CE Pro August 2022 - 16

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PSB Speakers, Paul
Barton Celebrate
50 Years
Lenbrook brand PSB Speakers has
leveraged founder and chief designer
Paul Barton's loudspeaker product
evolution for a half-century.
By Robert Archer
THERE AREN'T MANY
brands in consumer electronics
that match the 50-year
legacy of Lenbrook brand
PSB Speakers.
The company's humble beginnings
can be traced back
to when founder and chief
designer Paul Barton was still
a student in school. Today,
PSB Speakers is well-known
for its product line that includes
everything from subwoofers
and in-wall speakers,
to active speakers and
reference-level floorstanding
loudspeakers. Barton took
time to reflect on his and the
company's legacy in a recent
CE Pro Podcast.
Serving as the foundation
of PSB Speakers' loudspeaker
designs, which Barton has
evolved over his career, has
been the latest developments
from the world-famous
National Research
Council (NRC) of Canada.
Located near the capital city
of Ottawa, the NRC's luminaries
are a who's who of the
16 | CE Pro August 2022
audio world that in addition
to Barton includes names
such as Dr. Floyd Toole and
Dr. Sean Olive.
Some of Barton's current
designs include the latest
generation of Alpha Series
products, which have met
the budget and performance
aspirations of home AV fans
since the 1990s, as well as
PSB Speakers' new flagship
Synchrony T600 floorstanding
speaker and B600
bookshelf speaker.
Barton recalls his formative
years as a music fan and
a young musician, and how
those days helped to forge
the path he has followed
ever since.
" Well, my background is
of course in music. I am a
violinist and studied it for
many years [when I was
young]. In conjunction with
that you start to appreciate
music and the way things
sound. Of course, at a young
age I was able to listen to a
lot of music on a single tube
During a recent CE Pro Podcast, Paul Barton discussed the
major influence Canada's National Research Council and
other audio luminaries have had on his decorated career.
Seabreeze console back in
the mid- to late-'60s, and
eventually graduated to
some stereo equipment, "
says Barton.
" Sound reproduction was
very interesting, and I'm kind
of a 'take-it-apart, put-itback-together'
guy to see
how it works. In conjunction
with my interest and
my background in music, I
was able to merge those
two things and ultimately
came out to being a speaker
designer. "
Later in the discussion,
Barton notes the transition
he made as a speaker
designer from the days when
he was just " winging it " to
his introduction to Toole,
which had a major impact
on the way he viewed audio
components.
Back in those days, Barton
continues, he remembers
the original research paper
on the Helmholtz Resonator
was just being written,
and that A. Neville Thiele
and Richard H. Small of
Thiele Small parameter fame
were still in college. Those
years were very important,
because the audio industry
was at the cusp of some
technological leaps forward,
Barton says. In turn, being
able to tap into the resources
offered by the NRC was
immeasurable, as he had
access to audio pioneers
on a regular basis who were
discussing the latest ideas
and innovations.
Boiling down some of the
research the NRC was working
on in that early period,
Barton notes that topics
- ahead of the curve at the
time - addressed areas such
as how humans hear and the
effects of room's acoustics
and the playback of audio in
small-room environments.
All of that research, he says,
shaped the way he designed
loudspeakers, and the NRC's
ongoing research today continues
to influence how he
develops products.
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CE Pro August 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of CE Pro August 2022

CE Pro August 2022 - Intro
CE Pro August 2022 - Bellyband 1
CE Pro August 2022 - Bellyband 2
CE Pro August 2022 - Cover1
CE Pro August 2022 - Cover2
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