Concept

Preamplifier

Summary
A preamplifier, also known as a preamp, is an electronic amplifier that converts a weak electrical signal into an output signal strong enough to be noise-tolerant and strong enough for further processing, or for sending to a power amplifier and a loudspeaker. Without this, the final signal would be noisy or distorted. They are typically used to amplify signals from analog sensors such as microphones and pickups. Because of this, the preamplifier is often placed close to the sensor to reduce the effects of noise and interference. Description An ideal preamp will be linear (have a constant gain through its operating range), have high input impedance (requiring only a minimal amount of current to sense the input signal) and a low output impedance (when current is drawn from the output there is minimal change in the output voltage). It is used to boost the signal strength to drive the cable to the main instrument without significantly degrading the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR)
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