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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #26
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

There are very few things left to check, but the voltage of the audio signal feeding the amplifier is one you didn't mention testing yet. A quick and simple thing to try is play the same test tone in both cars and measure the AC voltage at the end of the RCA cable that plugs in to the amplifier. I have a feeling your Car will measure much lower than your wife's car.

You could also try playing a signal from a cell phone or portable music player instead of using the car's radios. Be sure to plug directly into the amplifier though, do not leave the MS-8 in the signal path. You mentioned when you tried this the Speaker made almost no noise, which is a big flag suggesting you investigate further since the headphone jack on a phone has plenty of signal to drive an amplifier if you turn the gain knob up high enough.

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #27
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jazzi View Post
There are very few things left to check, but the voltage of the audio signal feeding the amplifier is one you didn't mention testing yet. A quick and simple thing to try is play the same test tone in both cars and measure the AC voltage at the end of the RCA cable that plugs in to the amplifier. I have a feeling your Car will measure much lower than your wife's car.

You could also try playing a signal from a cell phone or portable music player instead of using the car's radios. Be sure to plug directly into the amplifier though, do not leave the MS-8 in the signal path. You mentioned when you tried this the Speaker made almost no noise, which is a big flag suggesting you investigate further since the headphone jack on a phone has plenty of signal to drive an amplifier if you turn the gain knob up high enough.
He effectively did that already (Aside from measuring). Check post #15


Interesting dilemma here......

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #28
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

I don't know if you did this yet.

Try head unit swap.

Last year, I had an alpine 9835 go bad on me . Very low output all of a sudden.

Found another one off ebay and fixed the problem. Full volume came right back.

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #29
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by High Resolution Audio View Post
I don't know if you did this yet.

Try head unit swap.

Last year, I had an alpine 9835 go bad on me . Very low output all of a sudden.

Found another one off ebay and fixed the problem. Full volume came right back.
I'm sure he would love this to be the solution.... but wouldn't changing through three different "head unit/equivalent" resolve this? (post #15)

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Old 2 Weeks Ago   #30
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

hmm... warp core problem lol.... is there a filter (low-pass/high-pass/something) setting on the amp and is this in the correct spot?

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Old 1 Week Ago   #31
 
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

I don't know how to multiquote, so I'll just have to answer.

Good point on the barrel fuse! I have MAXI fuses in my block, but since a barrel fuse was mentioned, I remembered the fuse on the Power Wire off my battery was an AGU.

So I bought a new one and swapped it. It's too late at night, and DAMN cold, to test. But I will tomorrow.

I will say, one of the metal ends of the AAU fuse that was in seems to be a bit loose, and twists, distorting the metal filament inside. So mayeb that was it after all. For now, who knows, but tomorrow we'll know for sure.

I will meter the preout voltage off of the Alpine head unit tomorrow. Easy enough to do, it was suggested, but it slipped my mind.

The sub amp does have a lowpass crossover. It's set to about 60hz.
It does not have a highpass.

Subsonic filter on amp is set at 5hz (it's non defeatable or it would be off)

Bass boost is, naturally, at 0 and not used.

I'm going to test more tomorrow, with the new fuse. See what happens. I'll post whatever numbers I get up here, along with the preout measurement numbers.

It has to be electrical. Unless the Alpine is defective, as has been mentioned, and it might well be. In which case either the preout is super low (but then why would it work fine in her car?)
Or, despite it saying the xo is flat, there's a HP engaged. As has also been mentioned. (and without an o-scope I don't know of a way to test this)

Wait a minute - I just thought of something.

The positive terminal on my battery is large. It has multiple wires coming off of it, to different areas of the car. Before most of these, is a 150a fuse built in to the terminal.

Is it possible this fuse is pseudo-bad? Not popped, but not able to pass much? Similar to the barrel fuse issue that was mentioned as a possible issue?
My Power Wire is hooked to the terminal AFTER this fuse.

If so, then that COULD be a possible explanation as to why the amps aren't getting juice. (if that indeed is the problem)

And it would also explain why the alpine would work fine in her car, but not in mine. (again, if indeed the alpine is putting out less)

Just throwing ideas out here.

I have no idea how to change that fuse. Google says it's the alternator fuse, if that helps any.

Edit: Pulled this image from google - see the black nut after the 150a fuse, this is where my 0g is attached via ring terminal.
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Last edited by USS Enterprise; 1 Week Ago at 08:49 PM..
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Old 1 Week Ago   #32
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Got my fingers crossed for ya!

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Old 1 Week Ago   #33
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

I know its a bad connection some where.

It could be in a fuse or anywhere else along the path.

Digital multi-meters are so accurate that they will read voltage even though the connection is so bad that current cannot flow.

I hope you find it.

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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Set your multimeter to volts, other end of probe you stick to battery post - not to the clamp. Other probe you stick to Power Wire connector or push needle through the Wire and probe there. How many volts you see is your voltage loss there between the probes.
Takes out the guesswork, you can do this while system playing.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

I want to know what the voltage is measuring directly at the amp's battery and ground terminals. Is the amp going into Protect mode when it's in your car?
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by syc0path View Post
I want to know what the voltage is measuring directly at the amp's battery and ground terminals. Is the amp going into Protect mode when it's in your car?
No protect mode.

I'll measure the amps ground and Power terminals also.

Seems as if the fuse change did not affect anything. I did not test yet, but took a quck trip to my dr and listened to some music along the way. Subjectively no change.

Will do the tests and post #'s when I get home in a couple hours.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #37
 
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

OK, guys. I have some numbers!
Note that not only did I change the barrel fuse under the hood on my Power wire, I also changed my MAXI fuses in the block. To rule them all out.

First off, the Terminals on the amp read 14.43 volts with the Car running, 12.08 with the Car in accessory.
The other 2 amps in the car read 14.43 and 14.45

So they have the voltage.

I did NOT get to clamp it again. But I DID grab preout numbers for you all!

Head unit clips at 29 of 35, I typically do not pass 25 of 35 unless the song is recorded low.

I measured direct from head unit as asked.
After that was done, I reinstalled the ms-8 and also measured the sub rca's coming off of it.

So, here's what I got.

DIRECT FROM HEAD UNIT:

Volume 25 of 35:
Left 1.14V
Right 1.29V

Surprised at the discrepancy, but not bad numbers.

Volume 35 of 35 (max)
Left 4.13v
Right 4.14v

Nice numbers!

From MS-8 to sub amp:

Volume 25 of 35:
Left .68v
Right.68v

Volume 35 of 35 (max)
Left 1.13v
Right 1.13v

ALL OF THESE NUMBERS WERE ACHIEVED WITH A 40hz 0db TONE generated via audiocheck.net

OK, so there is a drastic difference in the numbers here. Seems as if the outputs on the ms-8 are super weak.

HOWEVER - please note that even when running direct from head unit, with the larger voltage numbers, I am STILL having the same issue. So I am not convinced that the preout voltage is the issue.
Direct from head unit into amp I got the 240 watts number above. I'm sure with the ms-8, it would be even less.

I am, however, concerned about the ms-8's super low preout voltage.

Doesn't really matter though, as that's slated for her car permanently.

So. I seem to be getting decent preout voltages.

So the problem may lie somewhere else. Follow the numbers:

The amp, with a 1.29v input signal (25 of 35) produces 240 watts with gain MAXED OUT. (the .2v, or 200 millivolt, position) Using a 40hz 0db tone.

So if the voltage is fine, at 14.43 as stated above, and preout voltage is fine (without the ms-8 in the chain - whole other ballgame there) and all of the fuses were changed. Ground direct to battery. What else could the issue be?

Tomorrow I will replace my Power cable with the spare run of 0g and see what happens. Maybe my original power Wire is shot. Don't know what else to check.

I have ONE curveball to throw at you guys.
I found this referenced on another site from my car's factory service manual:

"Vehicles have many control units that use more electricity. These units control their own system based on information from diverse sensors. It is important to have a stable power supply as there diverse sensors giving a variety of information. Battery sensor is mounted on battery (-) terminal. It transmits battery voltage, current, temperature information to ECM. ECM controls generating voltage by duty cycle based on these signals.


When battery sensor signal fault occurs, inspect the vehicle parasitic draw in advance after inspecting the sensor because the sensor will behave abnormally when the parasitic draw is more than 100mA. (Refer to vehicle parasitic current inspection)

Perform the following process after replacing the battery sensor.
1.Ignition switch ON/OFF.
2.Park the vehicle about 4 hours.
3.After 4 hours later, check the SOC (State of charge) of battery using GDS.

For the vehicle equipped with a battery sensor, be careful not to damage the battery sensor when the battery is replaced or recharged.
1.When replacing the battery, it should be same one (type, capacity and brand) that is originally installed on your vehicle. If a battery of a different type is replaced, the battery sensor may recognize the battery to be abnormal.
2.When installing the ground cable on the negative post of battery, tighten the clamp with specified torque of 4.0~6.0N.m (0.4~0.6kgf.m, 3.0~4.4lb-ft). An excessive tightening torque can damage the PCB internal circuit and the battery terminal.
3.When recharging the battery, ground the negative terminal of the booster battery to the vehicle body. If the negative cable from a battery charger is connected to the negative terminal of the battery, the battery sensor can make an error. In this case, repeat the above process for battery sensor replacement (1~3) after disconnecting and reconnecting the battery connector."


When my battery died back in April, I bought the best battery I could find locally. (I needed the car immediately, or I would have bought even better)
An Autocraft Silver 700CCA
vs
Factory battery was 600cca

Any chance my buying a larger battery screwed up the sensing system, and the car is limiting my power?
No idea if that's even possible. And from what I can tell others have run even larger with no issues, but hell, I'm grasping at straws here.
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Old 1 Week Ago   #38
 
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

What's the resting voltage of battery if you measure without anything on after driving around and waiting overnight before measuring again?

What's the Ah capacity of the new battery, it might not charge it fully. You might need to get it plugged into a tester to change settings for the battery or some vehicles require reset after battery swap. Hook up a battery charger if you got one and see if it changes anything after it is completely full.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by USS Enterprise View Post
OK, guys. I have some numbers!
First off, the Terminals on the amp read 14.43 volts with the Car running, 12.08 with the Car in accessory.
The other 2 amps in the car read 14.43 and 14.45
Are these voltages measured when you're playing the 40hz tone? The 12.08 also seems low.

Also, if you can, try to connect your main Power Wire to a spot in front of the fuse that is on the positive terminal under the hood. In the one picture you posted of the battery terminal there is a larger nut in front of the fuse. Can you connect to that?
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Old 1 Week Ago   #40
 
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

I would be curious to know if you were able to connect the amplifier in your Car to the trunk battery in your wife's car. This would eliminate all the variables with the Power circuits in your car. Don't forget a fuse though!

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Old 1 Week Ago   #41
 
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by kjp4756 View Post
Are these voltages measured when you're playing the 40hz tone? The 12.08 also seems low.

Also, if you can, try to connect your main Power Wire to a spot in front of the fuse that is on the positive terminal under the hood. In the one picture you posted of the battery terminal there is a larger nut in front of the fuse. Can you connect to that?
The voltages measured at battery and at amp terminals were NOT while playing the tone. I measured both with system on and off at the battery, but volume was at 0.
Obviously the system had to be on to get readings at the amp terminals, but again, volume was at 0.

I will retake these measurements tomorrow with the tone playing with volume at different levels.

Didn't even occur to me that I might have serious voltage drop under load. Oops.

And yes, I can, and will connect to a part of the factory block before the fuse. It was on my list as the first thing to do this morning when I went out to troubleshoot, but I woke up to snow. Great.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Locomotive Tech View Post
I would be curious to know if you were able to connect the amplifier in your Car to the trunk battery in your wife's car. This would eliminate all the variables with the Power circuits in your car. Don't forget a fuse though!
I did run Speaker wires to the sub in my car, but what you are suggesting is one step further - and I will do it tomorrow weather permitting.
This way I have my Alpine as the source, my RCA's, my everything, except the power would be coming from her car.

I even think I have a few spare runs of 4 gauge and an extra inline fuse block I can use to fuse it.

Sorry it's taking me so long to implement some of these suggestions (a day or 2). The weather sucks. Snow and 10-20 degree temps do not make for good testing.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Crap. OK, guys. Still having issues here.

I did what was suggested. Which was run power/ground from wife's trunk, and Power my system with it.

So I did so.


Except the system won't turn on.

I troubleshot it, but could not find a problem.

I am using the alpine in my Car as a source, and the remote line from it turns the amp on/off.

The Power Wire comes off of her batter into the amp.

The ground comes off of her battery into the amp.

The amp will not turn on.
There is 12.75 at the amp terminals.
With her Car started, there is 14.30 at the amp terminals.

It is obviously getting power.

Yes, the alpine is on and playing when this is happening.

I can get the system to turn on doing 2 things:

1. Jumper the remote/power terminal
or
2. Connect the power Wire from MY battery. (leave the ground to her battery)

Makes you think that the remote line might be bad, or the amp isn't sensing the remote line, right? Wrong.

With MY power wire plugged in, the amp turns on and off with the alpine like normal.

But the power line from her car? Nope. Won't turn on.

However - the power line from her car into HER amp, on and off with the radio, no issues. Obviously the line is good, as her amp works fine.

Is there something I'm missing here? Is there some kind of ground loop or shorting situation going on with a power/ground from one vehicle and remote line from another vehicle running into the same amp?

No other ideas. WTF?

I gave up testing and put it all back the way it was. Both cars are turning on/off normally.

I don't get it.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

1...to 2. you'd still need to connect both cars grounds with jump cable for your remote to wrok.

You are measuring it wrong, put it on play and measure for voltage drop across places you suspect there is not good enough connection like over fuses/battery terminals..

You could still have bad battery even if it is new, swap battery to your Car from the other and push play..

Last edited by MikeS; 1 Week Ago at 04:31 PM..
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeS View Post
1...to 2. you'd still need to connect both cars grounds with jump cable for your remote to wrok.

You are measuring it wrong, put it on play and measure for voltage drop across places you suspect there is not good enough connection like over fuses/battery terminals..

You could still have bad battery even if it is new, swap battery to your Car from the other and push play..
Wish I could. Running a power/ground line from her trunk to mine was the closest I can get.

My battery is normal size, hers is like 2 feet long and won't even fit under my hood. (Or hers, which is why the factory install location is the trunk)
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Old 1 Week Ago   #45
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Disconnect the battery terminals from your car. Then run jumper cable from her battery to your Car terminals. Simple way to bypass your battery.

The best way to dummy proof is to get rid of the dummies
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

WTF. I have no way to understand what's going on. I made progres, but not in the way you'd expect.

I did the jumper cable trick, and got it all working, but had the same issue with the subs.
I measured over fuses, at connection areas, etc....found no drop.

Yes, my battery voltage is low - I feel it's dying but I brought it to advanced auto(where I bought it) and even though it's under warranty, their tester said it was good so they won't replace it.

Regardless, even running from my wife's battery the issue persisted.

Then I tried something. Back before this install started, I had a small, but nice setup. AN old sony 6 chan running mids and midbasses (tweeterless) and sub. 30x6. It was decent.

I have that, as well as a similar model 2 channel, an old xm-3520. The 3520 does 35x2 or 80x1.

yeah, 80 watts bridged at 4 ohm. So as a test, I installed it. Wouldn't you know it, the sub SLAMS. Enough to shake my rearview mirror.

So someone explain to me how a large mono sub amp that does over 600 watts rms can barely get them moving but an 80 watt amp shakes the entire car.
I'll tell you what - it's not the amp either. Remember, it works fine in HER car.

So, just for giggles, I put MY subs in temporarily. Old beat up jbl 12's, IB setup. Very leaky because this was what I threw together in half an hour.

I hooked them up to 4 channels of the sony 6 channel. (the last 2 channels I left disconnected)
2 channels bridged to each sub, the amp does 70 when bridged at 4 ohm, so 70 rms per sub.

Again, wouldn't you know it, it hammers.
I will say, it lacks the real OOMPH that more Power would give you, and struggles ont he super low, but it is there, and it exists.

And to make this even better, this is all done with the gains at NOT EVEN HALFWAY! (compared to maxed out on the previous mono sub amp)

So what Is happening here?

For reference, the sub amps tested were: PG Xenon x600, RF Power 250 (500+ @2 ohm, way underrated) and a buddy's Zapco Ref 750 bridged. All 3 have MORE than enough power. All 3 work PERFECT in her car. All 3 fail superbly in mine, can't even move the subs with gain at maximum.

(granted, I did NOT use the xapco in 2 channel mode, I can try that since I have my subs in temporarily)

This makes absolutely no sense whatsoever. None. Nada. Zip. Zilch.

I have only one theory.

Is it possible I am having some type of cancellation electronically, or via the source?

My wife's sub, the GTI12, is wired properly. My old JBL's are wired properly, both at 4 ohm, and they are both wired properly at the amp. One is NOT out of phase with the other.
I am NOT concerned really with acoustical phase with the rest of the setup, for the following reason:
If acoustically out of phase was the issue, this should exist with ANY AND ALL amplifiers used to drive them. It does NOT.
But for the sake of ruling it out, if an amp had a phase switch, I flipped the sub/subs 180 and the bass LESSENED> Back to 0 and whatever bass existed, no matter how mediocre, increased.

So, if I am having cancellation, it's in the equipment. It must be.
And I have a theory.

All of the tested amps (except the sony's) bridge internally the L and R signals.
The PG manual states this for their amp, RF does the same thing, and when bridging the zapco, the same thing happens.
This sums the signal.

To test this, you can sue a track with stereo bass. I have a test track for this. What it does, is it sends a different bass signal out of the left and right speakers. For example, a throbbing bass from the left, and an up and down scale from the right.
(I used track 11 - stereo bass from the bass outlaws Illegal Bass cd - excellent test for independent left/right bass)

If summed, the sub (or subs) will try to play BOTH bass tracks from the same speaker, because the amp is sending a summed l/r signal out.

The sony's are DIFFERENT. When bridging 2 channels of the sony, regardless if it's the 2 channel or the 6 channel, it DISREGARDS the 2nd rca, and mirrors the first to it's input.

For example, If I am bridging the 2 channel xm-3520, I can have both L and R rca's plugged in, but if bridged, it will ignore the R, and mirror the L to both internal input pathways.

Works the same on the 6 channel, and with the 2 channel pairs, even with BOTH L and R plugged into both sets of inputs, the amp mirrors L for one pair, and R for the other pair. Distinclty sending only ONE channels info to each speaker, and successfully passing the "stereo bass" test.

Therefore, if cancellation was happening via an equipment fault or whatever (sending an out of phase signal down one RCA for example ) The sony's would be immune to it, as it will only rely on one signal anyway.

And in testing, that is EXACTLY what I've witnessed.

So, I guess what I have to ask is, is this possible? Can I be having a problem with the alpine, where is is doing exactly that? Sending an out of phase signal out of the rcas?

Also remember, I discovered in all of this that my midbasses also were having issues. Even though they are being fed in excess of 100 TRU watts, and do move (somewhat) they have no oomph, no slap, nothing that you would expect. Audible, but that's it. (really, sounds like my same complaint about the subs)

I did NOT have this same issue when running the 6 channel sony.
The midbasses hit so hard before I could have gone subless. On 30 watts.

So, what do you all think? PLEASE give me some good feedback here.

Am I possible on the right track to solving this? Or am I so out of the realm of possibility that I look like some crazy Car audio wacko?

It's gotta be something. Hell, on 70 watts each, in a leaky, unsealed baffle, good lord these things hit. Hard. 70 freaking watts. Unbelievable.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Some decks have direct sub drive setting, would that be on perhaps and it would send the same signal to rca's.. I used to have a crossover you could bridge any amp at home for sub and it inverted the other channel signal.

Leave the sony in Car
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

Quote:
Originally Posted by MikeS View Post
Some decks have direct sub drive setting, would that be on perhaps and it would send the same signal to rca's.. I used to have a crossover you could bridge any amp at home for sub and it inverted the other channel signal.

Leave the sony in Car
I have no idea. The Alpine is a HD149BT, and I've gone over the manual mutliple times, googled incessantly, and gone over the deck's settings multiple times, and can not find any setting whatsoever that comes close to that.

But that doesn't mean it isn't happening, of course. It really is the only thing that makes sense, to me.

I can't even hypothesize as to what else it could be.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

and you are using the subwoofer outs for sub amp?

Some amplifiers cut the volume in half if other rca is disconnected, all connected and no broken wires? Y cable is easy to put in at the amplifier end.

Last I'd press the reset button on deck and re-set everything.
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Default Re: lack of sub bass

When the subwoofer is on, you can select either System 1 or System 2 for
the desired subwoofer effect.

Setting item:
Subwoofer System
Setting contents:
System 1/ System 2 (Initial setting)
System 1:
Subwoofer level changes according to the main volume setting.
System 2:
Subwoofer level change is different from the main volume setting.
For example, even at low volume settings, the subwoofer is still
audible.

Switch to setting 1 and see if it changes things
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