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Topic: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer. (Read 1566 times) previous topic - next topic
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Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Hello. For years now i've been using an old kenwood ampli and speakers set i recovered from a relative for my computer. Much better sound than any of those Logitech computer speakers i've used before even thought it's certainly some 30 or so years old and it cost me nothing.

However, lately the ampli started showing it's age. From time to time there's a "click" coming from it that sounds like the click it does when i turn it on/off and i don't have any sound for some time (despite the LCD screen clearly showing the ampli is still on). At first it did this for a few seconds before "clicking on" again but now it does it for several minutes. The speakers on the other hand are still working perfectly so i figured i would replace the ampli.

I had a look on amazon (France) to see what they have as small amplis but i really don't know what i should take. I remember reading stuff here a long time ago and basically wanted to find an ampli that have the same power and impedance as my speakers. Those are passive speakers with max power input 30W, impedance 6 ohm. However none of the amplis description i've seen on amazon even state the impedance and most are at least 50W output power.

So i came back here in search of advice, especially i need to know whether impedance is really important (if it is, why is it nowhere to be found in product description) and also if it's safe to use an ampli with higher power output than my speaker's maximum input provided i don't put the volume to the maximum and thus don't "output" the full power if i understand correctly how an ampli works.

Also if someone has any suggestion for a good affordable small ampli that's available easily in Europe i'll take it (the advise i mean). I don't need anything super powerful, just something that does the job with my speaker set. Otherwise i'll try to find one myself but at least i need to know what to look for.

Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #1
You are worrying too much. A 50W amplifier won't damage your speakers unless you turn the volume up too high. And as far as impedance, if the amplifier will drive 6 ohms OR LESS then it will work just fine with your speakers.

Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #2
Not sure what's readily available in France, but I wouldn't sweat about a replacement amplifier's power output being a little higher than the speakers' stated measurements. You won't be playing at 100% volume all the time, will you?

One of those micro/mini boxes with amp, tuner & CD player, as long as it has an auxiliary input, might be worth looking at, as it would be compact and add extra functions to that of a plain amplifier. Denon make some nice ones, like this:

Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #3
I'm not sure what the situation is like where you are in France, but it is often worth taking a look at used gear on Craigslist or equivalents. Definitely make sure the amp can drive 6ohm loads, as pdq suggests, and test it before you buy.

Keep in mind how many inputs you want (and whether you want radio) and of what type (phono/LP inputs tend to be preamplified and are generally unsuitable for other sources).

A relatives' 90s h/k receiver just went out and I managed to find a fully functional 45wpc NAD receiver from ~1980 for rather little money that drives his ~4ohm speakers far better than a cheap digital amp and has the sufficient and appropriate inputs for his needs.

Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #4
Depending on what price range you're looking at, a receiver is often less expensive than an equivalent amplifier.   Separate components were always somewhat of a specialty item and now they are even so.   Receivers (especially 5.1 channel and 7.1 channel home theater receivers) are mass-produced, mass-distributed, and sold-priced competitively.   I paid less than $300 USD for my home theater receiver.

If you decide to get a home theater receiver you don't have to use all of the channels, and you'll get digital inputs.

Or at a lower budget,  I have on of these for listening to TV sound on small speakers in my bedroom.   (You may not find the exact same thing in France, and at Parts Express you have to buy the power separately, so it costs more than "advertised" but it's still really cheap.)

...Too much power isn't usually a problem unless teenagers or drunk people are in charge of the volume control.  ;)      

An older used amplifier or receiver should sound just fine (assuming no defects).    Most of the advances in amplifiers/receivers have been related to making things smaller & cheaper (including more power at a lower price), and remote control, and digital inputs, etc.

Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #5
Though I haven't bought an amplifier in years (my problem is getting rid of them), since I came to France my main sites for electronics are amazon and The latter has a pretty wide range from diy all the way to audiophool priced stuff, including their own badged amps. (I have no affiliation with them btw). I believe the claimed power output on many of these amps is pretty optimistic so as others have said its nothing to worry about. Bonne chance :)


Re: Need help to replace ampli for my my computer.

Reply #6
Thanks for the answers. I finally found one that does 4-8 omh so it should be ok. Finding where the impedance was indicated was actually the hardest part.

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