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Audio Amplifier

Updated on October 30, 2014

Why Do I Need An Audio Amplifier?

The audio amplifier is the driving force of any audio system.

In this day and age, most households have some type of Audio/Video system in use. There are many, many different styles and configurations. An audio amplifier can be used in a home system or in a professional setting. Most home systems use receivers to hook up their audio/video systems to the speakers.

So, what is an audio amplifier? An amplifier is an electronic device that takes the low level audio signal from a source (pre-amplifier, radio, cd player, phonograph, cable/satellite tv, etc) and increases its amplitude to drive the speakers. The speakers change the electrical signal into the music you hear. Amplifiers may consist of vacuum tubes, such as depicted in this image from tubesound.comwp-contentuploads201203rock-o, or the modern solid-state circuitry. Although some professionals prefer the ambiance of the tube sound, the solid-state circuitry is preferred for the better frequency response, lower distortion, and better signal to noise ratio.

Three things to consider when buying power amplifiers is:

1. Power Output. Watts or kilowatts are used to measure the power output. Speakers come with suggested power amplified ratings. A good rule of thumb would be to obtain a power amplifier that distributes in the upper range of the recommended wattage.

2. Efficiency. This is the ratio of signal power output to total power input. It is shown as a percentage.

3. Distortion. This measures how accurate the output wave form is compared to the input wave form. For better sound, the distortion should be on the lower percentage range - the lower the distortion, the better the sound. This is also measured in percentage.

A home system audio amplifier is commonly referred to as a component stereo audio amplifier or a receiver. There are many brands from which to choose. Home component amplifiers can accommodate from a couple of sources to several sources. These systems have a variety of input and output terminals in the back panel for input sources and speaker configurations. These systems also come in a wide variety of amplification power to suit your particular needs.

A professional audio amplifier can be a unit that only accepts one input, amplifies the signal, and distributes it to the loudspeakers. It will have a minimum of controls on the front panel consisting of a variation of on/off switch, output meters, and range controls.

A professional audio amplifier can also accept several inputs or come with cd/dvd players, equalization, key change, sound effects, and much more.

There are also many configurations of systems on the market for professional musicians. You have the choice of many brands of a single component or a full system with matching components.

A widely popular form of music is common to both home audio/video system and professional systems. This is Karaoke. Karaoke is enjoyed by family and friends at home, clubs, restaurants, live stage, etc party scenarios. It is also one of the most popular forms of entertainment in the live music genre. People of all ages enjoy the ability to sing a song with a professional sound backing them up. Professionals also use the karaoke format in their live performances. Many restaurants and clubs feature karaoke shows with hosts, usually called karaoke jockeys, or kj's. Disc jockeys, or dj's, may also use karaoke in their shows.

The main component of karaoke is a good sound system that also incorporates video to produce the words on screen for the singers. In light of this, I am going to concentrate on karaoke audio systems that incorporate the audio amplifier.

VOCOPRO PA-PRO TRIO Portable Karaoke System
VOCOPRO PA-PRO TRIO Portable Karaoke System

VOCOPRO PA-PRO TRIO Portable Karaoke System

Ready To Go Professional?

If you are looking for a professional audio amplifier system ready for you to plug in your music source (live, karaoke, audio, vocal), you need to check out the VOCOPRO PA-PRO TRIO Portable Karaoke System. All this system needs is your touch to create excitement in any venue.

The PA-Pro 900 puts out an awesome 450w x 450w into 4 ohms. It gives you 6 channels (4 each Mic/Line 1/4 inch and XLR and 2 stereo 1/4 inch L/R, RCA L/R, and 1/8 inch (laptop, mp3)) inputs. All 6 channels have individual level, monitor, DSP rev/aux, high, mid, and low adjustments. You have RCA L/R record out jacks available. Microphone channels 1-4 include a compressor with DSP reverb, echo, and hiss filter effects control. Your singers will be impressed with the quality of their vocal sound coming out of your system! This audio amplifier is dual mode that gives you a choice to send output in mono+ monitor or stereo modes. Built in is a dual 7 band graphic equalizer to adjust your main and monitor output sound. Also included is +48v phantom power capability.

This unit comes with 4 each Vocopro UHF Modules/Handheld Microphones already installed.

Included in the front panel, is the SDR-3 digital recorder module that captures audio directly to SD card in Mp3 format. You can use SD cards up to 1 GB. This SDR-3 can be used as your own personal recording studio, or to record live performances of your singers for playback fun, or even play previous recorded audio/video presentations. With a large record volume control and LED meter you are guaranteed a precise recording level.

And to produce the great sound of this party system are 2 each VX-12 500w 2-way 12 inch professional speakers. Matched up with the PA-Pro 900, these speakers put out awesome crisp clear music and outstanding professional quality vocals that will please both the audience and the performer. The VX-12s come with built in side handles for easy transport. These speakers are fairly light at approximately 20 lbs each and are stand mount ready for easy placement.

Included are 2 each 1/4 inch professional speaker cables to connect your audio amplifier to the speakers.

MUSYSIC Professional 2000 Watts Complete PA System
MUSYSIC Professional 2000 Watts Complete PA System

MUSYSIC Professional 2000 Watts Complete PA System

Looking For That Professional System For Less

Are you ready to go professional, but are looking for a leaner priced system? Here is one I found that should fit your bill. The MUSYSIC Professional 2000 Watts Complete PA System has everything you need to create that party atmosphere or vocal presentation in a club, church, or outdoor setting. This is a complete audio amplifier system that only needs you to hook up to it with whatever venue you prefer. It comes with the MU-P6MX 6 channel mixer with 2000w power amp, MU-202 VHF dual microphones, 2 each Gemini RS-310 10 inch 2 way 640w ABS passive speakers, 2 speaker stands, and 2 each 25 ft speaker cables. All you need is a music source!

The MUSYSIC MU-P6MX is a 6 channel slide mixer packing a built in 2 bus 2000w peak/ 500w rms power amplifier with 5 band equalizer. The six channels have XLR and balanced line inputs for high signal integrity. It incorporates master mix output and REC output, separate master mix outputs,1 aux send per channel for external effects and monitoring, headphone output jack, mic preamp with +48V phantom power, great dynamic range, 2-band EQ and Peak LEDs on all channels, 5 segment bargraph meters, and USB/SD slot for MP3 direct play. This audio amplifier weighs approximately 16 lbs.

The MUSYSIC MU-V202 consists of 2 handheld metal VHF microphones with a 2 channel receiver with individual volume control for each microphone. The audio output is 1/4 inch unbalanced with receiver range at approximately 120 feet. The dynamic microphones use 2 x AA batteries for power. This microphone system uses an advanced technology called SMT (Surface Mounted Technology) that equates to a very high quality and reliable system.

The speaker system is comprised of 2 Gemini RS-310 10 in 2 way high power 640w passive speakers. These speakers come with 10 in woofer, 2 in voice coil, with pure titanium compression driver with 1-3/8 in coil, and wide dispersion horn design for great sound quality and versatility. Built with ABS impact resistant nylon fiber, this speaker is lightweight and compact. 2 each 1/4 in to Speakon cables are included to connect to Speakon Input and Output connectors. These speakers come stand mount ready and will sit perfectly on the 2 heavy duty stands included.

So, take a look and see if this awesome audio amplifier system is suited for all your audio needs.

Peavey CS2000 - 2000 Watt Power Amplifier
Peavey CS2000 - 2000 Watt Power Amplifier

Peavey CS2000 - 2000 Watt Power Amplifier

Light-Weight But Powerful

I used the Peavey XR600F 2x200w Powered Mixer powering a set of Peavey 15 inch Scorpion speakers in my professional Karaoke shows for 7 years. I consistently performed 5 to 7 nights per week. This audio amplifier system had plenty of sound for bar, restaurant, indoor and outdoor private parties. I still have this powerhouse dinosaur for my pleasure and personal get-togethers.

But if you are just looking for an audio amplifier to update or add to your system, the Peavey CS2000 - 2000 Watt Power Amplifier from Amazon is a great unit. Peavey is known worldwide as a leader in the power amplifier market. They came out with the CS Series in the 1970s with the Peavey CS800. Since then, they have built on the original innovations. Peavey includes their exclusive DDT compression/anti-clipping protection. This innovative circuitry protects against frequencies that can damage loudspeakers, improper loads, shorts, high temperatures, and of course, those nasty abrupt levels when you turn on the system.

Some features of the Peavey CS2000 include: 1075w (rms) per channel at 2 ohms, 760w (rms) per channel at 4 ohms, 495w (rms) per channel at 8 ohms, and 2150w (rms) per channel at 4 ohms bridged. This audio amplifier weighs approximately 36 lbs and requires 2 rack spaces for easy addition to your system rack. It includes two temperature dependent dual speed fans keeping the unit cool even in trying conditions. This rugged unit is very simple. The back panel includes, fuse, power cord plug in, A and B XLR/TRS combo jack inputs, and A and B 2 x binding posts/2 x NL4 Speakon Outputs. The front panel includes Power on/off switch and A/B gain control - that's it!

You can also check out the full CS Series by Peavey.

VOCOPRO PA-PRO-900 Portable Karaoke System
VOCOPRO PA-PRO-900 Portable Karaoke System

VOCOPRO PA-PRO-900 Portable Karaoke System

Powerhouse Audio Amplifier

So you already have a source for your music (laptop, blueray dvd player, karaoke player, etc), and microphones and speakers, but you would like to step it up a bit for professional sound. This Vocopro PA-Pro-900 Portable Karaoke System audio amplifier from Amazon has what it takes and more. I have friends that are karaoke kj's that use this system, and it is a workhorse. It has all the bells and whistles you could want and even some you really haven't thought about - because the extras are not included in other systems. This amplifier makes you look professional even if you are not, and makes yourself or guests sound like they are on a professional stage.

The Pro-900 puts out an awesome 450w x 450w into 4 ohms. It gives you 6 channels (4 each Mic/Line 1/4 inch and XLR and 2 stereo 1/4 inch L/R, RCA L/R, and 1/8 inch (laptop, mp3)) inputs. All 6 channels have individual level, monitor, DSP rev/aux, high, mid, and low adjustments. You have RCA L/R record out jacks available. Microphone channels 1-4 include a compressor with DSP reverb, echo, and hiss filter effects control. Your singers will be impressed with the quality of their vocal sound coming out of your system! The amplifier is dual mode that gives you a choice to send output in mono+ monitor or stereo modes. Built in is a dual 7 band graphic equalizer to adjust your main and monitor output sound. Also included is +48v phantom power capability. This unit comes with 4 UHF wireless mic module ports. Also included in the front panel, is an expansion port for easy addition of an optional digital SD recorder module. This can be used as your own personal recording studio, or to record live performances of your singers for playback fun, or even play previous recorded audio/video presentations. Both the SD recorder module and up to 4 UHF microphones and modules are optional.

You have to check this audio amplifier out yourself to believe all the goodies included for ease of setting up your sound. Vocopro is a leader in the karaoke industry, so you know that this system is built to be a vocalist's dream.

VocoPro VP-600 PRO 2 Space 600W Professional Power Amplifier
VocoPro VP-600 PRO 2 Space 600W Professional Power Amplifier

VocoPro VP-600 PRO 2 Space 600W Professional Power Amplifier

Great For Home or Small Venue System

This VocoPro VP-600 Pro 600 watt Professional Power Amplifier from Amazon is very simple to use at a great price. You can use it for home amplification or on the road in a professional setting. It only takes up 2 rack spaces if you want to put it in a road case or an amplifier rack. If you want to use it at home, take the rack mounts off and it fits in perfectly with your audio system. The front face is comprised of five indicator lights (Peak - Channel A/Bridge, Mono/Bridge, Peak - Channel B, Protect, and Power), two control knobs (Channel A/Bridge, and Channel B), and the Power On/Off switch. The back panel is comprised of AC input (cord), Speaker connections (Stereo 300w per channel into 4 Ohms or 600w Mono/Bridged into 8 Ohms), A/B balanced XLR inputs, A or Mono/B 1/4 inch inputs, Stereo/Mono/Bridge switch, and fan. That's it!

This audio amplifier puts out a clear signal with a less than 100dB signal to noise ratio. Worried about system failure? The VocoPro VP-600 has a built in five way protection system to alleviate that problem. It puts out 300w x 300w RMS and 600w x 600w Max into 4 Ohms stereo, or 600w Mono/Bridged into 8 Ohms. Total Harmonic Distortion is rated at 0.05 percent, Frequency response is 20Hz-20kHz, and Input Sensitivity is rated at +4dB. It weighs approximately 30 pounds.

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      Eddie Widner 3 years ago from Indio, California

      @victor1966: The MU-P6MX does not come with bluetooth capability, only usb, sd. I do not know if there is a way to add on this capability.

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      victor1966 3 years ago

      Can you add Bluetooth to pa system mu-p6mx please advise