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Thread: car audio wiring harness -> computer speaker port ??

  1. #1
    Variable Bitrate nadir_s's Avatar
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    car audio wiring harness -> computer speaker port ??

    so how is it actually done? I'm pretty comfortable with splicing dicing audio wires and figuring out how to power the speakers and such. I know there are different cars with different premium sound systems like Bose... but I'd like to know how it's done for a stock non-premium system. I'm guessing an amp is required as well? just like to get an idea... thanks

    my goal is to replace the headunit with a carcomputer.
    [ 5-spd 1996 M A X i M A SE ]

  2. #2
    Maximum Bitrate Altimat's Avatar
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    You just use your line out or headphone out from the PC, and feed it into an amp(s).
    Fabricator

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    Variable Bitrate nadir_s's Avatar
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    so does that require buying an amp that has an auxilery input feature? Or do you divide the single stereo RCA that would be coming from my PC to all 4 channels on the amp? or do both work? lol, im starting to confuse myself.

    also, is there any way to do it without having to buy an AMP?

    thanks for your input!
    [ 5-spd 1996 M A X i M A SE ]

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    What kind of deck do you have? Some decks have aux inputs already, I have an old pioneer cd player, and I purchased a device that turns the CD Changer input into and aux via RCA connectors. But I would look into what you can find from the deck mfg.
    New CarPC on the way again I think. I miss my old one!!!

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    FLAC robiewp's Avatar
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    if you're completely replacing the head unit, yes you will need some sort of amp (unlesss the car's sound system already has one external to the head unit). If you're comfortable rooting arround your car, an audio shop you're friendly with should be able to give you the color codes for the speakers, and you can either tap into them anywhere convenient, or you can tap into them at the head unit. For my installation I originally tapped into everything running along the harness on the floor, but then later pulled my own 14 gauge for everything.

    As for an amp, what you need is specific to what is in the existing setup. An audio place should be able to give you a good reccomendation here too.

    Connection to the amp is straght forward: just get a mini to RCA adapater (or as many as you need to accomidate the channels of the amp and your car) and plug directly into the amp. It's not essential but it's nice to have an amp with a master volume control- when mixing components (in this case your stock speakers with an aftermarket amp) you can't expect the min and max volume to be apropriate all of the time...
    car computer rev 5: 8" lilliput and usual suspects

  6. #6
    Variable Bitrate nadir_s's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by robiewp
    if you're completely replacing the head unit, yes you will need some sort of amp (unlesss the car's sound system already has one external to the head unit). If you're comfortable rooting arround your car, an audio shop you're friendly with should be able to give you the color codes for the speakers, and you can either tap into them anywhere convenient, or you can tap into them at the head unit. For my installation I originally tapped into everything running along the harness on the floor, but then later pulled my own 14 gauge for everything.

    As for an amp, what you need is specific to what is in the existing setup. An audio place should be able to give you a good reccomendation here too.

    Connection to the amp is straght forward: just get a mini to RCA adapater (or as many as you need to accomidate the channels of the amp and your car) and plug directly into the amp. It's not essential but it's nice to have an amp with a master volume control- when mixing components (in this case your stock speakers with an aftermarket amp) you can't expect the min and max volume to be apropriate all of the time...
    wow, thanks for the detailed reply. I think I understand now. I'm familiar with the color codes and such... I recently changed my deck and had to learn all that. It got a bit complicated too because I was using an aftermarket HU (pioneer premier 550mp) with my OEM Bose components. Something to similar to what you mentioned about having a master volume control... i bought this adapter for $25 (made by scosche)... it is specically marketed towards connecting aftermarket headunits to OEM premium audio sytems. It basically does what you mentioned... manual dial for volume control on each channel.

    hmm... is an AMP really necessary? What happens if I hook the speakers straight to the computer? Let's say I even get that adapter as a manual volume control to put between the speaker and computer... what would happen? Thanks
    [ 5-spd 1996 M A X i M A SE ]

  7. #7
    FLAC robiewp's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nadir_s
    hmm... is an AMP really necessary? What happens if I hook the speakers straight to the computer? Let's say I even get that adapter as a manual volume control to put between the speaker and computer... what would happen? Thanks
    you would have to turn the engine off to hear anything, at max volume. I have an amp just for a pair of headphones (Grado RS), to give you some perspective.

    as for using an amp, it sounds like you have the knowledge and stuff (short the amp), so go for it!
    car computer rev 5: 8" lilliput and usual suspects

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    Maximum Bitrate SjLucky's Avatar
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    ok I will point out a quick solution to a daunting problem with wires
    go get a adpator (Ive been drinking so for the spelling its been a big night) from wal-mart for your make of car and printed on those wires are what each wire is for... rig your amp turn-on and PS turn-on to the same wire (amp turn-on) rig up the speaker wires from your amp to your adpator and lickity split your up and running like two straight convicts from the shower after dropping the soap
    Quote Originally Posted by menudude View Post
    thank you all for your help minus the useless post by sjlucky...

  9. #9
    I'm sorry, and you are....? frodobaggins's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SjLucky
    lickity split your up and running like two straight convicts from the shower after dropping the soap


    He speaks from experience on this one
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  10. #10
    Maximum Bitrate SjLucky's Avatar
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    hey it wasnt my fault you dropped the soap
    Quote Originally Posted by menudude View Post
    thank you all for your help minus the useless post by sjlucky...

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