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PreOut Voltage Question


Active Member
Mar 26, 2020
so, it appears there is now an option these days on the miniDSPs to get 2Vrms out of them, which for many years was not the case

for those who have had the 0.9Vrms output, and have had amplifiers downstream that need 1.4-1.8Vrms to hit peak output, what options are available to people to boost their pre-amp voltage

i think this applies to even AVRs, which many of them do not even list their output voltage so i cant comment on what their ranges are, i think some only output 1Vrms

could something like a headphone amplifier be used in between? are there other OP amps or buffer stages people can get to boost?

i personally dont need anything, was just curious about it



Major Contributor
May 27, 2021
A full component-style preamp seems like overkill (unless you already have one)...

A small mixer with line inputs might be the easiest & most economical solution. (It doesn't have to be used as a mixer).

A headphone amplifier might work. Headphone outputs and line-outputs are pretty much interchangeable except line-outputs aren't designed to drive headphones (because of the lower impedance) and you might get more voltage from the headphone output.

An op-amp is a component that can be used to build a preamp (or buffer circuit). It's pretty easy to build a preamp if you know something about building electronics, and it only takes a couple more components (plus a power supply). ...Except audio circuits (actually our ears) is VERY sensitive to noise and you can end-up with hum or loud turn-on pops, etc.* (Line level circuits or power amplifier circuits are not nearly as prone to noise as a phono preamp or mic preamp where you have a weak signal and lots of gain.)

A buffer (a little easier to build than an amplifier) doesn't have any gain... It "adapts" a high-impedance input to a low-impedance output.

Line level is not tightly defined (and sometimes there is a volume control, and it depends on the "loudness" of the program/song) but most line-outputs have enough signal and most inputs have enough sensitivity that everything works together.

* Noise is the only thing that's tricky... It's easy to get low distortion and flat frequency response (way beyond the audio range it you want), especially at low gain... Everything is "easier" with low gain!
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