CHOKING HAZARD -- Small parts. Not for children under 3 yrs.
Lepai LP-2020A+ Tripath TA2020 Class-T Hi-Fi Audio Amplifier with Power Supply
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- Compact size makes this amplifier great for projects and DIY audio applications
- 3.5 mm jack allows for easy connection to iPods, cell phones, and all sorts of mp3 players
- Aluminum enclosure that is lightweight, yet sturdy, and acts as a heat sink
- Tripath TA2020 amplifier chip provides efficient, powerful sound
- Economical price and tremendous performance
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This Lepai Tripath-based mini audio amplifier is ideal for both home and car audio applications. The amplifier's TA2020 amp chip is a 20W/ch continuous average two-channel Class-T Digital Audio Power Amplifier IC that incorporates Tripath's proprietary Digital Power Processing technology. Class-T amplifiers offer the audio fidelity of Class-AB amps combined with the power efficiency of Class-D amplifiers. The Lepai amp's clean, 20 watt output makes it perfect for most any auto or home audio project or DIY application. Google Lepai TA2020 and you'll find this little amp has been discussed and raved about! Each unit has an RCA Left and Right channel input, or you can use the 3.5 mm stereo input jack for plugging in almost any music source, such as iPods, cell phones, or MP3 players. Convenient spring terminals make connections to your speakers quick and easy! The Lepai mini amplifier has an aluminum enclosure that is lightweight, yet sturdy, and acts as a heat sink to keep the amp running cool. Color may vary.Includes 12V, 2A power supply. Specifications: Power output: 2 x 20 watts RMS ; Input impedance: 47k ohms ; Frequency response: 20 Hz - 20 kHz ; Input sensitivity: 200 mV ; Minimum THD: <0.05% ; Dimensions (D x W x H): 120 x 147 x 42 mm.The power supplies that come with the unit may vary, operating voltage is up to 14.6 V.
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1) This amp is really inexpensive. If you cannot spend more than 20 bucks then you may want to take a close look at this amp.
2) The sound quality albeit at low volume is pretty decent. This amp uses the TA2020 chip set which does offer quite low distortion at low volume.
3) The amp has tone controls so you can fiddle with the sound to some degree.
1) You'll be hard pressed to drive a pair of low-sensitivity or 8-Ohm speakers to decent volume with this amp. With an 8 Ohm speaker, you get clean sound to around 5 Watts only. If you crank the amp up to 10 Watts you'll already hit 10% distortion. With 4 Ohm speakers you can get up to 10 Watts per speaker. In fact, the wattage rating of this amp (2 x 20 Watts rms) is truly false. The power supply that comes with this amp gives 2 Amps at 12 Volts. At a power efficiency of 90% you'll get 2 x 10 Watts rms at the most. However, if you have some fairly small speakers then you may be fine. Otherwise, spend a little more and buy another amp.
2) This amp DOES NOT connect to many newer TVs which often no longer have analog RCA outs. Instead you'll either need to get an SPDIF-to-RCA converter or an amplifier such as the Amphony 250 or similar model that has an optical input which is compatible with TVs. My TV luckily does have RCA outs but be sure to check if your TV does.
3) The enclosure of this amp is fairly bulky and not exactly high quality. I opened up the enclosure and found that most of the interior is empty. What a waste of space! Also, there are some gaps and areas where Lepai could have spent a little more attention to detail in terms of quality. The knobs are fairly basic too and tend to come loose.
4) The rear speaker connector easily snaps out of its socket and doesn't accept thicker speaker wire easily. So you'll have to stick to fairly thin speaker wire.
To summarize, if you really cannot afford more than $20 on an amp then the Lepai is a decent choice. But don't expect the amp to drive larger speakers.
I mounted this outside in a plastic enclosure to weatherproof it. After sealing the wire holes and securing the amplifier to the enclosure, I was very pleased with what turned out. The intent is to basically leave this outside 365 days a year, and this amplifier drives two rock speakers on opposite sides of the garden.
Set up is quite fool-proof. I do find I have better sound overall when I use the RCA inputs vice the 1/8" connector directly to the output of the iPhone/iPod that we use, but I assume that's because of the attenuation provided by the RCA inputs.
I am not impressed when I really crank the volume. There is definite distortion past 80/90% and I haven't been able to mitigate that with adjusting the volume on the device very well.
That's by no means a show-stopper because the intent of using simple rock speakers is to have ambient music in the background, not push a couple Mach II's (five points for the reference).
The single biggest complaint I have is the power supply is obviously fickle. If it moves around, just a little bit, the power goes on and off. That's a bit disturbing. I've compensated by laying down some silicon ensuring that nothing moves around, but it's not ideal. The power connector looks actually worn after the initial set up, which is unimpressive.
All and all I really like this little guy. It's not perfect, but it works. The picture is of the very simple enclosure that I placed this in. I couldn't see doing this another way that would allow me to keep a separate amplifier outside all year long. And this plus the speakers, was still significantly less than a set of wireless speakers (plus I get to use what I've got).
Other thoughts: I would NOT use this to replace my home stereo, and the little blue light doesn't bother me at all. In fact, since it's outside, it's nice to know when one of us left it turned on.
I have left it powered on for about a week now, occasionally playing music and sound effects through it, and the sound is pretty good. No qualms there. I don't know if there is a problem with the volume potentiometer or what, but when I am adjusting the volume right channel cuts out regularly. If I press the knob in I can get it to stop cutting out. This could be a deal breaker for future purchases for me, as I was hoping to use them for audio installations that are up for multiple months. I will update after a month to see if it has any other problems.