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How many watts do I need?


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I don't think watts should even be a major consideration. What I have found is that an amp either has synergy and is a "match" for your speakers.......or it isn't.

I have run into more amps that simply sound like crap with Klipsch speakers, than ones that sound good or REALLY good with them.

You need to find the amps that sound RIGHT to you and are a match for your speakers.

Don't worry about watts.

I think you will find the higher in watts you go, the less compatible the amps will get by the numbers. Most lower wattage amps will sound better with cornwalls.

Try a few different ones and see if you agree.


Here is a quote from a friend who builds some nice gear.

I think this could also say this is not a reflection on the speaker but the mating.

The amplifier and speaker form a system. There is an optimal value of output impedance for critical damping. A higher output impedance than required for critical results in overly full, slow, sloppy bass - underdamped. A lower output impedance than required for critical results in overdamped speakers - fast, controlled, but thin and unnatural. ...and here is my issue - speakers designed for tube amps should be used with tube amps. However, when solid state came along, output impedance dropped dramatically. Speaker designers had no choice but to accommodate the new amplifiers as they were 99% of the market. When you use a tube amplifier with a high output impedance on a speaker designed for low output impedance transistors, of course it has "flabby" bass... this is no reflection on the amplifier, but a reflection on the mating!
Edited by seti
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So I just got my hands on two 1980s Cornwall IIs. I absolutely love them! unfortunately I am completely new to running speakers. Right now I am scared to run the amp I have for an extended period of time. these speakers are two precious to take a chance on. The amp I am using is a 110 watt which I am sure is sub par. I need to know the minimum amount of watts to power one cornwall II... and I would also like to know the recommended amount of wattage.

Any help would be much appreciated!


Hey Awesome,

Just substitute watts for dollars, and you have your answer...


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  • 2 months later...

Many a speaker builder will state tube amp friendly to mean 94db and above efficiency. I think most SET buyers are using speakers, single driver, horn loaded etc that are 96db and above and generally pair with amps of 1watt to 3watts or 8-12watts depending of cost/ and circuit choices. Most here have suggested that 30watts will give you all the dynamic head you could ask for and others have stated that lower power esp with Klipsch speakers provide room filling sound… it’s a personal choice more than anything. On my own speakers I run aware from .75watt to 100watts tubed and all are incredible pleasing. The 2 I most frequent in the fleewatt do to its warmth and the 8watt due to overall balance. (No matter what you choice… make sure its quite).

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  • 7 years later...

You do realize that this thread is 7 years old, right?


Welcome to the Forum!  You have some very nice speakers, and they're not hard to drive.  There are many amplifiers that will match well with them; it just depends on your budget.

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On 5/31/2021 at 5:18 PM, rican1965 said:

Ok i have cornwall iv and forte iv what integrated amp will run those speakers with ease not tube but integrated amp.any advise will help me to find the right amp



Holy necropost, Batman!


Any amp with clean power will run your speakers.

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