I have two pairs of speakers that could do with opening them up to investigate problems--one decades-old set of Celestion hi-fi speakers that has developed a rattle, the other a set of M-Audio Studidophile SP-5B powered monitors that needs a replacement LED power indicator.

My question: I've heard that the mere act of opening a speaker cabinet can change the sound of a speaker. Is this true? If so, how does one open speakers to service them while countering this problem?

Or is this something I don't need to worry about?

1 Answer 1



Boxes need to be resealed properly. Air leaks will change the performance of the cabinet. As long as you are careful about making sure the box's sealing materials goes back in place (or are replaced with new sealant/gaskets), you've got nothing to worry about.

  • Good to know; where can I get more detail about speaker construction? Jul 3, 2011 at 19:45
  • Neil, how deep down the rabbit hole do you want to go, speaker design wise?
    – phasetransitions
    Jul 12, 2011 at 18:26
  • Not far enough to design my own cabinets, but enough to know if this is likely to affect the flat response of my studio monitors, and if so, how? Jul 12, 2011 at 20:18
  • Neil, that's kind of a tough task. Almost all of the introductory books on building speakers focus on the methods, not the whys. Understanding how a sealed box behaves is a rather complex mathematical derivation. If you can accept the handwaving that the pressure inside a sealed box is constant with decreasing frequency, then you can see that the box response will remain the baseline as long as the pressure condition holds.
    – phasetransitions
    Jul 14, 2011 at 11:19
  • Is there an optimal place or time of year to open speaker cabinets? Also, it sounds to me like, if I were to open one speaker, I should open the other one as well (of the stereo pair, similar logic would seem to apply to sets of 5.1 or 7.1 speakers as well). Oct 31, 2011 at 17:36

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