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Etymology of the name:
According to Indian philosophies Karma is a natural law that works in an exact law, just like mathematical and chemical ones. It acts in good and bad, in reward and punishment for morality or immorality. It works like a great natural force for all the issues of man’s conduct.
Karma is Clinamen’s new offer of high sensitivity loudspeaker developed in order for the concept of ‘Natural Path of Sound’ to reach as many users as possible. Indeed due to its small size and the care in its design and details, the loudspeaker finds its right place in any domestic environment and enhances it.
Karma is a high sensitivity two way floor standing loudspeaker; actual 94 dB/W/m. This figure together with the impedance module with very few phase rotations makes the loudspeaker the best match for low power 0 feedback valve electronic devices.
The heart of the design is developed around the custom 8” unit; it is a monomembrane loudspeaker with ogive phase plug optimized to have specific dispersion characteristics and a controlled break-up to cross best with the high range way. The frame is made from die cast aluminum, whilst the magnetic motor is built with underhung technology (mobile coil with lower height than the magnetic gap) which allows the mobile coil to move in a more linear magnetic induction field. The magnetic circuit has a ring that prevents the inductive come back of the electric impedance module. This allows us to implement an extremely simple crossover without need for linearizing reactive electrical cells.
This is a typical example of how Clinamen follows the ‘natural path of sound’; that is preventing a damaging phenomenon rather than fixing it afterwards.
The tweeter is the Clinamen CL1 unit, a magnetoplanar dipole front loaded with wood waveguide. The tweeter’s membrane is a large Mylar sheet on which the voice-coil is deposited. This lets the membrane be integrally ‘piloted’ and with a force distributed on the whole radiant surface and most of all to generate flat wave fronts which are spatially channeled by the beech wood Clinamen waveguide (by contrast the dome and compression tweeters are piloted only in the circular crown located by the intersection of the voice coil with the dome).
The tweeter + waveguide unit is suspended and insulated from the loudspeaker through a golden developed arm. The uncoupling is achieved with springs that create a high pass filter with low Fs that prevents the propagation of harmful vibrations towards the tweeter. The arm can rotate of +/- 20° around its vertical axis to meet the customer’s needs depending on the acoustic characteristics of the listening environment.
The loading system for low frequencies implemented in the Karmas is a tapered quarter wave tube; this kind of system is known as TQWT and it is very complex. It is made of three interacting resounding tubes and a conical horn at the same time. The implementation has taken a long time and the design has been modified in time, according to the feedbacks from measurement and listening. The results achieved combine quantity and quality of the low and mid-range, with live performances and great emotional involvement. As well as the great extension what is more impressive is the articulation and phrasing of the lower octaves; the latter freed from the redundancy typical of reflex chords allow the enjoyment of the harmonious weave of the arch instruments.
The physics of the TQWT systems provides for a particularly rough line response, due to the higher harmonics of the tuning frequency Fb of the system. A common way to linearize the response is to use a huge amount of acoustic absorbers in the line. Clinamen is against this approach because it involves loss of dynamics and efficiency.
Therefore the optimization of the response in low frequency in the Karmas has been achieved through a three-fold method. By limiting the intervention of the acoustic absorber to the essential, choosing it of the most suitable kind (three materials are used: natural wool, polyester and cork) and using a couple of Helmholtz resonators suitably calibrated by Q factor and Fs in order to cut down the resonance peaks typical of the line. Some other approaches complementary to ours require the copious use of absorbers and/or electric resonance cells in the crossover network.
In other words, with the Clinamen approach that uses little and targeted acoustic absorber and Helmoltz resonators to cut the line response peaks, we can combine all the advantages that a TQWT system can give (efficiency, dynamics and extension of the low register) without having to endure its faults (rough/unstuck response of the low range).
A TQWT system implemented this way is very similar to a conical horn and this explains the resulting great dynamics at the listening towards the same reflex chord.
To realize what we said we have a diagram below showing the response in close field of the Karma’s mouth and the intervention of the two Helmholtz resonators. The green curve refers to the response with non-working resonators; the orange curve shows how the working resonators absorb the line response peaks absolutely naturally and efficiently.
The Karma’s crossover, rather than crossing the components, joins up their emissions blending them homogeneously and without sharp changes. The central frequency of this transition is around 3KHz. The filtering of the bass unit is supported by the exclusive phase plug that works as a mechanic filter, vigorously attenuating the frequencies starting from 5KHz. The very efficient tweeter is aligned to the sensitivity of the woofer with an inductive attenuator to maximize dynamics. The coils are made from a flat copper layer air winded in order to prevent any form of saturation of the core.
Karmas are sold in pair at the price of 7,500 Euros in matte wood color finishing.
The price for metalized lacquering like the model in the picture is 7,900 Euros.