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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So, as I said in this thread, I am documenting the install of a Rockville 10 inch sub-woofer in my 2006 RT Ridgeline.
I bought this RL almost a year ago. The original owner had put a decent Kenwood NAV unit in a few years ago, but left everything else bone-stock. Original paper cone speakers, obviously no low end being the RT. Ever since I bought it, I have been toying with the idea of adding a sub-woofer...but the idea of losing storage space under the seats kind of frustrated me. Plus I was not looking for anything earth shattering, I just wanted some low end to my music. I had thought about getting a factory sub but everyone on here has mentioned how mediocre they are and getting OEM was a little spendy compared to what I was planning. A few months ago, I randomly came across the Rockville 10 in powered sub (later on I found that a couple other people on these forums have also looked in to them, with one confirmed install) It has...mixed reviews online, but I was happy to take a shot at less than $120 for the sub if it was at least halfway decent and would keep from infringing on cargo space.

First, a list of what was used.

Rockford Fosgate 6.5 three way speakers (four total for doors)

Scosche speaker adapters (two per pack)

Hex head self drilling screws

Rockville 10" powered sub

Boss audio 4 gauge amp install kit

power distribution block

10 gauge wire

velcro tape

Honda speaker wire adapters

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I started with the door speakers. First thing to point out, if you are going with these 6.5 inch speakers, the speaker adapters have 5 tabs on the interior (three short, two long) that need to be snapped off. They are designed to do so. I did not notice at first and thought I was going to break the surround when I was pre-installing the first speaker.

I used this video as a guide for installing the door speakers.

Just so you are aware, if you have never removed your door before, you may want to invest in a pack of these trim retainer clips because I promise you will break a few during removal.

Here are some comparison images of the factory speaker up against the new-new

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Magnet envy. :LOL:

And a couple mid install..

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I ran these speakers by themselves for a few days before I tackled the sub install. I was shocked at how much of an upgrade on clarity and range just these brought to the table. But I had to press on and finish what I had started. A few days later I had a three day weekend and slowly (to avoid any mistakes) I started the final project.

I was worried about taking the rear seat out because all the posts I had read about it made it seem like some kind of hellish ordeal that would require two people. I was dreading it. Turns out, it was one of the easiest parts of this install. Flip the seats up and remove 6 plastic trim pieces around the seat hinges, locate the three 10mm bolts that hold the seatback in place, put the seat bottoms back down, remove the headrests and lift the seatback out. Easy peasy.
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The part that was less fun was ripping the whole dash apart to wire the remote turn on wire, RCA cables and remote bass control knob.

Again, this video was helpful in guidance on how to do that. No fun.

So, after that, I removed the door sill trims and ran my remote/bass knob wire down the driver side of the RL and my RCA audio down the passenger side. I got away with not having to remove the B pillar plastic and seat belt anchor by taping the wires to a coat hangar and feeding it through between the front and rear doors.

(Front passenger door)
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(Rear passenger door) (don't worry, I zip-tied them after)
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(Driver door)
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(rear driver side door)
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Continued in next post...
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Continued from previous post....

Now...time to test sub placement. I have to say, This sub almost seems like it was made specifically for the Ridgeline. Its dimensions are almost too perfect. 12.4" x 13.4" x 2.7". It fit right into the left cutout and I did not have to remove any carpet to make it fit.

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Things were looking good, so on to running power

Now you may have noticed that I got a 4 gauge amp install kit, but also 10 gauge wiring. The reason is that the Rockville sub power and ground receptacles are 10 gauge, but I wanted the power as clean as I could get. My goal was to have as little resistance as I could in the power wire right up until it reached the amp/sub. so I ran the 4 gauge from the battery through the firewall in the upper driver side corner. I had to poke a hole first and then used a little avocado oil (I am an OG millennial at 37 years old...most everything I own is avocado based) to make it easier to feed the wire through. I wanted a lubricant that would dissipate over time. Worked like a charm.
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Ran the wire down the driver side,

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About a foot away from the speaker, I used that power distribution block to step down to the 10 gauge wire. Also used the 10 gauge to ground the unit to the back wall behind the carpeting (using the self tapping screws I bought for the door speakers). Finally, to secure the sub, I used the Velcro tape. One across the bottom, facing down, and another strip along the back facing the rear wall. It worked well enough that I wanted to slightly re position the speaker and I couldn't move it. Oh well, I guess it stays where it wants to.

I powered up the truck and everything came on. I adjusted levels on the sub and then put everything back together in reverse and I have to say, I am quite pleased with my stealth install.

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Sound review:

Overall, I am happy with the end product...but my expectations were not that high either. I have had larger subs with a hell of a lot more power pumping through them and you get what you expect in that situation. With this sub, it hits mid bass notes with a vengeance, but lacks the super low range. Considering that the box is less than three inches deep though, I am kind of shocked at its overall performance. It helps if you have a head unit with a built in crossover that allows you to filter certain frequencies to the door speakers and other ones to the sub. Time will tell if this sub will last or not, but at $120 a pop, if I get a year out of it and then it blows, I will just buy another one and look at it like any other routine car maintenance. Small price to pay for better than factory sound without giving up under seat storage. I give it 4 out of 5 stars...good all around, but wish it could push the lowest of low notes.

I hope this write up helps someone with their install. let me know if you have any questions on what I did/steps I skipped over and I will do my best to answer them. otherwise, keep truckin and bumpin!
 

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Thanks for the detailed write up. The sub looks like a good option for the GenI behind the seat installs. I haven't added a subwoofer yet to my 14 Sport's upgraded sound system. Your write up is nudging me towards taking the next step. . .

Looks like the sub has high level inputs with auto ON/OFF built in. I suppose you could have avoided taking the dash apart and tied into one of you speakers for the high level inputs.
 

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Nice writeup, great pics, always good to end up with an upgrade that makes you happy, congrats! (y)

I don't see what fuse is included with the Boss 4-ga amp wiring kit, usually such kits include a fuse appropriate for the included (in this case 4-ga) wire. Since you transition from 4-ga to 10-ga using a non-fused distro block I urge you to ensure that the fuse at the battery is sized appropriate for the much smaller 10-ga wire in your power feed circuit.

That's not a problem, as you probably know the purpose of the fuse at the battery is to protect the wire and thereby the vehicle from fire risk. A fuse should always be rated appropriate for the smallest-gauge wire used in the circuit it is protecting.

The use of a fuse appropriate for the 10-ga wire won't limit the "clean" power to the powered sub any more than the 10-ga wire itself - noting that the powered sub has a 25-amp fuse, that's the (nominal) most it will demand anyway as long as everything is working as it should.

In this case, while the 4-ga wire might be rated up to ~125Amps, the 10-ga wire should be limited to ~30Amps, and the circuit having that wire fused accordingly (at 30Amps the line-loss through the 4-ga wire will be essentially zero). A useful resource perhaps of interest is this webpage.

Hopefully there will never be a short or problem that calls that fuse into 'play', just want to help ensure you (and your readers) have the best protection for your RL 'in case' (after all, that's the whole purpose of fuses). ;)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Nice writeup, great pics, always good to end up with an upgrade that makes you happy, congrats! (y)

I don't see what fuse is included with the Boss 4-ga amp wiring kit, usually such kits include a fuse appropriate for the included (in this case 4-ga) wire. Since you transition from 4-ga to 10-ga using a non-fused distro block I urge you to ensure that the fuse at the battery is sized appropriate for the much smaller 10-ga wire in your power feed circuit.

That's not a problem, as you probably know the purpose of the fuse at the battery is to protect the wire and thereby the vehicle from fire risk. A fuse should always be rated appropriate for the smallest-gauge wire used in the circuit it is protecting.

The use of a fuse appropriate for the 10-ga wire won't limit the "clean" power to the powered sub any more than the 10-ga wire itself - noting that the powered sub has a 25-amp fuse, that's the (nominal) most it will demand anyway as long as everything is working as it should.

In this case, while the 4-ga wire might be rated up to ~125Amps, the 10-ga wire should be limited to ~30Amps, and the circuit having that wire fused accordingly (at 30Amps the line-loss through the 4-ga wire will be essentially zero). A useful resource perhaps of interest is this webpage.

Hopefully there will never be a short or problem that calls that fuse into 'play', just want to help ensure you (and your readers) have the best protection for your RL 'in case' (after all, that's the whole purpose of fuses). ;)
Indeed. I actually put a fuse at the distribution block as well. I had a bunch of random blade fuse holders and I wanted to leave to ability to power something else later if I wanted (maybe a small inverter in back? not sure yet). But good explanation on safety. Thank you. The reason I started out with 4 gauge is in my experience, a lot of these cheaper amp wiring kits do not use the highest quality wire. Plus the length needed for the Ridgeline can present a voltage drop (minimal) over that distance with 10 gauge. I am the master of overkill sometimes.
 

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All understood, sounds like you're 'on top of it' to me.

I'm afraid that not all readers share your solid understanding of 'fusing' best practices.

Personally, I'd fuse for 30Amps at the battery until more demand is added at the distro block. Too many folks don't understand that using a fuse rated lower than the wire capacity has absolutely no downside as long as the fuse can handle the total device demands at the end of the wire.

The practice of 'using lowest rating needed' fuses does increase safety by further minimizing fire risk, and while perhaps "overkill", that's an overkill I'm inclined to go with, especially for connections direct-to-battery (the battery being capable of trying to dump many hundreds of amps in short order (pardon the pun) if a fault-to-ground occurs).
 
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All understood, sounds like you're 'on top of it' to me.

I'm afraid that not all readers share your solid understanding of 'fusing' best practices.

Personally, I'd fuse for 30Amps at the battery until more demand is added at the distro block. Too many folks don't understand that using a fuse rated lower than the wire capacity has absolutely no downside as long as the fuse can handle the total device demands at the end of the wire.

The practice of 'using lowest rating needed' fuses does increase safety by further minimizing fire risk, and while perhaps "overkill", that's an overkill I'm inclined to go with, especially for connections direct-to-battery (the battery being capable of trying to dump many hundreds of amps in short order (pardon the pun) if a fault-to-ground occurs).
I will take your advice at pop a 30 amp AGU fuse in on the battery side until I expand the electrical needs. Thanks for covering my booty. :giggle:

Looks like the sub has high level inputs with auto ON/OFF built in. I suppose you could have avoided taking the dash apart and tied into one of you speakers for the high level inputs.
Yes...but if you ever want to adjust the subs crossover you would have to take the seat out again. with the RCA install you can remotely change levels to the sub from the head unit/filter frequencies. So with the RCA plug install, I set the subs input level to its highest frequency and then stepped it down to an appropriate level on the stereo-side.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Well, it has been almost two years since I originally posted this. The Rockville sub has continued working like a champ with no issues, but in several days I will be adding content. I purchased a second of the same sub and we are going to find out if I can make it fit back there. If one is good, two is better, right? Stay tuned to see if I am a genius or if I make horrible life decisions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So, I finished the job. The second sub fit with no space to spare...

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As you can see, I was able to get it just to the right of the center seatbelt housing. It had to be snuggly shoved behind that metal seat bracket on the right.

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You can see here, zoomed in, that it actually shaved some plastic off the front 😳

Don't need to go over install as that was discussed at the start of this thread two years ago, I will list what parts were used to expand the system though.

First, two power distribution blocks. One to distribute 12 volt power to each sub, the other to distribute the 12v remote power-on cord.

Distribution block

Next was a 6 pin phone line splitter so I could control both subs with a single remote.

phone line splitter

Also two short 6 pin phone cords

Phone cords

Two pack of RCA cords

RCA cords

Finally, I did order some 8 gauge wiring to run from the power distribution block to both subs, also used it as grounding wire for the new sub.

12 V sub power wire


Overall, I am happier than I expected. Notes that I could not hear with just one of these are coming in fairly clear, now that the speaker surface area has doubled. Mid bass notes hit a little too hard and I have to back it off a bit, but really low notes are perceptible now. I would say that with two, I now have full range on the low end.

I know that there are all kinds of ways to install much higher end systems under the rear seats, but I did not want to give up floor storage space. Unless someone has a half hour of time and tools, there is not a good way for someone to break in and steal these as well (if they were even aware they were there).

All in all, I am still happy (happier) with this set up. I will still recommend it as an option for G1 owners who either do not have the factory sub or want to upgrade/replace their factory sub on higher trim levels.
 

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