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Thread: Couple of questions about the monsoon system

  1. #1
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    Couple of questions about the monsoon system

    Okay, my turn in the "newbie" barrel. I'm installing a new system in my 01 VW Beetle and when I first got the car, I noticed that that the Monsoon system sucked. I am not an audiophile, but the sound just sucked. That was okay, because I had an aftermarket HU that I brought over from my old car. I opened up the dash, cut the Monsoon plug off, wired in the new HU and it sounds great.

    I never had any idea that the Monsoon audio system was somehow "special". As in Evil. For whatever reason, the stock HU put out enough power to signal the Monsoon amp to turn on and I never had a clue that it was even there until I poked around the back of the car a couple of months ago and realized that little amp was in there.

    Because my new computer system will be installed in the dash where the HU currently is, I will be ditching the HU and am seeking advice on this. I've actually on Monsoons and read most of the posts here about the amp. R32Juhl says if you put a 5volt signal on the left channel to create a voltage differential, it will turn the amp on and you're golden. I guess I'm seeking validation that this is true - Put a 5v regulator on the left channel speaker and it will adequately amplify my line level out from the computer? Is he the only one who has done this?

    Looks like I have the following options, (in order of cost):

    1. Keep my head unit and just hide it somewhere, like an amplifier
    2. Run line level into the Monsoon amp, use 5 volt regulator on left channel to trigger it on.
    3. Replace the headunit with a low power amp (25 watts?) and run that into the Monsoon system
    4. Replace the Monsoon amp with an amp and crossovers/some other audio stuff? to deal with non-standard speaker resistances.
    5. Same as 3, but also get new speakers.

    I'd just as soon replace the damn thing with a real amp but the speakers are lunatic 4 and 2 ohms and you have to put crossovers and crap that a) seem unnecessarily complicated and b) are slightly above my head for audio work, OR I replace the speakers. Both options cost bucks and the system sounds fine to me now.

    Remember, I'm not an audiophile and I'm old. It would be great to spend $1,000 on a new system that completely flushes the Monsoon down the toilet, speakers and all but I don't hear as well as I used to and the current system as it is sounds fine to me so it would probably be a waste.

    Advice and opinions are welcome.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
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    Constant Bitrate NeckPayne's Avatar
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    I've been checking these boards for more info on monsoon also. I posted the following in another thread but it seems appropriate.....

    Quote Originally Posted by NeckPayne
    In case anyone still surfs to this thread, since I got confused myself.... It seems R32 Juhl figured out an answer on this. For those of us who have just enough money (and spousal support) to devote to the "carputer" and not upgrading the system with new headunits, amps, or speakers, this option needs to elaborated on.

    Check out his install thread:
    2004 VW R32 Install - NOT DIAL-UP FRIENDLY
    Post #81 was the "Eureka"

    Seems as though the HU supplies a 5v current (yes, I know voltage is differential and amperage is current) through the left speaker which acts as a turn on lead to the monsoon amp. So its possible to ditch the HU and wire straight to the monsoon amp from the soundcard. I'm not quite sure if from what I read from Juhl's post if this is the same as BTL (bridge-tied load) in which instead of a speaker signal comparing a positive voltage to ground, the voltage is balanced between the two leads. So if a 12 volt signal is used, bridge tied loads send +6V to one channel and -6V to the other. In this way, less voltage can be used to effect greater amplification.

    What I'm not sure is if what Juhl's suggesting is by throwing this 5v onto the left common, if we are "creating" the BTL and balancing this against the speaker output from the soundcard. In essence, the BTL input is what triggers the amp to "turn on."

    Some people have mentioned that the monsoon amp requires speaker level input. Is this because they were unsure of this BTL requirement, or is it that speaker level output is BTL and so that's why we're able to get it to work now. And then, does Juhl's solution work because we're "fooling" the amp.

    Either way, I still don't understand how exactly to set this up. Also, there is some issue regarding a difference between the 2001 monsoon and the 2000 and >2001.5 monsoon system wirings. I have the single DIN monsoon from 2001, does this make it the 2001 instead of the 2001.5 or is that not the deciding factor.

    Thanks for anyone's help!!

  3. #3
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    Ha! It was your post that got me as far as figuring out the 5 volt issue! Thanks, hopefully someone will enlighten us.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

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    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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    If your Monsoon system is anything like the the stock system found in 98-02 F-bodies (Z-28-SS-Trans Am-WS6) the amplifier is garbage too. Not only does the Monsoon head unit artificially boost frequencies, causing distortion, but the amplifier is way underrated and sounds like crap. What must be done in F-bodies, is to rewire everything with new wire. Buy yourself an affordable, used, scratch-free 4 channel amp off Ebay:
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...sPageName=WDVW
    or
    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...786645132&rd=1
    and a decent amp wiring kit:
    http://www.knukonceptz.com/productDe...rodID=KOL-AK44
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    Thanks for the reply. I realize the monsoon is more properly referred to as the monsuck and that I properly ought to replace it with an honest to goodness amplifier made by a reputable outfit like Rockford Fosgate.

    However, I think the tweaters in the front are 2 ohm while the door and rear speakers are 4 ohm or something along these lines. Simply connecting an amp to all of that won't work properly, will it?

    There's a thread going called "I'm and amp retard". I'm actually worse. When it comes to amps or car audio, I'm actually in the autistic category. AFAIK, I'd need to get a set of crossovers for the speakers to handle the different impedences and such, right? If so, that seems unnecessarily complex for a system that to my ears sounds fine right now.

    If I'm asking some really stupid questions that I can research on my own, please give me a link to understanding car audio and throw me the search icon.
    Quote Originally Posted by ghettocruzer View Post
    I was gung ho on building a PC [until] just recently. However, between my new phone having internet and GPS and all...and this kit...Im starting to have trouble justfiying it haha.
    Want to:
    -Find out about the new iBug iPad install?
    -Find out about carPC's in just 5 minutes? View the Car PC 101 video

  6. #6
    Maximum Bitrate Snootch's Avatar
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