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Multi-Way Conventional loudspeakers with crossovers

What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.
What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.
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Old 26th August 2020, 02:06 PM   #1
mtidge is offline mtidge
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Default What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.

This is more a thought experiment, I have built a couple of 3 way speakers with passive crossovers. I think about making them active, but I hit the same wall, price. For a 3.5 way setup I would need 8 channels of amplification. I think class D would work for me, but every option I look into, new power amps, kits, raw amp boards, Hypex plates or used multi-room amplifiers it always ends up costing $1,200.00 USD or more. Then I need to add a 2 in and 8 out DSP like the Aurora and I stop thinking and stick with my roughly $300.00 3 way passive crossovers. Am I missing something or is active still just expensive?
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Old 26th August 2020, 03:21 PM   #2
ILikeFoodz is offline ILikeFoodz  United States
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That's been my reason for not going active too. However, I found these a few months ago:

Dayton DSPB

Different modules can be combined together for a full system.
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Old 26th August 2020, 03:36 PM   #3
mtidge is offline mtidge
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This is funny, I have some of these, I used it for my last 3 way design, I was able to test a bunch of crossover designs before building my passive. Saved me a lot time and parts.
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Old 27th August 2020, 12:01 AM   #4
AllenB is offline AllenB  Australia
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What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.
You can buy just 1 more amplifier. Change one cross to active, when you are finished you can convert it back to passive and do another cross. In the end you can keep the processing to do global EQ.
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Old 27th August 2020, 04:44 PM   #5
mtidge is offline mtidge
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Still looking for 8 channels of quality amplification for a reasonable price. Here is what I've considered.

IcePower

2 ICEpower 200ASC Class D Audio Amplifier with Power Supply Module 1 x 200W
2 ICEpower 200AC Class D Audio Amplifier Module 1 x 200W
1 ICEpower 50ASX2SE Class D Audio Amplifier with Power Supply Module 2 x 50W

Not cheap, but I'm concerned about input buffering and the fact that 200ASC and 50ASX2SE have different gains. The 50ASX2SE would be for the tweeters, but I would still need to cut the woofer levels to match.

The Emotiva BasX A-700
I would have to go 3 way and not 3.5 way and now Emotiva doesn't even list the 7 channel on there site any more.

Hypex

Plate amps , I don't want or have room to put them in the cabinets so I would have to build them into a chassis. Also, not 3.5 way, and different gain on the tweeters.

Can't get the Hypex boards, they OEM only, would have to get a complete amp from an OEM assembler, not cheap.

Any brilliant ideas out there? I don't think Shure/Womdom/Dayton is the answer either.
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Old 5th September 2020, 09:46 PM   #6
DougL is offline DougL  United States
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Just a guess, but I think you are overestimating your power requirements.
I did a 3 way OB with a pair of 3 Channel T amps. They were rated 30 WPC.
All the drivers were ~ 90 DB efficient. I had to be careful not to make my ears ring.

Target something in the 25 to 50 WPC. Use 4 identical amps.
Without the reactive crossover, the amps are much better behaved and sound better.
The Dayton DSPB is a very good suggestion IMHO.
$250 with the power supplies for 8 channels x 50 watts.

Good Luck with whatever you decide.

Doug
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Old 5th September 2020, 11:31 PM   #7
hifijim is offline hifijim  United States
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To reinforce what DougL is saying, if you have an active crossover at 250 - 300 Hz, and you drive the both the upper and lower sections with 50 W of pink noise, you will achieve the same SPL as if you had driven the entire system with 200 W of pink noise from a single amp.
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Old 6th September 2020, 03:45 AM   #8
AllenB is offline AllenB  Australia
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What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by DougL View Post
Without the reactive crossover, the amps are much better behaved and sound better.
Where are you getting this from, Doug? It isn't so.
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Old 7th September 2020, 04:59 AM   #9
DougL is offline DougL  United States
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Allen,
That has been my experience.
No other source.
Many issues with amplifiers are magnified by reactive loads.
Will an active crossover make an amplifier "perfect"? No.
Will it have less issues in a simple load? Probably.

YMMV

Doug
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Old 7th September 2020, 06:14 AM   #10
AllenB is offline AllenB  Australia
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What amplifiers to use for 3.5 way active speakers.
The speaker itself is a passive component and its load is complex. A crossover can change this, but voltage sources have a certain immunity to the variations.

Besides, the only way to make it a perfect load is to add a passive conjugate, even if your filter is active.
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