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Boat Stereo

Post in 'DIY and General non-hearth advice' started by Czech, May 5, 2008.

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  1. Czech

    Czech Minister of Fire

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    Being that I can't afford the big boat yet, thought I'd work on my 17' fishing boat last weekend. I'm having a little issue with the stereo, it's just your standard stereo/cd player hooked up to four speakers, not sure the brand name. Problem is, when I crank up the volume a bit, it totally cuts out power wise, no sound, display not lit. Then after a few seconds it comes back on, then cuts out again and repeats the process. If I play it at a lower volume, it plays fine. I checked all the connections that I could find, only thing I see that might be an issue is the power wire is spliced with a fairly small gauge chunk of wire. Thoughts? Thanks.

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  2. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    My guess is a relay that is tripping inside. Its junk right now so pull it appart and look at it. If you can fix it great...if not you will learn something and you get to buy a new toy! Really though, I think it is a relay and you can probably get one at radio shack. May be tricky to solder it to a boar though.
  3. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Yeah, I don't think the boar would be that happy if you try to solder anything to it. :)

    Jay
  4. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    Good catch!
  5. Czech

    Czech Minister of Fire

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    I've hunted boars, I sure as heck will not try and solder them in any way, at least until they take a few 7mm rounds that is. Back OT, do you guys think a short somewhere on the speaks would do it? Or the skinny power supply wire splice? I don't use it much when fishing other than listening to a ball game, but when I'm busting hump up the river with the hat backwards it's nice to hear the tunes even though the 4 stroke Merc is pretty quiet. It did seem to be able to be played louder after messing with wiring last weekend, I'm still thinking I've got a short to ground. Speaking of ground, I did find that the metal mounting strap was not secured other than being pushed onto the bolt on the back of the stereo (no nut). Thoughts? Jay, the relay makes sense, I know if I 'go in', it will for sure be junk at that point, even with my $19.95 cold solder tool that came with the kitchen knives! Thanks again all, who said something about a hole in the water you throw money into? I do love it....
  6. burntime

    burntime New Member

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    Could be a grounded speaker but usually that is only on more expensive units...my yamaha home stereo has it. Best to try it, you are not out anything and if they are not taped well you would want to do it before the new one is installed. Good luck!
  7. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    Could be an impedance mismatch between the speakers and the amp. Or it could be that the amp just doesn't have the power needed to provide the volume desired and is shutting off via it's protection circuits.
  8. Jay H

    Jay H New Member

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    Thermal or clipping (power related) are certainly problems, but I know my car amplifier I have has a LED that will turn on if the thermal protection comes on. Clipping you would just hear it and the amp wouldn't actually necessaryly "shut off".

    Doe the power light (assuming it has one) actually go off when you have a problem? If you have a fuse inline with the amp, check to make sure it's tight..

    Jay
  9. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    There are a couple of potential spots to look at. First, get rid of the small gauge power wire. Starving a stereo for power WILL cause a shut down on many models. BeGreen also has a good point. To test the impedance issue is pretty easy. Follow me if you will:

    1st - do you have left/right AND front/rear control of the speakers? If yes, then impedance is probably not your problem because most stereos that have 4 channels will also handle 4 ohm speakers, and that is typically the lowest impedance speakers on the store shelves. This is assuming that you have 4 matched (impedance) speakers of either 4 or 8 ohm.

    2nd - if you only have left/right control then you could have a problem with a 4 speaker arrangement. This could happen if you had 4 4ohm speakers connected in parallel, giving a total impedance load of 2ohms per channel. Most run of the mill stereos/amps will NOT hold a stable 2 ohm load. This will cause excessive draw on the stereos amp and create a high temp or shut down (or burn up) scenario especially at higher volumes. (the more the speaker cone moves in and out, the greater "swing" of your impedance).

    Hope this makes sense. Step 1 and 2 does not cover all possible impedance issues, but for run of the mill components it will hold pretty true. It is also possible, but not as likely that one of your speakers has had a voice coil short out somewhere in the winding. This can cause very strange things to happen, too long to type.

    And - it is possible that you are expecting too much from your stereo, and adding more power (oooh, oooh) is the only choice.

    p.s. I am a stereo super freak. My 73 challenger has a 17 speaker (odd number because of front surround stage), 3 amplifiers, electronic sound processor (for surround sound) and fully adjustable freq. control board. Oh, and it gets its power feed from a 2 gauge welding cable. Lets not go into the home stereo.
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