why do head units clip - Realm of Excursion



Head Units / Processors / Car Audio Electronics Discuss anything about head units, processors, and other car audio electronics.

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Old 06-16-2014   #1 (permalink)
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Default why do head units clip

what causes a head unit to clip? Why do some not clip and some do clip?
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Old 06-16-2014   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

just depends on manufacturers rattings and how they rate them....pioneer tests there head units to clipping and the RCA voltage at 0 sub level...meanwhile kenwood rates there head units at 75% volume and RCA voltage at maximum level on sub level..so im not sure about others but you get the picture
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Old 06-17-2014   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

chain is only as strong as it's weakest link......quality in quality out.
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Old 06-17-2014   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

Yeah but like, when you are at 34/40 for example and it doesn't clip, then you turn it up to 35/40 and it does clip, what is happening?
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Old 06-17-2014   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

internal components are being pushed to their limit.
could be weak or low quality components, or bad design
the source material could also be the cause....bad mp3 or cd with low quality recordings
i think pioneer has a bunch that didn't clip at full tilt.
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Old 06-17-2014   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

The reason I'm asking is because I want to make a clip detector light that comes on when your head unit is clipping. Do you think the distortion is detectable or is it purely mechanical?
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Old 06-17-2014   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

Distortion is decectabke but you got to have a smd dd1 or a o s ope to detect that
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Default Re: why do head units clip

because music is dynamic it would be tough to have a clipping detector that would be accurate. for tones they are useful but i think their use for music is very limited
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Old 06-17-2014   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

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Old 07-30-2014   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

Clipping is when a signal goes beyond its limits, and squares off. Think about how a nice sinusoidal sound wave looks, nice and round. There is a certain amount of amplitude it can reach before it cant go any higher. This is called the ceiling and the space between the wave and ceiling is called headroom. The wave hits a ceiling on the way up and cant go any farther, so it flattens out as it continues on its oscillation until it starts its journey in the other direction (back down). Think of a sine wave and then give it a buzz cut. That is what clipping is. In this realm it is mostly not desirable, however, in the professional realm, some clipping is a goal for the engineer. Mastering engineers intentionally clip really high end processors to get the color, sound, and level they want. These processors they use are large expensive units, costing over 5 figures sometimes, designed to do one thing really well. Your HU is a small device designed to do lots of things pretty ok. It does not have room to house the proper components to have the same properties, so it does not handle damage control on the sine wave as well as is possible, in fact often it ends up mangling the signal.
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Old 08-12-2014   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: why do head units clip

any head unit will clip..
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Old 10-29-2014   #12 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by snow0707 View Post
any head unit will clip..
Not true, at least for the rca outputs, I have had some that were built well and had plenty of head room on their rca's. My old Panasonic HU did not clip at max volume playing a cd with test tones on it with the sw controls at max... distortion yes clip no. Set like that it would show a bit of "ripple" in the wave but only on the rise and fall the top of the wave was still nice and round... by ripple I mean a non linear rise and fall, like you get when you play say a 60 & 90hz tone at the same time.
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