Let’s elevate your listening experience…
You already have the perfect speakers.
And you’re thinking of adding an amplifier…
Great idea, I must say.
But what size AMP should you get?
I’m here to help you out.
Read on to discover:
- What a 500-watt AMP is.
- How to match your speakers and AMP.
- What size AMP is best for your 500-watt speakers.
- And a lot more…
What size AMP for 500-watt speakers?
You need at least a 750-watt AMP for your 500-watt speakers. In addition, the impedance of your speakers should match your AMP. And there are many concepts of power and impedance to consider.
What does 500-watt AMP mean?
A 500-watt AMP means that the amplifier has a power output of 500 watts.
But is it that simple?
What else should you know?
Well, you’ll need to learn the words commonly used for these devices.
So, let’s understand the terms used here…
#1: Power Capacity
Power capacity is the ability of a device to give and receive energy.
And it’s measured in wattage.
The higher the watts, the higher the power.
So, if you want to build a loud and powerful sound system…
Either to use in a large space or for a surround-sound setup.
You’ll need more power.
#2: Nominal Impedance
In the audio world, they use the term “impedance.”
But it’s the same thing as resistance.
So, the nominal impedance measures the resistance of a device to electricity.
And it’s represented in Ohms.
Now, devices are usually made with 4, 8, or 16 ohms of impedance.
So, what’s the difference between these numbers?
Electricity runs faster in devices with lower impedance.
And, of course, a higher number of ohms will slow down the travel of current.
That’s why when choosing an amplifier, you should opt for a low impedance.
Trust me, because it helps the signal travel faster. Thus, producing better sound quality.
#3: Sound Pressure Level
Sound Pressure Level (SPL) is the volume of sound a device can make.
It’s measured in decibels (dB).
So, if you want a louder sound…
You’ll have to increase the SPL.
Now, to do this, you need to increase the amplification power.
Keep in mind that doubling the power doesn’t double the decibels…
But, there’ll be small yet noticeable increases in the volume.
So, double or tripling your SPL will depend on the power capacity of your amplifiers.
And if you want to maximize the SPL of your speakers…
Then go for the most powerful amplifier for your 500-watt amplifier.
Imagine yourself 1 meter away from the loudspeaker.
So, sensitivity is the volume of sound you hear from that distance…
And that sound is produced from 1 watt of amplification.
For example, if the sensitivity is 50 decibels,
You’ll hear exactly 50 dB when you’re 1 meter from the speakers.
Here are the common ranges of sensitivity:
- Normal: 85 to 88 dB.
- Low: less than 85 dB.
- High: greater than 88 dB.
So, why is sensitivity important for speakers and amplifiers?
That’s because if your speakers have low sensitivity…
Then you’ll need a powerful amplifier.
This way you don’t overwork your amplifier.
Moreover, if the sensitivity is high…
You can get an amplifier with a lower power capacity.
Now, how does the sensitivity affect your listening experience?
It’s important to consider the sensitivity of your speakers…
Especially if you’ll use them in a big room.
For larger areas, you’ll need speakers with higher sensitivity.
This way, it’ll sound great despite you being far from the device.
How do I match my speakers to my AMP?
You can match your speakers and AMP by looking at their specifications.
And here’s what should you look for in the product specs:
- Power capacity.
- Nominal impedance.
Now, a paper discusses why it’s important to properly pair speakers and amplifiers. It states that doing so can prevent permanent damage to your devices.
Plus, you get better and crisper sounds.
So, now that you have the needed information from your speakers and amplifiers…
Let’s begin by…
Matching the Impedance
Matching the impedance of your speakers and amplifiers is easy.
Both must have the same value ohms.
As an example:
If your speakers have an impedance of 8 ohms…
Then you should pair it with amplifiers that also work at 8 ohms.
But, some devices may have a nominal impedance range…
Take speakers with an impedance of 4 to 8 ohms.
You can pair those with a 4-ohm AMP.
But why not just pair it with an 8-ohm amplifier instead?
Well, the speakers’ impedance can go as low as 4 ohms.
And when this happens, it won’t work well with the 8-ohm amplifier.
And as I’ve said earlier, a lower impedance can deliver the audio signal faster.
This way, your speakers and amplifiers will function better together.
Matching the Power Capacity
Now, for matching the power output.
A general rule is to get an AMP with a higher wattage than its speakers.
Why is this important?
For one, you don’t want to underpower your amplifiers.
An amplifier with lower wattage can clip the signal to your speakers.
So, what happens when the signal is clipped?
You run the risk of the following:
- Burning the voice coils.
- Damaging the tweeters.
- Permanently damaging the entire sound system.
Computing the AMP power capacity
We’ll be doing some math…
But nothing too complicated, I promise.
So, what do you need to know?
The wattage of your AMP must be 150% to 200% higher than the speakers.
So, if you have 500-watt speakers…
Then your amplifier needs a power capacity of 750 to 1000 watts.
I got these numbers by multiplying the speakers’ power output by 1.5 and 2.
By doing so, you’ll get the recommended wattage range for your amplifiers.
If you can better understand this process through visuals…
Here’s a video that can help you out:
So, let’s sum up how to match your speakers and amplifiers:
- Nominal impedance should be equal.
- The power of the amplifier must be 150% to 200% higher than the speakers.
And that’s it.
Check also: 2 Ways To Wire A 4-Channel Amp To 6 Speakers
People also ask:
Why do you need amplifiers for your speakers?
Your speakers need amplifiers to produce better sound quality. The amplifiers do this by improving the audio signal. Apart from that, they also help the signal to travel faster. Thus elevating your listening experience.
Are the speakers more important than the amplifiers?
Speakers and amplifiers are equally important. The speakers are responsible for converting the analog audio signals into sound waves. On the other hand, amplifiers enhance the audio signal. This helps the speakers perform better.