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  1. #1

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    Default will my R50's benefit from an amplifier.

    I was looking into getting an amplifier for my HT setup and was looking for advice on it. I have a Onkyo 701 reciever which is rated at 100WPC. I have a pair of R50's for my mains and I am unsure of there wattage range. Im guessing 10-150. I was looking into a Blue ice amplifier amp

    will I see any gain in using this amp or should i just save my money. I am really looking into taking some strain off my reciever which should make my other speakers sound a little better.

    these are the specs on the amp:
    Maximum power:
    - 5000w peak
    - 1000w @ 2 ohms
    - 600w @ 4 ohms
    - 350w @ 8 ohms

    Specifications:
    - Inputs: Balanced XLR, ¼" plug & RCA
    - Outputs: Speakon, ¼" & Banana plugs
    - Separate Input & Output Turbo Fan for maximum cooling at high volume
    - 2 Digital Output Meters
    - 2 LED Output Meters
    - 1 Numerical LED Input Sensitivity Meters
    - Chameleon LED Power Status Light changes from red to blue to indicate ready

    Dimensions (W x D x H): 19" x 14" x 7"

    Weight: 48 lbs (105 kg)

  2. #2

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    From the looks of the website, I believe they sell pro gear directed for DJ's and the such. These amplifiers usually deliver a lot for the money in terms of wattage, but they are usually not as refined as actual home audio equipment.

    If you are looking for an improvement to your Onkyo, and are willing to spend around $500 for an amplifier, then look at Rotel, Parasound, NAD, Outlaw(maybe a pair of monoblocks). Also, you might look used(Audiogon, here, or ebay). Look for something around 200 watts/channel so you will be prepared for future upgrades.

    After saying all of that, I'm not sure how much of an actual improvement you will hear on a pair of R50's. I'm not saying that you won't hear an improvement, I just don't know how much. I've not seen many people drive those speakers with much more than a receiver.

    If you get an amp, let us know what you think of it.
    Tschüss
    Zach

  3. #3

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    Something to remember...

    The polk website lists the max. recommended power handling of the R50s at 150W. Not sure if you want to go exceeding that or not.

  4. #4

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    ya but I always thought that those numbers where very conseritive and that you could always go a little above those numbers and not do any damage. With that said, do you think a 200WPC RMS amp would stil be over kill?

  5. #5

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    That sort of thing I am not too familiar with. 200W, maybe, I would guess. But you were mentioning an amp with 350W @ 8 ohms. Thats another ballpark.

    Best leave that answer to someone else here.

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    Remeber also that at typical listening levels you are only running at about 1W with peaks maybe going into the 20's (That's a sustained ~90 dB with peaks ~105dB peaks AKA decently loud). If you are really pushing 150+W into your speaker, you have bigger problems than blown speakers like you are deaf or are bleeding from your ears.

    It doesn't matter if you have a 100kW amp, you will only use the power it requires for a given sound level, no more, no less.

    It is much better to be able to overdrive your speakers than clip the amp
    Last edited by jdhdiggs; 03-04-2005 at 02:07 PM.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

  7. #7

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    so your saying that even at my loud listens levels that I am only pushing about 20-50watts into my speakers. I say loud as in loud and listenable. How about those times I "crank it up" when fox does there nascar races? or what about those times when I crank it up during the beach scene in Saving Ryans Private?

  8. #8

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    Reasonable listening levels usually are going to be less than 100 db's. Any more than this and you will suffer hearing damage at rapid rate.

    jdhdiggs was right. It is better to have too much power available than to have too little. If you are using 100 watts now, and you turn your amplifier up, then the amplifier may start to clip. This is one of the main reasons speakers become "blown". Having too much power allows you to reach the same listening level without having the clipping.

    200 watts/channel should not be too much for the R50's, even though they might be rated at 150.

    A rule of thumb would be to never turn your amplifier up past the 12:00 position(or halfway point if you use digital numbers).

    Do you have a Radio Shack SPL meter?
    Tschüss
    Zach

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    Let me put it this way, I have ONLY seen/heard one occurance of a peak going over 100W (Excluding subs) in a home environment and that was when Tour tried to blow up Russman's SDA's and the amp peaked at 200W/channel. This "sound" drowned out what was going on in a room that was three walls, two rooms, and 30' away.

    When I "Rock out", my peaks will only be in the 105dB range (or about 20W on my system)

    A LOUD movie theater averages on 75dB on dialog to give you a comparable volume across computer screens.

    If you have an amp that can truly generate 100W, you should never clip it without doing something amazingly stupid like cranking U-571 without a sub and a fullrange signal going to the speakers.
    There is no genuine justice in any scheme of feeding and coddling the loafer whose only ponderable energies are devoted wholly to reproduction. Nine-tenths of the rights he bellows for are really privileges and he does nothing to deserve them. We not only acquired a vast population of morons, we have inculcated all morons, old or young, with the doctrine that the decent and industrious people of the country are bound to support them for all time.-Menkin

  10. #10

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    Originally posted by okiepolkie

    A rule of thumb would be to never turn your amplifier up past the 12:00 position(or halfway point if you use digital numbers).

    Do you have a Radio Shack SPL meter?
    so if my onkyo recievers max volume number is say 90, then I should never push it past 45? if that is true then I will tell you that it is past that about half the time the reiever is on. I gotta turn the volume up in DD mode to watch a movie. When its in All channel stereo, its a different story, I dont have to have it turned up that high. In DD while watching the nascar race, I crank it up around 60 for a minute when the cars are screaming by. You telling my that I am damaging my speakers by doing this?

  11. #11

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    Remember that it is a rule of thumb. If your amplifier is clipping at the 60 mark, then it shouldn't be turned up that high. A separate(high quality) amplifer is better able to reach those same volumes without clipping.
    Tschüss
    Zach

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    My LSi7's are rated at 150watts/channel and I called Polk to ask if there would be any problem running my Cinepro amp with them.

    They told it is very rare to blow a speaker with to much clean power. (as opposed to blowing a speaker because you didn't have the power you thought you did)

    If you hear any distortion in the speaker, just turn it down a little. My LSi's play VERY loud before they start showing any signs of distress. (Louder than I would demo them at - let alone - listen to them at)

    The other thing to keep in mind is that is continuous wattage, not peak. With most movies and alot of music, you will not hit continuous levels that high. (rock music you might because the noise floor is VERY high for rock)

    basically I wouldn't worry about it,

    Michael
    Mains.............Polk LSi15 (Cherry)
    Center............Polk LSiC (Crossover upgraded)
    Surrounds.......Polk LSi7 (Gloss Black - wood sides removed and crossovers upgraded)
    Subwoofers.....SVS 25-31 CS+ and PC+ (both 20hz tune)
    Pre\Pro...........NAD T163 (Modded with LM4562 opamps)
    Amplifier.........Cinepro 3k6 (6-channel, 500wpc@4ohms)

  13. #13

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    McLoki, how much is to much clean power? What are the specs on that amp you where runing your LSi7's with? I think my R50's have a rating of 150max watts. If i pushed them with the amp I mentioned in my first post(2 channel at 350w @ 8 ohms per channel) would it be ok to run them at a normal HT gurus listening level. (basically not letting them scream for mercy). I really want to see if they can shine a little bit more and I want to take some stress off my reciever. if the amp mentioned is too much then maybe I will look into some crown amps.

  14. #14
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    Originally posted by jdhdiggs
    Let me put it this way, I have ONLY seen/heard one occurance of a peak going over 100W (Excluding subs) in a home environment and that was when Tour tried to blow up Russman's SDA's and the amp peaked at 200W/channel. This "sound" drowned out what was going on in a room that was three walls, two rooms, and 30' away.
    Gawd almighty... Is this to be my legacy? :D

    BTW, the music in question was the title track of Flim and the BB's "Tricycle". It's a SDA demo CD with some of the sharpest attacks/ transients you'll find in a recording. Transients are very short-term peaks in music's natural, dynamic range. I first heard “Tricycle” at a dealer demo’ing SDA SRS's for me years before I landed my pair.

    Anyway... I wasn't trying to blow anything up at Russ’ and nothing did blow up. I was doing nothing I have not done repeatedly over the years with my own systems. Not only my current rig, but my old one, 45 W Yamaha speakers on a 375 wpc continuous/ 600 wpc peak, Carver M-1.5t. For the record I have neither blown a speaker nor clipped an amp since I retired my original, 50 wpc, Heathkit AA-15 integrated.

    “Tricycle” is near typical of a good chunk of the Classical repertoire out there. A 60+ dB range is not unusual for full symphony works with crescendo transients reaching 120 dB. The earlier post’s example where only 20 W were needed for 105 dB, becomes 640 W requirement to hit 120!!! Right in the old Carver’s wheelhouse… Rock by comparison is relatively tame from a dynamics standpoint, clocking in around 20 dB or so, yet it is more dangerous as we tend to listen at a greater average level.

    As McLoki stated, speaker power ratings are maximum continuous ratings based upon the drivers' voice coils' ability to dissipate heat. Any quality speaker will handle transients that are multiples of its "max rating" so long as the signal is, as mentioned above, clean, i.e., unclipped. For decades Julian Hersh (RIP) included tone burst tests in his speaker reviews. It was not unusual for a 60 W speaker to take bursts in the 300 to 500 range. When he reviewed the SRS's (rated at 1000 W), he ran out of amp at around 1800 W.

    BZ28,
    It’s pretty simple. When it comes to amps… buy as much quality power as you can afford, but personally I’d pass on the pro amp you opened this thread considering.

    On music your ears will protect your speakers. As for HT… whole ‘nother story. I’d keep LFE away from your R50’s, regardless of amp power.

    Have you considered a good sub? There are a couple under $500 that a very good, and just might free up enough of your AVR’s power to make your 50’s sound fresh… Just a thought…

    jdhd,
    You should have been in Troy’s Carver Cave when Dave and I cranked up Stravinsky’s “Firebird”. Don’t think we peaked much over 400 wpc on the crescendos…
    More later,
    Tour...
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  15. #15

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    The Legend lives on :)

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  16. #16

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    Originally posted by BOTTLEDZ28
    McLoki, how much is to much clean power? What are the specs on that amp you where runing your LSi7's with? I think my R50's have a rating of 150max watts. If i pushed them with the amp I mentioned in my first post(2 channel at 350w @ 8 ohms per channel) would it be ok to run them at a normal HT gurus listening level. (basically not letting them scream for mercy).
    My LSi7's are also rated at 150 watts/channel.

    I am running a subwoofer as well and have the speakers set to small. (crossover at 80hz) I feel this gives me a little more wiggle room since I should'nt have to worry about bottoming the woofer, just dissipating the heat from the voice coils.

    My LSi's are 4 ohm speakers and my amp is rated at 500wpc with 1100 watt peaks. I am sure I could hurt my speakers with my amp, but I am equally sure that I would be deaf when it happened.

    I have heard the little LSi's play really loud and they sounded great. When I turn things up though, I always listen for any loss of clarity from the speakers. If I even think something doesn't sound right, I turn it down. Even given that, they sound awesome and go really loud for no larger than they are.

    The good thing is, once you get a really good amp, you never have to worry about what speaker your run, they just all sound really good.

    Michael
    Mains.............Polk LSi15 (Cherry)
    Center............Polk LSiC (Crossover upgraded)
    Surrounds.......Polk LSi7 (Gloss Black - wood sides removed and crossovers upgraded)
    Subwoofers.....SVS 25-31 CS+ and PC+ (both 20hz tune)
    Pre\Pro...........NAD T163 (Modded with LM4562 opamps)
    Amplifier.........Cinepro 3k6 (6-channel, 500wpc@4ohms)

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