You are here

Log in or register to post comments
JSpeer
JSpeer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 1 week ago
Joined: May 13 2014 - 10:47am
Minimum Wattage for Bookshelf Speakers

This is sort of the inverse to the previous topic ("Recommended Wattage ..."): I'm putting together a new system but don't have all the money together at this point. What I would like to do is get just the speakers (B&W CM5s) and hook them up directly to my TV's audio out. The TV's (Pioneer PDP-5080) built-in speakers are seriously gutless so almost anything would be an improvement.

My question is as follows: the speakers' recommended wattage is 30 - 120, but the TV's audio is rated at 17W. Would the speakers be hopelessly underdriven? Obviously I'm not looking for audiophile-quality sound, as long as there is clearly an improvement over what I have now (especially given my less-than-stellar hearing). That way I can listen to TV music stations until I have the bucks for an integrated amp and source component(s) -- and improved sound quality would presumably also benefit whatever TV I'm watching.

I appreciate whatever insight can be provided.

wkhanna
wkhanna's picture
Offline
Last seen: 1 hour 44 min ago
Joined: Jul 13 2007 - 1:46pm
Bad Idea

With impedance issues & the low level, low quality power provided by the TV I recommend against such a plan.
Few things will damage a speaker faster than too little power.
JMHO YMMV

Bill

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 22 hours 6 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Tv speakers/Audio
JSpeer wrote:

This is sort of the inverse to the previous topic ("Recommended Wattage ..."): I'm putting together a new system but don't have all the money together at this point. What I would like to do is get just the speakers (B&W CM5s) and hook them up directly to my TV's audio out. The TV's (Pioneer PDP-5080) built-in speakers are seriously gutless so almost anything would be an improvement.

My question is as follows: the speakers' recommended wattage is 30 - 120, but the TV's audio is rated at 17W. Would the speakers be hopelessly underdriven? Obviously I'm not looking for audiophile-quality sound, as long as there is clearly an improvement over what I have now (especially given my less-than-stellar hearing). That way I can listen to TV music stations until I have the bucks for an integrated amp and source component(s) -- and improved sound quality would presumably also benefit whatever TV I'm watching.

I appreciate whatever insight can be provided.

The 17 watts is the power that goes to the built-in speakers of the TV; it is NOT available to drive external speakers. You can't do what you are suggesting. There is no way to connect the TV amplifier circuits to external speakers.

The L/R audio output jacks on the TV is a pair of line-level outputs to connect via cables to the input jacks of an external amplifier or receiver, which will then drive your speakers. You cannot just connect those jacks to speakers (the power available is only a few milliwatts).

You must purchase an external amplifier or receiver to drive the speakers, preferably one that has at least 40 watts per channel of audio output power available.

The Sony STR-DH130 is available from Amazon for only $120; that would be suitable. It has around 75 watts per channel, which will drive your speakers adequately.

For $379 you could get the NAD C316BEE Integrated amplifier, which will sound even better with your speakers, but the Sony would be a good budget alternative for now. It will be a satisfactory solution for your current problem.

JSpeer
JSpeer's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 1 week ago
Joined: May 13 2014 - 10:47am
Thanks for the input. The TV

Thanks for the input. The TV's manual was fairly cryptic, but it seemed to specify 17W out at the terminals. At any rate, I might be doing something different (due to room size, among other things) and going with floor standers like the KEF Q900 or something similar -- also with the nova125. I'll decide shortly.

commsysman
commsysman's picture
Offline
Last seen: 22 hours 6 min ago
Joined: Apr 4 2006 - 11:33am
Speakers

Be aware that if you go with the Q900 speakers you will need to spend $1000-2000 for a amplifier that can drive them well; that is a whole different ball game...lol.

You might also want to consider the PSB Image T6 speakers, which are $1300 and are excellent (I had a pair for two years).

The Music Hall 15.3 is an excellent amplifier that is only $549 and will drive the PSB speakers well. That would be a good combination.

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading