Question Different Power amplifiers for processor

Discussion in 'AV Pre-Amp/Processors & Power Amps' started by dollag, Jul 23, 2018.

  1. dollag

    dollag
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    I currently have 2 Nord one Mono blocks and using them as part of my 2.0 system. they have the sonic imagery op's

    I am going to replace this with an integrated amplifier (Lyngdorf tdai-3400) and the Nords will be partnered with a processor for my cinema set up (processor yet to be decided) in a 7.1.4 config

    I have always used all in one avr's so was wondering would it be best to keep all the power amplifiers the same?

    I will likely get another mono block so the lcr will be powered by the same amplifiers; however is this necessary?

    I spoke to Colin at Nord about this and he advised that there should not be an issue and should invest in one of his (or other manufacturer power amp for the surrounds) but then it raises the question, what is the point of the op buffer? and is a matching centre channel amplifier needed?

    I want the tonal balance to be accurate across all speakers but I am at a loss as people use all different types and mismatch power amplifiers. This is rather confusing. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks
     
  2. larkone

    larkone
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    The biggest issue of using mixed power amps is matching (or not) the gain characteristics.
     
  3. Rambles

    Rambles
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    Hello. My system has been evolving over the past couple of years and I have ended up with a mish-mash Frankenstinian combination of speakers and amps.

    Details in the signature. I don't hear any tonal differences. I think it is the pre-amp that shapes the audio signature and the power amp, if it works properly, should just faithfully amplify it and send it to the speakers.

    I use pro audio power amps with gain knobs, so level matching is pretty straightforward. Then the AVR / processor auto set up and room EQ fine tunes everything.

    I want to add that when I started out in this hobby I followed all of the best advice to the letter and was a little disappointed with the overall result, and I ran out of money pretty quickly. Since I became a little more experimental, things have been sounding much better. In particular, Klipsch speakers and the Crown XLS range of power amps have been quite a revelation. And affordable!
     
  4. dollag

    dollag
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    Thanks @Rambles we have touched base on this previously.

    I think the best thing to do is get a cheaper crown amplifier and do my own a/b testing with my nords. be interesting to see if i can here any noticeable changes.
     
  5. Rambles

    Rambles
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    Yes, I would be very interested to hear how you get on with that.

    Bax Music are doing them very cheaply at the moment and offer a 60 day money back guarantee:

    Search | Bax-shop | Your Music Revolution
     
  6. DodgeTheViper

    DodgeTheViper
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    Different power amps can, and very often do sound different to each other. If you’re using one to power the front three and a different one to power the Surrounds for example, you probably won’t notice the difference.
     
  7. uncle bale

    uncle bale
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    Just my $0.02. You should have matching power amps across the front, you will notice a tone difference there. For the rears, not so much, as there is not nearly as much information back there and it is usually ambience.

    If this was my system I would get another mono to run the centre, and what ever amp has enough power to run the rears. Don't worry too much about gain as any processor will allow you to balance the system.
     
  8. larkone

    larkone
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    Only if the gain on all the power amps have the same linearity, otherwise they will not all behave in the same way as the voltage is changed by the preamp.
     
  9. dollag

    dollag
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    The Nord one mono blocks have 26db gain and so do their multi channel.

    @larkone so what your saying is I will need a the gains of all the poweramps roughly the same?
     
  10. Rambles

    Rambles
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    I don't think that can be right, but I am not an engineer, just a consumer. I use and have used in the past a number of different power amps, currently I have a Behringer A500, a Crown XLS1002 and a Musical Fidelity M3i, as well as using some of the power amps on the Denon 4400.

    Once all the levels are balanced, and the gain knobs set, I don't have to touch anything again.

    The pre-amp in the Denon 4400 adjusts the volume, as the voltage to the amplifiers increases, the volume of the speakers increase exponentially.

    If I take SPL readings of all the speakers at the MLP, with the master volume on the AVR at, say, -20, they all match. If I turn the volume up to say, -5, they still all match. That is with 9 speakers being powered by four different amps!
     
  11. dollag

    dollag
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    See this is the issue It''s strictly conflicting information
     
  12. Rambles

    Rambles
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    I know, it's a nightmare :(

    I have just counted 16 amplifiers that have been in and out of my room in the last 18 months! I decided that trying the bloody things out for myself was the only way to be sure of what was right for my room / ears / circumstances.

    Different people have different priorities, I want best possible audio quality without having to re-mortgage the house. I am prepared to compromise on aesthetics and convenience (eg triggers) but not everyone is the same.

    I am happy with what I have now, both music and movies make me smile, and still surprise me with the subtle bits of audio that I can pick out, as well as the shock and awe effect on peaks. I do like a nice cheesy action film. I am hoping to make no further changes for a while. Famous last words ;)
     
  13. Jase

    Jase
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    Once level matched they'll be fine. The different gain will just mean you'd need to increase (or decrease) the channel levels more (or less) to hit the same SPL's.

    Say you have two identical speakers at the same distance but run with two power amps with different gain. One might need the channel level set at 0db whereas the other might need the channel level at +3db to produce the same SPL. Once levelled they'll just track the same as you increase/decrease the volume on the Pre-Amp/AVR.

    That's as I understand it (rightly or wrongly!).
     

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