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Receiver / Speaker Pairing

by penti01 / December 27, 2011 9:16 PM PST

If a receiver that's rated 110w per channel (8 ohms) is paired with a speaker that has a recommended amp power of 20-275w per channel, will it just sound like a smaller speaker that's has a recommended amp power of 20-150w per channel since the receiver can only out 110w per channel?

ie. Will a Onkyo NR709 (110w) paired with a Polk TSi500 (20-275w) sound the same as a Polk TSi300 (20-150w)?

Thanks in advance. An explanation on how receivers and speakers work is a greatly appreciated bonus. Happy

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All Answers

Best Answer chosen by penti01

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In a nutshell
by Pepe7 / December 27, 2011 10:39 PM PST

Look at the impedance rating too, which is arguably more important than the power ratings. 6 ohm speakers can place a lot more demands on an amplifier, which is why it's important to match the impedance of receiver w/ speakers. In general, this means 8 ohm speakers w/ 8 ohm amp.
Since the 110W rating is per channel, you can normally use each speakers power handling rating as a comparable figure. A speaker rated at150W or 275W can handle output from a receiver putting out 110W per channel. Just don't run any system at maximum volume levels. This means keep the teens/kids away from it ;).
Between the above speakers, the 500s will have a lot more bass response than the more entry level 300s IME.

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Forgot to mention
by penti01 / December 27, 2011 11:44 PM PST
In reply to: In a nutshell

Forgot to mention that the rated 110w was at 8ohms, which is also the impedance of the speaker..
Considering what you mentioned, that my amp can only go 110w and the speaker is able to go as high as 275w, does this mean that I should only play the speakers at a maximum volume of 40% (110 / 275) or would only be using 40% of its 'potential'? Also, other than bass response, the 500s won't make much difference off the 300s because of the limitation of the amp? I'm planning on setting up a 10in sub with 2 pairs of TSi200s for surround, so the bass response needed could also come from the sub..
Thanks in advance!

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Not a one-for-one comparison
by Pepe7 / December 28, 2011 3:03 PM PST
In reply to: Forgot to mention

There's probably some sort of curve involved, so it wouldn't be a straight percentage/ratio as you've suggested. Running the system for lengthy periods at high volume levels is always done with some amount of caution.

Where the electrical energy turns into mechanical energy (the SPEAKERS) is where the rubber hits the road. In this sense, it's where you will hear the improvement right away.

Don't forget about adding a center channel for dialogue ;).

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by penti01 / December 28, 2011 5:35 PM PST

That's good to know.. So there's no problem with my set-up then.. Already had an in-wall entertainment console made for the speakers, so it'll ruin the wall if I suddenly change them now..

Also, I've never really paired an amp with speakers, so this is a noob question, but the speakers get power from the amp, right? So no additional AC power outlet needed for each speaker? Is this the same for subs?


P.S. Yeah, gonna get the Polk CS20 center speaker, forgot to mention.. Silly

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