Question about Jl Audio 500/1 Car Audio Amplifier

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Amp not functioning right

My jl 500/1 works when volume is low, but once i turn it up a little more the subs hit but not hard at all. it doesnt quite cut out but it sounds like there is little power coming from the amp to the subs. It worked for 4 weeks fine and all the sudden stopped. what could it be?

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  • rsmith2 Oct 12, 2008

    nah thats not it. and nothing has changed. I had a kenwood amp with the two kicker subs for almost three years and it blew out. i got the jl and it worked for 4 weeks. The subs are 8 ohm and were connected in series. does that have anything to do with it? do you know if there is a fuse inside the jl amp that i might have blown for having too much resistance.

  • Inno Laur May 11, 2010

    Has anything changed in your system, anything at all?
    Try adjusting your balance all the way to the left or all the way to the right and turning it up, let me know the result.


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Test the subs. i had this amp on 2 ma audio 12s and it smoked them real quick

Posted on Apr 01, 2010

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Check the wires for a lose connection or corrosion. You may need a capacitor.

Basically, at low power the amplifier is not asking for a lot of power from the electrical system to power your sub woofer. For lack of a better term and probably the best way to explain it is. It uses up all the power in the wires leading to it at a high volume, and has to wait for more. Kind of like when someone squeezes a garden hoseAmp not functioning right - 2_bing.gif when your trying to use it. That would be the high volume, starving the amplifier. The capacitor stores power in it to power the amp at high volume. 2 farads would probably be bulletproof on a single amplifier system, but 1 farad should work well enough. Or seek help from an expert on exactly what size capacitor you should use. If you find yourself saying: My amp cuts out.

If this assisted in solving your problem, please take the time to rate it. Thank you.

Posted on Mar 03, 2010

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1 Answer

I have a couple of questions regarding my jl 500/1. the first question: i just transferred my amp/subs (subs are JL W3s) to a new vehicle, and the place i had install it switched the "high/low"...


ok..well theres a lot of question in there, lemme take a shot at it.

the hi/low switch explained: the hi/low switch tells the amp what signal voltage is being delivered to the amp...hi-power (4-15volts) or low-power(micro-volts). Your aftermarket head unit had what are called pre-outs (or preAmp outs) meaning the source signal (your music) is not amplified before being delivered to the amplifier...sooo...your amplifier setting for your aftermarket radio would be 'low' to tell the amp that the music source being sent to it is low-voltage.

Typically a manufacturers radio will not have pre-outs, they will be amplified by the radios internal amp to anywhere from 4volts on up, and you need to tell your jl audio amp that the source music being supplied is 'hi' voltage.

soo...of course...if you are sending 10volts to the amplifier and tell it that your sending micro-volts (low setting) your amp will over-amplify the signal and thus the overwhelming bass you experienced.

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Check The Settings On The Amp.... There Is Probably a Setting Turned All The Way To Max on it. Is There 2 Rca Cables Hooked to It ? Try Switching them around And Seeing if It Gets Better Or Un Plug one of them And See if It Gets Any Better, Would Definitely Check The Settings On The Amp First to See if That your Problem. Hope This Helps :-)

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Sounds like a bad rca connection. You need both rca jacks to be plugged in from your head unit, both left and right or you will not have full power you'll have half power to your sub/subs. Check your sub with a volt meter and see what it reads. Make sure if your head unit has a sub volume make sure it's turned up. Alot of people don't realize they have a seperate subwoofer volume on there deck and it's set to low, so check that. You could have bad rca cables. If all that is ruled out(best way by trying a different amp) the amp itself might be having problems. Don't think it would be in protect mode either.
Let me know if you have'nt allready.

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I have a 500/1 mono jl audio amp and two w3 10" woofers, every time my bass hits hard my low ohm light will flicker on and off but the light doesn't stay on to long it only flickers every time the bass...


not really a problem, your just running a the threshold of the amps comfort zone, a lil trick to raise your impedance a little bit its to run an additional 10 feet of wire before your sub, (longer the wire the more resistance) 10 feet should jump you up about .5 ohms. you wont hear the difference but your amp will fill it, and run a little better. 20 feet will give you right around 1 ohm. now if you dont mind loosing some power run the subs in series and then run them bridged. your amp will work harder, but run easier because its on a big open loop. but before all this take a multi meet and read out your voice coils to see what the ohm level is, then read out what it is at the speaker, then you will see 1. if the subs are okay, and 2. how much you need to raise your impedance for you amp to run comfortably.

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1 Answer

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number one did you install the subs youreself..it could be you have a double coil not installed right for full potential connect red to red and black to black on the back of youre spkr but if its a regular coil dont worrie about it ,,and also set amp to low pass and also bridge it so it would reach full potential .

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I would try running the subs in parallel. Pos to Pos Dual Voice, Neg to Neg Dual Voice. Then Run + to + stereo - to - stereo on both channels.
So you have + and - running to one channel and + and - running to the other channel.
Also your LPF filter could be set too high.

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Make sure that you are using the right Guage wire for that installation. I had the same problem with another amp. I changed both, power & ground wires to 4 Guage and it worked fine after that. maybe that would work for you.

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