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Please help! - Question about speaker power

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Please help! - Question about speaker power

Old 04-25-00, 09:05 PM
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I am thinking about a new Kenwood VR-3090 receiver that sends out 100 watts to all 5 channels. I have an Infinity CC-1 center channel, but it is only rated for 10-80 watts. Will this kill my speaker? Will it work?

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Old 04-25-00, 09:36 PM
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Sure it will work, but it depends for how long. That's pushing way to many watts in to that speaker, and you risk seriously damaging it, especially at high volumes.

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Old 04-25-00, 11:44 PM
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Thing is though, how do you listen to movies or music with your system? If you have a large room and need to crank it because of that or simply like it VERY loud then yeah you might be continuously putting a little too much power into that speaker. But if you never do this or only listen at moderately loud levels, you have next to nothing to worry about.

I can't really vouch for this, but my cousin is an Infinity follower and he says that he has put "ungodly" amounts of power into both a CC1 and CC2 and has not ruined one; he's a fan of ear-bleeding volume levels so I imagine he was using a pretty powerful amp. Guess what I'm trying to say is the 80W rating for the CC1 may be conservative....

Old 04-26-00, 12:04 AM
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Watt ratings are not anywhere near as important as you may think. As for a company like Kenwood I would doubt their watt rating is correct(honest) to start with

You can tell by the sound coming out of the speaker if you are damaging it. If it doesn't sound stressed then you are fine. I have very high current Rotel amps driving B&W speakers, the amps are rated at 200W continuous and the speakers at 125w. I can hit ear bleeding volumes without any distress sound in the speaker and I have been doing it for years.
Old 04-26-00, 12:30 AM
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Wonderful! Thanks for the help....

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Old 04-26-00, 04:56 PM
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dave, that rating is for pink noise of a long period of time. Than add to this that the amp rating is always stretched to rech the rating. All of this means no problem. A good example is I have a 250 watt Adcom and I have used it for cheap to expensive stuff. Think of the speaker a a dynamic load. I never actually see full power in the real world.
Old 04-26-00, 05:51 PM
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Another thing to keep in mind is that most listeners do the majority of their listening at 5-10 watts of power. The difference in actual loudness between 80 and 100 watts is less than 1 db. Using a receiver or amp with an lower power rating will actually damage your speakers much more than with too much power; those extra watts are actually headroom, not overkill. Take care.
Old 04-28-00, 01:53 PM
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quote:<HR>Using a receiver or amp with an lower power rating will actually damage your speakers much more than with too much power; those extra watts are actually headroom, not overkill. Take care.<HR>


I agree with you except that this is only true if you drive the lower powered amp into clipping. Just thought I should mention this because a lot of people have the misconception that low power is more dangerous to speakers than high power and this isn't completely true.

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Old 04-28-00, 04:54 PM
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I've got an old Pioneer reciever with watt meters and I would say that 90% of your normal listening sound volume (still VERY loud) comes from the FIRST watt. Of course that depends a lot on your speakers.

If your speakers are efficient, then you get more sound dB quicker. Which is why salesmen always try to sell people on Paradigm mini-monitors over NHT SuperOnes (not to say which is better!).

OK just did a test with my mains (12" woofer, 6" mids, horn tweeter) and at ONE watt peaks, I had peaks of SPL at 102 dB (note 100 dB is a rivit gun!). This reading was taken at about 1 foot with a Radioshack meter.

I almost couldn't take the loudness just to get the reading! I would not worry about your speaker unless you plan on cranking your amp to full scale for extended periods. I don't think you could take the sound anyway.

Note that SPL is an exponential (logarithmic?) function, so that there is a point of diminishing returns. Once you get past the 1-10 watt level, you really need 100's (or 1,000's!) of watts to really get noticeably louder.

That's the catch 22. If your amp is weak and you don't get the SPL, you are tempted to drive the amp harder and then you might get the clipping mentioned. Or if you have a really big amp (compared to the speaker rating), then you might want to REALLY crank it, thereby possibly blowing the speakers.

I think you are just about in the right range. I tend to like having an amp a little bit larger than the speaker rating.

[This message has been edited by Taco (edited April 28, 2000).]
Old 04-29-00, 03:56 PM
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You won't drive an amp to clipping with that Infinity speaker. Unless it is quite weak.
Wattage does have very little meaning as
far as power goes. The industry continues
to brag about their watts per channel but
it means next to nothing. The current behind
the watts is what matters. I had a 200w per
channel Denon amp trying to drive B&w 802
fronts and it had all it could stand. The
speaks are rated at 80 watts minimum with
unlimitted maximum. I switched to a 125 watt
Belles and they came alive. Alot of the main
stream companies have been advertising "high
current" amps. A definite improvement from
their past products. Point being, after
rambling about power, listen to the center
and it is distorting, turn it down or replace
it. The center has a tremendous amount of
information and could be the most important
speaker. Maybe a better one could be in order
anyway.
Old 05-02-00, 02:40 AM
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I can echo the above statements and say with ceartainty that the kenwood is not going to damage your center channel based on wattage ratings. In your case the kenwood probably has an actual continuous (20 - 20K, into 8 ohms) rating of much lower than 100 Watts. But, I would caution you to pay attention to the clarity of the center when you have it at a higher than average volume level. If for some reason it appears to be losing it's clean sound, you may be pushing the limits of the amplifier. And like the above posters said, if you overwork an amplifier it WILL damage your speakers. Sometimes right away, but most the time it is doing so slowly.

Other than that I bet you'll get GREAT SOUND from the combination. I would also say that if you have the time you should read some reviews of the receiver before you buy it. Some people at audioreview said they got this one from wholesaleconnection.com for $625-$650...

Good Luck

Robert Jason

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