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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
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View Poll Results: I measured the test tone at:
2 volts or less 306 40.05%
Between 2-5 volts 239 31.28%
Between 5-10 volts 98 12.83%
Between 10-20 volts 52 6.81%
Over 20 volts. 69 9.03%
Voters: 764. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 16th July 2018, 12:19 PM   #1241
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
Thanks for your results. Yes, open baffle is lossy and needs power, the smaller the baffle the higher the losses. I'd call the Manzanita a small(ish) open baffle. A big room will also soak up the sound.

When I had the Manzanitas in the lava cave, I could have used every bit of my Crest 700 WPC amp for headroom (75 volts RMS maximum.) But I kept the amp turned down to 28 volts RMS max to be kind to the tweeters. Had to sneak it up to 35 volts RMS max to get near the dynamics needed. Those would measure approximately 19V, 7V and 8V on the test signals.
Your 15.5V just goes to show how much headroom you need on a dynamic piece of music!

Good to get a report on the Manzie.
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Old 29th August 2018, 09:01 PM   #1242
drneilmb is offline drneilmb  United States
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As a newbie to audio, I really like this test for helping me understand power and loudness. I've built one pair of loudspeakers (MarkAudio Pluvia 7 in a ~13L vented cabinet) and I drive them with a 1970s Nikko 20W receiver. Currently they are on my workbench about 1 meter away from my head.



Playing the test tone, my voltmeter measured around 0.5V at the loudest volume setting that is comfortable for music listening. That was a surprise to me that I would only need a 1/4W RMS power amplifier in this location with these speakers. I knew that desktop use didn't require much power, but I didn't think it would be that small!


I'll repeat the measurement once the system moves out to its final destination in my living room. Thanks again for this simple approach to understanding how loud is loud enough. Anyone have plans for a DIY 1W power amplifier?


-Neil N0FN
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Old 29th August 2018, 09:28 PM   #1243
brian92fs is offline brian92fs  United States
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
Quote:
Originally Posted by drneilmb View Post
Anyone have plans for a DIY 1W power amplifier?
Sounds like a perfect candidate for a Amp Camp Amplifier!
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Old 29th August 2018, 10:05 PM   #1244
RafaPolit is offline RafaPolit  Ecuador
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
Quote:
Originally Posted by drneilmb View Post
...Anyone have plans for a DIY 1W power amplifier?
Well, actually, Nelson Pass - none other - has plans for a 1W AMP:
FAOW

He calls it the First And Only Watt (FAOW) Amp.

So, have fun!!!, you can certainly trust the source!!!
Rafa.
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Old 31st August 2018, 12:30 AM   #1245
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
Thanks for posting Neil. So you got 05V on the test signal at your loud setting? That's pretty low, but I've been there with some speakers. Please do test again when you move them into the living room. I'll bet the voltage will go up quite a bit.
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Old 8th October 2018, 08:15 PM   #1246
mark100 is offline mark100  United States
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
OK, a bit of a voltage test goof I hope folks find amusing/interesting.....

I needed to do a little glue repair, spider-to-cone, on an 18" driver from a double 18 sub.
Pulled the driver, glued it, and set it on top the sub, which is physically located about 10ft away from the other double 18" in the room.

Started cranking some tunes using just the one good sub, but began wondering if passive resonance would move the driver under repair any, to the detriment of the glue setting up.
So I put my finder on the cone, and felt next to no movement. But I noticed the other driver in the sub cabinet was resonating quite a bit. Cabinet works I thought happily!

In fact, the in-box driver had so much passive resonance, I decided to measure the voltage it was putting out while cranking Red, Red, Wine

Over 3v rms peaks at least 50ms long...along with an average rms right around 1v.
Coming out of the driver, not going in LoL
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Old 13th October 2018, 04:12 AM   #1247
Ians505 is offline Ians505  United States
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Pano,

This is exactly what I was looking for! Thanks for the test tones and description of how to use them... very clever. Short version: The highest volume level I've ever used resulted in 8.65V using the 120Hz tone on an 8 ohm mid woofer with sensitivity of 86 dB. I was hoping for <5V, but am happy I know what I need now.

Long version: I have a tri-amped active system that I've been listening to for a few years now with some DIY speakers I've made. Recently I've wanted to try some new amplifiers and needed a way to determine the voltage required to power my mid woofers. I've been happy with my relatively low powered amps, but have always wondered if they were enough.

Currently, I use a 2 channel amp to power the left tweeter/woofer and a 2 channel amp for right tweeter/woofer. I have a separate amp for sub. The t/w amps produce 25 watts rms of clean power per channel. That suggests that I am most likely experiencing some clipping on the woofer channels when listening at party levels. It's funny because they really sound clean.

Thankfully my normal "very loud" listening level resulted in almost exactly 5V. Your test tone was very useful in my case because 120Hz is just about right where the woofer requires the most voltage (above my high pass filter and below BSC).

I was hoping to build some 25 watt chip amps to power the speakers. I looks like 75 watts for the woofers would be more appropriate if I want to prevent the signal from hitting the rails. Of course, 25 watts is more than enough for the tweeters.

Anyone else measure a higher voltage than expected?
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Old 13th October 2018, 01:47 PM   #1248
simon7000 is offline simon7000  United States
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I just did an arena, as it was very time limited my guys set the limiter for 18.89 volts RMS for all the loudspeakers. All the loudspeakers were full range and it was just fine. Next week they will go back and make the limiter frequency selective which they could quickly figure out how to do that with a rather quirky processor.
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Old 13th October 2018, 09:33 PM   #1249
Pano is offline Pano  United States
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A Test.  How much Voltage (power) do your speakers need?
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark100 View Post
Over 3v rms peaks at least 50ms long...along with an average rms right around 1v.
Coming out of the driver, not going in LoL
Wow, the driver was moving that much from just the airborne bass?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ians505 View Post
This is exactly what I was looking for! Thanks for the test tones and description of how to use them... very clever.
You are welcome. It's good to understand where you are in terms of headroom and clipping. Usually we just don't know.

Quote:
Originally Posted by simon7000 View Post
I just did an arena, as it was very time limited my guys set the limiter for 18.89 volts RMS for all the loudspeakers.
That's surprisingly low. Let us know what other limits you find. Thanks for the data.
__________________
Take the Speaker Voltage Test!
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Old 16th October 2018, 04:36 AM   #1250
johnjen is offline johnjen  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by drneilmb View Post
snip
…Anyone have plans for a DIY 1W power amplifier?

-Neil N0FN
I am currently building a monster of an amp with a ground pounding 1.5w/ch output for my headphone system.

It currently has 15 xfmrs with 2 (or possibly more) to be added up the road.

It is 24" long and 12" wide and needs at least 4" of depth.

It has 2) 45 output tubes and 2) 6J5 line drivers which means it uses 2, single triodes/ch.

A really simple analog section.

The power supply is simple too but is a massive LCLCL overkill design using parafeed output xfmrs, all for that earthquake triggering 1.5w/ch.

I'm aiming to be wonderfully surprised and gratified by all that lovely Tube Magic in the Mids.

JJ
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