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Thread: Tower Issues

  1. #1
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    Default Tower Issues

    Ok my set up

    I have 4 kicker ks 650's Rated 4 ohm each rms 65w
    Mtx marine 4 channel amp RMS is 45w x 4 channel @ 4 ohms
    I wire them straight up the tower 4 sets of wire, one set for each speaker

    One of the problems I am having is that they just dont seem to scream like I am use to kickers doing most kicker setups I have heard get real loud!

    The other problem I am having is that when I run my tower/subs for a while the alternator kicks in hard and makes a high pitched whine through my tower speakers varying with the rpm's of the motor

    for the whine problem I thought I had it licked I got new rca's and relocated them away from any power cables I also made a common ground for the amps/deck to eliminate any ground loops it works for lower levels but yet the whine comes when I have the music up for a while ???

    I have a kicker 350.4 4 channel amp in my truck
    Power (watts/channel) 2 Ohm Stereo 90 x 4
    Power (watts/channel) 4 Ohm Bridged Mono 175 x 2

    I have been thinking about using this for the tower speakers do you guys think that this could possibly kill 2 birds with one stone or am I gonna have to figure something out for the whining problem

    Also I am using the junk stock radio splitting signal for 2 amps is this an issue you guys have had causing a whine???
    2007 Outback V

  2. #2
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    Default

    Right off the bat i can say your underpowering the speakers hence the reason they don't sound so good. When you turn them up they're having to work too hard. The ZX350.4 is a lot closer to what you need to power those. No offense but i don't have much faith oin the MTX amp either.

    More clean power to your speakers with the amp working less may also correct some other issues but i'll let our resident experts address those.
    2007 Mobius LSV

  3. #3
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    Default

    I agree, some more power would help. And it's an easy enough test with that 350.4 at your disposal. Some of it could also be that the boat and especially tower is a big open environment and coaxial speakers can only do so much, no matter how good they are. So plug that 350.4 in and see if that changes things!

    I would be surprised if the whining was related though. jjolson's boat has the same issue and troubleshooting that is on my to-do list. I think it's related to the stereo switch, but too soon to be sure. I'll let you know what we figure out.

  4. #4
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    Im running 6 of them in boat and 4 of the 6X9's on the tower. Each is getting 75 rms and sound great. Your definately better off over powering them a little than under powering them.
    06 Outback V

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Razzman View Post
    Right off the bat i can say your underpowering the speakers hence the reason they don't sound so good. When you turn them up they're having to work too hard. The ZX350.4 is a lot closer to what you need to power those. No offense but i don't have much faith oin the MTX amp either.

    More clean power to your speakers with the amp working less may also correct some other issues but i'll let our resident experts address those.
    Thats what I was thinking I figure that kicker amp would be a better match for the tower speakers I should find the specific spec sheet for my amp

    the only reason I even bought the mtx is I found it on ebay for $25 figured it would be ok I have had decent luck in the past with mtx products but I always got amps and subs as a pair no mixing of brands
    2007 Outback V

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by brain_rinse View Post
    I agree, some more power would help. And it's an easy enough test with that 350.4 at your disposal. Some of it could also be that the boat and especially tower is a big open environment and coaxial speakers can only do so much, no matter how good they are. So plug that 350.4 in and see if that changes things!

    I would be surprised if the whining was related though. jjolson's boat has the same issue and troubleshooting that is on my to-do list. I think it's related to the stereo switch, but too soon to be sure. I'll let you know what we figure out.
    my boat doesnt do it all the time though .... Its driving me nuts I also thought about getting a new deck with a higher pre out voltage not sure what the specs are for the stock POS deck
    2007 Outback V

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by newty View Post
    Crux ill bet odds that your amp is the problem. Noise, lack of power etc. You just paid $25 for someone else's problem.
    I'd junk the amp.
    My .02
    Im gonna swap them out for sure

    Its too bad I cant take my boat out to test it for awhile

    edit: I found my manual that came with the kicker amp It will do 65w x 4 at 4ohm stereo that would be a perfect match for the tower speakers

    After reading thru the kicker manual I found the whine is probably from me having to set the gains way to high for the mtx amp to handle
    Last edited by c.rix; 04-01-2010 at 11:58 AM.
    2007 Outback V

  8. #8
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    Rix -

    Not so easy to answer these types of questions without trouble shooting directly with you on the phone. But here are a few things to look into:

    A whine like this is probably a ground loop. If it where a gain issue you'd have a high noise floor. You could try trying to isolate the amplifier with the issue by re plugging the RCA's and see if the issue follows the amp or its system wide.

    Steps to isolate the problem.

    Disconnect the RCA's from the amplifier and see if the whine is still there. If there is still a whine look for a speaker wire that is grounded to the tower or possibly touching the chassis of the amplifier.

    If the whine does go away there is a ground loop between your radio and the electrical system of the boat. Make sure no part of the chassis of the radio is touching any other piece of metal that could be grounded to the battery via another path. Look at the strap on the back of the radio and see where it is mounted. Also verify that all your amplifiers and radio are grounded to the same location on the battery and there are no loose connections. A loose intermittent ground connection can cause big problems.

    Last thing to look at before you punt on your radio as being junk is the antenna wire. Unplug the antenna and see if the whine goes away. If that fixes the problem the base of the antenna is touching something that is finding its way back to battery ground causing a ground loop.

    If you'd rather some help by phone, shoot me a PM.

    - Brian
    Exile Audio

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by c.rix View Post
    Ok my set up

    I have 4 kicker ks 650's Rated 4 ohm each rms 65w
    Mtx marine 4 channel amp RMS is 45w x 4 channel @ 4 ohms
    I wire them straight up the tower 4 sets of wire, one set for each speaker

    One of the problems I am having is that they just dont seem to scream like I am use to kickers doing most kicker setups I have heard get real loud!

    The other problem I am having is that when I run my tower/subs for a while the alternator kicks in hard and makes a high pitched whine through my tower speakers varying with the rpm's of the motor

    for the whine problem I thought I had it licked I got new rca's and relocated them away from any power cables I also made a common ground for the amps/deck to eliminate any ground loops it works for lower levels but yet the whine comes when I have the music up for a while ???

    I have a kicker 350.4 4 channel amp in my truck
    Power (watts/channel) 2 Ohm Stereo 90 x 4
    Power (watts/channel) 4 Ohm Bridged Mono 175 x 2

    I have been thinking about using this for the tower speakers do you guys think that this could possibly kill 2 birds with one stone or am I gonna have to figure something out for the whining problem

    Also I am using the junk stock radio splitting signal for 2 amps is this an issue you guys have had causing a whine???
    An intermittent whine can often point to a problem with your charging system. A voltage regulator diode could be the culprit. You might put a volt-meter on your battery when the whine starts. If you are seeing more than 14.4 volts you probably have a voltage regulator issue.

    You can disconnect the RCA's from the amp to see if the noice goes away. If it does, connect them back to the amp. Disconnect the RCA's from the radio. Does the noise go away? If so, the noise is either a ground loop as brian shares, or it could be noise getting in the radio.

    You mention a common ground for the amps and radio... Can you describe what you did further? Lots of times introducing additional grounding wire can make the problem worse.The best practice is to take the radio power wiring, (yellow, red AND black) to the power terminals of the amp. Connect the radio's ground, (black) wire right to the amp's ground terminal. Take the yellow wire to the amp's positive power terminal. Take the red power wire through a switch, (lots of options here, you just want to be able to turn the radio off, with a key switch, a relay, or whatever) and then straight to the amp's positive power terminal. Doing this ensures that the radio is at EXACTLY the same ground potential as the amp, AND the radio is getting its power from the same place, at the same voltage as the amp.

    Wiring the head to the amp solves a whole bunch of ills for boat stereo wiring.

    Finally, yes, a bigger amp is in order... As others have shared, it is better to slightly over-power a speaker than under-power it. You might turn the system on, but at a low level to make sure the tweeters are still working... Under-powering leads to clipping distortion that is notorious for taking out tweeters... If the tweeters are blown, that is the mnost common cause for the lackluster sound I thiink you aer describing, and low power amps do that easier than higher powered amps.

    If the tweeters are blown, considser new speakers in conjunction with a new amp. Whatever you decide on, for the tower speakers, remember to engage the hi-pass crossovers, minimum of 50 Hz, up to a typical setting of 80 Hz. Make sure bass boost is totally off. This will get the amp hooked up to the speakers for the tower application.... Let us know.

    Phil
    Kicker
    Last edited by philwsailz; 04-01-2010 at 01:23 PM.

  10. #10
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    Default

    brianpdx - I am going to get the boat hopefully this weekend I think first Im going to do is switch amps then check to make sure I dont have any wires touching the amp or tower itself

    philwsails - Yes I took off the black yellow from the stock deck and wired them to the towers amp power/ ground inputs I left the red going through the stock rockers switch. originally I had them going together through a distrubution block but I cant hear whining through the subs so I wired it to the towers amp. I dont hear any whine in the subs probably since the subs are low frequency right?


    After I get the kicker amp hooked up Im going to try the rca trick that you both posted


    Thanks for the replys guys
    I will post up again when I get into my boat to get this figured out Just wanted to get a jump start on this issue cause it was driving me nuts
    2007 Outback V

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