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How to connect an amplifier to a factory stereo

Tips for using your car's factory wiring

Factory stereo speaker wires

Adding an amplifier to a factory stereo often requires running a lot of new speaker wire — from the stereo to the amplifier and then from the amp to the speakers. This can feel like an impossible nightmare. Fortunately, we have a way to make it a little easier. 

This article explains how to connect an amplifier to a factory stereo. If you have an aftermarket stereo, you'll use a set of RCA cables instead of one of the 9-wire cables below. Refer to our article about adding an amp to an aftermarket stereo for more details. 

EFX 9-wire speaker cable

Multi-conductor cable to the rescue

Usually, you'll be installing a 4-channel amplifier with speaker-level inputs. The best way to connect it to a factory system is to tap into the stereo's speaker outputs for the amp's input signal. Then send the amp's outputs back to the stereo's harness, and on to the speakers through the factory wiring.

"All-in-one" 9-wire speaker cable from EFX makes this easier by including the wiring for four speakers and an amp turn-on lead all in one cable. Run two of these cables from the dash to your new amplifier. You'll need one for the amp's input and the other for its output. These cables will act like a "T-harness" to connect your amp to the factory system.

Remove the radio to get to the factory wiring

Behind the factory radio, you can access all of the speaker wires in one place. The radio's wiring harness delivers power to the radio and sends its output to the speakers. You'll need to identify which wire goes to which speaker. Positive leads are usually solid-colored wires, while their accompanying negative leads tend to be the same color with a stripe of a second color.

Please be aware that these wiring colors vary widely from one car to the next. If you purchase your new gear from Crutchfield, our Tech Support team can look up the wire colors for you. Give us a call before you tear apart your dash, so you'll know what to expect.

Connect the wires

Once you've identified each of the eight speaker wires, cut each one. Connect the end coming from the radio plug to a new wire going to the amp's input. Connect the end going to the speakers to the appropriate wire coming from the amp's output.

That means you'll use two of the 9-wire cables, one for the amp's input, the other for its output.  

Amp wiring with 9-wire cable

Amplifier in/out via 9-conductor cables go to the right, radio plugs in at top, and vehicle wiring goes left. (Even with my challenged eyesight and shaky hands it only took me about 40 minutes to wire this harness for illustration.)

Forget the turn-on lead

Amplifiers that have speaker-level inputs also feature "signal-sensing turn-on." The amp turns on when an input signal is present. This means you don't use the ninth wire (the blue wire) of either cable for this installation.

Expert installation tip

Before you run these two 9-wire cables through your car, mark both ends of one cable with a piece of electrical tape. That way, once the cables are in place, you'll know which of those cables is for the amp inputs and which is for the amp outputs.

Some products to help you do it

Crutchfield offers a 12-foot and a 20-foot version of EFX's 9-wire cable, to accommodate different sized vehicles. We also carry a small selection of highly conductive, pure copper speaker wire, available by the foot. You can use that for connecting your amplifier to a factory system instead of the 9-wire cable, if you want. We really like the EFX cable because it's such an elegant and easy option because each set of speaker wires is color coded. 

A multi-pack of Posi-Products Car Stereo Connectors could come in handy here. You can make all the speaker connections without having to solder or crimp anything. One package will cover this job and give you a few spares.

High power amps need bigger wires

For amps with more than 75 watts RMS of output per channel, it might be better to go ahead and run new 14- or 16-gauge speaker wires directly from the amplifier to each speaker.

Factory speaker wires are very thin, with high electrical resistance. They can cause noticeable power loss when higher wattages try to get through. But amplifiers of 75-watts or less aren't really affected by this. Running their output through factory wiring remains a practical and convenient solution.

Line output converters

Another popular way to connect an amplifier to a factory radio is to use something called a line output converter. It connects to the factory radio's speaker wires and converts the speaker-level signal to a preamp-level signal. This lets you use RCA cables to run that signal to your amplifier. 

AudioControl LC6iB line output converter

A line output converter offers some advantages, like the ability to sum and control signals of a multi-channel factory system. So if you're upgrading a complex system, using a line output converter might be your best option.  The speaker wire solution we've shared here is a simpler, less-expensive alternative that will work for most people. Read more about line output converters. 

Let us know what you need

This article focused on a way to simplify the speaker connections. For information about other aspects of amplifier installation, like power and ground wiring, check out our Amplifier Installation Guide.

If you have any questions about connecting a new amplifier to your speakers, contact our advisors via chat or phone. They'll take the time to answer your questions and explain the details, then get you set up with whatever you need.

  • Leo macias from Dallas

    Posted on 12/30/2020

    I am going to replace all 7 of my honda pilot2015 speakers with name brand. But i want to power the 8"sub in the back with an amp and still run my doors speakers with the factory radio. What do i need to connect the amp correctly?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/3/2021

    Leo, Use a line output converter or get a subwoofer amplifier with speaker-level inputs, and then use tap connectors to get signal to the amp. Give us a call and an Advisor can help you get all the gear you'll need for your sub amp install.
  • Andrew Reeve from Ennis

    Posted on 12/22/2020

    I have a 2015 Silverado without the Bose system. I was wondering if I could use an old KX400.4 amp to power my speakers on the factory head unit. Sky help would be appreciated

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/22/2020

    Andrew, Yes. That amp features speaker-level inputs that'll connect into the factory system just as this article shows.
  • Chris from Perth w.a

    Posted on 11/29/2020

    Trying to upgrade on the cheap . Single dad two kids . Standard stereo in BA xr6 but bought a factory amp and I've changed speakers already. How do I set it all up and do you have kit s and even recommend going that way

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/6/2020

    Chris, I sounds like your best move is to go to a car audio dealership and have them install your amp and wiring. Check out our Car amp installation guide for DIY guidance.
  • Terel from Cleveland

    Posted on 11/15/2020

    Hi, I have a 2009 Chevy Malibu LTZ V6. Few months ago, my sound went out. I've replaced 2 fuses, as well as pulling an amp out of a junkyard (it appeared damaged, so that may be the issue), disconnected my battery, and I've still got no sound. By no sound, I mean no door chime, radio, phone call, turn signal, seat belt warning, nothing. A mechanic told me it /might/ be the amplifier (he didn't look at it). I'm feeling really frustrated, because I drive everyday and I NEED my music to focus. Any thoughts or suggestions?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/16/2020

    Terel, I think you need to take your car to a car audio installer for a proper diagnosis and repair.
  • Antoine from NEW ORLEANS

    Posted on 10/24/2020

    Hi Mr. Buck Pomerantz , hope all is well, An amplifier such as the Alpine S-A55V has RCA inputs that can be switched from low level to high level inputs vice versa. If I already have RCA cables, can I cut the tips off of one end of the RCA's and tap the bare wires into the stereo's speaker outputs, and connect the other end with the RCA plugs to the RCA inputs switched to high level on the amplifier? Thanks Antoine

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/26/2020

    Antoine, You can DIY adapters as you describe, or buy ready-made speaker wire to RCA adapters.
  • Bruce

    Posted on 10/18/2020

    I have a 2013 civic, keeping the head unit. I have the sound ordnance B-8P powered sub that I'm planning to connect the remote wire to the fuse box ( with a fuse tap). Now I'm looking to buy the Kenwood KAC-M3004, 4 channel amp for my front and rear speakers and connecting them with the EFX 9 wires cable the same way you explained in your post. Will this setup work? Do I need 1 or 2 EFX 9 wires cable? Thanks!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/19/2020

    Bruce, If you want to connect an amp like this article shows, you'll use two of the 9-wire cables, one for the amp's input, the other for its output.
  • Anthony from Marietta

    Posted on 10/18/2020

    So my intention is to add an amp to my factory speakers being mindful of the 75w restaurant per channel. My concern is locating and cutting the wires from my stock head unit. Is there an adapter harness or extension I can buy? Like I unplug from factory radio the existing wires from vehicle, then the harness extension plugs into factory radio while receiving the plug in from the car harness while leaving a one to one wire connection with that length of wire to work with?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/19/2020

    Anthony, The only way I know about such an adapter is to make one yourself.
  • Gregory Duranko from San Bernardino

    Posted on 10/12/2020

    This has to rewritten. Why would you entitle the article adding a amplifier to a factory radio and then in the second paragraph, introduce an aftermarket radio???

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/13/2020

    Gregory, That sentence, which begins with the word "if," and the next one are meant to redirect anyone with an aftermarket receiver to another article - otherwise read on for information about connecting to a factory radio.
  • Irving Solis from Laredo

    Posted on 9/29/2020

    Hi Buck, How Can I connect 2 Amplifiers (4 Speakers and 1 Subwoofer) in a factory Radio without loss the original balance of stereo. Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/29/2020

    Irving, If the factory radio is left intact, the balance and fade controls are there as well.
  • russ hogan from oklahoma city

    Posted on 9/24/2020

    do i need to use a power block to give the dq-61 a constant 12v hot or run a seperate constant hot alongside the amp 4gage power to the battery? 2013 Ford F-1250 OEM Sony Headunit with Nav retaining Sony amp/dsp, Focal components front and rear, Focal sub, DQ-61 for summing and providing a clean line to a 5 channel Infinity amp.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/25/2020

    Russ, You can use a distribution block or run a new wire to the battery, whichever is more convenient for you.
  • Ron from Cut Bank

    Posted on 9/19/2020

    Can this be done by only splicing into the 2 rear speaker speaker-wires instead of all the speakers in the vehicle? For instance in my 2006 dodge Dakota I'd like to splice into the 2 rear speakers Somewhere And have my 20 inch woffer And amp sit in the back seat. Factory stereo I should add. Is this possible?

  • Mx432nz

    Posted on 9/16/2020

    Hi Buck. Can i hook an amp up to my existing stereo in my 1998 Ford Explorer? Thank you.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/17/2020

    Mx, Probably, although there are about five different kinds of factory radios with that vehicle, so you never know.
  • Joshua Fisher from Medford

    Posted on 9/7/2020

    I have a 2012 genesis coupe with a infinity system with a stock subwoofer included, I'm looking to replace the existing subwoofer with an aftermarket amp/subwoofer combo and I'm not sure how to tap in correctly, I know traditionally I would use an LOC on one the rear speaker leads to convert to an RCA but I'm wondering if I can instead tap into the existing leads for the current subwoofer .

  • Ross from OKC

    Posted on 8/23/2020

    How do you do this t connection/ splice if you have 7 stock speakers abut only have a four -channel amp and can only connect 4 of the 7 speakers to the amp?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/24/2020

    Ross, You can power up to four speakers with a 4-channel amp. If you want to power more speakers, you'll need another amp.
  • Kevin Rogers from Putnam

    Posted on 8/3/2020

    I need help. First time installer. My car is a 16' Ford Fusion with LCD. My amp is a JL Audio 500/1 think it might be an older model. Im handy but not familiar this kind of work.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/3/2020

    Kevin, Check out our Car amplifier installation guide for some help.
  • Bill lamber from Corry

    Posted on 8/2/2020

    I'm thinking about having a 300 watt rockford fosgate amp an 2 10s installed in my Mitsubishi Outlander will the factory deck be ok an have enough for the system an sound good because I dont wanna change it or get a different one cuz of the screen for my back up camera

  • Arrien from Brooklyn

    Posted on 7/26/2020

    Everyone I've asked in the Crutchfield chat has recommended using 16 gauge wire for anything over 40ish watts RMS. Are you certain that 75 watts can pass through what amounts to about 25/30ft (between the 12ft 9-wire and factor runs) without causing noticeable issues?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/3/2020

    Arrien, That amount of power through that size wire will not present any issues.
  • Renaldo from Atlanta

    Posted on 7/23/2020

    Hello Buck! I have a 2018 VW Tiguan and I have already replaced the front and rear factory speakers with components (Infinity Reference REF-6530cx). I would like to add my alpine MRV-F300 amp to the system. I have installed 8-9 sub amps, but never a 4 channel. I would use the LOC for the input side of the amp, then tap into the factory wiring with the 9 wire harness for the output to my speakers from my amp, correct?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/28/2020

    Renaldo, That amplifier has speaker-level inputs, so there's no need for an LOC. Otherwise I think you have it figured out.
  • Shane from Sudbury

    Posted on 7/11/2020

    I would like to put a Rockford Fosgate p300-12 into a 10th gen civic with stock head unit (7" touch screen). Would I need an loc? If not, what would be a recommended wire kit, and best tapping method? Rear deck or behind the head unit into the front speakers?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/13/2020

    Shane, That powered subwoofer has high-level inputs, so you won't need an LOC. For getting signal for a sub amp, the rear deck speaker wiring will work well.
  • Phil Appleton from Charlottesville

    Posted on 7/5/2020

    Hi Buck, I'm trying to add an amplifier to my Nissan GTR 2017. The factory Bose amp receives a full range signal from the head unit and the equalises it on the amplified output speaker side. The problem I have is the volume control is done via CANBus and therefore if I tap off the nice full range signal it leaves me with no volume control. I can see PAC have started to make such an interface however they don't make one for my car. Is there anyway I can interface with this CANBus volume control to avoid using summing boxes? I already have my Amps and a BitTen so something that would let me control the volume if it available would be a 2 channel line level amplifier CANBus controlled? I need 6 input channels to get a full range and hence why I cant do this with the BitTen if you are wondering. Just to clarify, from the head unit is a stereo full range signal and CANBus volume control. Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/6/2020

    Phil, In this situation, you'd get an amplifier that can take amplified, high-level inputs, like AudioControl's D-6.1200 with built-in DSP so you won't need the Bit Ten.
  • Peter from New York

    Posted on 7/4/2020

    Hi, got a question. I have a 2011 Ford F-150 standard factory stereo 4 speakers no subwoofer. I want to add a amplifier to the existing system like you described in the first example with the 2 9 wires. That will take care of the 4 speakers. But I would like to also add 2 subwoofers can I just get a 5 channel amp instead of a 4 channel amp will it connect the same way as the 4 channel amp or is there something else I have to do? Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/6/2020

    Peter, You wire in a 5-channel amp the same way you would a 4-channel amp. The sub channel's input signal will be accessible by switch, and you'll need to run a new speaker wire to the sub.
  • Greg Williams from new york

    Posted on 6/30/2020

    I bypassed my factory bose amp with 9 wire to my aftermarket stereo using the factory amp harness to the speakers. I have continuity in 3 of the 4 speakers but none from the front right speaker at harness or speaker connector. HELP PLEASE

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/1/2020

    Greg, Check the speaker itself - maybe it's blown or has a loose connection. If you bought any of your gear from Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number is on your invoice. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Click on this link for details.
  • Scott Landry from Baytown

    Posted on 6/16/2020

    Brain stumped. I currently have an Rd500/1 installed to my factory head unit. I am about to pull it out and replace it with the 900/5. Im stumped on how to get it wired to be able yo receive signal for each channel.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/19/2020

    Scott, That amplifier has an input selection switch to choose between 2-channel, 4-channel, or 6-channel input.
  • Patrick from Uniontown

    Posted on 6/11/2020

    I am looking to add a Bazooka powered sub in a 2014 Focus SE without Sony. Would the 9 wire work to pick up signal and line voltage in addition to a 8 gauge power and ground?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/12/2020

    Patrick, If your powered sub has speaker-level inputs, that'll work just fine.
  • Jesse Manley from Goldsboro

    Posted on 5/27/2020

    How can I run a 1500 boss amp to my factory radio system

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/29/2020

    Jesse, Give us a call and an Advisor can help you get all the gear and connectivity you'll need to get great sound.
  • Garrett

    Posted on 5/20/2020

    I am trying to add an amp and 2 8 inch subs to my 2015 Altima SL. Is there a way I can run the new amp without taking out the existing factory one?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/20/2020

    Garrett, Scroll down to the second diagram in this article . If your vehicle's factory amplifier is stronger than 25 watts RMS per channel, you'd use a line output converter (LOC) for the sub amp's input connections.
  • Xavier from North east

    Posted on 5/16/2020

    I can't find any diagrams for a remote turn on and remote ground in my 2009 Honda Civic

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/19/2020

    Xavier, Toward the bottom of this article is diagram showing remote turn-on and ground wiring.
  • Jack from Annapolis

    Posted on 4/30/2020

    I am wiring 2 sets of component speakers and a single 10 sub to a factory VW system, this will require me to run new speaker wire for all my door speakers, my question here is, the wires that tap in to the factory harness to run to my line out converter, should this wire be tapped in ( with something like a t tap or crimp connector) or should the original wire be removed and repinned for the aftermarket wire

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/4/2020

    Jack, If you run new speaker wires, you'll need to disconnect the factory wires, either at the harness where you get the signals, or at the speakers themselves.
  • Mike

    Posted on 4/12/2020

    If I plug into the rca outputs for an amp to run 2 new speakers will the factory speakers still run from the head unit?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/13/2020

    Mike, They'll still play if you don't disconnect them.
  • Brad Y.

    Posted on 4/6/2020

    Of course it varies by vehicle, but the only part I'm not sure of is how to get the speaker wire That's running down the side of the car to behind the head unit. Is there a gap behind the glove box? I have a 2018 Camaro coupe.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/13/2020

    Brad, You could get Crutchfield Vehicle-specific Instructions for your vehicle.
  • P

    Posted on 1/25/2020

    The only issue I have is the return wires from the amp. So if my car has an amp and I wire the out put wires back to the harness that I cut in half going to the speakers, but what if those wires run through my factory amp then to the speakers, wouldn't that defeat the purpose of the aftermarket amp? This is for a 2016 honda pilot. Thank you.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/28/2020

    P, The wiring technique described in this article only works in a factory system that does not have a factory amplifier.
  • pronoy roy from Lucknow

    Posted on 1/6/2020

    How to sync a car amp to my samsung 5.1 850w rms hometheater . Im using 4 channel jbl amp 1500 watts sub and done with all connection at home. While playing with my phone via 3.5mm and cant sync with beats of amp. Y

  • Brian from Jacksonville

    Posted on 12/29/2019

    Does it matter how many watts go to a line output converter? I believe that my jeep factory system has a stock amp hooked up to all the speakers. The wires i plan to use come from the back. 2 ohm set from the factory sub. Going to use that input to the converter and add a mono sub. Thanks Brian

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/31/2019

    Brian, Line output converts do have limits on how much input they can handle - you'll find out how much in the specs. For instance, the popular Scosche SLC4 4-channel line output converter can handle 50 watts RMS per channel.
  • Robert Aviles from Maricopa

    Posted on 12/6/2019

    I'm wanting to use my factory head unit with a 4 channel amp. I upgraded my door speakers and I'm installing 2 10" subs. Using the wire harness, would the factory speaker hookups be a problem? I kept the factory speaker frame because of the hookups.


    Posted on 11/27/2019

    hello i have a simple car audio... a normal alpine radio with 4 rca out and 4 traditional analog out wires. a 4 channel amp. my configuration now is 4 rca out from my alpine radio to 4 channel amp with 4 speakers. can i plug anouther 4 speakers/twiters directly to the analog speaker audio wires to the radio and have 8 speakers in the car? thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/30/2019

    Sergio, If you've run new speaker wires from your amp to the speakers, and disconnected the factory wiring from those speakers, you can then use the factory speaker wiring to drive more speakers.
  • izzy from salinas, Ca

    Posted on 11/14/2019

    hello, I am looking to connect a subwoofer system to my vehicle, but I want to use the factory radio. what device would I need for that? thank you.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/15/2019

    Izzy, Check out this article and scroll down to the section titled "how to add a subwoofer to a factory stereo." You use a line output converter (LOC), or an amp with speaker-level inputs, to get signal from the factory wiring.
  • Melissa A Perez from Colorado Springs

    Posted on 9/16/2019

    Hello so o had someone install a amp and subwoofer to my stock Bose system in my 2008 Cadillac cts4 it was working fine then the audio went out but the subwoofer and amp were still on because you can hear the sub going to the beat of the music but there's no sound can you help please

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/16/2019

    Melissa, If that "someone" is an car audio installer, you should take your vehicle back to them for repair. Even if they're not professional installers, you should still try to get them to fix your system. If you bought your sub and amp from Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number is on your invoice. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Click on this link for details.
  • Keoni from Las Vegas

    Posted on 9/4/2019

    Hi Buck Great article! Because of your article I am feeling confident now on installing an amp to help improve the sound quality on my 2018 Honda Crv touring. I am still using the factory head unit and vehicle comes stock with a component set up with woofers in the door and a tweeter in the upper panel on both front and rear doors, needless to say but the factory set up sucks! It provides a flat sound that doesn't provide any real depth or clarity to my music. I purchased some JBL 6520's for the front and rear doors, I installed them and even though they sound good I think because of the coaxial design and not changing out the factory tweeters the sound imaging is not right. The sound is a little too sharp, with little mids and base. I decided to change it out to some Rockford Fosgate R1675-S for both the front and back door and I will be installing them this weekend, but now I really want to add an amp before I install the speakers to make sure I get the best possible sound quality. What amp would you recommend for my vehicle and speakers?

  • Adam Legros from Boulder Creek

    Posted on 7/24/2019

    Hello. I want to install MTX TNP212D2 Bass Package in my 2019 Versa, but want to retain the factory head unit because of the back up camera and steering controls. Is this something that they 9 wire can do?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/25/2019

    Adam, Those 9-wire cables are made for carrying the signals for four speaker channels and the remote turn-on for an amp. You can certainly use one for your installation, using five of the nine conductors.
  • justin from Houston,Tx

    Posted on 7/13/2019

    I have a Massive Gtx 15 wired to a planet audio pulse pl1500.1m My rRCA cablesare ran from an in line converter from my factory head unit to my amp but for some reason with both RCA cables plugged to my amp it doesnt push much bass but withonly one RCA connected (Doesnt matter which side) it works correctly.mThis bugs the life out of me. Please help

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/15/2019

    Justin, What's happening is that one of those channels is out of phase with the other and when you combine them they try to cancel each other out. Reversing the speaker wire connections of one channel of the line output converter should fix the problem.
  • Daniel from London

    Posted on 7/10/2019

    Hello i am thinking of purchasing the vibe audio powerbox amplifier, the amp states it has high level input, however is seems to have pin connectors, will i be able to connect to the high level input with rca cables? Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/12/2019

    Daniel, I'm unfamiliar with that amp, which isn't sold in the US. But there are some amps that use their RCA inputs for high-level inputs using RCA to speaker wire adapters. There will probably be a switch for high or low level input.
  • fareed

    Posted on 7/10/2019

    Hi, i have an aftermarket head unit that comes with only 2 audio output rca aside the speaker high level output. if i were to connect it to a 5/6 channel amplifier, how can i configure it with the 2 rca output from head unit.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/11/2019

    Fareed, Most multi-channel amplifiers have input switches that let you feed all channels from the two inputs.
  • Max from Germantown

    Posted on 7/9/2019

    Hi Buck I just installed a LOC in order to use my factory stereo with my amp/subs, and am having an issue with the amp going into protect mode. Would improperly wiring the LOC cause this? I'm not sure what else it could be, power at the amp terminals reads 12.8v and the amp worked randomly for an hour after just connecting and removing the remote wire about 50 times it randomly stayed green and the subs sounded great. It will produce sound for a second then protect. Any help is greatly appreciated

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/9/2019

    Max, Usually, an amplifier goes into protection mode when it's wired incorrectly and it's trying to drive a load that's too low. And connecting and disconnecting the remote turn-on wire surely didn't help. Not knowing exactly what amplifier or subwoofers you have make it impossible to give advice about them, though. If you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number is on your invoice. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Click on this link for details.
  • Cody from SPOKANE

    Posted on 6/3/2019

    Hi, I am planning on hooking up my Alpine MRV-M500 amp to hook up my sub to my stock stereo. My amp has speaker level inputs and I was wondering if I need to hook that up to two speakers to work or can I just run it off one.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/4/2019

    Cody, Your sub amp will get a better input signal using two speaker wire connections.
  • Quintin negrete from Paterson

    Posted on 5/23/2019

    Hi there, I have a Nissan Murano 2014 and it has a boss system on it. I would like to install a subwoofer box but I'm not sure where to get the signal input for the amp? Should I get it straight from the factory radio or tap into the factory sub wires ?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/24/2019

    Quintin, When you use the factory subwoofer wiring for your sub's input signal, don't forget to use a line output converter (LOC) to reduce the signal strength of the factory amplified signal down to the level your sub's input can handle.
  • Wayne from Port Elizabeth

    Posted on 3/27/2019

    Hi Buck. Thank you for ypur quick response. I recently asked a question about using speaker level inputs on my Boston GTA 704 amp to power my factory speakers while still having control over balance and fader as well as subwoofer on the head unit. I have the JVC kd-x320bt at the moment that has the 4 output RCAs ( front & rear/sub). I have my sub connected on the rear/sub at the moment. Using rca splitters would decrease the voltage going to the amp. Is there no other way to do get this to work without replacing the head unit?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/27/2019

    Wayne, Sometimes you just have to bite the bullet and use Y-cords. At the low levels inputs signals run, any voltage loss due to a split will be negligible
  • Wayne from Port Elizabeth

    Posted on 3/22/2019

    Hi Buck. I recently purchased a Boston GTA 704 4channel amp and want to run it along with my Pioneer GM-D9601. Both amps have speaker level inputs . My head unit only has 2 pairs of RCA outs. ( Front & Rear/Sub) I want to retain balance and fader while still having subwoofer control on the unit too. What would be the best way to connect everything with minimal sound quality loss? Thank you in advance

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/23/2019

    Wayne, I don't think you'll be able to retain both fader and subwoofer control with that receiver. There may be a workaround, but I don't know what receiver you have or if the rear speaker-level outputs stay live when the rear RCAs are switched to sub outputs.
  • Karl Eric Gonzales from FREMONT

    Posted on 3/17/2019

    Greatwrite up! How do you deal with the newer CAN-BUS audio systems. I have a 2014 Jeep Wrangler with the UConnect 830N with the Alpine audio system. I am tapped into the speaker outs after the amp, and connected to an AudioControl DQ-61. Sometimes, the music cuts out when I turn on the car. I've tried different resistors to simulate a load, but to no avail.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/17/2019

    Karl, In certain situations, an amplifier replacement interface and vehicle-specific T-harness are necessary in order to retain all the system's features while upgrading with a new processor and amp. I don't know what's wrong with your setup. If you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number is on your invoice. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Click on this link for details.
  • Jason from Clarington

    Posted on 3/15/2019

    Had a MTX 5 channel which I got thru you all. I had it installed and we can't figure out what is going on. He used a 4 channel line converter for the stock 2017 Hyundai tuscon radio. I also.have the 12 inch Infinity sub again bought they Crutchfield. It will fad to the rear but will NOT go to the right side speakers when level is all the way left. However, as soon as you put the fader smack dab in the MIDDLE position all speakers will play BUT the right side is slightly lower volume then the left. He says it's due to the factory radio but I am not buying this. I love my Music to be perfect and this is bugging me so much. Thanks for any suggestions.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/17/2019

    Jason, If you bought your gear at Crutchfield, you can call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number is on your invoice.
  • Brooke from Spring city

    Posted on 1/28/2019

    Hi am am trying to install a amp into a 2003 Honda Accord and I'm not sure if there is a place for RCA wire and a remote wire would you no anything about that

  • Brandon Stumpf from Baltimore

    Posted on 1/14/2019

    Hi Buck, I am preparing to install a kicker KXA800.5 into my 2018 ford f-150. I plan to run two 9-wire cables to connect the 4 speakers in the doors. Questions - I assume I need to purchase speaker wire to RCA input converters for the amp inputs? Such as the kicker KISL. Also, for the subwoofer channel, where should I pull this input from? Should I simply splice one of the speaker inputs? Thanks, Brandon

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/14/2019

    Brandon, That amp has a button on the back that lets the sub channel get its signal from the RCA inputs or from Amp 2, no need for splicing or Y-cords. Kicker stopped offering their KISL adapter, but we offer these adapters instead.
  • Deitrich from Dallas

    Posted on 12/18/2018

    Hey- I have a 2013 f150 with Sony premium system. I want to replace 4 door speakers with better speakers, and add an amp in front of them. I also want to add 1-2 10" sub(s) to my setup in place of the factory Sony sub. Can you point me in the right direction of what I would need to get this done? I'm looking at Kappa door speakers and possibly kicker shallowmount subs.

  • Damian from Calgary

    Posted on 11/26/2018

    Hi Buck. 2010 Mazda 3 w/ 6 speaker non Bose. Upgrading by adding new Component (~75 RMS) and tweeter set to front and new 8" sub (~ 250 RMS) in trunk. Leave or remove factory rear speakers for now. Looking at Speaker Level connection to OEM head unit to 4 channel amp. 2 channels for front and bridge 2 for sub. QUESTIONS: Can i still somehow wire in my rear speakers Without the amp? Which line do i run in for the amp signal? At 75 RMS, im on the cusp of the 18 gauge EFX 9 wire suggestion. Is it worth the cost and effort to go thicker? Thanks a ton for your time and input. Cheers.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/27/2018

    Damian, You can leave your rear speakers hooked up to the receiver's speaker outputs. Use the front speaker wires, front left and front right, for your amp's inputs and outputs. The 18-gauge 9-conductor cable will work just fine.
  • Sam Raj from Jacksonville Florida

    Posted on 11/24/2018

    I have 2017 honda accord lx. It has only four speakers. I would like to upgrade them, please suggest brands. Secondly, what can i do to add a small amp to stock head unit. I just want a little bass and clear sounds. If i dont choose an amp, could you point me to a great 2way or 3way for my accord. I have been lurking your website for months to upgrade my stock system and you provide DIY instructions perfectly. Thank you in advance.

  • Sebastian from Compton

    Posted on 11/21/2018

    Hi, I recently installed a 4 channel JBL GX-A604 amp into my 2018 honda accord, also I upgraded the factory speakers with 4 JBL cs763 3 way speaker. The amp has high level input plugs built in. I didn't want to cut any wires so I ran 16gage speakers wires from the speaker to the amp input back from the amp output to the speaker. Everything works just perfect, but the only problem is when I turn on the car I can hear a high frequency noise that increases with the RPMs of the car. any ideas how to fix this problem? Thanks a lot

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/23/2018

    Sebastian, The noise you describe is usually caused by a loose or bad ground or power connection. Tighten and secure all connections. Make sure the ground connection is metal-to-metal with any interfering paint scraped off.
  • Ciprian from Bucharest

    Posted on 10/30/2018

    Hi there. Can you please help me with an example of an amplifier that can support 4channel input and 4 channel output in terms of wires? Most amplifiers have rca inputs. Thank you. Also, do you have a European distributor for your parts? Thank you !

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/31/2018

    Ciprian, Check out this Pioneer GM-A4704. If you look closely, some of the photos show the speaker-level input harness connections, where you use an included harness attached to speaker wires coming from the radio's output. Many other amps feature similar connections. I don't know what products are available in your country (Crutchfield is only licensed to sell gear in the United States and Canada) but a web search for car audio in your city should come up with a few possibilities.
  • James Carr from Lexington

    Posted on 10/19/2018

    2005 Chevy Suburban with Boise system and amplifier trying to run a line out converter for RCA what wires are my speaker wires for the front I mean for the back and where do I run my remote wire to what wire on the back of the factory day

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/23/2018

    James, It looks like the best location to get full-range speaker-level signals for your line output converter's inputs are the rear door speakers. A great way to get a remote turn-on signal is to use an Add A Fuse connector plus a 2A to 10A fuse in your vehicle's fuse box attached to a 12-volt circuit that is only on when the vehicle is on.
  • Eric from Houston

    Posted on 8/9/2018

    Plan on using the 9-wire EfX to install/connect an Audio control LC4-800 to stock deck in 2017 F250 without Sony premium. No wiring harness available yet. Will that EFX wiring support the 125 RMS from the LC? Or should I go with something bigger?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/13/2018

    Eric, That 18-gauge wire will work well for the amp's input connections, but may restrict that much output power. It'll work, but you'll get better results running larger, 16- or 14-gauge, wire from your amp to each speaker.
  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/1/2018

    Manoj, I don't know what kinds of wiring and connectors are available in your country. It sounds like you should visit a car audio dealership and hire them to install your amp and sub.

  • Manoj Kumar from Riyadh

    Posted on 5/30/2018

    Dear Support, I have booked a Honda Amaze car in India which comes with all in one head unit(builtin navigation, radio,reverse parking camera view Etc.) So that I don't wanted to replace head unit. I have an 'Alpine MRV-F300 4-channel Amp and a Alpine PWE-V80 (Under seat Sub). Please let me know what are the accessories I have to buy for connecting these two amplifiers with my factory head unit? I'm looking forward to Ur kind support.Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/25/2018

    Saul, Crutchfield's Vehicle Guide shows that your Acura's 7-speaker premium sound system actually consists of ten separate drivers: 2 tweeters, 2 woofers, and a center channel up front; two full-range speakers in the rear doors; 2 full-range speakers in the rear deck; and a subwoofer back there as well. Each one of these is powered by a separate channel of the factory amplifier. It sounds like you should call Crutchfield and talk to an Advisor who'll have all the information necessary to help you get great sound in your car with some aftermarket speakers.

  • Saul from Sylmar

    Posted on 5/24/2018

    2017 ILX premium ( 7 speakers; including a factory 8" subwoofer). I want to switch all front and rear factory speakers including the sub, the car does come with a factory amp. (Which by the way the speakers are a joke) . I want a little more thump without messing with the infotainment system. Factory amp is @ 4ohm , i'm sure it's 4 channel. Can I add a better amp , leaving the factory wiring alone?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/21/2018

    Daniel, Without knowing precisely what your amp is and what its input connections are, no one can say which setup would be better. From the wiring kit's point of view, you'd be ruining a perfectly good RCA cable instead of using speaker wire. But if your amp allows high-level input through its RCA connections, then you might as well cut connecters off and tap the bare wire-ends to the factory speaker wiring.

  • Daniel Nelson from Everett

    Posted on 5/16/2018

    Question: Seen there is a caution in the EFX Amplifier Wiring Kit 4-gauge w/Patch Cord manual that is confusing to me. Manual says CAUTION: If your stereo does not have RCA outputs, do not cut off the ends of the Scosche audio cable and connect/splice them to any speaker wires!!! You will need a line output converter to convert the speaker wires of the stereo into RCA line-level outputs. In my case I am using speaker level reference inputs to my infinity amp from my car's OEM HU with no RCA line outs. Would using the spliced RCA cables be better then plain wires in bring the speaker level signals out to the amp? They sure would be easier to connect RCA plugs on the amp side. Also since I am using speaker level inputs, the line output converter is not needed, it is already in the amp. Please advise, Thanks.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/24/2018

    Pete, I don't see why not. Although you might get better results using a line output converter with bass restoration, like an AudioControl LC7i, which also has all the inputs and outputs you'll need.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/24/2018

    Jay, A flickering receiver could be caused by a loose wire or the electrical system being overwhelmed by the amplifiers' appetite for power. If you bought any of your gear at Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help troubleshooting your system. Their toll-free number would on your invoice. If you purchased your equipment elsewhere, you can still get expert Crutchfield Tech Support - 90 days-worth for only $30. Click on this link for details.

  • Pete Godwin from Pemberton

    Posted on 4/22/2018

    I am attempting to connect an Alpine ktp445-U anplifier to my factory stereo using speaker level inputs on the amp. I would also like to add a powered sub in the future and still maintain the factory radio. Can the same wires I'm using for the inputs on the alpine amp be used for the subwoofer also? Or would I need a 5 channel LoC for that?

  • Jay from NPB

    Posted on 4/22/2018

    Hello Mr.Pomerantz, also wanted to note that I know it's not a scratched C.D. because although the high frequency skips happen in the same places, like the first of the 3 loud crashes in Rush's YYZ, at volume aren't present when volume is lowered to the 14 level area, and happen while idle/not moving - all connections are tight. Any help will be greatly appreciated, Jay.

  • Jay from NPB

    Posted on 4/22/2018

    Hello Mr. Pomerantz, I just installed a Pioneer AHV-200E H.U., Axcess steering wheel control module, Metra wire harness's, (1) Sound stream ST. 700D mono sub amp, Sound stream ST4 1200D, Pioneer 8" 150w RMS/300w Max. subs, (2) 75w RMS/225w Max. Infinity Kappas, (2) 30w RMS/60w Max. 2.75" OEM Jeep speakers, (2) 45w RMS/90w Max Infinity .75" tweeters, 1 Farad capacitor, and already have 160A alt. and a glass mat battery. I replaced the 700D with a 1000D mono sub amp only after 2 weeks because it was overheating - (cutting out for a few minutes before coming back on- protection mode) - I like it LOUD and listen to classic/hard rock. After installing the new 1000D it sounded great for the first few days - tight kick drum and warm punchy bass (*as per your installation tutorials). Then I discovered all the H.U. cross overs and the sound really came to life, but now my system is cutting off for .5 - 1 sec. on certain high notes when volume cranked 20-25 out of 40. I can still hear the subs but faintly when this happens and I have even caught the H.U. "blinking" flickering at me for .5 - 1sec. I have shut off HPF/LPF on the H.U. using the amps settings and it still happens. I have raised the LPF & lowered the HPF all the way on front/rear ch.'s of the 1200D amp in order to use the H.U.'s settings @ LPF =200Hz, HPF = 225Hz at 6 dB and it STILL happens. It sounds GREAT at vol. 25 with no distortion, but just cuts off, unless I turn it down to 14. I hope you can help me, Jay.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/19/2018

    Joe, Amplifiers that have speaker-level inputs have LOCs built in. There are no specific harnesses made for this application, but we sell the 9-conductor cable and connectors so you can make your own.

  • Joe from Greenbelt

    Posted on 4/19/2018

    I have a factory head unit on my Tacoma 2015 its a non JBL, if I get a amp with speaker level inputs will I need a LOC? Do you supply a harness for this

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/16/2018

    Mickey, As far as I can tell, the preamp outputs will be live when using speaker-level inputs.

  • Mickey Akins from Portland

    Posted on 4/15/2018

    If i use the 9 wire for connecting my pioneer 4 channel amp; will the rca bypass from that amp still be able to be used for connecting to my mono pioneer sub amp?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/9/2018

    Kevin, If you're just adding a subwoofer to a factory system you can tap the rear speaker wiring for inputs. Otherwise, this wiring technique described in this article doesn't apply to systems with a factory amplifier.

  • Kevin from Essington

    Posted on 4/5/2018

    Can't I just tap into the rear door speakers for signal and leave the factory speakers alone ? Will the high level inputs be affected by the factory amp?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/21/2018

    Michael, AudioControl's LC7i line converter has AccuBASS bass restoration onboard, so there's no need to add an Epicenter to the system.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/21/2018

    David, I'm not sure what you're intending, but the eight conductors should never be connected together. This article and illustration describe how to hook speakers up to an amp that has speaker-level inputs. You may need to use a line output converter to use this wiring technique.

  • Michael from Hampton

    Posted on 3/21/2018

    I am installing 2 amps one for a subwoofer and a 4 channel for the door speakers. I have a lc7i lone converter. Would a epicenter help with the subwoofer and would I hook up the epicenter to the lc7i? Or would just running it with the lc7i be good enough without an epicenter? The 2 amps are Rockford 400a4 and a bd1000a1.

  • David from Seattle

    Posted on 3/17/2018

    So with the 9-wire, i cut and attach 8 of one end into the respective speakers from the radio wire harness, and the other end? do i roll all 8 together and attach that to the input at the amp where the blue wire would normally go? The amp i have has RCA input jacks.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/7/2018

    Chris, In order to connect your Epicenter to a factory stereo will probably require a line output converter. And if your 4-channel amp doesn't have speaker-level inputs, it'll need one as well. Why don't you give us a call so an Advisor can help you get all the gear you need for a successful install.

  • Chris from Los Angeles

    Posted on 3/6/2018

    I have 2 amps (1 bass, 1 voice 4 channel) and an epicenter I would like to connect to my factory stereo. What would I need? A convertor or?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/6/2018

    Christopher, The second diagram of this article might help visualize what you want to do. In your case, with only a single speaker wire to tap into, you either tap the speaker wires twice, for the positive and negative left and right inputs, or just use one input.

  • Christopher Amerally from New York

    Posted on 3/2/2018

    I have the new JL Audio RD 500/1 amp. I purchased this amp cause it doesn't require a line out converter. I am still alittle confused as to how to install it correctly can you help me out. My goal is just use the factory oem subwoofer wire to tap into for signal to that amp via the JL Audio rca to speaker wire. The amp also comes with signal sensing no need for the blue wire. How to set it all up is what I need help with

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/16/2018

    Ty, One of the 9-conductor cables goes to the amp's speaker-level inputs, and the other goes to the amp's outputs.

  • Ty Weber from Dodge City, KS

    Posted on 2/14/2018

    so then where do you put the 9 wire cables in to the amp.