Originally Posted by mikeH
Hey, I need a little help. I know precious little about stereo equipment, but my receiver is starting to flake out on my and will need to be replaced soon. When I replaced my huge college speakers because they didn't fit in my living room, I bought a subwoofer so that music wouldn't sound tinny on the little speakers. Worked fine, I was satisfied. Now I want to be sure that I get a powerful enough amp to drive the speaker set up, at least until I eventually upgrade some of that (still a ways off).
It is a passive subwoofer, and says that it handles 100 W (RMS) and Maximum Power 200W. I have vague recollections that seem to be in conflict. On the one hand, too powerful of an amp would blow out the speakers, right? On the other hand, it seems like I've read somewhere that I acually need more power so that the amp can drive the speakers without getting close to its own capacity. What do I actually want?
(Oh yeah, I'm trying to be the loudest house on the block, I just want to enjoy listening to music.)
Thanks guys, and if there's a better thread to ask, or if I should start a new thread, just say so.
Actually, that's a false perception. Power doesn't blow speakers, distortion does.
You dont necessarily need either option. There is also a school of thought that an amp sounds best in a certain range of its power band. At the volumes you are looking to listen at, pretty much any amp will work. The stuff you are talking about gets much more into hi-end concepts. I wouldn't worry about it until you want to upgrade.
You should be concerned more about underpowering than overpowering. Underpowering doesnt allow the drivers in the speakers to create enough sound pressure in the room. Overpowering just makes it so the volume knob is used at a much lower range. Technically its much easier to blow weaker speakers with a very powerful amp, but you'd have to way overdrive them.
One way to know is to look up the sensitivity of the speakers. Its usually written on them, otherwise the manual. If they are about 89db or over, pretty much anything can run them. Lower than 89, into the 86 and 83 range and you need to think about it. Dynaudio, for example, is famous for their inefficient designs are are notoriously difficult to run.