Can a better receiver improve sound quality?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Shawn.G, Dec 20, 2002.

  1. Shawn.G

    Shawn.G Second Unit

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    Does a receiver with more watts really make a huge difference? I am going to run 2 polk r40 floorstanding mains off the receiver with surrounds and a center channel and a sub with a plate amp. My receiver now has 80w to both mains channels. Is it worth it to upgrade to 100 or 120 watts to each channel? My room is 10.6 by 12, and I don't listen to the music(10%HT) very loud. Thanks.
     
  2. Wayne Ernst

    Wayne Ernst Cinematographer

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    Shawn,

    A different receiver can have a dramatic effect on the sound. Which receiver are you currently running and which receivers are you looking at?

    The watts can/can't have a dramatic effect. Keep in mind, for each 3 dB increase, you need to double the amplifier power. However, different receivers can have dramatic sonic differences.
     
  3. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    maybe...it all depends upon the levels that you're listening at, how they're distributed to the speakers and what the true power of your receiver is under something like 'all channels driven' conditions. If possible see what you can find out from reviews of the products you're interested in with regards to performance measurements.
     
  4. Jeffrey D Smith

    Jeffrey D Smith Stunt Coordinator

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    Your topic is different then your post, although related.

    Don't assume that more watts equals a better amplifier. Many manufactors over rate their systems for one, and what is more, a difference of in watts is usually not going to provide much of an audio diiference. (When the wattage is in the same ball park.)

    In other words, don't pick brand X over brand Y just because it has 10-20 more watts per channel. I suggest trying to go out and listen to them yourself, which can be deceiving in itself. However it is something. Also look for user opinions on this board and others.

    There are many more factors to what makes a receiver good, just do a bit of searching and you will find plenty of info to help.
     
  5. Joe Sabato

    Joe Sabato Auditioning

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    Most likely not. If you already have a quality receiver that can deliver power and current (especially if you have a speaker approaching 4 ohm impedence) to the speakers that they demand, you will not be able to hear 1 to 1.5 db difference in power unless the overload characteristics are abrupt.

    I have had Harmon Kardon and Denon receivers that were rated at lower power than others I was considering yet sounded better and did not get "hard" sounding when overloading like other less expensive receivers with more rated wattage.

    My current Denon is an 80 Watt/Channel receiver powering 5 JBL Studio series 3 ways (which have a similar sensitivity to your Polks) all set small with 2 separate Subs. My room is 15 x 20 and is open to a 12 x 18 room and the system will play very loud. Save your money for something else unless you think your receiver is of marginal quality. Good Luck.
     
  6. Shawn.G

    Shawn.G Second Unit

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    Thanks. I think I'll wait on the receiver and save money for a DIY sub. My receiver came with a home theater in a box(a big mistake buying that), but it works fine. It is a 5.1, RCA, Dolby Digital receiver. It's only a year old, so I'll upgrade later. Thanks again for the advice.
     

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