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Programable vs Continuous

Discussion in 'Amps and Cabs [BG]' started by monroe55, Mar 24, 2009.

  1. monroe55


    Mar 17, 2009
    When I read some specs on cabinets, I notice that in the details on watts they often state a difference between "continuous" and "programable". My question is...what the h*ll does this mean???
  2. bongomania

    bongomania Commercial User

    Oct 17, 2005
    PDX, OR
    owner, OVNIFX and OVNILabs
    It's actually "program", not "programmable". Either way though, both specs are unfortunately meaningless. They are just fluff that helps sell speaker cabs.
  3. monroe55


    Mar 17, 2009
    Figured as much. Dam fluff.
  4. As Bongo says. Continuous is usually taken as meaning RMS output. Program is a musical source with loud bits, quiet bits and sometimes no bits at all! :)

  5. Bob Lee (QSC)

    Bob Lee (QSC) In case you missed it, I work for QSC Audio! Commercial User

    Jul 3, 2001
    Costa Mesa, Calif.
    Technical Communications Developer, QSC Audio
    Continuous power is the thermal rating of the loudspeaker. It's how much average (not RMS, as there's actually no such theing as "RMS power") power the loudspeaker can take over a sustained time period, such as an hour or 8 hours depending on the method prescribed by various standards. The different standards for measuring and calculating this will result in slightly different figures.

    "Program" power is generally what the loudspeaker manufacturer recommends as a maximum amp power rating to use with a particular loudspeaker, assuming that you will use it for normal audio such as music or voice, and not continuous tones, and will avoid significant clipping. "Program" power is usually about 1.5 to 2× the continuous rating.
  6. Thanks Bob, a much better explanation than mine. i also forgot we were talking about speakers!


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