Why buy an Amplifier ?
Music enriches the fabric of human life. It should be reproduced with dynamic clarity capable of unleashing the emotional power of the original performance.
While there are many obstacles to achieving this ideal the easiest to overcome is lack of power. Amplifier technology is mature and well understood. So just feed your speakers with unfettered, unclipped, non-distorted power and be moved by the performance.
How much power is enough ?
There is no universal answer. It depends on loudspeaker efficiency, room size, listening habits and the quality of the material. The new, lossless codecs from Dolby and DTS (Dolby TrueHD and DTS-HD Master Audio) are exact copies of the master recording and place the most stringent demands on the reproduction system. Even listening at an average power of a single watt can require over 100 watts per channel to cleanly reproduce peak signals.
Why can't I just use a receiver ? Aren't they all rated at 100 watts per channel or more ?
While there are a few receivers on the market that are actually capable of delivering 100 watts or more to each of the speakers in a system, most are not. Our recent review of the actual power output capability of a number of receivers as reported by Home Theater magazine revealed the following when all 7 channels were driven simultaneously:
• A $2000 receiver capable of only 37.3 watts per channel
• A $1000 receiver with actual power of only 30.2 watts per channel
• A $749 receiver with only 38.9 watts per channel
• A $599 receiver capable of only 30.9 watts per channel
• A $440 receiver that delivered only 5.2 watts per channel
When used with speakers of typical efficiency (87 dB at 1 watt input measured at 1 meter distance), these receivers would not be able to satisfy our key criterion: unclipped, undistorted peak output when playing back the highest quality material from today's best music and movies.
What's different about ATI ?
With no universal measurement and reporting standard in place, consumers clearly cannot rely on manufacturer's power specifications for receivers. ATI is different. All of our amplifiers are rated with all channels driven over the full bandwidth (20 Hz to 20 kHz) at vanishingly low distortion (<0.03%) into 8 ohms and will deliver at least 50 percent more power under the same conditions into 4 ohms.
For example our AT1807, rated at 180 watts per channel from 20 Hz to 20 kHz with less than 0.03% distortion into 8 ohms with all 7 channels driven delivers over 200 watts per channel into 8 ohms and over 300 watts per channel into 4 ohms.
Are their different levels of quality at ATI ?
While all ATI amplifiers share the same basic specifications except for power output capability and the number of channels, our 2000 and 3000 series amplifiers have more advanced circuit topology we call Pure Balance . Essentially Pure Balance offers two-complete amplifiers per channel. The benefits of this design are tremendous. It automatically rejects any noise coming in from external sources, such as radio-frequency and electromagnetic interference. It eliminates hum and reduces distortion. It also doubles the speed (slew rate) of the amplifier for better reproduction of high frequencies and better transient performance. And it reduces noise by 50%.