What amps are you using for whole home audio? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-18-2019, 07:30 AM - Thread Starter
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What amps are you using for whole home audio?

Just curious what kind of amps people are using for whole home audio? I currently have all of my speakers wired into an impedance matching device with 2 channels coming out. Controlled with a Sonos connect. I used an old pioneer receiver to power it all. I think it is rate @ 115w into 2 channels. With 8 zones, each zone is barely seeing any power.

I'm thinking of throwing in a Behringer nx3000. 440w x 2 @ 8ohms. That should give me some more oomph out my speakers. Each zone has 100w volume knobs, so I should be just fine.

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post #2 of 9 Old 06-18-2019, 05:10 PM
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Dayton from parts express has a 12 x 40w for 550. Monoprice has a 12 x 25w for 600. HTD has a 12 x 40w for 700. Minidsp has a nice 16 x 50w for 1100.

But I'd suggest taking a look at the new HTD amp 12 x 40 for 800. The price premium is because it has a second "priority" input for every channel that becomes the active input when a signal is detected there. Very useful for a secondary source that you want to always have interrupt priority, like a doorbell, alarm system, or more interestingly an Alexa type device.
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post #3 of 9 Old 06-22-2019, 03:23 AM
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Does it have to be done with a multizone amplifier? Or, can it be done with a two channel amplifier? I am in a similar situation to the OP. I am powering 6 rooms with just a receiver and a speaker selector with volume control and impedance protection. I really like the use of the speaker selector as I can shut off any room at any time. That HTD amp looks great but I don't see the ability to turn off zones/rooms (am I missing it?). Can I instead choose to keep my existing equipment and just purchase a two channel amp from HTD (or something similar)? I was actually considering allowing my receiver to power three interior room and buy a two channel amp to add between the receiver and my outdoor speakers. Can this be done?
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-22-2019, 04:58 PM
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Multi channel amplifiers would be best. Most multi channel amps have a bus or global input, so you could use just one source.

Turning the volume control all the off disconnects the line, effectively shutting the room off.

We use Clare Controls 1640 amplifiers, btw.

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post #5 of 9 Old 06-24-2019, 06:59 AM
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Does multichannel amp equal multizone amp? I see amplifiers advertised as multizone. I see a bunch of lower cost amps that seem designed for this purpose but I also see that a number of them get bad reviews for durability. I like the look of the multizone amps as some allow two BUS input sources that can be assigned between any of the zones, and then even a zone specific input source. HTD seems to have one that fits the bill. How is the quality there? Does anyone have any recommendations as far as quality and durability?
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post #6 of 9 Old 06-26-2019, 03:15 PM
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I use a stack of five Rotel RMB-1048 amps to power 20ish zones of stereo audio. I have a few zones reserved for future use.




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post #7 of 9 Old 06-26-2019, 05:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallcane View Post
Does multichannel amp equal multizone amp? I see amplifiers advertised as multizone. I see a bunch of lower cost amps that seem designed for this purpose but I also see that a number of them get bad reviews for durability. I like the look of the multizone amps as some allow two BUS input sources that can be assigned between any of the zones, and then even a zone specific input source. HTD seems to have one that fits the bill. How is the quality there? Does anyone have any recommendations as far as quality and durability?
Different manufacturers make multi channel amplifiers in different configurations. Some have higher power, some have more channels, etc. You'll have to choose what amp you want based on your needs.

Cheaper amps tend to be cheaper overall and might fail sooner than others, but this is a generalization.

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post #8 of 9 Old 06-27-2019, 07:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tallcane View Post
Does multichannel amp equal multizone amp? I see amplifiers advertised as multizone. I see a bunch of lower cost amps that seem designed for this purpose but I also see that a number of them get bad reviews for durability. I like the look of the multizone amps as some allow two BUS input sources that can be assigned between any of the zones, and then even a zone specific input source. HTD seems to have one that fits the bill. How is the quality there? Does anyone have any recommendations as far as quality and durability?
An amplifier is an amplifier is an amplifier.

If you look at the picture of the back of my Rotel, it has 8 individual RCA inputs. So, it is an 8-channel amplifier. Your A/V receiver that you are using to feed your speaker selector is part of a system, but only has two channels it is feeding out, then you are splitting it.

While I say a amp is an amp is an amp, there are very different things which can feed that amplifier, and there are integrated multi-source, multi-zone amplifiers as well.

In my setup, I have a 16 source x 8 zone pre-amplifier ahead of my amps (3 of them). So, I can pick from up to 16 sources to up to 24 zones independently. Any source to any zone at any time at any volume as I choose.

Some integrated systems combine several sources with multiple zones of amplification, with built in volume control. So, you hook up your sources and then you can use a phone, or keypads in room, or similar, to select the source and adjust volume in that room. Those devices are similar to mine in that the rooms can independently be turned on/off and select different sources. So, different rooms can listen to different things.

Look at the back of the HTD MCA-66 unit here:
https://www.htd.com/MCA-66-Audio-Controller-Amplifier

You can see that it has 6 stereo inputs for 6 sources of your choosing. Then it has 6 amplified stereo outputs (12 channels) which feed speaker zones throughout the home. As long as 6 sources and 6 zones is enough, it's a great solution. You have to up the price tag quite a bit to get 12 zones of audio from them.

A simple single amplifier and a single quality audio source which can play anything back is the most typical solution for people. All zones play the same audio, and rooms can have independent volume control and be turned on/off, but they all are using that same source and playing the same thing so you don't get much flexibility there. As well, you have to go to the volume control for each room to adjust things, which isn't necessarily convenient. But, for the money, it's a very easy way of doing things and may satisfy an end goal of just getting music out to a bunch of rooms.

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post #9 of 9 Old 07-08-2019, 08:07 AM
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can you link two Dayton audio amps together and share sources across the two amps? I plan to either use Sonos or something with streaming capabilities and can be controlled via an app. I will not be putting in keypads as well.

Thanks
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