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LM386 + 8Ω speaker. how to make the sound clear?

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babyvl

New Member
hi. i had successfully complete my speaker analogue circuit using LM386 with 8Ω speaker/0.25watt. but the sound is terrible at high volume. how do i make the sound clear at full volume?
 

Thunderchild

New Member
what voltage are you running at, if the supply voltage is too low the output will be "clipped" if you turn the gain/volume up too high, eseentially use a more powerful amplifier
 

audioguru

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
Amplifiers are never operated at full volume unless the input signal level is too low.

An LM386 amplifier powered from a brand new 9V alkaline battery and driving an 8 ohm speaker begins to distort when its output power is only 0.45W which is not much power. An amplifier that has an output power of 4.5W when it begins to distort will sound twice as loud.

A speaker rated at only 0.25W is extremely cheap and small. The 3" speakers in my fairly inexpensive pc speakers are rated at 4W.
 

transistor495

Member
Forum Supporter
LM386 story

hi. i had successfully complete my speaker analogue circuit using LM386 with 8Ω speaker/0.25watt. but the sound is terrible at high volume. how do i make the sound clear at full volume?
I had a number of attempts with this chip with quite disappointing results.

LM386 is good for nothing, but experiments.Running it at full volume to a 250mW speaker is not at all a good idea. You need a 1W speaker at least.

It is a very old integrated circuit with high gain but low power. Result: Poor quality/distorted audio output especially when newbies are building without knowing exactly what they're doing. They'll probably run it with high gain mode with high voltage signal input.

The chip was a king a 'century' ago where no general purpose amplifiers were available. Of course, it could be used for building a LM386 radio or basic power amplifier at that age.

I haven't had much exposure to TDA2822M, but recently it proved me that it affects the audio quality(suppose headphone operation) by severe background hiss(in-born phenomena). Apart from that I like this chip because it's min. supply requirement is 1.8V and bridge configuration for high power mono operation.

For all my low voltage audio applications, I use TA7368P Toshiba amplifier which is quite decent in operation considering all these facts. It's min. supply voltage is 2V. TDA7052 also a good one so use it for direct replacement for LM386!

Anyway I use LM386 for experiments because it is a basic amplifier with in-built pre-amp so I could eliminate 1 or 2 discrete stages..a good chip for experiments!

Nowadays we're talking and dealing with quality and perfection..:)
 
Last edited:

audioguru

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
I built an amplifier with an LM390 IC that is obsolete now. It is powered from a 9VDC wall-wart. Its output at clipping is 1.75W into 4 ohms. It drives two 3" 8-ohm speakers in parallel for my little TV and it is very loud and very clear.

Many IC amplifiers sound bad because they are built with parts missing that are recommended on their datasheets. Many sound bad because they oscillate when built on a Mickey Mouse breadboard instead of being built on a compact pcb.
 

Hero999

Banned
The LM386 is fine for headphones or for small speakers when excellent quality isn't required.

I like the way it has a reasonable power bandwith so can be used as a general purpose buffer.
 

Ubergeek63

Well-Known Member
I had a number of attempts with this chip with quite disappointing results.

LM386 is good for nothing, but experiments.Running it at full volume to a 250mW speaker is not at all a good idea. You need a 1W speaker at least.

It is a very old integrated circuit with high gain but low power. Result: Poor quality/distorted audio output especially when newbies are building without knowing exactly what they're doing. They'll probably run it with high gain mode with high voltage signal input.

The chip was a king a 'century' ago where no general purpose amplifiers were available. Of course, it could be used for building a LM386 radio or basic power amplifier at that age.

I haven't had much exposure to TDA2822M, but recently it proved me that it affects the audio quality(suppose headphone operation) by severe background hiss(in-born phenomena). Apart from that I like this chip because it's min. supply requirement is 1.8V and bridge configuration for high power mono operation.

For all my low voltage audio applications, I use TA7368P Toshiba amplifier which is quite decent in operation considering all these facts. It's min. supply voltage is 2V. TDA7052 also a good one so use it for direct replacement for LM386!

Anyway I use LM386 for experiments because it is a basic amplifier with in-built pre-amp so I could eliminate 1 or 2 discrete stages..a good chip for experiments!

Nowadays we're talking and dealing with quality and perfection..:)
Hmmm the ANY chip would have been a MIRACLE a century ago! I think you might have meant decade!

Actually it was not king a decade ago either, though it might have seemed so to hobbyists.

Dan
 

babyvl

New Member
thanks guys. really appreciate it. it is supplied by 9v battery. thank you so much. we"ll see how it goes. i will try your suggestion. thank you guys. :)
 

transistor495

Member
Forum Supporter
OK, few questions..

Now what century we're in? - 21st century
Before 2001, which was the century? - 20th century.

Bit of calculations:
21 century - 20 century = 1 century.

So 20th century is 1(a) century ago.

Was LM386 present in 20th century? - Yes!

Was it a king? - The 'classic' LM386 was a 'audioking' during 80's. Some of you may find the attached document interesting.View attachment lm386..pdf

Which are all the audio chips present during 1975-80's?

That clearly proves it.
 

Ubergeek63

Well-Known Member
OK, few questions..

Now what century we're in? - 21st century
Before 2001, which was the century? - 20th century.

Bit of calculations:
21 century - 20 century = 1 century.

So 20th century is 1(a) century ago.

Was LM386 present in 20th century? - Yes!

Was it a king? - The 'classic' LM386 was a 'audioking' during 80's. Some of you may find the attached document interesting.View attachment 40870

Which are all the audio chips present during 1975-80's?

That clearly proves it.

Well that would be in the last century ... a century ago means 100 yrs ago, the last or previous century is what you are saying. And I believe there were indeed better audio chips in the 80s... that does not, however, mean they were readily available at trash shack to the hobbyist.
 

audioguru

Well-Known Member
Most Helpful Member
In the '70s and '80s I used LM2896 dual amplifier ICs powered by six Ni-cads (7.2V) bridged and driving a 4 ohm sub-woofer to 6W and 3W for each 8 ohm channel in my "beach" sound system. It sounded a lot better than boom-boxes.
 

transistor495

Member
Forum Supporter
Well that would be in the last century ... a century ago means 100 yrs ago
Did you notice the single quotes I put for 'century' in post #6?
And I believe there were indeed better audio chips in the 80s... that does not, however, mean they were readily available at trash shack to the hobbyist.
I can't even believe that during 80's itself there were quite a number of better audio chips that beats LM386 on the same range?
So I feel it shame that still it holds the same attraction.

I assume two reasons for that:
1) Only because of popularity and exaggerated contents on web..
2) Availability.
 

Ubergeek63

Well-Known Member
Did you notice the single quotes I put for 'century' in post #6?
I can't even believe that during 80's itself there were quite a number of better audio chips that beats LM386 on the same range?
So I feel it shame that still it holds the same attraction.

I assume two reasons for that:
1) Only because of popularity and exaggerated contents on web..
2) Availability.
certainly... the damnable L293 stepper chips are a testament to web exaggeration. hobbyists latch onto something and next thing you know that is all you find on generic searches!
 
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