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Old 24th August 2011, 02:17 AM   #1
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Default Amplifier Input Voltage Question

Kind of an off-the-wall question ... I've been searching extensively to see if this has been asked, but no luck so far.

Car/boat/motorcycle amplifiers are all listed as 12V input, sometimes listed as a range ... for example, 9V to 15V. What happens if you hook such an amplifier up to an input voltage below its minimum? For instance, 6 volts.

Would the amplifier put out a fraction of its rated power? Would it simply refuse to power up? Or would it do something else entirely?
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Old 24th August 2011, 02:36 AM   #2
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Most likely won't do anything, or if it does produce any sound at all, it will probably be very distorted.

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Old 24th August 2011, 02:36 AM   #3
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Well that's disappointing ... thanks for satisfying my curiosity though.
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Old 24th August 2011, 02:39 AM   #4
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Location: Louisiana
For chip amps, they may do any of the above.

For amps with switching power supplies, 6v is too far below the design voltage (12v). Most amps would refuse to power up. The power supply driver ICs in most amps require more than 6v to operate. If the power supply driver IC doesn't function, the amp won't function. This applies to amps with switching power supplies that use a driver IC (virtually every amp that produces more than 20w RMS into 4 ohms).
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