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Old    matt moss (mossy44)      Join Date: Oct 2001       05-19-2005, 3:55 PM Reply   
a friend of mine recommended me purchasing a capacitor for my stereo. i had planned on adding a 3rd battery. i currently have 2 batteries with an isololator. anyone have any opinions on whether i should just add a capacitor for now or add a 3rd battery? advantages? disadvantages? thanks for the help. i havent seen much talk about them on here, but i figured i would ask
Old    Nacho (denverd1)      Join Date: May 2004       05-19-2005, 4:07 PM Reply   
good caps can run a few hundred dollars. spend it on batts. you wont need a cap unless your pushing over 1000 watts rms and its debatable at that point.
Old    Nacho (denverd1)      Join Date: May 2004       05-19-2005, 4:12 PM Reply   
ADV: they store juice for a short period of time. so that hard hits don't sap your power supply.
DIS: they're expensive and pointless unless your system could peak around 2K watts.
is your friend selling it to you?
Old    Adam Curtis (acurtis_ttu)      Join Date: May 2004       05-19-2005, 4:43 PM Reply   
agreed.....I have one....don't knwo how much it really helps.....put your money in additional batteries and alt. upgrade. IMO they help if you have high powered subs, but that is highly debateable.
Old    Darren Yearsley (ralph)      Join Date: Apr 2002       05-19-2005, 5:16 PM Reply   
IMO caps are a bandaid for insufficently sized power & ground wires.
Old    deltahoosier            05-19-2005, 5:37 PM Reply   
Actually I would say if you do not have enough juice in your power supply, you have exactly what Darren just said. Even at that if you do not have a good enough power system, it may be too late to charge the power supply caps from the auxilary cap in time to meet the demand for the passage of music it is required for.
Old    mia            05-19-2005, 6:02 PM Reply   
what kind of sub amp are you running ?
Old    Mikeski (mikeski)      Join Date: Aug 2003       05-19-2005, 6:58 PM Reply   
There are lots of opinions that apply to various situations, but here is a quick test.

If your dash light illumination levels follow your music then you could benefit from a cap, if not I wouldn't waste the money.

A capacitor is the electrical equivalent of a shock absorber. Instead of opposing transient changes in motion it opposes transient changes of voltage.
Old    shane (auto)      Join Date: Aug 2002       05-19-2005, 9:02 PM Reply   
i run 2k watts and do just fine with two blue tops.
Old    Ryan Bush (ryanbush11)      Join Date: May 2003       05-19-2005, 9:11 PM Reply   
I'm running 2700 watts off of five blue tops, with 0 guage power wire. It's about 4 feet from the batteries to the distribution blocks. I had 2 memphis 1 farad caps last year, we took them out this year, and the batteries last londer before the voltage drops. and removing them did not affect the sound quality one bit.
Old    matt moss (mossy44)      Join Date: Oct 2001       05-19-2005, 10:01 PM Reply   
i am running 2000 watts right now. i might have to upgrade the amp running my subs though, i will have to wait and see. i have 2 10" W3v2's in a box underneath the drivers seat. the 4 speakers inside the boat. and a pair of 1010's on the tower. at the moment, i have 2 blue tops running and this will be my first time out on the water with everything hooked up and being out on the water for more than an hour.

i guess from what yall are saying, i am not gonna get one.

i will see what happens this weekend. thanks for the help.

hijack real quickly.....should i take out the batteries and charge them every night or during the week if i go boarding pretty much every weekend but not during the week?
Old    Ryan Bush (ryanbush11)      Join Date: May 2003       05-20-2005, 7:21 AM Reply   
I put a trickle charger on my boat every time we get home from the lake. and on the nights we stay at the lake i bring my snap on charger, it charges at 20 amps and takes between 8 - 12 hours to charge all 5 batteries depending on how much we run them down
Old    mia            05-20-2005, 8:35 AM Reply   
if your sub amp has unregulated power supply then a decent cap (like a bat cap) might help out.... if the sub amp has a regulated power supply then dont worry about the caps...
Old    salty87 (salty87)      Join Date: Jul 2002       05-20-2005, 11:07 AM Reply   
if you don't have the power you want from your setup, where will the power to charge the cap come from?
Old    whitechocolate            05-20-2005, 11:21 AM Reply   
Your question , Sould you add a 3rd battery or a cap,

IMO a 3rd battey will do your system better than ay cap. So my vote goes for a 3 rd battery
Old    bigdtx            05-20-2005, 12:00 PM Reply   
Only time I hear people talk about caps is when they're bitching that they drained their battery during the week.
Old    Rod McInnis (rodmcinnis)      Join Date: Sep 2002       05-20-2005, 4:06 PM Reply   
1) I don't understand the "cap vs battery" discussion unless you are trying to figure out where your money is worst spent. Having one doesn't preclude the other.

2) I am not sure what either one is going to do for you. I have never had an actual demonstration of a Cap doing any good, nor have I read any credible engineering based justification for a cap. I sincerely doubt that they do any good. Likewise, I don't see the value of a "3rd" battery. Second battery yes, 3rd no. If you are running so much power that you can't keep the second battery charged a third will only give you a little bit more running time before the battery is dead. If you need more power, install a larger alternator.
Old    mia            05-21-2005, 9:41 AM Reply   
a cap can help out with the sound quality of the bass amp which helps out the other amps (less draw from the battery on "bass hits") that have unregulated power supplies...

it really cleans up the music transients and the sound imo..some people are looking for louder db when they add caps or some cases it will since most gear sounds better @ 14v vs 10v-12v..also, extra optima batteries do help out...

i have heard it in a friends bmw and my car as well (was using a huge class a/b amp on (zapco 900/1, kicker zr 1000 on the subs)... but when we moved to the class d with reglulated power supplies on the bass amps(jl) we didnt notice a differnce with the caps...

Old    Psyclone (cyclonecj)      Join Date: Jul 2001       05-21-2005, 11:20 AM Reply   
They can't fit enough capacitance in a high power car stereo amp, regulation or not. They take up a lot of real estate and are extremely expensive when made of the materials required to make them small enough to fit into an amp chassis.

I've used relatively small (330k ufd) 20vdc physically large computer caps that add an undeniable punch for very low cost, I paid 10$ ea. and ran two in parallel for .660 MFD. I agree that bigger wire helps, but at 5$ a foot...Yeah, it's a bandaid but sometimes bandaids are OK. For a class A, A/B amp they can help.

A class D amp IS by definition an audio freq. modulated switching power supply. All it does is produce a square wave output at the +/- DC rail voltage, at whatever ac input from 20-400 hz or less happens to be. It works and is pretty efficient for reproducing LF audio. I never tried a cap with one but the fact that the power supply has exponentially more time to react to peaks at low frequencies vs. 20khz means that an external cap probably wouldn't improve things much if at all.

I didn't want to hassle with a cap on my boat, so I bought a deep cell optima and used very short runs of big wire to the amp. That's the simplest and best (not cheapest) way to do it.
Old    mia            05-21-2005, 12:40 PM Reply   
to my ears...there is a noticeble difference between regulated power supply amps and non regulated power supplies wether it is class d or class a/b when the volume gets turned up..

i found this out when i was running old school ppi art series amps ( still a awesome amp- i should have never sold them)
Old    Psyclone (cyclonecj)      Join Date: Jul 2001       05-21-2005, 8:25 PM Reply   
I have been watching them on Ebay for a while. I still have an art series three way crossover and want clean original amps to go with it. I want that four foot long one:-)


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