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  1. #1

    Best and cheapest way to distribute audio


    I want to connect 10 speakers to an ampifier, each speaker should be around 40 watts.

    What is the best way to do this?


  2. #2
    What are you doing? What kind of program? All in the same room or what? All the same kind of speakers? Purpose?

    In an office situation, the usual method is to go with a 70-volt system. However, a 40-watt per speaker benchmark suggests something different. Please to clarify.

  3. #3
    Okay heres a rough idea of the room sizes, I don't have the exact measurements.

    Basically I need to distribute audio to two large classrooms, the classrooms will have about 250-300 people in them.

    Classroom one will have about 75 students and classroom two will have 225 students.

    The teacher will be in classroom one. I need a mixer to hook up all my microphones, and also an amplifier to send the sound to the speakers.

    I don't know how much power I need thats why I need some help deciding, also I want to use one amplifier to distribute sound to all the speakers.

    I would also like to control which speaker stays on and which speaker stays off centrally, and it would be great to have volume control on the speaker itself or on a device which I could control centrally.

    I hope this has helped you understand my situation.

  4. #4
    Ok. The standard way of doing this is with a 70-volt system. You get an amp that puts out 70V (that spec refers to maximum output, sinewave) and you get speakers with 70V transformers in them. This kind of system works a lot like a 120V AC circuit; you send power out everywhere and tap off as much power as you need at each speaker.

    This means you are not using 8-ohm speakers, unless you attach external transformers to adapt them to a 70V line. Some of the major manufacuterers - bogen, biamp, electrovoice ("sound system bible") have information on 70V systems online.

    It is impossible to know how much power you need without knowing the sensitivity of the speakers. Some speakers take 100 times as much power as other speakers to make a given amount of noise. With all the variables, we'll just have to guess.

    I would very strongly recommend getting two 60-watt amps. You want to be able to control the sound level in each room, but "downstream" control (a level control in the speaker line, after the amp) throws away a great deal of power. You should have a mixer/amp in Classroom A, like maybe a TOA A-706, and then connect its auxiliary output to a power amp for classroom B, like a TOA P-906MK2. (These are not product endorsements, just examples. Bogen, Soundolier, Biamp, Crown and many others make similar units.) Use the knobs on the amps to control the level in each room.

  5. #5
    Oh, you'll note that I ignored your "40 watt per speaker" spec. If you're just doing voice, nothing challenging, that's way overkill. You do not need 400 watts total, unless your classes are going to be listening to rock.

  6. #6
    Thanks karl, I appreciate your help.

    I just wanted to know what is the best type of wiring to use on speakers that are running on a 70V line?

  7. #7
    Well, that's the other nice thing about 70V - you can just use 18ga. and go as far as you want with minimal line loss. At least at the power level we're talking about.

    You're running the wire above a ceiling, right? You will probably have to use P-rated cable, which does not burn or give of toxic fumes in a fire. Be glad only 18 ga. is required; it's stiff, heavy and expensive. 12ga. would be a nightmare.


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