Originally Posted by JackcaJ
Let's say I have a 5.1 receiver (powered sub) with 500 total watts and therefore 100 watts per channel.
If I only use two speakers (front right and left), does that mean that 250 watts will now be allocated per channel? Or still 100 watts per channel?
Thanks in advance,
The short answer is a good one. To eleborate, it depends on the receiver.
The FTC rules specify that all associated channels of a receiver be driven when testing. But all associated channels is not defined. So it could be two, for example.
When I have looked at bench tests, it's normal for receiver's to have a two channel power rating which matches their specs. An underrated one might put out a bit more.
So...100 watts is probably about right. Maybe a bit more.
Let's say though, you had a Harmon Kardon that was rated all channels driven. It might do better into two channels than I suggest above (this is speculation on my part). It's still limited by the supply voltage provided to the amplifier. That sets the upper limit, even though the power supply considered by itself might suggest more power.
Also note that transistors have very real limits. Limiter circuits built into receivers will only allow so much current to flow. So that's another potential limit.