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Old 26th January 2009, 08:34 PM   #1
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Default seeking advise for 5.1 HT using t-amp

The thread on the Psyclone Nodus PSP dock (Another Tripath Amp) gave me an idea to put together a 5.1 HT setup in the basement (mostly for the kids to watch movies and play games). I'd very much appreciate some advise.

1) Configuration: Well, the front L/R and rear L/R are easy. The problem is the center and the sub. As I understand it, the t-amps (at least most of them) can not be bridged further. I suppose I can build/find a powered sub not based on a tripath chip, but what can I do with the center channel?

2) This may be off-topic for this forum... I'm considering the Zaph fullrange based on the HiVi B3S for the "5" in 5.1, but am a bit concerned about the low sensitivity, especially given that I'll be using the relatively low power t-amp. Is my concern legit, or am I worrying too much?

3) Any suggestion on a good powered sub for this setup?

TIA for any comments/suggestions!
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Old 26th January 2009, 09:34 PM   #2
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1) 2 options; either parallel the center channel or put the unused channel on a dummy load. A 32 Ohm 10 Watt resistor will work fine. Potentially you could later upgrade this by having a bi-amped speaker system. For example you could run all the front channels bi-amped with 4 t-amps with the last t-amp powerering the surround speakers.

2) HiVi B3S on t-amps? Forget that idea, right now! The 8 Ohms and 81 dB/W/m (that's eighty-one!) means the t-amp can't even push it to 90 dB peaks at a distance of one meter at full volume. In fact the speaker can only produce 96 dB absolute peaks. That's completely laughable.
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Old 26th January 2009, 09:43 PM   #3
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Location: Chicago, IL
You could use two drivers for the center channel and power them with one Tripath channel each, but with the same signal (mono).

Those drivers are cheap enough you could run them in pairs, then you get four ohms, not eight, for a bit more power. I'm sure the kids would think the row of little drivers would look pretty cool.

You could also twiddle with the value of the coupling cap in the amps. If you select it a little higher than normal to block some of the really low frequencies (< 80hz?) the little speakers don't know what to do with, you could--theoretically--get more sound energy where it counts.

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Old 27th January 2009, 05:40 PM   #4
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Well, I guess the HiVi B3S isn't such a good match for t-amps...

If anyone has suggestions for better suited DIY speaker plans for this setup, I'd be very grateful. It looks like none of the cheaper designs on Zaphaudio is of suffcient sensitivity.

I probably should scoot over to the speaker forum for this. Will do that now. In any case, thanks for the advise about hooking up the center channel. That really helped clear my mind!
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