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Amplifier install Questions

Old 02-11-2002, 09:21 PM
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Post Amplifier install Questions

I'm replacing my clarion 4 channel amp in my boat with 2 rockford fosgate amplifiers (one is 50w x 4, and the other is a 250w mono amp for the sub). I have a dual battery setup with a perko switch. Do I run the hot lead for the amps directly to the battery or should I wire them through the switch? If they are wired directly through the battery I assume that they don't draw any power until the remote turn-on from the head unit activates the amps. I'm just trying to make sure that if I play the stereo for a while I will still have one good battery to start the engine.
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Old 02-11-2002, 09:26 PM
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I would wire them through the switch...I have had a couple friends leave the radio on and kill the batteries. I would wire it where one could die, and the other start you up.
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Old 02-11-2002, 09:58 PM
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I wire directly to the battery. This is the path of leaste resistance if you will. Then when I am listening to the radio both switches get turned off. This way if I kill one battery I have the other to start and get me going. When the radio is off and the amps are not getting power to the trigger they draw no power. Make sure you use the corrct guage wire and a FUSE within 6 inches of the battery.

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Old 02-11-2002, 10:24 PM
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That is correct to run the amp wire directly to the battery. To add my .02, I would power the radio from the cabin power switch labeled stereo and move the main feed to the cabin power to the perko switched side. Now when you forget to shut off the stereo and do turn off the battery switches, the amps will shut off automatically as they loose the turn on lead power.

The main power wire for the cabin power in a Baja is usually directly connected to the battery. You can move this to switched right at the battery easily.
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Old 02-11-2002, 10:25 PM
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Hey Audiofn, My head unit is wired through the stereo toggle switch that is wired through the perko battery switch to get power to my head unit so I can't leave my switch in the off position. Any suggestions?
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Old 02-11-2002, 10:31 PM
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Andy, If I move my amp turn on lead to the perko switch for power, and wire the main battery lead directly to the battery then would the amps be on anytime the switch is on and if so, how much power would they draw even though my head unit isn't on?
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Old 02-11-2002, 10:51 PM
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If you wire your amp(s) directly to the battery, you will have 2 things to contend with:

1. If you are charging the other battery (the switch is only on one), then your stereo will kill that battery rather quickly. We have been stranded at the sandbar on more than one occasion, as my friend's boat came wired that way.

2. If your amps draw a small amount of current (even when off), then you will have to disconnect the battery every time you put the boat away.

I always run mine to the Perko switch, so I have total control of which battery is being charged, and which one is being drawn. Most shops will run it right to the battery because it's usually easier.

In my current setup, I have 2 perko switches (one for the stereo circuit and one for the rest), and an isolator for all three batteries. I've found this is the "fire & forget" amp wiring- just turn off the switches and everything gets shut down, and all batteries are always getting charged.

It cost me some good 2 gauge wire, some connectors, and the isolator- for less than $200, it's some nice peace of mind.

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Old 02-12-2002, 09:45 AM
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Run directly to one of your batteries, and turn on wire to cabin power. That way you always have one good battery. Thats how I rigged mine and it works great except when that one battery gets low the sub amp will start to clip. that usually takes about 1 1/2 hour of loud lounding music.
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Old 02-12-2002, 10:25 AM
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I have a Baja 24 outlaw with a batter switch and two jumper leads inside the rear seat. I connected a distribution block for my three Rockford Amps to the jumper leads with 4 gauge wire. Fed my three amps with 8 gauge wire.(negative and positive) The power lead for the positive jumper which feeds my amps is connected to the hot lead off the starter. The power to this lead is controlled by the battery switch. This works great for me. If I kill one battery, I can switch to the second battery to get home.
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Old 02-12-2002, 07:24 PM
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I'm glad to see there's only one right way to do this???!!!
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