Atlantic Technology H-PAS

At the first press conference of the show, Atlantic Technology unveiled a new speaker technology called H-PAS (Hybrid Pressure Acceleration System), which purports to significantly increase the bass extension, dynamic range, and efficiency of just about any speaker while reducing the distortion with nothing more than a sophisticated acoustic chamber within the cabinet—no electronics. Developed in conjunction with speaker maker Solus/Clements, the system combines elements of horn loading, transmission lines, bass reflex, and acoustic suspension—hence "Hybrid" in the name. The frequency response of the chamber actually increases as the response of the driver decreases at lower frequencies, resulting in a very flat overall response from 70Hz down to a frequency that depends on the specific driver.

To prove the point, AT's Peter Tribeman played CDs through a pair of prototype speakers with twin 4.5-inch "woofers" and a 1-inch dome tweeter on top and a big port on the bottom with a scrap of paper placed inside as depicted in the photo above. The bass extension on things like Pictures at an Exhibition played on a cathedral organ was astonishing. According to Tribeman, H-PAS allows those little 4.5-inch drivers to reach all the way down to 31Hz (-3dB at 28Hz). The low notes definitely fluttered the paper in the port, but it didn't fly out—rather, it flopped around inside, demonstrating that the air was moving in concert with the driver. And the drivers themselves were moving very little, which leads to lower distortion. No consumer products were announced, but we could see some at CES.

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COMMENTS
Seth G.'s picture

Is H-PAS something that Atlantic plans to use exclusively in their products or is it something they plan on licensing and were just a development partner with Solus/Clements. I am curious how this idea is related to REL's ARM loading I'm sure there are some similarities, but wonder if it takes the idea and moves it farther along with some added elements. Either way its always exciting to see new developments like this! I'm sure the full range driver would love to have access to this kind of loading cabinet design as well as many of the DIY fans who Fostex, Lowther, and Feastrex driver units. I can even see a great use of the design being made by a company like Audience with their ClairAudient line.

Scott Wilkinson's picture

I was told there are currently five licensees, and more are expected to sign up soon. I agree that it's a very exciting technology.

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