Apple iBall


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The iBall is the internal speaker out of an Apple iMac DV

This driver was designed for Apple by Harmon Kardon. JBL
(an HK siste company) has patents on it. This is a 25 mm concave aluminum cone used FR in the iMac. When a Harmon Kardon iSub is added to the iMac they are crossed over between 200 & 300 Hz resulting in better sound and more attainable amplitude.

The enclosure is 6 cm in diameter, the two halves siliconed together with a bolt securing one side to the other.

Initial listening (with the blueberry ones), in an environment that precludes careful listening, the iBalls driven with a small HK receiver, and a Denon CD player produced quite satisfactory sound. Enuff to warrant further experimentation.

My grape pair are going thru a number of mods in an attempt to extract the most out of them.

  • grind off the flange on the front
  • remove the shielding cup -- this sticks out in a cup-like fashion behind the entire driver creating an ideal environment for some resonances. A steel washer will be glued on the back to complete the magnetic circuit
  • damp the enclosure
  • damp & brace the speaker driver

Steve Sedmack has supplied some waterfall plots of the set that he got. Not to be unexpected of a product that must be produced with razor thin margins, the iBall isn't without its problems.

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