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I've tried to do my research, I really have, reading this post for starters. It still doesn't give me the confidence to plan and pull the trigger on buying a bunch of hardware without knowing "for sure". Would this work?


Sonos Connect:AMP (110W RMS (2x55W continuous average power into 8 ohms))


Pyle PSS4 4-channel speaker selector (100Watts per Channel w/ Speaker That Have Minimum Impedance of 8 Ohms, Protection Circuitry)



4 different rooms having a volume control knob (100w, 4-16 ohm)



2x speakers in each room. (8 ohm, 80 watt nominal)


The speaker selector seems like magic to me, but I don't have a good grasp on core electrical concepts. Will my plan above work OK and not be at risk for burning out the amp or speakers?


Thanks!
 

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Short answer - yes.


Not sure what about the speaker selector appears like magic, but its "protection circuit" is an impedance-matching device, which you need in the chain.


In this case, you've also got impedance-matching in the volume controls - but folks around here have not had good results relying on that particular brand / model for impedance matching in the past (couldn't tell you if this has been "fixed"). But besides that, the control works - so if you use the Pyle swticher, with the protection circuit engaged, you're good to go...


Jeff
 
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Thanks again Jeff, super helpful as always.


My confusion stems from having read metaphors of electric current as a garden hose. Split a garden hose flow 4-ways, and the volume of water coming out wouldn't be sufficient to run 4 sprinklers unless you made the, uh, well pump
work a lot harder, or got bigger pipes I guess, to put more water through the source.


I guess I don't understand where the electrons are coming from to make 4 speakers have ample power after going through a speaker selector without making the amp push a lot more through.


But please don't feel required to teach me. I'm ok just knowing it will work, I don't do this for a living and have made it this far without understanding this stuff.



Thanks again.
 

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I would not be at all surprised if the "protection" switch simply inserted a resistor in series between the amp and the currently selected speakers.



You might consider just using IMVC (impedance matching volume controls) in each room and dispense with the switch.


The downside would be having to go to a room to turn down the volume to shutoff that room.



You are correct (for the most part) in thinking as you add speakers each speakers gets less power but another factor is the amp. Most solid state amps put out more power into a lower impedance load - up to the point they are overloaded and shutdown.



The following is an over simplification:


If you connect four 8 ohm speakers in parallel the result looks to the amp like a 2 ohm speaker.


If the amp was capable of handling the 2 ohm load it would likely be capable of putting out more power then if it were connected to a single 8 ohm speaker.


If you connect four 8 ohm speakers in series the result looks to the amp like a 32 ohm speaker.


The amp will likely handle a 32 ohm load with no problems BUT it wont be able to put out as much power as if it were connected to a single 8 ohm speaker



Regardless in either situation whatever power the amp was capable of putting out would be split between the four speakers.



The switch box is not doing anything "magic". It is simply connecting each selected speaker to the amp in some way.


If it were connecting them all in series there would be no need for a "protection" switch as each additional speaker selected would reduce the load on the amp. A minimum of 8 rising to 16, 24 or 32 ohms. So I doubt the box does this.


If it connected them in a series/parallel arrangement (two in parallel, in series with two more in parallel) then the amp would see a 4, 8, 12 or 16 ohm load and the "protection" switch might be needed to insert some resistance so the amp would not be overloaded with the 4 ohm load.


If it simply connected them in parallel then the amp would see 8, 4, 2.6 or 2 ohms and would very likely need the "protection" switch to insert some resistance so the amp would not be overloaded with the 2, 2.6 or 4 ohm load.


Any approach involving series connections would mean that a missing speaker, if selected, would silence the system as the speaker would not be there to complete the circuit. So the may have taken the simple approach and just put them all in parallel.



But it's educated guess work so who knows what they have done - it can't be very sophisticated given the low cost of the unit.



I did this in a hurry do take it all with a grain of salt - I may have done the math wrong.
 
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Also, you are correct on the hose analogy, but incorrect overall in what you are thinking.


Typically you don't run speakers at full power. A 100 watt amp doesn't push 100 watts to your speakers all the time. More typically it only pushes 10 watts or so to play at decent listening levels. If you want to double the sound coming out of the speaker, you need TEN TIMES the power to that speaker. On the other hand, if you want half the sound, you need only 1/10th the power output from the amplifier. So, a 200 watt amplifier doesn't provide twice as much volume to any room. But, splitting your 55 WPC amplifier into 4 rooms to get around 12.5 WPC delivered to the rooms doesn't mean they won't have any output. It just means you can't crank them all up and expect rock arena sound. You will get solid sound output from them without problem.


If you find, moving forward, that you want more power, you can add a amplifier. This isn't a big deal to do and can give you significantly more power, but won't really give you a lot more volume unless you go way up in power. 120 watts per channel will basically double your maximum sound output if you buy dedicated amps.


You may want to add, later on, a Sonance 260x3 amplifier to the mix which gives 6 channels of dedicated output power playing the same source. That would basically give you 60 watts per channel for each speaker. Pretty solid!


But, there is no need to start off by dong that. Instead, start with what you have listed. It's a solid setup and should work very well.


For what it's worth, you could ditch the speaker selector and amplifier and just get this unit from eBay and have greater power and a more stable system to start with:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sonance-Sonamp-260x3-125-Watt-RMS-2-Channel-Amplifier-/331174115617?pt=US_Home_Audio_Amplifiers_Preamps&hash=item4d1b83f921


There are multiple listings out there, including a few buy-it-now options:
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Sonance-Sonamp-260-X-3-Amplifier-/171275387446?pt=US_Home_Audio_Amplifiers_Preamps&hash=item27e0cf0236


Not a bad way to go IMO for your type of setup.
 
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