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How can I install a subwoofer if the car stereo does not have an output ?

Hi all, thanks for reading my question!

I have a subwoofer and amplifier from my older car and would like to install them for my new car (Toyota Highlander). The CD stereo is the original stock, and I have already taken it out of the dashboard and checked what optional outputs it has on the back. It actually did not have a subwoofer output. When I asked car audio staff at Best Buy, he said that we can use a splitter (I am not sure if it is correct) and get the cable hooked up from the speakers on the door.

I know if I take my car to car audio shops, I can get it done fast. But I dnt want to leave my car for a few days because I need to drive it everyday. Have someone done this before ? Is there any website that instruct the installation or sell the splitter I have mentioned before ? Thank you, all!

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8 Responses to “How can I install a subwoofer if the car stereo does not have an output ?”

  1. evil_rondy said :

    Actually, probably 99.9% of factory radios have no low-level outputs (I had a Mazda MX-6 once that did).

    1) You can use what is called “high-level” inputs that many (especially lower-cost) amps feature. This is usually a plug with four wires for connecting directly to existing speaker outputs, usually to the positive and negative of a left and a right speaker. You can do this either at the speakers or behind the radio.

    2) Connect a high-to-low adapter, which connects just like the high-level inputs, but drops the signal to a lower level first and uses an RCA cable to connect to the amp.

  2. Chuck G said :

    There are a couple of different ways this can be done, and they are generally based on how you wire the amp and the setup you’re going for with the speakers. Most commonly amps are 2 or 4 channel, If it’s 2 channel, you would run the speaker wire from the first channel to your speakers and the second channel to your sub one of two ways. If the amp has a built in crossover you would set it to eliminate the highs over the frequency range you want the sub to hit, or you would install an inline crossover between the amp and the sub, it doesn’t have to be a costly electronic one, an inexpensive one does the trick, but how little you want to spend should be based on how much the other stuff is worth and the quality of the component. The crossover info will stay the same with a 4 channel amp too, if it’s a 4 channel amp, you would use the first two channels for your in car speakers, maybe 1 channel for front and one channel for rear speakers or left/right, however, and the second set of channels bridged to the sub (if the amp can handle that). Bridge it by running the pos from one channel to the sub and the neg back to the other channel. Set the crossover accordingly and you’re set. I hope this helps you.

  3. nwmech221 said :

    how attached are you to your factory stereo? in the interest of a better sounding system, i’d recomend saving yourself some time and while you’ve got the deck out, replace it with an aftermarket item. the factory radios generally run less than 10w per speaker, which is lacking. add the cleanliness of rca outputs for the sub and it all justifies the hundred or so bucks.
    if you want to keep the factory stereo, you will need a signal wire and audio output along with power and ground. do you trust yourself to start probing and soldering wires in your nice new car? if so, splicing wires for the output signal means cutting the insulation off the existing speaker wires and soldering your new signal wires (18 ga should be ok) to them. if you also lack a signal wire, you can find an ignition hot(key on) wire coming off the fuse panel. ideally you’d be finding a spare fuse slot and installing a spade with an inline fuse. less than an amp. the power wire (4 ga) is fused to the battery. 40 amps is common.
    have fun.

  4. peachytreezie said :

    you need a spliter or an aftermarket stereo

  5. mrpioneer407 said :

    hey lookey here best buy is right but i got a better idea how bout u get a hi-low inverter where u can connet to the rear speakers from the back of the radio which i can give u where wire code so after u connet the hi-low inverter u have a pair of rca jack right behind your radio !! i have 3 different of hi-low adapters so feel free to email me

    [email protected]

  6. sparky3489 said :

    (sigh) They’re called LOC or Line-Out-Converters and you can find one at Wal-Mart.

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