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Old 17th August 2006, 04:40 AM   #1
GD3 is offline GD3  United States
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Default Target values for a headphone amp?

I reposted my question from another forum, hope this is OK,

I'm designing an amp and I'm trying to gage the voltages I will need to drive different brands of 'phones to respecatble levels.

Grado (all) are 98dB at 1mv. At 32 ohms thats 31.2 nanowatts.??

Senn and AKG make 120 ohm models ranging from 101-104 dB at 1V. Thats 8.33 miliwatts.

Senn makes several at 300 ohms. Claiming 97dB at 1 volt. Thats 3.33 miliwatts.

So how is 31 nanowatts supposed to create a SPL in the same neighborhood as 3.3 miliwatts?

Thats a difference of a million to one. What I suspect is Grado is on crack.

But what I really want to know is how many (peak or RMS values, please) volts should an amp need to drive the 300 ohm Senns to raucous levels? What amps are you Sennheiser users listening to?
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Old 17th August 2006, 06:11 AM   #2
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You can probly get down to 1.5V battery cell to get the wattages you want, or 3V (2 battery cells).

I don't know a hole lot about headphone ratings but the power ratings you want can easily come from 1.5-5V supplies and give you more than enough power to make you loose your hearing.
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Old 17th August 2006, 08:06 AM   #3
jcx is offline jcx  United States
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for headphones the usual unit is dB/mW, a few are rated in dB@ 1 V rms; but I have seen the obviously wrong dB/mV nonsense a couple of places

I posted this example calc on head-fi:

which also points to Headwize - giving you pretty much the best sources for headphone info on the web
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