Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

amplifiers, receivers and loudspeakers
lbls1
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lbls1 » 24 Nov 2019 21:52

I tend to trust the rated spec of an amp or receiver; However as many will know there are vast differences in sound quality between units, and of course the quality of your speakers will make most of the perceived differences in sound loudness and power.

The reality is that the better your loudspeakers are, in terms of sound qualitiy and response, the less wattage you will need to achieve a good and loud sound response. I have heard very good and loud music reproduction coming from modest powered amps (as low as 30 watts per channel). The higher powered amps will have greater intensity of power and properly set up, will seem to never run out of volume (meaning your hearing limit will yield to the added input of your amp).

Your music listening area counts as well. Most dwelling spaces will do just fine with a modest amp. High powered amps are better for studio situations where you are amplifying instruments as well as equipment, or very large spaces such as a dancehall or small auditorium.

lenjack
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lenjack » 24 Nov 2019 22:05

Respectfully disagree. There are no vast differences in sound quality between units. Double blind and ABX testing has proven this consistently over the last 30 plus years.

kalaur
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by kalaur » 24 Nov 2019 23:19

lbls1 wrote:
24 Nov 2019 21:52
I tend to trust the rated spec of an amp or receiver;
Don't. For example - https://www.ebay.com/itm/500W-Mini-Ampl ... 5b56e2d632
You really think that amplifier can actually provide 500W? I do not. Its rated for a 5A fuse, thats 60W at 12V.

lbls1 wrote:
24 Nov 2019 21:52
The reality is that the better your loudspeakers are, in terms of sound qualitiy and response, the less wattage you will need to achieve a good and loud sound response.
I would disagree with this as well. Perceived loudness of a speaker is dependant on speaker sensitivity, amplifier power, and distance. A higher quality speaker does not mean a more sensitive speaker. Frequency response could affect perceived loudness, but IMO this would be more of a situation if the speakers response is missing a significant portion of the audio band.

lenjack
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lenjack » 24 Nov 2019 23:42

kalaur wrote:
24 Nov 2019 23:19
lbls1 wrote:
24 Nov 2019 21:52
I tend to trust the rated spec of an amp or receiver;
Don't. For example - https://www.ebay.com/itm/500W-Mini-Ampl ... 5b56e2d632
You really think that amplifier can actually provide 500W? I do not. Its rated for a 5A fuse, thats 60W at 12V.

lbls1 wrote:
24 Nov 2019 21:52
The reality is that the better your loudspeakers are, in terms of sound qualitiy and response, the less wattage you will need to achieve a good and loud sound response.
I would disagree with this as well. Perceived loudness of a speaker is dependant on speaker sensitivity, amplifier power, and distance. A higher quality speaker does not mean a more sensitive speaker. Frequency response could affect perceived loudness, but IMO this would be more of a situation if the speakers response is missing a significant portion of the audio band.
Totally agree. As for the 500 watt car amp, referred to, that part is certainly bogus. Car ratings are totally off the wall bs. Respected audio manufacturers do not do this, Yes, I know there was a time in the 60s and 70s when they did, before the FTC clamped down on them.

lbls1
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lbls1 » 27 Nov 2019 03:04

459 and 460: I think you guys missed the essence of my posts. Despite your opinion and perceived power assumptions of a amplifier or receiver, any unit can consume and translate 100 watts of sound power. The difference is how this power is translated. Like I eluded to earlier, some amplifiers at that power range can seem like they can go on with endless volume, and some others will leave you wondering where the sound power went. Without being a technical authority or having a certified test exposing a consumer product of having misleading specifications, one will automatically have to assume that the rating is correct without evidence that contradicts it.

As far as the loudspeaker, I also stand firm with my statements. Again, many times over I've seen very good quality speakers outshine other more powerful music ensembles in performance. It does involve sensitivity, but at the same time the quality of the materials and construction of the speaker has to be at a state that it will translate the music effectively without distortion. That means the speaker cones, cabinetry, cross-over networks, insulation and everything that has to do with the speaker has to be of a certain quality that it can handle, translate and project the music at the power rating without distortion, and repeatedly for an infinite amount of time. Quality is a very key component in any music device, and especially for a stereo electronic craft and equipment.

lbls1
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lbls1 » 27 Nov 2019 03:32

Lets talk about car audio versus home audio for a minute. My last discussion involved perceived power from sound output. If you all haven't noticed, then listen to a typical car audio ensemble with a rating of 100 watts or higher, versus a typical home ensemble with a rating of 100 watts into 8 ohms typical, with at least two channels. All or most of my experiences with car audio has led me to believe that their sound output can be good to very good in quality and fidelity, but as a whole a car audio's output tends to be limited when compared to home audio's output. Many car audio's range output are measured in either 4ohms typical for aftermarket, or 2 ohms for many OEM systems. While these systems can range from 100 watts or higher, I've noticed that it takes more effort of a car's amplifier to translate the sound at a level that I would be accustomed to at home. Even at a good or optimal level in a car's sound environment, most times I am still missing or wanting the wider range in sound (deep bass, outstanding string reproduction, keen percussion) that I can achieve at home. I would not doubt that the lower ohm output may be at play, but I also feel (its my opinion) the acoustics in a space is a major factor. While you can certainly blast a car's radio to your hearing limit, the depth of sound in many ranges seem on average shorter than my music system at home.

Now here is where I will testify that a good speaker system or intermediate system can help in a car or house; The subwoofer. Case in point: My latest car, while having a very good (but not the best in my fleet) sounding system, it just could not muster enough bass or low fequency response to satisfy my needs. When I added an amplifed subwoofer, the music quality dramatically changed; Not just in low frequency and bass notes, but as a whole the depth of volume in the music and instruments improved noticeably. The additional speaker was successful in changing the performance of my car's system and making it very enjoyable. That's not all: I added a second passive subwoofer to my car's system. The change was even more dramatic. To be fair, although the volume as a whole became louder, the overall loudness of the system did not change drastically. However, the low frequency response from the added speakers I would say was a revolutionary change. Its my theory that it had to do with the speaker's construction. The size of the woofer was modest (10"), but the casement of the speaker was of a tube design I'd say at about a length 19" roughly. With one speaker the change in low frequency was noticeably good, but with the additional speaker (although passive) the response seemed to double the low frequency response to an almost jaw dropping listening response (on a couple of well mastered discs and files). This is an example of how I was able to change dramatically the performance of my car's audio system with the addition of speakers and, admittingly, amplified power.

Not everyone is a music fan or an audio fan or can tolerate loud noise in general. However, if you are a music fan and if your system isn't translating that music satisfactorily, then one should definitely experiment and look to make changes that will improve the sound of the music. You don't necessarily have to increase the wattage; Look at your speaker placement, acoustics in your space, and condition of your music pieces. Improve in areas where your system could use the extra help and/ or output. Its a great feeling to finally get your music to a level that will please your listening experience.

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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by rewfew » 27 Nov 2019 20:32

lbls1 wrote:
27 Nov 2019 03:32
However, if you are a music fan and if your system isn't translating that music satisfactorily, then one should definitely experiment and look to make changes that will improve the sound of the music.
That I can relate to. In my case years back, I took a notion that by improving the preamp to my existing amplifier would be the remedy to my dissatisfaction with the system. Sho-nuff, upon building a tube preamp from a schematic from a creative audio designer, I had a much better sounding stereo system. Wattage and amplifier still the same. That small signal device is a very critical contribution to overall sound I came to find. Since then I have made some high sensitivity speakers to go with monoblock tube amplifiers. That too made a significant improvement to the overall soundscape. Different and better in terms of nuances and ease of dynamic realism. Thinking back though through these changes, improvements. I'd have to say that the little tube preamp factors about the highest improvement in a closely contested speaker and amplifier runner up. I've not felt compelled to change anything for a decade and a half.

lbls1
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lbls1 » 27 Nov 2019 22:09

^Great testimonial!

lenjack
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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by lenjack » 27 Nov 2019 22:20

Completely off topic. Back in the 70s, many folks were attracted to the Advent 300 receiver, at 15,honest watts/channel. It did an outstanding job with efficient and moderately efficient speakers in small surroundings. Sounded much better and more powerful than expected.] Having sold a number of these, I had many satisfied customers. Also, some folks, bypassed the power amp section, and just used it as a preamp and FM tuner, as I did with Powered Advent Loudspeakers.

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Re: Is a 100 Watts a 100 Watts?

Post by Analogcd » 03 Dec 2019 15:52

Watts can be expressed in rms, peak and average, with many qualifiers. Understanding loudspeaker efficiency is helpful in determining how many watts are required for a given listening space. Remember, a simple way to disprove a bogus wattage rating is to look at the power consumption rating. Most power amplifiers of the class-A and A/B varieties rarely reach 50% efficiency. Since energy cannot be created nor destroyed, it is easy to see that 200 watts going into the power cord will never produce more than that at the loudspeaker outputs. I've seen "1000 watts" listed on power amps where the AC input rating was less than 150. It's amusing to say the least. Related reading should be RaneNote 145: Audio Specifications, http://rane.com/note145.html. Don't get too wrapped up in chasing better performance numbers. Sit back, relax and listen to the music. That's what's it all about at the end of the day.