Chat
Contact us
Close contact box
Connect ID #
426 236 246 3
Connect ID #
426 236 246 3
All finished with your chat session?

We’ll email you a transcript of this conversation for your records.

Our contact center is currently closed.

Please enter your name.  
Please enter a valid email address. Why is this required?
Please enter your US phone number.  

For Tech Support, call 1-888-292-2575

Thank you, !
Our conversation will be emailed to
Chat Advisor Image

Your Advisor,

More about me
Please enter a question  
Don't wait on hold. We'll call you back when it's your turn to talk with the next available .
Please enter your name  
Please enter your phone number  

Please enter a message  

Calls may be recorded for training and quality control purposes.

We are located in Virginia USA.

Lead image

Disabling active noise cancellation (ANC) in your car

Bass noises come out of the speakers, even when the stereo's off

Recently, a customer commented, "I have a 2019 Honda Ridgeline RTL-T. I installed an aftermarket subwoofer. Now I get a loud bass tone that builds up and disappears. This happens randomly but only when the gas pedal is pressed. As the sound builds up in volume, I can stop it if I press the gas further or if I get off the gas completely. Weird thing is that the sound happens even when the audio is turned off."

Freaky bass sounds

The issue here is that his Honda has an "Active Noise Cancellation" (ANC) system that emits low-frequency sounds which are supposed to cancel-out the rumbling road, wind, and engine noises. ANC systems do not play well with subwoofers. Most car stereo installers disable the ANC systems in the vehicles they work on.

ANC keeps noise out of the car cabin.

Noise-cancelling system

Honda says, "Active Noise Cancellation (ANC) is designed to dramatically reduce low frequency noise in the interior. The system operates whenever the car is running, regardless of whether the audio system is on or off. There are two microphones in the cabin area. The microphones capture low-end drivetrain frequencies entering the cabin, and send a signal to the Active Noise Cancellation unit. The control unit then creates a precisely timed reverse phase audio signal that is sent to an amplifier, which powers the speakers."

The ANC cancels out the sound of the bass.

In short, the out-of-phase created noises cancel out the in-phase engine/road noises.

Noise-making systems

On the other side of the coin, some car manufacturers include an engine noise enhancement system that plays motor noises through the stereo as the engine revs up. Although a lot of gearheads might like this feature, it plays havoc with aftermarket sound systems.

The ANC can mess up the sound of an aftermarket sub.

How ANC reacts with an aftermarket sub

Here's the problem for the aftermarket audio crowd. When you install a subwoofer in one of these vehicles, the ANC system hears the subwoofer's output as being part of the engine/road noise it's supposed to cancel out. So, it emits an out of phase bass signal to block the sub's output. When the ANC doesn't hear any bass, it stops playing the out of phase signal, and the sub becomes audible again. Until the ANC kicks in again. And on and on.

Identifying ANC in your vehicle

Go online and look up your vehicle's features and specs. Manufacturers like to showcase all the high-tech features they put in their products and will most likely include ANC or something similar in the spec sheet.

Where is the ANC in your vehicle?

Another way to identify ANC

Let's say you've installed a subwoofer in your vehicle and horrible bass-like noises play as you drive and play music. After parking but continuing to play music, you can turn off the engine or even just open a door and if the subwoofer then plays as it should you'll know you've got an ANC issue to overcome in order to get good clean bass.

Disabling the ANC

If you disable the ANC in your vehicle, the engine and road noises you'll hear in the cabin will increase dramatically. Adding sound deadening material in as many places as possible should take care of that.

Two strategies for defeating active noise cancellation

Dealership: Check with the dealership to see if they'll disable the ANC in your vehicle, either by programming or disconnecting the right wires. Expect a fee, if they'll do it.

Internet search: Somebody, somewhere, at some time or another, has disabled the ANC in a vehicle like yours and then posted a video or comment online showing how they did it. Google is your friend — use it.

One possible ANC location.

One of the two ANC mics in the 2014 Honda Accord is inside this console

Examples that we've seen

When I looked up "how to disable the ANC in a 2019 Honda Ridgeline" I found a few threads in the Ridgeline Owners forum and a You Tube video that described how to do it. First remove the glovebox, then unplug the little silver/grey ANC module. Another thread tells how you can disable the ANC through the radio's diagnostic menu — but it reverts to being enabled the next time you start the vehicle.

Here are a few other examples that I've seen recently. These really show how solving this issue varies from one vehicle to the next.

  • On a Camaro forum, I found out that unplugging the microphones in the door panels is a simple and reversible way to disable the ANC.
  • PAC offers an ANC bypass harness that works in select 2017-up Chrysler Pacifica and 2019-up Jeep Cherokee and Ram trucks.
  • Crutchfield offers the iDatalink bCH3 ANC bypass harness that also works in select 2017-up Chrysler Pacifica and 2019-up Ram trucks.
  • Mustang's Active Noise Control system both cancels some low frequency noises and adds in some higher-frequency engine noise. On a Mustang forum, someone has posted a video showing how to find and disconnect one of the microphones in the headliner, apparently disabling the ANC system.
  • Kicker's vehicle-specific powered subwoofer upgrade for a Chevy Silverado includes instructions on how to disable the ANC by unplugging the mic in the driver's side headliner. Disconnecting just one mic will disable the entire ANC.
  • On a Honda Pilot Touring SUV, however, you must unplug both the front and rear microphones to disable the ANC system.

Give us a call

ANC issues mostly come about when an aftermarket subwoofer is added to a factory system. And there's no better way to ensure you get the right subwoofer, as well as all the necessary accessories and installation instructions, than by talking with a Crutchfield Advisor.

Advisors have access to our extensive vehicle database that often includes a warning about any onboard ANC system and instructions on how to disable it — so you can successfully install a sub in a vehicle whose stock system was prejudiced against bass.

  • Chris Chausse from Fort Wayne, IN

    Posted on 10/7/2021

    I had this happen in my 2020 CRV. Pulling my hair out for a while with this. None of the Crutchfield techs I talked to ever suggested this which really surprised me. After endless google searches, I became aware of this ANC system. Once I unplugged the unit, my frustrations were gone. I can finally can listen to my 2 JL 10s and smile.

  • John from Oxford nc

    Posted on 9/25/2021

    I've just got an sub an amp installed in a 2019 ford ecosport se I do I bypass the anc

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/27/2021

    John, If your vehicle has an active noise cancellation system that interferes with your aftermarket bass, you should disable it. To find out how, check with your car dealership or an online forum dedicated to your model vehicle.
  • Norm from Andover

    Posted on 8/21/2021

    Wow, did I spend a lot of time trying to find what caused this LF oscillation. Tried a *lot* of stuff before I *finally* saw this article...

  • Frank Duran from Pembroke Pines

    Posted on 5/25/2021

    I have a 2021 Honda CR-V EX L with factory radio. Installed a subwoofer Sound Ordnance B-8PTD under right rear seat and was having humming and out of phase sound issues. I read this comment on Crutchfield and disconnected the plug from the ANC module and turned off the SVC to off. No more issues. Sounds great so far. Thanks.

  • Gene from Butler, NJ

    Posted on 4/30/2021

    One of my co-workers said in a acura tlx that had this issue all he did was put a resistor either on the power wire or the remote turn on wire i dont know which one he said but he said it fixed it just wondering if it would fix it in my 2014 honda accord the sub i have is the rockford fosgate 300w sealed amp + sub

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/30/2021

    Gene, An online search for bypassing the ANC in a 2014 Honda Accord gives a few links that show you how.
  • Jason Glaze

    Posted on 4/4/2021

    Any ideas on disabling ANC on 2015 Yukon xl with bose its causing terrible noise in the sub and just all together cutting signal I am using APSUB-GM61 PAC that I ordered from crutchfield which come to find out was supposed to have included an anc bypass harness but it wasn't in the package and I realized too late to do a return NEED HELP

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/5/2021

    Jason, Give us a call, so an Advisor or Tech Supporter can help, if we have the appropriate ANC bypass harness. Otherwise, I you can check some Yukon forums for possible solutions.
  • Shawn from Fort Wayne

    Posted on 3/20/2021

    Anyone know a quick way to disable the ANC on a 2021 Malibu without Bose. Production IOR code with the amp located under the glove box. Unable to locate anc module in center kick area near BCM or in the rear of the car. Some have suggested following mic wire on driver side and just disconnecting mic.

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/31/2021

    Shawn, I suggest consulting some Malibu forums about it. Googling "disable ANC in '21 Malibu" may turn up some helpful tips.
  • Jeffery Hoops, II from Scott Depot

    Posted on 3/10/2021

    I know that there are two ANC mics in the sound bar of my 2019 JLU Wrangler that came with the premium Alpine system. I've replaced almost everything, and the woofer is blasting ANC noise as soon as I shut the door. Does anyone know where all.of the mics are located?

    Commenter image

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/31/2021

    Jeffery, I suggest consulting some Wrangler forums about it. Googling "disable ANC in '19 JLU Wrangler" may turn up some helpful tips.
  • Anthony Ferraro from Fayette

    Posted on 7/6/2020

    I have been troubleshooting this low-end phase phenomenon on my own for years in a 2012 Lincoln MKZ with a premium THX factory sound system. I threw in the towel today and am so happy to see this before I started tearing it apart. I am now a loyal Crutchfield customer for all my car audio needs!