Car amp in dorm room


i have a 1000 watt amp and 2 subs that i am trying to hook up in my dorm room. i got an inverter for the wall outlet, and the amp powers up fine. however, after 5 seconds the bass cuts almost completely out and the power light starts getting dimmer then brighter then dimmer then brighter, the same thing happens to the power light on the inverter.

i was wondering what i have to do to keep enough power going to the amp? thanks


your power inverter is probably rated at 3 amps continuous (if you're lucky) but your amp draws closer to 40amps. Even at idle (no sound at all) the amp pulls probably 6 amps... If you want to use the amp in a dorm room you'll need a bigger power inverter but the size you need will exceed the cost of a home theatre system complete. If you try to run your amp without enough power you will destroy it, the car amp belongs in a car.

Get a car battery, and charger (preferably NOT a manual one).build a rack - incorparate them into your sound system!

If you throw a car battery in your room, make sure it's damn well ventilated. Car batteries emit toxic fumes from the vents when used.

Place the negative wire to ur left nut, and the positive to ur right nut. This should generate enough power for a small community.

Im hot
Every1 will be flamboyant by the year 2012!!!!

why would u want 2 do this

Dude bad idea and remeber grage sales are anoher alternative

Bass Thrust
I've done what you're tyring to do, let me tell you, if done right, your dorm room will rock, literally!
Now to your problem...
It's your inverter. It doesn't even give you 5% of the current your 1000w amp needs. What you need is a 12v power supply of at least 25 amps, minimum. They're not cheap, check eBay, here's an example:

Have fun.

what would happen if i attached a power wire stait to the hot wire in a wall outlet grounded it and did it that way?

Uhh lets think about that one. Don't get me wrong your dorm room will shake but it wont be ur speakers it will be your amp exploding. Peace

Derek I.
check out this site from my forum.

it explains pretty much everything about car audio at home.

the above web site is good, i followed his instructions very closley, its true all you need is a car battery and a charger to power any car amp at home. and because you have the battery and the charger powering the amp at the same time your amp will be getting about 14volts wich is good because that means it will be louder.but be carefull charging a battery for longer than needed can stuff the battery, this was the only thing i was worried about.

Unregistered guest
Thanks for the info Derek, looks like I will have to invest in a battery charger for my project. My plan was to get an 8-10" sub, an inverter, a 500w or so amp, Premier speakers, and wire it up to my comp for when listening to music. I currently have a 5.1 Monsoon MH-505 set, but it doesn't get loud enough and the crossover is horrible (cuts out at around 10,000hz I think). But I didn't think of the battery and charger before this!

New member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 319
Registered: 12-2003
1: prolonged use of a trickle charger on a car battery will cause the battery to burst. The casing will distend, then the casing will split open, expelling battery acid all over your floor.

2: never, EVER use a lead acid car battery in a confined space like insode a house. Lead Acid batteries produce hydrogen gas when they are heated, which is also a side effect of charging them. You really don't want to breathe that.

more info on battery types:


Long time user
Unregistered guest
You'll have to use a deep cycle battery which has around 90 to 160Amp hour if you want it all to work for an hour or more, you shouldnt have to use a charger at the same time because you might blow it that's what happend to me. If you want a power supply cheap enough try this web site they have preety good 12v power supplies that are built to work with powerfull appliances including amplifiers. I'm just using a deep cycle battery for now but when I get the money I'm buying a power supply oh and if your still not shore ask someone at the nearest car sound shop they use 12v power supplies and they should tell you were to pick one up. And dont use car batteries they are only ment for starting motors the alternator powers the rest of the car's equiptment so get somthing better. Iv'e worked in this area for 2 years now and this is about all the usefull info you'd get, but remember car audio in your room is very possible you just need the money and knowledge to do so.

New member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 387
Registered: 12-2003
just go buy a home stereo.


Who Cares
Unregistered guest
Trying to hook-up a car amp in a house or dorm room, is not only pointless, its dangerous, like glasswolf said. House speakers are 8ohms anyways. And if you want something for just raw power, buy a power amplifier from Guitar Center. They also can run on more than just 8ohms anyways. In case you try to use car speakers next.

Unregistered guest
one time, at band camp, i tried to hook up a car amp to a wall outlet and it didn't work, so i stuck a fork in the outlet to see if something was wrong with it, and it hurt, so i cried. :-(

austin davis
Unregistered guest
Recently i went to a car audio convention and they had systems set up all over the store using a stinger cap (if u know what that is) and some power source and they were loud. so i know it can work it just might be dangerous using a car battery

New member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 643
Registered: 12-2003
"some power source"
yes that power source costs more than just buying a home audio system.
the purpose of what you sawa was to dem car audio in a convention center.. that's all.
the capacitor was useless.

I bought a pretty sweet power transformer off ebay australia check em out they are made by POWERTECK. $299 Aus

New member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 745
Registered: 12-2003
*what you saw was to demo.

for $300-500 US, I could buy an entire "home theater in a box" system.

Unregistered guest
GlassWolf, I see your point, but you have to realize that some people love the thrill of making crap (myself included).

Also, I think a car battery used in the house is a VERY DANGEROUS solution.

Here's something i ran across, that someone posted on another forum. I plan to do this myself.

If you have some knowledge in electronics here is a quick and easy way to rewire a car amp to work in home.

This is simple. You don't need a 12V 20A-power source you can go directly into the amp. Find the 2 large capacitors take a measurement using a voltmeter, and determine the voltage. It should be somewhere around 40-60DC volts for a 200watt amp could be less. Now that you have determined the voltage, get a transformer that is 77.7% AC of that voltage you could go with 85% too (More Power). Remove the Torrid Coil (this is the round looking thing with several windings), this is used to jump up the 12V-battery power to the voltage necessary to operate the amp. Note it is imperative to remove this coil. On the secondary side of the coil solder in the secondary leads from the transformer. Plug it in and there you are for way less money it would cost to get a 12V-power supply to sufficiently power the amp. I have done this with several amps works great.


Gold Member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 1081
Registered: 12-2003
not a good idea, but have fun if you really want to bother.
you'll end up spending more, and it'll still sound like crap.

if you want home audio, then get a system designed for a home, not for a car.


Unregistered guest
Yes it can be done and i will explain to you how.

First though, unless you know what hell you are doing, you are going to be risking some seriuos damage to your equipment not to mention an electrical fire.

Second, I wouldnt be bringing a car subwoofer and its huge magnet anywhere near a computer. Correct me if I'm wrong, but those babies arent magnetically shielded like your home audio equipment.

Forget the battery and charger crap i read above, that is stupid, unhealthy, and unreliable, not to mention ugly.

You will need a linear ac to dc power convertor, not the cheap *ss shiit you find at radio shack or auto zone. Something that will give you at least 20 continuous amps at 13.6 volts. I personally would go with an ASTRON RS-50M

Again, this shiit is NOT CHEAP and wont find this shiit in any rinky dink electronic store. Essentially what you will be using are battery chargers/supplies for boats and RV's, thats what this shiit, like the ASTRON, is built for.

Next, Your power supply, ASTRON for example, will have a dc postive and negative output terminal. Hook up your power wire (with in-line fuse of course) for your amp to the positive and ground to the negative. NOw the tricky part comes on getting your piece of shiit amp to turn on. You can take an 18 guage wire and run it directly from the power slot on your amp to the remote slot on your amp. Whenver your amp gets power, it will also feed the remote wire and turn on your amp. I TAKE NO REPONSIBILITY FOR YOU BLOWING YOUR AMP OR HOME OR YOURSELVES OR ANYONE ELSE OR ANYTHING UP. USE THIS SHIIT AT YOUR OWN RISK, I AM NOT A PROFESSIONAL.

Gold Member
Username: Glasswolf

Post Number: 1097
Registered: 12-2003
That 20A continuous won't be enough to handle most amplifiers.
Most car audio systems today, particularly with these popular, large class-D amplifiers, draw between 60-200+A of current.

The main problem you'll encounter is that most dorms, homes etc, all run on 20A circuit breakers.
The first time you try to run some 1200W sub amplifier on a home circuit, you'll find yourself sitting in the dark till you can make your way to the breaker box and reset the breaker you just blew.

still a waste of time.
and it'll still sound like crap.
car audio enclosures and speakers aren't designed for home environments.

Unregistered guest
If you want a loud stereo in your dorm ,and your still stuck on wanting car in your room, get a good size house amp(not reciever) and hook up 2 4ohm car subs in series to find a 8 ohm load. I have found that car subs work great in houses but keep them away from tv, comp ect.

New member
Username: N30

Post Number: 6
Registered: 02-2004
People who don't like to experiment a little and think you should have some knowledge of what you are doing piss me off. I discovered the following to be true on my own.

....did you know, in a pinch you can use an old fashioned hair pin in lieu of a 15amp fuse? I conducted this simple test myself and can attest that the pin will not permit 15 amps of current past, however I am not sure at what amperage the pin broke the circuit. You can repeat this test to verify my findings only after you have read and understand the instructions below.

First, obtain a hair pin similar to the one pictured below.

Next, find an electrical outlet in your home on a 15 amp circuit. Now spread the pin apart to match the width of the holes in the outlet (ignore the ground hole). Now grasp the pin firmly in the palm of your hand and insert it into the outlet.

The test was successful if:

1. The pin melted without tripping the circuit breaker.
2. You now have a cauterized imprint of the pin in the palm of your hand.
3. You wake up, hopefully, at some point in the near future with an incredibly agonizing pain emanating from your hand realizing that #2 above is true.

The test was not successful if:

1. You are dead.
2. You stand there being shocked until your teeth begin to crumble and the severely painful muscle spasms cause you to disconnect from the outlet or someone not realizing this a test, picks up a large piece of non-conducting furniture and knocks you down which in itself may result in #1. (Please note: If either of these should occur, the test has not been completed and you may or may not elect to repeat the test procedure).
3. You have chosen to utilize the commonly accepted method to protect circuits despite the fact that the hair pin method may work fine if properly executed and may not cause overloads, house fires, catastrophic equipment failures, etc.

As I stated, I actually conducted this test with a hair pin I found and all successful test criteria were met. One other minor point, but I feel compelled to mention this. I was 3 years old at the time and still remember waking up in the hospital asking my dad if I was going to die. Needless to say, I didn't but learned to have a healthy respect for things electric just by a little experimentation.

Unregistered guest
I too wanted the look and feel of car audio in my house. After painstakingly researching all the information I came to one conclusion and set forth on my quest.
First of all you don't need all of this silliness inverters/batterys/rectifiers/ etc etc. this is a complete list of what you need.
1) a chainsaw (preferably 16" or bigger)
2) a set of leather gloves
3) a case of domestic lager (samual adams was my choice)

now...on with the show:
Take said case of lager and drink it as fast as you possibly can. DO NOT STOP FOR URINATION!!! you must continue drinking until all the beers are gone. If you must, wet yourself.

Now carefully slide on the leather gloves. (since you are insistant on putting car audio into your home, you might want to take a moment and be sure that the gloves are placed upon the right respective hands. Having the gloves positioned in the opposite direction then they are designed will undoubtedly create havoc for the next step. up that chainsaw. Be sure to stand against a tree or some other type of support since by now, the beers will be kicking in.
Find the room in which you want the car audio placed and begin cutting a hole through the exterior portion of said room. Completely cut through every layer (siding,OSB,studs, and drywall/plaster) Be sure that the hole is approximately 6" larger then your vehicle.

Now.....Drive said vehicle into the room of your choice and cover the existing hole with a brown or blue tarp. If you can get ahold of about 20 kid rock posters they would be a nice look on the exterior portion of the tarp. Just use some spray adhesive to apply.

Now.....DO NOT LEAVE THE ENGINE RUNNING!!! this will only create a bad situation for the other people within the domicile who might have a brain.

You are now free to CRANK IT UP!!!!!! pop in that 50 cent cd and have a ball.


New member
Username: N30

Post Number: 7
Registered: 02-2004 thats the best method yet fortyamps, especially the lager!
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