Have you ever wondered how to connect two amps together? Well, look no further. This is the ultimate in guides on how to connect two amps and what the benefits of doing so yield for you.
Maybe you want to boost your sound system. Perhaps you want to make use of an old amp instead of letting it decay. Whatever the reason, you need a method to connect the two amps together in a safe and secure way.
Read on to find out just how to do this. We will also very helpfully discuss ways not to connect two amps together, to avoid any amp related disasters.
An amp is an electrical device.
It is used to amplify sound. It makes the sound that is already there, louder and stronger by boosting the electrical signal and therefore intensifying audio output.
You can also play around with audio with amps by adjusting EQ settings and channeling in on different frequencies. This can enhance audio and lead to a crisper, more focussed overall sound. They are an integral part of any home recording studio.
Amps come in all shapes, sizes, and power ratios. What you have will dictate exactly what you can do with it.
Why Would You Need Two Amps Connected Together?
There are a few common reasons why you might want to connect two amps together.
- Boost your audio signal. While one amp may be sufficient in boosting the audio signal, two amps together will provide an even more powerful, stronger audio experience. A good example of this is home studios.
- Make use of an old amp device, instead of letting it go to the dust bunnies.
- Connecting to a subwoofer.
Let’s take a look at the best methods for connecting two amps together.
Speaker Selector Switch
First up is the speaker selector switch method.
It’s worth noting that if you go down the speaker selector switch route, you will only be able to make use of one amp at a time, as opposed to both amps. But both amps will be in use, you just switch between the two.
A speaker selector switch splits the audio into different channels. By using it, you can choose which channel produces audio and which stays mute.
Here’s The Method
- Get to know your speakers. Any speaker worth mentioning, and able to connect up to an amp, will have a back panel with different inputs and outputs.
The inputs are the thing you want to focus on. Outputs are for amp connections. Input labels where the amp can be connected to the speaker.
- Figure out your Ls from your Rs. A vital part of this process is connecting the correct amp output to the correct speaker input. There is an R to R connection and L to L connection. If you get this wrong – it’s game over. You can break your entire system. So, you don’t want to get it wrong.
- Follow closely, because it’s about to get a little complicated. Ok, so you’ve got your amps, and you’ve got your speakers. You have your Ls and Rs.
You’re ready. First up is the ‘A’ input of the switch. This is for your first amp. Second up is amp number two. Connect this to the ‘B’ switch input, again taking into account your Ls and your Rs.
- Once everything is nicely and correctly connected up, with no crossed wires, you should be able to simply use the switch to switch between amps.
With all that in mind, you may be wondering why we’ve even mentioned using a switch selector. Given that if you use this method, you won’t actually be able to use your amps in unison.
There is a strong case for multiple amp hookups and being able to switch between them.
- You want to compare the sound of two different amp systems.
- Different amps create different sounds and produce different frequencies in different ways.
- Home stereo systems and home theater systems.
What Is This Method Good For?
Even though you can’t use both amps concurrently, you can still use both amps. This is a good method to use if you have one amp that suits certain music over the other.
You can switch between them to play different sounds and songs and tracks with barely any effort at all, just the flick of a switch. That way, you get the best audio for your ears, and you don’t have to mess around plugging each amp in and out and in and out.
A preamp output allows you to use both of your amps in perfect unison.
Preamps are signal boosters. They take a weak signal and get it ready to be up to standard for an amp. It helps you get a clear, non-distorted, pure sound.
For this method, you will need a preamp, your two amps, and an RCA cable. Plus whatever you’re connecting those amps up to.
- Savvy up. Figure out where the outputs on the preamp are situated. These are more than likely going to be labeled as ‘pre out’. You should be able to find them on either the receiver or the head unit.
- Okay, when you’ve got that down, here’s what to do next. We are circling back to the Ls and Rs for this step. Connect up an RCA speaker cable. This is going from L to L and R to R from the preamp to the main amp. Do the same thing with another RCA cable from L to L and R to R on the second amp as well.
- So far, so good. The last part is the easy bit. All you have to do now, provided you have followed all the steps correctly and not confused your Ls from your Rs, is to connect the amps up to the speakers. This also works on subwoofers too, should you be in the mood for some low frequencies.
Last but not least, we go on to active crossovers.
Active crossovers are another way of changing and fine-tuning an audio signal before you get to using your amp. It essentially divvies up audio frequencies, such as bass, treble, etc., and sends them to their rightful place i.e., the bass goes to the subwoofer, treble goes to the tweeter, and so on and so on.
So, how do they make it so that you can connect two amps together?
They split the frequencies and connect the amps accordingly.
- Step one, locate your head unit. This is where it all begins. Head unit safely located, find the output. This is going to connect to the input of the active crossover. (Don’t forget to not mix up your Rs and Ls. I know we say it every time, but that should just show you how important it is.).
- High signal goes to high frequency speakers. The low signal goes to low frequency speakers.
- You can then play around with the dials and controls to get the ultimate frequency for your ears. This should be good fun if anything. And you can create a completely bespoke and self soothing sound.
Things To Remember
So now we have seen all the various methods we can muster up that cover how to connect one amp to another amp.
- Input and Output are the keys to good sound. Make sure you get the right input with the right output and vice versa. This can be a big deciding factor in a functional audio system vs a dysfunctional system. As long as you get these right, you will be fine.
- L goes with L.
- R goes with R.
- If you forget your Ls and Rs, you could be in big trouble. You run the risk of completely destroying your setup, blowing your speakers, breaking your amp, and causing floods. Well, not the floods, but we want to impress the gravity of the situation upon you nonetheless.
- Tidy your cables. With some of these methods, things can get a little messy in the studio (or home theater). Basically anywhere where you’re using multiple amps, multiple speakers, throwing in active crossovers, and preamps too. Not to mention RAC cables.
There’s bound to be a lot of cables and the like flying around.
Your space can quickly become easily overwhelmed. You can avoid this by installing a single power block. These are handy little things that distribute power across multiple outputs from one singular source. They are easy to install, a simple plugin, and they can keep a space safer and tidier.
Last But Not Least
There you have it.
Three tried and tested methods to connect your two amps together in perfect harmony. Or unison.
Whichever method you chose, our straightforward descriptive guidelines should give you peace of mind that you’re doing it right. Hopefully, the results will speak for themselves.
No amp ever needs to go to waste drowning in the dust. Let it speak for itself.