A Look at the Shrinking Size of Power Amplifiers

Power amplifiers have become smaller and smaller lately. This is not really a surprise as manufacturers are trying to incorporate multiple amplifiers into the same product. Part of the reason for amplifiers become smaller is the ongoing integration of discrete components into semi conductors. Especially for amplifiers which are often used, spending the extra money for creating an integrated circuit often makes sense.

Another reason for the shrinking size of power amplifiers is the fact that the efficiency has increased rapidly. This is because there has been a fundamental shift in technology. New amplifiers almost exclusively are switched mode amplifiers which means that power efficiency has increased to upwards of 90%. This as a result has lead to the reduction of the size of heat sinks which are required to ventilate excessive heat. Obviously, amplifiers which have low power efficiency will generate a vast amount of heat. Also, tube amplifiers are rather inefficient and require a lot of ventilation.

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