iPod through a car amp

Discussion in 'iPod' started by JonHimself, Dec 25, 2005.

  1. macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #1
    Hey, I was searchign around trying to find a straight-up response to this question but I have been unsuccessful. (Please direct me to the thread if there is one and you know of it)
    I have been looking to pretty much replace my car stereo headunit and just use my iPod (and eventually a Sirius radio). Would it be possible to just run my ipod directly into a car amp (through RCA) and then out to my speakers? Eventually I plan on getting the sirius receiver and then also running that through rca into the car amp (perhaps through some sort of a switch so I can hook both up... I'm just wondering if I will get a good level coming out of the amp (from both the ipod and sirius receiver)? I imagine that it would be fine but I dont' know enough to be 100% sure.
     
  2. Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #2
    The sort of switch you are looking for that might also be able to change the volume sent to the power amp sounds very much like a head unit. ;) They often throw in radio in those for "free".

    Seriously the line out levels, even from the dock connector, are pretty anemic, so many car integration kits include a preamp.

    B
     
  3. thread starter macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #3
    That's my concern really.. is just the level coming out of the iPod... I was just doing some more searching on some other forums and have found people that say they just directly plugged the iPod into the RCA inputs and it worked great (I don't know if they used the headphone output to RCA or if they got the dock connector to RCA though... that might make a difference)

    And nice comment about the head units :) I think I could grab one of those connectors that use the CD changer input but I would like to try something different and use just the iPod. Of course if that is not possible then I guess I'll live with it...

    The reason why I think that it might be possible is people who use carpc's (or car macs.. whatever) have to be running their sound somehow and I doubt it uses the headunit as a receiver ... I just assumed they used the audio out on the computer straight to the amp.
     
  4. Moderator

    balamw

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2005
    Location:
    New England
    #4
    I think it's doable to get acceptable results, but you can get better results with a bit more gain.

    I personally use a cassette adapter with my 5G and originally hooked it up to the headphone jack. At full volume I still had to turn it up a lot to be a decent volume. Now I use a Belink Auto Kit and it hooks up to the dock connector and has a preamp. I now have the gain on the preamp set at about 75% and get to about parity with the internal CD/radio in the head unit.

    Hooking up to the dock connector line out will not give you any volume control from the iPod, but gives you a constant level to work with, so you'd need some other thing to contol the volume. Hence the HU comment.

    B
     
  5. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    #5
    if its an aftermarket amp then it will work fine, if its an OEM amp then you need to determine if the inputs to the amp are high level or low level
     
  6. thread starter macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #6
    Ok, the ones I have seen while looking around have been low-level RCA inputs. Can you let me know a little more about high-leve v. low-level?
     
  7. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    #7
    yes if you are buying a new amp they will have low level rca inputs and will work just fine :)

    make sure the input range goes down nice and low 200 or 250mV should be fine
     
  8. thread starter macrumors 68000

    JonHimself

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2004
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #8
    Ok awesome, thanks! Now I guess I would have to use the headphone jack-to-RCA to be able to control the volume (not the dock-to-RCA)? Other than that I think that solves my iPod problems... would you happen to know about Sirius receivers as well? I was going to get one to use both in the car and in my house. I would not be using the FM transmitter on the sirius receiver but if it had a 1/8 in or rca out, I could just plug that into the amp as well, correct?
     
  9. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2005
    #9
    yes.

    I know nowthing about sirius, pretty sure it doesnt work in aus

    If it had a line out you could plug it into the amp too, it would be a good idea to get a audio switch so that you can select between sirius and the ipod. Just using a Y adaptor to connect both the ipod and sirius to the amp at the same time could (probably wont but it never hurts to be on the safe side) damage either the ipod or the sirius.
     

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