AOA Forums AOA Forums AOA Forums Folding For Team 45 AOA Files Home Front Page Become an AOA Subscriber! UserCP Calendar Memberlist FAQ Search Forum Home


Go Back   AOA Forums > Hardware > Graphics and Sound cards; Speakers and other Peripherals


Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Rate Thread
  #1 (permalink)  
Old 17th November, 2004, 10:10 PM
Member
 
Join Date: October 2004
Location: U.A.E
Posts: 268

how do i test an amplifier ??

I want to know how good my amplifier is, but I'm totally clueless on audio measurements and standards. Basically I want to get a value for sound quality and speaker power output or something like that.

How can I test how well it runs? Can I do it without extra electronic gear?

I'm a graphics junkie so consider me tone deaf when it comes to audio equipment know-how
__________________
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #2 (permalink)  
Old 17th November, 2004, 10:40 PM
Gizmo's Avatar
Chief BBS Administrator
BassTeroids Champion, Global Player Champion, Aim & Fire Champion, Puzzle Maniax Champion, Othello Champion, Canyon Glider Champion, Unicycle Challenge Champion, YetiSports 9: Final Spit Champion, Zed Champion
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Webb City, Mo
Posts: 16,178
Send a message via ICQ to Gizmo Send a message via AIM to Gizmo Send a message via MSN to Gizmo Send a message via Yahoo to Gizmo Send a message via Skype™ to Gizmo

Without access to some fairly specialized equipment, I don't know of any way to make a qualitative analysis.

Does it sound good?

Generally speaking, a good amplifier should produce a faithful copy of the input signal at its output, throughout its entire operating range. Most amps have problems at the extreme low and high end of their frequency range as well as at high volume levels.

Áedán, I'm sure, has more experience in this area than I do.

However, here are some things that I like to look at:

With no input signal (inputs grounded, not floating), and all controls centered, how much background hiss is there? Most amps will have a little, barely noticable. Cheap amps will have a clearly audible hiss, good amps will have near none.

Now adjust the equalizer controls. Cheap amps will tend to have more noise as you increase the high frequenies, and may pick up a little hum as you increase the low ones. Middle-of-the-road amps will change a little at the high end, but shouldn't change much on the low end. Good amps won't change at all.

We all have a favorite song or piece of music. Try listening to it through this amp. Compare it to what you are used to hearing. Does it sound 'brighter' (more treble) or 'darker' (more bass)? A lot of cheap amps will tend to give you more bass, because most people buying cheap amps are also head-bangers; they don't care how good it sounds, as long as it is loud. Thing is, if you listen carefully, you'll hear distortions in the sound; the kick drum will rattle, the high notes won't be crisp and clear, but rather 'fuzzy'. Bad speakers can cause similar problems, so be careful.

That's about all I can think of. There is a part of listening to music that is, IMHO, impossible to measure. You can take the same piece of music, played through two systems that spec identically according to test equipment, and yet it will sound subtly different. I don't know why, but I have seen it demonstrated.

Anyway, those're my thoughts.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 17th November, 2004, 10:55 PM
Member
 
Join Date: October 2004
Location: U.A.E
Posts: 268

Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo

With no input signal (inputs grounded, not floating), and all controls centered, how much background hiss is there? Most amps will have a little, barely noticable. Cheap amps will have a clearly audible hiss, good amps will have near none.
good tip, thanks Haven't noticed any hissing on my system In fact, I keep the amplifier on at all times

Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo
We all have a favorite song or piece of music. Try listening to it through this amp. Compare it to what you are used to hearing. Does it sound 'brighter' (more treble) or 'darker' (more bass)? A lot of cheap amps will tend to give you more bass, because most people buying cheap amps are also head-bangers; they don't care how good it sounds, as long as it is loud. Thing is, if you listen carefully, you'll hear distortions in the sound; the kick drum will rattle, the high notes won't be crisp and clear, but rather 'fuzzy'. Bad speakers can cause similar problems, so be careful.
The one I've got is definately clearer than creative pc speaker systems, and that sounded awsome to me. The bass doesn't have what I call 'the spit' when a song with a lot of bass is playing.

Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmo
There is a part of listening to music that is, IMHO, impossible to measure. You can take the same piece of music, played through two systems that spec identically according to test equipment, and yet it will sound subtly different. I don't know why, but I have seen it demonstrated.
You're right. Songs with any piano music sounded crap to me, but now I find I can listen to them.
__________________
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 17th November, 2004, 11:35 PM
Gizmo's Avatar
Chief BBS Administrator
BassTeroids Champion, Global Player Champion, Aim & Fire Champion, Puzzle Maniax Champion, Othello Champion, Canyon Glider Champion, Unicycle Challenge Champion, YetiSports 9: Final Spit Champion, Zed Champion
 
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Webb City, Mo
Posts: 16,178
Send a message via ICQ to Gizmo Send a message via AIM to Gizmo Send a message via MSN to Gizmo Send a message via Yahoo to Gizmo Send a message via Skype™ to Gizmo

Quote:
Originally Posted by mashakos
The one I've got is definately clearer than creative pc speaker systems, and that sounded awsome to me. The bass doesn't have what I call 'the spit' when a song with a lot of bass is playing.
That's exactly what I was talking about. When you hear that, you are driving the amp into distortion. Sometimes that is a characteristic of the amp, sometimes it is caused by the speakers.
Digg this Post!Add Post to del.icio.usBookmark Post in TechnoratiFurl this Post!
Reply With Quote
Reply



Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
New iPod amplifier uses valves. MONKEYMAN Random Nonsense! 2 7th March, 2007 01:08 PM
You've heard of the Mensa test, here's the Munsa test. mookydooky Mookydooky's Just for laughs! 4 26th December, 2006 08:29 PM
Zalman headphone amplifier with hi fi speakers experience mashakos Graphics and Sound cards; Speakers and other Peripherals 2 17th November, 2004 10:51 PM
Another IQ test dod Random Nonsense! 21 24th April, 2003 05:09 PM
HD Test? Shashkastorm General Hardware Discussion 2 7th April, 2003 03:16 AM


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 07:07 PM.


Copyright ©2001 - 2010, AOA Forums
Don't Click Here Don't Click Here Either

Search Engine Friendly URLs by vBSEO 3.3.0