Vertical Lobing in line array speakers: The sound quality and clarity changes as you listen at different heights in the room.
Line arrays have uneven sound quality and response in the middle and high frequencies, despite what their manufacturers would want you to hear. That’s because they usually have discontinuities at the edges of each driver unit, and because they don’t go from floor to ceiling. All this results in interferences that cloud up the sound quality. It’s simple to hear: just play some pink noise on the speaker, and listen up and down from the middle of the line array. You will notice a swishing in the sound, proving that the spectrum changes. Problem is that depending on which row you sit in a tiered theaters, you will get a different experience, none if which is probably right in the first place.
Solution: Stick to properly designed point sources, preferably with waveguides to assure even soundfield distribution.
Grimani Systems Solution:
While line arrays are all the rage in concert sound systems, and while this trend has made serious inroads in the home cinema industry, we think that vertical uniformity is too important for the enjoyment of all listeners in the room. Since these line arrays don’t provide the level of consistency and uniformity we like, we chose to stick to point-source type speakers. With proper design of our waveguides, careful selection of the crossover points and slopes, and meticulous shaping of our cabinets, we control the vertical lobing of our speakers so that you can sit at any height in front of them without the slight bit of audible variation. You are now free to get up and roam around the cinema!