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Old 05-30-2013, 07:10 AM
bturner2's Avatar
bturner2 bturner2 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Boat: Maristar 200VRS w/ X2 Package, 2007, 310HP
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Clarion CMD6 Issue?

I'd like to get some feedback before I pop for a new head unit.

Last couple times out I started losing channels on my stereo. It seemed I'd lose the right or left channel in the boat which is powered by the stock Alpine amp. Chalked it up to a loose connection or bad cable going to my iPhone. Last night we lost everything in the boat and only the tower speakers were working (the tower speakers are powered by a separate Kenwood amp). As the night went along we then experienced the tower speakers cutting out until they too shut down altogether. During this time if I turned the system off and on everything would come back on for a couple minutes then start cutting out randomly until after about 5 minutes the entire system was not working well enough to even try to listen to. We also noticed that the sound quality over the past couple weeks had grown increasingly poor.

So what I've done so far to trouble shoot.....

Checked all the power going to the amps and head unit. All connections are tight and clean.

Visually checked the head unit and amps while the problem is occurring. Amp lights stay on and head unit seems to be operating properly (power stays on, display stays on without flickering).

Unplugged and reseated speaker connections at the back of the head unit and the amps. Everything was tight and can see no corrosion on any of the connectors.

Tried changing sources. Problem remains the same using the CD, iPhone or radio.

The only thing I can think of that I might be missing is low power to the stereo from the battery but the system cuts completely in and out like a loose wire and will sometimes lose only the right or left channel. This happens on both amps. I'd think that if this were a low power issue that I'd lose the amp entirely, get a low battery alarm and that when I lost the amp it wouldn't come back.

From a battery perspective I'm running a Blue Seas "add a Battery" set up with the isolator. Batteries are Blue Tops. Volt gauge is showing good on the dash and runs at about 13.5 volts when underway. Boat starts and runs fine. No signs at all of low power in any of the other systems. Ballast pumps run fine and the Tsunami pump we us for filling bags seems to work fine as well.

found a CMD8 on line for $229 shipped and can get it delivered for Saturday but need to order by 11. Thought I would see if anyone had any thoughts before I spent the dough.

I was also thinking thermal issues but it's been in the low 70s and this setup has ran flawlessly in over 90 degree heat over the past 4 years.
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:34 AM
ZachDaddy's Avatar
ZachDaddy ZachDaddy is offline
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Join Date: Jan 2012
Boat: MasterCraft X15 2007, MCX, Acme 5 Blade, Pair of WetSounds Rev410's, WetSounds SD6, 2 JL 12w6v2 subs, 2 JL HD750/1, WS402SQ
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What about calling Clarion tech support and asking if the symptoms are being caused by the HU. I would think they would be able to look back at past issues and be able to confirm. I wonder if the RCA output of the radio is what's the cause?
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Old 05-30-2013, 10:50 AM
rgardjr1's Avatar
rgardjr1 rgardjr1 is offline
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Join Date: Oct 2008
Boat: Mastercraft, Maristar 200 SS, 2006, 5.7L Crusader
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There is a reset button for the CMD6 behind the flip down face plate where you insert the cd. Are the batteries four years old? Did you trickle charge them over the winter? Sure seems like a battery issue from your description.
2006 Maristar 200 SS
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Old 05-30-2013, 11:09 AM
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EarmarkMarine EarmarkMarine is offline
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Location: Dallas, TX
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The voltage gauge at the dash isn't telling you anything about the stereo bank if the ACR is 'open'.
If the amplifier is shutting down due to low voltage it can come on again as the voltage rises over a given threshold....however, the amplifier visual status would certainly change. Low voltage can create some very unpredictable behaviors though.
It would appear that the source unit is the only device (except supply) that is common to the behavior of all amplifiers. Water damage can be a culprit also. Try the source unit reset.
You have got to check the voltage specifically on the bank that is supplying the audio equipment.
You can take your iphone/ipod directly into the amplifier that is the most problematic to circumvent the source unit.

Earmark Marine
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Old 05-30-2013, 09:11 PM
bturner2's Avatar
bturner2 bturner2 is offline
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Join Date: Mar 2008
Boat: Maristar 200VRS w/ X2 Package, 2007, 310HP
Location: Brighton, MI
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I like the reset idea, didn't know about that. I'll also take a meter with me to see what the actual voltage is.

the batteries have been charged over the winter and were topped off before the boat was put back in service.

Everything I see keeps pointing back to the head unit. I'll have more time to trouble shoot on Saturday but have a CMD8 on order. If all else fails Ill swap it out and see what happens. Can't afford to waste too much time as our summers are just too short. I'll take one more shot at it on Saturday then it's rip and replace, hope for the best......
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