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Fast50dad
04-25-2012, 06:02 PM
We had the JL tower speakers mounted (with their own volume control), added a second amp, upped the 10" sub to a 12", an extra battery, an isolater, and some LEDs. Tried it in the garage, the drivers remote doesn't work (taking it in on Saturday to have it fixed). We have the Clarion system.

When I plugged the auxillary cord into my iPad, the volume was very low and bass was non-existent. The iPad's volume was all the way up. Is this something that I just need to deal with? Is it better to use my cigarette lighter option to run it, or an iPod? Both are in my wife's Suburban and don't have them to test. But when we played a Kid Rock cd, it sounded great.

Any tips or past experiences would be appreciated.

2003 ProStar 209

93ProStar205
04-25-2012, 09:49 PM
Clarion decks have an input sensitivity selection on the aux rca's. Make sure it's set to "high" in the options menu on the deck. Process varies a bit from unit to unit, but it's in the manual.

ricford
04-25-2012, 11:29 PM
Just my opinion, but I've never heard a Kid Rock CD that sounded good.

Tomi
04-26-2012, 02:05 AM
I've been wondering why do you guys install head units at all? I use Spotify on my mobile and all my music is in mp3's. So easy to just plug the mobile or tablet directly to the amp and play.

Brian B
04-26-2012, 03:27 AM
Just my opinion, but I've never heard a Kid Rock CD that sounded good.


:toast:

Fast50dad
04-26-2012, 08:08 PM
Clarion decks have an input sensitivity selection on the aux rca's. Make sure it's set to "high" in the options menu on the deck. Process varies a bit from unit to unit, but it's in the manual.

Thanks for the reply, I'll give it a shot!

JimN
04-26-2012, 08:48 PM
We had the JL tower speakers mounted (with their own volume control), added a second amp, upped the 10" sub to a 12", an extra battery, an isolater, and some LEDs. Tried it in the garage, the drivers remote doesn't work (taking it in on Saturday to have it fixed). We have the Clarion system.

When I plugged the auxillary cord into my iPad, the volume was very low and bass was non-existent. The iPad's volume was all the way up. Is this something that I just need to deal with? Is it better to use my cigarette lighter option to run it, or an iPod? Both are in my wife's Suburban and don't have them to test. But when we played a Kid Rock cd, it sounded great.

Any tips or past experiences would be appreciated.

2003 ProStar 209

Also, if you go into the iPad settings for Music, you can set/change the max output level, they have EQ settings, etc. If you are using low bit-rate MP3 files, that's a major problem because they're lacking a lot of data. If you're using the headphone jack, that's one reason the level is low- the output from i-devices is better from the connector on the bottom and if the head unit takes this signal, the head unit will be what controls the i-device, show the meta-data, cover art, etc. The sound is better, too.

Jeff d
04-26-2012, 08:49 PM
I've been wondering why do you guys install head units at all? I use Spotify on my mobile and all my music is in mp3's. So easy to just plug the mobile or tablet directly to the amp and play.

One to have a radio tuner to use when I want it or would rather not fool with my phone. Also, the output voltage on a phone or mp3 player when applied to the extremely high impedence RCA inputs of an automotive amp is really suboptimal compared to an EQ or head unit. At a minimum you should have a suitable preamp between your mp3 player and amp.

Also, my head unit has a better digital to audio converter than the built in iPhone one. When you connect to it via USB it offloads the mp3 decoding to the HU. It sounds noticeably better than through the headphone jack.

Fast50dad
04-27-2012, 07:10 PM
Appreciate the responses gang. I know the headphone jack comes off the back of the head unit. Is it worth it to spend the $ on a preamp and headphone to "bottom of iPad" converter jack (if they make them)?

JimN
04-27-2012, 08:01 PM
Appreciate the responses gang. I know the headphone jack comes off the back of the head unit. Is it worth it to spend the $ on a preamp and headphone to "bottom of iPad" converter jack (if they make them)?

Where are you located?

If you want to use iPod/iPhone as your main source and radio as a secondary with the possibility of a wired remote, look at the Fusion Electronics MS-IP600. It was designed specifically for marine, not like a car stereo with epoxy on the circuit boards and a couple of rubber seals. It has a door that opens for inserting the iPhone/iPod and that has a rubber O-ring to seal water out.

I just installed an MS-IP700 yesterday and, while it's really made for luxury cruisers/yachts, it sounded really good, as the internal slot for iPod/iPhone, can use a wired remote, has 4 zones of outputs and control for each, stereo out + subwoofer out for each zone and if you really want control, it can connect to a router and that allows control with an iPhone/iPad.

The IP700 also has a slot next to the iPod/iPhone slot so a thumb drive can be plugged it.

Fast50dad
04-27-2012, 08:46 PM
JimN, thanks for the reply. We are in ND, boat in MN. I am overbudget already, just trying to lick my wounds and make the family happy with the money we have already spent. Again, I appreciate your reply. Thanks!

Jeff d
04-27-2012, 08:55 PM
Probably the best budget, "headless" solution for an iPod/iPhone/iPad would be something like the iSimple is75 cable (charges and pulls a "line out" signal through the dock port) and an inexpensive EQ like the Clarion EQS746.

The equalizer will act like a preamp but also give you An easy to use volume, fade and equalizer control. You should be able to get both for less than $90.

Fast50dad
04-27-2012, 09:16 PM
Jeff_d, thanks for the reply. I'll take a look at the back of the 03 Clarion head unit tomorrow when I get it to the audio shop. We're in for the night doing family time soon. I'll take a look tomorrow. Thanks again!

Fast50dad
04-29-2012, 08:57 PM
Here are some pics for the new (used tower speakers purchased from a fellow TT member) tower speakers. My audio guys asked to mount them like this and I said I'd be there in 15 minutes to look at their goofy idea. I loved it. Looking at the Polk DBs, they have a quick release pin that someone could just pull out from the dock, yank, and take the speakers. Besides putting on a small bolt with a nylon-necked nut to keep the honest person away. Any tips to give me for a boat on a lift with no canopy (for all the lake to see and steal)? Downsides for mounting them this way?

swatguy
05-02-2012, 08:54 PM
I think mounting them as far to the side like that gives the best sound to the rider as you spend most if your time outside the wake. I have mine angled out just a bit.

As far as the answers to your other questions I think they have been answered. The iPad and ipod really have a low voltage thru their headphone jack. No matter what a cd in you head unit will always give you a bit more volume when compared to your ipod thru an aux cable. Tune your gains on your amp and system with the iPad and the boat running and it will help. Also I would highly recommend not setting that aux input sensitivity to loud or hi. It really distorts the signal much quicker when set there. Make sure it in the middle at medium. Also as mentioned check the internal ipad volume max settings.

Fast50dad
05-07-2012, 06:50 PM
Swatguy, thanks for the reply. Here's where I am at, I messed with the ipad settings with no luck. At times, I could barely hear the vocal. I will check the amp settings, but don't want to hose how the radio sounds. Is there a particular amp setting that I should try first? Thanks guys!

swatguy
05-09-2012, 01:57 AM
What you will want to do is hook up your source IE iPod/ipad. Make sure you turn your gain down a bit on you amp to the low side to prevent your speaker from blowing as you turn your volume up to 3/4 max volume on the dial. Now turn the gain slowly up on you amp til the sound starts to distort/crackle and then back off just a bit.

Without knowing the amp and the rest of your system I can't really tell you where to set the rest of the switches or give you info on setting crossovers and get into tuning it. The above way is the generic way to make sure your gains are set properly. You can fine tune the crossovers to your liking. If you have a high pass filter on the amp a lot of people prefer to run the high pass setting on the tower speakers to give you a bit more sound travel down the line as it allows you to have a bit more volume with a little less distortion due to eliminating some of the low frequencies that are pushed to the speaker

Fast50dad
05-11-2012, 07:41 PM
Swatguy, thanks again. We were going to put it in tomorrow, but it's fishing opener. I only use the access twice a year and it's never on that weekend.

Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 02:49 PM
What's this now? When I plug the iPad in, flip the aux switch it plays (still sounds horrible), for about 30. Then "click" shuts off radio and all my gauges spin. I have the key turned to the left and plenty of battery power. Thoughts? So much for troubleshooting the Aux and iPad. Radio and cds work fine.

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Jeff d
05-14-2012, 03:17 PM
Have you tried another 1/8" stereo device on the input? I'd find an MP3 player, phone or laptop (Anything with a headphone jack) and hook it up and see what happens.

JimN
05-14-2012, 03:26 PM
What's this now? When I plug the iPad in, flip the aux switch it plays (still sounds horrible), for about 30. Then "click" shuts off radio and all my gauges spin. I have the key turned to the left and plenty of battery power. Thoughts? So much for troubleshooting the Aux and iPad. Radio and cds work fine.

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Where did you take power for the power amp? You ONLY want to go directly to the battery. No other place will work.

Go into Settings, Music and look for the EQ and level settings. It's best to set the limit ON because music with extreme dynamics (yeah, I know) can cause the output of the iPad to clip. Also, if the Loudness or other bass enhancing EQ is used while the head unit's set for the same kind of equalization, the head unit may see it as a problem and protect itself.

If you want, verify that the iPad works when connected to another device, other than ear buds. WalMart has a stupid little ball speaker with a monster face on it and it's amplified. I think it's about $7 and can be used to trace audio signals.

Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 03:40 PM
Have you tried another 1/8" stereo device on the input? I'd find an MP3 player, phone or laptop (Anything with a headphone jack) and hook it up and see what happens.


Thanks for the reply Jeff, I'll plug the phone in and try it when I get back home.

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 03:43 PM
Where did you take power for the power amp? You ONLY want to go directly to the battery. No other place will work.



Go into Settings, Music and look for the EQ and level settings. It's best to set the limit ON because music with extreme dynamics (yeah, I know) can cause the output of the iPad to clip. Also, if the Loudness or other bass enhancing EQ is used while the head unit's set for the same kind of equalization, the head unit may see it as a problem and protect itself.



If you want, verify that the iPad works when connected to another device, other than ear buds. WalMart has a stupid little ball speaker with a monster face on it and it's amplified. I think it's about $7 and can be used to trace audio signals.


JimN, thanks for the reply. I have both battery covers off and will chase power cables. The iPad works fine when I plug it into my Jambox (totally recommend it!). I'll try my phone as well. Thanks!

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 05:42 PM
So I dropped $20 for a Monster Cable connector, did the same thing and went "click". Sound still was muffled. Picked up my cover (which was covering my panel) and found I bumped ACC2 on. Turned it off and no issues with it turning off, just don't have the sound. I guess I'll use the cig adapter to run iPad-iPod tunes through the radio. Thanks gang!

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 06:03 PM
Spoke with my installers, they said a standard battery charger will show fully charged on gel batteries (and could ruin them,thoughts?). I will pick up a newer charger and see if my problem is low battery related.

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Fast50dad
05-14-2012, 06:15 PM
Spoke with Interstate Battery, they told me the Optima is a dry cell battery, not a gel. So, I'm going to charge it with my charger (how they charged it initially and go from there.

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swatguy
05-14-2012, 11:54 PM
Good luck with the troubleshoot. Sorry can't help ya there. Keep us posted

Fast50dad
05-15-2012, 11:24 PM
Went to Fleet Farm and bought a $40 voltage/battery tester. Hooked it up, pressed the test button for about 5 seconds (instructions say don't test longer than 10 seconds). At 5 seconds, my tester started smoking. Read 12.1 volts, Interstate said min should be 13.1. It may not be able to fully charge if dropped that low. While under there I found the negative was just loosely tighted to the post. Hopeful this was the problem, I tightened it and tried it again. Still 30 seconds in with the radio playing, radio dies and engine horn goes off. Gonna pull the battery and take to Interstate tomorrow. Hopefully this is the fix.

Like above posts read, both the installer said the head unit may be trying to protect itself from the iPad and a low charge on the batterydefective battery would cause the radio to shut itself off protecting the system. I'll take the yellow top Optima in to get tested, more to follow.

Fast50dad
05-16-2012, 08:56 PM
Back from Interstate, battery checked out ok. Installers are getting the boat back tomorrow. I'm thinking the 03 Clarion head unit is done.

Anyone know of a newer head unit with remote on the drivers side the won't cost me an arm and a leg?

JimN
05-17-2012, 12:48 AM
Back from Interstate, battery checked out ok. Installers are getting the boat back tomorrow. I'm thinking the 03 Clarion head unit is done.

Anyone know of a newer head unit with remote on the drivers side the won't cost me an arm and a leg?

The first thing I would do, if I was looking for this problem, is measure the resistance from the head unit's power wires to the battery terminals- (red yellow and black). This is the only valid test, not measuring the voltage using the red and black wires. Also, the red is basically there as a "power enable" function, not for the head unit's main power supply. That would be the yellow wire. If I saw more than about .1 Ohms, I would find out why. Any resistance on these wires will cause problems.

Fast50dad
05-17-2012, 05:20 PM
JimN, thanks again for your response. I shouldn't post this, but will so someone else may learn from this. I am a dumb@ss that can't plug the headphone jack all the way in. So it's muffled and shorts the head unit. Thanks for the responses everyone!

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Fast50dad
07-10-2012, 08:55 PM
So over the weekend, my rear Clarion speakers were skipping and bonking during the songs. The next day, no audio in the right speakers, next day, sub and all speakers were dead. I have a second amp powering 4 tower speakers and they work fine. Did I fry my stock amp? Checked the 25 amp fuse On the amp and it looks fine. Thanks gang!

JimN
07-10-2012, 09:08 PM
JimN, thanks again for your response. I shouldn't post this, but will so someone else may learn from this. I am a dumb@ss that can't plug the headphone jack all the way in. So it's muffled and shorts the head unit. Thanks for the responses everyone!

Sent from my BlackBerry 9630 using Tapatalk

Some plugs don't go all the way in- don't sweat it.

JimN
07-10-2012, 09:09 PM
So over the weekend, my rear Clarion speakers were skipping and bonking during the songs. The next day, no audio in the right speakers, next day, sub and all speakers were dead. I have a second amp powering 4 tower speakers and they work fine. Did I fry my stock amp? Checked the 25 amp fuse On the amp and it looks fine. Thanks gang!

Did you check for voltage at the amps?

Fast50dad
07-10-2012, 09:22 PM
No idea on how to do that. Spoke with my audio shop and they asked me to pull the amp and bring it to town after the weekend so they can test it. I will try to replace the fuse prior to doing so. The amp was warm (but I think unpowered) not blazing hot like the kicker amp. Thanks Jim.

JimN
07-10-2012, 09:24 PM
No idea on how to do that. Spoke with my audio shop and they asked me to pull the amp and bring it to town after the weekend so they can test it. I will try to replace the fuse prior to doing so. The amp was warm (but I think unpowered) not blazing hot like the kicker amp. Thanks Jim.

Do you have a multi-meter or test light? Connect either at the power amp power terminals and if you see voltage, check the fuses on the amps. If the amps were mounted directly on an amplifier board, have the shop use spacers (if someone else installed them) or do that yourself. Amps that breathe well stay cool and live longer.

Fast50dad
07-10-2012, 09:31 PM
This is the 03 stock amp. I only found one fuse on the amp, checked the fuse panel "push buttons" underneath the console and nothing popped. I'll grab a multi-meter and try it as well prior to taking The amp out. Thanks again man.

Thrall
07-11-2012, 12:23 PM
So over the weekend, my rear Clarion speakers were skipping and bonking during the songs. The next day, no audio in the right speakers, next day, sub and all speakers were dead. I have a second amp powering 4 tower speakers and they work fine. Did I fry my stock amp? Checked the 25 amp fuse On the amp and it looks fine. Thanks gang!

Did you eliminate a bad cord from the Ipad to the head unit inputs? Or was this radio,CD and everything? My Ipod cable gave up the ghost a couple weeks ago with similar symptoms. No sound or cutting out on various speakers.
New cable from the head unit cured it. This time I got the one that charges your Ipod and hooks to the bottom connector on the ipod for line level input vs spkr level from the headphone jack. Much better sound quality from the Ipod as well this way, almost as good as a CD.

Thrall
07-11-2012, 12:36 PM
This is the 03 stock amp. I only found one fuse on the amp, checked the fuse panel "push buttons" underneath the console and nothing popped. I'll grab a multi-meter and try it as well prior to taking The amp out. Thanks again man.

Shouldn't be fused to any of the push button circuit breakers under the helm.
You should however have a fuse on the + lead right off the battery and then the fuse on the amp itself. If not, install an inline fuse just off the battery to protect your amps.
(This may not help your problem, if the amp is actually firing up).

Use what you have to help diagnose the problem.
Use your good amp (tower) and hook it up to the cockpit speakers and same outputs on thehead unit that the prolem is coming from and see if that works. Then you know you have a problem with the cockpit amp or fuse/power to it.
Same with RCA cables swap known good ones for the ones in question (or buy a couple cheap RCA patch cords to test with.

This is all pretty vague, tough to diagnose without seeing it, but in general, MC does/did a shoddy job of amplifier wiring. My 06 looked like a rats nest of wires coming off the single battery, like some ole farmer rigged it together. With less than 50hrs on the boat when I bought it used, the stereo was all effed up.
I ripped out all the wiring and cleaned it up (and added a house battery since I upped the # of speakers and amps at the same time). Once done, all the components that were originally installed at teh factory worked flawlessly as well as the new components.
Pictures are "after" and as JimN mentioned, having the amps stand off the rack/mount helps immensly with cooling. I just used some aluminum tubing from the hardware store.
Good luck with your fix.

JimN
07-11-2012, 03:23 PM
This is the 03 stock amp. I only found one fuse on the amp, checked the fuse panel "push buttons" underneath the console and nothing popped. I'll grab a multi-meter and try it as well prior to taking The amp out. Thanks again man.

Did you try it with the radio?

Fast50dad
07-11-2012, 08:20 PM
Thrall and Jim, thanks. My new amp has RCA jacks, my 03 amp connections look like push ends around a small metal Popsicle stick if that makes sense. I will hopefully find a fuse coming off the battery to the amp. I really don't want to pull the amp out. It will take about 30 pictures of before, 45 minutes labeling every wire, and some patience yet to be found. I did grab my spare fuse assortment from my truck and put it in my wife's Suburban for when we get to the lake. Thanks guys!

Radio, iPod, and CD all have the same sound, or lack there of...tower speakers only. The iPad switch is off allowing radio and CD play so this is not an issue, but good call.

JimN
07-11-2012, 08:51 PM
Thrall and Jim, thanks. My new amp has RCA jacks, my 03 amp connections look like push ends around a small metal Popsicle stick if that makes sense. I will hopefully find a fuse coming off the battery to the amp. I really don't want to pull the amp out. It will take about 30 pictures of before, 45 minutes labeling every wire, and some patience yet to be found. I did grab my spare fuse assortment from my truck and put it in my wife's Suburban for when we get to the lake. Thanks guys!

Radio, iPod, and CD all have the same sound, or lack there of...tower speakers only. The iPad switch is off allowing radio and CD play so this is not an issue, but good call.

What make and models are the amps in the system, now? For the amp(s) with RCA jacks, use a 1/8" stereo to RCA Y cord and go direct with your iPod, iPad, Android, iPhone or whatever you have. If that works, check for signal from the head unit side of things. Is there a piece of equipment between the head unit and the amps?

If you're pulling the amps out, make sure to open the breaker or pull the fuse at the battery first. That way, you won't have wires that are exposed and hot.

JimN
07-11-2012, 08:55 PM
It shows "Midwest" for your location- where? Sorry if I already asked this.

Fast50dad
07-11-2012, 08:59 PM
03 JL amp, new Kicker amp for the tower with RCA wire. Head unit goes straight to the amps as far as I know. Thanks for the tip on disconnecting the battery (powers boat, boat speakers, and sub) prior to removal of 03 amp. I don't plan on touching the second battery and Kicker amp (tower speakers).

Thrall
07-13-2012, 12:14 PM
Sounds like you have 1 amp to 1 batt and amp #2 to batt #2. This is not ideal. All audio equipment should be powered and grounded to/from the same source.
Check this website www.bcae1.com. Lots of good audio info.
Another thing that will help is to draw up the configuration you have/want before starting into it. Makes it much easier to follow your progress. Also easier to erease a pencil line that make wrong connections and have to re-do them or possibly damage something.

Fast50dad
07-15-2012, 05:14 PM
All leads go to my second battery. After pullin the box out, I removed the battery to find the fuse which was wedged in between the box and battery. A hidden 25 amp fuse got me. Worked great all weekend. Thanks gang!