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Niles SI-1230 Series 2

12-channel multi-room power amplifier

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  • Niles SI-1230 Series 2

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Our take on the Niles SI-1230 Series 2

by Dave Bar
Niles

Flexibile power to meet your needs

Planning a whole-house audio system? Take a look at the Niles SI-1230 Series 2 multi-channel power amplifier. You can customize this powerful 12-channel amp to best suit your specific multi-room setup. Enjoy warm stereo sound in six rooms, or combine two channels into one to give your speakers more juice — a great option for power-hungry outdoor speakers. Use a single channel of power for mono sound in smaller listening areas, like a closet or bathroom.

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Enjoy music throughout your home

The '1230 Series 2 can distribute music from one audio source, like a networked music streamer, to multiple rooms in your home. Or you can connect additional sources directly to the amplifier and assign each one to a single listening room. And by adding one or more preamps to your system, you can send additional sources to more than one listening room.

Serious whole-house audio power

This amplifier provides your system with an impressive amount of power for big, room-filling sound. Driven simultaneously, all 12 channels produce 30 watts RMS, or 360 watts total. "Bridging" or combining adjacent channels gives you 80 watts for each bridged pair, or 480 watts total.

Highlights:

  • 12-channel amplifier
  • power output:
    • 30 watts RMS per channel into 8 ohms, all channels driven
    • 40 watts RMS per channel into 4 ohms, all channels driven
    • adjacent channels are bridgeable to 80 watts RMS into 8 Ohms, all channels driven
  • frequency response: 5-25,000 Hz (-3 dB)
  • signal-to-noise ratio: 102 dB (20-20,000 Hz)
  • total harmonic distortion: 0.05% (at 1kHz)
  • BusMatrix™ Selector allows four audio options for each channel: left, right, left plus right (mono), or the channel's dedicated input
  • independent level controls for all 12 channels
  • three turn-on modes: music sense, voltage trigger, and manual
  • gold-plated 5-way binding post speaker connectors spaced to accommodate dual banana plugs
  • cascade outputs for "daisy-chaining" amplifiers
  • independent thermal and short-circuit protection circuits for each channel
  • detachable AC power cord
  • weight: 35 lbs.
  • 17-1/4"W x 5-3/4"H x 17-1/4"D
  • warranty: 2 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Features and Specs
General
Number of Channels 12
Power Output per Channel (8 ohms) 30
Power Output per Channel (6 ohms) ---
Power Output per Channel (4 ohms) 40
Frequency Response 5Hz-25kHz
THD 0.05%
Bridged Power per Channel 80 (x 6 channels) watts
Speaker Outputs 12
THX Certification No
Width (inches) 17-1/4
Height (inches) 5-3/4
Depth (inches) 17-1/4
Weight 35 pounds
Parts Warranty 2 Years
Labor Warranty 2 Years
Inputs & Outputs
Number of Inputs 13
Level Controls Yes
Speaker Connectors Binding posts
Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • 12-Channel system integration amplifier
  • 6' AC power cord (3-prong IEC plug)
  • 2 Rack-mount ears
  • Installation Guide

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features

Overview: The Niles Audio SI (System Integration) Amplifiers are designed to power your custom-installed Audio-Video system. They are constructed with the finest materials available, including 1% metal film resistors, high quality capacitors, and oversized heat sinks, that can properly cool the unit without the need for a noisy fan. The SI-1230 Series 2 is a high-current 12-channel amplifier that can help you interface multiple sources into multiple zones.

BusMatrix Selectors: Each of the amplifier's 12 channels are fully configurable. The unique BusMatrix selector found on each channel on the back panel, allows each channel to select the left bus input, right bus input, left + right bus inputs in summed stereo, or the channel's dedicated input via dip switches. Each channel also has independent rotary level controls.

Power Output: The SI-1230 Series 2 12-channel power amplifier provides 30 watts RMS per channel at 8 ohms, and 40 watts RMS per channel at 4 ohms with all channels driven. You can bridge adjacent channels to 80 watts RMS into 8 ohms.

Line Level Inputs: The SI-1230 Series 2 amplifier has a single gold-plated RCA input jack for each channel, plus a stereo bus input. If you are bridging any of the adjacent channel pairs, the single input from the even-numbered channel is used. The bus input provides an audio signal to all 12 channels.

Cascade Audio Outputs: The unit's Cascade Audio Outputs enable you to daisy-chain another amplifier, by connecting the preamp output of the SI-1230 Series 2 to the input of the second amplifier. The outputs are not buffered, so if you wish to daisy-chain more than 5 Niles SI Amplifiers, you will need a buffered distribution amplifier, such as the Niles AVDA-3.

Bridging Adjacent Channels: The amplifier's 12 channels are configured in pairs (1&2, 3&4, etc.). Each channel can be used independently (30 watts) or bridged to provide more power (80 watts) to speakers in large rooms or for outdoor speakers. Each pair of channels has a bridging switch, which can be activated to provide a more powerful speaker output.

Speaker Terminals: The amplifier is equipped with binding post speaker terminals. The terminals will accept single- and dual-banana plugs, pin connectors, and bare wire up to 12-gauge. For most applications, 16- or 18-gauge wire is recommended. For wiring runs longer than 80 feet, 14-gauge wire is recommended.

Note: The speaker terminals have a collar around them that prohibits the use of spade lugs.

Speaker Loads: Each channel can drive a 4-ohm load, allowing you to connect no more than two 8-ohm speakers, or no more than one 4-6 ohm speaker. A channel pair that has been bridged can handle an 8-ohm load. Proper ventilation of the amplifier is required when driving lower impedance loads or if bridging channels.

Independent Level Controls: The SI-1230 Series 2 has independent level controls for each channel, allowing you to set the volume in each zone, or compensate for sonic imbalances created by room size or architecture. You can also use the volume controls to limit the volume to certain zones to prevent abuse.

Turn-on Modes: For convenience, the SI-1230 Series 2 offers three turn-on modes. Using the 3-way switch on the back panel, you can choose from the following modes:

  • Manual Turn-on: The amplifier is turned on and off using the front panel Master power switch. The automatic turn-on circuitry is turned off. (Switch position: Constant)
  • Music Sense: The amplifier turns on automatically when the presence of an audio signal is detected on any of the audio inputs. When the audio signal is no longer detected, the amplifier turns itself off after approximately 2 minutes. (The front panel Master switch must be in the On position, and the Turn-on Mode switch position is set to Audio Sense.)
  • External Trigger: The amplifier turns on automatically when a signal is detected at the 3.5mm AC/DC trigger input. Once the Trigger voltage is turned off, the amplifier automatically turns itself off. Voltage triggers can be supplied by a variety of sources, including surround sound processors, video projectors, and automated switchers. The trigger signal must be 3-24 volts AC or DC, 20 mA or greater. (The front panel Master switch must be in the On position, and the Turn-on Mode switch position is set to 3-30V AC/DC Trigger Input.)

12-volt Control Output: In addition to the 12-volt Trigger Input, the SI-1230 Series 2 can be used to control other devices using 12-volt triggers, such as motorized screens and curtains. When the amplifier is powered on, a 12-volt DC (150 mA) signal is present at the 12V Control Out 3.5mm mini-jack. (Polarity: tip = +)

Rack-mount Ears: The SI-1230 Series 2 comes with a pair of rack-mount ears to allow you to mount the amplifier in a standard equipment rack. The rack ears attach to the sides of the amplifier chassis using the 4 installed screws. The amp requires three rack spaces (3U) with the feet removed.

Note: A minimum of 7" of free air space must be provided above the amplifier for proper ventilation.

Independent Protection Circuits: Each channel his its own independent thermal and short circuit protection. If a problem occurs on one of the channels, that channel will shut down, while the other channels continue to play. Once the short has been removed or the temperature returns to normal, the channel will resume regular operations. A bi-color LED on the front panel will glow red if the protection circuit has been activated, or green to indicate the amplifier is operating normally.

Removable AC Cord: The SI-1230 Series 2 comes with a 6' detachable, heavy-duty power cord that allows you to unplug it either at the amp or at the wall outlet. The amplifier uses an IEC 3-prong cord. The amplifier features an auto-switching, 110V-230V power supply.

 
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1 question already asked

Bought a Niles 1230 SI was running my IPhone thru the AMP and all was well and then one of the red lights with out and only one speaker in each room was operating.. Any suggestions? Thanks in advance [ tony cummings  May 27, 2014 ]
1 answer
  • If you purchased the product from Crutchfield, feel free to contact our Tech Support team. They can walk you through the settings on the product and see if there may be a fix. Our toll-free Tech Support number is printed on your invoice, and is also available under the "My Orders" tab in the "My Account" section of our website. If you did not purchase the unit from Crutchfield, then you may want to contact the manufacturer. You can also post your question in our forums: http://community.crutchfield.com. Or try our online support center: http://crutchfield.custhelp.com/app/answers/list/kw/. [ Krissy Staff  May 28, 2014 ]

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For a more in-depth review and enhanced detailed information on the Niles SI-1230 Series 2, please visit the Crutchfield website product page (/ISEO-rccbcspd/p_190SI12302/Niles-SI-1230-Series-2.html ).

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