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Audio Amplifier

Audio Amplifier

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Published by: anumarshad on Jan 10, 2010
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Audio amplifier
audio amplifier
is anelectronic amplifier that amplifies low-power audiosignals  (signals composed primarily of frequencies between 20hertzto 20,000 hertz), the humanrange of hearing) to a level suitable for drivingloudspeakersand is the final stage in atypical audio playback chain.The preceding stages in such a chain are low power audio amplifiers which perform taskslike pre-amplification, equalization,tone control,mixing/effects, or audio sources like record players, CD players, andcassette players. Most audio amplifiers require these low- level inputs to adhere toline levels.While the input signal to an audio amplifier may measure only a few hundredmicrowatts,its output may be tens, hundreds, or thousands of watts.
The audio amplifier was invented in 1909 byLee De Forestwhen he invented the triodevacuum tube. Thetriodewas a three terminal device with a control grid that can modulate the flow of electrons from the filament to the plate. The triodevacuum amplifier wasused to make the firstAM radio.Early audio amplifiers were based on vacuum tubes (also known as
), and some of these achieved notably high quality (e.g., theWilliamson amplifier of 1947-9). Mostmodern audio amplifiers are based on solid state devices (transistorssuch asBJTs, FETs andMOSFETs), but there are still some who prefer tube-based amplifiers, due to a perceived 'warmer'valve sound.Audio amplifiers based on transistors became practicalwith the wide availability of inexpensive transistors in the late 1960s.
Design parameters
Key design parameters for audio amplifiers arefrequency response,gain,noise, and distortion. These are interdependent; increasing gain often leads to undesirable increasesin noise and distortion. Whilenegative feedback actually reduces the gain, it also reducesdistortion. Most audio amplifiers are linear amplifiers operating inclass AB.
Filters and preamplifiers
Historically, the majority of commercial audio preamplifiersmade had complex filter circuits for equalization and tone adjustment, due to the far from ideal quality of recordings, playback technology, and speakers of the day.Using today's high quality (often digital) source material, speakers, etc., such filter circuits are usually not needed. Audiophiles generally agree that filter circuits are to be

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