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WakeWorld Discussion Board » >> Boats, Accessories & Tow Vehicles Archive » Archive through January 14, 2005 » Systems Amps? « Previous Next »
By Squid (twakess) on Sunday, December 05, 2004 - 10:14 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I been out of the amps game for along time. Back in 88 it was all zapco & fosgate (ya ya I know old schooler). If you are old school and can rember the bass days of TOO $hort. What amps would you sugest to push two W7's JLs or MTX 9500s. I would like to go with all Zapco or is that just a name now? I am kinda in the dark hear any in put would be help full.
By Paul (gherk) on Sunday, December 05, 2004 - 10:26 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Squid just let your riding do the talking. Forget about amps and get a perfect pass.
By mike (clubmyke) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 7:24 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
squid... i remember those days.

it is okay to be old school...old school is cool.

zapco still make great amps..however there has been a couple new designs and companies that are worth investigating.

here we go....

1. class d sub amps - the only way to go when driving very cool and draw less current. there is no downside at all with this design.

2. regulated power supplies - operates at capacity despite line voltage. (voltage can be 12v to 15v) and the output will be the same..this is really important in high powered/multiamp system when there is a always a draw. you dont have to worry about the line voltage dropping to 12v - you will still have full output from the amps

i would look at jl audio for the sub amps...they have a slash series that is state of the art and have been the most copied sub amp that i am aware of - it is state of the art and reasonably priced... keep in mind you will probley need the 1000/1 to push 2 j w7's..

i run 2 zapcos reference(mid/highs) and a jl 500/1(subs)in my car and 4 jls (3-300/4 for mid/highs and a500/1for subs) in my boat...

i have tried the all jl in my car and liked it alot..there is not a big difference in the amps- just a difference sonic presentation. the zapcos are very detailed and dynamic while the jl's have a very smooth/warm/laid back presentation... is one better than the different..
i am going to try balanced outputs in the car since my eclipse deck has balanced outputs..

but getting back to the post.. the jl amps are a state of art design, rock solid reliability, runs cool, wont get hot and shut down, and the sub crossover is amazing and flexible(also the company underspecs the amps - there 500/1 will "easily"go 650 and 1000/1 will "easily" go 1175-1200)

zapco does make a class d sub amp ( havent tried it) but i dont know if it has the crossover and the regulated power supply..

good luck,


(Message edited by clubmyke on December 06, 2004)

By Buzz (buzz_grande) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 10:02 am:    Edit Post Delete Post
I have done a bunch of research and have decided to run 2 Zapco amps in my new boat. The stereo shop I am getting my work done at really knows their stuff, have won national competitions, and don't carry any (what some might call) low end or general consumer stuff. When I was there the other day, they were putting in $3-6,000 systems in a Hummer, Mercedes, and a Jaguar. They have a good amount of experience with boats also. They carry several brands of amps, and recommended the Zapco's for the speakers I am getting. They even called Image Dynamics to see exactlly what speakers they werte going to be using in the new Defcon "Reference" series. Then they decided on which amp would run them the best, and power required.

Sorry, I am rambling. To get back to the point, there are many good amps out there, and in the end, they come down to personal preference as far as sound quality, etc. I am sure I will be more than happy with Zapco, but there are many others that will probably suit you needs fine also.

By Chad Miranda (forwaken) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 1:05 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
I have two amps I'll sale to you for a 1000 bucks squid.

(Message edited by forwaken on December 06, 2004)

By Grant West (whitechocolate) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 1:28 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Hey Squid

#1 it sounds like you are still unshure about what subs you want to run you talked about the W7 and the 9500, check out this thread. I tested both subs the 9500 didnt do so well

If you decide to run a W7 you are going to need to run at least 1000 watts to each one before your going to get the best results. I ran a W7 with a JL 1000/1 and it was ok at best. When I put 1600 watts to it it woke that sub up big time. I would say if your not going to run a amp that pushes more than 1300 watts in 3 ohms then dont run a W7

Choose your speakers first and then pick a amp that will best power your sub.

this advice is from someone that has done the testing.

Speaking of that: Mike have you ever Ran 2 W7's off of 1 JL 1000/1? you seem to know alot but I cant understand this advice.

And Yes I agree the ZAPCO shizz is BAD A$$

By Squid (twakess) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 2:15 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Thanks for all the input. I know where I am headed now.
By Colin Fichman (tidalwake0504) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 7:01 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
what do you think of this amp????
By muji (mujibur) on Monday, December 06, 2004 - 10:33 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
You should look at Hifonics - great stuff for the money. The only speaks that could handle the power of the BX 2200D (500.00) or the XX Colossus (650.00) was the 12 inch W7's amp sees 1.38 Ohms with 2 speaks - they pound like no tomorrow with the bass boost at 18db and the gain on the amp all the way up. Very clean amps and stable (low heat) - just need to ensure you feed them the correct power cable size. Personally i would get the XX bad boy since the price delta is not that much between the 2, but you will need a GOOD pro install with the XX series. Don't let the price fool you these guys make GREAT stuff - they also answer the phone if you need any questions answered.
By mike (clubmyke) on Tuesday, December 07, 2004 - 1:08 am:    Edit Post Delete Post

i have to admit i am very, very new to marine audio systems...however my experience has been with high end 2 channel and high end car...

with saying that.. system design and system "synergy" is major factor.

i havent ran w7's ( ran w6's awhile back)... nor the jl 1000/1 (i have run 2 jl 500/1's) and it was too much power.. i got along with just one 500/1 in my system.

the biggest sub amp i have ever ran a big zapco ag1000 in mono mode ( i swapped out the big zapco for the 2 jl 500/1's and havent looked again for another sub amp - i found out that ONE jl 500/1 did better than 1 900 watt zapco on my subs

i suggested the jl 1000/1 because it it should do fine...i have heard 1000/1 in a different car systems and it was always "WOW" ( the subs were high quality -boston acoustics, eclipse, dynauadio)

i would think the jl 1000/1 would be enough... Please keep in mind, all the head units were very, very high quality with high output / low impedence pre-amp sections.

The head unit plays a crucial role in the install (the most crucial imo)- marine head units are wwwaaaayyyy behind and unsuitable for any type of mid to high end install ( the mulitple wired remotes is the only advantage), the preamp section wont output enough(forget about using a y adapter on them). if you are splitting (y adapters) on the clarion- you are asking the preamp section of the deck to to run at 1/2 the impedence and 1/2 the voltage which is too low for most amps..

2 volts preamp output is not enough for the jl 1000/1 (or any multi amp system)... the jl needs to be driven by at least 5v-12"low output impedence design" preamp that is designed to drive long interconnects and mutliple sets.

if you were using the clarion head unit, you are asking the "amplifers pre-amp section" to make up the difference.. this is probley why the 1000/1 didnt work out( i am taking a educated guess here). the output will be low because the input from the head unit is low and the amp has to be turned up beyond to compensate ( hence equipment mismatch)

there is strong chance(imo) the amp you replaced the 1000/1 with a amp that might have a more sensitive preamp section.

in regards to zapco..they are very nice amps i run zapco reference 350's in my car(2 monoblocks - 1 amp per component speaker and they are great amps ( mid/highs- havent run them balanced yet - this would allow for 16v preamp output from the eclipse balanced deck) and jl 500/1 for my subs. I have also tried the jl 350/4 running in a 2 channel mode (150 wpc) and it was very, very nice..i would say one wasnt better than the other in this mid/high setup....each one had a different sonic signature... ( the current car system is pretty revealing)...

in regards to zapco class a/b sub amps vs. class d jl subs amps...

i would have to give the nod to the jl...the regulated power supply and the crossover is the state of the art... the sound quality and slam is very, very good.

btw, i am not afflilated with the audio industry ( i am pharmacueutical rep who is a car and home audiophile)

sorry for the techical gobbly gook

good luck with the system..


(Message edited by clubmyke on December 07, 2004)

By matthew hunt (mhunt) on Saturday, December 11, 2004 - 10:14 pm:    Edit Post Delete Post
Help me out here. I need an amp for a couple of 12" subs. I've looked on Ebay a little bit. I was looking to spend around $200. I realize that won't get me the best, what's the best I could get in that price range though. Thanks for the help........
By mike (clubmyke) on Sunday, December 12, 2004 - 5:37 am:    Edit Post Delete Post

if you spend a little more and look /wait ($275-ish).

you can get a jl 500/1 that will pound those 12's into submission...(the 500/1 is state of the art and a very good deal used, just keep your eyes open.

kicker also makes a good amp, i am not familair with the newer models but a zr600/zr1000 are very very powerful. would also check into used kicker, ppi, adcom, orion, mmats, older rockford, alpine..( the class d designs for subs are the way to go, they run very cool and wont shut down)

would also check into the repairability of the model you are looking at ( ie. some older ppi's are no longer serviced by ppi, they dropped all parts and repair services. this is bummer because the older "art" series are very, very good amps. this lack of support is what moved me from ppi to zapco/jl)

hope that helps,


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