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1St Gen Audio Questions

massacre

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Thank you for the helpful advice!
 
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toypaseo

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I would suggest that if you purchase online, make sure the seller is factory authorized to sell that brand. If you have problems, and they are not factory authorized, you might have to directly send them the faulty equipment, might have shorter warranty, might have issues trying to even get them to service it.

When I bought my Kicker DX350 amp off eBay, it was from a factory authorized dealer. The amp had a one year warranty, but three years if it was installed by a factory authorized dealer. They provided me with a receipt showing they installed it :shifty:. A few months before the three years was up, the amp quit. I contacted Kicker, and they sent me to a local repair shop. Showed them the receipt, and the fix was free :thumbsup:
 

massacre

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Thank you, you guys are helping me a lot and I appreciate it!
 

toypaseo

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In my Budget Bass project, I wanted to not lose any cargo space, and wanted nothing to see for prying eyes. Head unit is OEM. I used an OEM enclosure I bought from a junkyard. Opening was carved out to accept an 8" sub. Amp is mounted under the rear seat on the driver's side. Not going to win any competitions with the setup, but adds enough bass to keep things interesting.





 

massacre

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OK so I removed my head unit just to see what I am dealing with.
It is a Clarion CZ101
Looks like there is a conversion harness in there for the 4 door speakers, kind of a rat’s nest to be honest. This plugs into the plastic connector in the back of the radio.
There is one white RCA connector with a small tag that says Rear Left/Sub Out
There is another wire with no tag that is bare and has no connector on it. I am assuming this is the Rear Right/Sub Out and should have a red RCA connector on it. I have some male RCA cables I can steal an end off of if I need to.

So the head unit puts out 45w RMS x 4
Speakers in all 4 doors are 65w RMS
Is this why they don’t sound good turned up loud and distort?

Would I be better off getting a head unit that can put out 65w RMS x4 and using an amp for the subs only? Do they even make head units capable of this? After finding missing connector, and the unit is 10 years old i’m not married to it. It it does have an 1/8” aux jack that I plug my iPod into which I would like to keep if possible.

Or do I need to use an amp no matter what?

Am I better off getting 2 amps? 1 smaller one for the 64w RMS door speakers, and a bigger one for the subs and using a distribution box?
Or can I get 1 big amp that can power everything? Would I need a 5 channel amp?

Looks like I will be replacing everything at this point so my budget just went up a little bit lol. I feel like a box would be better than mounting subs in the panels, just because I feel like they might rattle too much. I have a rubber cargo pad that should be ok for a box.

I’m getting ready to pull the trigger on some of these parts so just trying to decide what to do.
Thanks in advance.
 

Mbrooks420

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The deck may say 45 watts, but it’s really not. Look at the size of a quality 50x4 amp, it’s way bigger than a single DIN headunit.

Plus, at high volume it’s probably fairly distorted.
 

massacre

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Ok great, thanks!
I’ll look into two separate amps. 1 that has 4 channels for the 4 door speakers, and then a separate one for the subs.
Another question- I would want a 2 channel amp for the subs, correct? Left and right?
Or do I run it in mono?

Thanks
 

toypaseo

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gmanpaint

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Why not pick out a new HU that has all the bells and whistles you need, want, and for later use?

Just a suggestion....
Since your undecided, and nobody can know your personal preference but you, I suggest getting a unit with 2 RCA amp output jacks. 1 amp for the sub, and one for the door amp. Buy a sub amp only, and run it. Then decide if you don't like it or not. If not, add a 4 ch amp later for the doors. More work, but not that bad really. You can set a 2 ch amp to mono for a single sub, or use both ch for 2 subs. Amp should come with the 2ch/mono switch.

A good set of door speakers will make a huge difference in sound, with or without an amp. They can sound great using the HU power supply only, and today's HU supply is typically sufficient for mids and highs. Some sound better with more power, some don't. Minimal THD on both the HU & amps are important for clean sound, the lower the better. Don't go by the high wattage they boast, as that is just peak watts. Real watts are much, much lower.

I run a sub amp only in the DD, but I have changed the door speakers to RF component 6.25" round, and separate tweets using adapter plates. These make more mid range bass then the 5x7's do. They can also take more power if I ever decide to add another amp for them. I like how it is now, and am very happy with it as is. But... this is my personal preference, not yours.

To me, sound quality is way more important then how loud it goes. I could care less if the people on the next block can hear it. That's actually very annoying. Having so much bass that it drowns everything else out is also annoying. Balancing it all out is where it's at for me. My Dbl Din HU can set the distance from my ears to each speaker in inches, and time each speaker to fire so I hear them all in unison. I want to hear that drumstick tap the symbol as much as the bass drum getting hammered.

Get rid of all that factory wiring, including the speaker wires. Replacing 25 year old factory wires with new shielded, better gauge wires with no breaks, splices, etc.. will make a big difference. Take your time with it, and enjoy doing it. If you have to rush any part of this work, shortcuts will happen, and quality will suffer as a result.
 

Mbrooks420

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It depends. A lot of people use a mono amp to drive 2 speakers. Bass isn’t terribly directional, and it typically pulls more watts out of the amp. (Lower ohm load). You could also use a 4 channel, and bridge them, granted it’s a bridgeable amp.
 

Mbrooks420

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Gman makes very valid points. A beginner level head unit is quite affordable these days.

And, even if you keep it, I’d gut the wiring and start over.
 
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massacre

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So I am looking into this amp.

https://www.amazon.com/Rockford-Fos...ywords_six_browse-bin:7933267011&s=car&sr=1-2

I think the amp in the head unit is distorting the speakers, so I am thinking a better 4 channel amp for the door speakers will at least get my money’s worth out of them. I can put in a distribution block and run the sub wiring at the same time, but i feel like if the current speakers can get a nice clean input, I may not need a sub. Or I might only need a small sub.

But there’s no way to know what I will actually need until the current speakers are working properly with a nice clean signal and I can hear how they perform.
 
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massacre

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Looks like that amp is 74w RMS x 4 at 4ohms. Speakers are 65w 4 ohm speakers.

Thought I saw a formula of amp rating being 150% of speaker rating?
If so I might go for something slightly more powerful.
 

toypaseo

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It’s good advice to run all new wiring. I would not even consider involving OEM wiring.

There are a lot of different amp setups you could use. One amp, two, three, four, five...

Not the “ideal” setup, but in my Paseo, I run a Kicker mono amp to a 2ohm Kicker Solobaric sub. One Fosgate Punch 60 two channel amp for all cabin speakers. One channel per side, running in parallel. 657 watts in this configuration.
 

toypaseo

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My old school audio advice might be not the best, so take it with a grain of salt.

I would get a more powerful amp if possible, and turn the gains down. Better than having a lower power amp and maxing out the gain.
 

massacre

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Yes that is what I am realizing, having more power results in better quality sound not just volume
 

Mbrooks420

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Typically, Rockford Fosgate is a solid choice with amps, but the Prime series has a little more problems than I’d like.

I’m old skool, and have always had a soft spot for made in the USA Zed Amps. When my rear speakers get installed I’ll be using something like:
Eclipse 36401 4/3/2 Channel Amplifier | eBay

This is my first setup in AGES that has rear speakers.
 

Mbrooks420

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Join the Elite Explorers for $20.

Explorer Forum has probably saved you that much already, and will continue to save you money as you learn how to diagnose fix problems yourself and learn which modifications work without having to experiment on your own. Elite Explorer members see practically no advertisements, no banner ads, no double underlined links, can add their own profile photo, upload photo attachments in all forums, and Media Gallery, create and save more private Conversations, and more. Join Today. Your support is greatly appreciated.


gmanpaint

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That RF 400 amp you linked from Amazon is the same I use for my door speakers on the trail rig. Works just fine at any volume, after adjusting the gains on it. I had the old school 90's era RF amp before that one, and it works/sounds just as good. Price is right for what it does.
 
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