How do you judge am amp, by specs. or how it sounds
I have a unanswerable question I think, but lets hear your thoughts.
We have a disagreeance in how to qualify am amp.
I think it is wort a discussion, so here is a segment from another thread;
sorry for the layout, I don't know how else to do it.
This is part of a conversation in another thread.
Re: Where to buy RAINBOW AMPS?
There are 4 and only 4 specs that determine how an amp will sound below clipping.
1)Distortion: If you can't hear it its low enough. If the distortion measurements are the BAL there is no difference from this spec.
2)S/N: If it's inaudible then nothing here as well.
3)Frequency response: If an amp sounds "warm" it has an issue in this spec. An amp should not "sound" anything. It's job is to increase the voltage and current of a signal without altering it. If it is rolling off or has non linearities within the frequency range it is being used in, then it isn't a good amp.
4)Power: Power makes the world go 'round. Psychoacoustics tell us that louder sounds better. Extra power also allows the system to be more dynamic. Even if you only ever use around 50w having 200 on tap is only going to help. Effortless dynamics are created by having headroom.
If those 4 specs are inaudibly different, there is not a person alive who can distinguish the difference between two amps. For any amp worth owning (and I dont hardly limit this to "high-end" brands, I use old Orion and Phoenix Gold, hardly "high-end") the only spec that needs to be considered is #4 where more or the money is better. Beyond that you're paying for intangibles: reputation, the boost to your ego, reliability (which is almost a wash with solid state electronics above budget grade anyway), and customer service (which with reliable electronics isn't often needed). Spend you money however you want, but if you think spending a ton on amps is going to give you verifiably better sound, think again.
Don't we all know that specs can not tell us the true story of how one amp will preform vs. another.
What mystical powers or abilities do you think an amplifier possesses which can't be measured and aren't captured in the above stated specs ?
The warmth, image ...
Are all captured in the specs of frequency response and distortion.
I do question those who have opinions here, have you had the oppertunity to listen to the rainbow amps?
Don't need to listen, just need to know the specs.
If not, how can it be determined that it is "not worth the upgrade,"
By examining those difference, all of which ARE measureable, which contribute to the "sound characteristics" of an amplifier.
Power output 65 watts RMS x 4 (4 W load),
250 watts x 4 max output,
500 watts x 2 max (bridged mode) ·
Frequency response: 10 to 30,000 Hz ·
Signal to Noise ratio: > 90 dB · THD: < 0.04%
4 Channel: 50W at 4 ohms or
100W at 2 ohms x 4;
3 Channel: 50W x 2 , 200W x 1
at 4 ohms; 2 Channel: 200W x
2 at 4 ohms
0.005% 10dB 20Hz to 20kHz, +0 / -0.25dB;
10Hz t0 100kHz, +0 / -3.0dB
0.5V to 8V 105dB (1.5V) 12.0V Idle: 2.5A Rated
power 40A (4
Well, I am assuming that by both of your definitions of what matters in an amp, one would conclude that these two amps are pretty close in the way they will make a given set of speakers sound, correct?
THD is below what is considered audioble, rms is compareable, S/N basically a wash, and frequency Res. is to the threshold of the human ear on both.
would you agree?
I will state the fact that the two amps these specs are for are:
Pyramid PB448X Super Blue 4x65W Amplifier
you make the call.
First you have to keep in mind the Pyramid is likely overrated and the McIntosh slightly underrated....so chances are good the McIntosh is capable of more power.
But yes, assuming they are both capable of inaudibly different power output (ie limit the power output of the McIntosh), distortion is below audibility, inaudible differences in frequency response and no audible noise from either amp........they would be audibly indistinguishable.
There is NO reason they would sound different.
Sure, there issues such as reliability to consider that would not necessarily make the Pyramid an attractive candidate for purchase. But that does not mean they would sound different
I respectfully disagree.
For the sake of debate, how do you explain how nice tube amps sound?
Mine is bigger than yours!