4 ohms or 8 ohms

amplifiers, receivers and loudspeakers
nniemiec
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Re: 4 ohms or 8 ohms

Post by nniemiec » 15 Mar 2019 20:08

exactly. Not sure what to make of it, will running them at 4 ohms make any real diff vs. 16 ? i guess i'll find out, but was most worried about frying gear. Big up to JDjohn for setting me straight! I hope I like these guys. Epi had some interesting designs for sure.

JoeE SP9
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Re: 4 ohms or 8 ohms

Post by JoeE SP9 » 16 Mar 2019 14:05

DagnyT wrote:
14 Mar 2019 15:49
So with the switch to the left I'm getting 4 ohms when only using A or B but if I run both together it's 8 ohms per speaker. So it's not like I have a choice, correct?

I believe you are a little confused about amplifier output specs. Below is a link to a primer that should help you to better understand them.

https://www.practical-home-theater-guid ... fiers.html

Those SS amps/receivers that have different switch settings for 4 and 8 Ohm speakers generally have that switch because the amp/receiver has a weak power supply and can't produce enough current when driving a 4 Ohm load. The switch when engaged introduces a current limiter to the circuit. For some the switch lowers the power supply's output voltage. Either approach is to protect the power supply from burning out.

Higher quality gear generally does not have the same limitations and therefore has no such switch. This does not apply to most tube amps because they have output transformers which almost always have separate taps for 4 and 8 Ohm speakers. Some even have 2 Ohm taps.

Generally the closer an amplifiers 4 Ohm rating is to twice the 8 Ohm rating the better the device. Some continue to "double down" into 2 Ohms. This is even better. Any amp that has a 2 Ohm continuous rating can safely drive just about any speaker without self destructing.

nniemiec
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Re: 4 ohms or 8 ohms

Post by nniemiec » 19 Mar 2019 21:48

Thanks JoeE SP9 - that helps. I'm left wondering what the point of the 16 ohm (in series) vs. 4 ohm (in parallel) switch on the speakers (Epicure 202) accomplishes? I was told by someone else offline that switch on the speakers serves no purpose to protect the amp. Regardless, they definitely sound better when switched to 4 ohms.

Sunwire
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Re: 4 ohms or 8 ohms

Post by Sunwire » 20 Mar 2019 00:03

16 ohms will be easier for most amps since the speaker will draw less current and the amp won't heat up as much.
So, the switch may be there for use by people with amps that can't safely provide much current.
If your amp CAN supply the current, the 4 ohm position may be preferable, sound-wise.