For more than 40 years, Neville Thiele's and Richard Small's Thiele-Small (TS) parameters have been the de facto criteria for assessing the performance of loudspeakers. Their unified approach analyzes the electromechanical behavior of a speaker's components and the interaction with each other and with the air inside and outside the speaker cabinet. The resulting equation is mathematically identical to that describing a circuit. Then, sound produced by the speaker can be calculated by a simple circuit analysis. By using the TS parameters in computer models, users could design the loudspeaker/cabinet interface without having to manually build a speaker cabinet.
Richard Small's experience in electronic circuit design for high performance analytical instruments at the Bell & Howell Research Center in Calif. laid the foundation for his loudspeaker analysis and measurement work at The University of Sydney. Later, he was head of Research at KEF Electronics Ltd. in Maidstone, England. A Senior Member of the IEEE, Dr. Small is a member of the Institution of Engineers Australia. He is a Fellow of the Audio Engineering Society and has received the Society's Publication Award, Silver Medal and Gold Medal. He is a senior principal engineer for Harman/Becker Automotive Systems in Martinsville, Ind.