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AudioControl LC7i

6-channel line output converter with bass restoration — add amps to your factory system (White)

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  • AudioControl LC7i

    Sierra White

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Our take on the AudioControl LC7i

by Buck Pomerantz
AudioControl

This LOC lets you amplify your factory system and restores the bass

Your car's stereo has great features, like steering wheel controls, built-in Bluetooth®, or navigation, but the sound is terrible. AudioControl's LC7i 6-channel line output converter lets you hook up aftermarket amps, speakers, and subs to almost any factory stereo, allowing you to improve the sound without losing any of the factory features. It takes the speaker outputs of your factory radio or amp, converts it to a clean, unified, preamp-level signal, and then sends it along to your amps so you can enjoy some real power and impact in your music.

Why you have to restore the bass

Many factory systems actually turn the bass down as you increase the volume, because the cheap factory speakers can't take it, subsequently removing much of your music's power and punch. AudioControl developed a patent pending AccuBASS™ circuit that restores the bass the factory radio erased, giving you much fuller and more enjoyable sound. The AccuBASS is applied to the subwoofer output channel, so your sub amp can have the entire, restored signal to work with.

What else can it do?

For factory systems that use amplifiers and crossovers for midrange drivers and tweeters, the LC7i features an internal signal summing circuit that puts the full-range sound back together, so you can amplify it properly. For systems without a sub channel, an AutoMode™ feature can create one, so you can add a subwoofer. A signal-sensing circuit turns on the LC7i without needing a remote wire, while a 12-volt remote output turns on your amplifiers. You can even use the optional ACR-1 wired remote bass level control to adjust the subwoofer level from the front seat. The LC7i comes in white or dark gray, giving you more options for your system's look.

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Highlights:

  • 6-channel line output converter (Sierra White)
  • designed to work with any factory stereo
  • 6 speaker-level inputs (each can handle up to 400 watts RMS of power)
  • AccuBASS bass restoration circuitry
  • 6-channel preamp-level outputs
  • AutoMode creates subwoofer channel when needed
  • level matching controls
  • maximum output level: 8.5 volts RMS
  • internal signal summing available when used with factory systems with crossovers
  • optional wired remote subwoofer level control
  • signal-sensing turn on
  • 12-volt 1-amp turn-on lead output
  • recommended fuse: 2-amp
  • dimensions: 7-1/2"W x 1-5/16"H x 6-3/8"D
  • warranty: 5 years
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee

Hands-on research from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Product Research
What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • 6-Channel line output converter
  • Owner's manual
  • QC checklist

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team — they open the box, verify contents, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.

Features

Six Channel Line Output Converter: The AudioControl LC7i is a six channel active line converter which allows you to keep your factory installed source unit in your vehicle and still dramatically improve your car audio system performance. The LC7i accepts up to six channels of speaker-level signal from factory installed amplifiers or a source unit and converts it to a high quality, after market low-noise, pre-amp level signal that can be fed to amplifiers and speakers.

AccuBASS: The LC7i fixes one of the biggest letdowns of today's factory systems, weak bass. Designed for maximum sound quality and enhanced audio performance, the LC7i incorporates AccuBASS. This patent pending process automatically corrects for the bass roll-off that is common with many factory-installed audio systems and AudioControl's unique and exclusive AccuBASS patent pending circuitry maintains and restores the Bass as the volume is turned up, improving the audio performance.

Speaker Input: The speaker level inputs are compatible with nearly any factory stereo system, even most Bose systems. There are 3 pair of inputs that will accommodate up to 400 watts.

Channel Summing: The LC7i has the ability to sum together multiple input channels (4 or 6) from the factory source unit into 2 channels. This is handy when the factory system has multiple, actively crossed-over signals sent from the OEM source unit or amplifier(s). For example, in some vehicles there is an actively crossed-over tweeter, midrange, and woofer all in the front of the vehicle. The LC7i lets you take all of those signals and sum them together to get a high-quality, full-range, pre-amp signal without the use of any additional cables or hardware.

AutoMode Inputs: When there is no signal present at the channel 3 input, the channel 2 input automatically feeds the channel 2 and channel 3 outputs.

Output Level: The +/- 12 dB output level allows you to adjust the head unit's voltage to the top of your amp's input range; up to 8.5 volts RMS. Each of the three pair of  RCA outputs has its own level adjustment.

Auto Turn-on: The main speaker level input has a signal sensing circuit; the unit turns on when there's a speaker level input signal and turns off when the signal disappears.

Ground Isolation: The power supply ground is switchable, in case of ground loop noise. The factory position is fully isolated (typically the best choice), but can be changed to Ground or 200Ω.

Remote Output: The +12 volt DC remote output will trigger an amp to turn on whenever the LC7i is on. The remote's maximum current output is 1 amp.

Terminal Blocks: The power/ground/remote in/remote out terminal and the speaker level input terminals are removable; the wiring is attached to the block, then the block is plugged into the LC7. The terminal blocks will accommodate wire up to 12 gauge.

Optional Remote Control: Using the optional ACR-1 wired remote (161ACR1, sold separately) you can easily adjust the output level of channel 3 of the AudioControl LC7i, often used for a subwoofer. The remote is designed to be dash mounted, within reach of the driver; it can be mounted under the dash with the supplied bracket, or the bracket can be removed and the knob and LED can be custom mounted through the dash

Specifications:

  • Maximum Speaker Level Input: 400 watts (at 4Ω)
  • Maximum Output Voltage: 8.5 volts RMS
  • Frequency response: 10Hz-22kHz
  • THD: 0.01%
  • Input Impedance: 20 kΩ
  • Output Impedance: 150 Ohms
 

Product reviews from the Crutchfield Labs (what are the Labs?)

Quick impressions from the Lab

Comment by Buck Pomerantz Staff Writer - Creative,

Neat little processor

Written by Buck Pomerantz, Staff Writer - Creative, on 8/28/2012 10:31:00 AM

This hand-sized device is of very solid construction. The raised knobs include little extrusions so you can make adjustments by hand as well as by small screwdriver. The controls are very tight, which is good — they won't move under vibrating conditions or when merely touched. There are three output level controls for the three pairs of channels, and two knobs for the AccuBASS restoration, as well as summing and maximized-level indicator LEDs. It looks very simple to operate.

The unit includes a hand-initialed test checklist, attesting to the processor's high quality and the pride of the builders. The entertaining owner's manual informs us that it comes in a "Recyclable cardboard box for easy storage or emergency heating needs." Cute. The instructions are well-written and should be simple to follow.

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AudioControl LC7i Reviews

Average Customer Review:

13 people say:

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5 out of 5

Works great

Written By Dillon, San Antonio on Thursday, August 14, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Used to integrate 4 new speakers into the factory head unit of a 2013 f150. Works great, and the factory sub seems to hit a bit harder now too.
Pros:
Works great
Cons:
I hear professional installation is recommended
Was this review helpful?    Yes | No
 
1 out of 5

Not for heavy metal fans!

Written By KH, Kankakee, IL on Saturday, August 09, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Everything sounded fine until I added a subwoofer. The bass sounds terrible with one added, but fine with midrange speakers because the bass with midranges isn't powerful enough for you to notice how messed up the level is. The bass somehow manages to hit too hard during "thumps" (bass drums, etc.,) and not enough during smoother bass (bass guitars and other smooth-sounding but bassy instruments), resulting in a choppy sound that makes metal, country, and basically anything that isn't rap sound horrible. For reference, I'm using a JL Audio JX 360 to power 4 Focal AC 690 midranges, and a Soundstream T1000 amp for a Soundstream Tarantula 15" sub in a 2012 Camry.
Pros:
The automatic turn-on signal sensor works well. It sounds ok with midrange speakers.
Cons:
Bass is too "punchy" with subs. It hits too hard when it shouldn't be, and not enough when the bass should be louder. Someone else said that it only "hits" rather than giving a "smooth" sound, which is exactly right. Not so bad with rap where there aren't bass guitars playing alongside bass drums, but I am a heavy metal fan, so the sound with this is absolutely terrible. I didn't notice the problem until I hooked up subs, though, so with midrange speakers it might be fine.
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3 out of 5

AudioControl LC7i

Written By Brad, San Diego, CA on Wednesday, June 11, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Overall this thing does exactly as advertised in the end. Right off the bat, it will sound like a dying cat, at least if your are doing it yourself (unless you are an expert on car audio) There are no instructions for tuning this thing. Anybody can hook up wires, but tuning it was a PAIN. The instructions wont help, it's the most funny instructions but the least helpful. That said, it sounded better using my amps gain than the LC7i's. I could not level match it with their way. Lower is better with the LC7i, use your amp's gain to do the rest. I don't know if I needed the bass restoration, I probably could have got the LC6i because it sounded better with it all turned down bass-wise. My 2014 Ram head unit is just fine but needed at least an LOC to make it work with an amp. This thing will sum the channels though and make it sound way better than a plain LOC with your door/dash speakers with an amp. Again, though beware. The instructions suck about tuning this thing. It sounded good after I messed around with the gain and the gain on my amp, if you go with AudioControl's (the manufacture's) videos on their website your system will sound horrible. The instructions are wrote by a wanna-be comedian and will only tell you how to hook it up and set it up (grounding, high pass?, Summing, that's it) and you have to set the jumpers which is not hard. Its good a good buy if you need something like this, but make sure you can get by with the LC6i if you can.
Pros:
Sums the channels ( a must have if you want to amp every speaker on a new truck ) Clearer sound ( makes my stock head unit sound like a top of the line Alpine ) Makes adding a sub to a stock system a breeze ( in theory, i've already ran the wires to it )
Cons:
Bad and seemingly incomplete instructions ( AudioControl wants you to take it to a dealer, not do it yourself) Bad to get this if your think you just want to add some subs ( get this if you want to upgrade everything but and without a new deck those things are overrated anyway )
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Last peice of the puzzle

Written By Anonymous, Arlington, VA on Wednesday, April 09, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I wanted better sound from my factory stereo. First added new speakers which improved sound, next added a 5 channel amp, and sub which improved sound more. Yesterday I added the AudioControl LC7i, and am blown away by the sound improvement. If you want to keep you factory head unit, the Audio Control piece is a no brainer.
Pros:
Blown away by sound improvement at all volume levels
Cons:
Absolutely NONE.
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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3 out of 5

Idont know

Written By Gerar, Puerto Rico on Tuesday, April 08, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Im install after this equipment a cheep equalizer and the sound its better
1 out of 8 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

AudioControl LC7i

Written By Anonymous, Kailua, Hawaii on Sunday, February 16, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Nice product
Pros:
Easy to use
1 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Audiocontrol LC7I

Written By Doug, Maryville, TN on Saturday, January 18, 2014
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
If you want to keep an OEM head unit and add a couple of amps this will do the trick. This corrects the loss of bass at higher volumes that factory radios create and gives you 3 sets of RCA outs each with their own gain control. Highly reccomended.
Pros:
Improved bass with OEM integration
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Critical if you want to retain the factory head unit, and want to upgr

Written By Anonymous, Poughkeepsie, NY on Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Typical AudioControl quality and performance ... this unit amazes me with lots of functional options and features. I added the ACR-1 to give some added control of the subwoofer, which was the icing on this installation. The AccuBass function allowed me to fine-tune the bass performance, as I did not have a crossover adjustment on my system. GTO was essential as my factory head unit did not provide a remote turn-on function.
Pros:
Installation flexibility options. Many control features.
Cons:
none
1 out of 1 people found this helpful
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3 out of 5

Right item, wrong setup

Written By Audio control LC7, NYC, NY on Tuesday, December 17, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
I was seeking a certain spect that this item did not perform
Pros:
A great price, of course, but not the product i was seeking
Cons:
none
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5 out of 5

Excellent Product!

Written By Mike K., Plainfield, Illinois on Monday, November 11, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
After doing extensive research about replacing my sound system in my 2010 Ford F-150 FX4 I started changing out 1 part at a time. I knew i wanted to keep my stock head unit because i did not want to mess with the look and SYNC system. The original speakers were the worst i have ever heard and i knew i had to change them pronto! I replaced the fronts with Alpine SPR 60 C Components and the back with Alpine SPR 60 Coax speakers. I powered these with a Alpine PDX F-4 Amp. I then added a Kicker Hideaway powered sub which i knew would be perfect as i had limited room in the back of my supercab. To get a cleaner sound and to add some bass to the front speakers i dicided on the AudioControl LC7i. I had everything professionally installed and let me tell you the system rocks so hard and sounds so good i cannot believe the sound! The audio guy that installed the set up said the AudioControl made a huge difference in the bass from what i was getting before. I almost do not even need a sub but that would be almost... I did not need the remote for the AudioControl because i already had one for the Kicker Sub but i would suggest getting it if you do not have a fast subwoofer control without digging through your head unit. Overall i am very satisfied with the AudioControl and recommend the product to anyone looking to add to your OEM head unit!
Pros:
Does what it is supposed to do!
Cons:
None so far!
6 out of 6 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Very nice

Written By Wrench S, Cleveland OH on Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
The LC7I is great. It really brought my stock head unit to life
1 out of 5 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great!

Written By Gyakusetsu, Denver, CO on Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
Does exactly what they say it does: restores bass curves and converts to line out for use with a separate amp plus creates a line out for a subwoofer.

setup is very easy and the factory settings are what most people would use, so there is almost no need to open the cover to change the dip switches.

I definitely recommend this for anyone that wants to keep their factory head unit and make it sound like a premium system. the signal sensing turn on is fantastic and snappy, plus allows you to get a turn on line for all your components without tapping into something convoluted in the vehicle.

overall very satisfied!
Pros:
signal sensing, well constructed, easy setup, great quality.
Cons:
price
2 out of 2 people found this helpful
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5 out of 5

Great product

Written By Jason, Columbus Ohio on Friday, February 08, 2013
Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)
 
What can I say. It's doing what it is designed to do. Easy to install if you have the ability. Will purchase again for my next vehicle.
Pros:
Provides noiseless signal. Easy to install. Durable structure.
Cons:
Doesn't come in solid black.
1 out of 3 people found this helpful
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2 questions already asked

What size wire should I use for the power and ground? [ Nic  Apr 11, 2014 ]
1 answer
  • I forwarded your question to an Advisor and they responded with the following: The terminal blocks will accommodate wire up to 12 gauge, but this device uses very little power, and you could also use just speaker wire as well. If you would like to discuss further you can contact an Advisor directly by phone (1-800-324-9695) or online chat. [ Krissy Staff  Apr 13, 2014 ]
Do you connect the lc7i before or after the factory amplifier? [ Kelly  Jun 15, 2014 ]
1 answer
  • If you purchased the product from Crutchfield, feel free to contact our Tech Support team. They can walk you through the install. Our toll-free Tech Support number is printed on your invoice, and is also available under the "My Orders" tab in the "My Account" section of our website. If you did not purchase the unit from Crutchfield, then you may want to contact the manufacturer. You can also post your question in our forums: http://community.crutchfield.com. Or try our online support center: http://crutchfield.custhelp.com/app/answers/list/kw/. [ Krissy Staff  Jun 15, 2014 ]

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