Adding an external amp to your receiver is a good idea

Discussion in 'AV Receivers / Processors / Amps' started by Tony V., Mar 7, 2019.

  1. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    First off, volume and gain are not the same thing... Two volume controls do not equal a gain control... Look at any schematic of a stand alone preamplifier with a volume control and an amplifier with a gain control... Second, two volume controls adds unwanted noise, especially the cheap volume controls they put in AVRs... Third, two preamplifiers add unwanted noice, especially the cheap preamplifiers they put in AVRs... Forth, there is no getting around all the extra noise in an all in one box like an AVR, why add another AVR, full of noise, to the signal chain... And we won't even talk about the issues with Gain Structure here...

    Asere asked for a solution that would make his system sound better... I submit that a second AVR will not make his system sound any better and may actually make it sound worse... The most reasonable solution would be to use the best sounding AVR, only pick one, the Dennon or Onkyo, and add a Simple Stand Alone Amplifier to the Preouts for a R & L Channel...

    I don't understand why this is such an issue... Almost every one on this thread, as well as many other threads, has added a Stand Alone Amplifier, to power their main L & R speakers, from their AVR or has a second, totally separate, two channel analogue vinyl system...
     
  2. Grayson Dere

    Grayson Dere Moderator
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    "The most reasonable solution would be to use the best sounding AVR, only pick one, the Dennon or Onkyo, and add a Simple Stand Alone Amplifier to the Preouts for a R & L Channel..."

    I wholeheartedly agree!
     
  3. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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    Im not in disagreement here but it wont hurt to try, obviously an external amp is the best option but the Onkyo 805 is not a cheap receiver and had much better components in it than most.
     
  4. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    What's the difference between balanced and unbalanced audio? When is it needed?
     
  5. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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  6. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    If an amp drives the speakers.
    Does this mean if you connect a preamp to a receiver the receiver is then driving the speakers. In that case what does the preamp do connected to a receiver?
    Isn't it better to have an amp to connect the speakers to for more power or does the preamp do the same although the speakers are connected to a receiver instead?
     
  7. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    It may be true that the Onkyo 805 has better components than most of its peers in its class... However, compared to other examples of stand alone Preamps the Volume (attenuator chips) in most ARVs, including this Onkyo, are in fact pretty cheep, err cheap... The same is also true of the Preamp and Amp stages... We just can not compare Apples and Pomegranates... It might be a good idea to review the Block Components of what an Audio Video Receiver is... This article seems to be a pretty good example... https://www.audiosciencereview.com/forum/index.php?threads/inside-of-an-audio-video-receiver-avr.7/
     
    #32 ddude003, Mar 9, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2019
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  8. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    It might make sense for you to review the basic block components of a Audio Video Receiver and compare these block areas with Stand Alone Components such as Sources, PreAmps and Amps... Google is your friend... Here is an interesting article that may help better your understanding of what is in an AVR... Take a drink from the firehose...

    https://hometheaterhifi.com/technical/technical-reviews/options-by-supplier-and-price/

    If this link somehow violates this forums policy I apologize, my intent is to help educate not in anyway to promote another website or forum... I have no allegiance to any manufacturer, company, vendor, website or forum...
     
    #33 ddude003, Mar 9, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2019
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  9. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    Thanks for the links guys. Im still very new to separates as you can tell and I appreciate your patience.
    If you have say an external amp of 200 watts dedicated to 2 ch.
    Are you really getting the 200watts per channel?
    I know with a receiver it means really less.
     
  10. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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    Yes, a reputable well made amp it will output what it says.
     
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  11. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    Can I do well with an amp rated 205 per ch or is 250 per ch better for 200 watts max speakers like Svs Prime?
     
  12. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    This may help...

    SVS Prime Tower Spec (from the SVS product website)
    Rated bandwidth: 30 Hz-25 kHz (±3 dB)
    Nominal impedance: 8 ohms.
    Sensitivity: 87 dB (2.83V @ 1 meter full-space, 300-3kHz)
    Recommended amplifier power: 20-250 watts.

    Other variables to consider are Size of Room and typical Listening Distance from speakers…

    A 200 Watt RMS @ 8 ohms Power Amplifier should be plenty powerful…
    RMS (Root Mean Square) is average or continuous per channel…
    Peak may be 1.5 up to double momentarily before clipping depending on the quality of the amp…

    An example with your SVS Prime Towers and a reasonable quality Power Amplifier capable of 200 Watts RMS, with a listening position 10 feet from the speakers…

    You can use one of the many on line calculators to get an idea of what the listening levels can be with with your speakers and a 200 watt RMS Power Amplifier…

    In this case the calculator at https://geoffthegreygeek.com/calculator-amp-speaker-spl/ shows this configuration gets you into the 95db+ range which is pretty loud… Likely damage to your ears with a few hours of exposure… Some is good, more is better and too much is just right... ;^)
     
    #37 ddude003, Mar 11, 2019
    Last edited: Mar 11, 2019
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  13. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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  14. Grayson Dere

    Grayson Dere Moderator
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    The AVR breakdown is fantastic! Thanks a lot for this link : )
     
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  15. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    I think I narrowed down the amp I am looking for. The Parasound hca 1500a or hca 2200. The 1500 is THX Ultra and 2200 no THX.
    These amps are designed by John Curl and are classics. I know THX is a certification but is the THX important considerin they were manufactured decades ago?
     
  16. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    Both these Parasound HCA Amplifiers would serve you well... They are both Class AB amps with JFETs for class A and MOSFETs for class B... The 1500a being 205 watts RMS x 2 @ 8 Ω and the 2200 being 250 watts RMS x 2 @ 8 Ω... The THX certification is mostly about a minimum set of performance requirements (read quality of sound) that Lucas Films felt necessary to reproduce his movie(s) experience in the theatre and the home... You can read more about THX on their website, Google is your friend... I would not choose one of these amplifiers over the other based solely on the THX certification...
     
    #41 ddude003, Mar 12, 2019 at 9:40 AM
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2019 at 10:20 AM
  17. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    Thanks I'm very familiar with what THX is. I just thought its strange for the more powerful 2200 has no THX when all the hca's or most at the time had THX. Especially when the 2200 is more expensive.
     
  18. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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    some people like that THX badge on the front, it makes them feel special and they will pay extra for it.
     
  19. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    I agree I'm one of those that won't pay more for thx badge. I just don't see why they didn't give it to the 2200 being more expensive with the bigger amp. I may as well pay less and get thx on the 1500.
     
  20. Tony V.

    Tony V. Moderator
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    Getting THX certification costs money for the manufacturer so they simply chose not to expense the extra cost. THX certification dose give you piece of mind that it will meet their testing standards and there is nothing wrong with that either. With a home theater receiver it does mean alot more in that it will function closer to the specifications.
     
  21. ddude003

    ddude003 Active Member

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    Purely speculation on my part... Company pays for the THX badge on a lesser model and upsells to a better model with virtually the same specs... No need to badge this its the same with a few more watts... And yea, certification cost time, money and product... Lucas is not what it once was, just ask those banned from the ranch... ;^)
     
    #46 ddude003, Mar 12, 2019 at 5:20 PM
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2019 at 8:27 PM
  22. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    Thanks guys. I've been reading your replies. Great info on how avr amps work and how amps work with speaker sensitivity and levels. I think Monoprice Monolith 2 could be a good option too. Anyone have experience with them?
     
  23. Grayson Dere

    Grayson Dere Moderator
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    Stereophile magazine had very positive things to say regarding the Monolith 3, same amp just 3 channels instead of 2.

    https://www.stereophile.com/content/music-round-83-ati-monoprice-3-channel-amplifiers-page-2


    "..The sound was right and full, with an emphasis on the lower end of the audioband.."

    "..reproduction of tonalities was more than acceptable, and its soundstages, in stereo or in multichannel, were ample, wide, and deep, with voices and instruments stably positioned on them.."
     
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  24. JStewart

    JStewart Active Member
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  25. Asere

    Asere AV Addict

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    Thanks. Thinking about all this. The question is will I be able to hear a difference going from a receiver. That's something only I can answer.
     

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