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Discussion Starter #1
I searched. I really did.

Is there a DIY for Zapco Symbilink cables? I have the diagrams with the pins as well as the other older printout floating around from a user manual for an amp. I've looked into mini DIN-6 plugs. What kind of cable can I use? Microphone cable? I saw Belden 1800F cable somewhere I've searched and am about to give up. Has anyone successfully used their own cabling? Could anything go wrong with DIY cables.

I've had my DC Ref amps sitting under my bed for the past 4 months because I want to avoid shelling out $200+ or so at the moment for all the cables I *think* I might need because I am poor. I was just wondering if there was a DIY option or if I should just give in and eat cheese and mac or ramen noodles for the next month.
 

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I searched. I really did.

Is there a DIY for Zapco Symbilink cables? I have the diagrams with the pins as well as the other older printout floating around from a user manual for an amp. I've looked into mini DIN-6 plugs. What kind of cable can I use? Microphone cable? I saw Belden 1800F cable somewhere I've searched and am about to give up. Has anyone successfully used their own cabling? Could anything go wrong with DIY cables.

I've had my DC Ref amps sitting under my bed for the past 4 months because I want to avoid shelling out $200+ or so at the moment for all the cables I *think* I might need because I am poor. I was just wondering if there was a DIY option or if I should just give in and eat cheese and mac or ramen noodles for the next month.


how many dc amps u got? i know their going for about $40 a piece
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
I'm running a factory head, so I'm just going to get some raw RCA connectors and connect them to the front outputs of the deck. I'm going to be using a DC360.4 and 500.1 Just to get it just to work, I think I need: (1)SLRCM.01, (1)SLDIN-Y, (2)SLDIN.12. I want to control the subwoofer level too so I think I'll need another SLDIN.01 and a DBC. I'm in Canada, so I'm expecting to get porked. ($$$) :(
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Ok, so the cheapest way is actually to buy some pairs and cut them up and connect the one set to the front and the other to the rear that feeds the factory sub that has a adjustable bass eq on/off centered @ 60Hz. I don't want to use it as a subcontrol, so I'll still have do buy another cable and the DRC.
 

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Off you HU I recommend 2 Pair RCA outs. Then you can have fader if you wanted.

Option 1-2 Pair RCA-SLDIN.T-F x 2-SLDIN. x 2 (whatever legnth you need)

Option 2-1 Pair RCA-SLDIN.T-F x 1-SLDIN. x 1 (whatever legnth)-SLDIN.Y x 1-SLDIN x 2(whatever legnth)

The SLDIN.T-F are supplied with the amps unless you bought them used and they did not give them to you.

Option 1-If you have the SLDIN.T-F you only need to buy 2 SLDIN cables + VFM-B if want a volume control for the DC500.1. This is the cheaper option. You would only need to buy 2 SLDIN and VFM if you have the SLDIN.T-F.

Option 2-If you have the SLDIN.T-F you need to buy 1 long SLDIN cable, a SLDIN.Y and 2 shorter SLDIN cables + VFM-B if you want volume control.

Hopefully this helps you out.

If you want volume control on the DC500.1 you will need a VFM-B. (whatever legnth)

The DBC does only works on the REF series of amps not the DC.

If you don't have a Zapco dealer near you I would email Robert @ Zapco and see if he can help you out, he can also verify what you need to ensure you have everything you will need the first time around.

OK.
 

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Could anything go wrong with DIY cables.
Yes, actually. The Zapco backfeeds phantom power from the amp PS to any upstream preamp devices. Avoid shorting those pins or you will let the magic smoke out...

With an OE HU, UNLESS it is a common-ground output like an Audi or VW, there is no reason to hang RCAs off of it if you are using DC amps. In fact, if it is a balanced output, you need to make sure your RCA shield cases don't touch (some metal RCA ends have continuity from the (-) to the metal plug housing - if they touch, you are shorting the balanced (-) legs...)

Take the RCA-to-Balanced-Symbilink transmitters which come with the amps but which are useless to you (unless as I sad above, your OE HU is common-ground single-ended output).

Hack the female Symbilink pigtails off at the base of the black box. Strip back carefully. Get rid of the green and blue PS wires.

Attach those pigtails to the car. Now you can plug in an OTS M-t-M Symbilink cable in between and it will work fine.

I am thinking of homebrew Symbilink cables for my BMW as well.
 

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You can substitute PS/2 computer cables for the symbilink cables. I made my own adapter from my HU to my zapco's while just leaving the phantom power (+/-15V if I remember right) disconnected on the HU end. That way there is no way the zapco amp will send anything back to my HU and cause smoke :)
 

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You can substitute PS/2 computer cables for the symbilink cables. I made my own adapter from my HU to my zapco's while just leaving the phantom power (+/-15V if I remember right) disconnected on the HU end. That way there is no way the zapco amp will send anything back to my HU and cause smoke :)
I've said it before and I'll say it again, why would you use an inappropriate cable for an interface on an amplifier you paid an ass-load of money for?

Buy some firewire cables of the right length or more from newegg and lop the ends off.
 

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I've said it before and I'll say it again, why would you use an inappropriate cable for an interface on an amplifier you paid an ass-load of money for?

Buy some firewire cables of the right length or more from newegg and lop the ends off.
When I made my cable, I was in contact with Robert Rugani at Zapco. He confirmed everything I was doing would work fine with my amps. I am running an AG360 and an AG750. I have a G35 that the HU outputs a fully balanced signal that can be fed directly into the zapco amp with a mini-DIN connector. Robert sent me a PDF showing how to make my own SLDIN.BTL-F.

As for being in inappropriate cable, how is it inappropriate? If you get a shielded cable for either a PS/2 or firewire, what does it matter? Maybe I'm totally missing something, and if so, please enlighten me! To me it seems better to have a molded connector that fits directly (PS/2) while having all the necessary pinouts compared to taking a firewire cable, cutting the ends, then splicing on a mini-DIN connector. If internally the cables are the same (read: shielded), why does it matter what end is on it?
 

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the 1394 cable has individual shielded pairs with the power connections outside the shield of the individual pairs. The PS2 cable has a bunch of wires balled up together and shielded as a whole.
 

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the 1394 cable has individual shielded pairs with the power connections outside the shield of the individual pairs. The PS2 cable has a bunch of wires balled up together and shielded as a whole.
That makes sense. I guess my situation may be different than most. The SLDIN.BTL-F does not have the individual L/R shields terminated into anything, so those are terminated at the HU, not the amp in my case.

I think a real symbilink cable or a firewire cable would be the way to go with zapco amp to zapco amp connections though. Are there any prebuilt alternatives to symbilink cables that does not require cutting?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Not sure if it helps... I'll try to help later if I catch the time.
I saw that a while back, but thanks. Please help, stock systems suck.

Hopefully this helps you out.
It does. Thanks, for the info on the sub level control.

I am thinking of homebrew Symbilink cables for my BMW as well.
Thanks for the info. Uh, so have you figured out what are YOU using for cable? :) I wanted to keep an intact run of cables from the dash so incase I ever swap the headunit down the road.

I posted this somewhere a while back, but figure it was time to make my own thread so I can finally get my post count up so I can post in the classifieds:

i'm reading that cat-5 cable has anywhere between 16-20 twists per ft depending on the pair to reduce crosstalk.

i have a 1996 csr article on balanced systems, they're saying balanced cable is spec'ed at 6 twists per ft for noise rejection @60Hz, where ac cycles but it doesn't matter because it's on a car. it continued to say that twisted-pair balanced cable exposes each wire to noise source equally and if you use untwisted wire, you'll get noise on one conductor and not the other defeating the purpose.


The car is an 08 Honda Civic Si Sedan that has a balanced line out going to the factory amp under the seat, which unfortunately in my car is picking up noise (ticks and hisses) when the car is in ignition. The headunit was already changed by Honda and along with a new harness with different ground points under a case file, that helped a little bit but it noticeable, just not as annoying.

I know about IEEE 1394, but given the potential for noise with a balanced out and crap cabling in my particular car, I don't want to be kicking myself for wasting money for the parts and time to put them together.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
When I made my cable, I was in contact with Robert Rugani at Zapco. Robert sent me a PDF showing how to make my own SLDIN.BTL-F.
If you were to do it all over again, would you have just bought the Zapco cables and what did you use? Wanna hook me up with that PDF? :)
 

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The car is an 08 Honda Civic Si Sedan that has a balanced line out going to the factory amp under the seat, which unfortunately in my car is picking up noise (ticks and hisses) when the car is in ignition. The headunit was already changed by Honda and along with a new harness with different ground points under a case file, that helped a little bit but it noticeable, just not as annoying.
Although I have the prev generation of Si, I can attest a TON of noise, much like you are hearing. The problem is not the amp, it's not the headunit, it's everything that's NOT associated with the audio system. I would be very interested to know how far away the audio "harness" is from the main harness going back and if said harnesses are even separated. Complete isolation from the ECU and main harness in my car yielded a noise free system, but I'll be damned if I did not toy with it for a LONG time!
 
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