directional sound

You've seen ripples spreading out when you prod the surface of a still pond with your finger? That happens because the waves of energy you're putting into the water travel outward in all directions: the spreading, diverging pattern of waves is called diffraction. The further the waves travel, the bigger the area over which their energy spreads. Eventually, the waves have so little energy that they disappear completely. Exactly the same diffraction process happens with sound waves. Whether you shout with your voice or pump sound through a loudspeaker, the sound waves spread outward from the source and their energy is gradually dissipated.

Directional speakers work in an entirely different way from conventional loudspeakers. The biggest difference is that they don't produce ordinary, audible sound waves with a single, moving electromagnetic coil and cone. Instead, they generate ultrasound (high-frequency sound waves) that are too high pitched for our ears to hear using an array of electrical devices called piezoelectric transducers. These are simply crystals, such as quartz, that vibrate back and forth tens of thousands of times a second when you feed electric currents through them, producing very high frequencies of sound. Ultrasound is used because its higher-frequency waves have a correspondingly shorter wavelength and diffract (spread out) less as they travel, which means they stay together in a beam for longer than ordinary sound would. Also, having an array of many, small transducers makes sound diffract less than it would do from a single, large transducer (for reasons briefly explained in this article on directional sound).

Effectively, then, the ultrasound travels out from a directional speaker in a narrowly focused column, like a flashlight beam. But when it hits something, it turns back into ordinary sound you can hear.

Audio Spotlight


Now featuring built-in amplifier, on-board playback, IR remote control, and advanced audio processing capabilities.

Any sound that misses your intended audience is noise. Only the Audio Spotlight system can keep sound focused specifically to your listeners, providing sound where you want it, and quiet everywhere else.

The revolutionary Audio Spotlight technology creates a tight, narrow beam of sound that can be controlled with the same precision as light. Aim the flat, thin speaker to your desired listening area and provide all of the sound – with none of the noise.

Since 2000, Audio Spotlight systems have been installed in thousands of locations around the world. From museums, exhibits, galleries and retail stores to digital signage and special projects, the world's top companies have chosen the unique, patented Audio Spotlight technology to provide high-quality, precisely targeted sound.

We are now proud to offer a fully integrated, all-in-one speaker package featuring built-in amplifier/processor, on-board playback via microSD, LCD display with metering, IR remote control, and a variety of mounting options. For a more complete list of features and detailed specifications, please visit our Products page.

No loudspeaker can ever approach the directivity of Audio Spotlight technology.

The Audio Spotlight uses a beam of ultrasound as a "virtual acoustic source", enabling unprecedented control of sound distribution. The graph to the right shows the real sound field of the Audio Spotlight versus the theoretical maximum directivity of any loudspeaker, panel, dome, or "shower" of the same size. As shown by this comparison, no loudspeaker in the world can approach the level of control provided by Audio Spotlight technology.