140 watts or 220 watts...Parasound.

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike_T_, Feb 15, 2002.

  1. Mike_T_

    Mike_T_ Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm narrowing my search down to two Parasound models. One of them puts out 140wpc into 5 channels, and the other puts out 220 x 5. I'm driving Studio 100's mains, and studio center, Eoson tower surrounds.

    The only speakers that really need 200+ are the mains...would I notice a huge difference between the amps? It seems like overkill to send that much power to the surrounds (which don't really get that much info sent to them in Home Theater + I'm a 2 channel music guy) and the center which certainly doesn't need 200 + watts to make it sound great....
     
  2. Scott-C

    Scott-C Supporting Actor

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  3. Mike_T_

    Mike_T_ Stunt Coordinator

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    Oh I totally agree that the bulk of HT sound is in the underrated center channel.. I was just saying that it is a relatively small speaker and much more effecient than large main speakers such as the Studio towers. So, it would seem that to get the true benefit of a center channel, wouldn't require a very large amount of power. Perhaps getting a 2 channel, 200+ wpc amp, and matching it with a 3 channel amp that puts out 150 wpc would work well. I would just want to make sure that they are made by the same company.

    I am more interested in the actual audible difference between a 150wpc amp and a 220wpc amp. Is it worth the extra money?
     
  4. Jeff H

    Jeff H Stunt Coordinator

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    The wattage power is not going to be very noticeable. You will probably never use all the watts available in the center or the surrounds. If you like 2 channel music, I would by a 100 watt 3 channel amp for the center and rears and get an excellent 2 channel amp for the mains. I am not an amp expert, but you rarely see a high end end over 100 watts. Going from 100 to 200 watts is only a 3 db increase in sound. I have Carver amps bridged to 300 watts for my mains and the meter never goes anywhere near 100 watts, even when I crank my system. If you are set on the 5 channel amp, I would try both and see if there is a sonic difference. Good Luck
     
  5. AjayM

    AjayM Screenwriter

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    The difference between 140w and 220w is going to be under 3db.

    Your studio 100's are rated at 88db, and since you have 2 main speakers, add around another 3db (because of the pair), there will be some extra from room gain, but I won't add that in since it's hard to predict. So we're at 91db effecient.

    91db - 1watt

    94db - 2watts

    97db - 4watts

    100db - 8watts

    103db - 16watts

    106db - 32watts

    109db - 64watts

    112db - 128watts

    115db - 256watts

    Now the amp's rating is probably some type of an RMS rating so there is still some room for peaks there, but I doubt you ever listen with the average volume much over 90-95db (REAL loud), so either amp will probably do fine.

    Your biggest problem is the center channel, it's rated at 87db and you don't have the benefit of extra speakers to give a little extra gain, sooo,

    87db - 1watt

    90db - 2watts

    93db - 4watts

    96db - 8watts

    99db - 16watts

    102db - 32watts

    104db - 64watts

    107db - 128watts

    110db - 256watts

    However the max input power on the center is 130watts (constant signal).

    Basically either way I think you'll be satisfied, the more powerful one may give you a little cleaner sound at max volume or with very dynamic material at higher volumes (there's some music, and I'm sure movies, that can have 10-15-20db peaks).

    Andrew
     
  6. Mike_T_

    Mike_T_ Stunt Coordinator

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    Excellent help guys! Thanks!!!! I think I want a 5 channel amp because I'll eventually move up to a pre amp processor.
     
  7. BruceD

    BruceD Screenwriter

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    Well, I can probably help here.

    I own the 140 watt Parasound 1205a amp. I asked John Curl, the designer, if I would benefit with twice the watts/channel for my 86dB sensitive main speakers with the stereo model 3500's 350 watts/channel, he said no.

    My mains are 4 Ohm Dynaudio Contour 2.8 towers. This means I actually get 200 watts/channel @ 4 Ohms.

    I can drive these to reference levels for HT without compression or distortion. Even when listening to music at a fairly steady 80-90dB for short periods of time, there is no strain.

    One of the most important specs is amps. The 1205a supports 45 peak amps/channel.
     
  8. Edward M

    Edward M Stunt Coordinator

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    Hi Bruce,

    I find your response interesting. I have Paradigm studio 40's, 20's, CC, and possibly adding ADP's. I have been running the 40's "small" for movies.

    I'm having a hard time deciding between the 2205 & the 1205.

    Based on responses to earlier posts of mine I was beginning to get the feeling that anything less than 200wpc is a waste of my time. I'm having a hard time accepting that.

    The 2205 is out of my price range and I need to eventually cover all 7 channels. Now i'm thinking start with the 1205 and if I feel I need more for the mains I could add a higher power amp for front L&R. Since for music i'm mostly 2 channel.

    Ed
     
  9. Ricky T

    Ricky T Supporting Actor

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    Ed,

    Get the 1205. You can always find a 200 watt two or three channel parasound later. 100+ continuous watts pretty loud, and it's the dynamic peaks that matter more anyway.
     
  10. Ron Duca

    Ron Duca Stunt Coordinator

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    I have the same basic question as Mike_T_, although my speakers are from Paradigm's monitor series...Monitor 9's (91 dB), CC-350 and Mini's for rears. I'm sure the 140 watt amp would provide plenty of power for my speakers, especially compared to the Yamaha RX-V995 reciever (100x5)I'm using now. I'm wondering if I would notice a significant difference between the 140 watt and the 220 watt Parasounds, and if so, what kind of difference. I'm trying to determine if any sonic differences would be worth the $800 difference in price. And if I go with the 140 watt model, will I be wishing I had the bigger one if I ever upgrade my speakers.

    Any thoughts or advice would be appreciated.

    Ron
     
  11. Mike-W

    Mike-W Extra

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    I had the 1205 (140 watt) amp and upgraded to the 2205 (220 watt). I am using them to drive Energy Veritas 1.8 mains, 2.0C center and 2.0R surrounds. I am using the AVC-2500U as my processor(which I upgraded from the AVC-1800).

    I ugraded for two reasons, one you never have enough power and two, improved specs. The differences are 60 amps vs 45 amps, 118 db S/N vs 117 db and a damping factor of 1000 vs 800.

    I am able to hear a difference (mainly in bass response) and don't regret the upgrade.
     

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