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audio amplifiers for PC's

Discussion in 'Electronic Design' started by [email protected], Apr 18, 2005.

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  1. Guest

    I am looking to design a digital audio amplifier for my
    computer.My computer has a built in sound card which does not produces
    good sound effects more over i have low end 2.0 mercury speakers which
    makes the sound more worse.can any one please tell me about some sites
    where i would get complete circuit diagrams for desigining such a
    digital amplifier.
    Also any design ideas from members is welcome.But to be precise i
    want something that has great sound quality(rather must have superb
    sound quality),with some features like digital bass boost,sound
    synthesis,surround sound etc.I know with all these features the
    circuit might become expensive but if any one can help me by
    suggesting something that can include all these features and still
    economical will be really nice.
    Just to remind that i want this circuit to be placed between my
    pc and speakers i cant afford to replace either of them.
  2. On 18 Apr 2005 04:14:48 -0700, in
    well, change your soundcard to an external card, say M Audio, would be
    my first step.
    Digital audio power amps are reasonable sounding, but can produce some
    nasty aliasing. A brief search through some spec's of the IC
    manufactures, some time ago, showed that they are not up to the
    quality of reasonable designed analogue amplifier.

    The most significant advantage of a digital PA is the high efficiency.

    Try to put a 5.1 system , say 40W/channel in a small box, you can do
    it, but this would be difficult with an inefficient analogue amp,
    since you could not get rid of the heat.

    I cant/wont comment on your need for all those (stupid) effects that
    you want, I would rather listen to how the recording was originally

    Go analogue, its easier, often better,


    After the first death, there is no other.
    (Dylan Thomas)
  3. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    Why do you think a *digital* amplifier would be any better ?
    Those features aren't included in any 'digital amps chips' or chipsets
    that I know of - that needs separate DSP.

    Yourt obsession with *digital* is illogical. Class D amps are used for
    power efficiency not sound quality. The better Class D amps are getting
    close to mid / low high end range analogue audio quality now though.
    Buy a cheap 2nd hand hi-fi amp off ebay.

  4. Rich Grise

    Rich Grise Guest

    Somebody told him they're cool.

    And heck, the sound's coming out of a ditital computer, right?

  5. nope, just cooler, Analogue is "cool"


    After the first death, there is no other.
    (Dylan Thomas)
  6. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    The *digital is better* marketing myth has become so prevalent that I wonder
    how long it'll be before we have 'digital food' advertising or whatever.

    Hang on - if I eat with my fingers that makes it digital - right ? ;-)

  7. digital is like McDonalds..... efficient


    After the first death, there is no other.
    (Dylan Thomas)
  8. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    Whilst you're apparently in the UK, I can clearly see that you haven't experienced
    McDonalds in Swindon on a Sunday. I wasn't there by choice I hasten to add - but
    considering it's meant to be fast food - the service was anything but.

  9. keith

    keith Guest

    I thought it was Wendy's that went digital.
  10. Guest

    So u r suggersting that i should go for analog amplifier isnt it?
    but then why the sound card manufacturer like creative and all make
    these digital sound cards cant they provide some anolog amplifiers as
    u suggest which can be externally connected to computer.
    besides i presonally want to construct this amplifier so can u suggest
    some sites where i can get circuit diagrams for same that would be
    really helpful.
    Also if u can direct me in a particular direction for designing such a
    amplifier will be really very helpful
  11. On 18 Apr 2005 22:23:39 -0700, in
    try this link, TDA2030, probably ideal for a beginner
    or just google tda2030 pcb diy

    the 2030 has been around for decades, its simple and it works


    After the first death, there is no other.
    (Dylan Thomas)
  12. On Tue, 19 Apr 2005 01:36:14 +0100, in Pooh
    I bailed out of the UK 3 years ago, I live in a white Anadalucian
    hillside village 20KM from Cadiz, I can see the sea when I look out of
    the window. Stunning. Sure beats living inside the M25 (watford)

    The last time I ate in a fast food restaurant was in Kuala Lumpar in
    97 I think, or the one near the Science Museum in Kensington, (but
    that was work)


    After the first death, there is no other.
    (Dylan Thomas)
  13. Guest

    would you please elaborate more on such DSP's
    So how should i improve the sound quality
    as i said i want to make it at home ,so i need a design that will
    allow me to interface this circuit(amplifier)with pc's audio out and
    my speakers
  14. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    Ak ok - was going by the email addy - should have checked the IP !
    Ahhh. Watford - I understand ! I'm 'up the road' in St Albans as it happens.

    Sounds very nice where you are now.
    I'm having trouble recalling the last fast food restaurant I ate in. I suspect it was
    McDonalds in Dubai airport en rote to Mumbai in Nov 2000 IIRC ( couldn't get a direct
    flight at short notice ). That was work too.

  15. Rich Grise

    Rich Grise Guest

    I can't help but either laugh or cry when I hear about the "Organic food"
    craze - what the hell, are the rest of us eating inorganic food?

  16. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    They're only *digital* sound cards since that's how a PC stores sound ( and how it communicates with
    expansion cards ). It's not done for quality reasons. In fact most PC sound cards are of abysmal quality !
    Especially the ones that come ready integrated onto the PC motherboard.

    Check this out.

    The inputs and outputs to the sound card are mainly analogue, since they have to connect to the *real
    world*. Some provide digital I/Oconnections too for ppl who have more esoteric gear.
    Because other companies already make amplifiers far better than Creative would be likely to ! Creative are
    just a consumer manufacturer really. You won't find their sound cards in the 'platinum' list in the link

    If you want to simply assemble a kit try googling 'gainclone'. It's only a National Semiconductor IC power
    amp - but one of the better ones. Ready made pcbs are available and it works. The hi-fi 'audiophool' nuts
    are crazy over it for some reason.

    There's plenty of ways to go wrong making your own power amp. It's a veritable trap for the unwary or

    Graham ( expert power amp designer ) :)
  17. Pooh Bear

    Pooh Bear Guest

    DSPs are a veritable source of study in themselves. I've only relatively recently started using them - indeed
    for audio effects like reverb.

    Try here for a simple introduction. It's actually a very useful site that I've learnt bits from myself.

    Well.... most sound cards have really cheap and nasty amplifier chips built into them that are only intended to
    output a few watts at relatively low-fi for 'squawk boxes' and the like. Therefore an external amplifier is a
    good move.

    Analogue amplifers ( except very poor ones - like the ones on sound cards ) outperform swiching amplifiers -
    technically called Class D - that are sometimes marketed as 'digital amplifiers' though.

    Most PC speakers ( 99.99% of them ) are utter garbage too.

    The above ( about ebay ) is still the best economic advice.

  18. Guest

    Start by forgetting digital, its not what you want. Theyre much more
    complex, more money, and generally lower sound quality.

    3 options:

    1. buy a ready made home stereo amp and use it
    2. construct a pair of amps around an audio amp IC of your choice
    3. Make a very low cost but good sounding amp from power trs, and opamp
    and a few bits. Minimal cost, good sound, but no short protection.

    It depends first on how much power you want. Then on what money youve
    got. Then on whether youve got any of the parts already, eg power

    Very rough costs:
    for a 1-2 watt rms per channel discrete amp, £2
    for a 50wpc IC amp, £40 and much more work

    Bass boost is easy to add using RC in the feedback loop. The other
    gizmos, I'd forget em and concentrate on getting decent sound.

  19. dB

    dB Guest

    wrote> >

    As has already been pointed out, forget "digital", it's a silly fad.

    You also said, in your first post, that you have "low end 2.0 mercury
    speakers which makes the sound more worse."

    Just upgrading those will make it sound "more better."
  20. Jim Thompson

    Jim Thompson Guest

    So will cotton in the ears ;-)

    ...Jim Thompson
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