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post #1 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 01:34 PM - Thread Starter
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I have a question. If I'm setting up a 2.0 system. With two budget speakers. Why not go with a nicer center channel instead? Probably not a good idea. Since I haven't heard about it. But why?

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post #2 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 01:45 PM
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Originally Posted by Brad Sutliff View Post

I have a question. If I'm setting up a 2.0 system. With two budget speakers. Why not go with a nicer center channel instead? Probably not a good idea. Since I haven't heard about it. But why?
2.0 systems don't have a center channel. They have a left and right.

Perhaps I'm not understanding the question. Are you talking about buying two center-channel speakers to use as L/R speakers?
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post #3 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 01:51 PM - Thread Starter
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sorry, i mean instead of 2 channel with budget bookshelf speakers, why not just have one better center channel speaker?

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post #4 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:04 PM
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Depends on what you're after. Do you want a speaker for your TV or for music?

The center won't give you any stereo if your into music, it'll sound nice, but I don't think that's what you'd be after.

Spinning the rear tire at 150mph while at 3/4 lean angle will put wrinkles in your seat
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post #5 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:07 PM - Thread Starter
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Gaming/movies and music probably 50/50 between those

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post #6 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:10 PM
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Since you'll be doing half music, I'd get the best pair of bookies I could find and fiddle with running a phantom center until you can add one.

Spinning the rear tire at 150mph while at 3/4 lean angle will put wrinkles in your seat
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post #7 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:17 PM - Thread Starter
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I figured. Thanks. And would 20 wpc be enough for the Micca mb42x's or monitor 30's? For nearfield

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post #8 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:19 PM
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The M30's should be good, I don't know about the other.

Spinning the rear tire at 150mph while at 3/4 lean angle will put wrinkles in your seat
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post #9 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 02:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Ok thanks Geoff

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post #10 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 04:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Sutliff View Post

I figured. Thanks. And would 20 wpc be enough for the Micca mb42x's or monitor 30's? For nearfield
Look up the speaker's sensitivity. (mb42x says it's 85db). 20w would be +13db. That assumes 3ft (nearfield)

So the mb42x would be able to give you 98db @3ft @20w. It's up to you if that's enough or not.
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post #11 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 04:32 PM - Thread Starter
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i dont know that equation. but 98 db at 3 feet seems pretty good...how quickly will that drop off though? lets say from 6ft what would it be?

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post #12 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 04:44 PM
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The loudness is halved when the distance is doubled, so you lose 6 dB per doubling. 98 dB at 3' turns into 92 dB at 6'. But you don't want to drive your speakers to their limits continuously. The last few dB of their maximum output levels is going to have a lot of distortion, and not only that it also risks destroying the speaker drivers.
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post #13 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 04:49 PM - Thread Starter
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yeah i know not to push them too hard. what would a speaker with 89db sensitivity be at?

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post #14 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Sutliff View Post

i dont know that equation. but 98 db at 3 feet seems pretty good...how quickly will that drop off though? lets say from 6ft what would it be?

98dB is enough to do permanent damage to your hearing (given enough time). One thing a lot of people in this hobby don't realize is just how little power it takes to drive most speakers to extremely loud levels. Buying a Kill-A-Watt and hooking it up to your amp is a real eye opener. I actually sold off all my really high-wattage gear once I realized I only needed a handful of watts to get to volume levels so loud that I'd never want to listen at.
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post #15 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:18 PM - Thread Starter
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98dB is enough to do permanent damage to your hearing (given enough time). One thing a lot of people in this hobby don't realize is just how little power it takes to drive most speakers to extremely loud levels. Buying a Kill-A-Watt and hooking it up to your amp is a real eye opener. I actually sold off all my really high-wattage gear once I realized I only needed a handful of watts to get to volume levels so loud that I'd never want to listen at.

yeah i know. im looking at some budget amps. that say they do 20wpc but im not sure if its only at 4ohm. and they dont seem to be super reliable either.

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post #16 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Sutliff View Post

i dont know that equation. but 98 db at 3 feet seems pretty good...how quickly will that drop off though? lets say from 6ft what would it be?
As mentioned: the rule-of-thumb is -6db per doubling; but it can be less than that depending on the room and reflective surfaces.

[qoute]yeah i know not to push them too hard. what would a speaker with 89db sensitivity be at[/quote] 4db louder.
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yeah i know. im looking at some budget amps. that say they do 20wpc but im not sure if its only at 4ohm. and they dont seem to be super reliable either.
How budget?

I use an old AVR form a pawn shop. $30 will get you 90W no problem
or something like http://www.parts-express.com/pe/showdetl.cfm?partnumber=300-383
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post #17 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:25 PM - Thread Starter
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ok thanks for the technical help jerry. and ive been looking at that amp. its right in my budget. how reliable is it? I just dont want to buy my brother this and then have it die on him within a year

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post #18 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:28 PM
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ok thanks for the technical help jerry. and ive been looking at that amp. its right in my budget. how reliable is it? I just dont want to buy my brother this and then have it die on him within a year

I used that Dayton amp to power my nearfield Hsus at my desk. It worked fine for a few months and then one day just stopped working. I switched to this (http://www.amazon.com/A1-2x14W-Class-D-Digital-Amplifier/dp/B004FSXON8/ref=sr_1_24?ie=UTF8&qid=1382833636&sr=8-24&keywords=fiio) about a year ago and it has been very reliable.
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post #19 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:31 PM - Thread Starter
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I own a fiio headphone amp. works great. how loud does it play those hsus? not at max but halfway?

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post #20 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:43 PM - Thread Starter
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i just ordered the Fiio A1 from amazon. thanks for the link to it.

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post #21 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 05:50 PM
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I own a fiio headphone amp. works great. how loud does it play those hsus? not at max but halfway?

Mine is generally pegged a bit above 9 o'clock. That's for nearfield use though (gaming, maybe a bit of video, etc). I just turned it up to the 12 o'clock position to test it and, to power speakers within 3 feet of your ears, I can't imagine anyone finding that to be a sane volume level. It will play very loud with reasonably efficient speakers.
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post #22 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 06:13 PM
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sorry, i mean instead of 2 channel with budget bookshelf speakers, why not just have one better center channel speaker?

You want to have your center channel timbre matched with the L&R speakers, which pretty much forces them to be of similar quality levels. If fact some of us use the same make and model speaker in all 3 locations.

LCR timbre matching is very helpful if you want good sound quality for your investment.
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post #23 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 06:41 PM
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Bought 2. Both work about 10 months later. Sounds like you already got sorted out though. smile.gif
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post #24 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 07:20 PM
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Bought 2. Both work about 10 months later. Sounds like you already got sorted out though. smile.gif

I probably should have pointed out that I live in an extremely dry climate and end up shooting mini-lightning bolts into things several times a day. I think the Dayton amp might have just taken one too many of them. The FiiO amp seems to be a lot more resilient. I almost wonder if it's due to the enormous (and plastic) volume dial. I very rarely get shocked when touching the FiiO.
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post #25 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 07:38 PM
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Originally Posted by dmsdms View Post

98dB is enough to do permanent damage to your hearing (given enough time). One thing a lot of people in this hobby don't realize is just how little power it takes to drive most speakers to extremely loud levels. Buying a Kill-A-Watt and hooking it up to your amp is a real eye opener. I actually sold off all my really high-wattage gear once I realized I only needed a handful of watts to get to volume levels so loud that I'd never want to listen at.

Same here, I had a Class A/B Pioneer receiver, rated at 60 watts per channel, and probably never even used more than 20 watts: So I sold it and got a class A (Linear distortion) 25 watt Technics receiver which can drive my Utah's to painfully loud levels. One thing that I love about Class A, is that even when there being pushed hard they actually run cooler and have the same amount of distortion.

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post #26 of 67 Old 10-26-2013, 11:49 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the help guys. I appreciate it. Since were on the topic of watt usage. If I have a 90wpc receiver and I run speakers around 90db sensitivity near reference levels. How much of that available power am I actually using? Just so I know how overkill it might be

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post #27 of 67 Old 10-27-2013, 12:19 AM
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Thanks for all the help guys. I appreciate it. Since were on the topic of watt usage. If I have a 90wpc receiver and I run speakers around 90db sensitivity near reference levels. How much of that available power am I actually using? Just so I know how overkill it might be

Reference level for movies (0 on an AVR) is 85dB with 20dB of headroom. To hit the 85dB spec, you are likely looking at single digit watts depending on your listening distance. To hit 105dB at like 8ft, you are looking at just about 90W. However, reference level is very, very loud. At -3dB on your AVR, you are probably around 45W, -6dB around 23W, etc. Now, this is all theorycraft though. It's theorycraft based on real science but, there are enough variables involved that it's more of a very rough (and probably pessimistic) guide rather than "at reference you are definitely using X watts".

Note: I wasn't trying to persuade you or anyone else to go for low power devices. In my house, I rarely listen to music above -20dB and movies above -15dB. At those levels I'm using a laughably small amount of power with just about any speaker. To listen at reference level, you do indeed need a fair amount of power.
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post #28 of 67 Old 10-27-2013, 01:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brad Sutliff View Post

Thanks for all the help guys. I appreciate it. Since were on the topic of watt usage. If I have a 90wpc receiver and I run speakers around 90db sensitivity near reference levels. How much of that available power am I actually using? Just so I know how overkill it might be

Short answer; 5 watts at the most, if that, at 3-4 ft. You'll probably use a little more for movies because they are usually more dynamic than music.

Long answer; It depends how far away you sit from your system. I'll give you an example: I run a PA system at a church, the average attendance of the church is about 85 people, which is about 35 feet away from the main speakers. We have a Radio shack MPA-200 100 watt amplifier for the auditorium, we have two 8 ohm speakers wired in parallel which gives us a 4 ohm load, that gets the mains 100 watts of power. My point of saying all this is that at 35 feet away 100 watts is actually painful tongue.gif Now keep in mind the speakers we are using that have a sensitivity over 90 dB so that helps out.

For my system I've determined that a 25 watt amplifier is enough power based on the fact that my speakers are only 4 and 1/2 feet away from me. One thing I can't believe nobody mentioned is you really don't want to run your amplifier at it's rated power all the time; the reason being that a typical class A/B amp runs it's hottest near it's rated power which will reduce the life of the capacitors. That 100 watt rat shack amp runs very hot at 100 watts so I actually start compressing at around -3 dB to keep it from toasting. I would buy a 100 watt receiver for a 10 ft listening distance that way your amplifier isn't toasting when your using it: Keep in mind this is at reference levels, if you listen at lets say -15 dB 100 watts is overkill. My recommendation is if you have a class A/B amp double the wattage you think you'll need, for class A get a receiver get a receiver with maybe 10 watt headroom because class A runs cooler the more watts you're using.

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post #29 of 67 Old 10-27-2013, 07:32 AM - Thread Starter
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Wow interesting. That's really low. I'm at about 8 feet. So probably right around 10watts. Crazy low ammount. I always thought playing around reference levels I was near max on my receiver. Good to know!

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post #30 of 67 Old 10-27-2013, 01:32 PM
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Wow interesting. That's really low. I'm at about 8 feet. So probably right around 10watts. Crazy low ammount. I always thought playing around reference levels I was near max on my receiver. Good to know!

Is your AVR set at 0 dB? If it is your using a lot more than 10 watts.

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