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Amplifier wire gauge chart

How to determine the best size wire for your amp's power and ground

In order to operate correctly, an amplifier needs its power and ground wiring to be large enough to accommodate its demand for electrical current. What wire gauge (thickness) to use for power cabling depends on how much current your system will try to consume, and on how long the wiring run will be.

Understanding the needs of your system can help you know when to choose 4-gauge wire instead of 8-gauge wire. Do a little bit of math and then consult our wire size chart below. Of course, if you're looking for a new car amplifier, we list the recommended amp wiring kit with each amp. 

The formulas for calculating current draw

To determine the approximate current draw (in amperes) of your amplifier, you must first calculate the total power of the system. Multiply the number of channels by the number of RMS watts per channel. If you have multiple amps, add up the total RMS power figures to arrive at a grand total.

Generally speaking, there are two kinds of amplifiers — Class D and Class AB — so there are two formulas for calculating current draw. (You can read the detailed explanation below the chart.) You use the formula that applies to your amplifier. If you don't know what Class your amplifier is, use the Class AB calculations for the safest result.

Class D amplifier: total RMS Wattage divided by 0.75 Amp Efficiency divided by 13.8 Volts equals Current Draw in Amperes

Class AB amplifier: total RMS Wattage divided by 0.50 Amp Efficiency divided by 13.8 Volts equals Current Draw in Amperes

The resulting figure is your system's approximate maximum current draw, whichever kind of amplifier you have. Compare this number to the numbers in the "Amperes" column in the chart below. Now figure out the cable length you'll need — that's the distance from your battery to the amplifier's mounting location. Cross-reference these two figures in the chart to determine which gauge of cable you need.

Please note that  the smaller the gauge number, the larger the wire. 1/0 ("one-aught") is the common name for a 0-gauge wire; 2/0 ("two-aught") for a 00-gauge wire.

Wire size calculator

Wire gauge size chart

Note: This chart is for copper wire only. Copper-clad aluminum (CCA) wire cannot handle the amount of current that a copper wire of the same size can.

A more detailed explanation

Here is an explanation about the formulas we use, in case you want more details. Calculating the amplifier's total power is straightforward, but the other parts can be confusing.

Calculating Current: Joule's Law

Current (Amperes) equals Power (Watts) divided by Voltage (Volts)

But no amplifier is 100% efficient

The above formula, by itself, doesn't take into account the inefficiency inherent to power production. That needs to get factored in.

Current (Amperes) equals Power (Watts) divided by Amp Efficiency (X%) divided by Voltage (Volts)

By factoring in this inefficiency for each class of amplifier, we arrive at the two formulas listed above:

The formula for Class D amps

A typical Class D amplifier is about 75% efficient, which means about three quarters of the power it generates is turned into audio output while one quarter of the power is lost as heat. So if the amplifier is putting out 400 watts, it's actually drawing about 533 watts of power from its source, and the amp's wiring needs to be big enough to handle that draw.

  • A Class D amplifier's Current Draw equals its RMS output Wattage divided by 75% Efficiency divided by 13.8 Volts

The formula for Class AB amps 

A typical Class AB amplifier is about 50% efficient, which means about half of the power it generates is turned into audio output while the other half of the power is lost as heat. So if the amplifier is putting out 400 watts, it's actually drawing about 800 watts of power from its source, and the amp's wiring needs to be big enough to handle that draw.

  • A Class AB amplifier's Current Draw equals its RMS output Wattage divided by 50% Efficiency divided by 13.8 Volts

Automotive voltage is neither 12 volts nor 14.4 volts

And the 13.8? Yes, vehicles have a 12-volt electrical system, but we're assuming that the vehicle is running — which means its alternator will bump up the system voltage to about 13.8 volts. This is a better real-world representation of the vehicle's electrical supply. Dividing by 12 results in a larger number, which could point to a larger wire gauge, but it's often in the same color range in the chart. Manufacturers use 14.4 volts, when they spec their gear, to exaggerate their power ratings.

Resistance increases with wire length

The reason different cable lengths bear different ratings is because the electrical resistance, inherent in all wire, builds up as the cable gets longer, until it forces the voltage to drop below a useable level. At that point, up-sizing the power cable will restore the voltage to its intended level.

Wire size matters for current flow

Finally, according to our tech support guys, the primary performance limitation in most amplifier installations is in the current delivery — either a weak ground or insufficient wire gauge. Installing too small of a wire gauge results in poor performance, potentially shorter service life of connected components (your amplifier and speakers), and a potential safety hazard.

On the other hand, installing too large a wire gauge doesn't really have any downside, and there is the potential for better performance. Obviously, there's no need to buy 2-gauge wiring when 10-gauge will do. That kind of overkill would be a waste of money. But if the chart could lean either way between two sizes, going with the larger wire size would be the smart choice.

What size speaker wire do I need?

Speaker wiring matters too. The signal and power coming out of your amplifier must not be impeded on their way to your speakers and subs. When you replace or run new speaker wiring, we recommend using: 

  • 18-, 16-, or 14-gauge wires for speakers
  • 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wires for subwoofers

As with the power wire, the longer the run and the more current you're pushing through it, the larger size you should use. For example, if your amp is in the trunk and you're sending 100 watts to your front speakers, 14-gauge speaker wire is a good call. But if the amp is only 50 watts, 16-gauge would be fine. 

Let us help you get what you need

Now that you have some idea of how much amp wiring you need, shop our selection of amplifier wiring and accessories. We have amp wiring kits, distribution blocks, and everything else you need. And if you have any questions about putting together a shopping list, contact our advisors via phone, email, or chat — the info is at the top of this page. If you want to learn more about amplifier installation, read our amplifier installation guide

  • JC from Hastings, NE

    Posted on 11/26/2020

    Two class D amps - one fused for 120a, the other 80a - currently powered by 2ga (true gauge, not awg) copper cable. Any potential problems? I'd like to avoid the absurd cost of copper 1/0, but safety is my main concern. Thanks.

  • John from Prattville, AL

    Posted on 11/19/2020

    Buck...I'm installing a Rockford Fosgate T400X4ad amplifier (Crutchfield purchase). It's a class AD amplifier so I'm unsure how to calculate the correct power wire gauge. I'm running a power cable from my 2000 Silverado extended cab's battery to a two output distribution block colocated with the amplifier under the back seat. From the second distro block output I'm powering a JBL Basspro SL woofer. I estimate the power cable length will be 15 feet. Can you advise?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/20/2020

    John, You can run 8- or 4-gauge wire from the battery to the distribution block in your setup.
  • Anu from DC

    Posted on 11/11/2020

    Thanks for the helpful content. I'm going to be running a JL XD600/6v2 and a JL XD600/1v2. Each of those require a 50a fuse, and 4AWG wire. Before reading this article, I thought that meant I would need to run a 2AWG (or 1/0 AWG) wire from the battery to a distribution block, then run two 4AWG out of those. But after reading the article, it sounds like I could actually just a run 4AWG wire from battery to distribution block, then run two 4AWG out of those. Using common sense, I figured I need twice the wire if I need two 4AWG coming out of the block, but now after reading your article I'm realizing my amps would not have been using _all_ of the current that each 4AWG can handle. So, should I be running a single 2 (or 1/0) gauge wire from the battery, or is it OK to run a single 4AWG and split that into two 4AWG wires? I'm not looking to cut any corners, so I only want to run the 4AWG if there is zero ambiguity. Thank you!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/12/2020

    Anu, Using 4-gauge wiring all around will work fine for your system.
  • Mike F. from PETALUMA

    Posted on 11/8/2020

    Buck Is it ok to use the same OFC 10 gauge wire to distribute power to the amps and to send signal to the sub as speaker wire?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/11/2020

    Mike, That's probably over-kill using 10-gauge wire for speaker wiring, but if it fits, go for it.
  • Stevie from Boynton Beach

    Posted on 11/1/2020

    Hey Buck, I'm not sure if my current wiring is up to snuff for my 2 new Alpine amps. The Alpine R-A60F & Alpine R-A75M. My current setup is 4 Gauge w/60a AGU fuse at batt., running about 10ft long to the distribution block. Then 8 Gauge, 3ft, to sub amp & another 8 Gauge, 4ft, to mid/high amp. I believe I would need bigger fuses at the battery & dist. block for sure...not sure on sizes though. Thanks kindly!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/2/2020

    Stevie, The setup you describe will work safer with a 100A to 120A fuse by the battery. If you use a fused distribution block, just match the fuse sizes with what the amps have.
  • Matthew. Moore from Ipswich Brisbane Aus

    Posted on 10/13/2020

    Hi guy s iam Australian and I am starting to build my system ok I have kicker was 67splits and will be running them off two kicker zx 700"5 amp wring Size is what iam chasing size do I need to run I awful to my cap to db to Amos all so what size fuse thank you

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/15/2020

    Matthew, Those two amplifiers will require a 1/0-gauge wire, with at least a 200A fuse by the battery, run to a distribution block, so each amp can get a 4-gauge power lead.
  • Michael A Wall from Warner Robins

    Posted on 10/12/2020

    One of the best detailed explanations I've found on the internet. As a licensed electrician I am familiar with ohm's law yet was finding difficulty figuring in amplifier efficiency into my wiring sizing formula. This explanation/charting is an excellent tool to have available. Thank you very much!

  • Bryan Lillard from Sanger

    Posted on 9/16/2020

    I recently purchased 2 12' JL Audio w/a 4000 watt amp. I was told each speaker runs on 1400 watts. What gauge do I need to run for power & ground. I'm looking to buy a stereo that has RCA plugs, to bypass a converter. Alternatively would you recommend anything else?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/16/2020

    Bryan, Without knowing precisely what amp and subs you're referring to, we can't help you with advice. If you want a question answered about a system, you must identify the gear by brand names and model numbers so we can get the right information to you.
  • Colin Moody from Hamilton

    Posted on 9/12/2020

    Hello Buck. I've just brought a dual sub box with 2x Fusion Encounter en-ab2122 and I have a 2 channel Boss Phantom PH2.1300 2600w amp which I will place in my boot. I would also like to run my rear 6x9's off the amp. Would I bridge the subs on the bridge channel and bridge the speakers on the other? Also what gauge wiring would you recommend?

  • Liam from London

    Posted on 9/12/2020

    I have focal 1000.1 amplifier and it's max rms is 700 at 2 ohms, but I will set it to 600 rms with multimeter at 2 ohms, so should I count amplifier max power or how much power I will use?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/14/2020

    Liam, You can get by using power wire suitable for your amp's actual output.
  • zane from spanish fort

    Posted on 9/10/2020

    Hey Buck, I am installing two 800 W amps and a 400 W amp. They will be pushing two 12" Cerwin-Vegas. What all do I need to wire these puppies up in a '75 Buick Century? Thanks!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/13/2020

    Hi Zane, Give us a call and an Advisor can hook you up with everything you and your puppies need.
  • Kulas Pusa

    Posted on 8/20/2020

    Hi Buck! Thank you for the quick reply. Here's the brand name and a link to the amazon page. AOSHIKE DC12V-24V 2.1 Channel TPA3116 Subwoofer Amplifier Board High Power Bluetooth Audio Amplifier Board DIY (Bluetooth Amp with Case) [Link removed] Here's the board tpa3116d2 specs the amp is using. [Link removed] Thank you for your help! -k

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/21/2020

    Kulas, That amp, as you plan to set it up, will work fine with 10-gauge (AWG) power and ground wiring.
  • Kulas Pusa

    Posted on 8/20/2020

    I bought a 2.1 channel class d amp (50w left ch + 50w right ch + 100w sub). Spec sheet says it is 90% efficient. Questions: 1. Should I use .75 as the efficiency value, or should I use the spec sheet's value of 90% or (.9) ?; 2. Is the total RMS 200watts? The spec sheet only mentioned it can provide 50w for both stereo channels and 100w for the sub. No mention of the RMS.; 3. If I dont plan to use the subwoofer channel, should I still use the total RMS of 200 in my computation, or do I use 100?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/20/2020

    Kulas, Without knowing precisely what amp you're referring to, we can't help you with advice. If you want a question answered about a system, you must identify the gear by brand names and model numbers so we can get the right information to you. We can tell you that the power and ground wires need only be big enough for the amount of power the amp actually employs.
  • Jeffrey Yocum from Atco

    Posted on 8/14/2020

    Running a Alpine Kta-450 and a JL Audio JD 500/1. My question is should I run 2 separate sets off the battery or run a single with a distribution block. Considering they have different wiring requirements I was sure if that would be a good idea. It has been a while since I have wired an audio system. Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/18/2020

    Jeffrey, Most people run one wire from the battery through the firewall because it's simpler than running two. But either way will work.
  • Monu from Udaipur

    Posted on 8/5/2020

    Hello, I want to know that what size of wire is required for running 600 watt rms amplifier (sony xm gs100) at 4 feet distance from power source.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/6/2020

    Monu, Using the formula, 600 divided by 0.75 divided by 13.8 yields 58 amperes. Looking on the chart you can tell that for a 4-foot run 10-gauge AWG size wire will do. That's 5.26mm2 in metric.
  • Fred from London

    Posted on 7/27/2020

    Hi Just installing A Hertz DPower 4 with 4-DCX 130.3 (1 in each door). I was hoping I could leave the stock speaker wiring intact?.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/29/2020

    Fred, Yes you can use factory wiring for powering speakers from an amp.
  • Brian Lonkert from Leonardtown

    Posted on 7/27/2020

    I have an old MTX 801d (class D) powering an old 10" kicker sub (800Wx1 RMS @ 2ohms) and a pioneer GM-A6704 (Class AB) (60Wx4 RMS or 240W RMS) for a total of 1040W RMS or 112.1A. Would a 4 AWG power wire (w/100 Amp fuse at battery) going to a distribution block with 4 AWG wire going from that to the MTX and another 4 AWG wire going to the pioneer be good? New to this stuff and I lack the confidence to make the decision...your input would be greatly appreciated.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/29/2020

    Brian, That all sounds good, except that that 4-channel amp can use 8-gauge power and ground wires.
  • Joe from Hudson

    Posted on 6/10/2020

    What size speaker wire should I use for my ds18 pro 2.5k rms amp and a 3k watt 15inch skar sub????

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/10/2020

    Joe, We recommend using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wiring for subwoofers
  • Brady from Tokerau Beach

    Posted on 6/3/2020

    Very informative and sorted my amp going into protection mode

  • Dale Weatherby from Hinckley

    Posted on 5/23/2020

    Completely new to car audio and looking for some advice. Currently have two Kicker SD10" Subwoofers and will be getting the Hertz Millie Pro MPK 165.3 Pro components for up front. I've got my eyes on two second hand amps, the Kicker ZX1000. 1 for the two 8ohm subs running parralel at 4ohms, and the Kicker ZX200. 2 for the components. Will these amps be fine for the subs and components? Also can you suggest a decent wiring kit for all?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/26/2020

    Dale, I can't find out anything about those subs, so I can't tell you if that amp matches them or not. You can use a 1/0-gauge dual amp wiring kit plus some 8-gauge wire for wiring.
  • spiro zografakis from vancouver

    Posted on 5/8/2020

    HI I have a 78 buick century,with a delco remy alt. at @ 90 amps ,i am combining two batteries together via 120 amp rated A.C.R. relay combiner.(blue seas p/n 7611). Need to know if i can get away with using 10 awg wire to wire the combiner system to the battery volts sense points. Max current of all devices in car is @ less or equal to 70 amps even less,cable lengths used are 7ft for both cables,what do you think,should i use their recommended 6-8 awg cables. pls advise a d.i.y. car guy. Be as technical as you can i have excellent knowledge of car and d.c. elx systems. thxs

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/11/2020

    Spiro, There's no need to get technical or try to figure out what size wire to use. You should always use whatever the manufacturer of the device recommends.
  • Juan from Conroe

    Posted on 5/4/2020

    Hello I will be running a pioneer GM-A5702 I will be using a sky high audio 8 guage true ofc amp kit is that sufficient?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/6/2020

    Juan, 8-gauge power and ground wires will work fine for that amp.
  • Louis from VALLEJO

    Posted on 4/24/2020

    I have a Kenwood Mono block Amp that says it will push 500 at 2 ohms, I have it wired to a 10 inch Solo Baric Kicker...My question is "If I'm running 4 guage wiring to the amp, would I lose power running 8 guage to the speaker???"

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/25/2020

    Louis, Speaker wiring doesn't carry nearly the amount of current as power cables do, so it can be small. For subwoofers, we recommend using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge speaker wires.
  • Tony Ofton from Blakely

    Posted on 4/20/2020

    I have a 2000 watts skar audio amp 28000 watts max on 2 12 inch qpower 3000 watts audio speakers so what is the right gauge wire to use and run a pioneer 760 watts amps on my front and back speakers in a 2006 Chevy Malibu ls

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/20/2020

    Tony, To run that amount of power you'll need to use 1/0-gauge wire from the battery to a distribution block. Use a 200-225A fuse near the battery. Check out Kicker's dual amp wiring kit for a convenient wiring package.
  • jeff damer from Spout Spring

    Posted on 3/29/2020

    Hello I have a Kicker 46CXA360.4T amp in my car. I am using the 8 guage wiring kit with it. My issue is it gets really hot almost to the point you cant touch it. I also have a Kicker 46CXA400.1T connected with the same wiring kit and branched off with a distribution block. Is this ok? I havent had the amp go into protect mode yet.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/30/2020

    Jeff, If it were me, I'd use 4-gauge power and ground wire for your setup. That 4-channel amp is Class AB and will run hot.
  • Mike from Atlantic City

    Posted on 2/22/2020

    Skar Audio 1200.1D Amp powering one Kicker L7S 10" @ 2ohm in a sealed enclosure... 4 ga cables w/ 80A fuse, twisted triple shielded rca's, and 14 ga speaker wire.. would this build work and sound decent?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 2/24/2020

    Mike, I think that amp is a little too powerful for that sub.
  • Jerad Cranke from Tulsa

    Posted on 2/11/2020

    This is a bit off the topic, being I'm planning out a bigger system for a '19 HD Street Glide. However, I was wanting to see if a 1410W RMS (speakers totalled) being powered by an AudioControl LC6.1200 & their LC4.800 would be too much. I don't currently know the exact voltage the bike is at while running, but going off of 14.4 (which is close based on observation of voltmeter in fairing), I come up w/ 1410W/14.4V=97.9A Speakers: (6) 6.5", (4) 6x9", & (2) 8" The (2) 8" would be the only two connected to the LC4.800 w/ two bridged channels, the rest of the speakers would be configured @ 2ohm (2/channel), leaving channel 6 open. Both amps would be mounted in tour pack as well, nothing in fairing. I plan on having power come from under driver seat & going back to a distro block in the rear touring pack (takes place of sissy bar), so my run will not be near as long as it would be in a car. Based on how short this is, it seems I would be safe using 8awg for power/ground, but is it possible to use 10awg for that short?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 2/11/2020

    Jerad, You don't figure a system's power requirements by using the speaker ratings, but by using the amplifiers' total RMS output power. In your case, one amp will be able to put out five channels of up to 200 watts RMS each and the other amp two channels of up to 400 watts RMS each, for a grand total of 1800 watts RMS. Using the formula in the article for Class D amplifiers: 1800/.75/13.8 = 173.9 amperes. Assuming the power wire will be under 10' long, the Wire size calculator chart shows you'll need 4-gauge power and ground wire.
  • Jordan Thomas from Bakersfield

    Posted on 1/23/2020

    I'm currently running 2 amplifiers, a 1,600 watt rated with a 60 amp fuse, and a 1500 watt rated with a 50 amp fuse; totaling 110 amps. There currently is no fuse/block to protect the battery, AKA the "main power source", only a fused distribution block totaling 150 amps! How many amps should the fuse block located by the battery be?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/23/2020

    Jordan, Fuses, in mobile audio applications, protect the power wires, your vehicle, and your life against fire in the event of a short circuit. The battery is the source of power and doesn't need protection from itself. An inline fuse should be installed on the main power wire as close to the battery as possible. The fuse size will depend on the size of the wire. For 4-gauge wire, use an 80-125A fuse. For 1/0-gauge wire, 150-250A fuse.
  • Marcos from Suiza

    Posted on 12/22/2019

    Hi, I need your help, please, I have two options to connect 4 speakers of Skar Audio PAX 65 4 ohms single coil of 260 rms each to a Taramps TS 2000.4 class D amplifier The other option is to connect them in parallel to a two-channel Class D 1602 band amplifier. My question which cable to use? 12-14 or 16 awg and if it is better to pass a cable with shield or a simple cable thank you very much in advance

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/23/2019

    Marcos, For speakers, use 14- or 16-gauge non-shielded speaker wire.
  • Steve from Greenville

    Posted on 12/10/2019

    I want to run a 2 amps in my boat. A JL Audio M600/6 amp to 6 JL Audio MX650 speakers and a JL Audio MX500/4 to 2 JL Audio M3-10IB subwoofers. Will a 12ft run of 4awg OFC wire to a JL Audio XD-FDBU-2 fused distribution block be enough? What gauge wire from the fused block to each amp? Also what fuse size for each amp? Thanks

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/10/2019

    Hi Steve, 4-gauge wire with a 75-100A fuse near the battery will work. Both amplifiers call for a 50A fuse. For the short runs from the distribution block to each amplifier you can use 4- or 8-gauge wire.
  • Jacob from Atlanta

    Posted on 12/9/2019

    Hi. I am wanting to add the KICKER - CompRT 10" Dual Voice Coil 4 Ohm which is a 400 watt rms sub. I was going to use the Pioneer GM-D9701 which is a 500 watt Rms @ 4 ohm amp. Do I use the 500 watt rms (@4ohm) for my wiring calculations or do I use the 1200 watt rms (@ohm)? Im really new to car audio so what guage wiring would you recomend for both the amp and speaker wires? Thanks!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/10/2019

    Jacob, A single DVC 4-ohm sub can only get wired as a 2-ohm or an 8-ohm load. That amplifier can put out 800 watts RMS at 2 ohms, which is twice that sub's RMS rating. That amp will probably blow that sub to smithereens.
  • Steve from Greenville

    Posted on 12/5/2019

    I want to run a 2 amps in my boat. A class D 600x6rms amp and a class D 500x4rms. Will a 12ft run of 4awg to a fused distribution block be enough to handle this power? And what gauge 1-2ft away from the fused block to each amp? Also fuse size?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/5/2019

    Steve, The wattage specs you quote are confusing - are those per channel ratings, or total power at 2 ohms, at 4 ohms? Not knowing exactly what amplifiers you refer to makes it impossible to give advice on how to wire them together. If you want a question answered about your system, you must identify the equipment by brand names and model numbers.
  • Juan Herrera from Granite city

    Posted on 12/2/2019

    I have the Kenwood KAC-304 4 channel amp. My front speakers are 90watts rms and the rears are 60watts rms. Would this amp be enough power to run?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/2/2019

    Juan, That amp will drive those speaker just fine. A speaker's rating is there to show you what power not to exceed.
  • Sinan MORAN from MALATYA

    Posted on 11/13/2019

    Sony XS-GSW121 520W rms power of my subwoofer Sony XM-N1004 amplifier to run the 2 channels at home. I connected a 100 rms watt Sony XS-XB6941 oval to the other two channels. I have a 12 volt 100 amp single output adapter. What should be the cable cross-section for a 520 watt subwoofer by a distance of 3 meters? How many awg should it be?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 11/14/2019

    Sinon, That amplifier needs 8-gauge AWG (10mm2) power and ground wiring.
  • Tim from Boscobel

    Posted on 9/4/2019

    installing a new system, that consists of a JL audio jx400/4D, and an Alpine M500D. The sub amp will be running 500w @2ohms.....the 4 channel will be 300w@ 4ohms, for a total of 800w@75% efficiency. According to my calculations, my peak current draw will be 75.36 amps. I have a 100% copper 4 gauge kit coming on question for you is, how do you determine what amperage fuse to put at the battery? I also have a fused block, on the amp side, my Alpine has two 30amp onboard I just guessed I should use a 60amp fuse for the Alpine side of the block. The Jx 400/4D has no onboard fuses, I saw somewhere, somebody recommended a 40amp fuse for the jx....would this be accurate? If so, should I go with a 100amp at the battery, and one 60amp, and one 40 amp in the fuse block? Thank you

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/4/2019

    Tim, The fuse at the battery is there to protect the wire and your car in the event of a short circuit. 4-gauge wire should be protected by a fuse anywhere from 75A to 125A in size. Your figuring is correct: you can use 100A fuse at the battery and a 60A for the sub amp and 40A for the 4-channel.
  • Paul from Panama City Beach

    Posted on 8/3/2019

    I have a 1,200 watt razor 4 CH bridgeable 2 ohm stable power acoustik amp which I believe is 600 RMS and a 2,500 watt power acoustik Gothic subwoofer.. which it says 1200 RMS but I don't believe that... I was wondering how should I wire it to get Max power without blowing anything Plz hlp!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 8/6/2019

    Paul, To get the most out of that amp, use two channels bridged together and to the sub like this diagram. That'll feed the sub 300 watts RMS, well below the 1200 watts RMS rating.
  • Bryan G from sacramento

    Posted on 6/24/2019

    so im looking to just add a powered sub, upgrade the factory speakers and head unit, stock is 2x 4in 2x 6.5in and 2x 6x9in speakers, the new speakers are all 30w rms, 4 ohms, 1, can i run the two 4in off the headunit rated at 16w rms, peak 50w on 4 channels, 2, would i need a amp for the two 6.5in and two 6x9in speakers, based on total of 260w rms plugged in to the equation (2(260)x.75)/13.8 i get 28.3a would 10ga work?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/25/2019

    Bryan, Without knowing precisely what vehicle, what its factory system consists of, and what upgrades you want, we can't help you with system planning. If you're adding a powered sub, you should use whatever size power wire is called for in its owner's manual, or correctly use the formula in this article knowing the RMS wattage of the amp.
  • Jared from Colorado Springs

    Posted on 6/3/2019

    Hi Buck, I am upgrading my sub amp and want a second option on the wiring. Here's my current set up - 4 awg OFC fused at the battery (80 amps) to a fused distribution block in my trunk. One 8 awg ofc power wire runs (40 amp AGU fuse in the distro block) to power a Kicker Cxa400.1 amp for my sub and a second 8 awg ofc power wire (in second output from the distro block, fused at 40 amps) to a Rockford Fosgate 1 farad capacitor. I had it professionally installed and was surprised that they wired the cap to its own fuse. Negative d block is three 8 gauge inputs to one 4 gauge output grounded to the car (one Input unused).Now I am upgrading my amp to a Kicker CXA600.1 (2016 model), which will be ran at 2 ohms. Given the short run from the distro block to the amp, can I use the same 8 awg ofc wire fused at 80 amps? Should I rewire this setup to use just one distro block positive wire output (d block wired to cap, then run the amp directly off the cap) to make the best use of the cap? Or since the cxa600.1 calls for 4 gauge, should I upgrade to all 4 gauge ofc (and if yes, again,should it be distro block to cap to amp)? Lastly, I think my alternator is only rated for 105 amps, am i pushing it with this amp and cap? I have upgraded to an amg battery but I'm wondering if a Big 3 upgrade (with 0 gauge) is going to be necessary. If it matters, I don't plan on blasting the sub amp at max power, the smaller amp I have now is just a little too weak, but not much....thank you!!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/3/2019

    Jared, I think you can leave the wiring as is for the new amp. The increase in power isn't enough to justify larger cable.
  • Ryan Moone from Bedford

    Posted on 5/27/2019

    I am looking at installing 2 kicker marine amps, 4 channels each in my boat, both the 44KXMA400.4. Is 4g from the battery to the fused distribution block, then split into 8g to each amps sufficient? This will be powering 6 kicker km65 (65rms x 6) boat speakers and 2 Kicker 45KM84L (150rms x 2).

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/28/2019

    Ryan, That sounds good to me. Don't forget the inline fuse near the battery. An 80A or 100A fuse will work best.
  • Dinzel from Columbus

    Posted on 5/25/2019

    I wanna put 2 amps in my car I have the Kicker CS speakers that's 6x9 and our 150 a piece and I wanna run my two front speakers to a amp that's rated 300 watts and I have 2 audiopipe and there rated at 1800 rmsand I have a amp for that's rated 1800 rms and I wanna put it in my Toyota Camry LE 2006 and I have a Sony deck that's supporting front speakers and for a sub I know the formula is 2100/13.8 which is 152.17 so I know my amp fuse should be around 100-200 more likely I wanna put a 200 amp fuse in and should I go with 2 gauge or 0 gauge since it's about 16-19ft?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/28/2019

    Dinzel, You didn't take into account your amplifiers' efficiency. If they're Class AB amps, you divide total wattage by one-half (the amps' efficiency) before dividing by 13.8 volts, getting 304A, which will work with 1/0-gauge wire and a 300A fuse. If they're Class D amps, you divide total wattage by three-quarters (the amps' efficiency) before dividing by 13.8 volts, getting 203A, which will work with 1/0-gauge wire and a 200A fuse.
  • mike from durant

    Posted on 5/20/2019

    at what power level should you upgrade your factory speaker wire or use bigger than the 18ga speed wires?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/20/2019

    Mike, A system powered at 100 watts or more per channel will benefit from using larger gauge speaker wire.
  • Dustin Williams from Pomona

    Posted on 5/15/2019

    I'm running a Orion CB3500.1D Cobalt Series Monoblock Class D 1-Ohm Amplifier wired at 1ohm with two Kicker L7's in a ported enclosure. I'm using a Kicker 4g wiring kit with a 100amp fuse. Do you think I need a 0 gauge wire as the amp has been tested to put our 1400-1500rms at 1ohm load?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/16/2019

    Dustin, I would use 1/0-gauge power and ground wires for that amplifier seeing it has 200-amps worth of fusing.
  • Al germany from riverside ca

    Posted on 5/8/2019

    I have a t1500 1dcp and kicker 250 4 channel amp running off of 4 gauge wire with one 200 watt fuse is that safe to run or should each amp have it own fuse?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/8/2019

    Al, To be safe, besides the fuse near the battery, each amplifier's power lead after the distribution block should also be fused - 200A for the sub amp, 60A for the other.
  • Justice from Phoenix

    Posted on 5/4/2019

    Is your chart based on cca or off wiring because all of my amp wires are off and from what I've been told it supports a significant amount more power than it's cca equivalent. I'm going to be running 3 amps (1 sub) and 2x4 channels) the 4 channels have very different RMS Ratings (300 Watts and 1000 Watts) and I basically want to verify that I'm putting the right speakers to the best amp based on a tual power they're going to see from each amp and obviously the wires can have a huge effect on that. Thanks in advance

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 5/6/2019

    Justice, This chart is for copper wire, whether oxygen-free or not. Generally, copper-clad aluminum (CCA) wire can only safely carry about 60-70% of what copper wire of the same diameter can.
  • Damon King from Whitehouse Station

    Posted on 4/22/2019

    Would 8 Gauge Rockford Fosgate amp install kit from the battery to the amps on Alpine MRV-F300 and Alpine Alpine MRV-M500 suffice? Looking at running from battery to front seats which is under 12 feet. MRV-F300 will be 50 watts by 4 configuration. I did the math 500 total watts multiplied by 1.25 (Class D 80% efficient) divided by 13.8 and end up with 45 Amps.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/25/2019

    Damon, That 8=gauge amp kit will work just fine in your amp installation.
  • Scott from Green Bay

    Posted on 4/19/2019

    I'm about to overhaul my Pontiac G6 system, including new main speakers and stereo (pioneer AVH-X4800BS). I already replaced the rear speakers and noticed the wires are tiny. Maybe 18ga, but I'm not sure. I don't plan to add an amp to the mains right now and not sure if I will in the future, so would it be worth it to upgrade the speaker wiring now when just running off the stronger aftermarket stereo?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/19/2019

    Scott, You're right, factory speaker wiring is usually 18-gauge. It'll work fine for your application.
  • Ronnie from Seguin

    Posted on 4/11/2019

    I have a volfenhag element-5 2600 watt full mosfet monoblock amp wanting to know true rms of it and if it is 1 ohm stable or can power four svc subs two of them are 400 watt rms the other two are 300 watt rms can i run it parallel and be ok

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/13/2019

    Ronnie, If you're referring to Volfenhag's ZX5167, then judging by its 60-A of fusing and its AB Class, I'd say it will put out up to about 420 watts RMS. The online ad I saw for the amp says it is stable for one-ohm operation.
  • David Lersch from Las Vegas

    Posted on 4/9/2019

    Lots of good info here,but I just want to double check. I'm installing a 400W RMS (1 ohm) sub amp and 60W RMS 4 channel amp. I got a dual amplifier wiring kit and the main power cable is 4 gauge, then it splits to 8 gauge at the distribution block. Is the 8 gauge enough to power the sub amp efficiently? It's the kicker 46cxa400.1 class d.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/13/2019

    David, Sounds good to me. Rock on.
  • Thomas from Barstow

    Posted on 4/4/2019

    Hello I bought a JL AUDIO XD600/1 amp for my JL audio 10in W6 sub and a JL Audio XD400/4 for my front and rear speakers. When I bought the amps I picked up an AMP wiring kit for both amp. But now looking at the wiring chart I am not sure if the wiring kit has the right size power cables for my car. The car is a 2015 accord 4 door. I was going to run the 4 gauge power wire from the battery to the trunk then off of the TSPEC power/ fuse block run 4 gauge to the amps. The distance from the fuse block to the amps would be less than 2 feet. But I am worried about the main run from the battery to the truck. Would I need 2 gauge power wire for that and if so does Crutchfield sell it since I bought my multi amp wire kit from them when I purchased my amplifiers?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 4/5/2019

    Thomas, Your question has raised an important issue with the formula used in this article which will lead to a revision in the future. The stated formula is for Class AB amplifiers, which are generally 50% efficient. Your amps are Class D, which are typically 80% efficient. So, in that case, you've got a 75 x 4 amp plus a 600 watter which totals 900W. Instead of 2, you'd multiply that by 1.25, equaling 1125W. Dividing that by 13.8V yields a total draw of 81.5A. In other words, a 4-gauge main power cable will work fine for your amps.
  • Mike C. from Washington, DC

    Posted on 3/27/2019

    This is THE best comments section I have ever seen! I have already posed these questions to the online Crutchfield advisor, who were an EXCELLENT help but I just want to be double sure as I do not want to see my friend's bike burst into flames! I am RE-installing 2 amps (a 600W Kenwood KAC-M3004 and a 400W Clarion XC2410) onto a friend's Victory Cross Country motorcycle; the last install was a firetrap waiting to happen. The Kenwood KAC-M3004 has an 8AWG power wire going to the battery about 60" away. The amp comes with a 30A fuse. Should the inline power fuse also be 30A or higher (currently there is a 60A inline fuse connected)? The same for the Clarion XC2410. It will be mounted about 36" from the battery. It has an external 40A fuse. Should the inline power fuse also be 40A or higher? Also, for the Clarion, the power and ground wires has a pigtail connection which uses 12AWG wires. Should/can the wires stay 12AWG? The previous installer spliced on 8AWG power wire to the 12AWG wire and ran this (UNFUSED!!!) to the battery. I do not trust ANYTHING that he did. Thanks!!!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/27/2019

    Mike, Both of those amps call for 10-gauge power and ground wires in a normal car install. But for a motorcycle, the runs are much shorter so the wires can be smaller. (It's alright to splice larger wire onto a power lead, as long as the connection is tight and secure.) The inline fuse by the battery is there to protect the wire and the vehicle in the event of a short circuit, and its value depends on the size of the wire. For 10-gauge power wires I recommend using 30A fuses.
  • Ryan Quigley from Atlanta

    Posted on 3/23/2019

    I have a JL 12W7 sub (3ohm) with a JL JX1000/1D amp (14.4v - 750W RMS or 12.5v - 700W RMS) and some 4 ohm speakers with a JL JX360/4 amp (14.4v - 70w rms x 4 or 12.5v - 55w rms x 4) I was goin to use 0 guage to run from battery to non fused distro then a 4 guage to the 4 channel and a 0 guage to the mono, I want to know if that is ok to do and if not what should I run? Also what size amp fuses I need and where to place each? And can I use 16 guage wire for speakers as well as sub? Please help me out, thank you.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/23/2019

    Ryan, Run 1/0-gauge wire, with a 150A fuse near the battery, from the battery to a distribution block. You can't run 1/0-gauge wire to that sub amp because its power terminal only accepts wire 4-gauge and smaller. Use 4-gauge for both amps. For safety's sake, you need to install additional fuses, 80A for the JX1000/1 and 50A for the JX360/4, inline on each amp's power wire. It'll be easiest with a fused distribution block.
  • Roger from Grand forks

    Posted on 3/15/2019

    I have 2 12 kicker comp running 300 rms what wire should it take? Currently has a 8

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/15/2019

    Roger, For subwoofers, we recommend using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge speaker wire. If you're asking about power wire, the size of the amp determines that, not the subs.
  • Hank from Harrison ARK

    Posted on 3/13/2019

    I have a one channel 1500watt boss amp a 10inch sub what size of power cable remote cable and ground cable

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/13/2019

    Hank, Boss recommends using 4- or 8-gauge power and ground wires. Remote turn-on leads are usually 18-gauge. Why don't you pick up an amplifier wiring kit and get everything you need for your amp installation, including a fuse and holder, in one package.
  • Sam from Binghamton

    Posted on 3/1/2019

    Hey Buck I just bought a diamond audio de1200.1 d amp to power 2 12 powerbass subs what gauge wire should I use?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 3/1/2019

    Sam, The owner's manual for that amp recommends using 4-gauge power and ground wires.
  • Caelin Lee Santee-Buenger from Eau Claire

    Posted on 2/16/2019

    I will be buying the Rockford fosgate p3d4-12 and running it at about 500-600 Watts RMS in a sealed box. What gauge wire should I buy?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 2/18/2019

    Caelin, We recommend using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wires for subwoofers.
  • Dan

    Posted on 2/8/2019

    Any particular reason Crutchfield recommends 12 gauge speaker wire for JL Audio subwoofers?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 2/9/2019

    Dan, We recommend using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wires for subwoofers to ensure good current flow for efficient power production without loss due to high resistance in the wire.
  • Jason Heinrichs from Caldwell

    Posted on 2/7/2019

    I'm running a RF 75x4 and a 10 yr old RF prime 500.1 @ 1ohm on 2 RF D4 P2's. I don't know what power rating is on the sub amp at 1ohm. How do I find this info, and what gauge power/ground cable should I be running? Currently it's 4g run front to back to distro block and 8g short cables to amps.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 2/9/2019

    Jason, If you're referring to a Rockford Fosgate Prime R500-1 amplifier, it won't work well with a 1-ohm load, and will probably go into protect mode before overheating. The 4-gauge power lead will work fine with your setup.
  • Scott best from Newburgh

    Posted on 1/28/2019

    I have alpine 6 1/2 components from and rear, ss65c. I was thinking about the alpine mrv f300. Will that be ok size wise? I'm going to match up with a jvc double din and possibly a kicker 8 inch powered sub for a little base. Car is small it's a Suzuki sx4.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/29/2019

    Scott, Sounds like a good plan to me.
  • Steve from Peoria

    Posted on 1/24/2019

    With all things equal except amplifiers, what's better for 4 door speakers and a single sub, a single 5 channel amp or a 4 channel + a 1 channel? I'm comparing the Kenwood X801 or a pair of Alpine MRVs 500 single and the 300 4 channel. This is for a front set of 6.5" Focal ISS components, rear 6.5" Focal ISC 2-ways and a single RF P3D4-10 wired at 2 ohms.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/25/2019

    Steve, Either of the amp configurations you mention would make an excellent system. Personally, I'd go with the 5-channel amp because there'd be less wiring involved and less space taken up.
  • Steven from SAN BENITO

    Posted on 1/10/2019

    I just recently purchase an Alpine Mrv-m500 to power my rockford fosgate P2D4 8" Punch P2 500 Watt 4 Ohm DVC. It does sound good but at high volumes the subwoofer goes out and amp stays on. I do have a factory head unit on it. What could cause this?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 1/10/2019

    Steven, It sounds to me that your amp is going into protect mode, protecting itself from the high input you're pushing at it. Lowering the amp gain will probably fix this. If that's not loud for enough you, consider getting a higher-powered amp and sub.
  • Bryan from Bentonville

    Posted on 12/22/2018

    I currently have a 1500 watt vm1500.1 mono amp. I have 2 alpine 12inch sws12d4's. It is currently wired at 4 ohms and I'm trying to wire it at 1 ohm. I have 14 gauge wire coming from the amp. Is it bad if I mix gauge wire as I'm currently out of 14 gauge?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/31/2018

    Brian, For subwoofers, we recommend using 12- to 16-gauge speaker wires, so as long as you use those sizes, you can mix speaker wire of different sizes together in your wiring.
  • Rob from San Jose

    Posted on 12/15/2018

    Hi Buck, impressed with all the knowledge sharing here! Here's a good one for you: Alpine PDX-F6 (150 x 4 RMS = 600W) powering: - Rear hatch: 2 x Hertz 165 XL (100-300W RMS each) - Rear doors: 2 x Alpine Type R 6.5" (100-300W RMS) (Amp (600W) v Speakers (400-1200W)) Alpine PDX-F6 (150x4 RMS) powering: - Rear hatch: 2 x Hertz 165 XL (100-300W RMS each) (Amp (600W) v Speakers (200-600W)) Alpine PDX-F6 (1x600 RMS) powering: - JL Audiob12W6v3-D4 (400-900 RMS) (Amp (600W) v Speakers (400-900W)) Total: 1800W RMS Other niceties: Head unit: Pioneer AVIC8200-NEX Capacitor: 1.5 farads Northstar 31M AMG battery ARB Element fridge ARB Twin Compressor Radar detector Dashcam QUESTIONS: 1) I'd like to the "Big 3" upgrade. Should I use 4/0 gauge? 2) What gauge wires from the battery to a 3-way power distribution block? (I'm thinking 4/0 gauge) 3) What size inline fuse from the battery to the 3-way power distribution block? 400? 4) What gauge wires from the power distribution block to each of the amps? 4 gauge? 5) What gauge speaker wires? Thinking 12 or 14 gauge?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/15/2018

    Rob, Big Three upgrades are usually done using 1/0- or 4-gauge wire. If I understand correctly, you have three amps with a total power rating of 1800 watts RMS. A 1/0-gauge power wire from battery to distribution block will work. Don't forget the fuse near the battery - a 250 to 300-Amp fuse will make it all safe. Then you can run 4-gauge to each amp from the distribution block. And each amp gets a 4-gauge ground. 14- or 16-gauge wire works well for speakers, but if you can fit it in, 12-gauge speaker wire works too.
  • Don from Parma

    Posted on 12/11/2018

    I'm asking just to be on the safe side. I have a pioneer class D, 1 channel amp, 800 watts rms at 1 0hm, I have one 12, 2 ohm dvc wired in parallel so it's 1 ohm. I did the math mentioned above, my result at about 16 feet was 115, so I'm good with a 4 gauge wire, right? Thanks in advance!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/12/2018

    Don, If you're referring to a Pioneer GM-D8601, then yes, it does call for 4-gauge power and ground wires.
  • Anthony whitsey from Vallejo ca

    Posted on 11/29/2018

    Hey buck , I'm running a 2400 watt amplifier for my two 1000 watt subs.... what's the correct amplifier wiring kit I need to run it ?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 12/3/2018

    Anthony, That depends on precisely what amp you have. A Class AB amp capable of that amount of RMS output probably needs 2/0-gauge power and ground leads. A Class D amp could probably get away with 1/0. If you're quoting peak ratings, forget all that, and go with what the manufacturer recommends.
  • Vincent from East Northport

    Posted on 10/11/2018

    I have 2 amps 4k for subs 800 for mids/highs so as far as I understand now my single run 18feet of 1/0 is not delivering enough power to run the amp at 4000 W .?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/12/2018

    Vincent, If your amplifiers can put out a total of 4,800 watts RMS of power, then one 1/0-gauge power and ground wires will not be enough to support them. Can't say anything about it if those ratings you mentioned are actually peak specs.
  • Joe

    Posted on 10/8/2018

    1800 watt amp on 0 gauge wire... what size fuse do I need on 0 gauge

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 10/9/2018

    Joe, A fuse rated for 200A to 300A will safely protect your 1/0-gauge power wire.
  • Joshua Roy C Sanchez from Manila, Philippines

    Posted on 9/21/2018

    Sir, I just want to inquire from you. Is JL Audio 10W3V3-4 subwoofer a good match for Alpine PDX-V9 Amplifier? thanks..

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/21/2018

    Joshua, That 500 watts RMS rated sub will work great with that amp's 500 watts RMS subwoofer output.
  • Jose from Monterey

    Posted on 9/12/2018

    Speakers keep blowing up... 4gauge wiring but I bought the amp kit with 100Amp fuse Installed an alpine mdr M1000 500@4ohm 1000@2ohm Had a 4 ohm dual voice coil 12 sub + to + and - to - =(2ohm?) Also tapped in to the rear sub on my 207 Lexus is250 for the channel going to amp oh, and along with the rca converter Lexus sub->converter->amp It's the amp to strong to handle speakers? Sub was a Audiobahn 12'' 450watt Also had another sub GS Audio 1000 watt max 12'' sub And a JBL 12'' 1000 watt max sub Which all blew up after a couple minutes of music. Started smelling burnt. Manual did say use an 80amp fuse, read your post saying it's ok to go a bit over (remember amp kit I bought came with 100amp fuse). Should I switch to 80amp? How do I wire a 4ohm dvc to 4ohm?,..should I just use one VC (4ohm) so that I don't draw 2ohm from amp? Or just get a 4ohm SVC? Don't knw what's happening? Guess I'll check the RCA converter to make sure wiring is ok? Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated!!!

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 9/13/2018

    Jose, Sending 1000 watts RMS to a subwoofer rated for half that amount will blow the sub, as you've experienced. If you want to use that amplifier, get a subwoofer rated for 750 to 1500 watts RMS and can get wired as a 2-ohm load. Use RMS ratings, never use peak ratings.
  • Jamie from Dirty Myrtle

    Posted on 7/29/2018

    Hi. I'm hooking up an RF 400-4d to 2 sets of RF T1675 components. I'm planning on using 18ga. 9 (8+remote) conductor wire to get back to the front speakers. The amp came in at 601w @ 2 ohms. I figure it's roughly 400w @ 4 ohms. Is 18ga. enough for 100wpc or should I double and run the 9 conductor as if it were a 5 conductor (4+remote)? I'm planning on using crossovers closer to speakers rather than the amp but in the case that I need to keep crossovers in the back, will the wire be suitable for any and all conceivable configurations of this equipment? Chrysler 300...

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/31/2018

    Jamie, For an amplifier, like yours, that will put out up to 75 watts RMS per channel, 18-gauge speaker wire will work just fine.
  • David from Delray

    Posted on 7/10/2018

    Currently have Pioneer GM-D8601 800W powering a Rockford Fosgate Punch P3D2-12 12" Dual 2-ohm and running 4 gauge from battery to the amp. Looking to BUY a Pioneer GM-D8604 to power my already installed Kicker 40CS674 6-3/4" 2-way Speakers (front doors - but want to replace with some components soon) and Polk Audio DXi691 6" x 9" 3-way Speakers (rear deck). Now my questions are: I get back a amperes rate of 174 (rounded up) and drive a Chevy Impala. Would the already ran 4 gauge cover my power draw or jumping to 2 gauge for sure? 2nd Question: I would then take the already ran 4 gauge and use a T-Spec DB-1424 to handle the ground distro and power distro (as its not a fused disto)?? 3rd: If above I have wrong - options? 4th: Can 4 gauge be used for a 2 battery set up or going to a HO Alt seem more feasible?

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 7/11/2018

    David, This wire chart uses a formula that's conservative and results in safe applications for every kind of amplifier. Your amplifiers use Class D technology which is more efficient and would draw more like 109-A at full-tilt. That means you can use 4-gauge wire throughout your installation.
  • Gabriel from Abingdon

    Posted on 6/5/2018

    Hi, english is not my first language so I'm strugling a little bit to figure which wiring kit I should look for, could you give me a hand? I've got a "Edge twin Subwoofer" it is two 12" speakers with 900w each, it has and built in amp which is an "ED7300". The power is 600w RMS and the peak is 1800w. Thank you in advance Buck. Gabriel.

    Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    on 6/5/2018

    Gabriel, That powered subwoofer will need a 4-gauge (AWG) power and ground wiring kit.
  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/24/2018

    Jose, I can only assume those huge power specs you quote are peak wattage ratings and useless for planning out a system. Without knowing precisely what amps you're referring to, we can't help you with advice. If you want a question answered about a system, you must identify the gear by brand names and model numbers so we can get the right information to you.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/23/2018

    Nate, Check all the connections. Wires that aren't fastened securely often heat up due to the intermittent contacts and sparks. 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.

  • Jose from LAWRENCE

    Posted on 5/22/2018

    Hi my is Jose I want to know what gauge should I use for my system cause I keep blowing my power line fuse I have a 2500 watt amp for my subs and a 1000 watt for my mids

  • Nate from Grand Rapids

    Posted on 5/17/2018

    Alright so i have 2 alpine swr-1242d subs that are hooked up at 1 ohm in a Belva BBX212BK box and the amp i have is Rockford Fosgate R1200-1D. Im running 0 gauge ground and power wire with a 150 watt fuse to my amp and i think 12 or 16 gauge speaker from my amp to my subs but for some reason only my negative speaker wire that goes from my amp to subs keeps burning and i dont know why. Should i just get bigger speaker wires or is there something more that im missing?

  • Christopher Lee Hane from St paul

    Posted on 4/19/2018

    Why is it that all your recommendations exceed what is considered safe in 310.15 b 16. I don't know much about sizing wiring for adio and am interested in reading more about it. Could you link me some good information. If not no worries thanks. I'm probably asking a lot

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/13/2018

    Cliff, The wire recommendations on our product pages come from each amplifier manufacturer's recommendations. They base their recommendations using worst-case scenarios - long wire runs. You are correct that you can use smaller wires for shorter runs.

  • Cliff from San Diego

    Posted on 4/12/2018

    Are the recommendations on the amp pages based off the longest length wire runs in the chart? For instance, the amps I am looking at say 4 gauge recommended, but I'm doing the math here and finding 8 gauge to work. For instance, a 4x100 rms amp gets me just under 60 amperes, which at a ten foot or under power wire length should be okay per the chart. Am I doing the math right?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/9/2018

    Rich, Although we usually recommend using thicker wire with a 100 watts per channel amp, you shouldn't have any issues using 18-gauge speaker wiring.

  • Rich from Plymouth

    Posted on 4/8/2018

    I have four speakers all Kickers that have 60 watts rms. I'm putting in a Pioneer amp that will put out 100 watts to each one. Question is will 18 gauge speaker wire be ok for this setup? I don't think I'll be cranking it up to high so I'm hoping I can get by with it. Thanks!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/9/2018

    Sheri, It sounds like your wiring kit is too small for that amp. If it's a Kicker KXA2400.1, then it requires 1/0 gauge power and ground wires and a 200-Amp fuse.

  • Sheri from Duluth

    Posted on 3/9/2018

    Im having an issue with my fuse blowing in the wiring kit for the positive cable... i have 1600W wiring kit a 2400w kicker and 2 2000w Orion comps subs. What do i need to wire these correctly

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/5/2018

    Logan, Without knowing what size wire you presently have, I have no way of knowing if it needs upgrading or not. I do know that a 600 watts RMS amplifier should use 4-gauge power and ground wires.

  • logan from spring hill Kansas

    Posted on 3/5/2018

    I have a 300-watt amp now and want to get a 600-watt amp. will I need a new power and ground wire for the 600-watt amp to work

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/14/2018

    John, According to my figures and the stats I can find, those three amplifiers will together try to pull as much as 207A from the electrical system, and 2-gauge wire may be a bit too small for that, unless it's a short run. The rest of your plan sounds fine.

  • John from Portland

    Posted on 2/14/2018

    Buck, I'm trying to verify my installation configuration. I will have three amps. KAC-X542 rated at 4 x 60 Watts RMS @ 4 ohms & 14.4 volts. 4 speakers are rated at 60 Watts @ 4 ohm KAC-522 rated at 2 x 125 Watts RMS @ 4 ohms & 14.4 volts. 2 speakers are rated at 100 watts @ 4 ohms R750-1D rated at 1 x 750 Watts RMS @ 1 ohm & 14.4 volts. 1 sub (p3d2-12) rated at 600 watts DVC @ 2 ohms I have a 2 guage wire from the battery with a 200 amp breaker. I plan to have a distribution block with 60 amp fuses going to each amp. I plan to use 8 gauge wire from the block to the amp. Have I sized everything appropriately? Thanks!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/27/2018

    Philip, Using the formula in the article, we figure your 40 watts RMS x 4 amplifier will draw 23.2A. Looking at the chart, we see that at 17-feet, you'd need to change an 8-gauge power wire to a 6- or 4-gauge wire at 50A. Subtracting your amp's draw leaves you with 26.8A in reserve. Now we reverse the article's formula to translate that 26.8A to 185 watts RMS. Sounds like you have room to add a bunch of bass.

  • Philip seitz from Oklahoma city

    Posted on 1/26/2018

    Hey, so I've been researching my wire, and it turns out it is oxygen free copper(OFC) so would you be able to shoot over the calculations again if I was running 4x40 watt RMS in a 8 gauge OFC at 17ft To see how big of a powered sub I could add to this power wire

  • Philip seitz from Oklahoma city

    Posted on 1/22/2018

    Thank you

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/22/2018

    Philip, This chart is relevant for copper wire, not aluminum wire - we'll have to point that out. Copper-clad aluminum (CCA) wire has about 1.5 times the resistance as copper, and therefore can carry only about 65% of the current as a same size copper wire. To use the chart, you'd figure it for a current draw 150% larger than usual. So, according to my calculations, you can add an amp of up to about 70 watts RMS in power without needing to upgrade the power wire.

  • Philip seitz from Oklahoma city

    Posted on 1/20/2018

    Hello, i was wanting to make sure my math was correct, I have an old system I installed , a Rockford fosgate 4-channel rated at 40-watts RMS at 4ohms and the power is a 17ft 8 gauge in (what I believe to be) aluminum wire... I am running on this amp 2x50 watt RMS kicker door speakers, and 2x 50 watt RMS tactile bass transducers.. My question is: is If was to add a powered subwoofer to my system what would be the RMS I would need to keep it at to safely keep the 8 gauge as my power wire and just put a distribution block on it? These are the potential powered subs I am looking at that (according to may math) will work with 8 gauge and my other amp.. Basspro JBL SW (125 RMS) Pioneer TS WX120A (50 Watts rms) Kenwood KSC SW11 (75 RMS) If I could go bigger and still "play it safe" Then I will definitely like to do more watts

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/16/2018

    Mark, You can leave your 4-gauge main power, from battery to distribution block, as is, when you upgrade the amp as planned. You are correct that the short run from that amp to the distribution block should be upgraded to 4-gauge wire.

  • Mark from Rio Rancho

    Posted on 1/15/2018

    I am currently running two amps. I have I Rockford p300x2 running my components up front and an Alpine mrp m350 running my subs. I currently run a 4 gauge cable about 17 ft. to a distribution block and then run 8 gauge power wires to each amp. I'm thinking about getting a new amp for my subs, the JL Audio JX500/1, but it shows to need a dedicated 4gauge power wire. Can I run a 4 gauge wire from the distribution block to the amp without changing any of the other cables or do I need to now run a 2 gauge from the battery to the distribution block?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/26/2017

    Maciazka, In order to ensure that your amplifier can receive all the power necessary for top performance, use the amp's highest RMS rating to figure what size power and ground wire to use. That JL Audio amplifier you mention calls for 4-gauge power and ground cables whether you consult the owner's manual or this wire gauge chart.

  • Maciazka from EYOTA

    Posted on 12/20/2017

    Sorry, I didn't read through all of the comments. But I'm a little confused on the total RMS thing. I know what RMS is vs peak and blah blah blah. My confusion is in understanding the ohm you should look at for this RMS rating. For instance a JL JX500 is rated 300w @ 4ohms but 500 @ 2ohms. Am I looking at the highest it can do no matter what the ohm rating is? For instance if it's a 1ohm stable amp, then that is the wattage I want to use? Sorry for the long-winded question. I guess for a monoblock amp, the question should be as follows: Do I want to use the highest RMS rating that I find (determined by whether the amp is 4ohm stable, 2ohm stable, or 1ohm stable)? Thanks.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/5/2017

    Rob, You should never use peak power ratings when you plan out a system. That amplifier actually puts out 150 watts RMS x 2 at 4 ohms, 225 watts RMS x 2 at 2 ohms, and 450 watts RMS x 1 bridged at 4 ohms. Normally, the amp requires 4-gauge power and ground wiring, but for your short runs 8-gauge or 10-gauge will work as well.

  • Rob from Indianapolis, IN

    Posted on 12/5/2017

    I have a Pioneer GM-A5602 amplifier. This things has a max power of 900 watts at 4 ohms bridged, 300 watts at 4 ohms and 450 watts at 2 ohms. I am running 4 ohm subs. It is a 2 channel amp. My battery is in my trunk, so I only need to run the cable like 4 feet. So I should go with 4 gauge cable? Thanks for your help.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/4/2017

    Austin, For your high-power application I recommend using 14-, 12-, or even 10-gauge wire if it fits.

  • Austin

    Posted on 12/3/2017

    i plan on running a 2000w rms sundown audio amp to power 2 sa-12 subwoofers, with each sub getting 1000w each what gauge speaker wire should i use for this set up? Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/9/2017

    Radha, Using the formula in the article, (65 watts x 2 channels) + 190watts = 320 watts x 2 (amp inefficiency) = 620 watts/13.8 volts = 46.4 amperes. Looking at the chart, a 10' - 13' run will need 8-gauge wiring.

  • Radha from Sydney

    Posted on 10/6/2017

    Hi there, I have a Hertz HCP4 amp and I am planning to run to run 3 Ch: 65 W x 2 (4 O) front speakers + 190 W x 1 (4 O) for subwoofer at approx 10 to 13 ft of cabling for my Toyota Landcruiser 200 series. What AWG would i need for this setup. Thanking you from Australia

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/5/2017

    Ari, That amp should work for those subs just fine, wired like this diagram. You won't know whether or not you'll need a second battery until after the sub amp installation you experience light dimming during big bass hits.

  • Ari from SUNDERLAND

    Posted on 8/4/2017

    Okay so Im planning on getting a "Pair of SA-12 Sundown Audio 12" 750W Dual 4-Ohm SA Series" and I'm wondering if a "SUNDOWN AUDIO SAE-1500D 1500W RMS MONOBLOCK CLASS D" Amplifier will work with this set up. *Further, would I need to get an extra battery to power this set up?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/26/2017

    Joshua, Nothing is bridged in your system. Adjacent channels of a multi-channel amplifier can get bridged together, but that isn't applicable for your 1-channel amp. Your two 12" subwoofers are wired together to present a total impedance of 4 ohms with a total power rating of 600 watts RMS. The ratings of your subwoofers have no bearing at all on what size power and ground wire for your amplifier to use. An amplifier's expected output power determines what size wire to use. 4-gauge will work fine for that amp.

  • joshua from Danville

    Posted on 7/26/2017

    Okay. I searched high and low for an equation that made sense and I think with your formula I've figured it out. I have a Soundstream Rubicon Nano 3000 watt D rated single channel. It's RMS reading for the application in which I'd like to use it is listed as 600w RMS x1 channel at 4 ohms which matches exactly the reading on my subwoofer setup. The subs are Dual Electronics Illuminite (2) 12" and are listed as 600w RMS x1 channel at 4 ohms. According to your formula I take the 600 watts of RMS and because it's a single channel I simply double that number. After doubling the 600 watts of RMS power and getting 1200w RMS I then divide that by 13.8 to achieve my total of 86.95 amperes. Assuming I've used the correct RMS numbers, my amp has several ratings but this matched my subs numbers, I'd be safe using 4 gauge power and grounding wires. Straight line from my battery to the sub enclosure in the trunk is about 9 feet but I've yet to run it through a firewall and under the carpet so I'll be using closer to 13-15 feet. My amp also had an RMS output of 1200w x 1channel at 4ohms but states bridged. Am I correct in assuming that the formula I used in the top is correct because it matches the power of my subs or is it considered bridged because there are two subs in the enclosure?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/21/2017

    Raimondas, You should never even consider using peak ratings when designing a system - use RMS ratings only. That amplifier can put out 1200 watts RMS into a 1-ohm load. It's owner's manual calls for 4-gauge power and ground wiring, but 2-gauge will work safely if it fits. For your application I'd recommend using a 125-amp inline fuse on the main power wire. As for a capacitor, you don't need one unless your headlights dim a little on loud bass beats. If, after putting your system to work, you do suffer that problem, see Headlights Dim When the Music Plays for possible solutions, which include installing a cap.

  • Raimondas from Rotherham

    Posted on 7/20/2017

    Hey, I have alpine SWR 12d2 3000w peak, thats 1000rms with pioneer GM -D9601 amp is 2400w. Bought 2 gauge wires for amp. They will be ok? Now not sure about power capacitor wich one I have to buy, 3 farad will be enought? And not sure about amp power fuse how big need? I Will be verry thankful if someon help me. Thank you

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/25/2017

    Lucas, Those two amps will require a 1/0-gauge dual amp wiring kit like Kicker's PKD1. After you get your amps up and running is the time to determine if the electrical system needs upgrading or not.

  • Lucas from Lynnwood

    Posted on 6/24/2017

    Ok so i have 2x hi fonics titan 1000.1 amps (hi fonics txi 1008d) which being class D and hi fonics i assume the 1,000 watt rating is fairly accurate. These two 1,000 watt amps will be powering 2 12" first gen kicker solo baric L7's in a ported kicker made box, and just paired with the factory sound system. These will be going in a 07 acura TL type s. With that set up im wondering if ill need a power cap (would rather not), or upgraded battery/alternator, etc. If i can get away with out anything other then good gauge wire. I would rather save my money, but not sure what would be necessary for this set up.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/23/2017

    Davey, That amplifier needs 4-gauge power and ground wires and a 100-amp fuse on the positive wire near the battery.

  • Davey Breedlove from Frederick

    Posted on 6/23/2017

    I have a Rockford Fosgate T500/1bd amp and will be running it in parallel to power 2 JL subs. Would I need a 4 or 8 gauge wire kit?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/19/2017

    Kevin, Those two amplifiers will be fine sharing a single 4-gauge power wire. A great all-in-one solution in your case would be to get a dual amp wiring kit, like Crutchfield's CKD4. This wiring kit has everything you need: inline fuse for the main power cable, fused distribution block for the two amps, and even a ground block so you can ground your two amps to the same spot.

  • Kevin from Thornton,co

    Posted on 6/18/2017

    Dual amp set up. I have a Kicker CX300.1 and KX400.4. If it maters CX300.1 with 2subs Kicker DC12, KX400.4 with 2 KSS650 and 2KSC650. What size amp fuse do I want to use? What size power and ground wire should I use? Distribution blocks on negative and positive or just positive or non? If distribution block what wire size before and after blocks. Do I need a capacitor?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/6/2017

    Will, The fact that your amplifier is blowing 300-amp fuses should tell you that something is wrong. Perhaps the amplifier is not stable at 0.5 ohms - I see no evidence that it is - and tries to pull more current than the fuses can bear. There's no reason to fuse a ground wire if its corresponding positive wire is fused.

  • will from phoenix

    Posted on 6/5/2017

    hi there buck, its will with the scv7500. i currently have 300 amp fuses in it that keep blowing (even though connections are good). my math was saying around 225 amp fuses as well but id blow them almost instantly upon any clipping indication. im wired at 0.5 ohm load currently and the amp handles fine at that ohm load. so do you suggest 225 amp fuses on 6 runs? or 3 runs?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/5/2017

    Will, That amplifier uses three sets of power and ground cables. Each of the positive power leads should be fused with a 225-amp fuse to protect the wires and your car from catching on fire in the case of a short circuit, and support that huge output.

  • will from phoenix

    Posted on 6/4/2017

    hi there buck, im running a scv 7500 (clamping 9.5k rms at 13.8v) with 6 1/0 inputs (3 of each), and i was curious as to if i should be using 370 amp fuses or run duel inputs into each one being a total of 12 inputs (6 each) and have them run 300 amp fuses each. im not exactly sure how to go about that but if you could help please :) thanks so much!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/16/2017

    Matt, If the wattage you quote is watts RMS, then 8-gauge power and ground wires will work in your application. 125 watts RMS is a bit much for thin factory wiring. We recommend installing new 18-, 16-, or 14-gauge speaker wires.

  • Matt from St. Peter's

    Posted on 5/16/2017

    Mr. Pomerantz, I just ordered speakers that are 100w continuous rms/200w peak and will be running an amp at 4ohm 125w per channel (4 chanels). If my battery is about 4 foot away from the amp, will 8 gauge be efficient? Also will I need to replace the factory speaker wire for these more powerful speakers or will I be able to re-use them and just purchase an amp wire kit to install my new amp? I bought all the equipment, just need to figure out all the wiring I need to buy. Thanks!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/4/2017

    Jacub, That amplifier's Owner's Manual calls for 8-gauge power and ground wiring. The number of subs the amp is powering is irrelevant to its maximum potential current draw.

  • Jacub from Missouri

    Posted on 4/4/2017

    So if it's a monoblock power acoustik RZ1-2300D amp I'm unsure the size wire I have run it's rated at 1600w but I also bought a different wire gauge that's 4g but it's 2800w but it's smaller than the wire I have now would you recommend using the thicker wire and saving the 4g for future use I'm pushing 1400w at 2-ohms ATM to one speaker but I'm about to add another speaker so would you reccomend recalculating my amperes even though it's a 1-channel amp or keep it the same calculations since I'm gonna be running 2 speakers at 4-ohms. The amp runs 900w rms at 4-ohms not sure if I should double that showing there is 2 speakers would they be pulling 900w each or together?

  • doug from phoenix AZ

    Posted on 3/28/2017

    Mr. Pomerantz, your articles are pure gold. That is all I wanted to say. Thank you for such clear and excellent writing.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/26/2017

    Shawn, It would depend on whether those watts are RMS or peak. If you really do have an amp that can put out 2500 watts RMS, 14- or 12-gauge speaker wire will work just fine.

  • Shawn from Providence

    Posted on 3/25/2017

    What gauge speaker wire would you run from a 2500 watt amp?

  • Justin from Irvine, CA

    Posted on 3/16/2017

    THIS is a proper write up for wiring car audio. I did my homework in high school so I wouldn't catch someones car on fire. But this was an amazing refresher! Thanks Buck!!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/9/2017

    Steve, For that short of a run, an 8-gauge kit will work just fine.

  • Steve from Joliet

    Posted on 3/8/2017

    Can I use a 8 gauge wiring kit for for the kicker zx550.3? Will be running Rockford fosgate prime 5.25 in doors, one JBL GT5-15 in trunk. Run from battery to amp less than 4 feet away, battery is under back seat of a 2000 Buick lesabre.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/1/2017

    Luis, Your math is correct. If the specs are correct, I don't think there's a single alternator in existence that can handle that much current, so running multiple alternators plus multiple batteries sounds like your solution. And running multiple power wires for your amps as well. The reason the Wire Gauge Chart doesn't show more is that systems larger than 300 amperes are rare and usually involve using multiple power wires, batteries, and high-output alternators. We try to make our charts and articles work for the majority of our customers.

  • Luis Guzman from New Britain

    Posted on 2/27/2017

    Quick question just to male sure my math is correct. I'm planning on running 2 rockford fosgate power 1000a2 @2ohms bridged (1100rms×1 per), Rockford Fosgate power 800a2 @2ohms stereo (400rms×2) & another rockford fosgate power 800a2 @4ohms stereo (200×2rms) in an excursion (20ft long bumper to bumper). Using your equation 1100+1100+800+400=3400×2=6800÷13.8=492.75 1st; is this correct? 2nd; there's nothing higher than 300 so?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/22/2017

    Kelcey, If you expect a current draw of 289 amperes, you'll need to use 1/0-gauge wire everywhere in the power circuit, not just in one section.

  • Kelcey from Fort Leonard Wood

    Posted on 2/21/2017

    By my calculations I need 1/0 gauge wire because my number was 289. Could I run 4 gauge from my alternator to my second battery then 0 to my capacitor and amp from the battery ?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/16/2017

    Zach, Crutchfield recommends using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wires for subwoofers.

  • Zach from Ocean springs

    Posted on 2/16/2017

    I am running two 12's rms 700 watts each and 1200 peak. I am running off a mono block amp into one input inside my box then it runs from one speaker to the next. What gauge speaker wire should I use for this setup?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/15/2017

    Katlego, I suspect those huge power ratings are exaggerations, otherwise I know of no wire size that can support such massive current draw. I also don't know what car stereo equipment or even what model vehicles are available in your country. An online search ought to bring up at least one car stereo dealership somewhere near you. Sorry I can't help.

  • katlego from sasolburg

    Posted on 2/15/2017

    Good day I just bought a 7000w Targa sub and 10000w amp,so need to make a good sound what cables,fuses and capacitors should I buy in order to get the best sound and good power so my sound can be clear and good

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/27/2017

    Cody, That amp and sub should work together just fine - just be sure to set the amp gain so no distortion ever plays. If the amplifier's power consumption is beyond the capacity of your automotive electrical system, you may require an electrical upgrade that could include a high-output alternator, a second battery, or both. I'm not sure what it's tuned to, but a Memphis Audio 15-PE1X15V2 ported enclosure might work for you and your sub.

  • cody from Plymouth

    Posted on 1/26/2017

    So I am looking at an Ascendant Audio Havoc 15 inch 1500W, dual 2 ohm, will wire in parallel to produce 1 ohm, planning on using AMPERE AUDIO AA-2000.1D amp; single channel, 1-ohm stable @ 2 KW. Firstly is this a good match up? Secondly, what are your recommendations in regards to vehicular upgrades, if necessary? All is stock as of now. (Vehicle is 2005 Toyota Rav4) more thing, I planned on a ported box tuned to 32 hz, again, any recommendations...I love SQ, but I do like volume as well. Input from someone as knowledgeable as yourself would be a blessing, thank you!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/2/2017

    Leon, Your 4-gauge power wire and 100-amp fuse will work fine and using 8-gauge power wire from the distribution block to each of those amps will be okay. The Planet Audio amp has an onboard fuse so it wouldn't need a fuse after the distribution block. The Rockford Fosgate amp, however, will require a 50-amp fuse between the block and amp in order to be safe.

  • Leon from Duluth

    Posted on 1/1/2017

    I have 2amps I'm installing sub amp is R500X1D prime and my doors is is planet audio RC800.4 I ruining 4 gauge from battery to distribution block would it be ok to run 8gauge from block to amps runs from block to amps is less than 2'' also do I need to fuse each amp from distribution block to amp on my 4 gauge to battery is 100 is this sufficient or do I need go larger

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/12/2016

    Chris, Going by those "power cube" specs you provided, the T1000-1bdCP will be a better match for those two subs. Going by what Rockford Fosgate lists as their nominal specs, the T1500-1bdCP would be better. In any case, either amp will work well with those subs. Subs don't pull power from amplifiers - they take it - so a subwoofer can never overburden an amplifier.

  • Chris from Texarkana

    Posted on 12/12/2016

    Buck, I recently purchased 2 of the Rockford TOd412 subs, I will wire them for 1 ohm impedance to the amp, according to the Rockford power cube test the Power series t1000 at 1ohm will provide 1390 watts of power and the t1500 power series amp would do 1712 watts of power. The RF T0d412 is rated at 700rms/1400 peak, my question is which amp would be more sufficient to power this pair of subs? I'm afraid if I get the t1000 running those subs at 1ohm would overburden the amp, on the other hand the t1500 would be 125 watts over their rims.thanks for your help

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/1/2016

    Nathan, Subwoofers do not produce power (watts), they produce sound and heat. Amplifiers produce power. If you have an amplifier that can produce 450 watts RMS (important: RMS, not max or peak) it will require 4-gauge power and ground wiring. As for the speaker wire, between the amp and sub, 12-gauge or 14-gauge will do.

  • Nathan Johnson from Clewiston

    Posted on 11/30/2016

    If I'm running a 12 inch sub that produces 400 watt RMS and 1500 watts Peak with a 450 watt amp. Will 8 gauge wire be ok?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/21/2016

    Gavin, I suspect that 2400 watts spec is a peak rating and not useful for planning an installation - I know of no 2-channel amp that can put out 1200 watts RMS per channel. But if you really do have an amp that can put out a total of 2400 watts RMS, then it'll need 1/0-gauge power wiring if it's a Class D amp, and 2/0 wiring if it's Class AB. If you want a more accurate answer to your question, you'll need to identify your gear by brand names and model numbers.

  • Gavin from Mountain ranch

    Posted on 10/20/2016

    I have a 2400 watt 2 channel amp for 15"s .what gauge power wire should I use.I currently have a 6awg wire that enough

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/14/2016

    Shawn, Using that over-sized copper-clad aluminum wire should handle those amps' current draw just fine. Just be aware that CCA corrodes pretty quickly when exposed to the elements so be sure to protect and coat all connections.

  • Shawn from Orange

    Posted on 10/13/2016

    I am running an Alpine PDR F50 to my JL components and a PDR M65 @ 2 ohms + JL line driver to a SWR 12D4. I have some 1/0 power wire that is CCA instead of OFC. Am I ok using the cheaper wire in a larger size such as this? Is the chart you provide for OFC or CCA wire? Will be running about 10-12' of the CCA wire to a dist. block and then 4 ga OFC wire to the amps.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/10/2016

    Pankaj, Most stock vehicle system have about 15 watts RMS output per channel and use 18-gauge (1.02 mm diameter) wiring. If you plan on adding an amplifier with a total output of 110 watts RMS, then you will need a 10-gauge (2.59 mm diameter) or a 12-gauge (2.05 mm diameter) amp wiring kit, depending on the length of your installation. A good kit will include the proper fuse, for the safety of your car and system.

  • Pankaj

    Posted on 10/9/2016

    How can I know the power and speaker cable size (awg) of my stock car wiring to its connector? Is a Ford Aspire 2016 (Indian Model) Is there commonly used stock wire sizes in cars? I plan to use a 110W RMS amp (without any head unit) and I doubt I need additional power wiring. But want to be sure instead of planning to fry my car wiring.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/7/2016

    Chris, I don't think you've used the correct values for your amplifiers' RMS outputs. If your Orion CO800.1 is to run two 4-ohm subs, it'll probably see a 2-ohm total impedance load and could put out 400 watts RMS. That Rockford Fosgate amp will put out a total of 100 watts RM (50 x 2) to two 4-ohm speakers. This makes your amps' potential total output power 620 watts RMS, and potential power draw of 90A. For a 12-foot install, 4-gauge wire is good. As for the rest of the power and ground wiring, I'd use what each amplifier's specs call for, in this case, 8-gauge wire all around. Each amp will require at least that size for its ground, and you may as well match that for the short power wire from the amp to the distribution block. But 4-gauge will work fine, if it fits.

  • Chris from Boise

    Posted on 10/6/2016

    I am getting ready to install 3 amps in my 97 Ford Explorer. I am going to be running an Orion Cobalt 8001 to drive a pair of 10" 4 ohm subs. An Orion Cobalt 3002 to drive a pair of 4 ohm components in the rear doors and a Rockford Fosgate P200-2 to drive a pair of 4 ohm components in the front doors. According to my calculations, 300+120+148=568x2=1136 divided by 13.8=82.32 total amp draw. At a distance of 12 ft. it shows I should run 6g or 4g. Since I already have 4g on hand, I'm going to run the 4g. My question is, should I run 4g off the distribution block to each of the amps as well as from the battery to the distribution block?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/15/2016

    Brandon, Ordinarily I'd recommend using 12- to 16-gauge speaker wire for subwoofers, but you have something special (huge power) and I think 10-gauge or 12-gauge speaker wire will work best. That amplifier calls for three pairs of 1/0-gauge power and ground wires, in order to feed it power correctly. Sundown recommends a high output alternator and additional battery for this amp, and goes on to say "a factory electrical system is NOT capable of supporting [this amp's] current draw demands."

  • Brandon from Dallas

    Posted on 7/15/2016

    What kind of wires do I need for 2 sundown Zv5 15s 2000w rms rated, and and an Ns-1 6500 watt rms amplifier? I'm going to get an XS battery but I'm still deciding which I should get

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/11/2016

    George, Looking at the owner's manual for those amps, I see the source of the confusion. Alpine says one thing on page 7, another on page 8, and then reverts to what it said on page 7 on page 9. I'll throw another curve your way. For consumer safety reasons, this article uses calculations based on a typical Class AB amplifier, which are usually about 50% efficient. Your Alpine amps are Class D, which typically run at 75% to 80% efficiency, and together won't draw more than about 65 amperes from the electrical system. You'll be fine running 4-gauge wire from the battery to a distribution block for those two amplifiers.

  • George from Concord

    Posted on 7/10/2016

    Hey Buck, hoping you can help clarify something for me. I'm installing an Alpine MRV-M500 that will be driving 2 JL Audio 10's wired in parallel to present 2 ohms to the amp, so 500 Watts RMS. I'll also be running an Alpine MRV-F300 for my front and rear channels, which will be 50 Watts RMS x4 channels so 200 Watts RMS. Based on the formula above, I'm looking at total current draw of 101.4 amps which means that for up to a 16' foot run, I should be fine with 4 gauge from the battery to the distribution block. My issue is, Alpine is recommending 2 or 1/0 AWG for any run over 3 feet for the MRV-M500 and 4 or 2 AWG for longer than 3 foot runs feeding the MRV-F300. Based on the chart and formula above, I would think I should be able to run 4 AWG to the distribution block, then feed 4 AWG to the MRV-M500 and 8 AWG to the MRV-F300 but that contradicts what Alpine has in their manual. Which one is correct in this scenario?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/24/2016

    Derek, Like this article says, for a subwoofer, use 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge speaker wires. A single voice coil (SVC) 4-ohm sub (if that is what you have) gets wired to a 2-channel amplifier like this. That amp's specs call for 4-gauge power and ground wiring.

  • Derek from San Jose

    Posted on 6/23/2016

    I am trying to figure out the correct gauge wire to connect a single 4 ohm 400rms subwoofer to a crunch gpv1100.2 amplifer that has these specs 2 x 250 W at 4 Ohms, 2 x 500 W at 2 Ohms, 1 x 1000 W at 4 Ohms Maxx Power. I am not sure how to wire the speaker to set the correct ohms to make sure it will run properly with the amplifier I have, and I am not sure what gauge i need .

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/22/2016

    Ahmed, Crutchfield recommends using 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge speaker wires in all car audio applications - so yes, 12-gauge wire will be safe to use. Remember, in the American Wire Gauge (AWG) system, the smaller the gauge, the larger the wire. Using the metric system, 12-gauge wire (excluding the insulation) measures 2.05 mm in diameter and 3.3 square mm in cross sectional area.

  • Ahmed from Sydney

    Posted on 6/21/2016

    Hi There, I have 12 AWG speaker wire, is it safe to connect these to my sound system: AMP: JL Audio XD700/5 v2 Components: Jl Audio ZR650CSI Components Sub: JL Audio 10W3V3-2 Just wondering if this will cause any harm to my sound system

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/9/2016

    Shaun, The owner's manual for the Polk Audio PA D4000.4 amplifier recommends using 4-gauge power and ground wires. For your two amps, 4-gauge wire should work fine between the battery and a distribution block, especially if the run is shorter than 13 feet.


    Posted on 6/9/2016

    Hello Buck, I have POLK PA D4000(125RMS @4OHM) and JVC KS-AX3101D (400RMS @2OHM). So, as per the calculation 900RMSx2=1800/13.8=130. As per the chart, I may need to go ahead with 4 gauge considering the length of wire. But the recommended gauge for the POLK amp seems to be 0 gauge. Can you please help me with which one should I go ahead with? Thanks so much!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/8/2016

    Jerry, Try wiring your subs to that amp like this.

  • Jerry from Poteau

    Posted on 6/8/2016

    Thanks for your reply buck. I guess I need to rewire the subs to maybe 4 or 8 ohms then. Ill get right on that as I have not pushed it in the slightest yet. And thanks for your help. I used to be good at this stuff when I was 16 but now? geeze.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/7/2016

    JD, Perhaps this amplifier wiring diagram will help. It sounds like you're using a bridged 2-channel amp for your sub, your 4-channel amp has pass-through RCA connections providing input for the sub amp, and you don't use a capacitor - which is all fine. What's not-so fine is that four 8-ohm subs wired together in parallel form a 2-ohm total load, and your 2-channel amp isn't supposed to handle that properly in bridged mode. For power, you have a 50 watts RMS x 4 amp plus a 125 watts RMS x 2 amp, for a total potential output of 450 watts RMS. Using the formula (65A current draw) and chart, you can see that an 8-ga or 4-ga main power wire from battery to distribution block will work, depending on the length of the wire run.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/7/2016

    Jimmy, Even if that amp were to put out a total of 403 watts RMS, drawing 58.4 amperes of current, an 8-gauge wire will handle its power needs just fine, especially through a short, 7-foot run.

  • JD from Poteau

    Posted on 6/6/2016

    Hello Buck. I will just try to describe how I hooked up my little old school set up and see if you see any issues. As I am kinda new at this at the ripe age of 54. 4 gauge from battery to fuse block @12" to Rockford Fosgate 400 A4 and a 4 gauge ground to body. I had to reduce this down with a block at the amp because the amp only takes 8 ga wire in the terminals Amp is rated at rms50watts @ 4 ohms or 100 @ 2ohm and thats hooked up to 4 channels of 1ch each l &right to rms100watt 4 ohms mids and 2 tweets in front and 2 100amp 4x7 4 ohms in rear doors on the other 2 remaining channels I then used passed through to a second Rockford Fosgate 250a2 amp in back (about 4 ft) with 8 gauge power wire. I bridged both channels into one and use 4 -8inch 8ohm subs wired parrallel to I think 2 ohms(might be 4ohm). I used all 12guage speaker wire throughout. Did I get it right or need to change a wire size? I think with both amps I am about 625watts total and they are about 57% & 59% efficient. This gets confusing to me sometimes. Stock battery, no capacitor and a 105amp stock generator.

  • Jimmy from Glendale

    Posted on 6/6/2016

    I bought the RF Prime 300x4 amp and the Kicker 8AWG kit (OFC wire) and when I received the amp, it had a sheet from RF inside saying it actually tested at 403 watts. Now I am concerned I need the 4AWG kit rather than the 8AWG. I am running the power wire approximately 7 feet.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/6/2016

    James, Without knowing the exact models of your amps, I can't tell for sure, but you'll probably be alright using 1/0-gauge wire from the battery to a distribution block. From there, 4-gauge to each amp ought to work.

  • james from Romance

    Posted on 6/4/2016

    I have a 4000 watt rms massive audio amp and a 800watt pb 4 channel for mid and highs 300 amp alternator and 1 100ahr battery what Guage do I need to use battery is in trunk next to big amp 0 Guage running from alt to battery 17 ft mid amp is running of starter batt 4 Guage wire

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/18/2016

    Mike, If you are replacing the receiver in your car you need a wiring harness to connect between the new receiver's harness-plug and your vehicle's harness-plug - there should be no need to run any wire to the fuse box. If you had purchased your receiver from Crutchfield, the correct harness for your car and receiver would have been included for free or at a good discount. Getting all the right parts for an installation is one of the benefits of shopping at Crutchfield.

  • Mike Greenwood from Bryant

    Posted on 5/18/2016

    My receiver block has like 18 gauge wire. Can I use 14 or 12 gauge wire to take it to the fuse box or should I just by some 18 gauge wire and keep it the same? I'm just hooking up a basic system with 6 x 9 speakers for now.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/9/2016

    George, The formula here uses a typical AB amplifier's 50% efficiency in order to play it safe with all amplifiers. If you want to be more precise while dealing with Class D amps, you can use an estimated efficiency as high as 80%. So, the formula becomes: total RMS wattage divided by 0.8 efficiency divided by 13.8 volts equals current draw in amperes.

  • George from Gallatin

    Posted on 5/8/2016

    How does the calculation change with D class amps, for example, If I run a Pioneer GM-D860, what is the calculation change then? Do you just go one step down or is there a conventional position for the conversion number? (ie. instead of 100%, 50% for the addition.)

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/2/2016

    Jone, This article is about what size wire to use for power and ground connections for amplifiers. The ratings of the speakers and subwoofers are irrelevant to that discussion - only the amplifiers' total RMS wattage output ratings are. For that, start with the amplifiers' brand names and model number numbers and do a web search for the specs.

  • Jone Yohannes from Beltsville

    Posted on 4/30/2016

    Hello, I have infinity primus 6.5 and 6x9 as well as a infinity 1260 subwoofer. I think my math might be off but I arrived at 460 amps which isn't listed. Could you please advise? Thanks.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 4/26/2016

    Colin, If those huge power ratings you quote are truly RMS power ratings, then I doubt any aftermarket alternator and battery setup will safely support the system. But I suspect those numbers are peak, or max power ratings, which are useless for system-design. Always use RMS ratings and the results will match real world performance.

  • Colin Neighbers from St Augustine

    Posted on 4/26/2016

    So I have a 400 watt two channel amp for my mids, 300 watt two channel for my highs, and I will be getting a 2400 watt mono for my subs. I plan on getting a new alternator, around the 220-270 amperage range, and maybe even a second 12 volt battery. I know that I also need to do the big 3 upgrade and I'd like to use 1/0 for that. What do I need to do? Still sort of just getting into car audio. I want to be able to push my subs to their full 2400 watt capacity without causing damage to my alt or battery(ies). Any help and suggestions would be very much appreciated. Thanks.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/28/2016

    Chris, If your subwoofer is set up as a 2-ohm load and your amplifier is a Rockford Fosgate Punch 500 watts RMS rated mono amp, then it should be sending up to 500 watts RMS to the sub. If that's not enough bass for you, then you should look into getting a larger amp and more subs.

  • Chris from Texarkana

    Posted on 3/26/2016

    I am pushing a Rockford T0 4ohm with a Rockford punch 500 mono, the speaker is rated 600 rms, the speaker is wired to 2ohms so I think the speaker is getting 250-300 watts.Should I go with a bigger amp? And if I did would I really notice the difference? Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/17/2016

    Christopher, Like the chart indicates, what size wire to use is entirely dependent on the power of the amplifier and the length of the wire run. If your amplifier requires a 2-gauge power wire, using a larger, 0-gauge wire for ground won't hurt anything.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/17/2016

    DJ, Like I said before, you'll be safe running 4-gauge power wire from the battery to distribution block and 8-gauge wires to each amp. Don't forget to install a 100 to 150 amp in-line fuse near the battery.

  • Christopher Ramirez from La puente

    Posted on 3/17/2016

    Please i need a response to this question. For my amp i am using 2 gauge power wire and 0 gauge ground because i had it laying around. Will this affect anything?

  • DJ from Newport News

    Posted on 3/16/2016

    Buck, my apologies. Front the battery to the seats I'm guessing 3 to 5ft but no more than 5ft. And from amp to amp no more than 2ft. I don't have exact measurments.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/16/2016

    Clay, For power wires of the same size, I don't think the fineness and amount of stranding makes any difference at all. However, you should be aware that some brands of wire don't meet the same standards and over-state the size of the conducting wire inside the insulating jacket.

  • Clay from Gallatin

    Posted on 3/15/2016

    Is there a Diffrence in sound quality between using thhn 8awg vs fine stranded car audio 8awg wire? Other than being flexible,Are there any other advantages of using fine stranded cable? Thank you!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/14/2016

    DJ, You didn't say how long each wire run will be, but I think you'll be safe running 4-gauge power wire from the battery to distribution block and 8-gauge wires to each amp. Don't forget to install a 100 to 150 amp in-line fuse near the battery.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/14/2016

    Jose, It seems to me that you've got it all worked out correctly. Rock on.

  • DJ from Newport News

    Posted on 3/14/2016

    I'm running two apms. One under the passenger front seat & the other under the driver seat. One amp is a Power Acoustic GT4-900. That's a 900w 4ch amp. 4 x 75w @ 4 ohm 4 x 95w @ 2 ohm 2 x 190w @ 4 ohm bridged I'll be running (4) 6.5" Power Acoustik mid Bass drivers that are 4 ohm 300w peak each & 100w RMS. The second amp is a Memphis Audio 16-MC1000D mono block RMS Power (4 ohms) 300 watts x 1 channel RMS Power (2 ohms) 600 watts x 1 channel RMS Power (1 ohm) 1100 watts x 1 channel Peak Power Output 2200 watts I'll be running 2 shallow mount 12" SD-2 Sundown Audio 2ohm rated @ 500w RMS. Also, will be running a distribution block. Any help on what gauge wire to run from battery to block & block to amps??

  • Jose from Va Beach

    Posted on 3/14/2016

    Im planning on running a dual amp system an Alpine MRV-F300 (4x50rms @4ohm) and a Rockford Fosqate 1,200 watt amp (1200rms @1ohm). My question is will a 4 gauge power wire at 6 feet hooked up to a distribution box and splitting with 8 gauge going to the 1200 watt amp at 2 feet and 8 gauge 5 feet going to the Alpine MRV-F300 amp will be sufficient? if not, what do I need to change?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 3/4/2016

    Brett, This Class D amplifier is much more efficient than a typical AB amp, and so you will be fine using 8-gauge power and ground cables for it. Of course there's no harm in using larger wire if there's room.

  • Brett

    Posted on 3/3/2016

    I have a Kenwood KAC-8104D Mono subwoofer amplifier rated at 300 watts RMS x 1 at 4 ohms (500 watts x 1 at 2 ohms). It recommends 8-gauge power and ground leads but if I did the calculation right I need 4-gauge because I will be wiring it for 2 ohms. Im using this amp to power a JL Audio 12W6v2-D4. Should I use 8-gauge like it recommends or bump up to 4? -Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/12/2016

    Greg, Not knowing exactly to which amplifier or subwoofers you're referring make it impossible to give advice on how to wire them together. If you want a question answered about your system, you must identify your equipment by brand names and model numbers. When designing and putting together a system, use RMS ratings only. As for the remote turn-on lead, you can run it from your receiver, to one amplifier, and then to a second one, but that's about it. Any more amps and you would need a relay to deliver switched power for turning them on. I think your last question is about the pair of preamp outputs on one of your amplifiers. You indeed can use those for RCA connection for your second amps' input.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/12/2016

    Mike, 4-gauge power and ground wires will work fine for that amplifier, although its proximity to the battery and Class D operation should allow 8-gauge to work as well. There is never a problem running a speaker or sub with less power than its rating, as long as you don't send it over-driven distorted signals attempting to get more volume out of it than the amp can deliver.

  • Greg from Clarion

    Posted on 2/11/2016

    Greg again!! I also forgot to ask about the REM wire from my head unit and the RCA cables!!! Someone said I can't run a memory wire from my head unit and split it to both amps cause I'll burn out my turn on circuit in my head unit? True? If so what else can you do? Also the RCA cables from the head unit the amps do have input and out (slave and master) so I can run the RCA from my head unit to the input (master) to one amp then with a second set of RCA cables run from output to the input (slave) on the second amp? Correct?? I believe that is it! If anyone could answer these it would be so greatly appreciated!!! Thanks!!

  • Greg from Clarion

    Posted on 2/11/2016

    Someone please help me!!!!!!!!! Okay listen I have 2 RE subs running at 2400 rms together! I can't find a single amp to run them unless I pay $1,400 which I refuse to do for an amp! So here is the deal guys I haven't found one good solid source of people for help!! Cruthfield has amazing diagrams I follow for everything so I'm praying there is help! I will be running 2 amps! I found an amp that is 6000 Watts (means absolutely nothing) 3000 rms but CEA rating at 1000 rms wired to 2 ohm which I am the subs are 2 ohm! So I need 2 amps I'm gonna run together so I get true 1000 rms cea rating for each sub! Question! What size power wire kit do I need?? With this chart I get confused on what rms power to go by the 3000 or 1000???? Which makes a huge difference! Would I go with a 0 gauge kit or 2-4??? Ill be running a fuse from the battery to a fused distrubtion block to run the amps so I need to know what size wire and also what would be the best fuse size??? Sorry so long just wanna be detailed in case someone can give me a straight answer which I've had absolutely no luck on!!!! If you can please give me any of this information it would be truely amazing!!! Thanks!!!!!!

  • Mike from Salem , nh

    Posted on 2/11/2016

    Hi , I am installing a Alpine CDE - HD149BT Receiver Alpine PDX - V9 5 Channel Pre Amp ------- 100 watts x4 + 500 watts rms for sub (2) Kicker 500 watts rms each subwoofers @4ohms (4) Kicker 6x9 150 rms each 3 way speakers @4ohms It's being installed in a new 2015 Silverado , so I am isolating this new system from the factory installed system. I have 2 questions for you Hector. I added up the watts for what gauge of wire for the battery and for the block . I came up with 4 gauge wire. I know you said going thicker is better. The amp is 6 feet from the battery. My second question for you would be , the two 12'' subs I bought are higher in watts rms vs my Alpine 5 channel amp , is that a problem , because I was thinking if I have to add a sub amp later , it could handle the rms . Thank you

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/9/2016

    Juan, In your case, 4-gauge power wire from the battery to a distribution block will work fine for those two amps. Make sure you fuse it near the battery with an 80-A fuse to protect it and your car. Since those amplifiers do not have onboard fuses, I'd use a fused distribution block for protection. The 600/4's specs call for a 50-A fuse while the 250/1 needs a 30-A fuse. If shorter than 4-feet, the wires from the distribution block to each amp could be 10-gauge, but 8-gauge will work just fine. You'll want to use 8-gauge for each amp's ground as well.

  • Juan from Orange County

    Posted on 2/9/2016

    Hello so if I'm planning on installing a jl audio hd 600/4 and a jl audio 250/1 slash and both combined are 850 rms and according to the equation above I'm pulling about 123 amps. So would i be OK if I run 4 gauge fused main wire from the battery to a distribution block with another set of wires from the distribution block to the amplifiers? And if so what size fuse at the main wire? should I get fused or unfused distribution block? And last should I use 4 or 8 gauge wire from the distribution block to amps? Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/8/2016

    Chris, When you replace or run new speaker wiring from an amplifier's output, we recommend using 18-, 16-, or 14-gauge wires for speakers, and 16-, 14-, or 12-gauge wires for subwoofers.

  • Chris from San Gabriel Valley

    Posted on 2/6/2016

    Heyy I am running 2 kicker cs 4 ohm 100 rms each and hifonics be500.4 what kind of speaker wire should i use and going to use kicker Ks 6x9 in the rear deck i think they will be 150 rms but will wire them to 2 ohms to get more power or bridge ...soo what gauge speaker wire should i use?? Im planning to re wire everything!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/3/2016

    Jeff, Sounds like you have your power wire requirements covered. As for a remote bass knob, that amplifier has no remote capability, but the AudioControl does offer the ACR-2 remote as an option for the LCQ-1.

  • Jeff from Gonzales, LA

    Posted on 2/2/2016

    The MTX TE504amp has (2) 25A fuses, the JBL GTX500 amp has (2) 25A fuses. The LCQ-1 says to use 2A fuse because it only draws 350mA. I have decided to not hardwire the power inverter. I will just get a different one that plugs into cigarette lighter. So now i should only need 4AWG lead wire with a 125A fuse at battery according to chart. Correct? Im calculating 360W+425W = 785W (x2) = 1570W / 13.8V = 113.76A. The MTX amp is AB class and JBL is D class. Also i want to hookup a remote bass volume knob. Should i hook one up to JBL GTX500 amp or hook one up to the audio control LCQ-1? Thanks for your input Buck.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 2/2/2016

    Jeff, We can use the formula in the article to determine what you need. We treat the inverter just as if it was another amplifier, taking power from the vehicle system and outputting it to a device. So, you have an amp that can put out up to 360 watts RMS, one that can put out 425 watts, and another that can put out 400. That totals 1185 watts RMS. Multiply that by two and then divide by 13.8, and it indicates that when all the equipment gets powered to the top total RMS output, it will draw 172 amperes from the electrical system. Looking that up on the chart tells us that a 2-gauge or 1/0-gauge wire from the battery to a distribution block will work. Fuse the power cable as close to the battery as possible, using a fuse sized to protect the wire, usually 250-A, but any size from 175-A to 300-A will do. 8-gauge wiring should work for the short runs from the distribution block to each powered device. You would need to fuse those wires or use a fused distribution block if the amps and inverter have no onboard fuses of their own. I would not even consider getting a capacitor unless, after the whole installation was done, the headlights dim when the music hits hard. The rule of thumb is to use one Farad of capacitance for every 1,000 watts RMS of output power the system has.

  • Jeff from Gonzales, LA

    Posted on 2/2/2016

    I have JBL 6X9's in front doors and JBL 6.5's in rear doors. These speakers are 2.3 ohm. They will be powered by MTX TE404 rated 65Wx4 at 4ohm stereo or 100Wx4 at 2 ohm stereo. So im guessing the door speakers will see about 90W each. So lets say 360W. Then i will have JBL GTX500 which is 350Wx1 at 4 ohms or 500Wx1 at 2 ohms. This will be pushing JL Audio 8w7 ported stealthbox which is 3 ohm. So lets say i split the difference and sub will see 425W. Each amp has 50A total on fuses. So 100A total. I also will have audio control LCQ1 to hook up and i want to hard wire a 400W power inverter. Question 1: What size cable should i use from battery to distribution block? Then from distribution block to amps, inverter and LCQ1. Question 2: What size fuse should I use at battery? Should i also have fuses at distribution block? Question 3: Should I consider usage of an external capacitor for the mono amp or is it unnecessary? If yes what size. Thanks for taking my questions.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/29/2016

    DeAndre, It's impossible to troubleshoot your system without knowing exactly what subwoofer you have nor how it's wired to your amp. The fact that you say you've blown an amplifier and now they're running hot tells me that you're trying to drive an impedance load lower than what your amplifier can handle. For starters, your amps probably need 2-gauge or 1/0-gauge power wiring from the battery to the distribution block in order to draw enough current to operate properly. If you bought your gear from Crutchfield, you could call Tech Support for free help with 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.

  • DeAndre Wilson from Buffalo

    Posted on 1/29/2016

    In my Lincoln mkz I'm running a aux to rca cable from my fiio m3 high resolution mp3 player to a distribution block in the trunk its 4 ga wire with a 150 amp fuse. From the block I have 4 ga going to an audiopipe apsm 1500 at 1 ohm doing about 1400 watts rms and from the block 8 ga going to an autotek 1000.4 with 4, 4 ohm door speakers. Sub amp has no external fusing and 4 channel has 30 amp fuse. I have fried my 2nd amplifier on my kicker l7 15 inch (powerbass asa 1000.1 first). I pulled over yesterday and both amps where scorching hot to the touch and now the sub amp is stuck in protect......any thoughts?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/26/2016

    Matt, If your battery alone can handle your vehicle's headlights and loud music at the same time but your alternator can't, it shows that there is probably something wrong with your alternator/charging system. You should have it checked out by a qualified auto mechanic.

  • Matt

    Posted on 1/25/2016

    All power/ground connections are clean and tight. The amp is grounded to the back of the cab.-amp is mounted to the cab behind the rear seat- Just to add, with the truck running the lights will dim. If i turn the engine off and have the key to the acc. position the light do not dim. Not sure why that would be? I hate to admit this but, the 6 gauge amp wiring is Scosche brand from Wal-Mart. Thanks

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/25/2016

    Matt, An amplifier that size should not overpower your electrical system. The fact that you measured over 14 volts when the lights dim show that it's not your charging system that's at fault. Check out this article for help with light-dimming. Start by checking all power and ground connections. You also may find that that amp will do better with 4-gauge power and ground wiring.

  • Matt

    Posted on 1/24/2016

    I have a 2006 Silverado it has a 145 amp alternator. I have a Kenwood KDC-X399 headunit- one Kicker 40TCWRT104 subwoofer hooked to a Planet Audio P300.3 Amp (specs, bridged power 4 ohms 600 watts/outout power 2 ohms 302 watts). The subwoofer is bridged-subwoofer is hooked to left channel negative-right channel positive. I have 6 gauge power and ground wire, the length of the power wire run is around 10-11 feet . My headlighs and dash light dim when the bass hits. I have tried to "tune" the headlight dim out using 0 for bass setting and the gain on the amp turned to 50% and subwoofer setting 0-5. Seems no matter what setting, if the bass hits to where the music sounds good the lights dim. While the lights dim I hooked a multimeter to the battery, and the voltage bounces from 14v to 14.8 volts. I installed a 160 amp alternator and still have the dimming lights. The battery is a ACDelco 600CCA, and currently the truck starts without any problems at 0 to -5 degrees so I think the battery is good. Any suggestions?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/22/2016

    Jesus, 8-gauge power and ground cables will work for that amp, although it wouldn't hurt to use 4-gauge instead, to ensure that any upgrades to your system can be accommodated.

  • Jesus

    Posted on 1/22/2016

    I have a 1,200W AP09512 SDX amplifier with 5 channels. I want to install it but i don't know what gauge to get.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/6/2016

    Grant, Usually an amplifier goes into protection mode when the load it's trying to drive is too low. What that means is the total impedance of the subs, in ohms, is lower than what the amplifier can handle. Without knowing exactly what amplifier or subwoofers you have make it impossible to give advice on how to wire them together. If you want a question answered about your system, you should identify your equipment by brand names and model numbers.

  • Grant Cobbs from Raleigh, NC

    Posted on 1/6/2016

    Hello, im running 2 860 watt subs on my 600 watt amp, my friend has the same setup and its working fine, i dont know if its my wiring or what but my amp goes into power protect mode. (Im pretty new to subs, so, bear with me)

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 1/4/2016

    Cedrick, If you are asking about the wires from the amplifier output to the subwoofer, any size wire from 12-gauge down to 16-gauge will work fine. If you're asking about the amplifier's power and ground wiring, 8-gauge is what its specs call for.

  • Cedrick d spearman from Memphis tn

    Posted on 1/3/2016

    I've sound ordnance b24 and I want to hook it up to a boss riot 1100 class a/b mono block,what gauge of wiring I need?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/28/2015

    Benn, Any size wire from 12-gauge down to 16-gauge will work fine for a subwoofer.

  • Benn from Toowoomba

    Posted on 12/26/2015

    What gauge wire would I need from an amp to a 1600w speaker?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/22/2015

    Tanner, You are right to question that 600W max specification. When you go to Boss Audio's website and look up that amplifier's specs it states that the R3002 amp can put out 113 watts RMS x 2 at 4 ohms, 225 watts RMS x 2 at 2 ohms, and 450 watts RMS x 1 bridged at 4 ohms. Using the formula in this article and the amp's highest total RMS output (450 times 2 divided by 13.8) yields a potential current draw of 65 amperes. Checking the chart shows that you should use 4- or 8-gauge wire depending on the length of your install. The amplifier's owner's manual (available on Boss' website) says to use 8-gauge or larger wire. It never hurts to get power and ground cabling larger than your immediate needs so that if you were to upgrade your system later, you'll be prepared.

  • Tanner Christensen from Casper Wyoming

    Posted on 12/21/2015

    This makes no sence to me, I have a Boss R3002 600 watt amp 2 channel what is the RMS and how do I find it

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/17/2015

    Jim, Older cars like yours have solid metal bodies and frames that make good ground connections to the electrical system. However, it won't hurt anything to run a dedicated ground wire to the battery's negative terminal.

  • Jim Davis from El Centro

    Posted on 12/16/2015

    I' m wiring a 1970 Dodge Challenger for two smaller amps (320W RMS & 250W RMS) using 4ga cable according to the chart on this site. For added peace of mind I want to run a 4ga ground cable from the battery to the amps in the trunk. Are there any concerns with wiring things this way, or is it just good overkill?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/12/2015

    Louis, The in-line fuse on a power cable is there to protect the cable, your car, and you from catching fire in the event of a short circuit. Its size depends on the size and composition wire used and what the manufacturer says will work. It'd probably be a lot easier for you to pick out an appropriate amp wiring kit, which fits your amp, and comes with the matching fuse, hardware, and accessories you'll need for your amp's power and ground wiring.

  • Louis from Montreal

    Posted on 12/11/2015

    Hi M. Pomerantz . I just bought a used amp in mint condition, it's an Alpine MRV- F450 . On Crutchfield website they recommends 8 size for this amplifier. Knowing that I do not intend to add another amplifier in the future and that all the speakers (4 x 6in + 12in sub) are at 4ohm , is size 8 will be sufficient for the amplifier . Also, what fuse resistance should i use near the battery pole. Thank you!

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 12/10/2015

    Maxwell, In this case, yes, you should figure each amplifier's power and ground cable requirements separately. Don't forget to fuse both power wires near the battery.

  • Maxwell

    Posted on 12/10/2015

    What if I have 2 amps and they are both connected to the battery through separate power cables? Would I calculate each one and see what gauge wire I need for each power cable for each amp?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 11/30/2015

    Wayne, This article's about sizing amplifier power and ground wiring. Wires that connect an amplifier's output to a subwoofer should be anywhere from 16- to 12-gauge in size.

  • Wayne from Convent

    Posted on 11/24/2015

    I have a 500watt Sony Xplod 4/3 channel (high/low) XM-504Z amp! I need to know the wiring size to connect one 10in Sony explode speaker 1100watts

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/23/2015

    Innes, Although it sounds like you may improve your amps' performance by up grading to 1/0-gauge power wiring, I don't think your problem has anything at all to do with your power cables. What you describe can occur when the input signals you're trying to combine to your sub amp's RCA connections are 180-degrees out of phase with one another, adding together destructively, resulting in no signal. In other words, one pair of the high-level leads of your Audiobank high to low converter for the bass amp has its polarity (positive and negative wires) reversed. Rewiring either one of pairs should solve the problem.

  • Innes from Kathu

    Posted on 10/23/2015

    Good morning guys I have a question I just recently installed a system in my 2015 Vw Polo 1.2tsi hatchback I'm using the standard head unit so I used 2 audiobank high to low converters for the 2 amplifiers I am using. I'm using a 4 gauge wiring kit from Starsound audio the car is roughly 11ft long the first amplifier for my subwoofer is a TG-10000d1 Targa monoblock amplifier rated to 2500 watts RMS at 1ohm stable the subwoofer is a Targa TG-VM7000 dual 2ohm voice coils rated to 2500watts RMS 10inch the second amplifier is a XTC audio da brat series 3000 watt 4 channel amplifier which I'm using to run the standard door speakers and works perfectly but my problem is the mono amplifier if I plug in both RCA leads into the amplifier it totally stops playing the woofer the woofer is wired to 1ohm so that it can run if I remove 1 of the RCA leads it starts playing again is my 4gauge wiring enough or should I go to 0gauge because I veel it should be playing louder and stronger could you please give me advice as what to do

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/15/2015

    Ryan, If your Kenwood amplifier is a KAC-5204, with a large "350W" printed on its label, it can put out two channels of 60 watts RMS each to your speakers; that's 120 watts RMS total. Add that to the 250 watts RMS that the Kicker can output and the total is 370. Using the formula in the article: 370 times 2 divided by 13.8 equals 53.62 Amperes. Plugging that number into the chart at 7-10 foot length shows that you can use 8-gauge power wire from your battery to a distribution block. As for your subs, you should put them in enclosures sized according to what the manufacturer recommends. Go to Kicker's website and look up the specifications of your particular subwoofers. There you'll find the maximum and minimum recommended sizes for both sealed and ported enclosures. Which of those you may prefer depends on your taste in bass. Check out Sealed or Ported for help deciding.

  • Ryan from norco

    Posted on 10/14/2015

    Hey Buck, I just recently installed my system in my extra cab Toyota pickup. I have two 12 inch kicker comp subs. I purchased a kicker dx 250.1 amplifier to run my subs with. I also have a a 350 watt ken wood amplifier running to two 6x9 speakers in the truck. I have about 7 feet of wire from the batter to the amplifiers. I have a friend with the Same system as mine and the only difference is wire size. Tried doing the math but got really lost in the mumbl jumbo any well you could help determine wire size for me? Also with two twelve inch kicker comps would you recommend a large or small box? Sealed or ported? The subs sound crisp but I'm looking for more low end hard bass.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Randy, That 1/0-gauge wire may be a little overkill, but it certainly will help with power flow. It sounds like you have a good grip on what will work and work safely.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Valente, Go ahead and replace your power and ground cables with true 4-gauge or 2-gauge wires and go ahead and use a circuit breaker if you want. But please, make sure all the connections are tight and secure and won't work loose and arc and possibly burn your car up.

  • Randy from Missouri City

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Hey Buck, Just wanted to verify my setup is correct. I am running two amps; Pioneer GM-D8604 and a GM-D9601. I am running Arc Audio xRi Components rated at 120w rms @ 4ohms and coaxials at 40w RMS @ 4ohms as well as an Alpine Type R 10" (4 ohm wired into 2ohm) with a rate of 800w RMS @ 2ohm. Now this may be overkill but I went ahead and redid all my wiring as I did not know much about the different types of wires 3 years ago when I installed all this. New setup is 1/0 (1') battery wire with a 200 amp ANL fuse running into a distribution block then to both a 4 gauge w/ 150 amp ANL fuse to the D9601 and an 8 gauge w/ 60 amp inline fuse to the D8604 as per manufacturer specs. On top of that the amps also have 3 (40 amp) fuses and 2 (30 amp) fuses plugged into them. Now my car was made with the battery located in the rear of the car. So my runs are not longer than 8' being the longest which is the 4 gauge for the sub amp. Thank you for your time.

  • Valente Villicana from Vista

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    I should have made myself clear. The fuse did pop and its been popping ever since. Im running a cheap 4 gauge wire to the trunk. Its not real awg wire thats why I figured I should go bigger with a 2 gauge to the distribution block and from there keep the 4 gauge to both amps. I have the 500/1 Jl Audio Slash series amp and the alpine MRP F 300. Can I run a circuit breaker instead of fuse?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Valente, I will repeat what I said before: you are operating under dangerous conditions. If the amps you have are the Alpine MRV-F300 and the JL Audio JX500/1D then you don't need a main power cable larger than 4-gauge, you need to clean up and tighten the power connections you already have. The inline power fuse near the battery should be rated for 80- to 100-amps.

  • Valente Villicana from Vista

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Thanks for responding. I have a 500/1 Jl Audio Monoblock with a Jl Audio 10inch W7. And an alpine 300watts.4 channel..i was thinking of running 2 or 0 gauge from the battery to the distribution block in the trunk and from there keeping my true 4 gauge wires to the amp. As far as fuse I was thinking of replacing it with an 100 amp circuit breaker. What do u think? I feel like my 4 gauge power wire running out the battery is too small for all the current im drawing from both amps thats why it melted.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/12/2015

    Valente, What you describe is a very dangerous situation that needs immediate attention, before your car burns to the ground. If your power wire has melted without popping the fuse it means there's a loose connection that's arcing and putting out sparks and tremendous amounts of heat. You need to replace, repair, or tighten all the power connections, especially the inline fuse holder. Blowing fuses and melting wires are clues that something is very wrong with your wiring. True 4-gauge power wiring will probably be adequate, but I can't be sure without knowing the exact models of your amplifiers.

  • Valente Villicana from Vista

    Posted on 10/10/2015

    I have a 2001 toyota corolla. I installed a no name brand 4 gauge power wire from the battery to my stinger non fused distribution block in the trunk. From there I have two 4 gauge wires my amps. I have an alpine 300.4ch and a 500.1 jl audio powering a 10inch w7. I also have AudioControl Epicenter hooked up. I recently melted my power wire right at the inline AGU fuse connector. So now Im debating whether using 2 gauge or 0 gauge from th battery to the trunk and using a 100 amp circuit breaker or clip style 100 amp fuse block. What do you suggest I do as far as install and gauge size? My downfall to my install is when I blow a fuse I lose all sound since Im only using one power wire with a distribution block for both amps. Thanks in advance

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/4/2015

    Mark, Without verifying those astronomical power specs or knowing the Class or fuse compliment of the amplifier make it difficult if not impossible to help determine what wire for you to use. If your amp is Class D, then 1/0-gauge wire should work. If it's an AB amp, then maybe 2/0-gauge cables will be needed. It could be that the power ratings were exaggerated by the manufacturer, a common occurrence, and you won't need cables that large at all.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/4/2015

    Brandon, According to Crutchfield's Tech Support, either system of determining the proper size fuse to use in your power line will work. Pick the smallest number - in your case, 200-amps. There is a danger, however, in using the sum of the amplifiers' fuse ratings for the main fuse: when the power wire itself is too small. In your case, for instance, if you were to put in a 4-gauge power cable and then used a 200-amp fuse by the battery, the 4-gauge wire would catch on fire in the event of a short before the 200-amp fuse could blow.

  • Mark Ford II from Montezuma

    Posted on 10/4/2015

    I'm running a 3400 watt amp with three 4 ohm 12's. The manufacturer claims 2550 x 1 rms @ 1 ohm, 1275 ×1 @ 2 ohms, and 638 x 1 @ 4 ohms. It's a 2014 impreza hatchback (on the small side), so just with an estimated wire distance, can you help me out here?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/1/2015

    Brandon, It does look like you've uncovered a contradiction in my own advice. Although I think the information in the Car Amplifier FAQ may need updating, I am going to ask our Tech Department for their definitive answer. Stand by.

  • Brandon from seattle

    Posted on 10/1/2015

    Thanks for the information, Buck. Unfortunately, you guys have some conflicting information right here on your website. Here is a quote from your amp article where the question is asked "what size fuse do I need for my amp"? [Link to Car amplifier FAQ] Q: How big should the fuse be? A: If you're installing just one amplifier, the fuse at the battery should simply match or slightly exceed the fuse rating of the amplifier itself. Some amps don't come with onboard fuses - you have to find their fuse ratings in their owner's manuals. If you're installing two or more amplifiers, just add their fuse ratings together and install a fuse rated roughly equal to this sum. Generally, it's better to go slightly higher than lower, but a margin of five amperes is acceptable. Say you have three amplifiers, two with fuse ratings of 20 amps each and one with a fuse rating of 25 amps. In this case, you can safely go with either a 60 or 70 amp fuse. Of course, if your system is powerful enough to demand that you install a heavy duty fuse, it's important that your power and ground wire be of an appropriately heavy gauge as well."

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 10/1/2015

    Brandon, The inline fuse on the power cable near the battery is there to protect you and your vehicle from a fire in the event of a short circuit. The size of the fuse depends only on the size of the power wire. Of the1/0-gauge amp wiring kits Crutchfield sells, one manufacturer includes a 300-amp fuse, and another includes a 250-amp fuse. Your 200-amp fuse will work as well. If your amps have onboard fuses, no other fuses will be necessary. If your amplifiers do not have onboard fuses, you should fuse each power line after the distribution block with a fuse as near as possible to the specified size.

  • Brandon from Seattle

    Posted on 10/1/2015

    Great article. I think I have this all correct in my head, but i'm not sure. I am now getting conflicting information out there on the WWW in car audio forums. Maybe you can clarify? I am running 2 amps, and driving all 4ohm speakers. One amp is 100x2 rms, and the other is 300x2 rms. The smaller amps says it has a fuse rating of 50a. The larger says it has a fuse rating of 140a. The primary power wire I have run, is a 0 gauge, and I Just need to figure out what size ANL fuse to put in the fuse box. From what I have read here on crutchfield, I simply add the fuse ratings together to arrive at my total, for the power wire up at the battery... which is 190amps. I can't buy a 190a ANL, so a 200 is what I am planning on putting in. Then between the distribution block and each amp, I have planned a 40amp ANL for the smaller, and a 150 ANL for the larger. Correct?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/30/2015

    Andrew, Welcome to the world of car amplifier marketing, where the rating printed on the amp is often an exaggeration.

  • Andrew from muncie

    Posted on 9/29/2015

    my amp is a mon block capable of 2000watts rms but the power input on the amp only takes 4 guage. makes no sense to me

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/25/2015

    Walker, If you want to run those two amplifiers at the same time you'll need to use 1/0-gauge wire from the battery to a distribution block, otherwise they won't be able to draw full power. From there you should be okay with short runs of 8-gauge. As for speakers, 14- or 16-gauge wires are fine.

  • Walker J from Kelowna

    Posted on 9/25/2015

    Hey Crutchfield, thank you for all the awesome information. I am installing a Hertz HDP4 amp, it is a full 17 Ft cord length right now. I have 4 gauge Stinger True-Spec, so I think I'm good there. However if I adder another 600 rms Hertz subwoofer, would I still be okay? I'll distribute the 4 gauge at 17 ft, then run 8 gauge to the seperate amps. We can assume my new amp at 600w rms will be Class A/B. My other question for you guys is this, what gauge wire do I need for my Hertz 165XL door speakers? They run 150 rms. Thanks so much for your guys' time and efforts.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/22/2015

    James, I can't tell, by your description, how many batteries or amplifiers you have in your system, nor what exactly each amp is, so I can't help you with your wiring. Whatever you do, make sure to install an inline fuse on each power cable within a few inches of each battery.

  • James Shanley from Ballwin

    Posted on 9/21/2015

    Ok I will list components and see what you think. I currently have a run of 2 gauge welding cable ran to the rear kinetik 2000 blue series. From that battery I have the same 2 gauge wire to the amps is this good enough? Second I just bought another t1000.1 and was wondering if the kinetic 2000 is enough and is the 2 gauge from the front battery good enough? I have a stock 130 amp alternator by the way

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/19/2015

    Haden, If you're referring to the Pioneer GM-D9601 amplifier, 4-gauge will do. But that Planet Audio amp will need 1/0-gauge power and ground wiring.

  • Haden wilson from Eatonton

    Posted on 9/18/2015

    I have 2 alpine type r 10's that are dual 2 ohm voice cool subwoofers run off a pioneer 2400 watt amp. Would 4 gauge be efficient enough to power the amp? Secondly I am thinking about swapping the 2400 to the planet audio 5000.1 to run at 2 ohms to send roughly 1250 watts to each sub, will I have to swap the wiring out to a larger/thicker wire?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/8/2015

    Greg, The in-line fuse on the power cable is there to protect the wire and your vehicle, so you need to know the size of the wire in order to know what size fuse to use. You should return that power wire to your stereo shop and get a proper amplifier wiring kit with cable and fuse that match your amp. A 4-gauge kit will probably work.

  • greg street from oronogo mo.

    Posted on 9/7/2015

    i have an older 600 watt alpine mono amp. and i was wondering what size fuse should i use on the power wire. im just running a type r 12 in. comp sub. alpine also i am using the biggest power wire the stereo shop had which is big but not sure what gauge it was. its clear coating on wire

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 9/5/2015

    Ryan, What you describe is often caused by a loose connection of a power wire. And it sounds like that connection is at the fuse holder. When an electrical connection becomes intermittent, cutting in and out, the resistance to the current flow creates great heat, sometimes even sparks - a dangerous condition. You need to tighten all your power and ground wire connections. Maybe you even need to replace that fuse holder too.

  • Ryan Reeves from Galveston, TX

    Posted on 9/4/2015

    Mr. Pomerantz, I have installed a Rockford Fosgate R1200-1D pushing two Rockford Fosgate P3D4-12's wired at 1 ohm. I recently "melted" the power wire where it connects at the fuse holder. Not between the battery and fuse holder. But after the fuse holder leading out towards the amp. The fuse holder showed signs of heat and the wire in the clamping part/set screw of the holder was brittle and broken. The wire is true AWG A spec size 4 gauge for power and ground (Lightining Audio LA-4i Amp Kit). Could you please point me in the direction of potential causes? I'm positive that I have a good "solid" ground with all paint removed. Do I need to drop down to a -0- gauge kit, or larger if necessary? Thanks in advance for your wisdom.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/31/2015

    Josh, The owner's manual for that amplifier recommends either 8- or 4-gauge power and ground wiring. I'd go with the 4-gauge to ensure power delivery. Use whatever size in-line fuse that comes with your wiring kit. That fuse protects the wire and your car. The fuse on the amp protects the amp.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/31/2015

    Ryan, The owner's guide for your amplifier recommends 4-gauge power and ground wiring.

  • Josh Holohan from Isle of Man

    Posted on 8/30/2015

    hi there i have a set of vibe qb69 at 200w rms each and a sony explode 12 inch sub at 350 watts rms and was going to buy an amp which is 1000watts rms (Lanzar HTG447) would a 8 guage wiring kit fitted with a 60A fuse be okay to power it the amp is fitted with 2 25A fuses Many thanks Josh

  • Ryan from edmond

    Posted on 8/29/2015

    Hello, I am purchasing a new setup and I am interested in setting them up myself. see if my research is in balance. I purchased 2 Pioneer TS-W3003D4 Champion PRO 2000 Watt MAX 12" Dual 4 Ohm subwoofer + Pioneer GM Digital Series GM-D9601 2400 Watt Monoblock Class D Car Amplifier. Based on the chart I stand within the 4 gauge or 2 gauge wiring for my subaru wrx.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/27/2015

    Frank, If you're asking about the standard wiring in your car and not about an amplifier's power wiring, then I think 14-gauge wire ought to work just fine. However, keeping in mind that it's been about 60 years since American cars used 6-volt systems, the original wiring may need replacing anyway.

  • frank from Riverside

    Posted on 8/26/2015

    Question: I'm going to atemp to rewire my old car and go from 6volt to 12volt what gauge wire do I use or can I use the 14 gauge wire from when it was wired before?and just change the bulbs,coil,battery and to alternator.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/24/2015

    Cameron, That amplifier calls out for 1/0-gauge power and ground wiring.

  • cameron from richmond

    Posted on 8/22/2015

    I have a question I have two 12 pioneer pro champion series subs there rated at 2500 watt peak an 1000rms I also have a 5500 watt power acustic amp not sure what it's rms is was woundering what wire I should use to wire it in correctly

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/17/2015

    Ragnor, Like this article says you should only use RMS ratings for system-planning, not peak ratings. That amplifier can put out four channels of 75 watts RMS and one channel of 500 watts RMS at 2 ohms. 4 times 75 equals 300; plus 500 totals 800 watts RMS. Now, using the formula for current, you'll find the amp will draw a maximum of 116 amperes. 4-gauge power and ground wires will work perfectly well for that amplifier.

  • Ragnar from Tórshavn

    Posted on 8/17/2015

    I will be running a JBL GTO-5EZ with my factory head unit using a low line converter. On JBL's website it says that the peak power is 1935 watts. This means I will be running 280 amps, and would 2 gauge wire be enough?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/6/2015

    Shawn, According to Hifonics, that amp should have two 60-amp fuses onboard, 120-amps total. This Cable Gauge article uses a typical 50% efficient AB amplifier as the basis for the formula for finding current draw. But your amp is Class D, which is more efficient. Instead of multiplying the total RMS output by two (the inverse of its 50% efficiency), for your amp we can multiply it by the inverse of 75% instead, and come up with a more accurate rating of 106-amps. If you play loud test tones constantly, your 100-amp fuse may become stressed. But if you play music, which only draws full power about one third of the time, then your 4-gauge wire and 100-amp fuse are A-OK.

  • Shawn from Columbus

    Posted on 8/6/2015

    After reading this I thought about getting new thicker cable. But after doing some digging and getting specs on my amp fuse and fuse in the holder, my issue became no concerned. After some thought it wouldn't be ideal to run 0 Gauge wire. According to the steps to figure your amperage there is no way that calculation is correct. The calculation states in pulling 159 amps, if that is so, then my 100 anl fuse in my power cable would have 'popped', and or my amp fuse of 80 amps would've as well. This calculation is just a calculation, to accurately find your amperage being 'pulled' a multimeter is your best bet to find the truth. I am running a Hifonics bxr.1116.1d on 4 gauge wire, wired in a 1 ohm load powering two NVX VCW124's. I have two power capacitors an 8 farad Soundstream and a 1 farad NVX, but the capacitors won't affect amperage being pulled. Plus before I installed the Caps no fuse blowing was occurring. My wire is not cut down due to having the Caps and I actually added an extra 5 feet or power and ground to accomodate both caps for placement. So realistically I have approximately 23 feet or power wire.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/5/2015

    Joshua, The fuse or circuit breaker on your power wire protects the wire and your vehicle from fire in the event of a short circuit. A 4-gauge wire, under this circumstance, will burn your car to the ground before a 300-amp circuit breaker will trip. Please, for your safety, replace that 300-amp breaker with a 100-amp fuse or breaker as soon as possible. And be sure to mount it as close to the battery as you can.

  • Joshua from Los Angeles

    Posted on 8/5/2015

    I have two 4 Ohm Alpine Type R's, wired down to 1 Ohm with a 1900.1 Brutus Amp, with 4 gauge lead and ground wire , with a 300 amp circuit breaker , my amp only has two 60 amp fuses in it , should this give me any problems ? Or would it be fine as long as the amp isn't using the full 300 amps

  • Jason from Idaho Falls

    Posted on 8/3/2015

    Thanks, that was a far faster response than I had expected. I'm just adding a bit of punch to the already existing stock sound setup. I likely will sell the car with the amp in it. There were a lot of factors that went into picking something that would sound nice and not overpower the stock speakers. I will likely be using this amp at no more than 35% volume tuned in relation to the factory setup.I was thinking that Boss was being a bit generous with their spec but a second opinion doesn't hurt.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 8/3/2015

    Jason, Judging by that amp's single 30-amp fuse, I think that the 8-gauge kit it came with will be okay, in spite of the math using the published specs. You could upgrade to 4-gauge cable, so you wouldn't have to re-wire if you got a stronger amp in the future.

  • Jason from Idaho Falls

    Posted on 8/3/2015

    Just checking my math and making sure I'm not going to melt anything in my pretty black 2009 Impala LT. I have an AR1500M Boss amp rated at 1500w peak and 700w RMS running at 2ohms on an Infinity 12" sub with 2 voice coils at 4 ohms at 2500w peak. I'm not sure what the RMS is but I' was thinking it would be underpowered. I have a BOSS Audio KIT2 8 Gauge (sold bundled with the amp) run through the car and I didn't trim any yet but there is a good 6Ft of cable left in the trunk. Haven't hooked anything up yet... My question is this... Will that cable safely handle the power output of the Amp/sub combo Or am I looking at getting something a bit more substantial? Let me know if I missed any details.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/28/2015

    Ryan, Almost all aftermarket car speakers have a nominal impedance of 4 ohms. You don't set an amplifier to an impedance - you hook up a 4-ohm speaker to an amp, and voila: the amp is pushing a 4-ohm load. Rockford Fosgate P1 subwoofers come in SVC 4-ohm and SVC 2-ohm models. Not knowing which ones you have, or what amp you have make it impossible to give advice on how to wire them together. If you want a question answered about your system, you must identify your equipment by brand names and model numbers.

  • Ryan from Louisiana

    Posted on 7/28/2015

    I have an amp and aftermarket door speakers that were already installed in my truck when i got it. No idea what brand, wattage, or impedance the speakers are. Amp is an outdated Alpine 4 channel that puts out 70rms/channel at 4 ohms and 100rms/channel at 2 ohms. I just ordered 2 P1 subs with 250rms and a 500rms amp that should push full power when wired at 2 ohms. My question is how do i tackle wiring these systems when I don't know what one really is but know exactly what I need for the other? And would it matter if the old amp is set at 4 ohms and the new one is 2? I know speakers of different impedance cant be hooked to the same amp but not sure if it matters that two amps are set differently

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/27/2015

    Allen, I can get very little trustworthy information about your amplifiers, plus not knowing what you intend to run with them makes it difficult to give an exact answer. But I think running one 1/0-gauge power wire from your battery to a distribution block will work. From the distribution block you'll need to run 4-gauge power wires to each amp and 4-gauge ground wires from the amps to your chassis connection. If you think you need a capacitor, check out the 3.0 Farad model.

  • allen from lansing

    Posted on 7/26/2015

    Okay I have two amplifiers in my car. I have one 2000.2 autotek amp. 1000 watts per channel or bridged 2000 watts at 2 ohm steady. I went through a lot of problems thinking I had smaller wire because my protect was going off. Now I have 2 gauge lead power with 4 gauge ground. ( turned out a speaker was blown. Second I have a old black lanzar 2100 optidrive competition and with a 45db boost. It is running bridged mono. That runs on same ground but a 6 gauge lead wire. I want to get rid of wires. Can I run both the amplifiers on the same 2 gauge wire running to there full capacity even if I have to But a capacitor and if so what fared? I have been told by a friend if I run both on the same 2 gauge the wire will not handle both amps. I want to split the wire into a snake tongue to each amp. I own a 2000 dodge neon manual 2.0l. The 2 gauge is 18 ft long.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/22/2015

    Neville, I suspect that huge power rating you quote is a peak or maximum specification, which is useless for planning out a sound system. You should use RMS ratings only. Ten feet (3 m) of AWG 0-gauge wire (50 square mm) should be able to supply adequate current for a 2500 watts RMS amplifier.

  • neville from harare ( zim )

    Posted on 7/22/2015

    Good day I got a 8000 watt amp and two 2000 watt sub's my distance from batt is about 3 meters can I use a 0 gauge cable with a 3.2 farad capasitor.

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/20/2015

    David, Seeing as you are the second commenter who read that "divided by" sign as a plus symbol, I am going to rewrite the formula in English, with no mathematical symbols. This way, even if someone should read it on a small screen like a phone, there will be no misunderstanding. Thanks for pointing it out.

  • David B from Phoenix

    Posted on 7/19/2015

    I find it hard to believe the typo in the formula on the page. You might want to change the plus sign to a division sign ;)

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 7/8/2015

    Dylan, If you look a little closer at that symbol you should be able to see that it's an old-fashioned "divided by" sign - a horizontal line with a dot above and a dot below. Sorry if that's unclear.

  • Dylan

    Posted on 7/8/2015

    Just to let you guys know... you have "+ 13.8" not "/ 13.8" written for your formula

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/30/2015

    Ryan, You are correct. Running a 12-foot 4-gauge wire from the battery ensures that all 91 amperes of current will arrive at the distribution block. Running a 4-foot 10-gauge wire for each amp will also guarantee adequate power flow to each amp.

  • Ryan from missouri

    Posted on 6/30/2015

    Should you rate the wires from the distribution block to the amp separately? For example, If you have a two amplifier system pulling 91 amps with 12ft of cable you need 4-ga from the battery all the way up to the distribution block. Once you branch off, the amps are pulling 43 and 48 independently. At 4 feet does this mean it only requires two 10-ga wires?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/30/2015

    Joey, Without knowing the specific model amplifier I can't be sure, but if your amplifier really is capable of putting out 1600 watts RMS of power (RMS not peak), according to this article's formula and chart it needs either 2-gauge or 1/0-gauge wiring, depending on the length. You'd also need a 200-amp to 250-amp fuse to protect your wire and vehicle from fire in the event of a short circuit.

  • Joey from US

    Posted on 6/29/2015

    I made the mistake of buying a cheap walmart brand wire, I originally ran my 1600 watt amp with a 1200 watt power wire, but i sold the wire along with that jeep, So i put my 15" L7 and 1600 watt amp in my truck and thought i could skirt by on that, I just blew 3 fuses in the last 5 minutes, 2 80 amp 1 100 amp. I figure it to be the wire cause the amp works just fine... So what gauge wire should I be using?

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/23/2015

    Mike, I'm not sure you need a capacitor for a 500-watt system, but a capacitor usually gets installed as close to the subwoofer amplifier as possible to be effective, not 25-feet away. 30 feet is awful long - is this an RV or bus? If you don't plan on ever expanding the system or your amplifier uses Class D amp technology, then 4-gauge power and ground wires will do. Otherwise, I'd use 2-gauge power and ground wiring. Crutchfield presently carries 4-gauge wire, but not 2-gauge.

  • mike johnson from champlin, MN.

    Posted on 6/22/2015

    I have installed a 500 watt amp that is 25 feet away from the CAP, it is driving two 12 inch subs and seems that i have installed the wrong power supply wire to the AMP can you help me? and do you have the wire size in stock? will need 30 feet

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 6/17/2015

    Blake, This amplifier's power is right on the edge of two cable sizes, so it will depend on how you use the amp. If you want to drive two 4-ohm speakers: 100 watts RMS x 2 channels = 200 watts RMS total; 200x2/13.8 = 29 amperes; you'd need 10-gauge power and ground cables. If you want to drive two 2-ohm speakers, or want to bridge the amp to run a 4-ohm subwoofer; 400 watts RMS x 1 channel; 400x2/13.8 = 58 amperes; you'll want 8-gauge or 4-gauge wiring, depending on the length needed.

  • Blake from Colorado

    Posted on 6/17/2015

    Great information here, but I am still not sure which gauge to use. I have an AudioBahn A4002T amp that will be going into a 97' Subaru Impreza Outback Sport. Its also about 14' long bumper to bumper so my length would prolly be much shorter than that. The Amp's manual says this: 800 watts ACH Power 100 watts x2 @ 4 Ohms RMS Power 200 watts x2 @ 2 Ohms RMS Power Also tho this website: [Link removed] said that it has an "Output Power / Total: 400 Watt" hence the confusion. Could you clarify on what gauge I would most likely need? Thanks, Blake

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/14/2015

    Gregory, I doubt any vehicle's electrical system will allow you to draw 400+ amperes from it without enhancements like extra batteries and a high-output alternator. This amount of current means your amplifiers are capable of 2,760+ watts RMS output. If this is truly the case, then even 1/0-gauge power and ground wires won't be large enough to safely pass this amount of power. I would suggest using 3/0-gauge (000-ga.) wire for this size application. Even two 2-gauge wires wouldn't be large enough for 400 amperes.

  • gregory from jamaica

    Posted on 5/13/2015

    hey good day guys i just check my system using the calculator and from what i am seeing is i will be drawing about 400+ amps. i had run 2 gauge wire from my battery to my distribution block and on the chat its saying i should have 0 gauge wire,, could i run another 2 gauge wire from the battery to the distribution block or do i have to change it out and get the 0 gauge

  • Buck Pomerantz from Crutchfield

    Posted on 5/11/2015

    Hector, The fuse in an amplifier's power cable should be installed as close to the battery as possible, within 6" ideally. In case of an accident, you do not want a live wire stretching throughout your vehicle - that could lead to a fire. Many people with multi-amp systems also fuse the individual power wires running to each amp. They most often do that with a fused power distribution block.

  • Hector Perez from United States

    Posted on 5/10/2015

    how far I have to install my fuse to my amp?