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This is most likely a pretty noobish question in regards to HU's preout voltages and amp input voltages....but hey it'll be ok.

Basically my question is say you have a HU like the Eclipse 8053 or 8443 that have 8v outs.....but your amp can only take up to a 5v input voltage. If the volume goes up to like 50 then with setting gains and whatnot would one set the volume on the HU up to where the HU outputs 5V and then gain match the amp to that same voltage? And what if the HU volume with the gain matched would be at 25/50 then are you technically waisting that other 3V, or could that be headroom? And what if the amp gets more than that 5V....would the amp be introuble or would it just go into protect, would anything be ruined?

I ask this because i've considered the thought of getting a new HU eventually, you know to make the next step up and all. But my amps only take up to 5V inputs and i like the eclipse decks that have the 8V because thats really basically the strength of your signal...more preout voltage the less noise you'll have and the lower your gains will need to be.

So whats the deal with matching HU preout voltage and amp input voltage.......sorry if it is very elemental and noobish....thanks for the replies in advance.

Thomas
 

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Your headunit may be capable of 8vrms output, but unless you're playing 0db sine wave you're never going to see anywhere near that kind of output with regular music. Look up the term "crest factor" with google and you will see what I mean. Also, keep in mind that your hu has level controls for all the outputs, as well as an equalizer so your results are really going to vary. If you set the levels to minus -15 or whatever it is, or cut too much on the eq you will never hit 8vrms.

I usually like to set my gains by ear. Put it wherever it gets loudest for me, and with the least amount of noise. Clipping isn't an issue unless you can hear it.

Nothing wrong with setting the gains too high... you just won't be able to use the entire range on your volume knob before it distorts.
 
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