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Origin of amplifier

First recorded in 1540–50; amplify + -er1 Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for amplifier

loudspeaker, amp

Examples from the Web for amplifier

Contemporary Examples of amplifier

Historical Examples of amplifier

British Dictionary definitions for amplifier


  1. an electronic device used to increase the strength of the signal fed into it
  2. such a device used for the amplification of audio frequency signals in a radio, etc
  3. photog an additional lens for altering the focal length of a camera lens
  4. a person or thing that amplifies
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for amplifier

1540s; agent noun from amplify. Electronic sense is from 1914; shortened form amp is from 1967.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

amplifier in Culture


In electronics, a device that takes a small electric signal and converts it into a large one. Amplifiers are used in stereo systems, electric guitars, and loudspeakers.

The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.