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Car Audio Do you live in your car? Then you need to be able to listen to some high-quality music.
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Old 01-05-2006, 10:45 AM   #1
IcESouL
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Is there any reason to buy a cap?

I was looking up caps on this forum and everytime the conclusion comes out to be upgrade the "big 3", battery, then alternator. So i was just wondering is there any reason to every use a cap?
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Old 01-05-2006, 12:47 PM   #2
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

NO. Kick it and buy a better alternator.
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Old 01-05-2006, 02:46 PM   #3
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

there are good reasons, but none that normal systems would ever encounter. if there were no good reasons at all, they wouldn't exist.
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Old 01-06-2006, 12:59 AM   #4
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

Only reason would be to smooth out ripples in AC voltage really.

Still don't buy one.

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Old 01-06-2006, 12:21 PM   #5
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

When your amp pulls a lot of juice from the cap, what recharges the cap? Your alternator/battery.

Caps exist because people buy them, period. Just like neon lights, neon windshield washer sprayers, and all that shitty stuff. It is sold because people buy it.

Get a better alternator.
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Old 01-06-2006, 06:47 PM   #6
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Re: Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

first off i wasn't planning on buy a cap. I was just asking the question out of curosity. because from other forums that i looked at it seems the anwser is aways kick it and get a better alternator so i was just wondering if there were any reasons for actually ever getting one. Thanks for the info
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Old 01-09-2006, 10:50 AM   #7
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

I didn't say you were buying one.
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Old 01-16-2006, 01:05 AM   #8
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

Having a cap is very benefitial for many reasons
1.) Your alternator is not able to provide voltage spikes unless your alternator is bad

2.) Without one you can harm your Amp


3.) Serves as a source of protection when your alternator DOES throw a voltage spike. your amp isnt bulletproof ya know.


4.) Believe it or not a capacitor is also able to protect other delicate electronics in the vehicle such as you ECM, Stereo, Sensors, etc
because they have a minimum and maximum operating threshold

if you've got a system over 500w i would recommend a cap, TRUST ME it will save you a lot of headaches
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Old 01-16-2006, 02:49 AM   #9
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

^ What are you talking about, pretty much everything there was very very bad and false information. And alternators dont throw voltage spikes nemore, thats what regulators are for.
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Old 01-16-2006, 03:18 AM   #10
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

Quote:
^ What are you talking about, pretty much everything there was very very bad and false information. And alternators dont throw voltage spikes nemore, thats what regulators are for.
let me ask you this, have you ever heard of a bad alternator? you take it out go to an auto shop, have em test it, they tell you its bad. ok now that weve gotten that far. "whats wrong with my alternator mr mechanic?" you say. "well it looks as though your brushes are worn and your regulator is broke"

forgive me i should have said
"Serves as a source of protection when your alternator DOES throw a voltage spike. when your regulator goes out"


let me ask you another thing have you ever had a mediocre system in your car and when you drive at night your headlights dim? thats caused by excess voltage draw, you CAN damage your alternator like this.

i think you just need to read up on capacitors a little. i majored in modern electronics when i went to college trust me i know what im talking about

and that concludes a rant by the ever so sweet, biggbabysweetz1
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Old 01-16-2006, 03:33 AM   #11
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

wow... if ur alt breaks, you buy a new one... not a cap.

EDIT: just cuz u went to school, doesn't mean you're right, moron. i'm not saying i know everything, but many guys here would disagree with you, and i'm wiling to trust them b4 i listen to what u gotta say after that shit.
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Old 01-16-2006, 03:46 AM   #12
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

i dont believe i said if your alternator breaks to buy a cap. i was merely stating that alternator voltage regulators CAN and DO go out. i was also pointing out generals, some cars are different. but think about this for a second, your alternator is going out and throws a voltage spike as your cruising down the road. where does that excess voltage go? it goes all over the place your ECM sensors Stereo Lights Amp Motors Switches i do realize a lot of these are fused but also listen to this. car came into the shop on tuesday for an oil change. guy asks "why are all my gauges except my spedo and tach not working?" we sent him to the ford dealer because we didnt have the right tools. you know what he found out??? his voltage regulator was fried and it fried some other electronics too.


please try to remember i never said that you ARE going to have Alternator problems, Voltage spikes, etc
i was telling him what a capacitor CAN do
If you find the information usefull fine, if not forget it.
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Old 01-16-2006, 03:57 AM   #13
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

are caps supposed to stop the lights from dimming?
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Old 01-16-2006, 04:12 AM   #14
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

ok simply a capacitor is just a form of a battery so to speak
it holds energy and can release it all in one shot

Say your playing a high bass song with a decent alternator
Without a capacitor = Lights inside and outside dim because your amp is taking priority over the juice

With a capacitor = Every time your amp needs more juice the cap sends it some, which relives stress from the battery allowing it to provide a fairly constant supply to other things (lights and such)

Say youre playing a high bass song with a BAD alternator
Without = CAN cause the engine to just shut off (seen it before in my chevy scooter)CAN cause other electronics to shut off

With = same as above depending on how bad the alternator is
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Old 01-16-2006, 10:27 AM   #15
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Re: Is there any reason to buy a cap?

Or..........say you have a 2kw system like me, your amp pulls a shit-ton of juice. My headlights don't dim.

Why Jet-Lee?

I upgraded to a higher output alternator.

Can't that hurt your car by putting out too much voltage?

An alternator doesn't put out more than is asked of it.

Is the BigBaby full of shit?

Yes.

What about voltage spikes from a bad regulator?

That's why you put a fuse inline with your power wire.

Doesn't a cap store power for you amp?

So does your battery, assuming your alternator can't keep up with the load, in which case you should get a better alternator.


I went to electronics class a few times in highschool. I've built and installed stereo systems since I was 15. I've grown up around the guys with the lowriders for everyday drivers with hydraulics all over them who never had electrical issues. Unless your burping your car(in which case get extra CAR BATTERIES), get a better alternator.
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