Practical Impedance Measurement

Author: Steve Temme
Loudspeaker impedance measurements are made for many reasons. In the R&D lab, these range from the simple task of identifying a speaker’s resonant frequency to more complex functions such as calculating the speaker’s Thiele-Small parameters. On the production line, impedance measurement is a key quality control parameter that verifies that the speaker’s motor properties are correct, that the magnet is charged correctly, the voice coil number of turns is correct and that the moving mass (cone and voice coil) is within specification.
There are two basic methods of making impedance measurements on loudspeakers, micro-speakers and headphones using sound card and software based systems. These are basic single channel measurements, and more complex, but more accurate, dual channel methods. Both methods are implemented in SoundCheck, and with some additional hardware these tests are simple to carry out.

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