GaN Systems Introduces 200 W Class D Audio Amplifier with 96 % Efficiency

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GaN Systems has released the GeN2 amplifier and companion power supply reference design. This solution is optimized for sound quality, thermal performance, size, and cost. The evaluation kit includes a 2 channel, 200 W per channel (8 Ohm) Class-D audio amplifier with 96 % efficiency and companion 400 W continuous, 550 W peak power audio-grade SMPS. It enables audio design engineers to create premium audio products more quickly, reducing time to market and at affordable prices.

This GeN2 reference design features a 20 % overall size reduction in the power supply. It has a higher level of protection into lower impedance loads to the amplifier and provides better thermal management resulting in 10 °C temperature reduction. In addition to these enormous improvements, GeN2 also lowers bill of materials (BoM) cost.

As entertainment, music, and information have become a more significant part of all aspects of our lives, and with audio consumption at an all-time high, high-quality audio is now a “must-have” across all audio segments. Class-D audio systems with GaN technology provide better sound quality and are smaller and lighter.

The GeN2 reference design allows design engineers to develop a heatsink-less, self-powered (from AC line Input) design with no external DC supplies required and smaller size boards due to a high level of controller and DSP integration.

The reference design offers high efficiency across a wide load range using GaN transistors and advanced control techniques. Designers can quickly scale to a higher power with magnetics and GaN transistor selection. Additionally, the solution highlights an easy plug-and-play design with features such as multi-audio signal inputs, bridge-tied load output, and open-loop/closed-loop toggling.

Audio Innovation with GaN Systems

GaN Systems had launched their Class-D amplifier and companion SMPS kit in May 2020. Since then, their transistors have been implemented in several high-performance audio solutions, including the Syng Alpha Cell speaker, which was named one of TIME’s 100 Best Inventions of 2021 and in Orchard Audio’s Starkrimson Stereo Ultra amplifier and all-in-one Starkrimson Streamer Ultra.

In the Cell Alpha, GaN Systems’ transistors are designed into the power supply, which can deliver peak transients of nearly 750 W. The Cell Alpha power supply fits in any space, creates minimal heat, and supplies the system’s continuous and transient power requirements.

The Streamer Ultra system delivers commanding sound quality and performance in a discreet package, performing the same functions that once required a rack full of components. GaN Systems is helping the company achieve:

  • 5x-10x better THD+N
  • 20 dB better noise floor (system level)
  • 4x-5x better frequency response
  • 4x reduction in power loss

GaN Systems’ power transistors are key components of next-generation audio products. While 2021 marked a year where GaN was embraced in the industry, 2022 is anticipated to be even better. GaN Systems predicts an exponential growth of GaN in the Class-D audio market, and 2022 will mark a year when the biggest audio names will launch GaN audio products.

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