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cab13367
11-20-2009, 01:54 PM
I am going to be replacing the speaker wires to all the cabin speakers as part of my stereo upgrade project. I was thinking of running the wires from the starboard speakers thru the footbox, around the center ski locker, up the hole in the floor by the batteries and to the amps. Is there anything wrong with routing them this way? The speaker wires will be running alongside the pos & neg battery cables that go around the ski locker to the distribution block under the dash. Is there a potential for the speakers to pick up noise this way?

I noticed the factory routed the speaker wires either around the bow or around the back of the boat which is a longer run than going thru the ski locker. I'm wondering why they did it that way. Maybe because of the noise potential, or maybe because they run the wires before the top and bottom parts of the hull are joined together so it's easier to do it the way they did.

Thanks,

Al

Razzman
11-20-2009, 02:22 PM
They did it that way to keep it away from the power cables i'm sure. I would stick with the factory routing, remember your sub wires are already running through there.

sandm
11-20-2009, 02:38 PM
fwiw,
I'm running all the rca and speaker level cables around the boat. going to cost a tad more, but the chance for noise is decreased, especially from the rca cables, and keeps them out of that environment. the signal loss from a longer run will be non-detectable if you use good quality cable.

interestingly enough, my factory routing has the rca's and speakers ran around the front of the boat, but the rca's for the sub are ran tied to the power/ground for the main fuseblocks thru the ski locker.
wierd...

Razzman
11-20-2009, 02:52 PM
interestingly enough, my factory routing has the rca's and speakers ran around the front of the boat, but the rca's for the sub are ran tied to the power/ground for the main fuseblocks thru the ski locker.
wierd...

I believe all the boats are done like that, mine was.

cab13367
11-20-2009, 03:45 PM
fwiw,
I'm running all the rca and speaker level cables around the boat. going to cost a tad more, but the chance for noise is decreased, especially from the rca cables, and keeps them out of that environment. the signal loss from a longer run will be non-detectable if you use good quality cable.

interestingly enough, my factory routing has the rca's and speakers ran around the front of the boat, but the rca's for the sub are ran tied to the power/ground for the main fuseblocks thru the ski locker.
wierd...


sandm,

Our Moombas have the head unit in the glove box so the RCA cables are a non-issue. I've got about a 4' run from the head unit to the amps and I bought some good quality 6' RCA cables for that. As far as speaker wire, the little bit of added cost is a non-issue. It's just easier to route it thru the ski locker and I also want to minimize the length of the run for the best possible sound.

Razz,

So you think I'd pick up some noise into the speaker wire from the battery cables that run to the distribution block?

Thanks,

Al

Razzman
11-20-2009, 04:01 PM
It is very possible Al. One of the guys had this issue awhile back and it's a pain to diagnose and get rid of, not worth the risk imo.

As far as the run itself Al, you'll never notice the difference running it through the locker versus around the bow. That is of course unless you get noise! I've left mine run around the bow and it's clear as a bell and the speakers get plenty of signal strength.

newty
11-20-2009, 04:18 PM
Someone correct me if I'm wrong but the potential for engine noise in a boat is far less in a boat then in a car. I've see many set-ups with all the wires zip tied tightly together with no engine noise. That said I always follow the rule to reduce the risk. I always run RCA's and speaker wire together away from power/ground.
Two reasons they run the wires around the bow. Its installed before the top half it put on, and since they heve to run wires up to the front speakers anyway they go ahead and go the rest of the way around.

Brianinpdx
11-20-2009, 04:53 PM
My take is - Everyone is right so far on this thread. Where to run and where not to run wires come with a lot of installer experience over the years finding out what works and what doesn't in the real world. From a practical application theory point of view the best advice is (I stress the word advice):

Speaker Cable: keep them as far away as power cables or other electrical devices in the boat. Yet, this is often times not possible.

Low Level Signal Cable (i.e. RCA's): Same information applies as above. Some of the better cables on the market will be shielded or even triple shielded to protect the dielectric against radiated (Radio Freq) noise or pulse width modulated (power supply) noise.

Power Cables: Lets face it, these guys can be a great source of noise generation. Not because they are unshielded or the like but because the power they carry is dirty unto itself. Looking at this on an oscilloscope would make people go wow! Yup! That's noise! Often times these cables get blamed for noise due to the electronic device grounding issues - i.e. amplifiers, signal processing, cd players or even speakers themselves!

With all this in mind, lets talk about ground issues, loops, and problems. Often times this is the very heart of noise issues or performance degradation and with a little planning they can all be avoided. someone mentioned boats seem to have less ground problems that cars. It might seem that way but the reality is they have less active system (read audio landmines) than a vehicle has. They do share the same common issues however. The most common ground problem is actually a physically bad contact between common chassis and the electronic device. In boats often times you can locate the common area where most of the devices run to. My advice is use it!!!! Because what happens in a ground loop (i.e. audible system noise), your actually hearing the +/- differential between the grounding of two devices that are active within the system. Everyone follow that? Best way to avoid all those headaches is use physically central contact/connection point.

Now this isnt to say that even if you do all this that your system wont have noise issues.... other things can happen and they do but you have to address them on a case by case basis. Hope this helps :)

-Brian
Exile Audio

mmandley
11-21-2009, 10:01 AM
fwiw,
I'm running all the rca and speaker level cables around the boat. going to cost a tad more, but the chance for noise is decreased, especially from the rca cables, and keeps them out of that environment. the signal loss from a longer run will be non-detectable if you use good quality cable.

interestingly enough, my factory routing has the rca's and speakers ran around the front of the boat, but the rca's for the sub are ran tied to the power/ground for the main fuseblocks thru the ski locker.
wierd...

Im pretty sure the reason they run the sub threw the Ski Locker is easy at instalation. I know when i had my sub installed thats what they did. It was an outsourced stereo company that AWS used and they are going as fast and cheap as they can since the customer < you is not present in that deal > Luckily i used some very thick wire and very thick insulation to my sub, the wire they used originally is a 4 wire braid in 1 sleeve thats commonly used to run up threw a tower.

sandm
11-21-2009, 10:31 AM
mine was factory installed I believe. mine was the '06 brochure boat that skiers used for 80 hrs, then we bought it as new. rca wiring was through the ski locker, but the actual sub speaker wiring was ran around the bow of the boat with the rest of the rca's and speaker wire..

EarmarkMarine
11-21-2009, 06:31 PM
The original post pertains to speaker wiring so I'll keep it on that topic. Its very difficult to introduce radiated noise into a speaker wire like you would have with live-level RCAs. The exception would be the inductors in passive crossovers so their location in respect to engine management electronics and such would be important. In countless boat installations I can't recall a single instance in which we had to relocate speaker wiring due to noise. There simply isn't enough inherent gain in the noise source for speakers to pick it up. In contrast, you're seriously amplifying whatever minute level a line-level RCA picks up.

David
Earmark Marine

cab13367
11-21-2009, 09:32 PM
Thanks David. Really appreciate you taking the time to share your expertise with us.

tazz3069
11-22-2009, 11:50 PM
Thanx David. I have spoken many great things about you here. Glad to see that you join. Your expertise is much appreciated.
Tazz

jmvotto
11-23-2009, 09:51 AM
Al, My sub wires run through the ski locker no problems . My Rca's are there also for my pac lc1 controller for my towers and they get a light buzzing signal. I will insulate with flex loom, replace the existing to better rca's or rerout them around the bow.

My two cents