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Old 04-30-2013, 08:15 PM   #1
CyberPunk223
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Experts, Do I need to Upgrade speaker wire??

Planning this

this is what I bought, it's 240 watts rms, like 720 peak.

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_113KAC8....html?tp=35782

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_2064CS6...654.html?tp=95

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_109GT66...-69.html?tp=91


Do I need to upgrade to a heavier gauge to the speakers? I was assuming I would have too. What Gauge? 10?

not finding much helpful with web searches,

http://www.roger-russell.com/wire/wire.htm#wiretable
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Old 04-30-2013, 08:48 PM   #2
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You can if it makes you feel better about your system but you will unlikely see any noticeable improvement.
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:41 PM   #3
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60w RMS to each channel. You're looking at maybe 12ft to the rears, probably 3-4ft to the fronts worth of stock wiring. Camaro has 18 AWG I believe.

If you utilize the stock wiring and add say .. 8ft to the cable run (from the amp to the headunit) you're looking at a distance of ~12ft to the front, ~20ft to the rear 6x9's.

At that distance, 55 1/2 watts of your 60w make it to the front speakers. You lose 1/3rd of a decibel. 53 watts of your 60w make it to the rear speakers. You lose 1/2 of a decibel.

To most human ears, you need to measure at least 1 dB to notice a difference in volume. So, basically, no. With what you have you don't need to worry about it.
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:49 AM   #4
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Speakers:
16 gauge = Good
14 gauge = Better (Speakers over 125w RMS)

Subs:
12 gauge = Better
10 gauge = >1000 watts

AMP Power Cables:
8 gauge = Good
4 gauge = Better
0 gauge = Best

If you are upgrading to some good speakers/subs/amps spend the extra time to properly wire them. This will save you the headache of troubleshooting pops, hisses, distortion, SQ issues.

Motto to live by in Life and Cars: "Do it right the first time"
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Old 05-01-2013, 12:55 PM   #5
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comming from someone who was a installer for 12+ years..

what you are buying is a "basic" stereo. IMO i would just use the factory wiring for the equipment that you are buying. Keep in mind to do it properly to get wire through the doors you either need to do a new boot or go through the molex plugs (pain in the a$$).

i have ran lots more power than that in my own cars and never re-wired the speakers.
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Old 05-01-2013, 08:34 PM   #6
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alrighty, i'm learning a lot,,, so I'll use the stock wiring in the doors, the back ones are easy to re-wire cause the amp will be right next to them and I will use heavier gauge wire to what is added for the fronts.

here's how the thing will work,

-Amp in trunk & use speaker level inputs on Amp.
- splice into speaker wires behind HU and use to relay speaker level signals into Amp, keep all ground wires spliced together.
- run + & - speaker wire from amp to rear speakers (really short run)
-run & splice heavy gauge wire from amp to front + & - speaker wires behind head unit.

pretty much like this

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Old 05-01-2013, 09:14 PM   #7
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Add an LC7i, LCQ-1, RE-Q5, or JBL MS-8 between your head unit and amp to fix the pre-EQ'd bass attenuation.
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Old 05-01-2013, 10:30 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashprime View Post
Add an LC7i, LCQ-1, RE-Q5, or JBL MS-8 between your head unit and amp to fix the pre-EQ'd bass attenuation.
I would think a quality amp with speaker level inputs would already take care of this.., the amp does already have a bass booster.

I'm going to try without it,, if I'm not happy with it, I may install one, atleast it would be an easy DIY add on,


thanks for the Tip though
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:19 AM   #9
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did some more research, just bought one of these, comes with everything you need for Plug & play install

Pac Aa-Gm44
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Old 05-02-2013, 09:39 AM   #10
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^^ that will do.

There is no need to waste your money on a heavy gauge speaker wire to go from the amp to the factory front wires. Just match the gauge. Your basically creating a "choke" point since you will be stepping down the wire.

When you say splice, make sure to actually cut the wire.
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Old 05-02-2013, 11:15 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberPunk223 View Post
did some more research, just bought one of these, comes with everything you need for Plug & play install

Pac Aa-Gm44
I thought the AA-GM44 was going to be a perfect solution for me too.

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showpo...1&postcount=33

Turns out it's a POS. You're better off using speaker level inputs.

HOWEVER ... you did not waste money on the AA-GM44, because it's an excellent T-Harness, so you can splice into your factory wiring without actually cutting any factory wiring.
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Old 05-02-2013, 02:47 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashprime View Post
I thought the AA-GM44 was going to be a perfect solution for me too.

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showpo...1&postcount=33

Turns out it's a POS. You're better off using speaker level inputs.

HOWEVER ... you did not waste money on the AA-GM44, because it's an excellent T-Harness, so you can splice into your factory wiring without actually cutting any factory wiring.
Really, so the PAC is really worse than running straight from the amp to the speakers?

Can I use the PAC to atleast send RCA cables to the amp?

If SO, then I'll just use the PAC as an amp turn on unit and to send the 4 channel signals to the amp.. I'll modify the PAC harness so the speaker power comes right from the amp..

which side of the HU harness plugs into the HU? white or Black?

Is the small white connector for the speaker signal input into the PAC or the speaker power from the PAC?

Last edited by CyberPunk223; 05-02-2013 at 04:54 PM.
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Old 05-02-2013, 05:18 PM   #13
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I see people doing this, using these kicker ZISL cables to adapter their speaker wires to RCA outputs.

but won't this damage an amp not designed for this? WOuldnt this damage my Kenwood KAC-8405? this would only work with the kicker amp right?




The ZISLs are used from the radio side of the PAC harness, which gives us the RCAs to run to the amp.

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Old 05-02-2013, 05:33 PM   #14
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still reading, starting to understand this better, I dont understand why the rca adapters are needed? I guess so you can attach some longer cables to reach the amp? But again, isn't the amp not designed for this??


I think that these guys are sending too strong signals to their amps and that's why they have to turn their amps gains all the way down,, I dont think this is the correct way to do this..... not sure I want to go this way if it's not right,,,,, thinking of just using the PAC as it was designed to be used.. and turning up the gain dials up higher if needed.

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Old 05-02-2013, 05:48 PM   #15
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okay, so some people are using the ZISL cables to attach to a signal processor like,.....
LC7i, LCQ-1, RE-Q5, or JBL MS-8,,,
jesus I dont want to spend another $150 on one of these things, feels like throwing money away, would be better off putting money towards a new HU.

but I think Jeepguy_1980 & Ecko04 used these to plug right into their amp.... which sounds dangerous to me unless the amp is really designed for that and I dont think many of them are.
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Old 05-02-2013, 07:42 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CyberPunk223 View Post
okay, so some people are using the ZISL cables to attach to a signal processor like,.....
LC7i, LCQ-1, RE-Q5, or JBL MS-8,,,
jesus I dont want to spend another $150 on one of these things, feels like throwing money away, would be better off putting money towards a new HU.

but I think Jeepguy_1980 & Ecko04 used these to plug right into their amp.... which sounds dangerous to me unless the amp is really designed for that and I dont think many of them are.
If you don't treasure the stock look of your head unit, then yes, your money is VERY MUCH SO better invested in a new HU. It's my opinion that the Scosche and Metra kits look TERRIBLE, and clash with the Camaro interior and ruin the overall look of the center console. (In my most humble opinion of course... no offense to those who choose this route.)

The reason to spend the money on one of those LOC's is this:



The image comes from TeamTCA's build. It's the non-BA headunit EQ curve. This means you are feeding a pre-EQ'd signal to your amps, and will have little control in adjusting that curve. One solution might be (I haven't looked into it because I just threw up my arms and said screw it .. go balls to the wall with the JBL MS-8) is to replace the stock non-BA headunit with a stock BA headunit. I don't know if they need to be reset/reflashed or if it will drop right in without modification, but the stock BA headunit spits out a flat EQ'd signal, because all of those EQ settings happen at the amplifier.

Jeepguy used a JL HD900/5. This amp takes speaker level inputs via RCA. It has a switch to allow it.

Ecko04 used a JL XD400/4. This amp also takes speaker level inputs via RCA.

Your amp (the KAC-8405) will take speaker level inputs but it's not via RCA. It's via a little input area in the upper right corner of this picture. The amp should come with a little adapter to connect up speaker wire to that plugin. (See where it says "SP LEVEL INPUT" next to the white colored RCA's.)



The adapter that will come with your amp:



Thus, you won't need to use the ZISL. Instead you will run regular speaker wire (or to make things easy 9 conductor speed wire .. which is basically just a bundle of speaker wires) connected up with butt connectors.

This is what I am doing to input into my MS-8, because it too takes speaker level inputs via a little adapter spot that looks very similar to yours.

Last edited by crashprime; 05-02-2013 at 07:52 PM.
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Old 05-02-2013, 10:02 PM   #17
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wow, great info, thanks,, I agree, I hate the looks of the Metra & Schocse, they look cheap... if they were better looking then I would definitely be into getting a whole new HU.


I figured out what the difference is between a cheap signal converter like the PAC is and am expensive processer like those listed above.. the difference is the PAC simply converts the signal to a lower voltage while the processer actually adjusts the signal for better sound..

I don't know, I think I'll just try the bass booster on the Amp, if I'm not happy the Processer could be a really easy add on since everything will be accessible in the truck.

My last question is where should I connect power from for the PAC?? the Accessory plug by the shifter would be really east but then you would have to turn the ignitron all the time just to play the stereo which would be lame,,,, there has to be a better place.... and I hate the fuse box on this car, I could barely get a tap in for my radar detector and there's no way I'm getting a 2nd in there..

I don't really understand why the PAC needs a separate power line anyway, it's already interfacing with the stupid factory harness so why doesn't it just get it's power from that? could I tap the PAC power wire into it's own harness somehow so it can get it's power from the factory radio circuit?

Last edited by CyberPunk223; 05-02-2013 at 10:32 PM.
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Old 05-02-2013, 10:17 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crashprime View Post
I thought the AA-GM44 was going to be a perfect solution for me too.

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showpo...1&postcount=33

Turns out it's a POS. You're better off using speaker level inputs.

HOWEVER ... you did not waste money on the AA-GM44, because it's an excellent T-Harness, so you can splice into your factory wiring without actually cutting any factory wiring.

thanks for the advice, this is what I'm going to do..... does everyone agree using the speaker level inputs on the Amp is better than using the PAC Converter?
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Old 05-06-2013, 06:58 PM   #19
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well folks, I got my PAC, I thought there was something I wasn't understanding about this & now I know,,

I called PAC tech support and Learned that this kit is only meant to use with a Sub amp, that's why if you use this for a 4 channel amp it will sound bad,, I'm not even sure how you would connect this to a 4 channel amp in the first place because there's no connection point on this thing for wiring up the power to the speakers, you would have to modify the harness to do so.,, that's why I've been so confused.. because I swear I read that this was meant to connect a 4 channel amp to a factory HU but the Tech help guy said no, just a sub amp.

but anyway what I'm going to do is as mentioned before,, modify the "T" harness and just run speaker level inputs into my amp, and not use the PAC unit at all.... I could have just bought the 2 harness halves off amazon and saved $15 or more but then I would have to solder all these wires instead of just the speaker ones.

I could still use the PAC just as a signal converter but there's no need to, it would only complicate the install.

Also the Kenwood amp I bought is suppose to have signal sensing turn-on so I'm going to try and utilize that feature first rather than running a Blue Power line from my cig-lighter.

However

Last edited by CyberPunk223; 05-07-2013 at 07:59 PM.
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