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Don McPhee

Klipschorn -What is a safe minimum wattage requirement

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9 hours ago, guf said:

realizing that I listen comfortably 75-80 average dbs.

 

What kind of music do you listen to?  If it is pre-distorted like some rock and metal, that could be a contributing factor.  "Loudness" is a perceptual phenomenon (unlike SPL, which is "objective").   Distorted sound can sound both louder and more unpleasant.  

 

9 hours ago, guf said:

. I have been pushing it to see if I can listen louder and what my amps are capable of. I also have a powered sub. All of my amps I can average between 85-90 and it’s too loudLess than 8 feet away.

 

Don Keel Jr., writing for Klipsch, identified 85 dB as "Medium Level," 90, 95 and 100 were called "Loud,"  105 and 110 "Very Loud," and 115 "Too Damn Loud."   At less than 8 feet away, it seems like you have a smallish room.  Is that correct?  THX recommends a top peak level of about 98 dB for a 3,000 cu. ft. room, because it sounds like (due to early reflections) their full scale level of 105 dB peaks (through the main speakers) in a commercial cinema.

 

9 hours ago, guf said:

On another forum some amp builder is telling me it’s because of distortion not loudness. My best experiences, most engaging, are when I’m listening at lower volumes, and really present with the music

 

I have spent many happy hours listening to very quiet music when working on "all nighters" in college, due to an insomniac with acute hearing down the hall.  As you said, it can be quite engaging.  I remember putting my head against the grille cloth, enjoying the singularly distortion free, and early reflection free sound (that eliminated the room, which was too live).   I think the amp builder on the other forum could possibly be right.  If the sound is distorted, it can sound much louder than an SPL level might indicate.  Distortion in this case could be any of your components, including the room

 

I know there are a ton of variables other than power when comparing amps, but, all in all, I'm with Emile ... my more powerful amplifiers almost always make my Klipschorns sound more refined and detailed -- the instruments are there, whether the playback is loud or soft -- all except a Yamaha that sounds a bit "hard."  So, my 80, and 150 w.p.c. amps sound more detailed than my 16, 20, 40 w.p.c. amps, but the Yamaha, at 135 w.p.c. is the worst, due to a little hardness.

 

P.S.  I see you are from San Francisco.  Do they still have "Music 'till Dawn" on one of the classical stations (either KKHI or KDFC).  That got me through a BA and an MA.  Hopefully they still have two classical stations!  And do they still have KJAZ, for a while the only jazz station that knew what it was?   I think the former mayor of Oakland, Lionel Wilson, owned it for a while.  

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Without looking it up, I believe the threshold for needing hearing protection in the workplace is in the low to mid eighties...

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55 minutes ago, glens said:

Without looking it up, I believe the threshold for needing hearing protection in the workplace is in the low to mid eighties...

 

I believe that is mostly to err on the side of caution, providing a conservative measurement, partly to allow for non-detail oriented employers..  Here are OSHA's standards.  All are time related.  A workplace must have a hearing protection program if workers are exposed to 85 dBA for 8 Hours.  That's dBA, SLOW, not dBC Slow or Fast; both of the latter will produce higher readings by picking up bass sounds louder, and, with Fast, respond more sensitively to peaks.  I believe that music is almost always measured in dBC, Fast or Slow.  At least, I use C, Fast for music.

 

Here are OSHA's standards:

image.png.0358951f86930429ee820aadad2a06e4.png

 

Note that:

  1. The chart permits 90 dBA for 8 hours
  2. "    "   "    "    "     "    100 dBA for 2 hours
  3. "    "   "    "    "     "     115 dBA for 1/4 hour

 

Rock/Metal, etc are potentially more damaging than orchestral music, because while a orchestra might peak at 115 dBC in a concert hall, once in a while, for extremely brief period (ms), certain hard rock selections might be at more or less 100 dBC for a fairly long time, with longer peaks than an orchestra would produce at 105, 110, 115dBC.  That's why those guys wear ear plugs.

 

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Some really interesting info from your responses...Thank you. For now I decided to go with Quicksilver. I found a QS Integrated like new on USAudio

and decided to try it out. I have heard nothing but rave reviews and not a bad word anywhere regarding QS, the man that owns it and the Integrated amp.

It puts out 20wpc so I'm definitely covered in those moments where I want to rock hard!! I'm very anxious to give the Integrated a spin as I have never had an amp with EL84's

though I have been told to expect a sweet midrange with plenty bottom end and smooth highs.

By the way...after waiting what seems like 6 months, LOL... I finally picked up my Klipschorns last night. To say the least I am elated. They are almost like new and sound amazing. I get the QS Integrated on Monday and will hook her up and I think I am going to listen to music for the next few months before I consider a new crossover from Dean and upgrading to mid driver to 55G and tweeter to 120.

 

Cheers all!!!

 

Don

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 Typically a pair of EL84/6BQ5 will make about 17 watts in PP much less single ended. Twenty watts would be a stretch for a pair in PP. Never the less 17 watts a side should be plenty of power. The next real jump up in power would be a pair of EL34 per side which will yield about 36 watts, many companies claim 40 but it is not the case.

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34 minutes ago, moray james said:

 Typically a pair of EL84/6BQ5 will make about 17 watts in PP much less single ended. Twenty watts would be a stretch for a pair in PP. Never the less 17 watts a side should be plenty of power. The next real jump up in power would be a pair of EL34 per side which will yield about 36 watts, many companies claim 40 but it is not the case.

Don't know much about circuits but he runs 8 EL84's, 4 per side and with however he puts it together Im told it is a solid 20wpc.

 

CheersDon

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On 6/19/2019 at 11:34 PM, Don McPhee said:

Let me clarify with specifics....I am asking..How small of an amp can I use and still have plenty of headroom without clipping or distortion.

My Room is 15x27...8ft ceilings with carpeting however I will be changing flooring to laminate or vinyl planks....Any suggestions in the solid state arena under $3K?


Cheers


Don

 

Your room is slightly smaller than mine, similar proportions. I would caution you against changing the flooring from carpet to laminate or vinyl planks. I've done a lot of acoustical experimentation with my room over the years (decades actually) and IMHO the room will be way too reverberant with Khorns. I have a thread in the Architectural section that details the history of the room including experimentation with floor coverings.

 

FWIW the SET 2A3 amps I used always came up short on the bass. And if I played anything that required loud sustained output (like Rock, say Aerosmith) the SET amps would eventually just give up, become saturated until given a break for a few seconds.

 

I used 50w Luxman push/pull triodes (MB3045) for most of the 35+ years in that room. Also some Crown (PSA2/275w/ch), McIntosh MC7205 (200w/ch). I recently had a McIntosh MA5300 integrated in there which sounded very nice but lacked a lot of connectivity I need. At the moment I've settled on NAD M32 (and previously had a NAD C390DD). I replaced the Khorns with Danley SH50 (100dB/w/m) about 6 years ago. The MA5300 meters showed about 20w/ch peak when the system was pretty cranked (110dB listening position).

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On 6/19/2019 at 11:34 PM, Don McPhee said:

Let me clarify with specifics....I am asking..How small of an amp can I use and still have plenty of headroom without clipping or distortion.

My Room is 15x27...8ft ceilings with carpeting however I will be changing flooring to laminate or vinyl planks. I listen to mostly 70-80's rock and some newer rock and a bit of blues. My listening level is upper/moderate and at times I like to crank it but still leave the paint on the walls. Speakers will sit approx. 15 ft apart and Listening area 14-15 feet from each speaker.

I have had a Primaluna Dialogue Integrated HP most recently with Goldenear Tritons. For the Khorns I have been considering a Scott 299C which I own but needs to go in for servicing and repair......Im really thinking of going this route first and see how everything unravels..Maybe I have a diamond in the rough????...Also looking at a Leben CS-300SX which is rated at 12w per. Ch. and Luxman SQ-Ni50 at 10w per Ch and Line Magnetic 211 ia which can switch between Ultralinear and Triode. 32 wpc Ultralinear and 15 wpc Triode. I guess I should consider solid state though I do love the warmth and beautiful midrange of el34 and el84....Any suggestions in the solid state arena under $3K?


Cheers


Don

are you on concert?

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1 hour ago, Don McPhee said:

Don't know much about circuits but he runs 8 EL84's, 4 per side and with however he puts it together Im told it is a solid 20wpc.

 

CheersDon

That then is a very conservative 20 watts per channel you will be very pleased and moving to a single pair of EL34 would not be much if any of a noticeable move up in power. Looking forward to your comments. The QS are highly respected, enjoy.

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Quote " Any suggestions in the solid state arena under $3K?"

Yes the single most low noise/distortion amplifier in existence the Bemchmark AHB2 . This is a stunning amplifier. The maker is still in theoretical discussions with the top two noise measurement companies in the world about exactly how quiet it really is. At the moment the nose floor is an unbelievable minus 139 db down (nothing anywhere even comes close to this) and the builder believes it may well be lower. This number is below the capability of being physically measured and must be theoretically arrived at. You can only imagine how much lost detail this amplifier is capable of exposing. Small compact highly efficient cool running and astoundingly powerful. A pure delight. I doubt I will ever replace it.

Benchmark AHB2 2.jpg

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No minimum amp requirement with the Heritage speakers or any high efficiency home speaker.

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