PDA

View Full Version : Mind= blown


Deltaxstar
06-27-2012, 01:45 PM
So on Saturday I'm driving my boat in the no wake zone stereo about half way up then bam the interior speakers and one set of tower speakers just shut off I'm like ***? So I turn the stereo off turn it back on and still nothing. My amps are installed in such a way that they are kind of impossible to work on without removing the amp rack. So when I get home I move the amp rack to get look at the connections. I tested both amps pos and neg checked all my grounds and tested my remote wire. Checked fuses and even tested both sides of the fuse while powered. Now I'm no dummy with electricity I'm a journey electrician I used a real multimeter. So I called zapco and told them what I just typed and they are completely baffled lol he keeps telling me it's something in the install of the boat but I've tested everything twice. I know they didn't overheat because it wasn't on that long or loud enough and I have 6 fans and a vent cut in. It's not a crossed speaker wire that doesn't explain two for different sets of speakers. So long story short I sent them to zapco but before I did I opened the top plate on both and seen zero signs of burns or arcing no funny smells or anything. Just wanted to see some of your thoughts

02ProstarSammyD
06-27-2012, 01:59 PM
Ok lets think about this reasonably. What are the correlations between the one set of tower speakers and the interior speakers? Are they on the same amp?

Also did you check your rca connections at the head unit?

76S&S
06-27-2012, 03:20 PM
Did the low voltage alarm go off? I would start with charging the battery or batteries fully and then go from there.

Deltaxstar
06-27-2012, 03:51 PM
Two separate amps only thing in common with the two is they power mids n highs

Voltage is on point 12.4v with engine off. Plus my other two amps in the same rack wired to the same distribution block work.

02ProstarSammyD
06-27-2012, 03:58 PM
What about the rca's?

Deltaxstar
06-27-2012, 04:28 PM
What about the rca's?

I don't have RCAs they use some other connection from a audiocontrol unit.

Plus they just aren't powering up no lights whatsoever

02ProstarSammyD
06-28-2012, 04:35 PM
Its pretty much impossible that you burned up 2 amps at the same time on the water. You say you tested the remote wire, grounds, and power at the amps themselves?

I don't doubt you are checking them correctly I would just be baffled if they came back and said the amps fried at the identical same time. And you checked the fuses on the amps themselves? Nothing is daisy chained between the amps?

mzimme
06-28-2012, 05:36 PM
Did you check the fuses in the power wires right off the battery? Ground connection nice and tight? Does the head unit still power up?

Deltaxstar
06-28-2012, 06:27 PM
I know it sounds funny to a lot of people and me too. I was thinking the exact same thing out on the water there's no way both amps fried at the exact same time. Everything in the boat has been checked over three times. I even bench tested them and still nothing. Zapco has had the amps now and I haven't heard anything back yet.

No daisy chain on amps all land on a block. Remote wire is only thing that is daisy chained but like I said I bench tested them and got nothing

Deltaxstar
06-28-2012, 10:47 PM
So zapco is saying one amp works flawlessly lol and the other one doesn't and they don't know why yet. At the suggestion of chucktronics (the installer of the system) he had me test voltage and other things in a different way and the system still checks out fine so I dunno ****s weird

JimN
06-29-2012, 12:06 AM
So on Saturday I'm driving my boat in the no wake zone stereo about half way up then bam the interior speakers and one set of tower speakers just shut off I'm like ***? So I turn the stereo off turn it back on and still nothing. My amps are installed in such a way that they are kind of impossible to work on without removing the amp rack. So when I get home I move the amp rack to get look at the connections. I tested both amps pos and neg checked all my grounds and tested my remote wire. Checked fuses and even tested both sides of the fuse while powered. Now I'm no dummy with electricity I'm a journey electrician I used a real multimeter. So I called zapco and told them what I just typed and they are completely baffled lol he keeps telling me it's something in the install of the boat but I've tested everything twice. I know they didn't overheat because it wasn't on that long or loud enough and I have 6 fans and a vent cut in. It's not a crossed speaker wire that doesn't explain two for different sets of speakers. So long story short I sent them to zapco but before I did I opened the top plate on both and seen zero signs of burns or arcing no funny smells or anything. Just wanted to see some of your thoughts

Are the amps mounted directly on the board, or is there a space behind them? If there's no space and the board is carpeted, the amps can overheat because a good amount of heat should be able to be lost at the bottom/back.

Impossible to work on without removing the rack is great for security but not for servicing them.

You need to verify the signal at the amps and that the problem isn't at the distribution block(s). They used distribution blocks, right? Look at them- does it look like the plastic is melted? Did they install a fuse for the amps close to the battery? Is it still showing the same voltage at the amp side of the fuse as it shows on the battery posts?

Re: the "real meter"- if it's digital, and you know this from being a journeyman electrician, it could be showing voltage but there may be no current available. You have a "Wiggy" Try that, or an analog meter. If your amps check out as good and you see voltage at the fuse, I would bet that you lost the ground, somehow.

What gauge are the power and ground cables?

Deltaxstar
06-29-2012, 01:00 AM
The amps are mounted in a standing rack with stinger fans venting heat I highly doubt they overheated.

There is a 300 amp fuse coming off the pergo switch and it tests out fine. Today I even disconnected all for batteries and tested them separately all good.

Tested the signal wire which was stressed by installer and it's voltage is good.

Only thing I haven't checked is the main ground from the block. There is one main coming in big guage like 0 and five smaller coming off maybe like 2gauge now I only have 4 amps I'm guessing the fifth small one goes to the back of the stereo which is also grounded by the radio harness. So I'm wondering if I lost the main ground and somehow the deck is back feeding a ground even tho it's weak and only supports two amps coming on I don't know it's just a thought

JimN
06-29-2012, 09:11 AM
The amps are mounted in a standing rack with stinger fans venting heat I highly doubt they overheated.

There is a 300 amp fuse coming off the pergo switch and it tests out fine. Today I even disconnected all for batteries and tested them separately all good.

Tested the signal wire which was stressed by installer and it's voltage is good.

Only thing I haven't checked is the main ground from the block. There is one main coming in big guage like 0 and five smaller coming off maybe like 2gauge now I only have 4 amps I'm guessing the fifth small one goes to the back of the stereo which is also grounded by the radio harness. So I'm wondering if I lost the main ground and somehow the deck is back feeding a ground even tho it's weak and only supports two amps coming on I don't know it's just a thought

You could have included the part about having a fan.

You "only" have 5 amps? That's a lot more than most people have and it makes the power supply more of an issue than a smaller system. What's the power output of each amp?

Grounding any of the amps to the radio harness is a bad idea- it increases the chance of having a ground loop and if that ground fails, it would cause several kinds of problems. If the main ground was lost, there would be nothing you could do to save the head unit but it's likely that its fuse would have blown.

Are you using the OEM alternator, or was it up-graded to handle the extra demand from the amps?

Deltaxstar
06-29-2012, 03:47 PM
Lol I did list fans In the first post read it again.

I never said 5 amps I said four amps and five grounds.

One ground does loop to the rear of the stereo to ground it all as a system to prevent interference from motor. If I lost the main ground the loop would cause zero harm to the head unit or mastercrafts wiring harness it is a ground simply a bond it's not a neutral Ina ac circuit. If you lost the main ground equipment would just simply turn off.

I got a call today one amp is perfectly fine the other amp they are saying stays in protect mode cause not known since there is zero speaker load on it while bench testing. Both amps are connected by a "phone cord" . They have a theory that the one amp failed and some how generated some kind of fail signal to the other one and untill they were separated one began to work again. I have no clue about these computerized amps that is over my head.

JimN
06-29-2012, 05:18 PM
Lol I did list fans In the first post read it again.

I never said 5 amps I said four amps and five grounds.

One ground does loop to the rear of the stereo to ground it all as a system to prevent interference from motor. If I lost the main ground the loop would cause zero harm to the head unit or mastercrafts wiring harness it is a ground simply a bond it's not a neutral Ina ac circuit. If you lost the main ground equipment would just simply turn off.

I got a call today one amp is perfectly fine the other amp they are saying stays in protect mode cause not known since there is zero speaker load on it while bench testing. Both amps are connected by a "phone cord" . They have a theory that the one amp failed and some how generated some kind of fail signal to the other one and untill they were separated one began to work again. I have no clue about these computerized amps that is over my head.

This is from your post-"There is one main coming in big guage like 0 and five smaller coming off maybe like 2gauge now I only have 4 amps I'm guessing the fifth small one goes to the back of the stereo which is also grounded by the radio harness.". That reads like you have five amps.

OK, so it sounds like there's a ground wire from the main system ground to the head unit, with the head unit's ground looped to the stud where the system ground is attached. That's excellent installation technique. If the head unit had been grounded to the dash's stereo ground in the event of losing the main ground, all of the current from the amps would have tried to pass through the head unit via the small ground wire and the audio cables, which is why I made that comment. If the dash's radio ground was left unconnected, this wouldn't be a problem (as long as it's not in contact with anything else that's grounded) and, as you posted, the system would shut down without harm.

In light of the fact that they found one amp working and one that failed, this next part is just like an FYI- [The ground to the block has little to do with the stereo's ground, other than being required for the alternator to work properly. Think of the stereo system as not even being in the same place as the boat- it should work flawlessly as long as the wiring is correct and the battery is charged.] When you measured voltage, did you do it right at the amp on the + and connect to the battery -, or did you measure at the amp's Pos and Neg terminals?

In 20+ years doing car audio, I have found that it's often something that seemed inconsequential to the installer or user that makes this kind of thing happen. Any splices on the power/ground/remote leads? Those should be one piece until they reach the distribution block(s) and amps. You posted that remote leads were daisy-chained- did they use spade terminals, or twist the wires together and insert them in the terminals on the amps? If the amps have screw-down terminals, I recommend using spades and combining the wires in the ferrule so you can make sure they're all in contact with the conductor. I also recommend soldering the terminals once they have been crimped, or using Heat N Seal terminals. These have low temperature solder and heat shrink to seal the end of the wire's insulation.

Can you post some photos of the amps and all of the other components, with a list of brands/models? I saw something about Audio Control and Zapco- did the Audio Control stay on when the amps quit working, or weren't you able to see it at the time? If you have a portable radio or boombox with line input, a garage stereo or some other kind of amp (even a small guitar amp will work if you have the RCA-1/4" adapter), you can verify that the signal is still getting through the system and to the amps. If you want a really cheap way, Radio Shack has a little amplified speaker with a mono 1/8" jack, powered by a 9V battery. I have used one for 30 years to find noise and audio problems in all kinds of systems. It might be up to $15 now.

Both of the amps get their audio through phone cord, or does one have a subwoofer level control?

Deltaxstar
06-29-2012, 06:50 PM
The amps are fed from the matrix driver with symbalink connectors. The amps are just connected together with the phone cord for "communication" like I said they are computerized way over my head!

Stock clarion deck
Audiocontrol matrix
4 dc series zapco amps

2 750.2
2 1100.1

All wiring is made by stinger no breaks cuts or splices anywhere in between batt to block
Remote wire is single wire from stereo then one amp to another daisy chained.

JimN
06-29-2012, 08:47 PM
The amps are fed from the matrix driver with symbalink connectors. The amps are just connected together with the phone cord for "communication" like I said they are computerized way over my head!

Stock clarion deck
Audiocontrol matrix
4 dc series zapco amps

2 750.2
2 1100.1

All wiring is made by stinger no breaks cuts or splices anywhere in between batt to block
Remote wire is single wire from stereo then one amp to another daisy chained.

That's some pretty interesting stuff! Zapco has always been considered to be great sounding but they weren't into the high tech processing, like these. This kind of processing is used in a lot of pro audio gear for live venue, theater and fixed installation applications, where fine control of the acoustical environment and speaker response correction are needed. It'll be interesting to fond out what caused the problem- sounds like the installation isn't the cause, though.

Deltaxstar
06-29-2012, 08:56 PM
That's what we're assuming the install can't have too many things go wrong for it not to work. Looks like I'll see Monday what is going on

DJ 50
06-30-2012, 07:58 AM
This thread makes no sense to me. Delta and Jim, you are guys are talking way over my head. However, for some strange reason I'm still reading it and am really curious to see what the heck the problem is. I probably won't understand that either though.

JimN
06-30-2012, 09:59 AM
This thread makes no sense to me. Delta and Jim, you are guys are talking way over my head. However, for some strange reason I'm still reading it and am really curious to see what the heck the problem is. I probably won't understand that either though.

It could just be a simple component failure and some show no outward signs, like smoke or burnt areas nearby. Could be a bad solder joint, etc but the first thing to look at when something shuts off is the wiring and verifying voltage/ground.

Deltaxstar
07-03-2012, 01:56 AM
So they are positive 750.2 was acting up and sending a signal to the 1100.1 making it not power up. I got my original 1100.1 back and my installer loaned me a brand new amp for my trip tomorrow till the end of the week till the other one is fixed. Definently a weird situation.

DJ 50
07-03-2012, 03:39 AM
Hey I actually understood that. I feel much better now.