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Old 18th February 2005, 03:23 PM   #1
PierreG is offline PierreG  Canada
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Default Bass Amplifier for biamping - What type?

I have some newby questions. I am planning to biamp with my maggies MG3.5 speakers. I will build an active crossover to replace the external passive xover of the speakers. I already have a Musical Fidelity Amp that I would keep for the mid/high. The crossover will be a 200Hz lowpass at -18 db/octave (same as the existing passive crossover). I would also build an amplifier. I would like to know what type of amplifier would have excellent result for the bass section. Class A, Class B, Class A/B, transistor type, Mosfet type? I think (maybe I'm wrong) that there are types of amplifier that would be better for the bass. I also wonder if an Amp that is dedicated to the bass only could be cheaper with great quality.
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Pierre
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Old 20th February 2005, 07:27 PM   #2
PierreG is offline PierreG  Canada
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I'm sure that there's somebody here that have enough knowledge or experience about amplifiers to give me some advice.
Thanks in advance
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Old 25th March 2005, 11:42 AM   #3
keyser is offline keyser  Netherlands
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Hi Pierre,
I have just Biamped myself, and am pleased with the sound. especially the bass has gotten better. I have bought an off the shelf PA-amp for the bass, keeing my NAD 216 for the mid and highs. PA amps are very inexpensive (I am not saying cheap) opposed to hifi amps. They are usually able to deliver a lot of power. Just what the bass needs. Some PA amps have slightly higher distortion than hifi amps, but this isn't really audible. Neither on the low, nor on the mid and high section. IMO the bass needs a lot of power to be dynamically convincing. A PA amp buys you most power and headroom for your money.
keyser
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Old 25th March 2005, 12:55 PM   #4
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I'm actively bi-amped, using a MC DH-500 on the highs and an old Bryston 4B on the woofers. I'm quite happy with the quality of the sound. Both of the amps will drive just about any load, and the Musical Concepts mods make the Hafler a great amp better. The 4B was always harsh on the top end, but the bass is right there. I replaced the PS caps in the 4B a couple years ago, to good effect.

What model of MC amp are you using on the top-end?

Doug
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Old 25th March 2005, 02:43 PM   #5
PierreG is offline PierreG  Canada
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Quote:
Originally posted by keyser

They are usually able to deliver a lot of power. Just what the bass needs. IMO the bass needs a lot of power to be dynamically convincing.
keyser
That why I think I could buid a fairly inexpensive DIY Amp for the bass, but I don't know what type. Solid State, class A or A/B?, class D? or T?



Quote:
Originally posted by doug71zt

What model of MC amp are you using on the top-end?
It is a Musical Fidelity A3.2CR Power Amp.

keyser and doug71zt, do you have electronic crossover for your biamping setup?
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Old 25th March 2005, 04:01 PM   #6
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Solid state class A/B would be my preference for a bass amp, although some would likely point to a switching amp (class D) as being more efficient. I don't know how deep into the DIY you are, but it is my opinion that an well-designed used power amp would be a good option for you. Adcom/Hafler/Bryston/others can be picked up quite cheaply, and perform quite well after some basic mods.

I am using a Kit-built Marchand cross-over in my system. It is over 10 years old now, and has performed without a flaw.

Doug
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Old 25th March 2005, 04:36 PM   #7
Giaime is offline Giaime  Italy
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Me too would go for a PA amp... right here I have an RCF mono pa that has been give to me for free... when I'll convince that person to give me another identical one (he has a garage full) I'll biamp... I like PA amps for their sicere big transformer, but usually you have to beef up power supply capacitance...
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Old 25th March 2005, 05:20 PM   #8
PierreG is offline PierreG  Canada
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Quote:
Originally posted by doug71zt
Solid state class A/B would be my preference for a bass amp, although some would likely point to a switching amp (class D) as being more efficient. I don't know how deep into the DIY you are, but it is my opinion that an well-designed used power amp would be a good option for you. Adcom/Hafler/Bryston/others can be picked up quite cheaply, and perform quite well after some basic mods.

I am using a Kit-built Marchand cross-over in my system. It is over 10 years old now, and has performed without a flaw.

Doug
You may be quite right doug71zt. What are theese basic mods? Caps, wires, connectors and diodes?

For the crossover I would build one from scratch with the same frequency and slopes than the original passive one. No adjustments. Only some op-amps, resistors, caps and power supply. Not as versatile as a Marchand but much less expensive.
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Old 26th March 2005, 11:09 AM   #9
keyser is offline keyser  Netherlands
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Hi Pierre,
I use a Behringer cx3400 crossover. It works quite well.
If you prefer building your own amp, I think either class D or A/B should be the way to go. Both should work just fine. I believe an A/B to be easier to build though, but I'm not sure. I haven't ever built my own amps, because I believe better and more reliable amps are available on the second hand market, for less money than it would cost to build your own.
The brands Doug suggests are known to make very reliable good quality equipment.
6s with your project!
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