Technical Articles

IEC 60268: Sound System Equipment - Audio Signal Processing, Amplification, and Loudspeaker Systems

IEC 60268: Sound System Equipment - Audio Signal Processing, Amplification, and Loudspeaker Systems



IEC 60268 is an international standard that pertains to sound system equipment, covering aspects of audio signal processing, amplification, and loudspeaker systems. The standard outlines requirements and guidelines for the design, performance, and safety of components used in sound reinforcement, recording studios, public address systems, and entertainment venues. Compliance with IEC 60268 ensures that sound system equipment meets established quality standards and operates effectively in various audio applications. This article details the key aspects of IEC 60268 and its significance in the realm of audio signal processing and amplification systems.


Audio Signal Processing

IEC 60268 addresses audio signal processing requirements for sound system equipment to ensure the accuracy, fidelity, and quality of audio reproduction. The standard covers aspects such as:


1. Signal Routing: The standard defines principles for signal routing, switching, and distribution within audio systems to maintain signal integrity, minimize noise, and enable flexible routing options.


2. Equalization: IEC 60268 specifies guidelines for frequency response shaping and equalization techniques to adjust tonal balance, correct room acoustics, and optimize sound reproduction characteristics.


3. Dynamics Processing: The standard addresses dynamics processing features such as compressors, limiters, expanders, and noise gates for controlling signal dynamics, volume levels, and noise reduction in audio systems.


4. Audio Effects: IEC 60268 outlines requirements for implementing audio effects processing, including reverb, delay, modulation, and other effects to enhance sound quality, spatial impression, and artistic expression.


Amplification Systems

IEC 60268 defines standards for audio amplification systems used in sound reinforcement, public address, and recording applications. Key aspects covered in the standard include:


1. Amplifier Design: The standard specifies requirements for amplifier design, output power, distortion levels, frequency response, and efficiency to ensure reliable and high-quality audio amplification.


2. Amplifier Performance: IEC 60268 addresses criteria for gain adjustments, signal-to-noise ratio, total harmonic distortion (THD), output impedance, and protection features to maintain signal purity and amplifier operational safety.


3. Output Configurations: The standard outlines guidelines for amplifier output configurations, impedance matching, line matching, bridged configurations, and mono/stereo operation based on specific application requirements.


4. Bi-amping and Tri-amping: IEC 60268 includes provisions for bi-amping and tri-amping configurations, where amplifiers drive separate frequency bands to optimize loudspeaker performance, improve system efficiency, and enhance audio fidelity.


Loudspeaker Systems

IEC 60268 establishes requirements for loudspeaker systems used in audio playback, sound reinforcement, and public address applications. Key aspects related to loudspeaker systems include:


1. Loudspeaker Design: The standard defines guidelines for loudspeaker design parameters, including driver construction, cabinet construction, driver alignment, dispersion characteristics, and acoustical performance.


2. Frequency Response: IEC 60268 outlines requirements for loudspeaker frequency response, sensitivity, directivity, distortion levels, power handling, and scalability to ensure accurate audio reproduction and optimal system integration.


3. System Integration: The standard addresses loudspeaker system integration considerations, including impedance matching, crossover design, driver alignment, enclosure tuning, system calibration, and alignment with amplification systems.


4. Acoustic Performance: IEC 60268 covers factors that influence loudspeaker performance, such as dispersion characteristics, frequency response uniformity, transient response, maximum SPL (sound pressure level), and power handling capacity to achieve high-quality audio playback.


Compliance and Certification

Manufacturers of sound system equipment must comply with the requirements specified in IEC 60268 to ensure product quality, performance, and safety. Compliance involves testing, validation, and certification of audio signal processing, amplification, and loudspeaker systems to verify adherence to the standard's guidelines. Certification ensures that sound system equipment meets recognized industry standards for audio performance and reliability.


Benefits of Compliance with IEC 60268

Adhering to the requirements outlined in IEC 60268 offers several benefits for manufacturers, designers, and users of sound system equipment:


1. Audio Quality: Compliance with IEC 60268 standards ensures high audio quality, fidelity, and accuracy in sound reproduction, delivering superior listening experiences for various applications.


2. System Compatibility: Sound system equipment that meets IEC 60268 requirements provides compatibility, interoperability, and consistency in signal processing, amplification, and loudspeaker systems integration.


3. Safety and Reliability: Certified equipment complies with safety standards, reliability requirements, and performance criteria, ensuring safe operation, long-term durability, and consistent performance in audio applications.


4. Industry Recognition: Certification to IEC 60268 standards demonstrates a commitment to quality, compliance with industry best practices, and alignment with recognized performance benchmarks in sound system equipment.



IEC 60268 is a comprehensive standard that governs sound system equipment, encompassing audio signal processing, amplification, and loudspeaker systems. Compliance with the requirements specified in IEC 60268 ensures that sound system equipment meets established quality standards, operates effectively, and delivers high-quality audio reproduction in diverse applications. Manufacturers, designers, and users of sound system equipment benefit from adherence to IEC 60268 by ensuring audio quality, system compatibility, safety, and reliability in sound reinforcement, recording, and entertainment venues.



Contact: Eason Wang

Phone: +86-13751010017


Add: 1F Junfeng Building, Gongle, Xixiang, Baoan District, Shenzhen, Guangdong, China

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