Can i hook up an amp to my stock radio

Can i hook up an amp to my stock radio

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Can You Wire in Multiple Amps, or Are Are You Limited to Just One?

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Buck Pomerantz I've been tinkering with electronics ever since I was a kid - starting with taking apart and putting back together televisions and radios. I always got them back together again and working. I took courses in radio and electronics as a teenager, and became a ham radio operator. I worked in my high school's stage crew, running sound, lights, and a movie projector.

After college, I joined a rock 'n roll band as the soundman and learned how to lug around and operate the gear that helps make music sound good and loud. Working in a music store in Austin, Texas, I spent a few years manufacturing, installing, repairing, and operating sound systems. Our customers were recording studios, nightclubs, and touring bands. Eventually I moved back to Charlottesville, Virginia and opened a small demo recording studio.

In , I finally came to my senses and got this job at Crutchfield. They actually pay me to ramble on, rant, and explain the things I love about music, electronics, and getting good sound. Given my background, they put me to work writing about some of the most complex electronic products Crutchfield sells: Adding an amplifier to a factory stereo often requires running a lot of new speaker wire — from the stereo to the amplifier and then from the amp to the speakers. This can feel like an impossible nightmare.

Fortunately, we have a way to make it a little easier. If you have an aftermarket stereo, you'll use a set of RCA cables instead of one of the 9-wire cables below. The best way to connect it to a factory system is to tap into the stereo's speaker outputs for the amp's input signal. Then send the amp's outputs back to the stereo's harness, and on to the speakers through the factory wiring. Run two of these cables from the dash to your new amplifier.

You'll need one for the amp's input and the other for its output. These cables will act like a "T-harness" to connect your amp to the factory system. Behind the factory radio, you can access all of the speaker wires in one place. The radio's wiring harness delivers power to the radio and sends its output to the speakers. You'll need to identify which wire goes to which speaker.

Positive leads are usually solid-colored wires, while their accompanying negative leads tend to be the same color with a stripe of a second color. Please be aware that these wiring colors vary widely from one car to the next. If you purchase your new gear from Crutchfield, our Tech Support team can look up the wire colors for you.

Give us a call before you tear apart your dash, so you'll know what to expect. Once you've identified each of the eight speaker wires, cut each one. Connect the end coming from the radio plug to a new wire going to the amp's input. Connect the end going to the speakers to the appropriate wire coming from the amp's output. That means you'll use two of the 9-wire cables, one for the amp's input, the other for its output.

Even with my challenged eyesight and shaky hands it only took me about 40 minutes to wire this harness for illustration. Amplifiers that have speaker-level inputs also feature "signal-sensing turn-on. This means you don't use the ninth wire the blue wire of either cable for this installation. Crutchfield offers a foot and a foot version of EFX's 9-wire cable, to accommodate different sized vehicles.

We also carry a small selection of highly conductive, pure copper speaker wire , available by the foot. You can use that for connecting your amplifier to a factory system instead of the 9-wire cable, if you want. We really like the EFX cable because it's such an elegant and easy option because each set of speaker wires is color coded. You can make all the speaker connections without having to solder or crimp anything.

One package will cover this job and give you a few spares. For amps with more than 75 watts RMS of output per channel, it might be better to go ahead and run new or gauge speaker wires directly from the amplifier to each speaker. Factory speaker wires are very thin, with high electrical resistance. They can cause noticeable power loss when higher wattages try to get through.

But amplifiers of watts or less aren't really affected by this. Another popular way to connect an amplifier to a factory radio is to use something called a line output converter. It connects to the factory radio's speaker wires and converts the speaker-level signal to a preamp-level signal. A line output converter offers some advantages, like the ability to sum and control signals of a multi-channel factory system.

So if you're upgrading a complex system, using a line output converter might be your best option. The speaker wire solution we've shared here is a simpler, less-expensive alternative that will work for most people. Read more about line output converters. This article focused on a way to simplify the speaker connections. For information about other aspects of amplifier installation, like power and ground wiring, check out our Amplifier Installation Guide.

If you have any questions about connecting a new amplifier to your speakers, contact our advisors via chat or phone. They'll take the time to answer your questions and explain the details, then get you set up with whatever you need. Hi Buck. Thank you for ypur quick response. I recently asked a question about using speaker level inputs on my Boston GTA amp to power my factory speakers while still having control over balance and fader as well as subwoofer on the head unit.

Using rca splitters would decrease the voltage going to the amp. Is there no other way to do get this to work without replacing the head unit? Both amps have speaker level inputs. My head unit only has 2 pairs of RCA outs. What would be the best way to connect everything with minimal sound quality loss? Thank you in advance. Greatwrite up! I am tapped into the speaker outs after the amp, and connected to an AudioControl DQ Sometimes, the music cuts out when I turn on the car.

I've tried different resistors to simulate a load, but to no avail. Had a MTX 5 channel which I got thru you all. I had it installed and we can't figure out what is going on. He used a 4 channel line converter for the stock Hyundai tuscon radio. I also. It will fad to the rear but will NOT go to the right side speakers when level is all the way left. He says it's due to the factory radio but I am not buying this. I love my Music to be perfect and this is bugging me so much. Thanks for any suggestions.

Hi am am trying to install a amp into a Honda Accord and I'm not sure if there is a place for RCA wire and a remote wire would you no anything about that. I plan to run two 9-wire cables to connect the 4 speakers in the doors.

We're going to go over the basic steps what it takes to install an amp in a sub in of the factory stereo, which will plug in right here on our line output converter. If you're going to use your stock stereo and run the amp from there you . Can I hook up a loc to the rear speaker wires if there is a factory amp.

Most amps will come with a complete wiring kit. But if yours does not, you'll need the main power wire, an inline fuse use the size wire and fuse that the amp manufacturer recommends , a ground wire, RCA cables, speaker wires, remote turn-on wire and connector plugs to suit head unit, amp and speakers some units may just require bare-wire connections. The amount of space you have to work with will help determine the size amp you buy. A common place to fit an amp is in the trunk or luggage compartment of your car.

It's possible to add an amp to your car's factory audio system without having to buy an expensive new head unit CD player.

Stock car stereo systems usually do not pack much punch. To really highlight the bass of your car stereo, you need a setup capable of properly reproducing low frequency notes. Adding a subwoofer and amplifier to your existing stereo is a great way to improve the bottom-end output of your system and is one of the most common upgrades performed on a car's audio gear.

Installing a DIY Car Amplifier

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Buck Pomerantz

Installing an amplifier in your car's audio system can seem overwhelming, but installing one without RCA jacks can be downright intimidating. Older systems usually lack RCA jacks, but just because you have an older system does not mean you cannot add an amp for additional power to push your speakers or subwoofers. Before you begin the installation process, it's imperative that you make sure the amp you've chosen is capable of accepting speaker or line-level connections. Once you've double-checked these things, you're ready to start. Determine an ideal location for your amp inside the cabin or trunk of your vehicle. You can mount it on the back of a seat, on the sidewall, on the back of your subwoofer box or on the floor of the trunk away from any loose items that may damage the amp by shifting when the car moves. Open the amp wiring kit, which contains all the wiring you'll need to hook-up your amp. You will need to connect the lengthy, red wire to the positive terminal of the battery. This red power wire should be thicker than your speaker wire--typically 8-gauge works fine. Run the positive wire back towards the cabin of the car, avoiding sources of heat and areas that are likely to be splashed by water when driving in inclement weather.

Wiring up an amplifier to a stock radio is something that many of our customers do themselves.

By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy , Privacy Policy , and our Terms of Service. I am planning on installing an amplifier in my Mustang and hoping to keep the factory head unit for now. My amplifier supports high level input through the RCAs. Or at the speakers after factory amp.

Wiring in one amplifier can be complicated enough, especially when you're dealing with a factory car stereo, and the situation just gets more complex when you add multiple amplifiers to the equation. You can wire two amplifiers, or even multiple amps, in one car audio system, but it takes some extra planning. The main factors that you need to consider when you wire in two or more amps are how you will deal with the power cable, grounding each amp, and whether or not the remote turn-on signal from your head unit is strong enough to split between multiple amps. The short answer is that you can use any number or combination of power amps in a car audio setup as long as you wire them in properly. The main proviso is that the charging system has to be able to provide enough juice in the first place. If you add in too many amps, and they draw too much power, you may need to upgrade your alternator or install a stiffening cap. The most common reason to wire in multiple amps is to have one for your main speakers and a second amplifier for a subwoofer. If you do decide to go with multiple amps, the process of multi-amp wiring is similar to single amp setups. In terms of amp wiring, that means getting your power straight from the battery. With that in mind, you have the option to either run separate power cables for each amp, or a single cable that feeds all of them.

A sub woofer or two in a vehicle can make the world of difference in listening to music. It is very important to match the RMS of your subs to your amp. You want an amp more powerful than your sub, because you don't want your sub to clip. Clipping is the number one reason of bass distortion. To create this article, 35 people, some anonymous, worked to edit and improve it over time. This article has also been viewed , times. Learn more.

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Install AMP/SUB FACTORY RADIO Installation Without RCA Hook Up AMPLIFIER STOCK HEAD UNIT Car Stereo
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