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Speaker Specification Guide Part 3 – RMS

Marchall JCM 2000 DSL 100 Repaired and ServicedRMS explained

What is RMS?

RMS is an abbreviation of the term “Root Mean Square”.

When you purchase speakers they will come with a rating. Good quality speakers always come with an RMS rating, this is the the power capability of the speaker before distortion occurs. Beware of some cheaper speakers which say they are ” 1000watt” for example, this is Peak Power Output, and is basically what the speakers will cope with with distortion and is useless in most circumstances.

How Much Power Can a Speaker Take?

If you consider a guitar set-up for example, most quality speakers are rated at RMS this is the only rating which we consider relevant when choosing speakers. For example:

a 50Watt RMS speaker will handle a 50Watt RMS amplifier.

However running a 50watt amp through a 50watt speaker at the amplifiers maximum capacity for long periods of time will eventually destroy the speaker, as the coil of wire within the speaker will overheat and burn out.

To overcome this we recommend you use twice the capability of speakers for the amplifier you are using.

For example for a 50watt RMS amplifier, you should use 100watt RMS of speaker.

Therefore the speakers will never reach the point of working so hard that the coils overheat, and they should last a lifetime.

Return To page 1 of  the speaker specification guide.

Further Reading

Wikipedia  –