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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Do u guys think it is worth it to throw a RF 200.4 or 300s on my door speakers. I'm runnin of my HU right now and they just sound too flat i want some more mid bass and my highs could be a little brighter. I'm already runnin a 500.2, would i need a cap if i added one of those amps above. I'd like to stick w/ RF amps to keep my trunk lookin clean. Anybody know where i can get one of those at a good price ....austin?
 

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noleaf74:
I honestly think it'd be a waste man. I was asked this before...and I really don't see the use. It's not like the speakers can take too much more power, or they're good at all (paper cone :barf:). So I'd invest in better speakers first powered by the stock system, then go get a new amp.

Austin519
 

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I agree with Austin,
Don't waste your time untill you replace the factory speeks. When and if you replace the speakers then by all means ADD AN AMP!
The factory HU/EQ only puts out about 12watts per channel.

Iggy
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oh man i completely forgot to tell u guys i don't have factory speakers....I have JL Vr series 6" coaxials. My bad gentlemen, so i'll ask the question again, do u guys think i should put a small amp to those and will i need a cap runnin my curent system?
 

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noleaf74:
Oh then definitely yeah...you'll see a big improvement. And no...you won't need a cap with any mid/high amp up to prolly 1000W since you don't have a huge peaking signal like in bass...and if you get to where you're sucking too much power a cap won't help. That's a different story with bass amps...where I'd suggest one for anything over 600W (depending on the amp).

Austin519
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
thanx for the help austin. I don't wanna be redundant here but just to make sure...I'm already runnin a 500.2 if i added say a 200.4 then i wouldn't need a cap? Just want to make sure thats what ur sayin. thanx again for ur help.
 

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noleaf74:
Well...hmmm. I think you'll barely be ok. I want to say they changed to the 120A alternators in 00 or 01...easiest way to find out is to try :D

Austin519
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
alright thanx austin
 

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noleaf74:
Np.

Austin519
 

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Caps are no good from my expereince. If you have an electrical problem, then fix it at the source. Don't add more resistance by adding a cap. It's just another thing you Alternator needs to charge.

Do the Big 3 wire upgrade first, then test for voltage drops

next step if need be would to get a HO Alternator

and finally a new or second deep cycle battery.

Ryan,

personally I don't think you will need to do more then the Big 3, your not even running 1000 watts and I've seen people get by with 1200 watts with minimal dimming and voltage drops.


Jordan
 

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Hey guys...this is a three year old thread...but in the interest of accuracy...

MarvR94:
It's not voltage that kills your battery...in fact saying that doesn't really make much sense. What would "kill" your battery is actually current draw...how much power the amps are pulling out of the battery. And as long as the car is running and the alternator is always putting out more amperage than the car is taking in...the battery won't be affected (for that matter you could remove the battery if you wanted, in fact a lot of rice boy racers do just that after they start their cars). The issue becomes when there is less current being drawn by the amps than the alternator puts out nominally, but spikes where they draw more (such as with big sub amps during sub hits). In that case, you can either upgrade your power system to put out more power than the highest spikes, or do a middle-ground solution of storing power between the spikes to take care of the spikes. Caps do this...but are not an end all solution necessarily. If the spikes are just mildly over the threshold, caps are fine...but quite a bit over the output you should be looking at upgrading the whole power system.

LIGHTBEING:
See above. Caps can be great things depending on the situation. I ran two myself, because I was putting out 150A nominal, but was drawing at times upwards of 180. Since I didn't want my batteries, no matter how good they were, to be getting discharged at every sub beat, then recharged, I added caps to smooth out the power spikes...it just depends on your system.


Austin519
 

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I had a feeling this was an old thread.

IMO caps are always misused. If you have voltage drops and you have a stock electrical system a cap is a big no no. For you it may help slightly because you have upgraded your electrical system i.e. HO Alt/battery. The problem is as soon as a cap releases or sends a burst it's voltage drops and has to be recharged again, this is a continious cycle and will only put more strain on a stock electrical system. And studies have shown that caps are only good for a fraction of a second because of the immediate voltage drops.

This is why I chose to go with a HO Alt, deep cycle battery and Big 3

Here's a write up on the Big 3:

http://forum.sounddomain.com/forum/ultimatebb.cgi?ubb=get_topic;f=5;t=007801
 

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LIGHTBEING:
That's not actually true, because it's a bit of a blanket statement. The issue with caps is not whether your electrical system is stock or not, it's how much current is being drawn, and how the curve of the draw looks. If I have a system putting out 150A nominal and have added a 70A draw amplifier it may not be much different than were I to have a 120A nominal system with a 40A draw amplifier (ignoring for a minute the difference in spikes between the two). Before you decide to do anything you need to figure out what the draw on the system is. Although it's true that after a cap discharges it has to recharge, but just like in an AC/DC converter (which uses caps, that little box you plug into your wall for computer peripherals), a cap isn't meant to be a power source, just a power smoother (and this is only true because currently capacitors cannot hold as much power as chemical batteries, this'll probably change when we start using nanotech in capacitors...). Regarding the strain on the electrical system, that's just not true. The only part of the electrical system that can be "strained" is your battery, since the alternator (with its regulator) could care less whether it's pushing into a completely drained cap or a full battery. That said, even though a cap recharges very fast, your stock battery discharges relatively slow, and assuming your car is running your alternator will charge up that capacitor before it starts draining your battery. This is where the issue of what the system is comes into play. Because if say you have an amplifier that sucks out 80A max and 30A nominal from a system with 40A of headroom, you're going to probably want to upgrade your system. You don't want the capacitor to have to fully discharge just to keep your system alive, because then you're just keeping something working (your amplifiers) that wouldn't otherwise be able to, and shouldn't. What capacitors do is lop off power spikes, again just like in bridge rectifier AC adapters, and they're good for that. Capacitors only need to be good for short periods because, again, their point is to smooth out power spikes. They are not meant to be long term power replacements; for those you need to upgrade your stock system. Just saying they don't work is not true.

Austin519
 

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Well, I didn't say they don't work. They are just misuesed and personally I see no need for them.

It's an added load on the alternator, and even if they do help for a fraction of a second, if your stock electrical system couldn't handle your amps before the cap then there is no technical reason why it could with a cap.

This guy Richard Clark did a test on caps. He said at 1 kilowatt of ouput he couldn't even get a measurable difference until he got up into the 1 farad cap range. Hence the 1 farad per 1000 watts theory. Without the cap he got at least 2db more output, and the signal was far more accurate than with the cap.


We can just agree to disagree on this one. I probably won't ever use a cap. however I would like to test for voltage drops and get metered with and without a cap. It would be a cool experiment.
 

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Lightbeing:
Saying the caps are an added load is like saying a second battery is an added load. That means nothing more than it charges, which is true. But that isn't necessarily bad. If your alternator is putting out excess power, which it should be if using these right, that's exactly what it's supposed to be...a load. Then it turns into a source when your amp draws out too much power.

As for agreeing to disagree we could, but your second comment was wrong, and you mentioned Richard ;). I'll leave it after I say this. There is a very good technical reason your electrical system can handle your amps after adding a cap where it could not before, and this is a misconception many have based on not knowing how this works. Again, to rehash, your sub amp, usually the highest drawing amp and the problem in setups where this stuff is needed, draws current in spurts. At times, these spurts can be more than the alternator puts out. Upgrading the wires in the car (doing the "big 3" as you call it) or adding a battery will only help if the total max power draw is less than what the alternator puts out. If it's more, you may be able to get by with an aftermarket, low ESR (internal resistance) battery, but not if it's a lot more. A capacitor will deliver power during the spikes in the power curve, and draw during the valleys, so it evens out the draw to look like more of a hilly graph than a spiky one, keeping your voltage level.

This is the same concept used in AC/DC adapters. If this didn't work, then none of your electronics would work, or to be more precise your electronics would turn off at twice the frequency of U.S. AC voltage because of how bridge rectifiers work. Same concept here.

Regarding Richard Clark...I know him. In fact, I argued with him, at length, about this a few years ago (two I believe), and it started from this exact same conversation here and on a forum he was on. I told him I could easily prove him wrong, as could any of my other computer engineering professors. He challenged me to do it and said he would come visit me. He never did. My professors did think it was funny though that someone would claim what he did. I included equations to prove him wrong, as well as the fact that I use 2 in my car for this explicit purpose.

The problem with a test like his, checking to see if there was a "measurable difference" is that he didn't have the right conditions needed for a cap, namely that sweet spot where you don't need a higher power electrical system, you just need to spread the power around. I pointed this out to him and others on his board and got no reply from him on it, I also did exactly what you mentioned doing, namely graphed my voltage output in my system where the caps were needed. This was a piece of the proof I refer to above.

The key is the situation. Caps are not helpful in all power situations, and some are better than others. :)

Austin519
 

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You make some good points with the power spikes, but most caps are very low in ESR. So low that it only helps with a fraction of a second. Once the cap is discharge, it's voltage drops immediately. Ofcourse everything you add to your electrical system is an extra load on the Alternator but my point is that adding a caps doesn't seem to justify the extra load. Specially when talking about 1 Farad caps and under. I'm no expert in electrical engineering but from what I have read and my experience, I will most likely never get a cap, I would just get a beafy alternator, upgraded wiring and extra battery if need be.
 

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LIGHTBEING:
I'd say it just depends on your needs ;) No point in doing a $400 alternator rewinding or getting a new HO alternator for $800 if your only problem is spikey power draw that can be solved with an $80 cap. Also...replacing the wiring only helps of course if the stock wiring isn't sufficient...which many times it is (and which is why I consistently berate wire upgrade kits when people are trying to get better ignition etc).

Austin519
 
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