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Mixing 8ohm and 4ohm loads

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by matt_yots, Mar 3, 2003.

  1. matt_yots

    matt_yots Member

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    Ok...here's my dilemma:
    Current system-
    Yamaha RX-2095
    Main: ??
    Center: ??
    Rears: NHT SB-3 (8 ohm speakers)

    I'm currently planning to upgrade my front and center channel with 4 ohm speakers w/ around 89-90 db sensitivity. I listen at low to moderately high volume levels (currently, 10-11 o'clock on the receiver dial on extremely rare occasions). I was wondering if mixing the 4 and 8 ohm speakers would be a problem. I know that most forums cite that the difference is negligible with a proper power supply. The Yamaha is rated at 5x100 watts AND includes a switch for 4 and 8 ohm settings. Which setting should I use, and will mixing the speakers at the lower/higher setting pose a problem?
     
  2. Mat_M

    Mat_M Well-Known Member

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    Is the switch available for each channel? or is it only for fronts and surrounds? or is it a switch for either ALL channels 8 Ohm or ALL channels 4 Ohm? I'm not familiar with the RX-2095. If there are switches for each individual channel, then I say you'd be fine mixing loads.
     
  3. Adam.Gonsman

    Adam.Gonsman Well-Known Member

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    You can safely run lower loads (higher ohms) on an amp rated for higher loads (lower ohms). So, more specifically, if you set your switch to 4ohms so you can safely run your front and centers, you can still safely run 8ohm surrounds also. You may have to adjust the volume levels of the surrounds a bit as the ohm switch messes with power limiting on the amps to keep the heavier loads from getting too out of control. But you aren't in danger of destroying anything from doing this.
     
  4. Gianni

    Gianni Active Member

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    Yes, you can mix them. As a matter of fact the THX Select specifications allow the use of 4 ohm fronts and 8 ohm surrounds.

    How your particular amp will handle the 4 ohm load is another matter. I would search for reviews on your Yamaha as I do remember this receiver being used with some 4 ohm speakers. I believe you will find it at enjoythemusic.com or ecoustics.com. The article was actually a review of M&K LCR 55 or 750 THX speakers. If I recall it was passable with the M&Ks. These have a sensitivity rating 0f 85 dB.

    Also, I've read a couple of articles recommending to leave that 4/8 ohm switch in the 8 ohm position. I think you will find one of these at Audioholics.com.

    Good Luck
     

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