old school amps vs new amp sound quality


Jimg

CarAudio.com Newbie
Mar 19, 2019
18
0
working on updating a 2012 mustang stereo system

basic question how does the sound quality of new Class D amps sound on mid and High compared to old school AB amps

will be running a Dayton dsp408 ,  don't know if I want to go full active or just use the crossovers in the tweeter 

I have a couple of Alpine 3527 amps   power rating is 30wx4 into 4ohm  ,  I purchased a set of focal iss130   and a set of focal iss165 that would be running on them

I also a Linear power 2202       110w x2 into 4ohm        I thought about running one 10 inch or one 8 inch in the trunk 

so the question is  should I just use the old amps or start over with new amps.  I am looking at pioneer GM-d   or Soundqubed amps,,,   new amps do have more power, but how do they sound compared  to the old school AB amps 

 

DRBOOM

CarAudio.com Well Known
Nov 21, 2018
249
51
Mate, Its kinda hard to say as amps made back in those days had a different market trend that consumers looked out for.  Today consumers are not interested in specs but rather the foot print and efficiency.  Signal to noise ratio and damping factor is not a concern anymore but to me it is. :fro:

Having said that, everyone is focus on saving power hence the class D circuitry in car amps makes them in small foot print and big power without draining your car battery and that is where the market is focused today, same goes for your home where you are encouraged to install solar system to save energy. :uhoh:

I say if you have the gear and they have kept you happy in the past, I say use it and only if you need more volume then you can look for alternative amps.  I am currently using a PPI PC450 amp with a signal to noise ratio of 105db and damping factor of over 500 means my speakers are well controlled and they are very clean amps, but again, that is my choice. 

Todays trend pushes consumer to be aware of power saving methods hence class D amps are now available for automotive use.  But I still have mates who still own and use old school amps and they will not buy new products as they love the sound from them.

The small foot print on the new class D speaker and subwoofer amps is always a plus and makes you wonder how this little amp will produce 1000rms at a given load but today , that is made possible due to the class D and T circuitry. :nerd: , thanks to the nerds.

Give it a run and see how you go mate!

 
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Reactions: Talontsi90

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,262
252
South Coast Metro, CA
go full active, bridge the alpine to the front mid/tweeter and linear power to the other mid/tweeter. Whatever makes more power should go to the mid.  Then get a new mono block amp for the sub, leave rears on head unit power. Any effort or power into the rears will destroy your soundstage.

 
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Reactions: denim

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,262
252
South Coast Metro, CA
as for sound quality, you wont notice anything with a quality class D nowadays vs class ab of back then, If anything the SQ class of class D amps will sound better due to high headroom.  There's a reason why legendary audio makers like Zed audio and hybrid audio technologies move to class D. The headroom is just too good and they have made leaps and bounds on how sound is produced on the class D circuitry along with output filters etc....  The low end(but still decent quality) class D will sound fine as well for the most part but has a higher noise floor.

 

Talontsi90

CarAudio.com VIP
Mar 14, 2019
400
25
Mate, Its kinda hard to say as amps made back in those days had a different market trend that consumers looked out for.  Today consumers are not interested in specs but rather the foot print and efficiency.  Signal to noise ratio and damping factor is not a concern anymore but to me it is. :fro:

Having said that, everyone is focus on saving power hence the class D circuitry in car amps makes them in small foot print and big power without draining your car battery and that is where the market is focused today, same goes for your home where you are encouraged to install solar system to save energy. :uhoh:

I say if you have the gear and they have kept you happy in the past, I say use it and only if you need more volume then you can look for alternative amps.  I am currently using a PPI PC450 amp with a signal to noise ratio of 105db and damping factor of over 500 means my speakers are well controlled and they are very clean amps, but again, that is my choice. 

Todays trend pushes consumer to be aware of power saving methods hence class D amps are now available for automotive use.  But I still have mates who still own and use old school amps and they will not buy new products as they love the sound from them.

The small foot print on the new class D speaker and subwoofer amps is always a plus and makes you wonder how this little amp will produce 1000rms at a given load but today , that is made possible due to the class D and T circuitry. :nerd: , thanks to the nerds.

Give it a run and see how you go mate!
Yea, theres a reason im using AB amps in my build...

 

DRBOOM

CarAudio.com Well Known
Nov 21, 2018
249
51
as for sound quality, you wont notice anything with a quality class D nowadays vs class ab of back then, If anything the SQ class of class D amps will sound better due to high headroom.  There's a reason why legendary audio makers like Zed audio and hybrid audio technologies move to class D. The headroom is just too good and they have made leaps and bounds on how sound is produced on the class D circuitry along with output filters etc....  The low end(but still decent quality) class D will sound fine as well for the most part but has a higher noise floor.
This is something I did not know, much better headroom.  Thanks for that valuable information, Jeffdachef! :graduate:

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,262
252
South Coast Metro, CA
This is something I did not know, much better headroom.  Thanks for that valuable information, Jeffdachef! :graduate:
headroom is just overall power.   Music is dynamic and some recordings demand a lot more from the amp which puts the amp into clipping or distortion territory which will make your mids and highs sound bad regardless class a/b or class D (class A/B is a bit softer and less pronounced though)  For a 100 rms class a/b operating at 100% capacity, there's a 200 rms class D operating at 75% capacity, which one will be cleaner power/signal? Which one can handle recordings that demand more?  Of course this is for anyone that listens to their music relatively loud (not extreme but at least to the point where its hard to hold a proper conversation)  There's SQ heads that listen to really low levels that get by just fine with 50 to 75 rms per channel so the headroom doesnt matter to them.

 

sdcerreta

CarAudio.com Newbie
Apr 21, 2019
16
-4
Flagstaff, AZ
High quality Class D amps are great. As others mentioned, less power consumption, smaller cables, no need for extra bass and caps. Unless you are competing, class D will work fine. With that said, I am old and went back to class A/B amps after about 10 years with a pair of JL audio class D amps, which I loved. Now I have fat cables again. 

 

stephgirl

Senior VIP Member
Mar 5, 2014
228
5
Covina CA
Jeffdachef is right when it comes down to the sound SQ at only 50 or 75 rms as he said. I have two Kenwood XR401-4 75 rms - 4 ch Class D amps that are High Def certified in my 04 Tacoma X-cab truck. I don't need a lot of mega power to fill my small cab with great sound. I have a high def sound system in there also. I have one amp to my High Def Pioneer component speakers to front and 6x8 fill in back. The other amp bridged into 2 ch over 200 rms to my 2 Polk 8 inch subs mounted in the old Kicker Substation tube boxes. ( I really miss the old Kicker SubStaion tube boexs made by the stillwater unit of kicker.) The two Kenwood amps have plenty of power for Class D. I can turn up the sound loud with no problem but i can''t have a conversation with my passenger as Jeffdachef said. I don't listen to my system at high sound levels all the time and i would suspect most others don't ether. Unless you want to loose your hearing fast. So at moderate sound levels that most listen at it is great sound. And as the music dynamics change in the song i have plenty of headroom for that. But for the few times i have my favorite tune i want to turn up LOUD, i can. And i am a responsible car audio sound owner too. No loud sound at night in my neighborhood. Respect my neighbors. Turn it down when at a stop light not to blow out the car next to you.

I can testify to the ZED Audio comment. I spoke to Stephen one Saturday litle over year or so ago when i dropped off my Boston Acoustic amp for repair. He made a special trip to the shop to receive my amp and it was just him and I there. He normally don't work on Saturday but he lived close by the shop. Or maybe it was the blonde girl dropping off the amp too. When i ask him what he had new or has been designing recently he spoke about the Class D amps and the designs he worked on for Phoenix Gold and Focal amps that are Class D

https://phoenixgold.com/sx-series/

FDP Digital Line
https://www.focal-america.com/lines/performance-amplifiers/
Stephen said only the USA Focal brand and not the European Focal Brand. He laughed and said, tried to offer it to the European Focal brand but they declined and said they will do there own thing.

Side note, Stephen laughed and said the D in class D amps don't mean Digital. He laughed and said it was named that because it was just the next letter in the alphabet to put a name to the new technology. Class A, Class A/B, Class C, Then Class D so on.

So it is not all about the mega power for say but for what you need in your system you want. My old Boston Acustics amps where big under the smaller Tacoma seats. So for the Class D amp they have come a long way in technology. I see and HEAR to many sometimes say i want this 200000 million RMS amp for my 30 inch speakers in my smart car. Not always the case. Your question is a very good one and intelligent one to ask. I don't consider myself an expert but many on here are. Take the help and advice from the experts on here they give you and put together an system you will be happy with.
 
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