car audio capacitor question?

my lights dim out when my bass hits peak,

but that is not too bad and i don't really worry about that.

i read somewhere that if you install a capacitor the bass will be better.

my question is if i add a capacitor


if that's true, can someone recommend me one in particular?

i have a sub box with 2 10" and each 10" is 1000 w.

i don't know about the amp, but I'll check if is necessary,

but i know i have 2 amps, and i guess 1 is for the doors,

and the other for the sub box.

any help will be greatly appreciated.

thank you.

8 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favourite answer

    A capacitor is only good so far as the audio system isn't trying to pull too much from the electrical system. A cap doesn't provide more power, it's designed to 'stiffen' the voltage to the amp, nothing else. If the current isn't there, a cap won't help. The alternator must have at least 20% more amperage power than the entire vehicle and sound system combined for a cap to be of benefit which is ironically the same requirements for an amp to be efficient. A cap does it's best to keep the voltage at a certain level, but if the voltage changes so will the cap voltage. The cap just makes the change smoother. The diming light syndrome isn't a voltage issue but rather a current (amperage) drop. The voltage simply follows what the current does. A cap does not help this situation at all. A cap doesn't provide more power nor does it try to correct it.

    so a cap will just be a waste of your money.. you may not need to upgrade anything.. but if anything you will just need to do the "big three" upgrade

    a ho alternator wouldnt hurt but go the cheaper way and upgrade the big three.. if that doesnt help any then go with a ho alternator

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    If your lights dim out, then the voltage at the amplifier is dropping significantly. A cap will help keep your voltage at the amp stable which will allow the bass to hit harder. It will help out with sound quality if the bass clips or the is there is other distortion.

    Caps let their charge go extremely quickly but have a low capacity where a battery has a high capacity and can't release it quickly. To use them effectively, keep the wiring between the cap and the amp as short as possible and use heavy wiring also. A 1 farad cap isn't too expensive, also, the first farad helps the most.

  • G6er
    Lv 6
    1 decade ago

    You can google capacitor set up and get alot of instructions on how to install a capacitor. If your not comfortable don't install one, get a pro to do it because they can actually cause alot of damage if you do them wrong. ALOT of damage, like...big boom.

    I have a similar system. My lights were dimming slightly, and yes the capacitor did fix the problem. I also noticed the bass was crisper. Which makes perfect sense if you understand what a capacitor does.

    I will say that there is conflicting views on the subject, there are many people that say capacitors are not good and that you will need to upgrade your alternator. The fact remains, I had the same problem as you, I got a cap and the problem was fixed, I rest my case and let the facts do the talking.

    You will need nothing less than a 1 farad capacitor for a 1000W amp. Don't worry about the amp for your regular speakers, just worry about a cap for your subs.

    Source(s): Read this, There is a part about how you know when you need a cap.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Well a high output alternator and doing the big 3 wiring would help you out the most on lights dimming see ( A capacitor only stiffens your signal see (

    A couple decent capacitors

    From what i've read for each 500w rms you have you want .5 farad to back it up. so 1000 w would want 1 farad, going bigger can't hurt though. HOWEVER I would more recommend the big 3 and ho alternator as the cap won't help if you can't keep the current.

    Putting a capacitor on your electrical system doesn't really help much.. It just puts more load on your current electrical system.

    Amps * Volts = Watts

    Example: 110v * 2amps=220watts

    Your best bet is to do the big 3 and upgrade your alternator to a higher output.

    as to the question.. the better your electrical system the better its going to sound.

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  • 1 decade ago

    Capacitor won't help with you dimming problem. It will only put a bandaid over it. A capacitor is the LAST thing you should add to you electrical. First is the big three upgrade. Then better batteries. Then a HO alternator. Then more batteries. And finally, a capacitor to help smooth the signal spikes (but thats more for SQ competitions).

    Look at the third post in this thread if you think a capacitor has helped you system....

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    If You got a cap you would notice how it plays longer notes and would hold the low tones.. It should fix the dimming too. Brands that would be good would be Rockford Fosgate, Stinger, or a lanzar. If you do buy a capacitor and decide you are going to put it in FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS and it isn't difficult

  • casi
    Lv 4
    4 years ago

    Do extra suitable examine. Caps do no longer help the dimming. Or save the alternator. think of atbout it... caps discharge a speedy burst of capability then would desire to recharge. so which you have your alternator no longer in easy terms attempting to value the battery now it has to value the cap too.

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    try the power acoustic 5 farad capaciter ...

    and yes your bass will sound BETTER

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