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Hardware Volume Limiter Solution (1 Viewer)

garretb

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Garret
Hello all,
I'm hoping someone here can help solve my problem.

I'm working on putting together an audio system for a fraternity house. All the audio equipment has already been purchased and set up; however, we have already had a problem with people turning the volume up too loud and we have already blown out the high end speakers. This begs the question, is there any kind of simple hardware limiter that could be put in place to prevent the speakers from getting blown? (And the other equipment getting destroyed in general as a result of excessive volume?) The volume does not even need to degrade gracefully. A device which simply shut off the audio if it would damage the equipment would be perfect. Is there any such device? The music input comes from individual iPods and the volume output of the iPods themselves can not be controlled.

The best commercial product I've found which is even remotely relevant seems to be the Terk VR1 Automatic TV Volume Controller (amazon.com/gp/product/B00008VWOJ/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top) Though that seems like it probably sucks and I don't need quiet sounds to be increased I just need the too loud ones to not happen. I found sound.westhost.com/project53.htm but I would rather not have to build something myself if it can be avoided. Also I'm not even sure how or where that device would be integrated into the current setup.

Furthermore whatever the solution is it would ideally cost $50. Essentially I am looking for the cheapest and crudest possible method to protect the already established audio equipment. I can't just get some other piece of hardware that also happens to have this functionality. I need a dedicated piece of hardware because everything else is already in place. If anyone can help I'd greatly appreciate it!
 

Wayne A. Pflughaupt

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No problem, all you need is a compressor/limiter, like this or this. These are probably the cheapest ones on the market but should do fine for your application.

A compressor/limiter doesn't shut down the system, but keeps the volume from going past a certain level, that you determine. However, it will have to be connected in front of the system's amplifier, so hopefully you're using an outboard amp. And hopefully the amp and compressor-to-be are located someplace where people can't get to them...

If the price is too high, these things sell pretty cheap on eBay.

Regards,
Wayne A. Pflughaupt
 

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