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Is 3 amps the only way to go???
Is 3 amps the only way to go???
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Old 9th November 2018, 05:29 PM   #1
John8888 is offline John8888
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Default Is 3 amps the only way to go???

Hi guys,

As you will probably guess, my knowledge is very limited in this direction.
I am considering using a 3 way active crossover in my stereo system. My question is, would I need to buy 3 separate amplifiers for this or is there such a thing as 1 amp that can take the 3 separate signals to the speakers?
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Old 9th November 2018, 05:37 PM   #2
Bfpca is offline Bfpca  Canada
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Is 3 amps the only way to go???
You can use a multi channel amp. They are typically used for home theatre setups. I recently purchased a Cambridge Audio Azur 551 receiver that offers 7 channels At 60w/ch. This particular receiver has preamp inputs for all channels allowing you to use it as a power amp if you want. Currently still on sale at Partsconnexion for 300$ us. Used home theatre amps are out there as well. There are lots of choices if you search for Home theatre amplifiers.
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Old 9th November 2018, 07:57 PM   #3
John8888 is offline John8888
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I was hoping there was something a bit more dedicated in the hifi department. I have tried the AV amps and found they don't have the sound quality compared to hifi amps.
Naively I thought that active crossovers could go in line after the power amp but this makes it a complicated affair to get some nice sound with a set of 3 way speakers.
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Old 9th November 2018, 08:25 PM   #4
russc is offline russc  England
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Active crossover means it goes before the amplifier.
One amplifier (or 1 channel of a multi channel amplifier) per way.
Means each amplifier is only amplifying part of the signal; the same amplifier is not amplifying both the bass and treble frequencies.
Read up and consider the many permutations. Several amplifier boards/modules DIY assembled in a case can be a cost effective option. Be aware you will need to balance the system for a flat frequency response.
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Old 9th November 2018, 09:08 PM   #5
chrisb is offline chrisb
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So, as you've figured out by now, for a fully active system, you'll need one channel of power amplification for each separate pass-bands - 6 in this case. Also keep in mind that this is exactly the type of application where you can tailor the amp of power to the driver's requirements - i.e. the bass drivers will want the lion's share of total system power, and mids / tweeters can usually get by with far less. Lotsa valid approaches here.

There are numerous mainstream hi-fi makers offering multi-channel (i.e. more than 2 per "black box") that are intended for home theatre rigs - up to 12 channels in one chassis should you be so inclined. Check folks like Rotel, Marantz, etc - but be prepared for both sticker shock, and the most likely offering of either more or less channels than you'd need here.


Another option is to build your own multichannel amps - either chip or class D - a method that can allow you to tailor the power requirements more precisely.
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Last edited by chrisb; 9th November 2018 at 09:13 PM.
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Old 9th November 2018, 10:42 PM   #6
John8888 is offline John8888
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Thank you for the advice guys, you have been amazingly helpful.
I understand a lot more than I did, I now just need to make some choices...
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Old 9th November 2018, 11:59 PM   #7
MAAC0 is offline MAAC0  Portugal
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Some old Sony AV receivers also feature analog 5.1 input.
Look for those black series with the Yellow composite video signal inputs.
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Old 10th November 2018, 12:16 AM   #8
Michael Bean is offline Michael Bean  United States
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Quote:
Originally Posted by John8888 View Post
Thank you for the advice guys, you have been amazingly helpful.
I understand a lot more than I did, I now just need to make some choices...
It's a whole lot to chew on at first. I recommend you take a look here: DIY Audio Articles.

Mike
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Old 10th November 2018, 10:43 AM   #9
Bfpca is offline Bfpca  Canada
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Is 3 amps the only way to go???
The reason I mentioned the Cambridge audio receiver is that the audio quality is much better than the typical cheap AV receiver. It is set up so that the power amplifiers can be used directly with no dsp. Last time I looked they were still in stock at Parts Connexion for something like 75%off. Emotiva offers good value in multi channel amplifiers IIRC. Have a look at their products.
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