you can check if the sound coming from the speaker is consistent in all areas.

A speaker’s ideal frequency response is very flat. This would mean that the speaker would sound good the same at low frequencies as at mids and highs.

Low-frequency response is designed to ensure that people who listen to your music have the same experience you had. A well-mastered track will sound great on low-frequency response speakers.

Why Are Speakers Mounted in Boxes?

A speaker driver’s cone creates pressure waves from both the frontage and the back when it moves. It pushes air towards you and creates a positive pressure wave. However, it also pulls air behind it, creating negative pressure waves.

The air pressure waves created by the two speaker drivers will cancel each other out if the wavelength corresponding with the reproduced signal’s frequency response is larger than the size of their speaker driver.

The low frequencies (bass) are inaudible at any distance. You can try it at home by removing the speaker driver from the speaker enclosure. The speaker will sound “tinny” compared to the way it was said before assembly.

To ensure that a speaker can function at all high frequencies, it is necessary to prevent the sound pressure level

wave from the back of the speaker cone from canceling out the pressure wave generated by the cone.

The same effect could be achieved if the speaker driver was mounted in a rigid, large-sized piece of material (a baffle).

To prevent low-frequency range cancellation, a baffle must be significant. This is not practical in most speakers. Closed speaker boxes are a helpful and more efficient way to do this.

The low-frequency ranges behavior for an assembled closed box loudspeaker is determined by combining the mechanical properties and the size of the speaker cabinet.

The box acts as a spring, pushing and pulling against the cone. It has a resonance frequency below which it loses significant output.

Why Do Some Speakers Have Holes in Them?

Why Do Some Speakers Have Holes in Them

Many speaker boxes are equipped with slots or circular holes in their front and back. You are looking at ports or vents. This is what you call a bass reflex enclosure.

The bass reflex enclosure functions in the same way that you blow air on a beer bottle to make a note sound. Because the volume of the air within the bottle changes, the note will change with liquid.

The message would also change if you could stretch the bottle’s neck. You can tune the resonant frequency system by changing the port dimensions (bottleneck) and the loudspeakers enclosure volume (bottle).

Tuning correctly will create a resonance below the loudspeakers response would generally roll-off, effectively increasing the system’s bass performance.

Port tuning must be explicitly calculated for each enclosure and speaker driver to ensure that this works. The speaker box and port tuning won’t active if you swap the speaker single driver for another type, even if they have the same cone-diameter.

Passive radiator-based loudspeakers made a sound with the same principle but have a mass-loaded speaker cone that creates the bass resonance and enclosed volume.


How Do Audio Speakers Work FAQs

How do a Bluetooth speaker work?

A wireless Bluetooth speaker works by pairing it with a Bluetooth-enabled device like an iPhone, iPad, or laptop.

It’s important to note that not all Bluetooth-enabled devices can be paired to wireless speakers.

The home theater speaker will work with any device with the Bluetooth logo and supports A2DP (advanced sound distribution profile).

What is the Difference Between Passive and Active Speakers?

A passive speaker does not use its power to amplify sound. Instead, they use an external power source, usually an amplifier. Passive speakers are used for applications where sound amplification is not required, such as in some television systems.

Active speakers are designed with their amplifiers and are typically used in sound reinforcement or public address applications. Active speakers use an external power source to amplify sound.

Passive speakers only require the sound from a source to be amplified. Active speakers have amplifiers and often have a dedicated power source that cannot be switched off.

How do you use a speaker?

You can use a home theater speaker for all sorts of different things. For example, you can place it on your desk and play music from your phone or home speakers

You can use a speaker for all sorts of different things. You can put it on your desk and play music from your phone or tablet.

How do computer speakers work?

A speaker uses electricity to create an electromagnetic field that moves back and forth, vibrating the air.

A speaker uses electricity to create an electromagnetic field that moves back and forth, shaking the air. This is because vibrations in the atmosphere create sound waves.

The speaker can be mounted on the inside of the computer so that the sound output is directed toward the user, or it can be mounted on the outside of the case so that the sound is projected outward

Where did 4 ohms and 8-ohm speakers come from?

Car stereo systems are most commonly equipped with 4-ohm speakers and 2-ohm speakers. This practice started long before the first cars were manufactured.

It is more difficult to produce power for separate speakers in cars because they require a lower voltage (12V) than home stereos, which have plenty of voltage.

For home stereo speakers, 8 ohms are the most common. Home stereos use a higher voltage source (110V in the USA), making them easier to design and power more impedance (8ohm) speakers. These Ohm ratings were standard in both car and traditional speakers.


When the speakers work, the voice coils transfer energy to the cone, which vibrates and causes airwaves to propagate from the aperture in the front. This electromagnetic radiation travels through the air and strikes our eardrums, causing the three bones of the middle ear to vibrate.

Speakers are devices that have been created to amplify sound waves. They have been around for a long time and have improved dramatically since their inception. We hope that our article can help you learn more about the sound system.


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