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My 12 year-old Tripath TA2020 but with multiple inputs?

tino_fey

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Jul 5, 2023
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For the past 12 years I've been using a Tripath TA2020 mini amp (originally bought for $19!) to drive my bookshelf speakers (now Q Acoustics 3020). Up until now, I was connecting only a Chromecast Audio to that set-up, but I would like the option to have multiple types of input: in addition to the Chromecast Audio, also Bluetooth, and TV.

Is it time to retire the TA2020? Is there a very budget-friendly (up to $100) set-up that would allow me connect these multiple inputs to the speakers while maintaining quality? It would be ideal if I didn't have to toggle a physical selection button to choose between these inputs, and have it either be using a remote control or an app, or even better, have the amp just amplify the one that is now playing.

Hoping you guys can help!
 

Pariah Zero

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Oct 24, 2021
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Ah, the good 'ol "Class-T" amp - one of the first Class-D amps to get much recognition for sounding good. I actually have one sitting in my bedroom.

One thought: Most TV's are a good input switch; the caveat is the TV has to be turned on.
  • If that's not an obstacle, and the TV doesn't have the right 'smart' capabilities, get a streaming device such as an AppleTV, Roku, Amazon Fire TV, etc. and play your music, movies, and whatnot. A Roku or FireTV stick are pretty within that budget.
  • Many of them also give the ability to stream from phones, computers, and so on.
Do some research into what would best suit your needs, and go from there.
 

Pariah Zero

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Anything that does both amplification and switching of inputs is going to be cutting it close for your budget. Remotes make it even more expensive. The Master Review Index may be helpful for ideas. There are some amps reviewed by Amir here that you could probably pick up for within your budget used (they're not a headless panther). The SMSL AD18, the Dayton DTA-PRO would be examples - I've got the DTA-PRO. It sounds pretty good - likely better than the T-Amp you have.

For what it's worth: I've really not found anything that is smart enough to handle "auto" input selection well. Invariably, there will be multiple inputs running, or the device will get "confused" and you'll end up with the input on the wrong device. It really shouldn't be a surprise: How is automation supposed to tell the difference between a device actively playing the Dead Territory's Death Metal cover of John Cage's 4'33" and a device that is off?

It's even worse when there is death metal playing, and the auto-selection still chooses the device that is off.

 
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