The third edition of Sound Systems: Design and Optimization is here!

Sound Systems: Design and Optimization provides an accessible and unique perspective on the behavior of sound systems in the practical world. The third edition reflects current trends in the audio field thereby providing readers with the newest methodologies and techniques. In this greatly expanded new edition, you’ll find clearer explanations, a more streamlined organization, increased […]

Interview On Sound Design Live

Last week Nathan Lively published a great interview with me on his podcast, Sound Design Live. Enjoy! In this episode of Sound Design Live I speak with Bob McCarthy, author of Sound System Design & Optimization and Director of System Optimization at Meyer Sound. We talk about variable acoustic architecture, why we must optimize before […]

If you have ever tuned a sound system – watch this video – 3 min.

This is a highly informative  – and realistic – short video on the how a system optimization engineer and FOH engineer relate in their job roles. We have Bennet Prescott to thank for this. I only wish I had done it myself.

Off to Mexico for AES and SIM3 Training – Updated

I have been busy putting together new material for SIM 3 training, and AES seminar and the upcoming Broadway Sound Master Class. You have seen some of the work in progress below, but I have had to push to get things ready for showtime.  Sorry for the delay in getting more things posted and for […]

Phase alignment of spectral crossovers

This is a continuation of the impulse response subwoofer thread. Here are some screens from Sounds Systems: Optimaztion and Design that deal with phase alignment of crossovers. The figure above shows the phase responses brought together between sub and main.  The crossover is not steep and therefore the phase response overlap over a wide range. […]

SIM3 Training for Disney Animation Studios

This week I spent two days at the Disney Animation Studios in Burbank California. This is the place where major animation films are created. Unless you have been living under the Rock of Gibraltar you know what these films are.  Mermaids, Beauties, Beasts, Princesses and more come to life in this space in the form […]

Phase Alignment of Subs – Why I don’t use the impulse response

OK. The saga continues down below………………………. What is the best way to phase align our subwoofers to the mains? There is a hint in the way the question was phrased. I didn’t say time align (and it is not because I am afraid of copyright police). I say phase align because that is precisely what […]

Cardioid Subwoofers

A hot topic of discussion is cardioid subwoofers, so this will be the place to get that topic going. At the moment I will use this as a test to see if I can upload a few graphics from the book here.  The first will be some pics that describe the behaviour of end-fire arrays. […]


LDI  2009 On November 20th and 21st I went to LDI and conducted seminars on (guess what) sound system design and optimization. These were part of a Cirque du Soleil sponsored education program and each session was 2 hours. I find it difficult to cram that subject into a 32 hour seminar so compressing it down to 2 is just […]

The official blog for Bob McCarthy

Since the publication of my book, a number of people have requested me to create a place where we can carry on a discussion specifically related to the topics in that text and where they can directly address issues and questions to me. In addition to those specific topics in the book, my intention here […]