Speakers are 6 ohms, receiver has 4/8 switch - which one and why?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Dan Kolacz, Jul 17, 2002.

  1. Dan Kolacz

    Dan Kolacz Stunt Coordinator

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    Hello again fellow HT lovers,

    I have a Sony DA5ES receiver that has 4/8 ohm switch on the back.

    I have some older Infinity floorstanding speakers that are 6 ohms. My center channel is also matched at 6 ohms.

    My rears are 8 ohms, and I just ordered a subwoofer that I am assuming is 8 ohms.

    What setting should I have the receiver set to?

    I tried both, but not sure what to listen for to discern a difference.

    Which one in theory would produce a better sound?
     
  2. Michael Lomker

    Michael Lomker Stunt Coordinator

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    I keep mine at 8 ohm but I doubt there is much of a difference in sound. No speaker has a flat ohm response across the frequency band, anyway. Any setting will be a compromise.
     
  3. Michael R Price

    Michael R Price Screenwriter

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    I've heard that the 4 ohm switch on many receivers just engages a current limiter on the output for protection, so you should probably leave it on the 8 ohm setting unless you're running real loud and are worried about damaging it.
     
  4. Jeremy Stockwell

    Jeremy Stockwell Supporting Actor

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    My mains are rated at 6 ohms (center & rears are 8) and I've run two different Kenwood receivers at 8 ohms for years without any problems. Looks like running your receiver at 8 ohms is the consensus.

    JKS
     
  5. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    Yeah, I agree it should be ok. Unless your speakers have a low of below 4 ohms, the 8 ohm setting should be ok. My 6 ohm speakers have a low of 4 ohms, so I'd still chance it and use the 8 ohm setting for that. If you had 4 ohm speakers, I'd bet they'd have a low of at least 3 ohms and you'd want to limit current on your receiver or you'd end up clipping easier.
    Leave it at 8 ohms and see how it goes, but don't max it right out and try to push the limits. Just use it like you normally would listening to music & movies etc [​IMG]
     
  6. Dustin B

    Dustin B Producer

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    Micheal's got it. Higher end amps have no switch, you can just plug speakers with 2-8ohm nominal loads into them and forget about it. The amps with the switch engage a current limiter or something similar to prevent a 4ohm speaker from taxing the power supply too hard (which would result in overheating and shutdown/meltdown).

    Don't flip the switch unless your receiver starts shutting down on you.
     
  7. Chris PC

    Chris PC Producer

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    Yeah, basically, do to the constraints of physics and the costs of amplifier design amplifiers can't do it all. Amps can put out voltage ok to obtain certain wattages at certain loads, but they cannot all handle higher current, even at lower voltages. Thats why not all 100 watt amps are the same, as it were.
     
  8. John F. Palacio

    John F. Palacio Supporting Actor

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    Can you coerce the switch to stay at an in-between position between 4 and 8. That should give you six.
    JUST KIDDING GUYS![​IMG]
     
  9. Chuck Kent

    Chuck Kent Supporting Actor

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