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Measurement of Turbulent Air Noise Distortion in Loudspeaker Systems

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Air leaks in the dust cap and cabinets of loudspeakers generate turbulent noise which highly impairs the perceived sound quality as rub and buzz and other loudspeaker defects do. However, traditional measurement techniques often fail in the detection of air leaks because the noise has a large spectral bandwidth but a low power density and similar spectral properties as ambient noise generated in a production environment. The paper models the generation process of turbulent air noise and develops a novel measurement technique based on asynchronous demodulation and envelope averaging. The technique accumulates the total energy of the leak noise radiated during the measurement interval and increases the sensitivity by more than 20 dB for measurement times larger than 1s. The paper also presents the results of the practical evaluation and discusses the application to end-of-line testing.

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