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Discussion Starter #1
Hello,
I have been working on a system, and after getting it all wired I was considerably underwelmed with its performance...
Vehicle 2012 Fj Cruiser
Here is What I have selected
Alpine INE-w940 head unit (has 2v preamp outputs, front rear and sub)
Arc Audio XDI 1100.5 (5 channel amplifier rated at 4x150watts and 1x500w into two ohms)
JL 12w3v3-2 (a 2 ohm sub rated to take a max of 500watts)
Infinity Kappa Perfect 6.1 (a 6.5" component set rated at 100w rms 300w peak)
2 farad capacitor

I will do my best to describe my installation, please comment on anything you think is problematic.

The wiring: I installed a ground terminal block with 0 AWG connecting battery to the block, about 3' long, from there a 4 AWG wire goes to the Capacitor (about 6' away). The cap is about 2' from the amp. The positive is 0 AWG from battery to the fuse block and then 6 AWG from the fuse block to the Capacitor ( I know this sounds small, but let me explain). The capacitor is connected to the amp with about 2' of 4 AWG. I used a smaller gauge from the fuse block to the capacitor because the capacitor will be sourcing the large current to the amp when it needs it so the feed to the cap isn't as important.

The components are wired with 14 AWG speaker wire
The sub has 10AWG speaker wire

The sub is in a 1.5 cuft sealed box (built per the specs that came with the sub)

The front preamp out runs to the front input to the amp
the Sub preamp out runs to the sub input

When I turn it on I get sound, and I do not have any alternator noise, but I have to turn up the volume to 26 or 28 (out of 30) on the head unit to get loud music. The sub is on, but just doesn't pound. Maybe I have high expectations for a system that doesn't perform that way.

The gains on the inputs are turned up (about 75%) which seems high to me.
I messed with the crossover points and boost on the bass. Nothing really rattles the car.

I was expecting 100w speakers getting 150watts of power to not need much gain to get strong volume.
I was expecting a sub that they recommend 500W max, that gets 500w to pound.

I even tried hooking up an older clarion head unit to see if there was a problem with the preouts from my new head unit. but it performed about the same.

I do not have any speakers hooked up to the speaker outs on the head unit.

I guess the problem is I don't really have any specific problem... just doesn't seem impressive to me. Did I just pick a poor combination of components? or do I have unrealistic expectations? or do I have something basically wrong with my setup?
Thanks for any insight or help :)
 

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To me the first thing that comes to mind that could be the issue is your wiring or amplifer settings. You may have the crossover filters and LPF/HPF wrong.
I would start at your wiring and check that the sub and speakers are all wired correctly.
Them move onto your amplifer and check that the filters are set correctly, it sounds like the components channel aren't set to getting a full range signal.
What is your settings now on your amp: LPF and HPF etc.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I will go check cross over settings now...but if I recall the settings then the front channel is set to full range (on the amp) so that it isn't crossing over, I am letting the passive crossovers with the infinity's do the crossover and filtering. on the sub I also have it set to allow 'full' sub range (I think it is 200 hz) through.

The amplifier does have a 'bridged 3channel mode' where instead of 4 channels at 140w it can do two at 300 w each. The thing I haven't been able to verify is if the amplifier wattage is in RMS or peak. others have said it is an RMS rating... but I am becomming skeptical of this given the speaker ratings are close to the amplifier ratings...unless I have matched RMS speaker wattages to Peak Amplifier wattage... then I am off by almost a factor of 2.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
as a side note... if I totally unplug (disconnect) the front speakers from the amp, the bass doesn't get louder... which seems to me to indicate there isn't a cancellation issues between the front speakers and the sub... not that I would expect much given their different ranges... but it was something to try.

I will verify polarity of the component speakers to make sure I don't have them out of phase
 

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The first thing you need to do is turn your crossovers on. If something that simple wasn't done it absolutely makes me question the entire install. So does the fact that you didn't read the manual or check Arc's site for the ratings.
 

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The first thing you need to do is turn your crossovers on. If something that simple wasn't done it absolutely makes me question the entire install. So does the fact that you didn't read the manual or check Arc's site for the ratings.
Ah one of those people....lol
I did read the manual (but I am glad you like to jump to conclusions), which is why I questioned the ratings.
And I apologize for not providing you enough information. I will take a step back for you.
Speakers are passive, as are the crossovers they come with. They do not need power to function as a crossover and therefore there is nothing to turn on.
The amplifier is an active device, it accepts power and it has been provided that power (see first post). The crossover settings on the amplifier are used for active filtering within the amplifier itself, the only one of those which could possibly eliminate sound would be the gain control. This adjusts the semiconductor circuit within the amplifier. And yes I verified this was on. There are additional filtering adjustments on the amplifier which adjust boost and filter points, I read the manual to see what these did, and I adjusted them for sound quality. (yes I understand I am using that as a non objective qualifier)
The next component in the system is the head unit. This is also an active component, it was on. The crossover points were verified and perhaps less than optimal but still within reasonable ranges for the components. And you are absolutely correct that this device can have a single setting wrong and no sound would be produced: volume.
So to summarize: two active components that could be turned on: Head unit, and amplifier. Both were on and setpoints have been adjusted.
So you can now breath easier that you don't have to question the entire install.
 
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