My name is Brandon and I'm new to the forum. In fact, I'm 19 and new to just about everything!
I never really much liked the music I grew up with and, like most people my age, whatever I heard was coming from iPods and MP3 players, mostly. Recently, my uncle got me into listening to his music on a killer "old time" stereo system (like, from the 90's) and I got completely hooked!
Since then I have been trying to learn about how stereos work and want to put together something for my room. I would mostly be listening to headphones for now but want to plan for the future when I get my own place. I was hoping that maybe you guys here could give me a sort of "Stereo 101" intro. Here's what I (think) I know:
The source takes the information from the media. If it is digital, it has to go to a DAC to convert it to analog. This signal goes to a preamp to step up the signal enough to go to a power amplifier. The power amp increases the signal power so that it can move the speakers to create sound waves we can hear. Is this about right?
Here's what I don't get: when you are using a preamp and a power amp and headphones, the headphones plug into the preamp. How does the signal from the power amp get back to the preamp and the headphones?