If you’ve got a smart speaker with Alexa compatible amplifier built-in, you can set it up so that the sound from your music, radio, or other Alexa device plays through your speaker. And when you do that, it means that everyone in your home will be able to use voice commands with Alexa to play music and control other connected devices like lights and thermostats. In order for this to work, though, you need an amplifier.
An amplifier is a hardware device that processes audio signals and makes them audible – and an essential one if you have an Alexa-enabled home theatre system and want the best possible experience. Here’s everything you need to know about choosing the right one for your home.
What is an Alexa Compatible Amplifier?
An Alexa compatible amplifier is an amplifier that supports the Amazon Echo device. These amplifiers are designed to work with Echo devices and allow them to connect to speakers. Most of these amplifiers have built-in Bluetooth technology, meaning they can easily connect to any speaker with Bluetooth capabilities.
How to Choose the right Alexa Compatible Amplifier for your home?
1. Amplifier type
The first thing to consider is what type of amplifier you want. There are two types of amplifiers: Class D and Class A/B. Both have their pros and cons, but Class B amps are generally considered superior due to their higher efficiency and lower distortion. However, they do tend to produce more noise than class D amps.
If you’re looking at getting a dedicated amp for your speakers, then you should probably go with a class D amp. If you’d rather just use your existing equipment, then a class AB amp would work best.
2. Speaker Impedance
Speaker impedance refers to how much power the speaker takes in. Speakers rated at 4 ohms take in twice as much power as those rated at 8 ohms. You may not need to worry about this if you’re using a powered subwoofer, but if you’re going to use a separate amp, you’ll need to make sure you match the impedance of the speaker to the output of the amp.
3. Power Rating
Power ratings refer to the maximum amount of power the amp can handle. Most people don’t care about this number unless they plan on powering a lot of devices, but it’s something to keep in mind.
Features are things like built-in equalization and bass management. These features are nice to have, but they aren’t necessary.
This is a big one. Look for a manufacturer who offers a warranty. Also, look for a company that stands behind its products.
Considerations when buying an Alexa Compatible Amplifier
1. Amplifier power
The first consideration when buying an Alexa-compatible amplifier is how much power does it have? A good rule of thumb is to buy an amplifier that has at least 10 watts per channel. If you’re looking to run two channels, then you should look for an amplifier that has 20 watts per channel. Most amplifiers have a maximum output of 100 watts, so if you want to run more than 2 channels, you may need to get a separate amplifier for each channel.
2. Channel count
Another thing to consider when buying an Alexa-compatible amplifier is its channel count. You don’t necessarily need to go for the highest number of channels possible, but you do want to make sure that you have enough channels to accommodate any additional speakers you might add later down the road.
3. Power handling Capability
You also want to make sure that the amplifier you choose has enough power-handling capacity to handle whatever music you plan to play. Generally speaking, you won’t need anything over 50 watts per channel, but if you’re planning on running a subwoofer, you may want to look for something that has around 100 watts per channel.
4. Input Impedance
Input impedance is the amount of resistance a device presents to incoming electrical signals. High input impedances allow high-frequency audio signals to pass through without being distorted. Low input impedances cause distortion and reduce the quality of sound. Ideally, you want to find an amplifier that has a low input impedance.
5. Output impedance
Output impedance is the amount of current a speaker draws from an amplifier. An amplifier with a higher output impedance will draw more current from the speaker, causing the speaker to produce less volume. Ideally, you want an amplifier with a low output impedance.
6. Speaker Compatibility
In addition to selecting an amplifier based on its power handling capabilities, you also want to select an amplifier that supports the type of speakers you plan to use. In general, you want to avoid using speakers with a 4-ohm load rating (meaning they require 4 ohms of resistance) with an amplifier rated for 8 ohms or greater. That way, you won’t overload the amplifier.
7. Volume Control
When choosing an amplifier, you also want to make sure it has volume control. While some amplifiers offer built-in volume controls, others only offer external ones. External volume controls are easier to operate and provide a wider range of adjustments.
8. Remote control
Finally, you want to make sure the amplifier you purchase comes with integrated remote control. This makes it easier to adjust the volume and turn the amp on and off.
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1. Marantz MS7000
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2. Google Assistant
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3. Amazon Alexa
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2. Amazon Alexa
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