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Old 05-25-2005, 11:09 PM   #4
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Re: start of newbie info thread

Here's another little write up I did, I'll edit it as needed, but please tell me what to change in a PM. I think we'd like to keep this thread as comment free as possible.

I would highly recommend this order for buying your system in, if you do it a part at a time:
  • Head unit (get the one you want first, so you don't have to upgrade later)
  • Good set of components for up front (CDTs, or Focals or something really nice)
  • A 4 channel amp, something bridgable to around 500 watts RMS at 2 ohms (1 ohm stable is a bonus), with 75 to 100 watts per channel
  • Wiring. You might as well start out with at least 4 gauge or even 1/0 gauge, just so you don't have to worry about replacing it in the future.
  • The sub you really want the first time. You've done all your research, you've asked on 5 different forums what people like, and decided. Now shop around and find a good deal on one, and buy it!
  • The enclosure... build it yourself! Lots of people on these forums will design one for $10 to $15, and all you need is some MDF, a saw, glue and some carpet to save 50 to 100 bucks.
  • Rear fill coaxial speakers (don't have to be the best, just something that sounds decent)
  • Sound deaden your doors and trunk. I'm using truck bedliner; spray in the doors, and roll on in the trunk. Dynamat or peel&seal work as well.
  • At this point you've got a pretty complete system. The rest is upgrades to existing parts.
  • A dedicated D-class amp for your sub. This will power it far more efficiently than the 4 channel, and let you power the rear speakers with the 4 channel. This may require you to upgrade your...
  • Car electrical system: Replace the wires that connect the engine block, alternator and chassis to your battery. This is called the Big Three
  • Next is the battery. Most people get an Optima Yellow top.
  • The alternator is the main source of electricity, and when you start getting up to 1500 watts of power, it starts to strain the stock alternator. Other people know a lot more than I do, so they'll have to contribute.
  • Last is a second battery in the trunk. Notice I did not include a capacitor in this list. Caps are only useful for stabalizing a really strong electrical system (for say strong, short higher freqency things like a snare drum hit).
  • Last thing to do is get more subs, and build bigger enclosures to house them. There's an effect that boosts SPL when you have multiple subs.

I don't claim to have a complete list here, so feel free to send me a PM add to it. This has been mostly my experience thus far in this art.

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