underpowering/overpowering

Discussion in 'Speakers' started by Matty Seals, Jan 22, 2005.

  1. Matty Seals

    Matty Seals Auditioning

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    i'd like to make sure that whatever speakers i choose are properly powered. how dangerous is it giving speakers more than their RMS? i would like to give the L/C/R channels 250 - 300 watts because most of my speaker choices are in that range and give the suuround sides and rears 125 - 150 watts. my ideal setup would be a 3 channel and a 4 channel, but most companies only make 2 channels or 5 channels.

    is it worse to underpower the center channel or over power the rear channels?
     
  2. Kin Poon

    Kin Poon Stunt Coordinator

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    people seem to think that a 300 watt amp can kill a speaker that says 100watt max RMS. This only happens when you push the speaker to a level where your ears are basiclaly deaf after a thorough listening section.

    One thing i learned is that the more power an amp can put out, the more control it has on the driver. For instance...damping and consistent power from a wide frequecny range (20hz-20khz) with minimal distortion.
     
  3. Kevin. W

    Kevin. W Screenwriter

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    Better to have more than not enough. You'll clip the tweeter to death before you burn out the coil.

    Kevin
     
  4. Leo Kerr

    Leo Kerr Screenwriter

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    Or, think of it this way:

    0.07%THD at 300W into 8ohm load, all channels driven.

    Well, what if you run it at 75W? If that 0.07% bothered you, well, it's probably a lot less.

    Leo
     
  5. Kenneth Harden

    Kenneth Harden Screenwriter

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    From all my experience (limited, but growing [​IMG] ) - you will fry speakers in a FEW SECONDS with a over driven amp, but most good speakers (I saw your short list on your other thread) could probably get the snot beaten out of them with a powerful amp and never be harmed.

    In otherwords, you can INSTANTLY ruin tweeters and such with a over driven weak amp, where sending a LOT of 'clean' power to speakers will usually not harm them, and you will have other clues (compression, wierd noises, etc.) when you are going too far.

    I see stuff from time to time where some tweeters can take a very fast 1000 watt peak and be fine - however, a lot quality 10 watts can cook the same tweeter in literally 1, 2, 3 seconds of use.
     
  6. Matty Seals

    Matty Seals Auditioning

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    thanks for the replys...

    i'm leaning towards the b&w's. i know there's better out there, but for the purpose of this room i think they'll be fine. anyways, the specs on the bw site say to give:

    nautilus 803 - 250w
    nautilus htm1 - 250w
    nautilus scm1 - 120w

    any reccomendations on amp(s)...
     
  7. Kin Poon

    Kin Poon Stunt Coordinator

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    price range?
     
  8. Matty Seals

    Matty Seals Auditioning

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    let's say 10k - 15k range for pre/pro, amp(s), and dvd player, but i will spend more (or less)...

    here's the rest of the equipment i'm leaning towards:

    65" panasonic hd plasma
    37" panasonic hd plasma x2

    nautilus 803 fronts
    nautilus htm1 center
    nautilus scm1 side and rear surround

    pre/pro - ???
    amp(s) - ???
    dvd - ???

    i'd like components to match if possible. ideal amps would be 3 x 250 and 4 x 125 or two 2 x 125 amps.
     
  9. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    There is practically no such thing as overpowering. If you have more than enough power, you won't be turning it up as far to get the levels you want while it still sounds clear, so damaging the drivers is unlikely.
     
  10. dany

    dany Supporting Actor

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    Better the speaker,less watts you'll need.
     
  11. Elinor

    Elinor Supporting Actor

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    >"Better the speaker,less watts you'll need"

    Man, I wish I had known. I wouldn't have wasted my money on those inefficient Dynaudios ....
     
  12. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Huh?
     
  13. John S

    John S Producer

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    Hmm, I think he meant the more efficient the speaker, the less watts you will need.

    Speaker efficiency is certainly not a good indicator of how good any given speaker will be for sure.
     
  14. Kenneth Harden

    Kenneth Harden Screenwriter

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    I'm a KLIPSCH and a HORN fan, and I admit that isn't true [​IMG]
     
  15. dany

    dany Supporting Actor

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    Thats what i was looking for,more efficient and of course its not the only indacater but its a pretty good one. Not to many crappy speakers rated at 93.
     
  16. John S

    John S Producer

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    Ahh but also many many truly awesome speakers with far less efficiency is all.
     
  17. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    Sensitivity tells you how loud it will go with a given input, but tells you little about how a speaker sounds. Klipsch are efficient, but I am not fond of the way they sound.
     
  18. John-Tompkins

    John-Tompkins Second Unit

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    Wrooooong again, taint got nothing to do with it whatsoever.

    PS..Actually ever time I went to audition speakers (by coincidence maybe) It was always the most ineffecient speakers that I was attracted to. My current Aerial setup is about as ineffecient as you can get ( 84db and 4 ohms ) ..and I wouldnt trade em for a warehosue full of Klipsch ..just my opinion of course [​IMG]

    I'll be recieving my Cinenova Earthquake amps tommorow to drive these bad boys ..300 watts @ 8 ohms of pure power ..and each 3 channel amp has a whoopin horse of a transformer,, 3.5kva torodial transformers for each amp [​IMG]
     
  19. John Garcia

    John Garcia Executive Producer

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    The way I look at it, a less efficient speaker can be paired up with a powerhouse amp and give excellent results, as long as your budget will hold out [​IMG] In other words, less efficient isn't necessarilly a bad thing, it's more about choosing the right gear for the job.
     
  20. Will.MA

    Will.MA Stunt Coordinator

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    IMHO, If you have this amount of money to spend, you should consult with your local audio professional so that he or she can ask you questions about your tastes, installation area, intended use, etc. and AUDITION equipment with you that fits your budget and your operating constraints.

    Simply put, there are too many factors (and way too many hardware possibilities) that must be considered when making an investment of that magnitude. You need professional advice and a consultation so that your eyes/ears and wallet can agree to agree.
     

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