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2009 EX-L 4-cyl sedan, alternator capacity question

Old 10-11-2013, 11:40 PM
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Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 9
Default 2009 EX-L 4-cyl sedan, alternator capacity question

Hi all,

First post here, I'm new to aftermarket audio so please be patient with my ignorance. I'm thinking of upgrading my sound system with an Alpine DSP, new speakers, a new sub and amps - possibly a new head unit as well, but I'm on the fence about this one. Point being, I've been reading up on the subject trying to wrap my head around all the electrical and acoustical concepts, but my questions are multiplying. The biggest thing I'm worried about is my alternator. I'd rather not replace it if possible, and no I'm not thinking of adding the burden of a second battery. My question is just how much can system can I build using the factory alternator without sacrificing reliability? My plans aren't geared towards high volume/SPL, just maximum sound quality, so 1000W amps are probably not something I'm looking at (I'm also planning on adding a fair amount of vibration damping and sound insulation, so that should help matters quite a bit).

Here's what I'm thinking so far (ideally):

-A/V head unit by Alpine, Pioneer, Kenwood or JVC. Should support HD Radio, SiriusXM, integration of the center console Aux In, at least one USB port (preferably two, one at 1.0A for phones and the other at 2.1A for tablets), Bluetooth 2.1+EDR or later with HFP hands-free calling and A2DP audio streaming, and be iPhone compatible with support for iPhone navigation, Siri Eyes Free and streaming audio/video. Primarily looking at Pioneer AppRadio 3 and Alpine ICS-X7HD, also Kenwood DNN990HD and JVC KW-AV71BT.

-DSP/EQ with high/low pass filters. Alpine PXA-H800 and Rockford Fosgate 3Sixty.3 are the main contenders.

I'm really not sure about amps, speakers or the subwoofer yet, since it's largely dependent on the charging capacity of my electrical system. I'm hoping to keep as much trunk space free as possible, so I'm thinking I'll just go with one subwoofer using the original mounting location, and keep a 6-speaker setup. Of course this all assumes that I'm keeping the rest of the car's features, such as powering both 12V outlets, and even adding a backup camera and/or parking sensors, fog lights and ambient lighting.

Thanks for any input you can give!

Last edited by Gerhard01; 10-12-2013 at 12:04 AM.
Old 10-12-2013, 09:59 PM
Senior Member Stereo Guru..Almost A Mod :)
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if you stay at or around 1k watts, you should be fine with factory alternator and a high end battery under the hood.
Old 10-13-2013, 12:38 AM
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Join Date: Dec 2009
Location: Quad Cities, IL
Posts: 3,212

welcome! sounds like an awesome project.

I really like the PXA-H800 with the matching controller (i've put the RUX0C701 controller in place of the sunglasses holder before ). But the ICS-X7HD has the new TuneIt feature set which gives you time alignment, 9-band parametric, and crossovers included. Jumping to the H800 is a big investment and worth it if you plan on going full active with the speaker amplification (meaning you will want 6 amp channels for speakers). I run the CDE-HD149BT with the same tuning and I have eliminated external processing. it may be sufficient to just run the front components through the passive crossover.

The stock alt can keep up with a musical system but you want one good AGM battery under the hood and you want to upgrade all electrical wiring associated with charging (also called The Big 3).

There are a lot of highly efficient full-range Class D amplifiers on the market now that will help ease the burden on the stock alt. They are also compact which helps with locating them.

the stock sub location needs a lot of help to be useful - that help will be permanent modifications and stiffening to the rear deck. a single sealed fiberglass enclosure in the rear passenger corner would be worlds better and not cause you to do a lot of modifications.

for speaker/sub types, i am immensely impressed with Hertz Mille series.

naturally, deadening the car will help, see the sticky i've created for some examples of what I do.
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