The news broke publicly of the death of Australian audio industry icon (Dr Albert) Neville Thiele OAM yesterday. He passed way on 1 October 2012, aged 91.

Neville ThieleNeville lived life to the fullest,’ says Frank Hinton, friend and President of the Australian Commercial Entertainment Technology Association (ACETA)

‘He never stopped working and gave generously of his time, particularly in the dissemination of knowledge. He authored numerous technical papers, often published by the Audio Engineering Society. He was a nurturing teacher and until recently lectured on loudspeaker design at Sydney University, he loved his students and they adored him.’

‘In 2001 Neville Thiele was my lecturer for the loudspeaker design subject in the Audio and Acoustics Masters program at Sydney Uni, says Auditoria Directort, Scott Willsallen. ‘Every day of that 13-week subject was fascinating and there was as much to learn from the course content as Neville's stories, which found their way into every topic.’

Within the audio industry, Thiele is best known for defining the Thiele-Small set of loudspeaker parameters (defining the specified low-frequency performance of a loudspeaker driver), developed and published with colleague Richard Small. To this day, these parameters are used worldwide by virtually all loudspeaker producers and are an essential part of the industry vernacular.

‘Neville was a hero to some and an inspiration to many,’ Hinton says. ‘He spent his life in research and development, and very few could match his accomplishments in creating and improving audio/visual entertainment and industrial technologies. I experienced his skill when he designed the filters for the Grover Notting critical listening systems. We found his energy and enthusiasm boundless and he was 88 years of age when this work was performed, his mind was razor sharp. He consistently encouraged and took particular pleasure in the achievements of our project, relishing news of progress, such was his positive demeanour.

‘I would regularly bump into Neville at AES conferences or around the Uni,’ Willsallen says. ‘He never stopped working, contributing and teaching in his uniquely humble and understated way. He was, and will remain, one of the worlds most influential and significant contributors to electro-acoustics.’

‘Those who knew Neville would agree his disposition was understated,’ Hinton says. ‘He was innately modest and generous. He was a husband, father, friend and mentor to many, and our thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time. It is indeed true Neville, you will be sadly missed, but be assured, never forgotten.’

The funeral is set for Friday 12 October at 10.30am, in St Albans Church, 3 Pembroke Street, Epping, NSW.

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