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NCSurfing

Quick question...

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NCSurfing

For those of you with a black box setup, do you get an FM signal in your garage? I'm getting static all the way thru and am trying to figure out if I have an antenna connection issue or not....

Edited by NCSurfing

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mikeo

The default antenna in the boat is lousy at best. You're not going to hear much, even on the water, with the default antenna; I would expect that in a garage you're not going to be able to hear anything.

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Wayne

Same here, I get about 10% of the stations my truck gets and that's a comparison from when the boat was on the trailer right behind the truck.

Best reception I've seen in a boat was on a friends 1998 Ski Nautique. He installed one of the roof style antennas from a modern car on the dash of his boat. He mounted it right in line with the windshield frame so it was very inconspicuous. I think the antenna he used was a $10 junk yard item.

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David

Three issues make FM reception in a garage more challenging.

Towboat antennas are usually very poor.

Amplifier switching power supplies can disrupt FM reception, with some amplifiers it's minor, and with others the interference is really bad.

The garage structure compounds both of the above, even more so if you have a metal door or metal stud construction.

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Truekaotik

So here are three quick remedies...

1. Get a booster or better antenna than the current one.

2. Move it outside the garage for a minor improvement.

3. It is what it is, they suck.

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MLA

In my area, only about 3 local FM's come in in the shop with the door closed, and thats typical will most source units and antennas, even cars.

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NCSurfing

Cool...seems like I am ok then - thank you guys for confirming.

My install is coming along thus, I just got my first taste of how bad the volume level is on Viper Bluetooth. Gonna have to look thru some threads on that one. You would think this stuff would be top notch given what we pay for these boats!!!!

Edited by NCSurfing

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mikeo

Cool...seems like I am ok then - thank you guys for confirming.

My install is coming along thus, I just got my first taste of how bad the volume level is on Viper Bluetooth. Gonna have to look thru some threads on that one. You would think this stuff would be top notch given what we pay for these boats!!!!

one suggestion: in line amplifier between the black box and the amps. You should be able to get one for ~$100 or less.

Someone pointed out that the black box only puts out ~2V before the signal starts clipping and the amps want ~8V to give "good" sound. I'm "demoing" a Rockford Fosgate 3Sixty.3 to raise the voltage and deal with some unique crossover curves I need to maintain for the custom/homebuilt HLCDs I put on the tower.

I'll write up the 3Sixty.3 once I get it installed, tuned, and tested where I can crank up the volume.

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Truekaotik

Cool...seems like I am ok then - thank you guys for confirming.

My install is coming along thus, I just got my first taste of how bad the volume level is on Viper Bluetooth. Gonna have to look thru some threads on that one. You would think this stuff would be top notch given what we pay for these boats!!!!

Just a reminder that the volume on the phone affects the output to the viper Bluetooth.

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David

On the line voltage issue....

Keep in mind that most amplifiers will function with an input voltage as low as 0.2 volts. And most will perform well with an honest 2.0 volts.

In my experience, a real 4 to 5 volts going into the amplifier is all you need to a) get maximum dynamic range, and b) minimize the noise floor.

Many amplifiers have a top end input voltage threshold of 4 volts, some 6 volts, and a select few as much as 8 volts.

It's not realistic for a single pot at the front end of an amplifier to cover a voltage ratio more than 20 to 1. Passed that you should have an input selection switch.

There's a limit to anything. So what happens if you have too much voltage? Nothing good. It can introduce distortion.

What does the input pot do with too much voltage? Nothing productive. Raises the inline resistance to impede the voltage and shunts excess voltage to ground.

The ideal in achieving unity gain is to arrive at your dynamic range & noise floor objectives without an up-and-down roller-coaster ride between excessive voltage and the unnecessary attenuation of excess voltage.

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