Plate amp clipping?

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abomwell

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Plate amp clipping?
« on: 26 Jan 2022, 08:25 pm »
A question for X series owners: While doing a frequency sweep of the X5's I heard a loud (what I thought was) speaker rattle in the low bass. At first I thought there must be something in my room vibrating at a particular frequency. Trying to isolate the particular problem frequency I played a frequency test tone CD. When it played the 25Hz frequency I heard the rattle and discovered it was from the speakers. Looking behind the speakers I noticed the red light on the plate amp flashing rapidly. Does that flashing red light indicate that the plate amp is clipping? I know amplifier clipping can imitate speaker rattle to perfection and wanted see if anyone knows about this.

Many thanks!

Al

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #1 on: 26 Jan 2022, 10:29 pm »
Trying to isolate the particular problem frequency I played a frequency test tone CD. When it played the 25Hz frequency I heard the rattle and discovered it was from the speakers. Looking behind the speakers I noticed the red light on the plate amp flashing rapidly. Does that flashing red light indicate that the plate amp is clipping?

Many thanks!

Al
Yes, the red flashing light indicates the plate amp is clipping.  I experienced the flashing red light early on in my ownership of the X5s.  X Series owners need to pay attention to the clipping because you may be happy with your bass extension, but you need to check behind the speakers to make sure your desired bass volume is not causing the amps to clip which you won’t know for sure without checking behind the speakers. I first discovered the clipping by turning up the amps a little bit and the red light started flashing when the bass notes from the song was playing.  I don’t get the bass that I really want because every time I turn the amps volume up to my preferred bass levels, they start clipping on a lot of songs with real low bass frequencies.  So, I chose a few songs that caused my amp to clip and backed off the amp volume just enough to stop the clipping and that pretty much guaranteed any other songs with less bass would not cause any clipping.  Otherwise, I would have to keep getting up and checking the amps for clipping which I have done and it takes away from my listening experience.

abomwell

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #2 on: 26 Jan 2022, 10:37 pm »
Many thanks, DBT Audio! That's what I suspected and appreciate your way of dealing with it.

Al5

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #3 on: 26 Jan 2022, 10:55 pm »
Many thanks, DBT Audio! That's what I suspected and appreciate your way of dealing with it.

Al5
No problem!

Desertpilot

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #4 on: 26 Jan 2022, 11:53 pm »
YIKES!  I never checked my X3s.  If I am clipping as well, would crossing over the speakers also solve the problem?  I use JRiver and I can crossover as low as 30 Hz although JRiver recommends 40 Hz for large speakers.

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #5 on: 27 Jan 2022, 12:16 am »
YIKES!  I never checked my X3s.  If I am clipping as well, would crossing over the speakers also solve the problem?  I use JRiver and I can crossover as low as 30 Hz although JRiver recommends 40 Hz for large speakers.
I’ve never played with any room correction software, so I don’t have an answer.  However, whatever you do to tune the bass down, I imagine, it would stop the amps from clipping.  BUT, will you still hear the desired bass you want with the adjustments you mentioned?  Sometimes, amps and drivers just run out of gas at certain bass frequencies.

mrotino332

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #6 on: 27 Jan 2022, 03:00 pm »
I guess my question is it actually bad for the lifespan of the amps or sound quality if the red light flashes every so often.  I do like some extra bass typically and do notice the red light flashes sometimes during bass heavy songs on my X5s.  I've had my speakers for almost two years now with no issues.  I don't believe unless you hear any obvious distortion that you are actually prematurely damaging the plate amp or am I mistaken?  The plate amp is a class D amp so i would think it is very robust.

abomwell

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #7 on: 27 Jan 2022, 04:33 pm »
YIKES!  I never checked my X3s.  If I am clipping as well, would crossing over the speakers also solve the problem?  I use JRiver and I can crossover as low as 30 Hz although JRiver recommends 40 Hz for large speakers.

I doubt there will be much clipping playing classical music. The occasional bass drum whack or very loud roll, or a sustained loud bottom octave organ tone might do it. But for mostly everything else, not too likely.

JTF

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #8 on: 27 Jan 2022, 09:36 pm »
A question for X series owners: While doing a frequency sweep of the X5's I heard a loud (what I thought was) speaker rattle in the low bass. At first I thought there must be something in my room vibrating at a particular frequency. Trying to isolate the particular problem frequency I played a frequency test tone CD. When it played the 25Hz frequency I heard the rattle and discovered it was from the speakers. Looking behind the speakers I noticed the red light on the plate amp flashing rapidly. Does that flashing red light indicate that the plate amp is clipping? I know amplifier clipping can imitate speaker rattle to perfection and wanted see if anyone knows about this.

Many thanks!

Al

I haven't had any clipping with my X5s, even with the bass turned all the way up. Which model of the hypex amp does your set have? My pair came with the 500w version (FA501) installed. Maybe that has something to do with it?

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #9 on: 27 Jan 2022, 09:39 pm »
I guess my question is it actually bad for the lifespan of the amps or sound quality if the red light flashes every so often.  I do like some extra bass typically and do notice the red light flashes sometimes during bass heavy songs on my X5s.  I've had my speakers for almost two years now with no issues.  I don't believe unless you hear any obvious distortion that you are actually prematurely damaging the plate amp or am I mistaken?  The plate amp is a class D amp so i would think it is very robust.
That’s a good question for Clayton and I can’t remember exactly what he said when I asked him about possible damage to the amp or speaker?  I know he advised me not to allow the amps to clip, so It’s clipping for a reason and I wouldn’t risk allowing them to clip.

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #10 on: 27 Jan 2022, 09:45 pm »
I haven't had any clipping with my X5s, even with the bass turned all the way up. Which model of the hypex amp does your set have? My pair came with the 500w version (FA501) installed. Maybe that has something to do with it?
I know your question was for abomwell, but I wanted to share that I do have the 250w amp paired with my X5s.  I am confident the 500w amp would give most X5 owners the desired bass without clipping.  You seem to have confirmed that.

Question for you, have you literally turned up your 500w amp to the max and didn’t experience any clipping?

Daryl Zero

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #11 on: 27 Jan 2022, 09:55 pm »
I haven't had any clipping with my X5s, even with the bass turned all the way up. Which model of the hypex amp does your set have? My pair came with the 500w version (FA501) installed. Maybe that has something to do with it?

Thanks for that info. I have an FA501 as well and turned all the way up. Because of this thread, I've looked back there but haven't seen anything. However, it's not like I'm driving the speakers at any really loud volume. I did play Bela Flecks' Flight of the Cosmic Hippo which has deep bass in it. Maybe I'll do that again and check the lights.

JTF

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #12 on: 27 Jan 2022, 10:29 pm »
Question for you, have you literally turned up your 500w amp to the max and didn’t experience any clipping?

Yes, but I'll test it again later tonight or tomorrow. Would you mind listing a few tracks that have caused clipping for you?

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #13 on: 27 Jan 2022, 11:03 pm »
Yes, but I'll test it again later tonight or tomorrow. Would you mind listing a few tracks that have caused clipping for you?
JTF, I really appreciate you doing a test run with some of the tunes that caused my 250w plate amps to clip.  So, I have a few screenshots of the songs below.  The title of the tracks are in bold font.  Thanks so much!












Desertpilot

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #14 on: 27 Jan 2022, 11:56 pm »
I just checked my X3s (delivered in May, 2021) and they have FA251 model.  Does that mean I have the 250 watt amp?  Gosh, it seems weird we all would have different model amps, clipping or not.  I hope Clayton will address this so we all can relax.

Edit:  I went to the Hypex website and can confirm FA251 is 250 watts and FA501 is 500 watts.

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #15 on: 28 Jan 2022, 01:04 am »
I just checked my X3s (delivered in May, 2021) and they have FA251 model.  Does that mean I have the 250 watt amp?  Gosh, it seems weird we all would have different model amps, clipping or not.  I hope Clayton will address this so we all can relax.

Edit:  I went to the Hypex website and can confirm FA251 is 250 watts and FA501 is 500 watts.
I assumed the X3s had the 500w amps and the X5s had the 250w amps?

Daryl Zero

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #16 on: 28 Jan 2022, 01:36 am »
With "The Flight of the Cosmic Hippo" I get a green light with a bit of short intermittent red flashing. It's the lower frequency and not the volume because turning the volume down didn't change it at all. More flashing with the really low notes. I can't hear any real distortion.

DBT AUDIO

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #17 on: 28 Jan 2022, 01:59 am »
With "The Flight of the Cosmic Hippo" I get a green light with a bit of short intermittent red flashing. It's the lower frequency and not the volume because turning the volume down didn't change it at all. More flashing with the really low notes. I can't hear any real distortion.
The flashing red light stops when I lower the subwoofer volume.  Are you referring to the preamp volume or subwoofer volume?

2Bad

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #18 on: 28 Jan 2022, 02:24 am »
I assumed the X3s had the 500w amps and the X5s had the 250w amps?

I made the same assumption as yourself so I double checked SA's comparison chart and it doesn't provide any info regarding the amps. :scratch:

I certainly wouldn't be happy if I had X3 speakers but only had the 250w amps. Perhaps the wrong amps are going into the wrong speakers... if true that wouldn't speak well for their quality gates.  :popcorn:

Daryl Zero

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Re: Plate amp clipping?
« Reply #19 on: 28 Jan 2022, 02:25 am »
The flashing red light stops when I lower the subwoofer volume.  Are you referring to the preamp volume or subwoofer volume?

Doh! I forgot that the sub amp is on its own.