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post #1 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:16 PM - Thread Starter
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Off-loading receiver power to external amplifier

Hey all,

Currently loving my new 7.1.2 setup on my Yamaha RXA2060 but curious if it might be beneficial to get an external amp to handle a few channels. Speakers are HSU CCB8's for LCR and than SVS Prime Satellites and Elevations for surrounds/overhead. Room is 11x11x8 with seating about 7ft from each speaker location.

I was thinking of doing an Emotiva BasX 500 for the surrounds and keeping the overhead and LCR on the Yamaha. Or doing an Emotiva X series 3 channel amp for the LCR and leave the rest on the Yamaha.

How much, for an Aventage receiver, does power drop per channel with all channels driven (best guess)?

And would off-loading some of the demand to an external amp help with overall temperature of the Yamaha receiver, especially in a rack mount cabinet where ventilation is a premium?

Thanks

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post #2 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:43 PM
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Originally Posted by BigCoolJesus View Post
...curious if it might be beneficial to get an external amp to handle a few channels.
No.

Your LCR speakers are rated 94dB/1W/1M. At seven feet with 1W input power, they will produce a reference-level output of ~85dB. The surrounds and heights are 84dB/1W/1M and 87dB/1W/1M respectively. Surround and height channels are rarely mixed to the reference levels of the LCRs.

Save your money and enjoy what you have.
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post #3 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:52 PM
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Off-loading receiver power to external amplifier

For a room that size your A2060 is plenty powerful enough. I have A2050 in 25x17 room 1/4 open to staircase. It's plenty powerful also, but I recently treated myself with new Parasound A21 for the fronts which takes much heat away from the Yammy. Runs a lot cooler now.

I did have an Emotiva XPA-2 and that has enormous kick also; kind of wish I didn't trade up to the A21

Primary set-up 5.1.4; Yamaha A2050, Paired w/Parsound P5 Preamp & A21 amp
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Secondary 5.1: Denon S900W, Polks LSiM703/704C, Polk RC80i in-ceiling rears, RSL Speedwoofer 10s
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post #4 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:52 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by sam_adams View Post
No.

Your LCR speakers are rated 94dB/1W/1M. At seven feet with 1W input power, they will produce a reference-level output of ~85dB. The surrounds and heights are 84dB/1W/1M and 87dB/1W/1M respectively. Surround and height channels are rarely mixed to the reference levels of the LCRs.

Save your money and enjoy what you have.
One correction I'd note is when calculating reference level listening requirements, typically 105dB is considered reference level I believe.

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post #5 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:55 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by yanks1 View Post
For a room that size your A2060 is plenty powerful enough. I have A2050 in 25x17 room 1/4 open to staircase. It's plenty powerful also, but I recently treated myself with new Parasound A21 for the fronts which takes much heat away from the Yammy. Runs a lot cooler now.

I did have an Emotiva XPA-2 and that has enormous kick also; kind of wish I didn't trade up to the A21
So that's the other aspect I was curious about: heat. Wasn't sure how much off loading power demands helps with keeping the receiver cool.

I'm running an AC Infinity to help with cooling but if I could kill two birds with one stone by adding a little help with power while also keeping things cooler...double win.

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post #6 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:59 PM
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Yep, my Yammy runs lot cooler now & the A21 runs my Revel fronts with zero sweat; same with my former XPA-2
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post #7 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 06:59 PM
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If you're using powered subwoofers and bass management for your surround/satellite speakers properly,
the largest power draw on the AVR's internal amps (the <80Hz frequencies) are already being re-directed to an external amp.

I run my 7.4.4 Yamaha system at reference volumes and my RX-A3050 barely breaks a sweat.
My subs total a bit over 12K watts of peak power and provide the lions share of the SPL in my room.
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post #8 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 07:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by yanks1 View Post
Yep, my Yammy runs lot cooler now & the A21 runs my Revel fronts with zero sweat; same with my former XPA-2
I'll give it some more thought then. I don't anticipate any audible difference. But knowing I can have more headroom without heat issues appeals to me. Plus I always looked at dedicated amps as a future proofing step since they never really become obsolete.

Maybe if a good deal pops up used.

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post #9 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 07:05 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by PioManiac View Post
If you're using powered subwoofers and bass management for your surround/satellite speakers properly,
the largest power draw on the AVR's internal amps (the <80Hz frequencies) are already being re-directed to an external amp.

I run my 7.4.4 Yamaha system at reference volumes and my RX-A3050 barely breaks a sweat.
My subs total a bit over 12K watts of peak power and provide the lions share of the SPL in my room.
I remember your setup from a previous thread. Still jealous

But yea, bass management is set to 80Hz for fronts and 120Hz for surrounds and overheads.

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post #10 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 07:09 PM
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One correction I'd note is when calculating reference level listening requirements, typically 105dB is considered reference level I believe.
No.

The often-quoted 105dB level is for the .1 LFE channel. That's 105dB PEAK.
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post #11 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 07:13 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by sam_adams View Post
No.

The often-quoted 105dB level is for the .1 LFE channel. That's 105dB PEAK.
At reference level the average sound level of the content is around 85dB but can call for peaks of 105dB from the speakers and 115dB from the LFE channel.

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post #12 of 37 Old 09-09-2017, 08:22 PM
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You are right 115db for the sub or lfe and 105 for other speakers.

In a room as small as yours a Yamaha 2060 is plenty. That model is benched at 165x2. 112x5. 100x7. Probably 50x9. Which are all at 8 ohms with less then .1% distortion. If you go to higher distortion numbers at 4 ohms you can double the power numbers I listed.

With a quality avr like yours you are going to need a good amp to best those numbers. Here's a few examples of amps we've benched in our audio club.

8 ohms........... 4 ohms (less then .1% distortion)
172x5............. 242x5 emotiva xpa5 gen2
214x5.............. 304x5 rotel 1095
174x5.............. 235x5 adcom 7605
344x5............... 461x5 adcom 7805
191x5................ 305x5 parasound a51
247x2................. 346x2 parasound a21
379x5................. 512x5 sunfire grand signature

Probably more amps as well but that's all I could find from our test sheet. Emotiva amps do not test great and are overrated. Yes they are fine and do the job but aren't a big difference from Yamaha 2060. Amps are needed for bigger systems with more channels. Getting a decent 5ch amp to run with your avr is a must. Try to get something that is at least 150x5 then run other channels off avr. You should be able to run 7,9 or 11 channels with over 100 watts to each channel easily.

Believe it or not most of the heat comes off all the chips and electronics. Using another amp will help heat though but remember some amps run warm to hot. Parasound and rotel run warm to hot. Emotiva when pushed is a space heater.

Again though in a room your size a good 100 watts will be way more then enough for reference. You should think about the peak spl each speaker can deliver though. Your hsu get much louder then the svs. Honestly I'd be surprised if the svs can even hit 100db without sounding horrible. When building a reference theater and trying to achieve high spl you need all speakers in that room to have similar performance. Right now you have a Porsche and some vw bugs in same room.
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post #13 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 04:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Timothy1180 View Post
You are right 115db for the sub or lfe and 105 for other speakers.

In a room as small as yours a Yamaha 2060 is plenty. That model is benched at 165x2. 112x5. 100x7. Probably 50x9. Which are all at 8 ohms with less then .1% distortion. If you go to higher distortion numbers at 4 ohms you can double the power numbers I listed.

With a quality avr like yours you are going to need a good amp to best those numbers. Here's a few examples of amps we've benched in our audio club.

8 ohms........... 4 ohms (less then .1% distortion)
172x5............. 242x5 emotiva xpa5 gen2
214x5.............. 304x5 rotel 1095
174x5.............. 235x5 adcom 7605
344x5............... 461x5 adcom 7805
191x5................ 305x5 parasound a51
247x2................. 346x2 parasound a21
379x5................. 512x5 sunfire grand signature

Probably more amps as well but that's all I could find from our test sheet. Emotiva amps do not test great and are overrated. Yes they are fine and do the job but aren't a big difference from Yamaha 2060. Amps are needed for bigger systems with more channels. Getting a decent 5ch amp to run with your avr is a must. Try to get something that is at least 150x5 then run other channels off avr. You should be able to run 7,9 or 11 channels with over 100 watts to each channel easily.

Believe it or not most of the heat comes off all the chips and electronics. Using another amp will help heat though but remember some amps run warm to hot. Parasound and rotel run warm to hot. Emotiva when pushed is a space heater.

Again though in a room your size a good 100 watts will be way more then enough for reference. You should think about the peak spl each speaker can deliver though. Your hsu get much louder then the svs. Honestly I'd be surprised if the svs can even hit 100db without sounding horrible. When building a reference theater and trying to achieve high spl you need all speakers in that room to have similar performance. Right now you have a Porsche and some vw bugs in same room.
Awesome response!

Regarding the mixture of speakers: I agree but for my small room, the SVS speakers were the best route (no way I'd be able to fit a bigger bookshelf speaker). When I move into a new house next year and get a more dedicated space, I will certainly go with more "Porsche" like speakers for surrounds and overheads

So in your response you both said my 2060 is plenty of power but than also said an extra amp is a must for setups involving a lot of channels. Planning ahead, when I can afford it I want to do a pre/pro setup anyways (most likely when I get said new house) so would it make sense to start slowly investing in external amps now or still just let the Yamaha handle it for this room/setup at the moment?

Lastly, is there more benefit to off-loading the most power hungry channels like the LCR to an amp and leaving the other 6 channels on the Yamaha since they don't require as much or off loading most of the smaller channels to an amp and leaving mainly the LCR on the Yamaha? Basically should I get a higher end 3 channel amp or a decent range 5 channel amp?

Thanks

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post #14 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 08:02 AM
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Really nothing wrong with getting a good amp or amps now. I'd look at Craigslist or other used markets. Last year I bought and already sold a rotel 1095 and 1090 for $600 for the pair. They were in mint condition. Just keep your eyes out for deals.

If you find a emotiva that's fine also. It's a good starter amp that you can get use to.

You really don't need a amp right now but won't hurt getting one. When adding power amps remember to think about power in your room. Many amps need a dedicated 20a circuit.

Great amp for you in your room is a rotel rmb1075. It's rated at 140x5 but actually outperformed emotiva xpa5. Buy this smaller rotel and when you move use it for your atmos channels. Then buy another 5 ch for main channels.

Right now I have a integra r1 avr. Adcom 7805 powering fronts, center and surrounds. Adcom 7605 powering four atmos speakers or ceiling speakers. Integra powers surround backs only. My room is 25x20x24' though.

I've tried running all 11 ch off integra and it's a huge difference. I've made sure that every speaker in my room can hit 115db and my subs 125db. Even though my room peaked at 134db at 40hz. That's with 4 subs. 2 rythmik fv15hp and 2 Psa xv30fse.

Everyone has different goals in their setup and mine was to achieve a lifelike presence. I wanted to feel like I was in the movie. Watching kong the other day was an experience to say the least.
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post #15 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 08:15 AM
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A lot a great deals on used amps. I'd start building a killer setup right now.

I'd skip emotiva though
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post #16 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 08:17 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Timothy1180 View Post
A lot a great deals on used amps. I'd start building a killer setup right now.

I'd skip emotiva though
What brand would he comparable to Emotiva price wise but better quality? Outlaw?

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post #17 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 08:36 AM
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For new or used? New not much in emotiva, outlaw and monoprice money range.

Used you should be able to find very nice parasound, adcom, rotel, sunfire, anthem, carver, ati, b&k, Aragon and more for under $1000.

Last year I got a rotel 1095 and 1090 at $600 for the pair. Just start searching used market.

I really like adcom. Runs cool and a ton of power with very low distortion.
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post #18 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 01:49 PM
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Timothy; curious what don't you like about Emotiva? I had XPA-2 Gen 3 for 6 months and just traded up to A21. I did some A/B testing before selling the Emo & there was barely a difference. And either one can get to reference level without breaking a sweat w/minimal distortion..

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post #19 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 04:38 PM
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Emotiva is fine but doesn't sound much different from a higher end avr.

A21 should be a good upgrade. What pre amp are you using? Also speakers?
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post #20 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 06:30 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Timothy1180 View Post
Emotiva is fine but doesn't sound much different from a higher end avr.

A21 should be a good upgrade. What pre amp are you using? Also speakers?
What's your thoughts on Wyred 4 Sound?

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post #21 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 07:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Timothy1180 View Post
Emotiva is fine but doesn't sound much different from a higher end avr.

A21 should be a good upgrade. What pre amp are you using? Also speakers?


Parasound P5 preamp & Revel F206 fronts; M16 as rear surround; my A21 perhaps needs some break in; not sure

Primary set-up 5.1.4; Yamaha A2050, Paired w/Parsound P5 Preamp & A21 amp
Revel F206 fronts & Revel M16 rears; Outlaw X12 Sub & 4 RSL C34e in-ceilings

Secondary 5.1: Denon S900W, Polks LSiM703/704C, Polk RC80i in-ceiling rears, RSL Speedwoofer 10s
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post #22 of 37 Old 09-10-2017, 08:53 PM
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Wyred 4 sound makes some nice gear. Which one do you like?
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What's your thoughts on Wyred 4 Sound?

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I wasnt a fan of W4S amps. I had the MMC and the 7150. They both ran on the hotter side, and the 7150 would play FM through my speakers when everything was powered off.

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I wasnt a fan of W4S amps. I had the MMC and the 7150. They both ran on the hotter side, and the 7150 would play FM through my speakers when everything was powered off.
Really? I always thought the appeal of the D class amplifiers were they don't run as hot as other classes?

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Really? I always thought the appeal of the D class amplifiers were they don't run as hot as other classes?

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Yeah me too - which is why I gave wyred a try. But both Wyred's I had ran hotter than the sufire 7201 by a fair margin

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post #26 of 37 Old 09-12-2017, 10:53 AM - Thread Starter
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Is it better to get more power or more channels for an external amp?

Hey all,

Decided my next purchase when I save up the funds will be a dedicated amp to pair with my Yamaha RXA2060, mainly to help offload demands thereby reducing heat output on the Yamaha (since I'm using an enclosed rack mount unit) and because when I move in a year or so I want to do a full Pre/Pro setup so I figured why not get an amp now and slowly add. Setup is 7.1.2, with (3) Hsu CCB8's as LCR and SVS Prime satellites as surrounds and overhead.

Basically, if one is trying to offload some demand from an AVR is it better to get a beefier amp to handle a few channels or get an amp that has more channels but less power per channel? For example, if I did the Emotiva BasX 5175 I could offload 5 channels and get around 125w per channel vs. if I did an XPA-3 I could get 275w per channel for the LCR since they account for the majority of sound.

Which route, when using a combination of an AVR's internal amps and an external amp, would be best?

Thanks!
(I'm going to keep an eye out on used prices, so I'm not constrained to Emotiva. Just using them as an example.)
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post #27 of 37 Old 09-12-2017, 11:27 AM
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Sorry, there's no one right answer: "it depends".

If you have low efficiency front speakers, getting a higher power stereo amp is appropriate.

If you're just augmenting a 9 amp receiver so it'll drive 11 speakers, a (relatively) low power stereo amp is appropriate for driving the additional pair of overhead speakers.

If you have relatively inefficient speakers in a large room, a high powered multichannel amp is appropriate. By "high powered" I mean something with more than 2X the power of your receiver's amps. Remember that 2X the power provides only 3dB of increased sound level. 10X as much power is needed to provide 2X the apparent sound level. Our ears are very non-linear.

In some cases, where people have 4 Ohm (or less) speakers, an external amp is needed which is explicitly designed to handle low-impedance speakers.

If your receiver is struggling to drive your current speakers, producing an audible amount of distortion, just about anything will help, but the more powerful the better.

And, in many cases, even when additional amps don't actually provide any audible difference, just knowing that you've reduced the strain on the receiver is enough to make your listening experience that much more enjoyable.
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post #28 of 37 Old 09-12-2017, 12:02 PM
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Also bear in mind doubling the power from most any AV receiver will be accomplished by getting a dedicated amp rated about the same as the AV receiver itself. Most receivers actually can put out around half of it's listed power due to them sharing a single power supply. Some do a bit better but 60% or so is a fair estimate. My Outlaw 5000 however has been bench tested putting out around 135 Watts all channels driven. Just some food for thought.

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post #29 of 37 Old 09-12-2017, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Madmax67 View Post
Also bear in mind doubling the power from most any AV receiver will be accomplished by getting a dedicated amp rated about the same as the AV receiver itself. Most receivers actually can put out around half of it's listed power due to them sharing a single power supply. Some do a bit better but 60% or so is a fair estimate. My Outlaw 5000 however has been bench tested putting out around 135 Watts all channels driven. Just some food for thought.
Gotcha.

Yea I was told with all channels driven the Yamaha is probably realistically only putting out around 50w per channel so even the BasX route from Emotiva would double that.

Really hard to pass up their prices too.....

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post #30 of 37 Old 09-12-2017, 08:41 PM
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Gotcha.

Yea I was told with all channels driven the Yamaha is probably realistically only putting out around 50w per channel so even the BasX route from Emotiva would double that.

Really hard to pass up their prices too.....

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50 Watts per channel if your driving all channels at once (that consist of full range speakers)
with no powered subs....then maybe (but still not likely). Only the front 3 speakers get significant output signals during movie playback.
I don't know why people keep forgetting or dismissing just how much energy is off loaded from the AVR when powered subs are used.

If you are running 9 full range towers, without ANY subs in your room (with NO Bass Management)
and somehow manage to find actual movie content (not a continuous sine wave torture test)
That plays on EVERY channel simultaneously....then yes, you may be limited to 50wpc.
( NEWS FLASH! ....Bench tests don't utilize powered subs or bass management)

Like I said before, I put the amps in my powered subs to work ... over 10,000 watts for <80Hz frequencies
and as a result my AVR barely gets warm to to the touch. (it's only driving mid range drivers and 1" tweeters)

I have a pair of fairly efficient L/R towers, but even they are set to small because my Subs do <80Hz better!
...the rest of my speakers (all 9 of them) are all matched bookshelf speakers and certainly get more than loud enough.
Although they probably don't even need 50wpc, there's a Heck of a lot more headroom than I'll ever need in my 2200^3 room.

...and for those that "Think" the Yamaha is only capable 50wpc,
and getting a 100wpc amp will be twice as loud....LOL!
No, that would only be about 3dB louder ....Twice as loud would require X10 more power (Yes 500wpc)

If you really want more power in your room, get better Subs !
...and then Get more of them! Real Power comes from the lower frequencies.


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