Finding the right amplifiers is crucial to getting the absolute most out of your sound system. Whether for home or car, great movies, music and games simply aren't the same if the sound doesn't do them justice. While there are a great variety of amps on the market, there are a few things everyone should be considering first and foremost.
Firstly, it’s a good idea to start off with deciding how many amps you need. If you have a range of different speakers in your set-up, an amp for each one or a multi-channel amplifier would be a wise choice for maximum performance. Once you've settled on that, let’s move on to choosing individual amplifiers.
The rule of thumb here is that more power means more volume. Take care, though, as using too much power on your speakers can do them damage. For this reason, we need to match the power output of your amplifier to your speakers. To do this, read the manufacturer information and find an amplifier with an RMS output that matches your speakers’ RMS input as closely as possible.
Total Harmonic Distortion
Put simply, Total Harmonic Distortion or THD, is what most would refer to as sound quality. It’s the amount of difference between what’s coming out of your playback device and what’s coming out of your speakers. Usually given in percentages, a lower percentage means better sound quality. While professional amplifiers can boast a THD of 0.05% or lower, for most consumers a THD level of up to 1% will do the job well.
Especially an issue if you’re buying an amplifier for the sound system in your car, an amp isn’t much use if it’s too big to fit anywhere! While there are lots of amazingly compact amplifiers on the market, you just may end up finding a model perfect for your setup only to find out you don’t have space for it. You should also make sure the amp has enough space for airflow around it, as they can quickly overheat in enclosed spaces. Apart from these few major factors, there are lots of smaller decisions you need to make in order to find the amplifier that’s best for you.
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