How to Connect 4 Speakers to a 4 Channel Amp
Having a 2 channel may seem to be a good idea but wait until you get a 4 channel amp to see the extra advantages it has to offer. A 4 channel amp obviously has 4 outputs, making it cost-effective and also allowing you to connect as many speakers as possible to it. For starters, you can connect 4 speakers to your 4 channel.
For you to connect 4 speakers to a 4 channel amp, you should connect one speaker to each of the 4 channels. Wire the output ports of the amplifier to the input jacks of the speakers using speaker wires. For each speaker, connect the positive terminal of the amp to the positive terminal of the speaker and then also connect the negative terminal of the amp to the negative terminal of the speaker.
Since you are connecting only one speaker to each channel, this should be fairly easier unlike connecting multiple speakers to one channel. However, the amp and speaker ratings must be taken into consideration before you attempt to connect the speakers to the amp. To learn more about how to connect the speakers to your 4 channel, continue reading this guide for further details.
How Many Speakers Can I Connect to a 4 Channel Amp?
A 4 channel amp can provide you with so many options.
You can wire anything from just a speaker to as many as 8 speakers if you are using a 4 channel amp. There are some caveats to the number of speakers that you can connect to the amp though.
First of all, you should ensure that you do not overload the amp beyond its capacity. You can think of the amp as a motorbike that was designed to carry two persons. If 5 people decide to ride on the motorbike, that will be overloading the motorbike.
When it comes to speakers, you need to ensure that the power rating of the speakers matches the designed power rating of the amp before you use them on the amp.
If you overburden the amp with overrated speakers, you will have distortions in the sound that the speaker produces which will eventually damage the amp and speakers in the long run.
Factors to Consider Before Connecting Speakers to Amp
Before you connect the four speakers to the amp, you should know ahead of time what the ratings of the speakers and amp are.
Knowing these ratings and how you can match them is one way to keep the speakers and amp in good shape for a long time and also good quality sounds throughout the lifespan of your audio equipment.
When it comes to amps and speakers, two factors are most important.
- Root Mean Square Rating
Root Mean Square Rating
The Root Mean Square Rating or the RMS is the power rating of a speaker. It is measured in Watts and you can find it at the back of the speaker.
The RMS also tells you much power the speaker needs from the amp in order to convert the electrical signals into sounds for your hearing.
The trick is to get the speakers to match the rating of the amp that you are using. The amp or speaker’s spec sheet becomes very happy in this case.
You should consult your amp’s specification sheet when you want to connect speakers to it. If you purchased your amp from your local store, it should come along with its spec, otherwise, check on the internet to get the spec sheet of your specific amp.
When you pick up the spec sheet of your amp, it will tell which speaker ratings you can connect to the amp without compromising its functionality of the amp.
Different amps have different spec sheets so the information will vary from amp to amp.
The trick here is to get the rating of your amp and then use it to find speaker ratings that are suitable for it.
For example, for a 200 Watt amp, the spec sheet may allow you to use a 100 W speaker and this will work just perfectly fine.
The impedance of the speakers, which is measured in Ohms, is also one factor that needs serious consideration.
The impedance is a measure of resistance to the power flow from the amp to the speakers, so if the impedance is low, power will be drained from your amp easily and this may put extra pressure on the amp.
What you want is for the speakers to have some level of resistance so that reasonable power will be drained from the amp.
The spec sheet of your amp also has a range of impedance of speakers that you can use for the amp.
Make sure that the impedance of the speakers that you will be connecting to your amp falls within the range of the specified impedance for the amp.
How Many Watts Do I Need for 4 Speakers?
The power that you need to power 4 speakers varies from amp to amp. This is because every amp has its own specs.
Generally, if you are using 4 100 Watt speakers, you should be using an amp that is rated between 120 Watts to 400 Watts.
If you use amps that are rated below or beyond this range, you may be underpowering or overpowering the speakers.
The amp’s rating should always be higher than the speakers since it is the amp that supplies power to the speakers.
If you underpower the speakers, you will most certainly damage the speakers in no time. But before that, you’ll notice that your speakers will not be loud enough and at very high volumes, you will not be able to hear the bass well.
Overpowering your amp too can lead to sound distortions in your speaker and will affect the quality of sounds that your speakers produce.
How Do I Connect 4 Speakers to a 4 Channel Amp?
With a 4 channel amp, all you have to do to connect 4 speakers to it is to connect 1 speaker to each of the 4 channels.
This is pretty much simple and you will be able to do it during your public and private audio setups.
However, if you plan on using less than 4 speakers, let’s say 2 on your 4 channel amp, you can just bridge the other 2 channels as one and then connect the 2 speakers.
In this article, I’ll be focusing on using all 4 channels for the 4 speakers, let’s see how it’s done.
First of all, you will have to use appropriate wires for your amp-to-speaker connections. This is largely dependent on the type of connectors on your speaker and amp.
However, no matter which connector there is on the amp or speaker, the bottom line is to connect the output channel of the amp to the input jack of the speaker.
There are many speaker connectors. The popular ones are the binding post connectors and spring clip connectors.
Selecting the Speaker Wires
If your speakers have spring clips or binding posts, speaker wires should be your best choice for connecting the speaker to the amp.
Some speakers have speakon connectors, which demand the use of speakon cables, should use speakon cables when dealing with such connectors.
However, for the spring clips and binding posts, you should use speaker wires.
When it comes to speaker wires, you should select quality wires than prevent power losses during transmission. A speaker wire of 12- gauge will be fine.
How to Connect the Speaker to Amp Using Speaker Wires
Next is to position your the 4 speakers and run the speaker wires over the distance between the amp and the speakers in order to determine the distance between the amp and speakers.
Remember to include some extra pieces of wires during your measurements, just in case you need to make a few alterations in the future.
Use a wire stripper to strip off the rubber coating of the speaker wires to about a half inch from the ends of the wire. This will expose some considerable length of the bare wire which will be connected to the speaker and the amp.
After getting the bare wire exposed at both ends, what you should do is connect them to the output of the amp and the input port of the speaker.
You should connect the positive terminal of the amp to the positive terminal of the speaker and also connect the negative terminal of the amp to the negative terminal of the speaker.
For spring clip connectors, you should push the clip down on the speaker and then push the end of the speaker wire through the hold. After that release the clip this should keep the wire in its place.
For binding posts, loosen the threaded cap on both the speaker and amp and pass the speaker wire through the hole. After that, close the connection by tightening the threaded cap.
Once you are through with one speaker, do the same thing for the other 3 speakers and you’ll have the 4 speakers connected to your 4 channel amp in no time.
A 4 channel amp has several advantages over a 2 channel or 1 channel in terms of the number of speakers that can be connected to it. If you have speakers, you should have no trouble connecting these speakers to the amp.
You should just connect each speaker to a channel. Only make sure to abide by the specifications of the spec sheet. Use the appropriate ratings of RMS and impedance of the speakers and amps and you will be good to go.