How to Connect an Amplifier to a Receiver Without Pre-outs

Looking at the back of an AV receiver and wondering which connectors belong where and how to connect various devices might be a bit intimidating if you’re new to the audio game. Receiver pre-outs are required to connect your receiver to an external amplifier, which improves sound quality.

To connect an amplifier to a receiver, you need to have Pre-outs with that receiver. But what if your receiver doesn’t have pre-outs. In that case, there are more than several ways to connect your amplifier without any pre-outs. 

If you find yourself in this situation, check our post on How To Connect An Amplifier To A Receiver Without Pre-Outs for various possibilities. One of these will fix the problem, allowing you to listen to your favourite music as quickly as possible.

What Is A Pre-Out?

What Is A Pre-Out

Let’s get a quick glance at this.

This point will assist you if you are encountering this issue for the first time. Otherwise, feel free to proceed!!

Instead of using the receiver’s built-in amplifier, a pre-out allows you to connect an external power amplifier. It permits a signal to pass through the receiver without being amplified by another power source instead. Because the pre-out is designed to be linked to a power amp, it is generally a variable signal; however, because the power amp is conventionally fixed gain, moving the volume control varies the output signal level.

What Are The Considerations To Connect An Amplifier To A Receiver Without Pre-Outs?

What Are The Considerations To Connect An Amplifier To A Receiver Without Pre-Outs

The idea is that you have two systems that meet in the centre but don’t have too much of an influence on each other. That implies two amplifiers are required: one for surround sound and the other for stereo. If you wish to utilise an app that doesn’t have a dedicated AV input, you may do it by setting the volume control to the same level as your surround amp anytime you want to use it. That method is a little fussier and less exact, but it works perfectly.

You will, of course, require speakers. In this case, a surround package with front-left and front-right speakers with adequate hi-fi characteristics makes sense. An additional amplifier can be used if the user demands it. Pre-outputs can be established by connecting high-quality or high-level speaker efficiency to a decreased RCA data input adaptor if the customers do not have them.

How to Connect An Amplifier To A Receiver Without Pre-Outs

How to Connect An Amplifier To A Receiver Without Pre-Outs

Now let’s get down with our main event and learn about how you can fix the problems. Use the simple steps below.

Step 1: Using AUX

The aux inputs have a 10 k impedance, whereas the aux outputs have 75 to 150 k. The outputs have a -10 dBV nominal voltage level (0.300 VRMS). Headphone inputs range from 8 to 600 ohms, while headphone output ports range from 0.1 to 24 ohms.

Both this and the output on your iPod or MP3 player are 3.5 millimetres so that regular auxiliary cords will work. Some older amplifiers offer 6.35-millimetre inputs that are compatible with 1/4 inch headphone adaptors. Auxiliary cables with a diameter of 3.5 millimeters will not fit.

Simply connect the 3.5mm jack pin to the receiver and the RCA connections to the amplifier’s RCA inputs. This approach, however, will only produce stereo sound. If you’re utilising surround sound speakers, you’ll need a stereo to surround sound converter to send a multichannel signal to the amplifier.

Step 2: Using Headphone Jack

If your primary switcher device has a headphone jack, we recommend utilising it instead of any available Lightning or USB-C connectors to route your audio. If you need stereo, connect via the USB-C or Lightning connector on your smartphone. The built-in headphone amplifiers in most AV receivers are “good enough” for occasional listening. However, if you frequently use a good pair of headphones with your home theatre system or computer, I recommend upgrading to a high-quality headphone amplifier.

Step 3: Use The “tape rec”

You don’t even need a “pre-out” with the front L&R speakers right now because you’ve specified that you’ll need a preamp and a power amplifier. The receiver’s “tape rec” may be removed and put into the preamp, and this would send you a fixed output rather than a variation, and the preamp does actually regulate the work for things like the L & R front volume levels.

I’m not sure if you’ll receive only the whole stereo mix of an L&R recreated from the tape outcomes to that same preamp when you use the receptor to hear surround sound.

Step 4: Turn On The Power Amp And The Av Receiver

You can run a trigger wire from the power amp to the AV receiver if you want to switch on the power amp and the AV receiver simultaneously. This is a separate wire that will link in one port/jack on each item and be properly identified.

You may skip this step and go on to the next one if you choose to turn on the power amp and the AV receiver with separate buttons or switches. This will have no effect on the sound quality of your device, but it will make it easier to connect to power if you want to do so.


  • Question: Do I need a pre amp if I have a receiver?

Answer: If your receiver includes a phono input, you won’t need a phono preamp. If your record player has an inbuilt preamp, the same applies. The phono preamplifiers found in most receivers and turntables are of poor quality. A better output will almost always come from using an external preamp.

  • Question: Can I use another receiver as a preamp?

Answer: To use as a preamp, connect an old stereo receiver with normal connections. Preamplified devices such as CD players and tape decks can be connected to modern audio-video receivers through jacks. With conventional stereo cables and two tape-deck connectors, an ancient stereo receiver may be utilized as a preamp.

  • Question: Do all receivers have preamps?

Answer: A phono preamp is not incorporated into most contemporary amplifiers and receivers. If you link everything up and everything sounds good, you have a built-in phono preamp, exactly like with one built into your turntable. If your turntable has one, remember to attach the ground wire as well.

  • Question: Can you hook up an amplifier to a receiver?

Answer: Almost any Integrated Amplifier should be able to connect to an AV Receiver. RCA cables are the only additional piece of equipment you’ll need to connect your Integrated Amplifier to an AV Receiver. Gather your Integrated Amplifier, AV receiver, speaker system, and RCA wires now.

Closing Words

Connectiong an Amplifier to a Receiver without any pre-outs, sounds a bit challenging.. But if you know the process, you can do it without any fuss. Pre-outs are popular nowadays, and they’re a lot easier to set up. They are, however, more costly, need more power, and have some sound problems.

Of course, the number of speakers that the AV receiver can handle is your only restriction here, since this is the final number of established connections that you will be able to make between all of the components in your sound system arrangement.

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