It’s possible to run a 4-ohm speaker as 8-ohm speakers as long as you have the knowledge of how the impedance operates. Any speaker’s ohm rating is simply its active impedance plus lively acoustic program. If you are careful, you can convert a 4-ohm speaker to an 8-ohm speaker.
While breathing, it’s always advisable to give trials to various DIY jobs. This article will therefore equip you with necessary information so that you comfortably enjoy the feeling of an 8-ohm speaker from a 4-ohm one. Therefore, after you are through reading the article, the knowledge and skills will be flowing.
Under this article we shall take you through a comprehensive guide to make 4-ohm to 8-ohm speakers at your comfort zone. These steps are easy to follow, but you should have some essential tools at hand. Besides, the journey won’t be long, meaning that you don’t have to worry about consuming much of your time.
Before we officially kick off our discussion, it’s advisable to have basic knowledge concerning the ohm conversion. Below are some considerations that I thought you should know;
Speaker impedance: In modern days, a good number of speakers operate with 16 ohms since they paired well with the tube amplifiers. After some years, 8 ohm speakers were introduced and paired well with transistor amplifiers. They were the best because they were associated with impressive output power balance, low distortion, volume, and fidelity.
Afterwards, automotive stereos came with speaker drivers, stretching up to 4-ohm impedance. You can achieve a lot of things from these speakers, but now the sound quality becomes a problem. Yes, and this is because their driver voltage can’t exceed 12-volt DC. Nowadays, automotive amplifiers can jack their voltage supply, which is mostly experienced by DJs on the streets. With an amp meant for 8-ohm speakers, there might be excess current flowing to the amplifier. This is dangerous as it can burn the output transistors of the same amp.
Therefore, it’s very important to understand the output limitations of your amp. More so, you should know the foundation for converting speaker impedance.
Parallel vs. series connected: Playing with the configuration and drivers of a system is the best way to achieve desired impedance. For instance, if you use the series method to connect two 4-ohm speakers to an amplifier, then the system impedance becomes 8 ohms. On the other hand, if you connect the same speakers to an amp, but in parallel, you will get 2 ohms.
Protect the amp: Since converting a 4-ohm speaker to an 8-ohm amp isn’t an easy task, using any 8-ohm speaker plus an amplifier meant for 4 ohms can be the best idea. However, cranking the highest volume can be lower.
Converting 4 ohm speaker to 8 ohm
There are some necessary materials and tools that you require like;
Method 1: Run a speaker cable to the 1st 4-ohm speaker from the 8ohm amplifier. Under this step, you require a total of two 4-ohm speakers since a single cabinet tends to overheat any 8-ohm amplifier. Make sure you’ve connected the cables to the right jacks (output) and not non-amplified output.
Connect the remaining cabinet. Just use the above procedure to connect the second speaker to the amplifier. The amplifier will now be operating at 8 ohms. In case you decide to opt for parallel connection, add each cabinet’s impedance to get the total impedance. For our case, we get 8 ohms after adding 4 ohms to 4 ohms.
Method 2: Alternatively, you can connect your two 4 ohms speakers to a single cabinet, but in series. Opting for this method will increase the impedance from 4 ohms to 8. For you to achieve best results, you should wire the speakers in series. It’s simple since you only have to follow the instructions.
Now, it’s time to connect the 8-ohm speaker to the 8-ohm amp. Using this procedure will enhance the watts amount being channeled to your speaker cabinet.
Method 3: Use of Impedance matching device. The next method is to use any available ohm matching gadget. Connect the speaker wire to the amplifier via the device, whereby you are required to run a wire from the amp to the device. Run another wire (speaker) to the 4 ohm cabinet. Opting for this method is vital since it balances ohms that can be handled by your amp. The impedance will be changed to be recognized by your amplifier to 8-ohms.
Although these devices are pricier, you can get one to minimize overheating.
You might be interested to read our another comprehensive article of: How to Convert 4-Ohm Speaker to 8-Ohm
- How can I determine 4 ohm impedance?
It’s very simple. When running in series format from a cabinet to the other, find the sum of the two cabinets. For example if it’s 4 ohms, take 4 plus 4, is equal to 8 ohms. Connect the 8-ohm speaker to the 8-ohm amp. Using this procedure will enhance the watts amount being channeled to your speaker cabinet.
- What is the precaution when converting a 4-ohm speaker to 8?
As much as this process is possible, you can sometimes experience negative results like distortion if not careful. Therefore, during the connection, you should avoid running an amp below its lowest impedance rating. Failure to consider this trick may expose the device to overheating which may result in permanent damage to your electronic components. You should therefore never attempt such a mistake.
- Between 8 and 4 ohm speakers, which one is the best?
It depends on the type of amplifier you are using, but generally, any 4-ohm speaker consumes much power from the amp compared to 8 ohms. For this case, an 8 ohms speaker is associated with less power consumption, but produces the same sound quality and volume level.
You can easily make a 4-ohm speaker to 8-ohm with the help of our article. However, during the process, you are advised to utilize big speaker cables for lowering impedance that can cause damage. With the above basic knowledge and a few methods, hopefully you succeed in making 4 ohm speakers 8 ohm.