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Has anyone used a speaker level to line level converter?

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10 replies to this topic

#1 of 11 OFFLINE   EdNichols


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Posted April 23 2003 - 08:18 AM

I have an Onkyo receiver with no pre-outs and I would like to eventually upgrade to separates but can't swing the pre/pro thing right now. I want to get the amp first and wondered if anyone has used a converter. If so, what kind of results did you have and if you eventually went to a full pre/pro later on could you tell a big difference between it and using the converter?

#2 of 11 OFFLINE   Craig_Kg


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Posted April 23 2003 - 02:33 PM

Yep - made them myself.
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#3 of 11 OFFLINE   EdNichols


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Posted April 24 2003 - 12:52 AM

What kind of results did you get?

#4 of 11 OFFLINE   Jassen M. West

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Posted April 24 2003 - 12:56 AM

could you post how you made them? materials maybe a step by step? thanks

#5 of 11 OFFLINE   Andrew Pratt

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Posted April 24 2003 - 02:37 AM

I still wonder about the benefits of doing this since any distortion that the onboard amps will still be there in the line level signal which you'll then amplify with the power amp again so I'm not sure it would be worth the effort. As they say garbage in garbage out.

#6 of 11 OFFLINE   Cees Alons

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Posted April 24 2003 - 09:10 AM

You don't need a real converter. A 'speaker-out' signal can be used as a line-in, because the input stage of the final amplifier isn't a serious load to the receivers amps. But you need to know if the receiver amps can have it that you don't have speakers connected. Make sure you don't set those receiver amps too loud (that will also help diminishing the distortion!), and in case of doubt, buy some 20W (or more) 20Ohms (not lower, but not higher than 50 Ohms) resistors and put them across the speaker-outs of the receiver-amps (parallel to the connection to the line-in of the end-amps). If the resistors get too hot, set the receiver output lower and the end-amps higher. If that isn't possible anymore, you need bigger resistors (more wattage). Cees

#7 of 11 OFFLINE   Danny Tse

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Posted April 24 2003 - 09:49 AM

Posted Image

This is what you need. Carver used to make one called, if memories serve me right, the Z-Coupler, and it came in 2 channel or 5 channel versions. As for the performance of such converter, I have no first hand experience. However, I have read that it's OK. Of course, your mileage may vary.
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#8 of 11 OFFLINE   EdNichols


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Posted April 25 2003 - 09:01 AM

Thanks for the pic. and info. Based on it's looks and since it has spring connectors I would have to say it probably would not come close to matching the sound of a true pre/pro. But it could be better than nuttin.

#9 of 11 OFFLINE   Tekara


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Posted April 25 2003 - 10:53 AM

if your aiming to build the item in the picture previously posted, I wouldn't think one to be difficult to make, since both signals are analog a straight connection with no conversion circuitry is possible. wire the black to the outside ring (ground) and the red to the inside (+). this should do it. I've used the oposite conversion a few times myself (yes it worked, no it's not that greatby any stretch) by taking off the RCA ends and using the two wires to connect to a speaker. radio shack sells all the parts you would need, then just pick up a soldering iron and some solder and away you go.
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#10 of 11 OFFLINE   Steve Berger

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Posted April 25 2003 - 03:52 PM

Speaker to line level converters for car stereos are fairly cheap. I got mine from MCM electronics for about $4. I use them to feed my surround speaker outputs to a second Dolby surround amp for a poor man's 6.1 system. It seems to work fairly well. They also have some nice isolation transformers to help remove ground loop hum.

#11 of 11 OFFLINE   Craig_Kg


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Posted April 25 2003 - 09:11 PM

It worked a treat (I've now upgraded my receiver). I used a 10k Ohm resistor in series with a 470 Ohm resistor for a 20:1 attenuation. The speaker out is bridged by the series resistance (10k Ohm to +ve) and the RCA out is taken across the 470 Ohm resistor (ground to -ve). The 'point' is to allow a high quality 2ch system to coexist with a cheap HT receiver.
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