Audio reproduction lesson #1

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by 04, Nov 19, 2002.

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Can you hear the 1% distortion? (starts at 5 seconds into the track and jumps to 5%)

  1. I can hear it clearly

    19 vote(s)
    73.1%
  2. I cannot hear it at all

    4 vote(s)
    15.4%
  3. I can barely hear it

    3 vote(s)
    11.5%
  1. 04

    04 Guest

    I hear a lot of people commenting on how low the Total harmonic distortion is on their amplifier, sometimes .001 % or lower!

    We all know that distortion is bad, so its definatly a good thing to have such low distortion percentages right?

    Of course. Unfortunatly not many people realize how hard .001% distortion is to hear. Something people should realize when buying a new amplifier is that the THD percentage does not matter!!! Any modern amplifier has less than audible distortion, unless of course you are driving it beyond its linear operating range!

    Now before all the audiophiles come and get me saying all amplifiers sound the same :rolleyes: think about what I am saying.

    No one can hear 1% distortion in music, sorry. If you can, you have VERY VERY VERY good hearing, but I have never heard of anyone being able to do such a feat. BUT, with test tones, the story is much different. You can clearly hear at the 5 second mark where the 1% distortion kicks in. I unfortunatly do not have the order of distortion available, as I am shamelessly stealling the sound file from the eatel.com car audio page. Also note, that the SPEAKERS are the main culprit of distortion in the system. Only the most terrible amplifiers EVER would have more distortion than a loudspeaker.

    2khz tone with 1% and 5% distortion added

    Here is the link to the page I stole the sound file from: http://www.eatel.net/~amptech/elecdisc/caraudio.htm Check it out if you want more info on distortion, or car audio in general.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Oct 13, 2003
  2. MerkurMan

    MerkurMan Gimme Nuts, Bolts and 12 Volts

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    I always enjoy learning more about car audio, and audio in general. :) I'll never be able to afford nice equipment, but it's nice being "in-the-know" about certain things. Especially when you have a lot of co-workers who are obsessed with numbers and looks and crap. "Ooooh I have a thousand watt this and boom boom that and these cost me this much" ... blah.
     
  3. 04

    04 Guest

    Thats the thing though, you don't have to spend a fortune to get a nice stereo, if all you want is a pair of speakers, cd player and reciever, you can get a great system for 500 dollars or less. :)
     
  4. Gavin

    Gavin Active Member

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    What about those hybrid tube amps that have high distortion but sound great?
     
  5. 04

    04 Guest

    Your talking about for guitar amplifiers right? Well the point of distortion in guitar amplifiers is very obvious. How else would you have hard heavy rock without massily overdriven output? :)

    I am talking about audio REPRODUCTION, not audio PRODUCTION. There is a big difference.

    Also, remember that their is a big difference in sounding "good" and sounding "accurate". I don't believe all the SET lovers with their class A 2w audiophile amplifiers really believe their amplifier is more accurate than a good solid state. They just like the sound of the tubes because of the added distortion, notably second order, which adds the so called warmth that you hear.
     
  6. Gavin

    Gavin Active Member

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    No I'm talking about car audio amplifiers.
     
  7. Gavin

    Gavin Active Member

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  8. 04

    04 Guest

    GIMMICK.

    Sorry I have to be so blunt but they are obviously cashing in on the home audio "tube fanatic" crowd.

    Tubes are great, it depends on what you want them to do, however.
     
  9. 04

    04 Guest

    Yup, and the home audio tube amplifiers are very expensive usually. They do not perform better than a solid state amplifier other than in sound quality, but that is percived by the eye of the beholder anyways.

    Also something worth noting is that you can make a tube amplifier technically better than a ss, but it would be harder, and more costly.

    I personally say stick to the modern technology, and leave the tubes for fun "just to see what it sounds like".
     
  10. Toy Turbo 2

    Toy Turbo 2 Sabrina, don't just stare at it. Eat it.

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    what would pretty decent speakers cost...

    i am talking enough to listen to music decently loud
     
  11. 04

    04 Guest

    It appears though that the USamps has actually a tube based input section, the tubes are only used for preamplification.

    So its not really a tube amplifier.

    I don't see why you would want the tubes on the input section unless you like lots of distortion (which is not a bad thing!!!) tube amps do have a "different" sound to them.
     
  12. Gavin

    Gavin Active Member

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    Yea, it's a hybrid tube amp. From what I hear, they sound very nice, though I haven't had any listening time with them personally.
     
  13. 04

    04 Guest

    Well, unfortunatly that is a very difficult question to answer. First, I do not know your definition of decent.

    And I also need to know what your definition of music "decently loud" is.
     
  14. Toy Turbo 2

    Toy Turbo 2 Sabrina, don't just stare at it. Eat it.

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    damn, audio is one of the few things i haven't looked up
     
  15. 04

    04 Guest

    bump for the day crew. :)
     
  16. LOUDSYSTEM

    LOUDSYSTEM Guest

    someones on a rampage :o
     
  17. 04

    04 Guest

    Rampage? :confused:
     
  18. Short Bus

    Short Bus Beep beep!

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    The car I bought a couple months ago had some Rampage speakers installed by the previous owner. :o
     
  19. 04

    04 Guest

    :rofl:

    I don't think thats the rampage hes talking about man!
     
  20. twistid

    twistid Banged By Super Models Moderator

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    audiovox rocks
     
  21. TenSteel

    TenSteel Ted Cruz suicide hotline OT Supporter

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    042801, I agree with you for the most part. Tube amps perform better than SS's when it comes to clipping, since tube amps clip with even order harmonics instead of odd-order harmonics, which sound nastier by comparison.

    Anyways, tube amps don't necessarily sound "better" than SS ... it's just more of a different sound, IMO. Whether you want to call it "warm," "fuzzy," "smooth," etc., there are lots of people that just prefer the different sound of tubes.

    The one place I think tube amps are beat is when it comes to bass. Tube amps tend to be somewhat laid back with bass, lacking that needed bass "slam" (you don't see any subwoofer amps that are tubes, do you? :). My dream would be to have a nice speaker system that's actively crossed over and biamped with tube amps and solid state amps, powering the mids and highs and woofers, respectively. The best of both worlds! (Costly as hell, though.) :o
     
  22. Drunk Bastard Audio

    Drunk Bastard Audio New Member

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    tube amps are solely for sq...that's why they "suck" in a setup wanting good bass.....if your going to use tube amps...stick them on your front stage....stick with a monoblock(s) for subs.
     
  23. 04

    04 Guest

    I guess you could put it that way. You arent going to get great power output or good efficiency out of any tube based amplifier.

    A monoblock is an amplifier that only has one channel. They make monoblock tube amplifiers IIRC. You want to use a class A/B transistor based amplifier of decent power for your subwoofers. Or you can use a Class D, or any of the "new classes"
     
  24. M-1000

    M-1000 COME FLY AWAY

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    i can hear two tones, the second coming about 8 seconds into the track
     
  25. 04

    04 Guest

    The second tone you hear is actually the first tone, with a harmonic added to it.
     

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