Audio Terminology And Definitions Dictionary
Back EMF The rear electromotive force from loudspeaker drive units.
Speaker A single speaker or pair of speakers
placed behind the listening position in a 6.1 or 7.1 channel home theater
The flat or mildly curved front panel of a conventional loudspeaker enclosure
that holds one or more active drivers. Some loudspeakers have drivers mounted on
more than one surface. Technically, each surface on which a driver is mounted is
a baffle, but the term is usually reserved to the surface holding the most
Balanced In a balanced electrical circuit the positive
and negative conducting paths are referenced to earth equally. The advantages of balanced operation are improved signal to noise ratio and distortion
compared with unbalanced circuits. In analog signal transfer, the XLR connection
A continuous range of frequencies that defines a circuit's ability to transmit
that range without adding artifacts. For example, the band of bass frequencies
is usually defined as beginning at 20 Hz and extending to approximately 200 Hz.
Bandwidth A range of frequencies defined by its highest and lowest limits. The audio bandwidth of human
hearing has traditionally been defined as 20 Hz to 20 kHz. In pure electronic terms, the width of a communication channel, measured as frequency (in cycles per second,
or Hertz). A channels bandwidth is a major factor in determining how much information it can carry.
The lowest audible band of frequencies, running from about 20 Hz to 200 Hertz.
A type of loudspeaker enclosure in which a vent or port from inside the cabinet
connects the "backwave" from the woofer's rear surface to the outside
environment. This vent "loads" the woofer to augment bass response. Unless
very carefully configured, a bass reflex enclosure may not provide the same
accuracy as an acoustic suspension enclosure, even though the bass reflex
enclosure may well be more efficient in generating bass frequencies.
Belt-Drive Turntables fitted with a belt between the drive motor pulley and the record-supporting platter. A
belt is used to isolate the pickup cartridge from motor noise. It is traditionally regarded as the best way to
maintain rotational speed stability at audio frequencies.
BER Bit Error Rate. The ratio of received bits that are
in error, relative to a specific amount of bits received; usually expressed as a number referenced to a power of 10.
Bias A high frequency AC signal applied to the record head of a tape recorder to help it record a wide bandwidth linear signal onto magnetic tape.
Binaural Associated with a type of recording made using a dummy head fitted with microphones located at
the position of the two ears. Replay of binaural recordings via headphones is considered to enhance a sense of 'out of the head' definition in contrast to the normal 'inside the head' sound using headphones.
Binding Post A device for clamping or holding electrical
conductors, such as wire, in a rigid position.
A loudspeaker that radiates equal amounts of
energy with the same polarity in two opposite directions (i.e., in phase). The
compressions and rarefactions that constitute sound waves move outward from each
side of the enclosure symmetrically (i.e., both sides of the enclosure produce a
positive pulse or a negative pulse at the same time). (See also: dipolar;
also refers to a particular type of transistor.)
When used as a specification for compressed audio files, bitrate is the average
amount of data required to store one second of music (expressed in kilobits per
second, or Kbps). Some codecs like MP3, WMA, and AAC allow files to be encoded
at different bitrates. Generally, as the bitrate decreases, so do the sound
quality of the resulting file and the amount of memory required to store it.
bitstream refers to binary bits of information (1s and 0s) that have been
transferred from one device to another. Specifically, bitstream refers to the
transferring of a digitally encoded Dolby Digital or DTS-related compressed
audio signal from a source component (such as a DVD or Blu-ray player, or an
HD-Cable or HD-Satellite Box) to a surround processor for decoding and
distribution to the amplifier. Bitstreams are usually transmitted via optical or
coaxial digital links, or an HDMI interface.
A one-bit or low-bit A/D and D/A oversampling
conversion method developed by Philips in which the audio signal is represented
through either PDM (pulse density modulation) or time averaging at a frequency
of 11.3 MHz.
A wiring configuration between amplifier and loudspeaker that uses two separate
signal paths from the amp's output terminals to separate inputs for bass and
higher frequencies on the speaker end. The sonic benefits of bi-wiring are often
Blu-ray Regional Codes
Blu-ray discs are coded in a similar fashion to the system used for DVDs.
However, instead of the eight official regions used for coding
DVDs, Blu-ray Discs have only three regions, designated as follows:
· Region A: U.S., Japan, Latin America, East Asia
· Region B: Europe, Africa, Australia, New
· Region C: China, Russia, remaining countries
Note that many Blu-ray discs do not have regional coding and
may play on any Blu-ray machine.
(Windows Bitmap Image) A standard format used for storing images on
Windows-based PCs. BMP images can either be compressed or uncompressed. This
type of file sometimes appears with the .dib extension.
Bridged Mode Some
amplifiers have the ability to be operated in a "bridged mode," which
inverts one channel of a stereo amplifier and places it in parallel with the
other channel, in effect turning the amplifier into a mono unit. This increases
the amplifier's output voltage, which results in up to triple the rated output
power available in stereo mode. Note: When operating an amplifier in "bridged
mode," use only nominal 8 Ohm loudspeakers.
A term often used to describe the sound of a component (speaker,
amplifier, phono cartridge, etc.) that exhibits an accentuated or elevated
midrange/treble sonic characteristic.