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    What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Hello everyone.

    I am getting a 1997 nissan altima from a family member and im looking to upgrade the audio system. I was looking at a new head unit, sub and amp and 2 front speakers. I have read many reviews online and more powerful amps tend to dim headlights and require a high output alternator. I was looking at 2 12" Kicker CVRs which are rated at 400 watts RMS each and an 800 watt RMS amp. However, im thinking this is going to be too much for the alternator. Im not positive but im pretty sure the alternator is 80 amps so what do you recommend is a good size for an amp in terms of watts? I will find a sub based on wattage and which amp i choose to get. I would rather not upgrade the alternator and have read that capacitors are no good. Im sure its hard to guess how much power will be sufficient without dimming the headlights or causing damage but im just looking for an estimate. Maybe a 600 watt? I appreciate suggestions. Thanks







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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Boss

    But for real, I'd look at finding a decent 1.5k amp. You can always turn the gain down, and if you want more power later, you'll have it.



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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    ive got an 01 maxima-running a dd m1c at around 1200w rms and a megaloud 90wx4 rms. running stock elecrical other than the big three and the lowest ive seen my voltage drop is 13.1 and get almost unnoticable dimmage of my headlights.
    Mines got a V6 so the alt is probably a little bigger but i think you could do 800-1000w safely if you upgrade you alt + and - leads.




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Ok thanks for the replies. I just dont want to buy an amp and sub and then find out i have to put extra money down for a new alternator cause my current alternator cant handle it. I might try the 800 watt or see if a friend has one i can borrow just to test it. Thanks for the responses




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    The power ratings on those Kicker subs is a joke. I wouldn't be surprised if that number is for a 'pair' of subwoofers.

    I'd look for a nice 3 or 5ch amp to run your system. Arc has some new D-Class amps that look really interesting and a lot of people like JL's newer XD & HD amps. These things are tiny and would mount real nicely under your rear deck or tucked away somewhere stealthy.

    FWIW, I use an old Xtant 3ch that has a 100A fuse and is 2ft long; no upgraded alternator or "Big 3". With the heat on high, the rear defroster going, seat warmers on max, lights on, and the windshield wipers going...no dimming at all when I'm idling. I do use a cap though




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Just wondering, if i got 2 kicker 07CVR102 rated at 400 watt RMS each, can i use a 700 watt RMS @ 2 ohm to power them both? I thought i read you can get an amp anywhere from 75 to 150% of RMS of sub. Maybe an amp like Kenwood XR-1S? Thanks




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    if you are interested I have a newish kicker 2011 dx 1000 watt@2 ohms...



    1999 Tahoe
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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    I would but im trying to go with a lower wattage amp to reduce alternator strain




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    do the big three and maybe add an extra battery, but I ran it for a little while with my stock battery and alt. and I only had a .5 voltage drop.



    1999 Tahoe
    2 sa12s
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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Again.....just turn the gain down. Just because it can put out 1.5kw doesn't mean you have to crank it up, and use it to it's full potential.

    And you'll eventually want more, so the extra overhead will be nice. And you'll only need to do the big 3 and a decent battery to use it.

    Trust me here, go with a decent 1.5k, and just turn it down until you decide you want more.

    And you can get nice 1.5kw's cheap. It's kind of like the daily driver standard.



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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Regardless of what gear you get, you should do the big 3 before installing any amp.
    That, alone, will be one of the biggest electrical(and cheapest) upgrades you can do.

    If you do not want to get to carried away, look into doing just 1 sub in a well built, ported box. (IMO)



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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    sa8 on 600 watts in a well made ported box will yield a very nice output for OP IMO...



    1999 Tahoe
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    4th order
    145.18 @33z... with less than 500 watts!

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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Ok thanks for the recommendations everyone. I'll be doing the big 3 this weekend hopefully and maybe get a new battery and I think I'll go with a nicer amp and see where that leaves me. I'll post back if I need any help or any other questions. Thanks




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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Quote Originally Posted by bumpin101 View Post
    sa8 on 600 watts in a well made ported box will yield a very nice output for OP IMO...
    Not a bad idea....and you would still have usable room left over.



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    Re: What amp should i get without causing headlight dimming?

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_A View Post
    Ok thanks for the recommendations everyone. I'll be doing the big 3 this weekend hopefully and maybe get a new battery and I think I'll go with a nicer amp and see where that leaves me. I'll post back if I need any help or any other questions. Thanks
    Does your car start on a cold day? You don't need a battery...
    Do the wires under your hood get warm when you run your amp? No, you don't need 'the big 3'.

    The big 3 and buying an expensive battery is almost always a waste of money. You're better off buying a smaller & higher quality amp instead of spending the $$$ on stuff you don't need and that will not make a lick of difference. Buy the right equipment for your application and not whatever has the most zeros on the end of it. If you need fire hose power cabling and a $200 battery in order to run an amp in your car; you bought the wrong amp.

    You do not need 1000+ watts to have a nice sounding and loud system. If done right (install & product selection), you can get loud & sound great with 1/2 that power.

    And if anyone recommends you to buy sound deadening for your 15 year old car; don't pay attention to them. If you buy a good amp, you'll probably keep it and put it in your next car or 3. You're not going to be able to do the same with sound deadening and you're probably not going to keep that car very long.




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