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  1. #1

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    Question Question: New amp or what for more volume???


    Hello folks, I am a veteran polk enthusiast for over14 years and now enjoy a pair of SDA 2b's with a PSB Powered Subwoofer.

    My question is:

    Most times I cannot achieve the clean loudness I want without my NAD 3400 100w Integrated amp clipping at volume level 5, so I am looking for the best solution!

    What would be the best scenario: buy a bigger amp or buy some bigger polks?

    I have inquired about a amp/pre-amp configuration and have come up with a new NAD C160 / C270 combination that would provide 120w. I don't think it will be enough. (This would be $900.)

    Bi-amping seems to be the new fad now, but I am unsure of the wiring to my Subwoofer will work with that scenario. (Using a line level interconnect from the "pre-out" into the Sub, which sends back the signal to "main in" without the lower frequency.

    Thanks is advance for any expert help you can
    Tony G
    Glloucester, Va
    provide!!!:p :

  2. #2

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    More clean power. If you are clipping your amp, thats the solution, imo.

    Step up to 200-250 w/continuous. Carver, Nad, Adcom would be good places to start looking. 100 to 120, I doubt you would even notice.

    Cheers,
    Russ
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.

  3. #3

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    To get a really noticeable difference in power, double it.

    BDT
    I plan for the future. - F1Nut

  4. #4

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    Consider this: let's say your Polks are 89dB efficient [1w of input power produces 89dB of sound at 1m in front of the speaker, ignoring reflections from the room].

    To get 92dB, you'll need 2 watts.

    95dB -> 4 W
    98dB -> 8 W
    101dB -> 16 W

    you get the idea: watts double for every 3dB increase in volume - doubling the volume is about 10dB.

    Remember, this doesn't take into distance further from the speaker - you might need 5 Watts to get that 89dB if you sit 4 Meters from the speakers. The power curve then looks like:

    92dB -> 10W
    95dB ->20W
    98dB -> 40W
    101dB ->80W

    Also figure that non-mass-market-pop CD's can have peaks 15-20dB above "average" levels. That means you need some pretty hefty reserves - unless, of course, you listen to commercially produced crap which has 2dB peaks.

    This is why I think 600W a channel is not excessive for 89dB efficient speakers.

    Now, interestingly, in theory, adding another pair of speakers will increase the sensitivity by about 6dB - so your 89dB efficient speakers become 95dB efficient, and that's a huge gain.

    However, the price you pay is phasing problems, hookup issues, space issues, etc. And it typically isn't a good tradeoff.

    I'm also really curious about your setup: it's the bass frequencies which gobble the power - 80Hz and lower. If you're truly filtering that out at line level, I'm pretty amazed that you are clipping a 100W amp that easily. How loud do you listen?

    Just some thoughts. Hope it helps.
    As we celebrate mediocrity all the boys upstairs want to see
    How much you’ll pay for what you used to get for free

  5. #5

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    To RLW:
    Thanks fro such a thorough answer- that really put it in perspective.
    I must say that your question is easy to answer- I must listen to the music TOO LOUD! No, really- I am a classic rock fan, and I do like it VERY LOUD (but clear).
    I think the opinion that I have had given about getting bigger speakers in not that good. Those SDA 2b's will be able to handle to loudness better of I give them what they want- more clean watts. Now I am bummed out about having to let go my Nad 3400 in lieu of a very expensive Amp/pre-amp.
    BTW- I cannot find which NAD 200 watt amp model to look at.. any suggestions?
    Also- who would recommend Rotel over NAD??? They have a nice 200 watter for about $1k.
    Thanks again very much for all the help!
    Tony G
    Tony G - Gloucester, Va

    Denon 1650AR CD
    Phase Technology Power 12 Sub
    Polk SDA 1
    NAD 3400 Int Amp (100w)
    NAD 6340 Cassette
    Kenwood KT-31B Tuner

  6. #6

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    Heh heh heh...find an old Bedini to drive those SDAs. The best I ever heard a pair of SRSs was through a Bedini. The clincher? The store I used to listen to them at let them go for $500. If I'd only known...

    Wally

  7. #7

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    If your NAD integrated amp has pre outs then just use that as a preamp until you can get a new one. Spend the money on a new amp. You could also look at used amps such as Bryston, they carry a 20 year transferable warranty. So you would be covered for a long time!
    Sony KDL-40V2500 HDTV, Rotel RSX-1067 Receiver, Sony BDP-S550 Blu-ray, Slim Devices Squeezebox, Polk RTi6, CSi3 & R15, DIY sub with Atlas 15

  8. #8

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    To wlrandall:
    Found a bendini on ebay for $450... what are the specs on that?
    Tony G - Gloucester, Va

    Denon 1650AR CD
    Phase Technology Power 12 Sub
    Polk SDA 1
    NAD 3400 Int Amp (100w)
    NAD 6340 Cassette
    Kenwood KT-31B Tuner

  9. #9

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    My first SDA demo, was 2b's on a 25 watt Bedini Class A.

    Music to my ears.
    Check your lips at the door woman. Shake your hips like battleships. Yeah, all the white girls trip when I sing at Sunday service.

  10. #10

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    Tony, it depends on the model.

  11. #11

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    Now, how is that? I just digested all the computations from rlw's post, and you tell me it can be done for 1/4th the watts instead of double.
    Tony G - Gloucester, Va

    Denon 1650AR CD
    Phase Technology Power 12 Sub
    Polk SDA 1
    NAD 3400 Int Amp (100w)
    NAD 6340 Cassette
    Kenwood KT-31B Tuner

  12. #12

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    Hi TONYGVISINET,

    I had a pair of SDA-2's driven by a Carver M1.5t rated at 350watts a channel peaked at 600 watts a channel with dynamic headroom to 700 watts one channel for musically significant time periods. AKA short burst. I saw one on Audiogon.com not too long ago it will do the trick I guarantee.
    JmasterJ Polk to the Death

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