For a school project we're using a uC with a DAC which outputs values between 0V-3.3V, which we want to amplify and feed into a speaker.
We haven't settled for a particular speaker but considering it would be mounted on a PCB it should be assumed to be a small 8~16Ohm one.
Now the DAC needs a minimum load of 1kOhm and it obviously can't be fed directly to the speaker so we were juggling a few options.
The first one was to use the widely available LM386 in the following configuration:
Blue signal is the DAC's output, green signal is the LM386's output, red signal is what reaches the speaker after the filter.
This seemed to be the easiest way but, it has a huge problem in that the DAC's output has to be limited to +-0.06V in the example, which cuts down the DAC's resolution and we assume introduces a lot of noise. Even with such a tiny signal the LM386 seems to be saturated on the top too, as it's cutting off the signal's peaks.
A second idea was to use an LM4811, which... we haven't even been able to find so we're not optimistic about even being able to get it, but it would work in a voltage follower configuration, letting us cut the DAC's output down to just 0V-1V. The problem here is I don't have a good LM4811 component model for the simulator so I'm not 100% sure of whether we need to alter the circuit's design further.
The question then, is: is there some way to get a better signal conditioning using the LM386 in our case, or any other widely available audio opamps we haven't considered? We don't need an amazing signal/noise ratio nor high specs at all since it's a project a bunch of first-timers should finish in a month, but we're not really experienced enough to tell exactly what we need here.
Thanks a lot in advance!
DAC electrical characteristics:
We're using an EDU-CIAA board (Spanish language link) which has an LPC4337 as its uC.