A number of architectures for a hollow Langevin ultrasonic transducer are proposed and evaluated. One of these is optimised by finite element modelling and is then manufactured and analysed experimentally. The preload on the transducer ceramics is increased and the effect on the performance is measured. At maximum preload the results of an experimental modal analysis are used to determine the natural frequency and response of both the operating longitudinal mode and unwanted bending modes. The performance of the hollow transducer is compared to a solid commercial transducer containing the same volume of piezoceramic material. The efficiency is shown to be comparable. Higher ultrasonic displacement amplitudes are achieved with the hollow transducer although a lower Q-factor is found.