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Car Amplifiers Information

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Car Amplifiers Information

 

Car amplifiers gives you a clean power source that can drive your speakers without straining. Your music will sound cleaner and more defined at all volume levels when using an amplifier.

A high-powered car amplifier will raise the amplitude of your deck’s signal to over 50 volts. It can convert a low-power signal from a pre-amplifier into a high-power signal (tens to hundreds of watts) needed to drive a loudspeaker.

There are a few key features to car amplifiers.

Built-in Crossovers Often used to keep high-frequencies from reaching a subwoofer. A low-pass crossover allows only low frequencies to be amplified. A high-pass crossover allows only high frequencies to be amplified. It keeps low bass away from small speakers, so they can play more efficiently.
     
Bridged Power Bridging a car amplifier, combines the power output of two channels into one channel. Bridging allows the car amplifier to drive one speaker with more power than the amp could produce for two speakers. Because of this high power output, bridging is the best way to drive a single subwoofer. Bridging an amplifier, combines the power output of two channels into one channel.

Bridging allows the car amplifier to drive one speaker with more power than the amp could produce for two speakers.
Because of this high power output, bridging is the best way to drive a single subwoofer. If the amp is bridgeable, the owner's manual will have directions that tell you how.

Also, keep in mind that most car amplifiers need to see a 4-ohm load when bridged to mono operation. If you want to bridge your amp, you should use one 4-ohm speaker or, if you prefer multiple woofers, wire two 8-ohm speakers in parallel. (Consult your manual before operating your amp in bridged mode.)
   
Discrete Output Devices There are 2-3 basic types of output devices found on car audio amplifiers 1). integrated circuits, 2) bipolar transistors, or MOSFETs. An integrated circuit (or IC) is found only on relatively low-wattage (20 watts RMS per channel or less) car amplifiers called "bridged transformerless" amps. An IC can not pass enough current to work on a more powerful car amp and is not considered a discrete output device. Bipolar transistors and MOSFETs are found on the output stages of high powered car amplifiers. They are fast enough and can handle enough current to send wattage greater than 20 watts per channel to your speakers. Both of these types of transistors are considered discrete output devices. Usually there are two per channel, but some amps feature as many as four per channel.
   
Mono Car Amplifiers Mono (or monaural) car amplifiers are single channel amps, well-suited for low-frequency applications. Mono car amplifiers are stable to 2-ohms so you can connect them safely to two 4-ohm woofers wired in parallel.
   
MOSFET (Metal Oxide Semiconductor Field Effect Transistor) A type of large output transistor used in the final stages of many power amplifiers, and commonly found in most car amplifiers today. Mosfet transistors are most often discrete devices, used with smaller driver transistors and other devices, to convert a small signal to a large one. They are highly stable and efficient, compared to the bipolar types that preceded them.
  
Ohm The measurement of electrical resistance and system impedance. It is a measure of the degree to which electrons are limited in both velocity and quantity in passing through a circuit. In Impedance measurements, this takes into account, the mechanical resistance inherent in the motion of transducers. The standard is usually 4 ohms for car audio.
   
Parametric A type of equalization that permits the center frequency, the filter shape, and the amplitude of each band to be varied. This gives you extremely precise control of the tonal balance in your vehicle. (More versitile than graphic equalizers)
  
Preamp output This is the first stage of amplification in which the amplitude of a very low-level audio signal is increased. The first stage of amplification in which the amplitude of a very low-level audio signal is increased.
   
RMS Power The higher the RMS figure, the louder and cleaner your music sounds. The RMS rating is the maximum the car amplifier can put out all day long without distorting. The RMS rating is very important.
   
Peak Power The peak power rating tells you the maximum wattage a car amplifier can deliver as a brief burst The RMS rating is more important.
  
Signal-to-Noise Ratio A measurement of noise level in a device compared to the level of the signal. Higher numbers signify a greater difference, which is better.
  
Speaker input Speaker inputs let you connect an amp to a receiver that lacks RCA preamp outputs.
    
Total Harmonic Distortion (THD) The THD is usually expressed in dB. the ratio of (a) the sum of the powers of all harmonic frequencies above the fundamental frequency to (b) the power of the fundamental frequency
    
Tri-Way Output Car Amplifier setup that powers a pair of stereo speakers and one subwoofer simultaneously from the outputs of a single 2-channel car amplifier.

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