If you are starting to think of setting up your home theater system, you may want to know if you need a receiver or an amplifier for your home theater system. Many questions may arise in your mind. What’s the difference between a receiver and an amplifier? Are they the same? Questions like these may arise in your mind while setting up your home theater system. Are they the same? The answer to this question is negative. There are differences between these two. So, you might know the differences between these two and choose the right one for your home theater system.
what is an amplifier? An amplifier takes an audio signal, amplifies it, and then your speakers use it to play the audio. What is a receiver? A receiver comes with an amplifier and many functionalities like a preamp, input selection, tuner, radio, and more.
When you are getting a tuner, volume controls, radio, etc., and an amplifier in a single device, why should you buy an amplifier? Though a receiver is more beneficial, an amplifier is beneficial to use. If you want to have a crystal-clear idea about these two, then keep reading.
We have already told you that an amplifier takes an audio signal, amplifies it, and then outputs it. It is very important for your speakers. If you don’t get the amplified signal, your speakers won’t get enough power to work.
But when choosing between a receiver and an amplifier, you would probably choose a receiver because you are getting many functionalities with a receiver.
You may think a standalone amplifier is standalone. But unfortunately, it isn’t. You will need the speakers, a preamp, the amplifier so that the system can work.
You would like to choose a receiver rather than an amplifier after reading this far. But you have to consider more things before your final decision.
Amplifier vs Receiver
As you know, a receiver is more convenient than an amplifier; you may like to choose a receiver. But there are some cases you might choose an amplifier rather than a receiver.
You already know that a receiver comes with a built-in amplifier and many functionalities like a preamp, input selection, tuner, radio, and more. You may choose a receiver for your home theater system to connect your speakers, TV, and more all into a single spot. It will be a great choice. But if you are an audio lover, want to set up your home theater for music, in that case, an amplifier would be a great choice.
Regardless, between these two, many people choose a receiver. People who are music or audio lovers choose an amplifier for their home theater system.
Pros and Cons of Amplifiers (Separates)
Pros of Amplifiers
- If you go with the separates, you will have the control of choosing your preferred components. You can pick the best or your favorite components like the preamps, tuner, amplifier, radio, etc., in the market. You don’t need to buy a pre-built unit that doesn’t provide components that you like.
- You can easily upgrade a separate system unit wherein a receiver you couldn’t. You won’t need to buy a new system for a component. If you need a better amplifier or a new tuner, you can easily change it.
Cons of Amplifiers
- If you go for a separate unit, then you will need to consume a bit more money. Separates items with the best quality will cost a good price. And it will be a big factor when you are getting all the components at a much lower price.
- The separate unit will take more space to set up the system completely. As each component is self-contained, the system will take more space than a receiver.
Pros and Cons of Receivers (Separates)
Pros of Receivers
- All-in-one Unit– If you choose a receiver, you will get everything in a package. It includes a built-in amplifier and many functionalities like a preamp, input selection, tuner, radio, and more. It will be a perfect choice for your home theater system.
- Conserve Space- A receiver doesn’t take much space. It will take less space than a separate system.
- Cheaper Option– A receiver will go to cost less than other separate components.
Cons of Receivers
- Usually, a Lower Quality Amplifier- The amplifier of the receiver is not a completely dedicated amplifier. Though it is built-in, it has to share space with the other components. So, if your speaker is large, it might not produce enough power to make them work.
- Must Replace the Entire Unit when Upgrading- When it comes to upgrading your receiver, it isn’t very cost-efficient. Besides, there is no way to upgrade the individual parts. In that case, you will need to purchase a new receiver.
Should you use Amplifier or Receiver?
We think we can give you all details clearly. Now it is time to choose between these two units. So, which one should you choose?
Well, if you don’t have a large room, you don’t need huge speakers, you want all the components in a single unit, then you should go for a receiver. It will be a great choice for you.
But if you are an audio lover, want the best sound quality, have large speakers, have a large room, then you should go for an amplifier with separates. It will be the right choice for you.
Different Types of Receivers
There are varieties of receivers in the market. You need to choose the right one for your setup.
A/V (Audio/Video) Receivers
A/V receivers or audio-video receivers contain support for video and audio. Besides, they have spaces for multiple inputs. It will help you connect media streaming devices, gaming consoles, Blu-ray players, and others to your TV and speakers.
For people who want to consolidate all the components of their home theater without too much mess, this will be a great choice. If you want a convenient way to set up your home theater, it will be a great choice.
Stereo receivers will provide you a great audio system. They have functions like input selectors for picking various audio sources, volume controls, radios. But they don’t provide any support for video sources.
It is a great choice for people who love audio but want a convenient setup. It is a great cost-efficient option to power your speakers for listening to music.
Do you need an amplifier and receiver?
The answer is no. If you purchase an A/V receiver, you will get a built-in amplifier. An A/V receiver can receive a signal, then process it, amplify the signal, and allow video to pass through to a TV. But an amplifier is only capable of receiving an audio signal, then process it and amplify the audio signal to different speakers. Most of the time, you will need either an A/V receiver or an amplifier, never both at the same time.
What is the difference between a preamplifier and an amplifier?
The only difference between these two is power. A preamplifier gives a small amount of power to boost a weak signal to line level. On the contrary, an amplifier provides much power to boost the power of a line level to a level so that speakers can use it.
Can you only connect all the components to my TV?
It depends on your TV because many TVs don’t come with enough input slots to connect all the components. But if your TV supports that, you won’t get the same sound quality via your TV as you would get a receiver and speakers.
Isn’t the audio going to be worse in an all-in-one system like a receiver?
No. Nowadays, the audio quality of a receiver is very improved. It is comparable to an amplifier’s audio quality. The only difference is you can choose your favorite components in a separate unit, while in a receiver, you can’t do that. However, it is not a big problem for the consumers.
-our editorial board has reviewed this article and has been approved for publication according to our editorial policy.
Best Seller List of Receivers:
Best Seller List of Amplifiers:
- Powered by a USA Designed Texas Instruments TPA3118 producing clean, efficient audio with detail
- Solid performer that’s economically priced and compact sized
- 3.5 mm stereo jack and Gold-plated RCA inputs
- Lightweight aluminum enclosure with mounting tabs
- 12 VDC, 3A power supply included
- ☑️220 WATTS PEAK POWER: Moukey 2.0 Channel Bluetooth Stereo Amplifier Receiver is compact but powerful, which is perfect for your karaoke, home theater, acoustic sound system, and monitor headphones. Provides with 220 watts peak power output, you can enjoy the high-quality home audio experience.
- ☑️7 INPUTS: The audio amplifier supports various external signal sources - 2 pairs RCA audio inputs for CD player and DVD player, 2 1/4 inch(6.35mm) microphone inputs, USB（maximum 32G）, SD card（maximum 16G）, 3.5mm AUX IN, FM radio. With RCA Line Out, banana plug for speaker outputs. Supports 1/4 inch(6.35mm) headphone connection, so you can enjoy audio all the time without the worry that bothers others.
- ☑️EQ CONTROLS: The improved professional compact bookshelf sound amplifier features clear, responsive buttons for mode control. Knobs control for microphone echo / volume, balance, bass, treble, master volume, input source and unique folder / track.
- ☑️BLUETOOTH 5.0 WIRELESS CONNECTION: The professional indoor stereo receiver is equipped with Bluetooth music streaming with a wireless range of 40 feet / 10 meters or more. Works with today's latest devices (including smartphone, tablet, iPad, iPhone and computer), this bluetooth amplifier is easy to pair with the receiver.
- ☑️HD LED SCREEN: The integrated receiver for home stereo features an FM radio w/ built-in LED display w/ front panel audio control center. FM Antenna and Remote Control are included in the stereo amplifier package for distant audio adjustments. (Remote control can ONLY remotely control the volume of MP3/BT/FM.)
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Last update on 2023-12-07