Benefits of external amplification and pseudo-EX set-ups

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Joseph Anlacan, Aug 10, 2001.

  1. Joseph Anlacan

    Dec 21, 1999
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    I was reading a thread on the benefits of external amplification and a question came into my mind. One person in a thread said that when he used a separate amp for his center channel, his main amp was "unloaded" and was better able to power the L & R mains. Is this true? Or does this simply mean the center channel amp within the receiver goes unused?
    Applying this to a pseudo EX set-up: Aside from the additional rear center channel, can the improvement of sound using a pseudo EX set-up be also due to the unloading of the main receiver from doing the surround amplification?
  2. Selden Ball

    Selden Ball Second Unit

    Mar 1, 2001
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    The "unloading" usually means that less current has to be drawn from the amp's power supply. Power supplies are usually not designed to be able to supply enough current to drive all channels at their maximum rating simultaneously. Most movies, for example, don't usually drive the surround channels at high levels at the same time as the fronts.
    As a result, unloading can make an audible difference when you're listening to music with lots of dynamics (it can reduce clipping of the peaks) or if your amp is running at a significant fraction of its rated power -- with inefficient speakers, in a large room, or if you simply like loud music.
    These are all "obvious" differences. Many people claim to be able to hear more subtle improvements at lower sound levels.
    I hope this helps a little.
    [Edited last by Selden Ball on August 11, 2001 at 07:24 AM]

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