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#132650 - 03/21/06 07:06 PM Amps????
jimmienorton Offline
veteran

Registered: 01/29/06
Posts: 150
Loc: maryland
OK im thinking about adding an 2channel amp for my fronts, I want something in the 300-400watt area. What is the deal with amps like Crown that are $300 and amps like Outlaw an Adcom that are alot more per channel? Im thinking of maybe even a 5 channel or 7. Im really confused about the whole thing. My avr has 130 per channel and I know thats not the real wattage, will I hear a big change by going to 300-400 watts?
_________________________
2-M80v2 VP150 4-QS8 EP500 DENON 4306 Panny AE900 Toshiba HD-XA1/PS3

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#132651 - 03/21/06 07:32 PM Re: Amps????
ratpack Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/30/05
Posts: 1155
Loc: Alabama
There is and has been lots of discussion about the amp subject on this board.

I'm not sure that there is a good or easy answer to your question.

At the risk of being crass, "it all depends."
_________________________
The Rat. M80s, VP-150, QS8s, SVS PC 20-39+, OPPO, Onkyo 703s, Harmony 880 Sony 60" SXRD HDTV

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#132652 - 03/21/06 07:39 PM Re: Amps????
HomeDad Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 12/29/05
Posts: 3301
Loc: Central,California
I think asking if you will hear a big change is a very subjective question, you may or may not. In my setup I have noticed improvement using an amp, especially at higher listening levels.
If you go with a 2 channel amp 200wpc at 8ohms will probably translate to 300wpc at 4ohms.
If you do decide to buy an amp, Imho I would go with Outlaw, Adcom or one of the other quality amps to match the quality of your equipment.
_________________________
A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kick boxing.

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#132653 - 03/21/06 07:43 PM Re: Amps????
bugbitten Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 2339
Loc: Madisonville, KY
You could use the Outlaw 7500 for your 2 or 3 channel. The unused channels mean more available for 2 or 3 channel use.

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#132654 - 03/21/06 07:54 PM Re: Amps????
Richie Offline
veteran

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 137
Loc: IL, USA
There will be a change if you use a more powerful amplifier. But it is a controversial topic around here! :-)

For my two front M80s, I use a QSC SRA 3622 amplifier (1100 watts x 2 @4ohm). More info here:
http://www.qscaudio.com/pdfs/sraspec.pdf

For my two rear M80s, I use a Carvin 1800HD (600 watts x 2 @4ohm). More info here:
http://www.carvin.com/products/single.php?ItemNumber=HD1800&CID=PWA

The QSC amp's fan is silent. The Carvin amp's fan is just barely audible if you stand within a few feet of the amp.

I am using the Denon 3805 for the VP150 center speaker. But I might get a separate amp for that one too!

Using separate amps has made an audible difference when I listen to music or watch movies. The headroom provided by the amps makes a significant difference to sound effects in movies. YMMV.


_________________________
4 M80s/VP150/EP600/Denon AVR-5308 & DVD-2910/
2 QSC SRA3622(1100wattsX2)/Carvin 1800HD(600wattsX2)

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#132655 - 03/21/06 08:07 PM Re: Amps????
bugbitten Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 04/06/05
Posts: 2339
Loc: Madisonville, KY

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#132656 - 03/21/06 08:22 PM Re: Amps????
chesseroo Offline
connoisseur

Registered: 05/13/02
Posts: 4829
Loc: western canada
Amp power will only make a difference at very high sound levels assuming the speakers you are using even require more power (driver size, frequencies played and impedance being the major factors). The difference really only applies to distortion.
Otherwise the power simply goes unused.
Anyone who has utilized a switcher to test sonic character between 2 solid state amps of similar design type (e.g. Class A/A/B) will know just how impossible delineating any difference in sound quality really is. The only variable is whether an engineer specifically designed an amp to filter or enhance certain frequencies through the use of various components. Most engineers strive for a flat response curve as it related to the most accurate sound reproduction a vendor can provide.

An amp of Richie's size will only drive the speakers into a physical excursion limit if the volume is turned up too far (the cones will sound like they are slapping). More power does not equate to an infinity of SPL increases.
I have maxed out my M60s with a 225w Anthem amp which is not of a dual mono design. However my much larger Tannoys can take more power as that same amp will run these speakers into distortion at elevated levels.


_________________________
"Those who preach the myths of audio are ignorant of truth."

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#132657 - 03/21/06 08:47 PM Re: Amps????
tomtuttle Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/20/03
Posts: 8288
Loc: Tacoma
My opinion (not experience ) is that the Denon 4306 is a pretty high-quality piece of equipment that does likely produce close to its rated power with very little distortion.

The Crown amps (and some other "pro", instrument or PA amps) have higher wattage ratings, but can sometimes run loudly (apparently the QSC and Carvin are not in this category). Generally, they also tend to generate somewhat higher rates of distortion. I was unaware of QSC, but am now quite fascinated with their products.

There is a decent short article here that talks about the importance of not only power, but also distortion and signal-to-noise ratio. Axioms are already very efficient speakers. Remember that to get a volume twice as loud, you need TEN times as much power. If you do not already own a SPL meter, I strongly urge you to get one (like the analog Radio Shack version) and quantify just how loud "loud" is to you. Listening for long periods above 110db can cause permanent hearing damage, and I suspect that your Denon is capable of generating 100db with your speakers without too much sweat unless you are listening in a cathedral.

To echo The Rat, it definitely depends. If you listen at very high volumes AND in a very large room, the extra headroom might be useful to you. I do not assert that employing separate amplifiers makes no difference. However, I continue to believe that it is also important to ascertain whether or not you REALLY can discern a difference, whether the difference is preferable, and whether you find that the investment required justifies the incremental difference.
_________________________
bibere usque ad hilaritatem

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#132658 - 03/21/06 09:12 PM Re: Amps????
Wid Offline
axiomite

Registered: 06/22/03
Posts: 6720
Loc: The Peoples Republic of Il.

.One really does not know if you would benefit form an external amp or not. I haven't had a receiver in my music system in so long I really can't make a fair judgment. One thing I do know is the only times I have ever had a speaker fail on me when I was using a receiver. It was from pushing the receiver into clipping. One thing I don't think there can be much arguing over is you are more likely to damage a speaker when playing your music to high levels with not enough power.

I have even had a power amp (215 @ 8ohm) go into protect mode when listening at high levels. Since going with the Rotel, Axiom combo I have not experienced any problems what so ever. I do at times really push it too, well over 100 db.

Give it a try and see if you would indeed see an improvement.

_________________________
Rick


"A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity." Sigmund Freud


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#132659 - 03/21/06 10:11 PM Re: Amps????
Richie Offline
veteran

Registered: 01/06/06
Posts: 137
Loc: IL, USA
Thanks for creating the links!
_________________________
4 M80s/VP150/EP600/Denon AVR-5308 & DVD-2910/
2 QSC SRA3622(1100wattsX2)/Carvin 1800HD(600wattsX2)

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