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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey guys,

So eventually the stock subwoofer in my Z has to go, and the aftermarket sub is going to get a new amp to push it. I'm wondering what size the wire is going from the stock amp to the stock sub, because if it's thick enough it would be really nice to be able to put the amp behind the head unit and use the speaker wire that's already routed through the car. I'm not looking to push crazy amounts of power, I'm thinking 300-400 watts RMS but I haven't decided on anything yet. I've been looking on this site for the answer and have struck out so far. I believe someone has installed an amp and used the stock wires but I would still like to know how many watts they could handle.

So does anyone happen to know the wire gauge?
Thanks
 

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Can you pull the radio or sub or the amp and look? The wires maybe labeled. The cars with the factory sub there is an amplifier already driving the sub if you add another amplifier to it that may cause noise. Many who have added amps to this car have mentioned issues. I presume depending on how it was done they are not only amplifying the signal but the noise. IMO if you are going to upgrade the sub upgrade the whole system and match it properly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm changing the head unit soon, the parts are in the mail, so when I do that I'll see if I can get up to the factory amp and check. I didn't ever think of interference between the amps however, so thanks for the heads up on that. How close are we talking? Have people had interference issues putting the sub amp in the glove box? I may end up installing a new amp for the other 6 speakers eventually, but initially I think the sub is outrun by the door speakers. I'd just have to pull the radio out again which I'm not too concerned about.

Edit: I just realized I may have misinterpreted your reply but I'm not sure. To be clear, I do not plan to run one amp into the other. I would be cutting the sub output wires from the factory amp and sending the new amp out those wires. So the factory amp wouldn't have anything to do with the sub anymore.
 

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Likely interference is caused when the high level amp outputs are the input to an aftermarket amp with high level input. Any noise from the factory amp and anything the sub wires pick up along the way are then amplified by the aftermarket amp.

At subwoofer frequencies probably not a huge deal. Not much in a car makes electrical noise at the low end of the spectrum.

If you are planning to run an aftermarket amp and head unit just take the low level output directly off the head unit to the amp(s).

If you are sticking with the factory head unit there are options for pulling the low level output before it goes through the factory amp. Probably the best option with the stock head unit as the factory amp is doing the high and low pass filtering and is not adjustable.
 

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someone mentioned the amp drives the rear speakers and the sub( or all speakers) with the sub being connected to the rear speakers or something but I am not sure. Better to do the whole system at once , do it once do it right. Try to not cut any factory wires just use a connection kit.

we have all kinds of electrical noise due to the Hybrid system. It is supposed to be shielded by the extra wires in the rear window to prevent the radio picking it up but there is all kinds of noise in our cars.

I'm changing the head unit soon, the parts are in the mail, so when I do that I'll see if I can get up to the factory amp and check. I didn't ever think of interference between the amps however, so thanks for the heads up on that. How close are we talking? Have people had interference issues putting the sub amp in the glove box? I may end up installing a new amp for the other 6 speakers eventually, but initially I think the sub is outrun by the door speakers. I'd just have to pull the radio out again which I'm not too concerned about.

Edit: I just realized I may have misinterpreted your reply but I'm not sure. To be clear, I do not plan to run one amp into the other. I would be cutting the sub output wires from the factory amp and sending the new amp out those wires. So the factory amp wouldn't have anything to do with the sub anymore.
 

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In that case rip it all out when you swap the radio and use the new amp that is part of the radio or added between the radio and the speakers. Try to use the factory wiring if you can..
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
In that case rip it all out when you swap the radio and use the new amp that is part of the radio or added between the radio and the speakers. Try to use the factory wiring if you can..
The way I plan to wire it up for now is to run the low level outputs from the aftermarket head unit to the factory amp. This is for 2 reasons: 1) I'm estimating that the RMS output of the factory amp and my new head unit will be roughly the same (emphasis on "estimate"), and 2) it's easier to do it this way for now because this is the harness I got Metra 70-1730 Receiver Wiring Harness . This way I won't have to start cutting up the factory wiring from the amp until I decide to get some legit amplifiers.
 

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The way I plan to wire it up for now is to run the low level outputs from the aftermarket head unit to the factory amp. This is for 2 reasons: 1) I'm estimating that the RMS output of the factory amp and my new head unit will be roughly the same (emphasis on "estimate"), and 2) it's easier to do it this way for now because this is the harness I got Metra 70-1730 Receiver Wiring Harness . This way I won't have to start cutting up the factory wiring from the amp until I decide to get some legit amplifiers.
That connector set with the factory amp should be just fine. I am not sure if that connector will bypass the factory amp or not, you may not have to cut anything. At least you have plan and are not planning to use the factory radio. So many try to use the factory radio and then add a second Amp and have something worse than the OEM. you might be able to bypass the amp by making a small harness the replaces the amp connections with straight wire or substitute a better amp if needed. But at this point you have a plan and it should be an improvement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Update on the original thread topic.

I installed my head unit today, everything went well except I didn't get the SWC hooked up right yet. While I was in there I was able to pull the connector that has all the speaker outputs from the factory amp. According to a pinout for a 2016 CR-Z (I have a 2013), the subwoofer wires are red and light blue (although it doesn't really matter because they all look to be the same size). You can see the red wire in the picture I attached, I couldn't find any markings on it but it looked no bigger than 18 gauge, probably smaller. I had 16 gauge wire in my toolbox and it's definitely smaller than 16 gauge.
So I will not be using it for my upgraded sub when I get around to that, I'm just going to run some properly sized wire and not have to worry about burning my car down.
 

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Likely interference is caused when the high level amp outputs are the input to an aftermarket amp with high level input. Any noise from the factory amp and anything the sub wires pick up along the way are then amplified by the aftermarket amp.

At subwoofer frequencies probably not a huge deal. Not much in a car makes electrical noise at the low end of the spectrum.

If you are planning to run an aftermarket amp and head unit just take the low level output directly off the head unit to the amp(s).

If you are sticking with the factory head unit there are options for pulling the low level output before it goes through the factory amp. Probably the best option with the stock head unit as the factory amp is doing the high and low pass filtering and is not adjustable.
Please be aware that your factory subwoofer gets its signal from front to speakers through the factory amp. Your factory head unit is wired directly into your factory amp you will have to rip out your entire interior is all under the dash.
 

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Update on the original thread topic.

I installed my head unit today, everything went well except I didn't get the SWC hooked up right yet. While I was in there I was able to pull the connector that has all the speaker outputs from the factory amp. According to a pinout for a 2016 CR-Z (I have a 2013), the subwoofer wires are red and light blue (although it doesn't really matter because they all look to be the same size). You can see the red wire in the picture I attached, I couldn't find any markings on it but it looked no bigger than 18 gauge, probably smaller. I had 16 gauge wire in my toolbox and it's definitely smaller than 16 gauge.
So I will not be using it for my upgraded sub when I get around to that, I'm just going to run some properly sized wire and not have to worry about burning my car down.
 

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What are you using for the SWC?

My factory subwoofer works good with the Kenwood I bought from crutchfield.com. it is currently discontinued. Kenwood replace it with a better model. I would have preferred an Alpine but I ain't got that kind of money.

I digress, crutchfield indicates not to try for a super load stereo I think it's because it might over work the hybrid battery. I don't want to discourage you. Just repeating the advice given to me by Crutchfield.
I did add a backup camera to my car. While trying to run the wiring for it, I got a good look at the body panels. For you change everything most of the rear panels would need to be removed. The rear speaker bezels cover a few bolts. There are other panels that have to get popped off to find hidden bolts but there's a lot to remove. I ended up running my wiring using a fish tape.
 

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