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Amp Meet Three - The Results

These are the results of the power and performance test conducted on the 6th June 2010 at the third Amplifier Meet in Bedford, Bedfordshire.

All power measurements are Maximum continuous output power in RMS watts* per channel, two channels driven to the threshold of clipping at 40 Hz, 1 kHz, and 10 kHz, and at loads of 8 ohm, 4 ohm and 2 ohm unless otherwise stated in the notes. Bridge power ratings are CALCULATED based on the amplifier's performance into 4R and 2R loads. 8R Bridge = 2 × 4R per channel; 4R Bridge = 2 × 2R Per channel. Inclusion of a calculated bridge rating does not necessarily mean the amp is bridgeable - PKN and Powersoft for example. "Continuous" means 5 seconds or greater - this ensured that the amplifiers were not damaged by the testing, and meant a sensible number of amplifiers could be tested in the alotted time. "Burst" (<100ms) ratings were not measured.

THD+N = Total Harmonic Distortion plus Noise and is a measure of the purity of the amplifier output as well as its noise level. It was measured at the maximum power output at various frequencies and load impedances. Anything below 1% is fine, below 0.1% is better. Obscure results sometimes appear because of distortion cancellation mechanisms.

Some amplifiers were not measured at 2R because they may have been damaged by the test. Exclusion of a 2R measurement does not mean the amplifier will not withstand 2R LOUDSPEAKER loading. Sine testing into a dummy load is considerably more demanding of an amplifier.

All tests were carried out using a Bruel & Kjaer 1023 Sine wave oscillator, HP8903A Audio distortion analyser, an HP3456A true-RMS digital voltmeter, a 8/4/2R Resistive dummy load, and a Tektronix TDS210 Digital Realtime Oscilloscope.

Distortion was not measured for the amplifiers in the bottom half of the list due to the enormous number of amplifiers on offer and the limited time available to get a reliable distortion measurement. We would welcome the opportunity to repeat these tests in a more tightly controlled environment, with more time, in our lab. Please get in touch with us if you would like to send us an amplifier to test.

Mains voltage WAS measured with a Fluke 233 true-RMS wireless display multimeter. All amplifiers were fed from the same supply, adapted according to the mains plug fitted. 32A, 16A and 13A was available, all wired into a fuse board with 16mm cable. The supply was extremely stiff, and did not sag below 238V all day. It fluctuated slightly throughout the day, but was never more than 246V.

In no particular order:

Manufacturer Model Freq 8 Ohm Performance 4 Ohm Performance 2 Ohm Performance 8R Bridge Watts (Calc) 4R Bridge Watts (Calc)
Notes
Watts THD+N Watts THD+N Watts THD+N
FFA FFA10000 40 Hz 1770   2916   4608   5832 9216
238V Mains, full power, 2R. Severe oscillation at clip, clip light operates significantly after clipping point. 10kHz sine wave severely distorted at all load impedances.
1 kHz 1596   2809       5618  
10 kHz 1431   2916       5832  
Lab Gruppen LAB1600 40 Hz 446 0.09% 804 0.30%     1608  
Mains 243.6V at 4R full power
1 kHz 432 0.64% 809 0.60%     1618  
10 kHz 435 0.80% 790 0.60%     1580  
NJD SA220 40 Hz 87 0.30% 110 0.40%     220  
100W 'slave amp'
1 kHz 83 0.10% 120 0.60%     240  
10 kHz 85 0.38% 116 0.60%     232  
Citronic SA400 40 Hz 139 0.10% 224 0.30%     448  
1 kHz 130 0.06% 215 0.07%     430  
10 kHz 133 0.14% 213 0.17%     426  
PPX 450 40 Hz 124 0.05% 224 0.20%     448  
1 kHz 126 0.08% 210 0.15%     420  
10 kHz 135 0.40% 219 0.60%     438  
PPX 900 40 Hz 306 0.12% 495 0.08%     990  
1 kHz 275 0.04% 454 0.04%     908  
10 kHz 277 0.06% 431 0.06%     862  
PPX 1200 40 Hz 435 0.80% 702 0.90%     1404  
1 kHz 416 0.08% 689 0.80%     1378  
10 kHz 405 0.07% 648 1.60%     1296  
PPX 1600 40 Hz 506 0.20% 879 0.40%     1758  
1 kHz 452 0.05% 847 0.50% 1058 1.50% 1694 2116
10 kHz 456 0.70% 832 0.70%     1664  
W Audio DAP 2100 40 Hz 701 0.07% 1176 0.70%     2352  
Not tested at 10k 4R, unlikely to have survived it.
1 kHz 662 0.30% 1139 0.60%     2278  
10 kHz 648 0.19%         0  
MC2 T2000 40 Hz 692 0.30% 1218 1.20%     2436  
Overcurrent limited at 4R after 5 secs
1 kHz 670 0.10% 1190 0.16%     2380  
10 kHz 675 0.35% 1194 0.46%     2388  
Powersoft K8 40 Hz 1891   2916       5832  
Peak Ratings due to current limiting - set to 13A mode, fed from 13A supply. No oscillation on clip. Full Bridge Class D, Unable to measure distortion. Mains did not fall below 241V, absolute bastard to set up.
1 kHz 1800   3192       6384  
10 kHz 1741   3306       6612  
PKN Controls XE-6000 40 Hz 1653   2704       5408  
250kHz Switching Frequency, output residual less than 500mv pk-pk. Excellent clipping behaviour, no oscillation on clip whatsoever. Unable to measure THD, full bridge class D. Mains did not fall below 241V
1 kHz 1625   2550       5100  
10 kHz 1922   2550       5100  
Matrix XT 800 40 Hz 234   299       598  
Mains voltage 245.3
1 kHz 238   331       662  
10 kHz 226   333       666  
Peavey CS 4080 40 Hz 1485   2162       4324  
Front panel circuit breaker repeatedly tripping during testing, even at 8R load.
1 kHz 1431   2304       4608  
10 kHz 1405   2304       4608  
Matrix 4004 EQ 40 Hz 600   1040       2080  
1 kHz 585   1018       2036  
10 kHz 588   999       1998  
Matrix XP 5000 40 Hz 1097   1954       3908  
Limiters On
1 kHz 1100   1811       3622  
10 kHz 1100   1669       3338  
W Audio DAP 1100 40 Hz 303   562       1124  
1 kHz 308   543       1086  
10 kHz 300   536       1072  
RSE PFX 1200 40 Hz 423   613       1226  
1 kHz 403   663       1326  
10 kHz 406   576       1152  
Lab Gruppen LAB1200C 40 Hz 381   653       1306  
2 of 4 Channels driven
1 kHz 374   686       1372  
10 kHz 370   630       1260  
Lab Gruppen LAB4000 40 Hz 1275   1681       3362  
Blew 2 13a fuses
1 kHz 1240   2162       4324  
10 kHz 1275   2209       4418  
QSC PL 4.0 40 Hz 1013   1819       3638  
1 kHz 1138   1936       3872  
10 kHz 1133   1892       3784  
PPX 300 40 Hz 113   182       364  
1 kHz 104   173       346  
10 kHz 104   168       336  
QSC GX5 40 Hz 570   756       1512  
1 kHz 568   798       1596  
10 kHz 561   781       1562  
QSC PL380 40 Hz 1596   2916       5832  
1 kHz 1625   2652       5304  
10 kHz 2738   3192       6384  
QSC PLX 3402 40 Hz 851   1354       2708  
Generation 1 - old version
1 kHz 841   1436       2872  
10 kHz 861   1421       2842  
QSC PLX 3602 40 Hz 759   1190       2380  
Generation 2 - New Version
1 kHz 774   1336       2672  
10 kHz 662   1552       3104  

* "RMS Watts" is technically an incorrect term: see http://www.epanorama.net/documents/audio/amplifier_power.html



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