Need to get an amp and I have no idea what I am doing, can someone help me out? - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 6 Old 07-14-2014, 01:11 PM - Thread Starter
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Thumbs up Need to get an amp and I have no idea what I am doing, can someone help me out?

Hello everyone.

I moved into an apartment about a month ago and situated in the centre of the apartment is this old television stand with an assortment of 4 speakers on it consisting of 2 different sets.
2 of them are smaller with the AVE D20 written on them. The other 2 of them are Philips AK 141 2 Way Tuned Bass Port. All 4 of them are wired and thus require some sort of amp to run.
I have no idea of any details at all of the smaller ones however I am not interested in them. All 4 speakers work however.

The 2 much larger speakers are both 8ohm. (The Philips ones)

Now the smaller 2 of which I have no idea about at all come with a small 'Amp?' inside them. Basically they take a power output from a wall socket, convert it to 24V, run it though a chip and then provide an internal output to 1 speaker (the amp chip is embedded in the speaker), and then a typical wired output to the other speaker.

What I've done is basically chop the wires from the amp, and I have pugged the small chip into 2 larger speakers. (The Philips ones).
Now, that's probably not a good idea. However these speakers cost me nothing, whoever left them here probably assumed they don't work. However they're incredibly loud and seem to work fine.

The point is. The current set-up is somewhat obviously dangerous to both the amp chip and perhaps the speakers themselves. So I am practically refraining from using them.
However these speakers work nicely and I want to find a safe, recommended way to use them. When searching for information on Wattage, I found that it's not remotely important. What is important is resistance/impedance ohm etc.

Enter a world of engineering and other madness of which I basically understand nothing, except that these 2 Phillips speakers are 8ohm and they sound good.
I'd like to buy an inexpensive (yeah right haha?) amplifier to use with them. My questions are:

What's the difference between buying something like this:

T.A.C. Spark II Mini Amp, 2x30W output. Ohms ???? (unknown)
http://www.tori.fi/uusimaa/Pieni_ste...=18&w=1&last=1

and this:

Pioneer VXS-709RDS Output power: 400 Watt 8ohm
http://www.tori.fi/uusimaa/Stereovah....htm?ca=18&w=1

Obviously the latter is going to be far louder with the supposed power output. Plus it's got more bells and whistles.
But from reading other threads and stuff from the internet. People say that even a 1W amp is going to output something LOUD just perhaps not something GOOD.

Guys this is so confusing. I googled around, these speakers basically sell these days for nothing, literally nothing. People give them away, however they seem to be pretty good quality and very loud. Especially for my small student room. So I am pretty happy for them. The price tag on the side of them says €75. So someone put down money on them.

Do you think I should just burn the amp/speakers with what I have set up now and enjoy my 'free' set-up for as long as I can. Are these speakers even worth putting down about €70 ($100 US) for some kind of amp to make them sound their best? At the moment I'm just running some small amp chip that isn't remotely designed for these speakers. I have no idea what I am doing, except it doesn't sound that bad. Though both speakers don't seem to be running in Stereo, they seem to be in mono which is a problem for me. I'm using a 3.5mm jack to RCA into the small amp chip.

I'm sorry for rambling but I have always wanted to understand more about speakers, audio etc. My father owns a recording studio however he lives 15,000 kilometres away so I can't really ask him for any advice, and even some of the older amps that he has (if he was in reach) would probably blow these speakers.

So what do I do. Is it advisable to put down some money? What should I buy? Does wattage even matter, would some small portable 2x30W amp do well or should I get some monster older amp for the same price... I don't want to waste my money if someone who knows what they are talking about tells me these are comparably garbage speakers and whatever seems to get them to generate acceptable quality, is good enough.

Sorry if I sound like a fool, at least I know I am one haha.
Here's hoping someone can help.
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post #2 of 6 Old 07-14-2014, 01:51 PM
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The simplest option to power speakers is a stereo or audio video receiver. They have many inputs, a tuner if you want to listen to the radio, and some even have the ability to play music from various network sources.

You could look for used ones on ebay or other such sites. Or closeouts and such. For example, I just paid less than $200 USD for an RX-V375 refurbished. Not a bad deal.

I would avoid home theater in box, or other such systems.

As for power, a receiver from a trusted brand like Yamaha, Pioneer, Denon, etc. will have enough for your needs. Sounds like they are 8 ohm, so that's good as receivers seem to be designed with 8 ohm speakers ( but can work with 16 ohm or 4 ohm perhaps as well.)

"But this one goes up to 11"
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post #3 of 6 Old 07-14-2014, 03:44 PM - Thread Starter
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Thanks so much for your reply to my ridiculous thread. What do you mean by stereo or audio video receiver? Aren't these basically 'amps'?
So you're saying for my speakers that basically any old amp will do and that I shouldn't really worry about it? Or is there some sort of cheap universal thing I can buy that my speakers use. The only thing is that they are simply live open ended wire speakers. They have no closed cable plug or anything on them. (Unless there is some way I can put one on them from just plain speaker wires). So I am pretty sure I need some sort of amp that has outputs for regular speaker wires (thus not some sort of USB soundcard thing)
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post #4 of 6 Old 07-14-2014, 04:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zeptinune View Post
Thanks so much for your reply to my ridiculous thread. What do you mean by stereo or audio video receiver? Aren't these basically 'amps'?
So you're saying for my speakers that basically any old amp will do and that I shouldn't really worry about it? Or is there some sort of cheap universal thing I can buy that my speakers use. The only thing is that they are simply live open ended wire speakers. They have no closed cable plug or anything on them. (Unless there is some way I can put one on them from just plain speaker wires). So I am pretty sure I need some sort of amp that has outputs for regular speaker wires (thus not some sort of USB soundcard thing)
It seems people outside the US use different terms, perhaps

In the US, the following are common terms-
Receiver has a pre amplifier ( switching, volume and such), a power amplifier and a tuner ( radio)
Integrated amplifier has a pre amplfier and power amplifier
Amp usually means power amplifier
Audio video receiver is a receiver that handles video switching and usually has 5 or more built in amplifiers for surround sound

As stated above when I read Amp, I think power amplifier, typically lacking volume control (you could use gain/level controls on some amps, but I don't recommend that)

So while you can use any old amp, you do something with a pre amplifier for volume control if nothing else. As receivers can be had very cheaply, that's why I recommended them. They are mass produced, suit you needs and are commonly available used and new. If you can find something with suitable amplification with volume control in your price range, go for it.

"But this one goes up to 11"
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post #5 of 6 Old 07-15-2014, 02:45 AM - Thread Starter
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I understand you... I think, but would you be so kind as to give me any example model of what I should buy for use with these speakers?
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post #6 of 6 Old 07-15-2014, 06:07 AM
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Any affordable Yamaha, Denon or Pioneer receiver would work for you. As you seem to not be from the US, I don't know what to recommend as I don't know what's available for you.

"But this one goes up to 11"
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