There are 22 watt per channel tube amps and there are 22 watt per channel tube amps.
Generally (although not necessarily), the more expensive the tube amp, the more likely it is to have high-quality output transformers and hefty power supplies that will make its wattage rating less important (i.e., the amp will be more powerful than its wattage rating would otherwise suggest).
To respond to your question, if your Klipsch speakers do not drop below 6 ohms or so, and are anywhere near 102 db/watt sensitive, any decent 22 watt tube amp will make them go very loud. If you want a 22 watt tube amp that will drive less efficient speakers, however, then you have to be really careful about what you buy and, generally speaking, this means pulling out your wallet (top-shelf output transformers are very costly).
If your speakers are true 102db sensitive. You could drive them to insane levels with a few watts. 22 wpc is more than enough! I use a 6 wpc amplifier on 96db at 8 Ohm sensitive speakers. Sitting 9 feet away from the speakers with a SPL meter and the volume dial set at 9 O'clock on the amplifier. I get dynamic swings from 62 to 86 db on some recordings. You have some monster amplifiers that can't do that without choking a bit.Some folks make a huge deal out of mega watts.On a highly sensitive speaker..only the first few watts really matter.
I drive my LaScala's with 8 watt SET amps, and have also used 3.5 watt SET amps and a 1 watt head-amp. Either of the first two will drive the 104db Scala's to ear-bleeding volumes in a very large space with little effort. The latter will still give a very rewarding volume level. 22watts is way more than enough. As Raquel indicates this alone does not speak to the quality of the sound. I agree regarding the quality of the transformers - that will make a significant difference. I don't know that the wallet needs to be emptied though as there are plenty of great choices out there well within the range of the amp you pointed out.
Let's do this deciBelicly.
Twenty-two Watts driving a sensitivity of 102dB is the same as 44 watts driving 99 dB...is the same as 88 Watts driving 96dB...is the same as 176 Watts driving 93dB...is the same as 352 watts driving average-sensitivity 90dB speakers. 352 Watts is probably some 100 - 200 Watts MORE than most of us use on 90dB-sensitibity speakers.
I'd say 22 Watts will be 'plenty 'nough'.
I'm using 3.5W SET amps on 104dB speakers without any preamp, so you will definitely have enough juice. Unless of course you are living in a chateau, in which case I need to know how much to rent a room?
More is better, so long as quality isn't compromised.
To put things in perspective, guitar players with a "full stack" use speakers that are equal to or more efficient than what you have with more surface area to boot ( 8 x 12 inch drivers ). While they traditionally overdrive their amps on purpose to achieve a specific sound, they are doing so with at least 50 watts and more typically 100 watt heads. If you want to be able to reproduce "concert level" rock & roll and keep it clean without introducing additional distortion from your own system into the equation, you'll need more than 22 wpc.
As a side note, distortion is abrasive sounding and adds apparent volume to what we hear. That's because our ears respond to it differently AND the spectral content of distorted music is different from that of undistorted music. As such, it is possible for a smaller amp driven into constant distortion ( but not completely saturated ) to sound "louder" than a larger amp that is playing "clean". In many cases, "rockers" like the added distortion of the smaller amp driven into clipping, yet they desire the impact and control of a bigger amp. The fact that your KLF's have multiple large woofers may have your tube amp straining to deliver enough current and keep the woofers EMF under control at the same time.
If you are listening to classical music, jazz, female vocals, etc... that has a much lower average to peak ratio, you might find that 22 wpc is more than sufficient. That's because these types of music don't put the steady state drain on an amp that highly compressed "rock" music does. They only require a watt or less for most of the reproduction with occassional peaks up to several watts. With rock music at high volumes, you may end up pulling several watts all the time, which not only loads down the tubes, but also causes them to fail sooner.
As a side note, one can't base power requirements for a speaker on a given spl rating without knowing the radiation characteristics of the speaker itself. Due to variances in how speakers project their sound, two speakers that have identical ratings at 1 meter might be up to 6 dB's different at the seated listening position. That means that one could be up to four times louder / quieter than the other with the same amount of power applied.
In this respect, line arrays tend to work very well at "projecting" the sound and maintaining spl's into the distance. Even with a "line array" type installation with a dozen mid-woofers per side, Albert Porter has found that running 750 "tube watts" is beneficial to his speakers. He was running tubed amps rated for dozens upon dozens if not a hundred+ wpc and found that the increased headroom really helped with the impact, control and clarity of the system. Others that tell you that such power is not necessary have either never heard such a system or the system was less than ideally configured / matched. Measuring the dynamic demands placed upon an amplifier under heavy load would more than convince those that could understand what is going on technically that "more TRULY is better". That is, so long as the quality doesn't suffer : ) Sean
Sean ..I understand where your coming from.But we're not talking about line array speakers with 50 lbs of crossover parts.
There is a such thing as overkill, I believe it applies to everything out there.
If he were running big Theils ..that suck the life out of an amplifier.Then I would suggest a monster amp.Why hook a 300 wpc amplifier up to a highly efficient speaker? This makes no sense to me.I imagine most audiophiles listen at around 75 dB on average. That's unless their trying to cut this terrific hobby short with severe hearing loss. More may be better in some cases but more can sometimes sound like garbage on highly sensitive speakers regardless of the technical specs. That's why most owners pair these types of speakers up with a low wattage amplifier. I have a hard time believing all these folks are hallucinating about the differences they hear using low wattage verses high wattage amplifiers on these types of speakers.The people that have actually heard this would understand this better.
Because your speakers are so sensitive (102dB) you have the luxury of using a relatively low powered amp. The question is not whether the power is enough, but rather whether the loudness is enough to satisfy you. Within its capabilities the 22 watt amp will probably sound fine, and higher power will gain you nothing.
Other speakers, like my MG1.6 are a different story. The only way I know to get the 600 watts that they seem to like without breaking the bank is a digital power amp. But if I had your speakers, using my amps would be idiotic.
use 300B single ended. Even 10W would be plenty of power.
Gmood1: Sensitivity is sensitivity is sensitivity, regardless of the type of design. It doesn't matter if you're using ten drivers with 50 parts in the crossover or two drivers with a cap and a coil, driving them to the same level at a given distance with the same amount of power demonstrates equal power transfer characteristics.
What i'm getting at is that high efficiency speakers benefit from the increased headroom and control that a higher level of power brings with it. I've run my modified Heresy's and modified La Scala's with 30 tube wpc and with multiple hundreds of watts. I know that Bob Bundus has run his Belle's with varying power levels too. The last time i talked to Bob, he had found the same thing that i did. That is, a greater amount of "clean" power was always better. Don't knock it until you've tried it.
If you doubt this, ask Albert about it. Even though he was running 100+ wpc with his line arrays, moving up to the mega power levels took him to a new level of authority and reproduction. If it didn't, don't you think that Albert would have switched back to something that was doing a better job for him? "True" power corrupts and once you've had a real taste of it, it's hard to go back to something less.
As a side note, once i get situated in my new location, i'll be building a tubed amp to drive the La Scala's. The circuit that i have in mind operates at 55 wpc with astonishingly low distortion levels and no global feedback. The amp would probably be rated at appr 75 - 80 wpc if it was a commercial product and treated like most other tubed amps, but i'm always conservative when it comes to this type of thing. In all actuality, the amp actually peaks out at about 115 wpc, allowing plenty of dynamic headroom with this type of speaker.
As such, you don't need a "million watts" for a high efficiency speaker, you just need something that remains linear under a heavy load. Most tube amps aren't very linear at or anywhere near their rated power levels, so that's why i suggested more power. Once most tube amps start to distort, the distortion levels climb at a very rapid rate. It is this lack of dynamic headroom and increased level of distortion that should have one leaving themselves quite a bit of "fudge factor" when choosing a tubed amp. That is, unless you don't mind high levels of "harmonic richening" and increased tube wear. Those that are listening to chamber music and / or never "rock out" can probably disregard those cautions. Sean
I would like to know what kind of bass response one would get with a high sensitivity speaker and a low watt amp.
Sean I've tried 100 wpc on my speakers. Sorry no dice! It makes the music sound forced on my speakers. I had a friend to tell me this before I tried it.But no, I had to have more power..I had to have all this headroom.The amplifier stayed in my system roughly 5 minutes ..no kidding.I learned a valuable lesson..I think I will stick with low wattage.It works for me in my room.I can't speculate how it will work for others. Different strokes for different folks. Oh yeah ..I don't listen to chamber music!
Despite the high sensitivity, big Klipsch speakers NEED high power if you want to control the woofer's voice coil.
Yes, you can play them loudly with a few watts, but you are not going to get the bass that a big amp will provide. Personally, I would like to see a plot of the speaker to see how loud the low frequencies are playing with that 102 dB with 1 watt at 1 KHz. Of course, we could just measure The Doctor's next time we jam.
Gmood1: I too have tried many amps and had less than satisfactory results, not only with high efficiency speakers, but also with low efficiency speakers. Probably the worst combo that i had with a high efficiency speaker was a Classe' 70 with my La Scala's. This amp is rated at 75 wpc @ 8 / 150 wpc @ 4 / 300 wpc @ 2 and supposedly has 3 dB's of dynamic headroom. With the La Scala's nominal impedance of 4 ohms, this meant that i should have appr 150 watts of steady state power with 300 watts of momentary reserve ( 3 dB headroom ). On these ( and some other speakers ), this amp sounded phenomenally lean and piercing. On my Father's 94 dB 4 ohm Legacy's, it sounded much the same. My Father found it so offensive that he offered "to hold the door for me while i carry it out to the trash".
When i hooked it up to my Ohm F's, which range between 1.5 and 4 ohms over most of the range, the amp did quite well. In fact, it sounded better and drove these speakers more effectively than a Bryston 4B, which is rated at 250 @ 8 and 400 @ 4. Don't ask me to explain this, because i can't. I really wish i had the time to study and learn what causes specific loading characteristics to occur, but i don't.
The only thing that comes to mind is that the Classe' doesn't like driving the increased level of reactance that a crossover network brings with it. This is why measuring power output into a benign load like a non-reactive dummy load is somewhat misleading. Obviously, speakers aren't dummy loads and most generate quite a bit of reflected EMF and odd phase angles over at least a part of their frequency range. It is this type of anomaly that requires the use of a higher powered amp, if you want the amp to stay in control of the situation rather than the other way around.
David: In most cases, the bass will lack impact and definition. Bass typically becomes rounder with less pitch accuracy and increased overhang. Most interpret this as a "fuller, warmer" sound rather than a distortion. How much of this takes place will depend on the design of the amp and speaker combo.
Having said that, it should be noted that many higher powered SS amps suffer the same fate. Whereas the lower powered tubed amp begins to choke due to lack of both instantaneous and long-term current, many SS amps fall prey to the same thing. That's because most common designs make use of an output inductor ( coil ) that all the power of the amp must pass through. Due to the fact that inductors slow down the delivery of power and the guage of this inductor is typically pretty small, instantaneous power may not be nearly as quick and / or have the quantity that it initially needs. Having said that, most tube amps are in worse shape than in this regards than a "mediocre" SS amp because the tubed amps also load into a much higher value output inductor ( transformer ) AND the tubes themselves are current limited due to their very design.
SS amps with larger gauge inductors or no inductors will tend to produce more responsive bass, but can run into problems elsewhere. As such, the designer / engineer picks his personal poison and it is up to the end user to find what they think works best for them.
Trelja: I agree with your comments, especially about your comments about loading characteristics vs frequency. Other than that, who is "the Doctor"? Sean
Sean ..this sounds like roughly what I heard. I was ready to take those amplifiers and throw them in the trash.
Luckly I cooled of after a brief rampage around the house! I decided to hook them up to a friends Eminent Techs. I think they are 83 dB sensitive. It drove these speakers like champions and sounded great to boot.I sat there scratching my head trying to figure out why they didn't work on my speakers.
I wonder if it has anything to do with the dampening factor. I think the dampening factor on them is 3 or 4 thousand. This is just a stab in the dark though.
With most SS amps, the higher the damping factor, the more negative feedback that is used. The more negative feedback that is used, the more sterile and harsh the sound becomes. Using a very revealing ( crossover-less or minimal crossover designed ) speaker that is of very high sensitivity would only highlight the poor design and sonics of such an amp. Getting the amp up higher into the power operating band via using lower sensitivity speakers will help reduces some of the harshness and non-linearities at very low levels, making them a more suitable combo. Sean
Thanks Sean- Even I understood your explanation :~)
Sean, The Doctor is Audiogoner mechans (Dr. Steve Mechanic). He is one of my closest friends, audio or otherwise, and the proud owner of a pair of Klipsch La Scalas. Yes, he's an actual doctor, which is why I call him The Doctor. Into fast cars, good food, and wine. Does a good Don Vito Corleone impression as well...
I met someone that had K-Horns(105db) driven by four Carver 4.0t's @400watts into 8ohms!
Was it loud enough, Tabl10s?
I used to run an amp that was rated at 350 wpc @ 4 ohms into one of my old pairs of La Scala's. I drove it into clipping on more than a few occassions. Yeah, it was pretty loud... : ) Sean
Sean, some of my best audio moments were in times like you just described!!!
This is the doctor writing. Sure you can get 100db out of your La Scalas from a watt but as Joe (Trelja)- my very good buddy, also a conissuer(sp? they don't teach that one in Med school) lover of fine fast cars and..... well no he is a devoted husband.... put it- from where? Its almost all squawker which carries the bulk of the sound by design. The crossover frequencies in the AA type are set that way. So you can make your ears bleed before you hear any real musical bass with low wattage. I find a muscular solid state amp works best. That being said, I generally only need about 50 watts from an old Mac amp, but I am looking to buy the 105 version, it rocks my jelly roll soul. If you think that's nuts I play them in paralell with vintage JBLs C36s (with the 030 drivers) with about 100db sensitivity. That being said I have heard my very pair driven by EL84s with very pretty sound but at relatively low levels and auditioned them with 2A3 bottleheads playing Grover Washington's Mr. Magic at reasonably loud levels, the guy admitted to blowing a tweeter diaphragm at one point, because "it wasn't clean power". When I want my cochlea to take it easy I use other equipment. I couldn't be more emphatic, the 15 inch woofers in these speakers simply will not move correctly without the power and I will add you can and will cause almost any low watt tube amp to clip, even in the midrange, if you listen to loud music. Joe and I like it at 90-100 db, sorry if its not audiophile but we also insist that its clean and all there. As a side note Joe doesn't really like the La Scalas, power or not and makes me play my JMs when I hang out with him.
Here's a website that may shed some light.How Much Power Do I Really Need ?
Gmood1...I think that the power levels are a bit low.
With my MG1.6, 86dB sensitivity, with SPL at 96dB (brief average measured with RS meter) I actually measured 38 vrms (brief average) across these 4 ohm speakers, which is 361 watts. The table would suggest something like 10 watts.
Edartford do you know for sure the Magnepans are 86db sensitive ? I know the Maggies can eat up some watts.
Also how far away are you with 96db SPLs?.. Just curious.
I would think of the chart as a guide but it isn't concrete..basically like anything else in this hobby :-)
Gmood1...The Maggies are spec'd at 86 dB for 2.83 volts, which is 2 watts into 4 ohms. The table in your link is for 1 watt, so it is not quite so different from my measurements. One characteristic of Maggies, or any planar speaker, is that SPL falls off very slowly with distance. My measurements were at a typical listening position...about 12 feet.
Did you see my posting titled "Maggies...Measured Amp Power Requirements". (Sorry I don't know how to link this).
For a 102db sensitive loudspeakers, 22W is like using a 500W amplifier with a normal efficiency loudspeaker. It is enormous power. In fact, you can drive your loudspeakers with just 1W of power to very satisfying levels.
That table is based on spl's as measured at 1 meter from what i can tell. As such, one would have to factor in measurably more power to obtain that same listening level at a greater seated distance. On top of that, this chart does not take into account dynamic compression of the speaker system. In effect, that type of a chart is not worth much in the real world. The fact that i've easily topped 900+ watts peak into my Ohm F's ( appr 82 dB's 1W / 1M ) and it still wasn't very loud is proof of that. This is why i've always said that one is much better off running the most efficient speaker that they can, if they can find something that they like that fits that criteria.
As a side note, El's comments about the 2.83 volts @ 1 meter is right on the money. This type of spec can be VERY misleading. I just brought this up over at AA's speaker asylum
last week in greater detail. Obviously, there's a lot of resistance to publishing more accurate data and how one interprets that data. As many of you know, this has been a sore-spot with me and many of the "audiophile publications" in the past. This doesn't apppear to be any different this time either. Sean
Sean...For people who use ss power amps, citing SPL at a voltage level (2.83 volts) makes sense because the amp will automaticly deliver double power (or near to that) with a 4 ohm speaker. A spec citing SPL at a power level (1 watt) makes sense for people who use tube amps, where a lower impedance load does not enable higher power.
In case you hadn't noticed, the world today is mostly ss, and not surprisingly most speakers are being spec'd at a voltage. I suppose that tube guys will fight on, but it's a losing battle. Not worth dying for, Sean :-)
El: The quantity of amps ( SS or tubed ) that TRULY produce twice as much power at 4 ohms as compared to what they do at 8 ohms can probably be counted on your two hands. At some power level, the amps will not "double down" as impedance is halved. As such, your last response is null and void based on incorrect data. In effect, you made the same mistake as those that i was arguing with over there. You assumed too much about SS amps being built to theoretically perfect standards ( voltage source ), which most are far from. Sean
Sean...The Amp specs that I see do "come near to" doubling between 8 and 4 ohms, as I said above. Most are not "far from" as you suggest. Fall on your sword if you must. But don't be so rash about assuming how high I can count on two hands. The number is 35. And if I take my shoes off I can count to 1295.
You're looking at more "fake spec's", not REAL power output. Power should be measured at clipping, not some arbitrarily derived figure that the manufacturer chose to use in order to make the product look more impressive in terms of distortion and "doubling down". It is for this reason that most people think that spec's mean very little. Sean
Sean..."Fake specs" would be ones that are untrue, and based on your prior comments I don't think you mean this, although of course it could happen. I think that what you mean is that the spec at 8 ohms will be LOWERED so that it is just twice the spec at 4 ohms, so that current delivery looks better. It seems to me that giving the 8 ohm people a bit more than what is claimed is a good thing. Is the glass half full, or half empty?
As to measuring power at clipping...this is an interesting approach, but not very well related to music. We do not listen to clipped waveforms. Even sine waves, which are used for power measurement are more demanding for current than music waveforms, which spend less time at maximum and minimum voltages. The old IHF power measurement, so distained by audiophiles, which only required the power to be delivered in short bursts, actually makes pretty good sense for an audio amplifier.
Now, I've seen everything...
Eldartford is saying we listen to music, not sine or square waves??? Wow, I've told him this a few times, but today he's saying it. It's truly a momentous day on Audiogon! Hallelujah!!!
In a more serious vein, I reiterate my assertion that I would like to see a sweep of a speaker's output across the frequency spectrum. Further, since we're talking about measurements, a lot of manufacturers would have some 'splaining to do. Most notably, those who couple an 88 dB/2.83V woofer, with a 91 dB/2.83V tweeter, use a bunch of crossover components, then claim to have a 92 dB/W loudspeaker.
Trelja...You have totally misrepresented my views on the role of test signals and measurements. I wonder why you feel it necessary to do this. Whenever possible I use music as a test signal, even if the results are obtained by electronic measurements rather than by listening.
It would seem strange to find the sensitivity of a speaker system to be higher than the driver spec. But, not impossible. Driver specs are measured using a simple box enclosure, and a finished system design may include horn loading which increases efficiency.
Eldartford, my example is a simple one. I know of more than one manufacturer who does this, and the results are born out quickly when their speakers get reviewed by folks who not only listen, but also measure.
Although one can find examples of speakers which are most sensitive in a box (Lowthers, horns), for the common dynamic speaker, you cannot exceed the sensitivity of the most sensitive driver.
While measurements are certainly important, in my opinion, if the end result, MUSIC, isn't right, what's the point??? I was just having a laugh at you finally mentioning the word "music" in a post, and how it eclipsed test tones.
And, see if you can lighten up a bit. Personally, I think you'll have a lot more fun and friends around here if you do. It's a humorous site if you let it be.
Trelja...Check my posts. I often mention music, and sometimes (too often) crack a joke. It is true that I am interested in things technical, but I treat that as a separate hobby. I have noticed that some people on Audiogon "play the music card" when their technical ideas are questioned. This tends to discount their technical credentials.
Your "example" has not actually been cited, so I really can't comment further. I agreed above that it "seems strange to find the sensitivity of a speaker system to be higher than the driver spec." but I think that there may be reason for this, and not entirly a result of the enclosure, so let's have all the facts before we debate further.
Eldartford, all are welcome in audio. Technical or otherwise. Technical knowledge infers no superiority whatsoever in terms of listening or being able to critique a system.
While I can hold my own to an extent in some areas of the technical side of the house, my respect and admiration seems to flow towards those who focus on the music. Again, since music is the end result, and I have absolutely zero interest in listening to a square wave, it feels natural for me to become one heck of a lot more enthusiastic about getting together with someone who simply sits down and plays me whatever moves their soul. Others may feel more comfortable in having lunch and discussing the benefits and tradeoffs of short coil/long overhang and vice versa.
To each, his own. As I always say, that's why they make vanilla AND chocolate.
Though I do feel your comment "play the music card" definitely shows a bit of nose in the air - see my last comments in my previous post.
I could easily name a manufacturer and model for my example, but I don't need to muck rake. I was hoping that many here would be able to infer exactly who it was from my description - it's a well known and respected marque here on Audiogon, and I myself hold the company in the highest regard productwise...
I want to get real "technical" here and tell you all that the La Scala is rated at a nominal impedance of 8 ohms not 4 . I don't know why Sean started with that assumption. Thus whatever data was measured at 8 ohms is as accurate and reliable as its source and no assumptions, formulae,or other manipulation of the numbers need apply. The second part is that they are loud as you would ever want a speaker to be. 22 watts sure, go ahead, especially from an 845/211 SET. 222 watts even better but its not the volume its all in the reactance over the resistance which is = Q, I gather from their behavior they are low Q speakers, but I will have to look that up. Or I can ask Trelja or Joe as I know him what he thinks.
Trelja...I guess the point that I still have not gotten across (my fault) is that I can "walk and chew gum at the same time". And to use your example vanilla and chocolate ice cream go well together. I am perplexed by your comments about "listening to square waves". Who does that?
In the world of music appreciation, subjective opinions carry a lot of weight, although professional musicians may have a thing or two to say about technique. To make a purely technical comment regarding SPL of drivers and speaker systems requires that you have some objective data to back it up. That's how the technical game is played.
I agree that "technical knowledge infers no superiority whatsoever in terms of listening or being able to critique a system", but when you don't like what you hear you need such a person to fix your problem. And technical knowledge certainly does not prevent music appreciation.
By the way, you never weighed in on a recent music thread about to the young woman violinist Hilary Hahn, and branching off to related discussions about violinists in general. You must have missed the thread.
This is a silly argument. Let's both enjoy the music, and if you have a technical problem I will try to help. If you have recommendations about music, I will listen.
Mechans: The La Scala's stock woofer, the K33, is a 4 ohm woofer. Their "Pro" model La Scala woofer, which is the K43, is an 8 ohm woofer. The K33 is better suited for a sealed design whereas the K43 is better suited towards venting. If you do some digging over at AA's speaker forums, you'll see this mentioned in a few posts. In these posts, you'll find mention of re-designing the bass section and venting it to achieve greater extension at the expense of transient response using the K33. Substituting the K43 will give added low frequency extension, but due to the increase in impedance, sensitivity in the bass region is reduced. Those with tubed amps don't care about this though as the higher impedance is better suited to what they are using AND the bass extension helps to fill out the bottom octave that most tubed gear is typically lacking.
Given that the woofer is less efficient than the horns being used, you not only need to pump more power into it to get it to go, but it is pulling twice the current to achieve output. Given that bass requires the greatest excursion and amount of current draw of any part of the musical spectrum, i consider this a 4 ohm load. Joe's comments about performing a sweep across the frequency spectrum and watching current draw vs output would demonstrate why i do this. The "saving grace" of this speaker in that it can work reasonably well with lower powered units that aren't "muscular" in terms of current output is that it is much more efficient than the average design. As such, it can play loudly without much voltage or current, but the true potential, tonal balance and transient response is best displayed when used with an amp that can deal with such a load.
El: Measuring the power output at clipping demonstrates what the entire amp ( power supply, driver stages, output stages, etc... ) are capable of on the whole. By comparing the output levels at various impedances using this method, you can see how the amp will respond to low impedances, reactive loads that vary with frequency, long duration transients, power bandwidth, etc... As such, i have to re-iterate once again that knowing how spec's are derived and what they mean are what make spec's useful. Given that various manufacturers rate their products with different criteria in mind, "stressing" the componont removes all the variables involved and demonstrates EXACTLY what it is capable of under worst case conditions. If the amp can deliver the goods under these conditions into the various load impedances and levels of reactance involved on the bench, chances are, it can deliver the goods during normal use into the non-linear loads that loudspeakers present to them during dynamic listening conditions.
As far as your comments pertaining to sine waves being more demanding than music, i beg to differ. Suffice it to say that sine waves are consistent in phase, amplitude and duration. Music is anything but that and requires much greater speed, control and finesse. As far as listening to square waves and / or heavily clipped signals, every time one hears a "rock & roll" electric guitarist "jamming", they are hearing both of the above. This is the reason why tubes still rule for most guitar players as they find the clipping characteristics that they introduce to their sound to be more enjoyable than the clipping characteristics that most SS gear demonstrates. The fact that the tubes are also current limited, which introduces a fatter, rounder tone to the bottom end due to lack of control, is also what they are looking for. In effect, they are taking advantage of all of the known traits of the amplification device that they are using that i'm asking the industry to provide spec's for in the sensitivity vs efficiency rating debate.
As far as your comments about most audio systems being SS based, i agree. Then again, you should go to a "high end audio salon" and ask them what percentage of tubed gear they are selling as compared to SS gear. I think that you'll find that the ratio isn't exactly what you were expecting, hence the validity of my desiring to use the more informative efficiency rating rather than the "who cares how much current the speaker draws" sensitivity rating. Sean
Eldartford, I would also like to offer that when you have a technical problem, I will try to help.
Allow me to applaud you on your skill - walking and chewing gum, CONGRATULATIONS!!! But, can you rub your stomach in a circular motion at the same time?
Back to vanilla and chocolate, or music - I'm not much into classical music. Do you feel that I might want to apologize for not commenting on the violinist???
Trelja...Only counterclockwise. Sean says that the music you listen to is square waves, so you might want to reconsider your position.
Sean...I was talking only about average current draw when I said that a sine wave is more demanding than music. Your method of evaluating a power amp would be most appropriate for in depth investigation of its design, but something a lot simpler is needed to summarize for the consumer.
Sean...Sales of Tubes vs Transistors...If your definition of a "High End" shop (pardon me: salon) is that they sell mostly tubes, your observation is correct.
Finally, some semblance of humor!
Eldartford, Sean told you I listen to New Wave, not square waves.
I'm a classical music guy. Didn't comment on the Hillary Hahn thread. I must hate music and talk about S/N ratios all day.
Lousyreeds1...Just an example. You are excused this time.
Sean: I am just quoted the manufacturer claim for the K-33 and if you check out the website for Klipsch under current production of the Heritage series they still claim a nominal 8 ohms even if they changed the woofer. BTW all La Scalas are "vented" not ported, inside the back of bass chamber the cabinet , I have seen some with the point of the bass cabinet open if that's what you mean. I have no doubt that they pull more current than the tweeters or sqwaukers, that is probably the reason they sound much richer with more headroom.