What Does a Sonic Maximizer Do? (Do You Really Need One)

Audio loss, distortion, and delay can ruin your music listening experience. It is really easy to face this issue with average speakers. But there are ways you can fix it. And to address these issues, comes the contribution of the sonic maximizer. 

So, what does a sonic maximizer do?

A sonic maximizer is a part of your audio components along with the amplifier. Its job is to increase the clarity, brightness, and fullness to the sound. It enhances your audio listening experience. It also eliminates delay, lag, and distorted audio signals. 

There are more about how you can use a sonic maximizer. We have given a full description in detail below. So why don’t you jump in!

What Is a Sonic Maximizer and What Are the Purposes?

Getting the best sound out of your hi-fi speaker can take a lot of components. Sonic maximizers are not a must-have component with your amplifier and equalizer. But the tool improves the listening experience. 

Source: Audio Equipment Talk

Let’s dive into the bbe sonic maximizer history for a brief moment. 

A sonic maximizer processes the single-channel audio output. It also increases the clarity, brightness, and fullness of the sound. In one word it enhances the listening experience. 

Sonic maximizers can be used with either mid-range or high-range speakers. The drivers of the speaker will produce better sound with the sonic maximizer.

When the audio signal is transferring through, the perfect order might be lost. The higher or lower frequencies might be delayed. This will cause a brutal listening session for the listener. 

Before the invention of the sonic maximizer, it was difficult to fix this problem. But now it can be fixed with it. And you’ll get a harmonic listening experience. 

The BBE 500 sonic maximizer is an all-analog mono-channel signal processor. It is mainly used with the 500 series rack. The 500 series rack is made by many manufacturers these days. 

The best bbe sonic maximizer is known as the 822i. It’s not only the best but also the most popular one. But the 482i sonic maximizer is known as good as well. The close competition of this is behringer sonic maximizer. 

What Else Do You Need with a Sonic Maximizer?

Let alone a sonic maximizer cannot run a speaker system. You need a set of speakers and amplifiers as well. But you might be thinking, is bbe sonic maximizer worth it?

Hi-fi audio speakers do not have any processing unit built on them. In the speaker housing, the drivers are connected with cables. The cables need to be connected with the amplifier afterward. 

Amplifiers convert the digital audio to analog audio and feed them to the speakers. Also, an audio DAC enhances the sound which is going to the speaker. The amplifier can have a few audio-enhancing properties such as a maximizer.

You might be thinking, are DACs any good? A DAC can enhance the audio to the next level. So getting a separate DAC can be worth it. If you are planning to buy one, you can consider one of the DACs listed below:

All of these DACs are highly capable at amplifying the bass. Any of these DAC will enhance your audio listening sessions. 

Such as reducing and increasing the high and low frequencies. You can also have an equalizer in the rack. bbe sonic maximizer for home stereo is also an excellent option.

What Are the Front Panel Controls?

You need to connect the sonic maximizer properly before you turn it on. Firstly, you need to set it up in the rack you have. You’ll be able to reach the cables in the back of the sonic maximizer. 

Connecting a sonic maximizer is really easy. You have to connect the cables in the back. And the controls of the sonic maximizers are at the front.

So what are the controls of a sonic maximizer? There are 5 things to look for in the controls of the sonic maximizer. We have listed them below. 

LED Display

There is a huge difference between LED and LCD.

The led display shows the level of the signal output of the sonic maximizer. The signal level is measured at decibels. You might see that the numbers are labeled as Db or dBu. 

You will find 2 LED displays on each side of the front panel. There are labels for right and left channels on each side. When you turn the sound system on, the light will illuminate. Adjusting the LO contour and the processor knob will change the LED display light. 

At the very end of each LED display, you’ll find a light labeled as the clip. This shows the input level of the sonic maximizer. When the output level is +20dBu the light will flash. This indicated too much input.

Too much input can result in distortion of sound. 

LO Contour

You might be interested to know:

What does a Sonic maximizer do for bass?

Each of the 2 channels of the sonic maximizer has LO contour knobs. LO contour knobs control the low frequencies of the output sound. In easy terms, this is the control for bass. 

You can correct the bass level of low frequencies by using this knob. 


Like the Lo contour setting, there are 2 process knobs on each side. 1 of each of the knobs controls the high frequencies of a channel. Or in easy words, the treble of the speaker. 

If the sound is cracking at high frequencies, use this knob to correct the distortion. 

BBE Function

This button allows you to see the comparison between processed or unprocessed sounds. You’ll also find 2 LED lights on each side of the button. These buttons are labeled as in and out. 

When the button is in the sound is being processed. And when the button is out the sound is not being processed. Also, when it is on the light will be green. But when the light is yellow. 


The power button of the sonic maximizer sits at the very right of the front panel. This is as easy as it sounds, it turns the sonic maximizer on. 

Source: worthpoint.com

What are the Rear Panel Connections?

The front panel contains all the controls for output and input. But you need to plug all input and output cables at the back. To do so, you need to know which cables go where. 

So, how to connect bbe sonic maximizer? There are 4 things which you should remember. 

AC Power Cord Inlet

At the very left of the back panel, you’ll find the power port. Like all the other components, the sonic maximizer needs its own power. 

The sonic maximizer needs 100-120Vac, 50/60 Hz. Although, this is only applicable to the Japanese and Canadian models. All the other region models need 220-240Vac, 50/60 Hz power.   


Fuse is the safety component for the sonic maximizer. At the bottom of the power port, you’ll find the fuse. 

If a high surge of electricity ever hits the machine, the fuse will disrupt the flow. This will save your machine from breaking down. 

If you ever need to replace the fuse, you’ll only need a flathead screwdriver. With the flat head screwdriver, you can pry the fuse of the holding. 


On the right side of the rear panel, you’ll find the input for channels A and B. There will be 2 ports. There will be a TRS ¼” stereo phone plug or XLR plug. But it is preferred to use only one of the ports. 

Both of the ports are balanced. Some signal loss might occur if 2 ports are used simultaneously. The impedance for the sonic maximizer is 14.7k Ohms. 

All of these are applicable for both channels. 


The output ports are similar to the input ports. The output ports are TRS ¼” stereo phone plug and an XLR plug. You can use both ports simultaneously if they are balanced

Source: audiofanzine.com

The preferred signal load impedance is 10k Ohms. but in terms of 2 port usage, 22k ohm is necessary. 

The maximum output rate is +23dBu. Even though the output impedance of BBE 882i is 600 Ohms that depends on the input. This depends on the position of the sonic maximizer and input signal level. 

If both the XLR and phone jack are being used, both need to be balanced. Or else, signal loss can happen. 

That’s everything you need to know about the sonic maximizer. 


Is Sonic Maximizer Like a Loudness button on a Hi-Fi Amplifier?

It might seem like a sonic maximizer being like and loudness button, but it is not. A job of a sonic maximizer is much more than just controlling the loudness. Sonic maximizer gives you fine-tuning control which you’ll not get in the amp. 

Is Sonic Maximizer a Must-Have in My Audio System?

These days having a sonic maximizer is not completely necessary. Modern amplifiers and digital audio signals are broad enough to carry more information. But a sonic maximizer will make the audio listening experience better. 

How Much Does a Sonic Maximizer Cost Around?

The bbe 882i sonic maximizer price is under $200. Most of the systems use BBE 882i. You can find a sonic maximizer to purchase online, or you can get one in your local audio accessories store. 


That’s everything you need to know about what a sonic maximizer does. It’s really simple to understand the function. 

It is not a must-have component, but it will improve the listening experience. 

Have fun with your sonic maximizer!

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