Home Theater Review

 

Multi-channel Home Theater Amplifiers Reviewed

Packing more power than most monoblock audiophile amps, today's multi-channel amps come in a variety of configurations, including three channel, five channel, and seven channel power amps. Top performing home theater multi-channel amps can be Class AB operation however its becoming more popular to use Class D switching chips in "digital" multi-channel amps. No matter what type of multi-channel amp you are looking for HomeTheaterReview.com has a comprehensive list of the absolute best of the best in amps for you just below.

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Marantz MM8077 Multi-channel Amplifier

Marantz MM8077 Multi-channel Amplifier

By Brian Kahn

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

The MM8077 is Marantz's biggest multi-channel amplifier, with 150 watts of power in each of its seven channels. The MM8077 ($2,399) is designed to complement the new Marantz AV processors, such as the AV8801 that we recently reviewed. The design... Read More

 
Home Theater Review's Best of 2013 Awards

Home Theater Review's Best of 2013 Awards

By HomeTheaterReview.com

Overall Rating
0 Stars
 

It's that time of year again. The HomeTheaterReview.com staff has discussed all the products reviewed over the year and decided which ones rated the best. Check out our list of the best of 2013. Read More

 
Emotiva UPA-700 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

Emotiva UPA-700 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
5 Stars
 

Included in Emotiva's offerings it the UPA-700 multi-channel amplifier. Andrew Robinson takes this seven-channel amplifier and puts it to the test, seeing what level of performance can be achieved. Read More

 
Parasound A31 Three Channel Power Amplifier

Parasound A31 Three Channel Power Amplifier

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

Parasound has a longstanding history when it comes to amplifiers. One of the newer entrants to that legacy is the Parasound A31 three channel power amplifier. Andrew Robinson evaluates the A31 to see if it carries on the Parasound name. Read More

 
Home Theater Review's Best of 2012 Awards

Home Theater Review's Best of 2012 Awards

By HomeTheaterReview.com

Overall Rating
5 Stars
 

It's that time of year again. The Home Theater Review staff has looked over all of the year's impressive offerings - of which there were many - and narrowed it down to what they believe to be the best of 2012. Read More

 
Home Theater Review's 2011 Best Of Awards

Home Theater Review's 2011 Best Of Awards

By HomeTheaterReview.com

Overall Rating
5 Stars
 

For a third time, the editorial staff of Home Theater Review have examined the year's offerings in AV gear and decided what they deem to be the best in every category. Find out who is the best of the best. Read More

 
Outlaw Audio Model 7075 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

Outlaw Audio Model 7075 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
4 Stars
 

Outlaw Audio's Model 7075 seven channel amplifier claims to pack a lot of power and performance in a relatively small package. Andrew Robinson tests out the amp to see how it measures up against its claims. Read More

 
Outlaw Audio Model 7125 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

Outlaw Audio Model 7125 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

By Andrew Robinson

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

Outlaw Audio continues to offer a lot of power for a reasonable price with the Model 7125 seven channel amplifier. HomeTheaterReview.com managing editor Andrew Robinson tests out the amp to see how that power sounds. Read More

 
Wyred 4 Sound Mini MC5 Multi-channel Amplifier Reviewed

Wyred 4 Sound Mini MC5 Multi-channel Amplifier Reviewed

By Brian Kahn

Overall Rating
4 Stars
 

HTR Reviewer Brian Kahn took the Wyred 4 Sound Mini MC5 multi-channel amplifier and integrated it into his system for this review. While the MC5 performed well, there are some characteristics that may be a hang up for some users. Read More

 
Outlaw Model 7900 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

Outlaw Model 7900 Seven Channel Amplifier Reviewed

By Sean Killebrew

Overall Rating
4.5 Stars
 

Sean Killebrew hooked up the Outlaw Audio 7900 seven channel amplifier to his system for review. During the course of his tests, Sean Killebrew was surprised by what the 7900 had to offer. And was nearly blown away. Literally. Read More

 

Everything You Need To Know About Multi-channel Amplifiers

1.0 What is a Multi-channel Amp?
2.0 Types of Multi-channel Amps

2.1 Three Channel Amps
2.2 Five Channel Amps
2.3 Seven Channel Amps
2.4 Amps For Distributed Audio Systems

1.0 What is a Multi-Channel Amp?
A multi-channel power amplifier is an amp that has more than one channel of power amplification in the same chassis. Some amps on the high end have dedicated power supplies for each channel. Others share the same power supply, thereby lowering the overall cost of the amplifier.

Multi-channel amplifiers are popular in high-end home theater systems, as well as audiophile-grade music systems playing back audio in 5.1 surround.

2.0 Types of Multi-Channel Amps
There are numerous types of multi-channel amps, including solid state and tube-oriented designs. Increasingly, class D digital amps are made into multi-channel products that are very quiet, run cool and have lots of power compared to more traditional amplifiers.

2.1 Three-Channel Amps
Three-channel amps tend to be more audiophile-oriented, with price tags that are in line with what you would expect to see from an audiophile monoblock or stereo power amplifier. It is not uncommon to see three-channel amplifiers come with separate power supplies to retain the audiophile performance while still keeping all three channels inside of one chassis. Three-channel amps are often used for applications needing power for the three front channels (front left, front right and center), but are by no means limited to those roles.

2.2 Five-Channel Amps
The five-channel amplifier configuration is the most popular for multi-channel amplifiers, as they can accept a five-channel output from an AV preamp and supply power to everything but the often separately-powered "point 1" LFE or subwoofer channel.

2.3 Seven-Channel Amps
Seven-channel amplifiers are increasingly popular for systems that use the latest in surround sound technology, such as Dolby True HD and or DTS Master audio. Not only do the amps provide the dynamic range needed to make a better-than-theater audio experience, the seven channels allow for both side and rear speakers of a 7.1 surround speaker system. The "point 1" speaker goes normally to a powered or active subwoofer.

2.4 Amps For Distributed Audio Systems
Distributed audio systems that pipe music throughout an entire home use multi-channel amps that can have upwards of 24 to 26 channels of amplification. It is also not uncommon to see these amps be card-based, which means they are configurable as needed for each installation.

Heat is a big issue for these distributed audio system amplification systems, so digital amplifier (class D) technology is increasingly used in these amps.