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Made a Boat Stereo on a Budget

 
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j13jjs
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Joined: 20 May 2010
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City: Dahlonega

PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 4:09 am    Post subject: Made a Boat Stereo on a Budget Reply with quote

Well I came up with an idea that really simplifies and saves money on a boat stereo, hope this helps someone.

So all I wanted was 4 well performing mid range speakers and iPod hookup; I wasn't really happy with any of the head units I was finding, either too much money or looked like shitty quality.

Also with powering 4 speakers especially if I decided to make it 6 speakers later on would really require an external amplifier also as most head units can't sufficiently more than two speakers to their full ability.

Then I realized since the ONLY source I'd be using was an iPod (never listen to radio, f'n commercials ruin it) that I didn't need a head unit.

Instead I just bought the speakers and a regular amplifier that I'd need anyways. I'm using a cable to go from my iPods headphone jack into regular coaxial cables which is plugged directly into the input on the amp.

Once you have the gain properly adjusted on the amp you can just use the iPod to control volume and for anyone who doesn't know iPod's also have equalizer settings so you can set it up to your taste. Sounds great.

Also if you want to be able to leave your iPod in the boat all the time just buy a car charger and wire it off the amps 12v power and ground.

You can also get small RF wireless remotes that plug into the iPod so you can have controls on your dash if you want.

The only limitation with this method is if I had a subwoofer or multiple amps hooked up it would be difficult to fine tune all the settings- with that I'm sure I'll end up buying a head unit down the road when I put subs in my boat but for now this works great and saved me a couple hundred bucks on an unnecessary head unit.

Let me know if anyone has questions about wiring any of this up although really it's less involved then the traditional system and shouldn't be too difficult for anyone.
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jjaszkow
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Joined: 25 Jul 2006
Posts: 2078
City: Some Airport

PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 5:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

j13jjs, that installation works well for iPod only use. Rather than a head unit, I would probably just install a good EQ like the Wetsounds WS-420 and plug your iPod into that. I think that that will give you the control over your system in the manner you would like.
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brichter14
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PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

problem with that is that you bypass the internal speakers in the boat, which kinda sucks
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browneye253
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Joined: 07 Jul 2008
Posts: 115
City: Tulsa

PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 8:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

brichter14 wrote:
problem with that is that you bypass the internal speakers in the boat, which kinda sucks


How does that bypass the in boat speakers? He's already running the in boats off an amp. He would just use the iPod as a direct line in to the EQ and run all of the amps out of the eq allowing him to hookup as many amps and speakers as he wanted to running all from the iPod with no head unit.

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My Boat: 2008 Sea Ray 205 Sport w/ Tower
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j13jjs
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Joined: 20 May 2010
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PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 11:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yea the more I think about it the more unnecessary a head unit it is going to be for my boat; getting an external equalizer is a great idea for when I expand the system to include additional amps for tower speakers and a sub (down the road, don't have either yet)
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brichter14
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PostPosted: Jun 16, 2010 12:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess i just read it as one amp to the tower speakers, browsing forums in class....
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