Built-in Amps for PC's

krupted

krupted

New Member
#1
especially now that windows has built-in surround support, and 600w+ power supplies are cheap, how about installing small car amplifiers inside pc cases, and having speaker terminals on the back?

i thought it would be a great thing to add into HTPC's, because you dont need a receiver to get surround sound. all you would need is a couple small car amps, depending on how many speakers you want. you could use a small 4-channel to get the front 3, and use powered rears and subs for the full surround. or add another 2channel amp for the rears, but it may get too cramped inside.

Anyone hear of people doing this? the only concern i see is the size limitations. definately would have to use at least full-size atx cases to squeeze it all in there, and some really strong fans to keep it cool when its turned up. a 700w psu would power a nice dual-core rig with a mild video card and that car amp with a fair amount of ease i would think. this wouldnt be for huge loud speakers of course, but i think with a couple sets of 6.5" components for the fronts and coaxials for the center you could make a great sounding system, with it all included in one box. it would make things very simple for the end user- no stereo to be turned on, no settings to worry about just plug and play.
 
K

Kane17

New Member
#2
That would be nice.

I remember a long time ago, several sound cards I had did have amps in them..not much but about 5-10 watts per side was enough to make good sound through decent speakers.

Only problem was the stinking 1/8" stereo output. Great for those cheap passive computer speakers but it really DID get in the way of the cards true potential. I didn't like converting the stereo 1/8" cable into 4 lines so I never did it. I now do send one of my outputs to a home theatre receiver now, but It definately WOULD be nice if I could eliminate that altogether and just have the amp inside the computer.

I honestly think it would be better for OEM and embedded type cases since it would be difficult to decide where free areas of the case may be.


Though, there could be potential to just keep them in the 5 1/4" Drive bays but then your outputs would be on the front of your PC which might get messy and inconvenient...I'd prefer them on the back ...but on the other hand the amp could just include a small "riser" card that just linked the amp to the outputs on the back where the expansion slots are....


Say, it probably wouldn't be that hard to invent....think it would sell??
 
krupted

krupted

New Member
#3
about time someone took interest in this interesting thread :)

i think you could fit this pioneer into a regular mid-sized atx case with little mod. it would fit right on the case door and hover above the pci cards and such. the dimensions are about 12"x12"x2" so it should fit, if nothing else im sure there are plenty of htpc cases that would accomodate it one way or another.

that would run a set of pioneer 6.5" component speakers for the fronts, and a pair of 5" components for the center speaker. the speakers are easily made of mdf wood, and partsexpress.com has some nice gear to finish them off with.

all in all, you could probably build a complete system for $700-900, but it would be just 4 peices in all, with the option to add a powered sub and powered rear's if you want the full 5.1 surround.

i would image with 40w rms to each front component set would rock pretty good, especially with pioneer gear- plus the center channel would be almost as loud as the two fronts. the speaker enclosures would be built oversized, tall and skinny but deep. lots of volume space on the inside to enhance the bass from those little speakers.

not sure if i would want to sell these though. i find as with most my projects, they are very useful but not economical to sell.
 
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krupted

krupted

New Member
#5
not sure what the heck they are trying to do with that. its a class D amp rated for 35watts. they dont say if thats rms or max, and besides that, class D amps are not ideal for full-range speakers. not sure how much benifit you would get with a 35w sub either, and it doesnt say if that can be bridged to 70wx1.

no way it would be as good as what im suggesting:D
 
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Kane17

New Member
#6
You know what, it might be economical if you sold it as Case + Large PSU + Built in Amp all as a combo thing. That way people wouldn't have to take the effort to mod their own cases and an adequate PSU would be included.

I think you could even do it without even manufacturing anything if you needed.
 
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Kane17

New Member
#7
Hey how would you plan on powering this? Do car amps just run off of a 12v line? I'm not sure...I dont even have a radio in my car...eek

But if so..could you just run tap into the 12 v lines already in the psu cable?
 
krupted

krupted

New Member
#8
you pretty much answered you own questions. plus i already stated the answers above. a good strong 600w or 700w psu would run an entire htpc plus car amp/speakers no problem i would think. the 12v rails on psu's will run car electronics as long as there are ample amps. and yes, of course if i did sell any of these it would be all-inclusive. thats really the point, you get one box that does windows, 3-channel surround amplification and tunes tv of course. then, two front speakers and one center is all you need and you could get the 4-piece package for under a grand.

the rear's can be added later or never, many times rear speakers just distort the sound image more then anything anyway. and of course if they wanted a subwoofer that can be added later too, with a powered sub of course. you will never get a subwoofer amp inside a pc case, and even if you did the temps would be too great.
 
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Kane17

New Member
#9
krupted said:
the rear's can be added later or never, many times rear speakers just distort the sound image more then anything anyway. and of course if they wanted a subwoofer that can be added later too, with a powered sub of course. you will never get a subwoofer amp inside a pc case, and even if you did the temps would be too great.

Yea I didn't like having rear speakers so much anyways. I tried an all in one surround + subwoofer package once and I hated the rears anyways.

Positioning them ****ed, They came with tripods but they got in the way. I have surround again but my "rear" speakers are just farther out along the wall. My pc is in the corner. I find it does add some slight spacial feel to it when some 3d sound app calls for it but the audio waves are all flowing in the same direction and i think thats the issue so the sound isn't working against itself...though I really haven't looked into it so I might just be talking out my arse on that issue.


Anyways, I gave the 4 satelites and sub to a friend and guess what...he doesn't even connect the rears..haha so true, rear speakers would not be a major issue.
 
krupted

krupted

New Member
#10
having the soundwaves working against eachother is exactly why i tend to dislike surround speakers as well. most people dont think about sound feilds, many tend to think more is better and thats it.

however, vista does have an automatic room calibration. it uses any old microphone (good ones work better), you just put the mic right where your sitting, and windows runs test tones on all the speakers and adjusts the levels and delays accordingly. this minimizes the distortion and balances out the sound feild. i havent tried it but it seems promising.
 
O

ol' man

workin fingas to the bone
#13
I meant don't amps need a ton off juice (electricity). I can just see the first bump totally shutting down the PC.
 
krupted

krupted

New Member
#14
well that is my concern, but these are not subwoofers or anything, plus the max fuse rating on the amp is almost met fully by a 6-700w power supply- meaning it should be fine. most amps put about double the real usage in for a fuse, so if this amp has a 40a fuse in it, the amp will likely never really draw over 20a. but it is really the only concern i would have, because im not sure how well computer power supplies take shap current spikes. pretty much the reason i posted this thread at all i guess... otherwise most people seem more then satisfied with their proprietary creative amplified surround kit;)
 

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