We've Been Around Awhile
Robert Tupper with a loudspeaker design in the Houston Chronicle
Robert Tupper in an Audio Store in downtown
The Audio Expander invented in 1967 in
In the '60s, Robert Tupper began a lifelong love and career of loudspeaker design and manufacturing. As many have, his interest began in his garage in Houston, Texas.
Tuning his critical listening to the subtle nuances of sound, he would attend live Houston Symphony concerts, attempting to pick out each instrument's tone and output. He would return home, design and build a loudspeaker, and listen and fine-tune his speaker designs. He used the latest design parameters even before many of the large manufacturers of the time. All calculations were done on paper, tested, and repeated until design goals were reached. This process could take hundreds of hours.
What made him stand out?
He developed a line up of loudspeakers which were sold to prominent high end audio stores in the 60's. Frustration ensued with the stores as he would make constant changes to his designs. Anyone buying his product would want the latest models, affecting a stores inventory. The decision was made, leading him to the conception of Custom Designs Ltd. Every loudspeaker system was tailored to the needs of the customer; a true custom design. He continued his designs till 2014.
Over the decades, we continued to create new technologies for many applications including large theaters, clubs, churches, and homes. Each "job" came with its own unique design challenges. Systems included custom horn-loaded designs, folded horns, tapered arrays, custom planar magnetic systems, as well as more conventional designs, and hidden systems. We have always been particularly fond of tapered arrays.
University of Texas, Austin sound chamber.
Testing a 36" planar design using Neo 42's and Kapton