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2012 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello,

New to the forum, but not to Hondas. Settling into dad-life post active duty military. Went from Dual Income No Kids (DINK) to "two jobs don't matter, kids are freaking expensive." Sold my 91 Civic, bought an '06 Si. Realized I wanted something safer for my kids and would need a "truck" when I moved home, so I opted for the Ridgeline. I'm loving it so far. The one downside is I want a nicer radio that provides backup camera, navigation, but opting to keep the steering wheel controls and stock sub. Here's what I've come up with so far. Please let me know if I'm missing anything.

Radio: Alpine iLX-W650 w/KTA-450 powerpack $450

Steering Wheel Interface: Maestro Analog Steering Wheel Interface: $50

Backup Camera: $21

Sub Amp: Alpine BBX-T600 $92

Metra Dash Kit: $12.50

BOSS Wiring Kit: $15.99

OEM Tailgate Handle for backup camera, matching paint: $40.96

Total Wallet/KIds College Savings damage: Roughly $682.45 before tax

Really not too concerned about the camera install or the HU/powerpack combo. I've read a lot about the camera and I've done a powerpack install/several headunits in the last ten years. I'm a little rusty, but I plan on doing all the wiring at my kitchen table prior to beginning tear down and I've conducted plenty of research to ensure I install correctly.

Questions I have:

1. The Alpine headunit w/powerpack is built to fit in the dash where the old HU was. No issues there. Is there space behind the dash for the second amp to drive the sub? I'd like to have the amp behind the console so I can tap it into the stock sub wires no issue.

2. As far as wiring goes, I'm comfortable running wires through the firewall (so long as I don't have to tear up a grommet or anything-I hate modifying things from original to extent that they can't be reasonably modified back). Where is a good place to run the ground wire for the sub amp?

3. Looks like the BBX-T600 is rated for 140 amps bridged. Is that too much power for this baby stock sub? In the end, if I blow it, I've heard rumor of small subs that'll fit in the stock enclosure, or I will upgrade to something small I can conceal in the stock sub location. Either way, got kids and I'm about to put my wife through medical school while preparing for a National Guard deployment, so every dollar in my savings account counts nowadays.

4. Are there any clips I should anticipate breaking/replacing as I pull the trim from the interior to run the video cable from the bed to the radio?

Anyways, thanks for the input in advance. I am definitely looking forward to hearing everyone's thoughts. I have built the wishlist on Amazon and got the wife's approval, so I am just trying to ensure I don't overlook anything.

I'll also follow on with photos after the install. I like documenting to ensure others don't experience the same pain I do.
 

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2019 RTL-T Forest Mist Metallic
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443 Posts
Your question number 2 is the question I was wondering about, and it might be hard to find an answer as the actual specs for the stock equipment is not usually available. Unless someone has already done this mod who could tell you.
You might want to consider spending another 100 bucks or so for a subwoofer that would go with that amp and probably sound way better than the stock sub.
Anyway, I don't know much about it, but chimed in so I could follow your project. Please keep us updated.
 

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2006 Ridgeline RTL/Sun/Navi - BLACK - Aftermarket HU/Cam
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8 Posts
I have an '06 with a sub amp and a (different) alpine HU. I had a shop install, but spent a good amount of time fixing it.

1. It probably depends on your amp. Mine was too big, I placed it behind the rear seat next to the sub itself and it fits perfectly there. Wires run-up to the front from that point.
2. The shop ran a short ground wire for the amp. If you open the drivers side rear door, and look straight down, that very first piece of trim is like a plastic foot step pops up and they screwed it in to the metal underneath. No problems, working great!
3. I cant speak directly to this, but maybe you can compare to mine linked above. My sub has been working perfectly with it. My new HU did blow all 4 door speakers though, so they got replaced right away
4. I had a few break on the door panels, and some on that trim piece the ground cable is run to. They are pretty cheap (I got 25/$11) so cant hurt to have them around.
 

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2012 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
UPDATE: Wife cleared me hot to make the purchase. Between Hilton Honors points (my last tour active duty I was the Marine Corps Recruiting Station Baton Rouge Executive Officer, so I spent about 100 nights a year in hotels across Louisiana and Mississippi - I had loads of points and this cleared them out) and credit card rewards points we’ve never used (had the card since 2009) I didn’t pay a dime!

I did end up using a kit different than the BOSS kit.Started reading reviews on the BOSS kit and the cables are not to AWG standards and although I’m not pushed a lot of power with my setup I don’t want to sacrifice quality in the safety lane. Decided to go with this one - several in depth reviews online inspired confidence.

SoundBox Connected 4 Gauge Amp Kit Amplifier Install Wiring Complete 4 Ga Installation Cables 2200W Amazon.com: SoundBox Connected 4 Gauge Amp Kit Amplifier Install Wiring Complete 4 Ga Installation Cables 2200W

More updates to follow!
 

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2006 Ridgeline RTS in Steel Blue
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7,135 Posts
If you poke around in this section of the forum it’s all been done before, that amp is larger than the others I have seen and with that I agree with mounting behind the rear seat adjacent to the rear sub location another location would be under the passenger front seat.
If you find any posts by @OhSix he was driving the crap out of the stock sub and it sounded good and had some kick. We weren’t going to win any bass contest but it was amazing what it sounded like.
 

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2012 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the input thus far everyone. Parts are all in and I soldered the wiring harnesses together tonight - save for the power/ground/accessory from the Metra harness to the Alpine harness. I was on the fence about the wiring and thus crimped them for the time being.

402225


So something I realized when reading the manuals. Maybe as a kid I never realized this because I never read the manuals, but the radio's manual indicates the radio should be connected to the battery and the power lead on the Alpine harness has a female crimp connector. When I bought the kit, Alpine advertised it as not needing power from the battery. I checked the powerpack manual too, and it ALSO indicates a dedicated line should be run to the battery. After an hour of searching, finding nothing definitive, I talked to my best friend who worked on cars with me in high school.college and he agreed this was odd. Finally found a Crutchfield video for the power pack indicating if the vehicle has a 15 amp fuse or greater then you're good to tap into the vehicle's power/ground for the radio.

402224


In the picture above, the Metra adapter harness is in the bottom right. You can see I crimped the power and ground to the Alpine Radio Harness in the upper right. The power pack harness, lower left, is setup for the speakers but the power and ground haven't been connected yet.

Here's my question for the evening though. This Metra harness has the smallest wires in the group. The power pack has a 12 gauge power/ground (written on the wires). The radio looks to have 14 (eyeballing this). The Metra harness looks like 16-18 (also an eyeball). Is running the radio through that wire harness AND tapping the power pack power wire into the radio hardness downstream (splicing into the power between the harness and radio) a good idea? I'm thinking about tapping into the power on the actual vehicle harness. This Metra harness is all of the sudden scaring me with how small the wires are. Am I overthinking this?

Thanks in advance.
 

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2014 Sport
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3,131 Posts
What are the Alpine's recommendations for the power pack? What size circuit does it require.
This is what it says on the Crutchfield site about the power connection for the kta-450
"Power/Ground: The power and ground wires in the harness are 14-gauge. (Actually each has two 16-gauge wires from the harness, merged to a single 14-gauge wire.) The power wire should be extended and connected directly to the battery, using an in-line 20-amp fuse near the battery terminal."

And this is what it says in the Alpine owner's manual
"Battery Lead (Yellow)Connect battery lead directly to BATT +Be sure to add a 20A fuse (sold separately) as close as possible to the battery’s (+) terminal"

Basically I don't think either of the ideas (connecting before or after the metra) you mentioned for providing power to the amp are good ones. You need to run new wire all the way to the battery and have a 20amp fuse installed close to the battery connection.
Aren't you running a new wire for the sub anyway? You can install a small distribution block inside the cabin somewhere and connect to the sub's power run. Just make sure that you wire is big enough to handle the sub plus the 20amps from the power pack.
 

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My power pack has been fed off the headunit power for over a few years now. No issues. If you are worried you can run the power wire with your larger amp wire through the fire wall and feed it off the fuse block for your large amp.

3. Depends on high of a volume you go. I suspect it wouldn't last long at moderate levels bridged. I have my powerpack powering the sub with the knob at about 1/2 and it sounds great. Just run it off a single channel. 70watts is plenty to make it sound good

EDIT: I have the 445u which is different. And that says I can run it off headunit power. So I think you should run a seperate power like the attached drawing.
 

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2012 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Thanks for the replies guys. I actually bought a distribution block from Best Buy but it was missing several screws, looks like it was used. I’ll be calling Best Buy to return and getting another one from Amazon I guess.

Started the install today. Got the handle and camera on the tailgate, installed the amp under the driver seat, and ran amp/camera wires. I had the setback of the distribution block not being right so I was planning to run the power pack and head unit off the factory hardness. You’ve all convinced me that’s not the way to do business, so I’ll be running the wires tomorrow for the distribution block.

I think some of my setbacks today are just due to not having worked on cars like this in quite some time. Didn’t break anything like I did as a kid, but just went really slow.

The camera was a PERFECT fit in the handle. I haven’t put the tailgate back together yet though. I wanted to leave it apart until I could adjust the camera.

Anyways, more to follow. Guess I’ll get things straightened out and ready for the distribution block. Just hope it doesn’t take as long to arrive as the tailgate handle (arrived today).

QUESTION: I bought 12 ga wire to run to
the distribution block for the power pack. The power pack harness is 14 ga (12 ya power lead). Any issue here?
 

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2012 Honda Ridgeline RTL
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Discussion Starter #11
So I finished my work, got the head unit install completed and ran a distribution block for the sub amp and power pack behind the underdash fuse box. Been installed for over a week now and I love it. Pictures:

Meet Google Drive – One place for all your files

Photos of the install above. I tried to snap as many as I could. None of the finished product, which I can add if anyone wants. But shows where I ran wires/installed the amp as I did the work. Everything I did, I tried to zip into place.

One thing I learned is that I need to slow down. When trying to tap into the correct reverse signal wire under the dash to signal to the radio that the vehicle is in reverse (to turn the backup cam on) I was using a multimeter. Instead of checking for continuity to my reserve light, I checked for DC voltage and blew the fuse. I was lucky that's all I did. Replaced the fuse, then smacked myself upside the head for doing that and checked continuity from where I spliced into the line with a quick splice and the rear taillight's reverse positive lead. Lesson learned there.

Very happy with my results. I need to pull the power pack and tune the low pass filters for the speakers. When things open back up I'm also going to take the blank plug between the DC outlets on the front console to a truck accesories/car audio store and have them mount the usb input to the blank plug so it looks nice and clean. For now, it's just pulled out and the wire is sticking out. Baby steps though!

Thanks for everyone's guidance in this endeavor!
 
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