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optimal amplifier power


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16 replies to this topic

#1 of 17 OFFLINE   Phil P

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Posted November 27 2002 - 10:41 AM

Optimally, should you get an amp whose power rating is higher than the maximal recommended power handling of your speakers? If so, then how much higher? Optimally, how powerful an amp should you get for a 4 ohm speaker whose minimum recommended power is 100 watts and maximum recommended power handling is 300 watts?

#2 of 17 OFFLINE   Kevin. W

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Posted November 27 2002 - 11:57 AM

Usually your better of getting an amp with more power than the speakers need. This way you have some head room for intense scenes. Then again the more sensitive the speakers the less power need to reach reference levels. As far as ohms go just make sure the amp is rated to 4ohms. I believe a sign of a good amp powering 4ohms is the ability of the amp to double output(eg: 100w/8ohm..200w/4ohm) without increasing distortion.

Kevin

#3 of 17 OFFLINE   Phil P

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Posted November 28 2002 - 02:02 AM

Should you have less powerful amplifiers for your surrounds as the surround speaker max handlings are generally less, or match the same amplifier power rating across the board?

#4 of 17 OFFLINE   Dave Milne

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Posted November 28 2002 - 02:43 AM

Phil,
The usual rule of thumb is to have equal power all around. In my experience, however, you can get away with a little less power on the surrounds, as long as they're not too much lower in efficiency than tne mains. The center channel, however, gets a lot of info and needs substantial power. My system is

400 W/chan L-R
550 W center
250 W/chan sides
250 W/chan rears
550 W LFE sub
600 W front sub

I have only once heard the amps clip on the surrounds (Star Wars Episode II at 3dB below reference)

And I have mixed brands of power amps, which is also generally regarded as a no-no. However, these are all pretty high-end amps and the sonic differences are very minute...

#5 of 17 OFFLINE   EarleD

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Posted November 28 2002 - 03:26 AM

Dave,

What brand of speakers are you using. With that kinda power my Klipsch might explodePosted ImagePosted Image

Are you using pro amps?

Earle

#6 of 17 OFFLINE   Dave Milne

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Posted November 30 2002 - 12:13 AM

Earle,
Amps are Bryston, Sumo, and one bridged Adcom. Speakers are all Dynaudio. The mains are large WMTMW towers that will handle gobs of power --my next upgrade will be to swap out the 4BST on the mains to a pair of 7BSSTs (800 watt monoblocks). By the way, when the theater was being built, I ran a separate 30A, 10ga circuit for the ampsPosted Image

#7 of 17 OFFLINE   ChrisWiggles

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Posted November 30 2002 - 12:38 PM

Hey dave... you think you might give me some of those used dynaudios? Perhaps some of those amps too to go with them? Posted Image You can be sure they will get a good home Posted Image Good god, you must have your own separate section of the power grid....

#8 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 01 2002 - 09:59 AM

You need to consider Slew Rates, Rise Timess , Damping etc, etc when using different brand amps
In your case if you have 100 wpc @ 8 and the ability to play 2 ohm sppeakkers you will be fine Adcoms 7700 will drive anything on the pplanet, exceeeptthiss keyboard. . .( web--tv what can I say)
Even Monkeys fall from trees.

#9 of 17 OFFLINE   Yogi

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Posted December 02 2002 - 01:39 AM

Get as much power as you can afford. You will anyway be able to use only what your ears and your lease can handlePosted Image. This will just ensure that all the power that you are using is linear and undistorted. Dont worry about speaker ratings as they can handle 4-5 times their rated power for short duration, which is typically how long the transients last. The rest of the time you will only be using a few watts at most. So get the most power your wallet can handle.
The truth is not out there but within you.

#10 of 17 OFFLINE   NickSP

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Posted December 02 2002 - 04:50 AM

"I have only once heard the amps clip on the surrounds (Star Wars Episode II at 3dB below reference)"

Wow, you have 250W/Chan going to your surrounds and that still was not enough power? I don't understand this. Posted Image
Too much power is never an overkill!

#11 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 02 2002 - 06:33 AM

Nor do I, please explain, I know "Danes" areineffecient but geeze Louise. . .
Even Monkeys fall from trees.

#12 of 17 OFFLINE   Yogi

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Posted December 02 2002 - 07:28 AM

He could clip his surrounds if he had a huge theater room with 20 ft ceilings and inefficient speakers (<80 db). You only get 3db gain per doubling of power so it doesn't take much to reach 250 watts if your nominal listening power is couple watts. You need 100 times more power for the 20 db dynamic range of DD soundtracks. So in a large room with ineffiencient speakers if he is listening to 10 watts at dialogue levels he would need 1000W to fully reproduce DD peak transients.
The truth is not out there but within you.

#13 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 02 2002 - 08:15 AM

I would think that if the room was that big ( auditorum, chhurch) then he would use SR (sound reinforcement) ssspeakers like JBL Pros etc.
I dont think I would invest so much in "Conssumer" gear for a full house IMOPosted Image
Even Monkeys fall from trees.

#14 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 02 2002 - 08:22 AM

I would think that if the room was that big ( auditorum, chhurch) then he would use SR (sound reinforcement) ssspeakers like JBL Pros etc.
I dont think I would invest so much in "Conssumer" gear for a full house IMOPosted Image
Even Monkeys fall from trees.

#15 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 02 2002 - 08:28 AM

I would think that if the room was that big ( auditorum, chhurch) then he would use SR (sound reinforcement) ssspeakers like JBL Pros etc.
I dont think I would invest so much in "Conssumer" gear for a full house IMOPosted Image
Even Monkeys fall from trees.

#16 of 17 OFFLINE   Yogi

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Posted December 02 2002 - 08:35 AM

Roger that guyPosted Image
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#17 of 17 OFFLINE   Guy Usher

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Posted December 02 2002 - 08:41 AM

I mean it is a big room. . .
Web-TV SUCKS IMO
Even Monkeys fall from trees.