Factory JBL amp gain

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Factory JBL amp gain

Postby Franklin1862 » Mon Sep 19, 2016 6:15 pm

Recently replaced my dead factory head unit with a pioneer and I was able to keep the JBL stuff. Sounds fantastic and I really don't want to swap the amp out but I need just about 1/4 more volume out of it to be satisfied.

Question is does anyone have a schematic or any experience tearing into the amp to try and turn the gain up just a little bit? New deck has a crossover but no way to turn up overall volume and it's not even close to overworking the speakers where it's at. It's loud just not quite loud enough.
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Re: Factory JBL amp gain

Postby CDW6212R » Mon Sep 19, 2016 8:13 pm

Welcome to the forum. The factory speakers are the best part of the JBL system, and the CD player or either OEM deck can control a changer. Those are very good quality, but upgrading to aftermarket choices is harder, due to the unique wiring from the deck to the amp.

I don't think the JBL amp has more to give, it's good, but not near the level of some aftermarket stuff. I can point you to a used amp on eBay, which is the exact model I'm going to use, and if it will vastly improve sound volume, and be notably clearer. The Nakamichi amps of 30 years ago were the best you could get then, and not much comes close today. Search for "Nakamichi PA amp*" and notice there are two there now for $125 each, 35wx4, the PA 350. If they are still good, and that was part of why they are great(they survive this long), those are night and day better than any OEM amp. They do require RCA cables, so you will have to route two pairs from the dash to the trunk, and rearrange the speaker wires back there(or run new ones).

The $125 price is a hair low, they usually sell for $150 when the auction starts low and people get interested. I have several of the PA amps, and my first was a PA 200 in my first car. It only has 30wx2, but it'd run you out of the car, clear as a bell at full volume. If you try one of those amps, you will not regret it. Just be sure to test it quickly when you buy used, to be sure it's good. The only weak link inside that I know of is the heat barrier coating placed on the heat sinks. Anyone servicing those must restore that, and often people opening up one causes the issue if they mess with(remove it) that white material. You want one that is untouched, after 35 years they are still excellent, thus the high demand from people who know about them.

http://www.ebay.com/itm/172281372723?_t ... EBIDX%3AIT
Don
1991 Red Special Edition, my 2nd SE, dead paint, DWS 255/45/17's on 95 Cobra wheels, and soon; DVD/Navi/backup camera, OBDII and the 347, before custom paint.
98 Mountaineer with Continental DWS 255/55/18's, big sway bars, custom brakes. Soon to be A4WD with XP8 bumpers and wing.

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Re: Factory JBL amp gain

Postby Franklin1862 » Wed Sep 21, 2016 6:47 am

Thanks for the reply. Good information. I've installed dozens of amps and speakers and have a few amps laying around so I could throw one of them in but my hope was maybe there is a potentiometer inside I could just dial up a little bit since it sounds so good already.

Or maybe someone has even changed a couple of resistors to squeeze just a little more out of it. It's plenty loud enough for most people's taste so I'll probably just pair it with a small sub and leave it be.

Thanks again I appreciate the info.
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Re: Factory JBL amp gain

Postby CDW6212R » Wed Sep 21, 2016 1:18 pm

You could contact Paul Protos who rebuilds all of the main electronics items of these cars. He should recall what's inside the JBL amp and may be able to say whether it's untouchable or what.
Don
1991 Red Special Edition, my 2nd SE, dead paint, DWS 255/45/17's on 95 Cobra wheels, and soon; DVD/Navi/backup camera, OBDII and the 347, before custom paint.
98 Mountaineer with Continental DWS 255/55/18's, big sway bars, custom brakes. Soon to be A4WD with XP8 bumpers and wing.

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Re: Factory JBL amp gain

Postby oldschool1 » Wed Sep 21, 2016 11:11 pm

Good info!

Thanks Guys!

MOVED TO ELECTRONIC.
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