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Old 12-15-2005, 11:04 PM   #1
chunkitron3030
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bigger battery, alternator, or cap? help!

hey, just put in my stereo and just have a question about powering it all. i have a pioneer premier deh-p750mp, zapco 350 amp, and a 15in kicker comp vr. i have been told by multiple people that those zapco 350s are capable of pushing about 500 watts, if its true i dont know, but after owning the same one for about 4-5 years now, i believe them.

what my problem is, is when i listen to my music turned up a little bit, i notice my gauge lights seem to flicker. and when i crank it up really loud, they dim a lot more, and i swear i can even see my headlights dimming, ive been thinking of getting a capacitor, but i want to make sure that they actually would work.

i do know about current and all that stuff, so i know what the cap does, but im just hoping im not going to have to get a better battery or alternator. i went to auto zone and they checked my "batt-tree", and said it looked great. someone let me know what i should do.

in my past vehicles, the amp does pull enough juice to make internal lights dim a bit, but in my focus, it seems it sucks all the power to the lights, even the headlights. so someone help me out pleasE!! thanks!!


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Old 12-16-2005, 12:28 AM   #2
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1st, have your alternator checked.

Got to the FAQ for info on the Big 3 Upgrade. Or do a search.

Caps are not necessary, especially for your setup.
For large power systems that require more than the alternator is providing:

1st, Big3 upgrade (if the stock alt is ok, the Big3 upgrade fixes most problems)
Next, Higher output alt
or Xtatic SuperCap
or Both
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Old 12-16-2005, 09:35 AM   #3
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You can get a HO alternator from CFM, a place in Pa remanufactures our stock ones into Higher output ones. 250 was the price, and it retains all stock mounting. I need a new alt, even tho i dont have my system in now as the cars gutted, imma upgrade to that one.
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Old 12-16-2005, 04:24 PM   #4
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would a cap help to prevent dimming with my setup? the sub amp claims 800W rms and the 4-channel claims 240W rms. its all wired up correctly so it should be really close to that. i found a shop here in town that sells audiobahn 1 farad caps for only $60. i currently have the amps run with separate power and grounds, will this affect the way that i wire it all up or should i avoid cap'ing the 4-channel?
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Old 12-16-2005, 06:23 PM   #5
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a. Do the big 3 first. Your not pushing a whole lot.

b. rule of thumb is 1 farrad for 500 watts rms generally. Dunno been awhile since i put a cap in.

c. Also think of it this way, the cap fills up with juice right, then the amp pulls the juice from the cap, and a 1 farad cap will almost instantly lose its juice when the amp turns on. Only thing a cap REALLY does is take the initial hard draw off the alternator. Saves your alt over time it can be a lifesaver for the alternator. However, the only way it will stop your lights from diming (and will prolly only work for a few mins) is to get a crazy big one, IE: 20 or 50 farads.
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Old 01-09-2006, 08:54 PM   #6
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most of what blue focus said isnt true...a 1 farad cap will dramatically reduce headlight dim....but only if the alt and battery are in good shape, and unless yer running a 6000w setup a 50 farad cap is far from necessary. The gauges dim the most cause they draw the least current and are therefore more affected by voltage drop. And fer the most part its 1 farad per 800w rms if its a quality cap, so yes fallacious..you could use one, but cap before a dist block. Good luck
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Old 01-09-2006, 09:06 PM   #7
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Re: bigger battery, alternator, or cap? help!

Quote:
Originally posted by chunkitron3030
hey, just put in my stereo and just have a question about powering it all. i have a pioneer premier deh-p750mp, zapco 350 amp, and a 15in kicker comp vr. i have been told by multiple people that those zapco 350s are capable of pushing about 500 watts, if its true i dont know, but after owning the same one for about 4-5 years now, i believe them.

what my problem is, is when i listen to my music turned up a little bit, i notice my gauge lights seem to flicker. and when i crank it up really loud, they dim a lot more, and i swear i can even see my headlights dimming, ive been thinking of getting a capacitor, but i want to make sure that they actually would work.

i do know about current and all that stuff, so i know what the cap does, but im just hoping im not going to have to get a better battery or alternator. i went to auto zone and they checked my "batt-tree", and said it looked great. someone let me know what i should do.

in my past vehicles, the amp does pull enough juice to make internal lights dim a bit, but in my focus, it seems it sucks all the power to the lights, even the headlights. so someone help me out pleasE!! thanks!!
We run over 1500 watts rms in our 2002 ZX3 show car with factory battery and alternator with out any lights dimming at 140DB.

1) Upgrade ALL factory grounds, they are just not good enough! Every car out there needs to have this done. Go to a 4 gauge ground off the battery to the chassis. We did all grounds with 4 gauge including the engine ground.

2) Add the cap, it'll make it sound better, deeper bass, tighter, better impact.


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Old 01-11-2006, 07:14 PM   #8
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im going to do the big 3, if i still have problems, i going to upgrade the alt. found a place online that has a 200 amp for 140 dollars.
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Old 01-11-2006, 07:18 PM   #9
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to the forum Tom
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Old 01-11-2006, 07:23 PM   #10
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thank you. i was a mustang head for a while, car is fast. im putting it up for sale this week. Can i really make this wagon look good. looking at it in stock form, it is ugly. my wifes 2006 focus looks allot better, but oh well, i have what i have and am looking forward to upgrade it slowley with time.
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