how exactly does the volume level translate into real life numbers? (nagative numbers, etc...) I know this question might sound absurd, but it is something that has been bugging me for a long time. Growing up in the days of 1-10(20) volume ranges, I have never truly understood exactly how the current distinctions work. My best guess, and what I am working off of, is that when I reach the '0 db level' I am at reference level, or what the makers of said musical(movie) soundtrack determined to be ideal listening level for theatres. (Exactly how do they determine it, and do they differ, or is their an industry standard?) Where my question gets a bit deeper, is what exactly is the ratio as one departs from 'zero' level? Is each number simply just 1db above or below this level? (as I think of it currently) Another question that comes to mind is the distortion factor. Are receivers generally designed to output to 'zero' or reference level, and above that distortion increases drastically? Makes sense, just trying to confirm my own suspicions. Lastly, and I think also very important.... Are all reference levels the same? For example: I'm currently running a denon avr-1700, 70w rated, more like 80w per channel real life... Now, if I upgrade to an NAD receiver that drives each channel at 110w, will the 'volume' still be the same when I have my receiver set at 0db, or reference level, only cleaner? I have many other questions along these lines, many just small irritating ones, but I'd love to get them figured out once and for all. If you might be able to throw some links my way going into great detail about this subject, I'd be grateful. Even simple explanations would be great. I don't need to be able to write technical manuals on the subject, just have a good understanding. Then again, physics and electronics are interesting to me, so highly detailed info isn't a detractor. Thanks for your help!