Harmonizing Sound and Simulation: Revolutionary Loudspeaker Design with COMSOL Multiphysics

Polar diagram of Bay Radial Speaker (BRS), a unique “radial tweeter” design

As part of an innovative collaboration between BAYZ Audio and SciEngineer, the worlds of sound and simulation have harmonized to create a revolutionary loudspeaker. BAYZ Audio has reached a spectacular achievement in crafting an unparalleled loudspeaker using COMSOL Multiphysics, shortening the design and production timeline by one-third and reducing costs by 70%.

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In the past 30 years, Zoltan Bay, the founder of BAYZ Audio, has developed a number of state-of-the-art audio devices. His latest invention is the Counterpoint Flagship Loudspeaker, which he has perfected with the help of Arpad Forberger, senior application engineer at SciEngineer. 

SciEngineer provides R&D organizations with services, such as personalized training and consulting, encompassing software solutions from industry leaders such as MathWorks, Speedgoat, and COMSOL. By seamlessly integrating technologically advanced solutions into research and development processes, and leveraging the expertise of skilled application engineers, SciEngineer helps its partners to achieve mastery within their industries.

By using COMSOL Multiphysics’ acoustic capabilities for composite sound design, Zoltan and Arpad were able to deliver the latest radial tweeter that has redefined their use in the audio industry and set new standards for loudspeaker performance.

“When compared to other state-of-the-art speakers, the Counterpoint has a faster impulse response, much cleaner decay, and very low ringing. My intention was to design a speaker with the lowest distortion signature with an idealized pulse with perfect frequency response in all directions.”
– Zoltan Bay, Founder of BAYZ Audio.

What is COMSOL Multiphysics?

COMSOL Multiphysics is a multi-purpose simulation software that engineers, scientists, and designers use to design and simulate single- as well as coupled physics in their designs. 

This means that through a virtual prototype, they are able to predict the behavior of their design similarly to real-world conditions. Engineers may opt to use the software prior to physical testing, to achieve accurate virtual designs, allowing them to work fewer hours, cut costs on physical prototypes, and shorten time to market.

How did the collaboration come to fruition and mutual vision?

Due to the intricate nature of the speaker design, it took Zoltan over six years to develop this technology’s precedent, the 360 Bay Radial Speaker. When deciding to create an improved version, the 180 Bay Radial Speaker, he didn’t want to repeat that lengthy process. He was determined to shorten the development time and reduce the number of prototypes required.

In his search for a solution, Zoltan discovered COMSOL Multiphysics, a highly regarded tool used by top manufacturers in the acoustic industry. When he learned about the software’s exceptional acoustic capabilities, he decided it could be the perfect tool to help him realize his vision of creating the first loudspeaker with a 180-degree radiation pattern, and that’s when he reached out to SciEngineer consulting team,

Why COMSOL Multiphysics?

With the add-on Acoustics Module, COMSOL Multiphysics can model and predict sound features and functionality in components such as: 

  • Electroacoustic devices, such as microphones, speakers, and sensors
  • Microacoustics devices: microphones, mobile devices, hearing aids, and Micro Electro Mechanical Systems.
  • Geometrical Acoustics: For calculating the trajectories of sound waves, phase, intensity, impulse response, energy and level decay curves, and room acoustic metrics as well as the acoustic diffusion of large buildings like concert halls.

In the case of the Counterpoint Flagship Loudspeaker, the simultaneous occurrence of multi-acoustic physics called for a multidisciplinary software that fully hosts the application of the Finite Element Method (FEM), and could model, couple, and solve the speaker’s acoustic and structural properties magnetic field calculations, and coil design. 

How can a musician and audio device designer leverage COMSOL Multiphysics?

COMSOL Multiphysics expert and application engineer at SciEngineer, Arpad Forberger, created the design model in a user-friendly simulation app using the app builder feature, which Zoltan Bay could then customize. 

By using COMSOL Multiphysics and several of its add-on modules, including the AC/DC-, Structural Mechanics-, and Acoustics Modules, Zoltan and Arpad were able to design electric and magnetic fields, solid and flexible domains, and shell material and calculate the speaker’s radiation pattern.

Result

The result is a revolutionary and one-of-a-kind loudspeaker in the field.

More precisely :

  • The speaker does not include spiders or gaskets that hold the magnets that traditional tweeters contain. 
  • Instead, it consists of parts such as the Printed Circuit Board (PCB), which isn’t typically produced in loudspeakers, making the concept licensable by OEMs. 
  • The speaker is easy to scale from 50 mm to 500 mm, meaning that it can be installed in cars and in professional audio systems.
  • The manufacturing process is faster, easier, and more cost-effective.

To learn more about the results in performance, read our user story Accelerating BAYZ Radial Speaker-BRS design using COMSOL Multiphysics, detailed by Arpad Forberger.

Arpad Forberger’s presentation at the 2023 ALTI Conference

In this video Arpad Forberger delivers a presentation at the 2023 ALTI Conference in Munich, Germany, outlining the capabilities of COMSOL Multiphysics for the acoustics industry and unveiling the newest version of the Bay Radial Speaker (BRS).

Mark Beach’s presentation at the 2023 ALTI Conference

In this video Mark Beach talks about the licensing and unparalleled performance of the new OEM 180° Bay Radial Speaker (BRS) which borrows technology from the 360° BRS (fully omni and flat to 50 kHz).

Conclusion

By using COMSOL Multiphysics’ acoustic capabilities for composite sound design, Zoltan Bay created a ground-breaking speaker that sets the stage for future generations of audio speakers and makes a compelling case for integrating simulation into the acoustics industry.

Featured products

All products mentioned are developed by COMSOL.

Learn more

If you want to take your education to the next level and learn more about the Finite Element Method, check out this COMSOL Multiphysics Capabilities for Aerospace and Defense article which outlines the application of FEM and its advantages.

If you would like to learn more about COMSOL Multiphysics and its acoustic capabilities in the automotive sector, read our user story HARMAN Innovates Car Audio Systems Design Process with COMSOL Multiphysics, about how HARMAN used COMSOL Multiphysics to simulate microphone samples for car audio systems.

But if you don’t have time to learn all the in’s and out’s of COMSOL Multiphysics, you can still stay in the loop on technology trends that are transforming the world we live in. Reach out to our Consulting team to gain an understanding of the advantages FEM can bring to your specific project.

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