Difference between Amplifier and Receiver

An amplifier is an electronic device that is used to amplify an electrical signal without changing its other properties. It is used to amplify audio signals so that they can be played through loud speakers. It can be integrated into other appliance like a receiver or a home theatre system.

A receiver is a multi-functional electronic device that combines the functions of an amplifier and a tuner. It is the home theatre system's central control unit, responsible for receiving and processing audio and video signals from various sources such as cables, satellite boxes, and Blu-ray. These signals are received by the receivers and routed to the appropriate output devices, such as speakers or a display. It provides features such as volume control, tone control, and equalization in addition to amplification.

Read this article to find out more about Amplifier and Receiver and how they are different from each other.

What is an Amplifier?

An amplifier is also called an amp. It is used to amplify the audio and power signals. It is almost found in every electronic device. The input signal is a very weak electrical signal; when it is integrated with the amplifier, it generates the stronger output signal.

An amplifier is a two-port circuit that increases the amplitude of the input signal and provides the output as an amplified signal. An amplifier is measured by its gain. Electronic devices such as video equipment, audio equipment, radios, televisions, and sound reinforcement systems are some of the devices where amplifier is used.

There are various types of amplifiers available in the market, such as −

  • Voltage Amplifiers

  • Current Amplifiers

  • Power Amplifiers

  • Operational Amplifiers

Performance of an Amplifier

The performance of an amplifier is characterized by different parameters, as follows−

  • Gain − It determines the magnitude ratio of the input and output signals.

  • Stability − The ability to produce consistent and dependable results

  • Efficiency − The ratio of power consumed to power output

  • Noise − The amount of unwanted information fluctuated in the output signal.

  • Bandwidth − Range where the amplifier operates

  • Skew Rate − The maximum rate at which output changes

  • Distortion − The output signal deviates from the input signal.

  • Linearity − Input and output signals are proportional.

What is a Receiver?

A receiver is an electronic device that receives different types of signals. It can receive both analogue electromagnetic signals or waves and digital signals via wired media. The receiver is used in communication, specifically wireless communication in networking and cellular communication.

A receiver is the device that receives and decodes signals before transforming them so that another machine or computer can understand them.

There are various types of receivers available in the market, such as −

  • Stereo Receivers

  • Audio/Video Receivers

A power amplifier, a radio tuner, and a pre-amplifier are the three components of the receiver. It contains a demodulator, an antenna, and a tuner. Signals are converted into electrical signals using the antenna. The tuner receives the electrical signals which are converted in the antenna. Tuner removes the unwanted signals or noise and select the channel or frequency of the signal. The demodulator is used to convert the signal into radio waves that will be understood by an electronic device.

Difference between Amplifier and Receiver

The following table highlights the major differences between Amplifier and Receiver −





Here audio signals are amplified

The audio and video signal are processed here which are received through various sources

Additional Features

It doesn’t have any additional features

It contain the additional features such as tone control, control of volume, input switching, and equalization

Consumption of Space

Consumes the more space

Consumes the less space


Used to increase the audio signal strength

Process, receive, amplify audio and video signals


It is used as a standalone unit, it can be integrated or part of a larger system

Home theater system


In a nutshell, an amplifier is the best option if you want a simple way to amplify your audio signals. In contrast, a receiver is the best option if you want a more comprehensive audio solution with additional processing capabilities.