Hi, so this question has kind of been bothering me lately in regards to audio receivers, Say a 5.1 receiver is rated at 50 watts per channel, and you have 5 speakers hooked up. Does the receiver know how much power to send each speaker? For example, say my center channel is only rated at 10 watts, is the receiver sending only 10 watts, or is it sending 50 watts to those speakers? If it is, it kind of seems like a waste of power. Thanks
The amount of power that the receiver puts out into each speaker is determined by the overall volume you are playing the system at and the sound engineers multichannel mix. The 50 watt per channel figure is a maximum that is rated according to FTC rules. You don't use the power unless you need to.
Speaker power ratings are usually given as a minimum and maximum and are just general guidelines. You can damage a speaker with too little power as well as with too much power.