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Pulling my hair out... I have two pairs of 8-ohm speakers in parallel. Each pair runs through a Niles impedance magnifying volume control; with each control set at 2X, at the receiver, I'm seeing only about 3 ohms of DC resistance in the circuit. This low resistance jives with the fact that at higher input levels from the receiver, I am hearing distortion and clipping.


I traced back through the speaker circuit. The leads from the speakers are reporting about 6.5 ohms. That checks out. I then left a speaker pair attached to the Niles unit and looked at the output resistance from the unit. With the control set to 1X, the output resistance is 3 ohms! If I set both controls to 8X, the value rises to nearly 6 ohms (i.e. it only doubles).


So the Niles controls, which I thought are supposed to magnify impedance, are not seeming to do their job, explaining the low final resistance I'm seeing in the circuit, just before the receiver. (and at 1X, the control is _demagnifying_ the resistance!).


I did check and the controls are wired correctly and are not reversed (speaker wires into the 'speaker' terminal block).


Am I out to lunch, confused, or missing something, or could these units be defective? Given that both behave this way, it's hard to see this as a single bad apple, and there are no web reports of bad units. But it looks to me that I am just implementing a plain-vanilla application that is exactly what these controls are designed for.


I'd be grateful for any suggestions or lessons...
 
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