In this week’s Audio Premium content, Mike Elliott continues his series on calibrating your system. This time we explore amps – the types that are available, and which are best for pro audio.
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There are many ways in which amplifiers can be designed, and each design has their own pros and cons. These different designs are typically organized into a class system using letters.
If you have the luxury to do a shootout and compare these amplifiers side by side then by all means you should do just that. However shootouts can be either pricey or impossible to get together because of the rarity of some designs.
While we as audio engineers and musicians normally only care about how they sound, having a working knowledge of amplifier design can help us figure out, roughly, the sound of an amp before even hearing it. This is particularly useful if you are looking for new a new amp for your new speakers but have no way to “try before you buy”.
Also keep in mind that while a particular amp design may have certain characteristics, a little change here or there in design could lead to a huge change in sound (particularly when cheap parts are used in a good design). Again nothing beats hearing the amp for yourself!
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