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Analog Line Level Preamplifiers , Passive Pre-amps, Crossovers, etc.

What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?
What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?
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Old 18th September 2018, 02:48 PM   #1
Alialiali is offline Alialiali
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Default What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?

Hi everyone (newbie first post),

I want to make a simple preamp circuit that takes L and R channels and outputs 2 of each. In my newbie brain, that's 2ch audio to 4ch audio. I imagine this should be simple, and I guess I could just use a splitter wire (but wouldn't that reduce my volume?). I have no idea what this kind of circuit is, so I am having trouble finding one. If someone could give me the name, I am sure I can find a reference circuit from TI or elsewhere.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 18th September 2018, 03:12 PM   #2
EssB is offline EssB  United Kingdom
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Various names. I call them a distribution amp, others call them an active or buffered splitter.
There was a thread just the other day NE5532 buffered Audio splitter which links to this 100W Ultimate Fidelity Amplifier.
You could modify that circuit by splitting it in half and adding an extra input and you'd have what you want. You could of course just use splitter cables, much simpler.
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Old 18th September 2018, 03:17 PM   #3
multisync is offline multisync  Canada
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depending on your source and what you want to do a simple 1 in 2 out connector would do the job nicely.
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Old 18th September 2018, 03:25 PM   #4
mjurban is offline mjurban  United States
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What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?
A “Y” splitter will probably work, if you’re driving with a fairly low impedance source into two fairly high impedance inputs. However, if you’re driving it with a 50K volume control, you may have problems. I would certainly try the splitter first. No sense solving problems you may not have.

That said, if you do need to do it electronically, the circuit you’re looking for is a buffer.

Regards,
Mike
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Old 18th September 2018, 03:52 PM   #5
Alialiali is offline Alialiali
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Wow, thanks for the speedy responses everyone. All very useful information. I'll definitely try two Y splitters and see where it gets me.
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Old 18th September 2018, 09:54 PM   #6
xrk971 is offline xrk971  United States
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What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?
If you have enough drive from your source, and the loads (amp inputs) are high impedance, a Y splitter with a pair of 220ohm to 2k ohm resistors may work just fine. Try it. If you need to drive two rather difficult loads, then add a unity gain buffer opamp after each resistor. It’s also called a “fan out” or distribution amplifier.

Maybe something like this (the first opamp may not even be necessary):
Click the image to open in full size.
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Last edited by xrk971; 18th September 2018 at 09:58 PM.
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Old 19th September 2018, 10:01 AM   #7
Alialiali is offline Alialiali
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Are these Y-splitter cables just passive electrical connections?

I'm now totally baffled by low/high impedance sources/loads - seems I have some reading to do. Is there some kind of primer, or overview documentation/book that every beginner should read?
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Old 19th September 2018, 11:35 AM   #8
JMFahey is offline JMFahey  Argentina
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This is the main question:
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alialiali View Post
Hi everyone (newbie first post),

I want to make a simple preamp circuit that takes L and R channels and outputs 2 of each. In my newbie brain, that's 2ch audio to 4ch audio.
And the answer is :
No.
No way.
Nothing like that happens.
You still have 2 channels.

After that, any discussion about splitters,impedance, etc. is irrelevant; technically interesting but not addressing the main question.
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Old 19th September 2018, 12:27 PM   #9
Alialiali is offline Alialiali
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Thanks for this. I don't really understand the point, though. I want to experiment with attaching two stereo amps on a single stereo source so I can have 4 speakers. That's all. Next step, I might make a low filter and add a sub woofer.
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Old 19th September 2018, 12:42 PM   #10
Mooly is offline Mooly  United Kingdom
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What is the name of the circuit that takes an audio input and outputs two?
Connecting two power amps to a typical modern solid state line output stage should not cause any problems at all.
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