Series/parallel wiring

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  • 05-03-2008, 12:07 AM
    budgetaudio76
    Series/parallel wiring
    say you have more than one unpowered sub. like 2 of them. or better yet you have 4 of them all 8 ohm resistance. and you want to connect them all with out frying your amp which can only handle 8 ohms. takes more wire than usual so make sure you have enough.

    first with 2 subs.
    connect speaker wire as usual at the amp end. take pos. wire connect it to one sub. take the neg. wire connect it to the other sub. take on speaker wire split it in two and connect positive on one sub to negative on the other sub. now your amp sees a 16 ohm load. which lowers the power output abit. but now you have 2 subs which raises out put somewhat depending on what youre using. whats that? your amp didnt fry? this is even better with four subs. this is known as series wiring.

    now with 4 subs.

    you can do this 2 ways. wire as described above. but get another speaker wire connect it to the input terminal at the first set of subs. and wire the 3rd and 4th subs in the same manner.
    now you have 2 pairs of subs wired in a series/parallel configuration which the amp will see as an 8 ohm load. this works as well with subs with stereo inputs. but with alot less wires.
    whats that? your amp still didnt fry? thats what i like to hear.


    this can be done 2 ways.
    now with the 4 ohm amp. and you have 2 8 ohm subs. wire as usual behind amp. connect as usual at first sub. connect another set of wires. and connect the other sub as usual.
    now you have 2 8 ohm subs. but since they aare wired in series. the amp sees a 4 ohm load. now loss of power. just sweet, sweet bass.

    2nd way. get two speaker wires. connect them both behind the amp. as you usually would. connect both as usual behind the subs. the amp still sees the 4 ohm load. why? this is the same as wiring in series.

    if you have a 8 ohm amp and two 4 ohm subs. wire them in parllel. and the amp sees a 8 ohm load. if you have difficulty write a diagram on paper showing what a series connection is. same for a parallel connection. now join them together.

    still having difficulty? google series parallel wiring. it will be in more detail. but will say pretty much of what you read here. with diagrams and all.
    works with full range speakers as well. my center speakers are wired in series/parallel. still not fryed. 8 ohm rated sub/sat system.

    made correction to the second paragragh from parallel to series. thanks kex. any more corrections any one can see needs to be done please say so. i didnt mean for this to be the last word in this matter.:9:
  • 05-03-2008, 11:28 AM
    Mash
    I suggest that one NEVER connect speakers in series...
    Unless, perhaps, they are POWERED speakers with high input impedances.

    An unpowered speaker cone voicecoil has a lot of inductance, so connecting voicecoils in series so that the second speaker cone voicecoil "sees" the inductance of the first speaker cone voicecoil will give you mud.... out of both. If one sub/channel is inadequate look for a better replacement sub. And a single sub will be less difficult to locate/place than locating/placing two subs because you will not have inter-sub cancellation conflicts.

    Quality always wins out over quantity.
  • 05-03-2008, 11:43 AM
    kexodusc
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by budgetaudio76

    first with 2 subs.
    connect speaker wire as usual at the amp end. take pos. wire connect it to one sub. take the neg. wire connect it to the other sub. take on speaker wire split it in two and connect positive on one sub to negative on the other sub. now your amp sees a 16 ohm load. which lowers the power output abit. but now you have 2 subs which raises out put somewhat depending on what youre using. whats that? your amp didnt fry? this is even better with four subs. this is known as parallel wiring.

    You have described series wiring here, not parallel wiring.

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by budgetaudio76
    if you have a 8 ohm amp and two 4 ohm subs. wire them in parllel. and the amp sees a 8 ohm load.

    Actually, I wouldn't advise this with an amp rated for 8 ohm loads only. Wiring two 4 ohm subs in parallel will reduce the impedance to 2 ohms, not 8 ohms, and that's likely to cause some damage.
  • 05-03-2008, 12:37 PM
    Ajani
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kexodusc
    You have described series wiring here, not parallel wiring.

    This is why I vote to keep it simple... You're less likely to confuse series with parallel and fry your amp.... 1 sub or no sub works just fine....
  • 05-03-2008, 05:41 PM
    budgetaudio76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Mash
    Unless, perhaps, they are POWERED speakers with high input impedances.

    An unpowered speaker cone voicecoil has a lot of inductance, so connecting voicecoils in series so that the second speaker cone voicecoil "sees" the inductance of the first speaker cone voicecoil will give you mud.... out of both. If one sub/channel is inadequate look for a better replacement sub. And a single sub will be less difficult to locate/place than locating/placing two subs because you will not have inter-sub cancellation conflicts.

    Quality always wins out over quantity.


    the subs in my case arent exactly for really low frequencys. more of a mid bass drivers with there own separate boxs. both connections terminate behind the amp. so no worries for the inductance from one driver to the next. i dont know about the muddiness unless you would say that paradigm monitor 9 v3 speakers sound muddy. whenever i play 5 channel stereo the sub/ sat system integrates seamlessly with the paradigms that is i dont locate the sound just from one source. sounds clean voices are as articulate as can be. bass guitar is taute and full , even when sitting front and center between main speakers. how i have them set up now the mid woofer cabs are on a tv stand with a piece of mdf on top of them and the tv on top. sounds great with no muddiness. timing between the speaker cones are as close as you can get with any speaker you can buy. a nice benefit i get is the mid bas and mid frequencies are separated from the upper mids with out the constraints of the mid range driver being sealed with 4 cubic inches behind it.:smile5:

    i should point out that the mid woofers are dual voice coil. any muddiness that might come into play is unnoticeable.
  • 05-03-2008, 06:24 PM
    budgetaudio76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by kexodusc
    You have described series wiring here, not parallel wiring.


    Actually, I wouldn't advise this with an amp rated for 8 ohm loads only. Wiring two 4 ohm subs in parallel will reduce the impedance to 2 ohms, not 8 ohms, and that's likely to cause some damage.

    if this is the case i wonder why my amp didnt fry when i had these mid woofers as left and right channels . even at close to full volume. refering to the one right above the quote above my harmon is rated for only 8 ohms. method i used was neg. on left input, pos. on the right input and a short piece of wire to complete the connection.

    thanks for the correction kex. that was what i had in mind. i like to post here. theres always some one even smarter than i am.:thumbsup:
  • 05-04-2008, 03:38 AM
    markw
    Series v. Parallel speaker wiring
    To calculate the overal load in for series wiring, simply add the two impedances together. i.e Two 8 ohm speakers is (8 +8) or 16 ohms.

    For parallel wiring it's a bit different. You take the product of the two impedances and then divide that by the sum of the two impedances.

    (Speaker 1 impedance times Speaker 2 impedance)
    (Speaker 1 impedance plus Speaker 2 impedance)

    i.e. for those same two 8 ohm speakers it would look like this : (8 X 8) / (8 + 8), or 64 / 16, or 4 ohms.

    It's possible to combine four speakers of the same impedance and end up with the effective impedance of one. and I think this is what you were hinting at.

    With the four speakers, you first connect two speakers in series. You then do the same for the other two speakers. You now have two runs of 16 ohms each. Now, you connect both runs in parallel and, viola, you wind up with an effective load of 8 ohms!

    As others have said, there may be other acoustic complications but this should see you through the night.
  • 05-04-2008, 09:54 AM
    budgetaudio76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by markw
    To calculate the overal load in for series wiring, simply add the two impedances together. i.e Two 8 ohm speakers is (8 +8) or 16 ohms.

    For parallel wiring it's a bit different. You take the product of the two impedances and then divide that by the sum of the two impedances.

    (Speaker 1 impedance times Speaker 2 impedance)
    (Speaker 1 impedance plus Speaker 2 impedance)

    i.e. for those same two 8 ohm speakers it would look like this : (8 X 8) / (8 + 8), or 64 / 16, or 4 ohms.

    It's possible to combine four speakers of the same impedance and end up with the effective impedance of one. and I think this is what you were hinting at.

    With the four speakers, you first connect two speakers in series. You then do the same for the other two speakers. You now have two runs of 16 ohms each. Now, you connect both runs in parallel and, viola, you wind up with an effective load of 8 ohms!

    As others have said, there may be other acoustic complications but this should see you through the night.


    this is how they are wired.

    on a side note wouldnt speakers with multiple woofers or say drivers be wired in the same manner? like say some of the larger b&w which i hear are highly regarded? among others with multiple drivers. OR do they use speakers with high impedance rating that the finished product is what is stated on the product? way out of my price league. so i hardly look into them. except when im extremely bored.
  • 05-05-2008, 10:46 AM
    Mash
    I would be careful about "highly regarded" products....
    If you are referring to "product reviews", many reviews are presented by people who review manufacturer-loaned equipment to earn their living. If a particular reviewer's report bluntly hammers a product, will the manufacturer of the now-hammered product be eager to have that reviewer then review ANOTHER product? I would guess not.

    And if a particular reviewer develops an industry-wide reputation of being critical (in an honest way) of the products he or she reviews, do you think that reviewer will continue to get more loaned equipment to review? I would guess not.

    And if that reviewer should no longer receive any more loaned products to review, what could we call this? Unemployed?

    This is why many reviewers develop a "code" for their reviews, such as "the speaker had a big, bright sound". You could also write this as "the speaker was shrill". Now, I did once read a manufacturer's speaker ad where the phrase "the speaker had a big, bright sound" was actually quoted! I doubt the ad would have quoted "the speaker was shrill".

    I suspect that speakers using multiple drivers to cover one frequency range (i.e. Bose 901) use high impedance speakers wired in parallel. But I never investigated this.

    One exception could be the Magnepan speakers because their "voicecoils" are arranged in a distributed-flat configuration across the membrane, while cone speakers have their voice coils wound into a ring (on the bobbin) which is also how one makes an inductor.
  • 05-05-2008, 06:35 PM
    budgetaudio76
    sorry about the misperception there mash. i meant speakers regarded highly by consumers like you and i some pretty low budget who then save for years to get their expencive equipments. havent really read equip. reviews in awhile. tough to understand for someone of my intelligence level ;P. but yeah that is pretty funny. "the speaker had big,bright sound" as opposed to man this thing is shrill?! in finity had their flagship speaker a couple of decades ago that used more than 15 drivers. more or less but they used alot. i think they were like 60 grand . last i read anyways.
  • 05-06-2008, 07:42 PM
    budgetaudio76
    Quote:

    Originally Posted by budgetaudio76
    say you have more than one unpowered sub. like 2 of them. or better yet you have 4 of them all 8 ohm resistance. and you want to connect them all with out frying your amp which can only handle 8 ohms. takes more wire than usual so make sure you have enough.

    first with 2 subs.
    connect speaker wire as usual at the amp end. take pos. wire connect it to one sub. take the neg. wire connect it to the other sub. take on speaker wire split it in two and connect positive on one sub to negative on the other sub. now your amp sees a 16 ohm load. which lowers the power output abit. but now you have 2 subs which raises out put somewhat depending on what youre using. whats that? your amp didnt fry? this is even better with four subs. this is known as series wiring.

    now with 4 subs.

    you can do this 2 ways. wire as described above. but get another speaker wire connect it to the input terminal at the first set of subs. and wire the 3rd and 4th subs in the same manner.
    now you have 2 pairs of subs wired in a series/parallel configuration which the amp will see as an 8 ohm load. this works as well with subs with stereo inputs. but with alot less wires.
    whats that? your amp still didnt fry? thats what i like to hear.


    this can be done 2 ways.
    now with the 4 ohm amp. and you have 2 8 ohm subs. wire as usual behind amp. connect as usual at first sub. connect another set of wires. and connect the other sub as usual.
    now you have 2 8 ohm subs. but since they aare wired in parallel. the amp sees a 4 ohm load. no loss of power. just sweet, sweet bass.

    2nd way. get two speaker wires. connect them both behind the amp. as you usually would. connect both as usual behind the subs. the amp still sees the 4 ohm load. why? this is the same as wiring in paralle.

    if you have a 8 ohm amp and two 4 ohm subs. wire them in series. and the amp sees a 8 ohm load. if you have difficulty write a diagram on paper showing what a series connection is. same for a parallel connection. now join them together.

    still having difficulty? google series parallel wiring. it will be in more detail. but will say pretty much of what you read here. with diagrams and all.
    works with full range speakers as well. my center speakers are wired in series/parallel. still not fryed. 8 ohm rated sub/sat system.

    made correction to the second paragragh from parallel to series. thanks kex. any more corrections any one can see needs to be done please say so. i didnt mean for this to be the last word in this matter.:9:

    this is with the corrections made to the errors above. sorry about the mistakes. if your amp fried pm me and get it off your chest. i feel like such a jerk.