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head unit madness

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Forum Name: Marine Electronics
Forum Discription: Boat Stereos, Security, Navigation, Lights, Switches, Gauges, etc.
Printed Date: July 28, 2021 at 11:00 AM

Topic: head unit madness

Posted By: dreamcrusher
Subject: head unit madness
Date Posted: October 06, 2013 at 2:56 PM

Hello lovely people, I've been installing 12V and home automation for many years although never sought MECP certification. I've done high end homes and vehicles for Phoenix Suns and Arizona Cardinals players. I've used this forum in the past for assistance and now is a good time to get involved!

My issue for today- my boat.

The equipment: I have a 1994 Four Winns Freedom with 100% aftermarket audio which includes (2) Kicker 8" subs, Dual MXCP43 h/u (ugh I know), Sony XM-604M amplifier, (2) MTXTM7702 7.7" speakers and (2) Kenwood 5.25" speaker

The configuration: the entire audio system runs off an isolated, high capacity, deep cycle battery, the Sony amp drives the subwoofers and MTX tower speakers in 3-channel configuration, the subs are 8 ohm, wired in parallel and bridged on the amp's rear output for a 4 ohm load, the MTX speakers are 4 ohm and are wired to the front L and R channels respectively, the h/u only offers a single rear low level output (2 volt) which is split to feed the 2 amplifier inputs, the amp crossovers are set appropriately. the Kenwood speakers run off the h/u's front high-level outputs

The problem: only recently, when the volume is turned up to a certain point the h/u cuts off then back on, then off again if the volume is not lowered, I've traced it down to a competition between the subs and h/u, when I move the h/u's 12V ACC wire to the boat's starting battery, the problem goes away, now the audio battery has a full charge, it almost seems as though when the bass hits I'm not getting a consistent 12V signal to the ACC wire, I'm not sure why that would be, I do not want to add a capacitor to this system, any other ideas?

Phoenix Winch LLC


Posted By: oldspark
Date Posted: October 06, 2013 at 4:40 PM
By isolated you mean when not charging? (ie, it is connected to the main batt when charging)

Either keep it charging, or add another battery.
But without charging, it will occur more often as the battery(s) discharge.

Definitely forget a cap if not charging...

Posted By: dreamcrusher
Date Posted: October 06, 2013 at 10:32 PM
thank you for the response, I do have a battery isolator connected to the alternator, that and the engine ground is the only thing in common they have, that being said we blast the sound in the party cove more than we run the engine to charge the batteries so right when we get home and the night before the next outing we put an A/C charging unit on slow charge until full again, my temporary fix is leaving the 12V acc wire on the starting battery but as you can imagine, I hate running anything off there when the alternator isn't running in fear of getting stranded

the stereo battery had a full charge when I first started noticing this problem, could be a cheap unit, dual=crap but I'm tried of going through nicer pioneer h/u's since they dont stand up to marine conditions but I dont want to buy an expensive marine h/u either

logically it isn't the h/u's fault since giving it an external 12V acc solves it

Phoenix Winch LLC

Posted By: oldspark
Date Posted: October 07, 2013 at 3:22 AM
It's a characteristic of batteries. They effectively have a series (internal) resistance whose voltage drop is proportional to current (V=IR). So under high current, the battery terminal voltage drops and the HU cuts out.
Furthermore, the older the battery and the more it flattens, the higher its internal resistance.
And being deep cycle probably doesn't help - they tend to have higher internal resistances than cranking batteries.

I assume that being marine you are using AGM batteries which typically have half the internal resistance as compared to equivalent flooded/wet batteries.   

IMO the best solution is another battery. That should halve the voltage drop (assuming the same battery) as well as almost treble battery life.

Another method is to limit the HU/amp's peak draw.

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