Bi-amping vs. more watts/channel

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  • robo
    Junior Member
    • Mar 2001
    • 1

    Bi-amping vs. more watts/channel

    I was wondering what anyones opinion might be on bi-amping compared to more watts per channel. I have a B&K AVR202 combined with Energy Connoseiur C6 fronts. Currently, I have the mains bi-wired and was wondering if I would notice an inprovement if I was to swithch to bi-amping or adding an amp with more watts per channel. The B&K is listed at 105 watts/channel. If I was to bi-amp, I was thinking around 100 - 125 watts per channel. If I go the other route, I was thinking something in the neighborhood of 200 watts/ channel. Any advice/opinions would be greatly appreciated.

  • Lexman
    Super Senior Member
    • Jun 2000
    • 1777

    Robo, here's my take on it. Also welcome to the forum, I know you just signed on this week.

    The advantages of passive bi-amping. (meaning the internal crossovers are not disconnected.)

    1. Should have better dynamics at reference levels. Why? Well, if the units are built to the same quality, the seperate amp approach should have more reserve power supply.
    2. Perhaps minor difference in speaker imaging.

    Adavantages of 1 amp.
    1. Takes up less real estate.
    2. Less cables involved and electric plugs.
    3. Perhaps less cost.
    4. Won't loose much over method 1.

    Best method for great results with bi-amping, you need to active bi-amp or tri-amp. This means you have to seperate internal speaker crossovers for 2 way bi-amping or the 3 way crossovers for tri-amping.

    To trade speakers, you likely have to go back in and reconnect crossovers. Might be a little tricky. This will require more cabling as well as External crossovers to seperate your signal into the 2/3 individual highs/mids/lows. Major bucks.

    Results? Increased imaging and detail, plain and simple, as well as the dynamics for reference levels. Bottom line? The differences will be small. But when most people get to this level, they are looking for that last little bit of quality in their system. Or like Jon, just love to tweak this stuff like he does computers. lol.

    Hope this helps,



    • KennyG
      Moderator Emeritus
      • Sep 2000
      • 745

      Let me add a couple twists to Lex's thoughts (I'm more twisted anyway)
      First if you are planning to bi-amp the best way to do it bypassing the speakers internal crossovers. You'd come out of the preamp, into an electronic crossover, from that to your amps, and from that the low end amp goes directly to your woofer (better coupling means better control) The mid-high freq amp goes to an upper crossover, if it's a two way speaker, directly to the tweeter...again better control over the driver, although tweeters and midrange drivers are easily controlled.
      If your lucky enough to tri-amp a three way speaker you would run each amp directly to each speaker.
      If I were choosing between bi-amping or a single bigger amp...I'd go with the bigger amp. Bi-amping is nice, and it will sound marginally better, however there is no substitute for power, bass is deeper and better defined (read controlled here) the overall presentation is more powerful and, with a quality amp, cleaner.
      There is no substitute for horsepower...Kenny


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