How to Choose Amplifier Modes
So you have the PA speakers and an amplifier. How do you choose amplifier modes? If you’re too embarrassed to ask your friends, read on.
Amplifiers feature 3 modes: mono, stereo and bridged. Because performance scenarios determine which amplifier mode to use, we’ll give you a few situations so that you can choose the proper mode for your next performance.
Should you have only one input for your amplifier, choose the mono mode. In this situation, the mono amplifier mode allows you to use one input while allowing output on both amp channels. Some amplifiers do not have a mono switch, in which case you have the option to use a splitter cable to use both inputs from a single output.
In instances where you use both the left and right inputs on your amplifier, choose stereo mode. DJs more commonly use this mode. What’s more, stereo mode helps provide true stereo separation between the amp inputs and outputs.
When you use one input channel of the amplifier to combine power from both channels’ output into one single output, choose bridged mode. Bridged mode is usually used when powering subwoofers. By using bridge mode on your amplifier, you can boost power while ensuring that you are not exceeding the ohm load.
If you are ever in doubt, you can always check with the manufacturer to discover the minimum and maximum ohm load ratings. Different manufacturers use different methods to achieve mono, stereo, or bridged settings. Check the owner’s manual or contact the manufacturer of your amplifier if you are unsure of how to hook it up.