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Old 11-12-2010, 06:12 AM
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Need some amp wiring/setup info

I'm redoing my stereo stuff in my truck. Right now I have a Fosgate P2002 on my Pioneer 12, sounds pretty good but underpowered. I am running my front and rear speakers off of the headunit power (Pioneer Z120BT).

I went ahead and picked up a JL Audio 500/1 for the sub and a JL Audio 300/4 for the front and rears (currently Infinity Kappa Series 5x7/6x8). I will be changing to Higher end components at some point.

So I have several wiring questions, I'll try not to make it too complicated. Might be easiest just to quote my post and put your answers next to the questions.

1) Power wire for the Amps
a) What size power wire from battery back to amps? 1/0 or 2 gauge?
b) Any particular power distribution block to split at the amps?
c) What size wire from block to amps? 4 gauge ok?

2) Amp ground
a) Best place to run ground to?
b) Best wire and size to use for ground?
c) Run a distribution block for ground too?

3) Speaker Wires
a) Best size wire to support a decent set of components
b) X-overs need to be mounted by speakers? can they be by the amps?

If you can think of anything else, let me know. Thanks in advance for any help. I've always done my own stereo stuff, and just want to make sure everything is done right on this.
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Old 11-12-2010, 10:06 AM
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1) Power wire for the Amps
a) What size power wire from battery back to amps? 1/0 or 2 gauge?
That is over kill. 2AWG is fine.
b) Any particular power distribution block to split at the amps?
Preferrably a fuzed power block. You can run a simple 2awg in, with dual 4 awg out, or if you can find one that has dual in, dual out you can add a capacitor to the fuze block point.c)
What size wire from block to amps? 4 gauge ok?
Yes, 4 awg is fine


2) Amp ground
a) Best place to run ground to?
Frame. Try to keep your ground less than 3'
b) Best wire and size to use for ground?
Match the power wire that was used for the amps. 4 awg needs to have 4 awg ground, 2 awg--2awg, etc.

c) Run a distribution block for ground too?
You can but you dont have to. You can ground everything at on epoint on the frame just place them in order of amperage first. In other words your largest amp grounded first, then the second largest amp, then your x-over or whatever. They sell ground blocks that you can tap in to the frame to make this job a lott easier.

3) Speaker Wires
a) Best size wire to support a decent set of components
16AWG is plenty, 14 if you really want to. ANyting more is stupid. On the subs 12 awg is fine.
b) X-overs need to be mounted by speakers? can they be by the amps?

They can be mounted anywhere where they wont get wet or overly dirty. People typically run mount them as close to the speaker as possible to avoid running two long sets of wire to each speaker.


Too many people get hung up on AWG size when they should be worried about quality. 1.0 welding wire wont do any better than 2awg DC power wire. Keep that in mind. Same goes for speaker wire.

PM me if you need help. I used to be an MECP certified installer before I went to college to become an engineer. I can answer any question you have regarding installation. Im happy to help.

Good luck
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Old 11-12-2010, 11:15 AM
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Excellent information!!! Thanks.

Where is everyone buying their cable? Does Home Depot or Lowes carry any that will work? I dont mind ordering from somewhere if I have to. I just want it done right!!!

How is everyone attaching the cable at the battery?
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:12 PM
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Parts-Express.com sells Speakers, Replacement Speakers, Speaker Building Parts plus HDMI Cables, Home Audio and Video, Pro Audio and Commercial Sound. We offer services for Speaker Reconing, Speaker Refoaming, Speaker Repair. Great selection of Elect is a place I like to buy from. Good prices, and fast shipping. Ive been using them for years.

To connect the 2awg cable to your battery you will need a battery terminal crimped to the end. You can use a bench vice if you dont have the large style click-crimping tool. Another option is to buy the screw on type terminals. They are nice and bling you just need to keep an eye on them to make sure the screw doesnt loosen and the power wire falls out. You can wrap heatshrink around both the terminal and wire to prevent this.

Both options are what you need to use. One is a lot cheaper than the other but you par for bling if you want that sort of thing.

If you need help finding the terminals to use let me know and I will post a link.
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Old 11-12-2010, 01:50 PM
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I was looking at prices of things individually and it adds up pretty quick. What about one of the amp installation kits like JL Audio offers:

JL Audio - Amplifier Connection Kits

I was looking at this one in particular:

JL AUDIO XD-PCS2-2B DUAL 2 GAUGE AMPLIFIER INSTALL KIT - eBay (item 300490056690 end time Dec-06-10 07:48:27 PST)

It comes with:

1. 20 ft. of 2 AWG Frosted blue power cable
2. 8 ft. of 4 AWG Frosted blue power cable
3. 8 ft. of 4 AWG Clear ground cable
4. 20 ft. of 18 AWG Blue remote turn-on wire
5. Master fuse block (XB-MFBU)
6. 150 Amp ANL fuse
7. Two-way fused power distribution block (XD-FDBU-2)
8. Master ground lug (XB-MGLU)
9. Four Phillips stainless steel screws
10. Firewall grommet for 2 AWG wire
11. Nylon cable ties
12. 4mm Hex Wrench
13. 6mm Hex Wrench
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Old 11-16-2010, 04:18 AM
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That would be fine.

Yes doing it the right way will cost more. I have seen some really crazy set ups in my time and when the right wire and connections arent utilized it almost always equals a disaster. Im happy you are taking an informative approach.
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Old 11-18-2010, 07:43 PM
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How much power wire is needed to reach from drivers side battery to under the rear seat on a crew cab? Is it better to come through the firewall and run it inside? Or run along the frame and come up through the floor under the rear seat?
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Old 11-18-2010, 07:43 PM
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Please forgive me, I am new but wanted to jump in. I just installed a complete system in my truck, minus the sub enclosure because it is on back order. We are really limited to what we can do because of the space in our trucks. This is what I came up with for my crew cab. I am waiting on the JL Audio stealthbox to come in. I ordered my components from crutchfield. They spec'ed out the amp kit, dash kit, all wire, and harnesses for me. Took the guess work out. I hope I dont sound like I am advertising for them, but it was the best customer service you can get. Here are the pics. The grounding point worked out well, and with a 1800w amp, I needed a capacitor. I used 4awg.
Attached Thumbnails
Need some amp wiring/setup info-stereo-001.jpg   Need some amp wiring/setup info-stereo-005.jpg   Need some amp wiring/setup info-stereo-007.jpg   Need some amp wiring/setup info-stereo-003.jpg  
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Old 11-18-2010, 07:52 PM
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Looks nice, may do some sort of amp board behind the pass rear seat. My SPL2K box takes up all of the space behind the drivers side.

Mines is like this one:

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Old 11-18-2010, 07:54 PM
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That looks nice. My box will fit under the seat. I looked at the type of box you have, but didnt know how it would sound.
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