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Help with selecting the right Power Amplifier

Wharfedale Evo 4.2

edjamesx

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Now, this is a great response. I'm currently using a Marantz SR 7013 AVR without any external amplification. I'm not in a boat saying PA doesn't do anything at all. But, adding a PA that too under 50-1l with his speaker setup, I felt it wouldn't be a great value to his chain. His speakers were Dali Zensors and matching Centers and surrounds. He was already very happy with his listening levels and his room doesn't seem that big or he isn't going to put more money in the PA. Thus, I suggested if dynamic range is what he is craving, getting a speaker that is dynamic or getting the top of the line AVR should just suffice for convenience and double the power.. I know double the power just adds 3db to the volume level. The PA also delivers cleaner power than the AVR. But, if the speakers are already playing its best, why not change the speakers if dynamic range is what one seeks.

I'm too concerned about clean power that's why I went from SR 5009 to SR 7013.i could have went with the 6013, I chose 7013 for that slightly bigger power supply and able to play with less distortion. I didn't choose 7013 for its fancy front screen or Auro 3D support. PA definitely makes a very good sense, if one is driving a speaker that's meant to be designed to cater in a stereo setup. Yes. PA does definitely make the speaker sing without tapering at higher levels. But, if one is happy at the listening levels just with the AVR,i felt the PA wouldn't add more value to the chain.
It will add value definitely . Considering the speakers can handle power of more than 150 -200 watts.
These days speakers are coming up with excellent specs, But finding a matching AVR is not easy and cheap.
Also Unfortunately even high end AVR provides power till 200 watts / 2 channel driven , u will get roughly 70 to 80 watts RMS per speaker in average in 11.1 setup ).
Anyday Power is the main fuel for speakers , where other specs are for the purity and refinement of the fuel .
That's where These Power Amp shines in purity ,refinement and quantity . Power amps brings the dynamics in sound where no AVR can bring out such dynamics.

Its true that high sensitivity speakers can be driven by low wattage AVRS and it gives decent sound. But it works best when you feed the demanded power.

I noted many benefits of adding power amps.
Good Sound dynamics and great sound stage
Crystal Clear Vocals
Good mid punch (i never got such mids with AVR) / Looks like Now only my mid bass speakers working on my towers after adding Power Amp.
Less Noice level
Good for AVR/ since power distributed to Power Amp
Listening on High volumes are great and sweet / it does not hurt the ears . (With direct AVR out , the same volume level is not bearable).

If someone look for next upgrade in their HT setup , they should consider adding Power Amp and check with existing speaker setup , then later upgrade speakers if needed.

Any day power Amp is going to add great value to any speaker setup.
 
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syednizamudeen

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Even for small rooms I feel a good PA makes a good difference.Also for high sensitivity speakers too..
Presently most of AVR power ratings are exagerrated for marketing reasons.( Also mostly 2 or one channel rated )Only a bench test may reveal it's true power rating.
Presently OP is driving 7 speakers using X4500 in which I beleive around 30 to 50 watts approx may be pushed by AVR on all channels.
Good PA provides cleaner power on the discrete channels in which you can enjoy the dynamics ,punch etc.
Also based on my experience more details will be revealed when u start listening on higher levels ( mine is around -7.5db to - 1.5db depending upon the tracks) .But it's majorly depends upon user to user ,Most of people don't like to listen on higher levels.
Also I have used Zensor 5 initialy as fronts,within that I could able to see the difference by adding PA.
Based on that I can tell the OP will definitely gets benefited by a adding a good PA.
My current speaker is Wharfedale Linton Heritage as fronts.

Coming to my Power amp ,its ATI 1506 ( used one in mint condition) sourced from abroad through a dealer ( I paid an hefty price even for a used one,will ping you the price if you are really interested).New ones prices will be very very costly.ATI is one of highly regarded manufacturer of PA in US for HT.If you can find one in the market ,it's highly recommended to grab it.
That's fantastic...1506 looks like a beast.. That looks like a real amp.. I really wonder how you guys import.. :)
 

RajithKumar

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The signal from amp to speaker is a voltage (V). Speakers don't like to be disturbed, so they impede or resist (R).
To hold that voltage, the power supply section must have enough current capacity (I).
Ohm's law says, V = I*R or I = V/R
Power (P) = V*I or V(sq)/R

When impedance dips, current draw is higher hence power draw is higher.
If current maxes out something has to give, that's voltage level.
When this happens, it clips or distorts.

To hold the voltage at intended level, a good PS section capable of sufficient current is necessary.
Then come those big/fat caps that can provide instantaneous current too.

If your speakers are say 87-89dB efficient/sensitive and have a stable impedance behavior across audio spectrum,
- the power draw in normal listening levels will be 10-20W
- power draw in HT/movie levels will be 20-40W
- the rest of the juice in amp is headroom for those intense passages in music/movies

A bit of math, but hope you get the idea.
Cheers,
Raghu
OMG! Man U might have explained it well...May be it's the basics ...But seriously for me these formulas makes me crazy...:p
 

rksingh1

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So a basic question - how do I know if my setup needs poweramp? I hear no clipping, no hiss, volume level is good, haven't seen any speaker crying for more power or any indication of such sorts. The front towers are bi-amped.

Oh, a second question - if someone is spending fortune getting Denon 4500, or Marantz 7014/8014 or Yamaha Aventage series - does than not eliminate the need for getting a poweramp? Those AVRs are a beast anyway. If you still feel a power amp is needed in setup, why not get the normal AVRs and add a strong poweramp with it?
 

Love4sound

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So a basic question - how do I know if my setup needs poweramp? I hear no clipping, no hiss, volume level is good, haven't seen any speaker crying for more power or any indication of such sorts. The front towers are bi-amped.

Oh, a second question - if someone is spending fortune getting Denon 4500, or Marantz 7014/8014 or Yamaha Aventage series - does than not eliminate the need for getting a poweramp? Those AVRs are a beast anyway. If you still feel a power amp is needed in setup, why not get the normal AVRs and add a strong poweramp with it?
Well already a lot of detailed explanation is given in the previous replies so please go through for better understanding. I’ll explain to u in simple words. Higher model avr’s will have more power and better processing. Adding a PA will help in the speaker performing to its full potential. Unless u hear something better then the current set up you won’t know what is missing. I had Yamaha yht 299 and thought what more do I need. Then upgraded to 2400 and Dali speakers and heard so much details that I didn’t hear in yht299. When I upgraded to 4500 it was even better.
 

rksingh1

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Adding a PA will help in the speaker performing to its full potential
So buy a budget AVR and add strong poweramp? Will that be good?

Rephrasing the question -I got v585, I can either upgrade to some AVR costing 1L, replacing v585 or keep v585 and pair it with poweramp? Which will give best bang for the buck?
 

Love4sound

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So buy a budget AVR and add strong poweramp? Does will that be good?

Rephrasing the question -I got v585, I can either upgrade to some AVR costing 1L, replacing v585 or keep v585 and pair it with poweramp? Which will give best bang for the buck?
The 585 doesn’t have pre-outs so you can’t add a PA.I think it has only for the front two channels. You can for sure get an avr that doesn’t cost as much as the 4500 like the marantz 5013/14 and add a PA and get good sound stage. But as I said higher model avr’s will have more features for example the marantz 5xxz series doesn’t have audyssey xt32 and has the basic audysey room correction. The Denon 3600 and marantz 6xxx series has xt32.
 

RajithKumar

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I think It's a bad idea,if u push more then the AVR pre may clip..The best will be a processor and Power amp in terms of sound clarity. Since for pre pro combo budget will be very high,people go for a better AVR with preouts .
Luckily the newer AVR models of D&M has pre mode ,so the clipping can be avoided here.
 

skumar

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I got v585, I can either upgrade to some AVR costing 1L, replacing v585 or keep v585 and pair it with poweramp? Which will give best bang for the buck?
If you are done exploring and enjoying the current combination, you can think about (a) adding a 2ch amp (I presume V585 has FLR 2ch pre-out) and then (b) upgrading the FLR speakers and then (c) upgrading the AVR with 5Ch preouts and a 5ch amp...
There are no rules, no right/wrong way of upgrading... boils down to how much time/effort/money one could spare.
 

ankitbhargava

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Sorry to jump in the topic with the
You can have pre owned Marantz AVR like SR6xxx series with 7.1 analog inputs. This Marantz can be used as power amplifier to amplify surround back , Atmos and VOG channels. Denon will amplify only basic five channels. This will ensure sufficient power and headroom for each channel. You may save good amount of money with little compromise in sound quality.
Sorry to jump in to the topic to discuss what is suggested in this response.
Could a spare AVR be used as Power Amp?

I have been thinking to add a 5 Channel Power Amp to my setup for a better performance of LCR and also add 2 more height channels to have 7.2Subs.4 setup. Emotiva A 500 did ring the bell in terms of specs, reviews and cost
 

syednizamudeen

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Sorry to jump in the topic with the

Sorry to jump in to the topic to discuss what is suggested in this response.
Could a spare AVR be used as Power Amp?

I have been thinking to add a 5 Channel Power Amp to my setup for a better performance of LCR and also add 2 more height channels to have 7.2Subs.4 setup. Emotiva A 500 did ring the bell in terms of specs, reviews and cost
Of course a spare AVR can be used as a Power Amp provided it has preamp inputs.. (possibly every receiver would have). Use any input source in the spare avr (that you want to treat as power amp) such as CD or auxiliary rca in or whatever. Use stereo or Pure Direct (if available) and you can connect your main front speakers to the spare avr if you feel that spare avr is better... :)
 

ankitbhargava

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Of course a spare AVR can be used as a Power Amp provided it has preamp inputs.. (possibly every receiver would have). Use any input source in the spare avr (that you want to treat as power amp) such as CD or auxiliary rca in or whatever. Use stereo or Pure Direct (if available) and you can connect your main front speakers to the spare avr if you feel that spare avr is better... :)
I have a spare Marantz 6009 (with damaged HDMI board) which could be replaced I believe for less than Rs. 35000 (I had checked the price earlier). Would this be a better proposition as against buying a something like Emotiva A 500? I have read all your posts on this topic and I understand principally you may not recommend a PA itself :)

My Room size is 20 feet X 18 feet X 9.5 feet and my listening level is -4db (Master Volume) generally.
 

syednizamudeen

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I have a spare Marantz 6009 (with damaged HDMI board) which could be replaced I believe for less than Rs. 35000 (I had checked the price earlier). Would this be a better proposition as against buying a something like Emotiva A 500? I have read all your posts on this topic and I understand principally you may not recommend a PA itself :)

My Room size is 20 feet X 18 feet X 9.5 feet and my listening level is -4db (Master Volume) generally.
If you listen at - 4dB reference, going with a Emotiva BassX A500 would be a gamble since the emotiva is just going to put out 110w in 2ch 8 ohm (but, should put a quality continuous power than the AVR though). But, I'm pretty sure your volume level won't increase and in rare case it might sound a tad bit better.. A very tad bit. Can shed some load from your though if you run other channels though the Emotiva. But, I'll feel afraid to take that step.. If return is possible, its worth a try.

I think you should consider an Emotiva XPA line, or crown XLS line or (used) something with least 200-300wpc to get a descent improvement in your case.. :)

Just my thoughts... :)
 

ankitbhargava

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If you listen at - 4dB reference, going with a Emotiva BassX A500 would be a gamble since the emotiva is just going to put out 110w in 2ch 8 ohm (but, should put a quality continuous power than the AVR though). But, I'm pretty sure your volume level won't increase and in rare case it might sound a tad bit better.. A very tad bit. Can shed some load from your though if you run other channels though the Emotiva. But, I'll feel afraid to take that step.. If return is possible, its worth a try.

I think you should consider an Emotiva XPA line, or crown XLS line or (used) something with least 200-300wpc to get a descent improvement in your case.. :)

Just my thoughts... :)
Crown XLS is a great suggestion indeed, I think even XLS 1002should be sufficient to drive front L&R
 

ankitbhargava

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If you listen at - 4dB reference, going with a Emotiva BassX A500 would be a gamble since the emotiva is just going to put out 110w in 2ch 8 ohm (but, should put a quality continuous power than the AVR though). But, I'm pretty sure your volume level won't increase and in rare case it might sound a tad bit better.. A very tad bit. Can shed some load from your though if you run other channels though the Emotiva. But, I'll feel afraid to take that step.. If return is possible, its worth a try.

I think you should consider an Emotiva XPA line, or crown XLS line or (used) something with least 200-300wpc to get a descent improvement in your case.. :)

Just my thoughts... :)
estimating power requirement ..

13 feet from my speakers (which are 97db sensitivity at 1 meter ), I lose 6db at 13 feet so it becomes 91db.
Now my listening level is -4db from reference, adding the peaks and some headroom I want to convert this 91 db into probably 115db.
91db : 1w
94db : 2w
97db : 4w
100db : 8w
..
115db : 256w

XLS1502 with 300w would just be sufficient? does it makes sense? :)
 
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syednizamudeen

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estimating power requirement ..

13 feet from my speakers (which are 97db sensitivity at 1 meter ), I lose 6db at 13 feet so it becomes 91db.
Now my listening level is -4db from reference, adding the peaks and some headroom I want to convert this 91 db into probably 115db.
91db : 1w
94db : 2w
97db : 4w
100db : 8w
..
115db : 256w

XLS1502 with 300w would just be sufficient? does it makes sense? :)
300w should be pretty sufficient in your case.. 97 dB/w?? What speakers are that?? Horns?? Cerwin Vegas?? :)
 

Prodigy

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You can look at the power amplifier from IndiqAudio as well. They are great and has a THD of 0.05% across range and they claim it hands down. It’s a dual monoblock which has independent transformers for 2 channels and has 200w + 200w. This can drive any speakers without breaking a sweat.
I have a PA from them and very happy with it.
try it out.
 

edjamesx

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Atleast thats what the manual says or probably I am unable to understand the maths which is also highly likely :p
Yeah Speaker sensitivity is 97 db , which is high standard. Your speakers are capable of handling max 500 watts . Though it can perform well with direct AVR output , Adding power Amp will definitely improve sound quality. 300 watts RMS would be more than sufficient for home to perform max speaker's potential,
I also noted Adding power Amp also drive speakers great with lowest frequency response settings from AVR , at 40 HZ, 60 HZ. The Speakers have great mids and highs with this settings. But with direct AVR settings , sound was little muddy with 40 hz to 60 hz. With Power Amp the mid bass is tight , and it don't loose highs at this freq response range. (with direct AVR it looses high end , and misses mid punch).
 
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