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I am going to be running a Rockford Fosgate 501bd Mono Sub Amp. I am going to wire my sub for a 4-ohm load and the amp provides 300rms at this 4 ohm load. I also have a brand new 1 farad capacitor. My question is whether or not to install the capacitor. People have told me that it really helps and others have said that it will actually work the alternator even harder because it has to store power in the cap also. Any thoughts?

Thanks,
xr72z
 
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Discussion Starter #2
With adequate wiring there is absolutely no need for the cap. Your not pulling that much power anyway. Ebay it to someone who thinks they need it!
Use 4 or 2 gauge wire, and you'll be grinning.

Peter
 
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Discussion Starter #3
Speaking from experience, run the cap. I was running without one for quite a while, with 4 guage wiring, and went through 4 alternators in about a year and a half. Put the cap on and haven't swapped the alternator since.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
adequate wiring or not. still use it. your hits would be harder then when you wouldnt have had one in your system. and dont run anything less than 4 gauge to it. your wasting your time and money if you do run 8g or less to the cap.
 
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Discussion Starter #5
its a rockford amp, they are supposed to be decent. its going to have lots of internal capactors, i don't think there is a need for it in this case. usually a farad is for 1000 watts isn't it?
 
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Discussion Starter #6
i think i may not need a cap cause its only 300watts rms. but should wire it in? i was also told that by adding a cap u are adding more wiring terminals into the system thus causing electrons to travel through more things. i dunno my friend was giving me all this scientific mubo jumbo on why NOT to get a cap.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
It's your call man, but when I didn't have a cap, and was going through alternators like crazy, I was running all rockford fosgate, and pushing no more than 300 watts out of my ENTIRE system. Just a little food for thought.
 
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Discussion Starter #9
I am running almost 2000 watts, no caps, no problems. My last car was an '01 jetta with about 3k watts, no caps, no extra batteries, no problems. The car before that, a '97 neon with roughly 4500 watts, no cap, no extra batteries, no problems (except for dimming lights). I have only burnt up 1 alternator in the past 6 years, mainly due to crappy design (Chrysler), and I have never used an upgraded alternator. The key is having proper size wiring THROUGHOUT the system. Make sure you are using at least 4 ga. from the alt. to the batt., and I typically don't do anything smaller that 2 ga. from batt. to trunk. Upgrade all your grounds to the largest size you can afford, it is the biggest difference you can make. Last thing is to check for corrosion at all wire termination points. If you see corrosion, the wire should probably be replaced since corrosion will creep into the length of the wire.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
so it seems as though the majority is sayin that with proper guage wiring and proper installation... a cap is not neccessary. all in favor? lol.

hey az... what do you mean by "Make sure you are using at least 4 ga. from the alt. to the batt., "?
 
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Discussion Starter #11
You know the + cable that runs from the altenator to the battery? The factory size is something like 8 ga. The altenator is actually what is supplying the power to your stereo when the car is running, the battery is merely there for back-up if the alt. can't put out enough juice (and for starting, of course). So what happens is, if you are pulling more juice than the altenator can supply, or are using too small a cable, you will over-burden the alt., thus frying it. Think of trying to "drink" a McDonalds milkshake. If you try it with one of their straws, your head would implode. Then try it with a peice of 1" PVC pipe, what do you think the result would be? The same goes for the amp (you) trying to get power (milkshake) out of the container (altenator/battery).
 
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Discussion Starter #12
az that make a lot of sense. thanks for that info. and for anyone who has fried alternators take az's advice it actually makes sense. so az u say to replace that wire with 4 guage?
 
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Discussion Starter #13
4 ga. minimum. I did mine with 2 ga. It may be overkill, but I would rather over-do it than under do it. I've been doing car audio for quite some time (both as a hobby and profesionally) and in my experience it never hurts to over-estimate wire gauge size.
 
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Discussion Starter #14
yep i agree with az. from using a capacitor im looking at the use of the amplifier. if thats all he is going to be adding and not going big like the rest of us then yeah. i just have a 1F cap for reassurance. it would be nice to have. but going the lengths up upgrading all wires and such just for one amplifier is a bit much. if anything, upgrade that 10/12 gauge wire that is comming off your battery to the chassis. thats is the biggest of all weak spots.
 
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Discussion Starter #15
i would like to bring up this post again.

i installed RF 501bd amp today and boy does it thump. well besides all that good stuff, i have a small issue with headlight dimming. only when "punch" is cranked all the way up and the bass is deep, my headlights dim a bit. tomorrow i am going to change the wire from alt to battery as azroadmonster mentioned to do. if this does not solve problem what is my next approach? all power and ground is 4awg, corrosion free and properly connected. thanks.
 
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Discussion Starter #16
try the cap and see if it helps. was your car running when you had the system going? try the cap, write a review then make your decision, if you've got it already and have some free time then give it a shot.
 
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Discussion Starter #17
ahh the topic of a cap.... yes wiring that is too small will eat you up. 4g is pleny nuff (unless you are running 3 MTX RFL's and 3 1000 RMS amp's, then you use 0g! :D ) the cap is the for that extra punch when the sub hits. W/O a cap the amp has to draw all the power from allll the way up front. with the cap all that power is right here right now. if you decide you don't want it I'll buy it from ya...

Matt
 
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Discussion Starter #18
the purpose of the cap is to store power so that when the bass hits hard it sucks the power out of the cap and not your battery, thus dimming your lights. put the cap in, thats definitely your problem. 1 farad means up to 1000 watts. at least 4g wire and you'll be straight.
 
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Discussion Starter #20
I would hook it up without the cap first..It IS only 300w.. BUT if you lights start dimming when the bass is knockin THEN upgrade ,,get the cap..
 
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