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Car Radio bench test procedure and special equipment???

I want to bench test a radio before putting it in my car. It is for a Jag and a major pain to take apart the dash and I have the code for the radio. How can I be sure it works?
I have a 12 volt power supply and a 3.5 amp power supply,
test meter but don't know how to attach a speaker, whether I need to rig an antenna, and I am willing to pay for a clear diagram and instructions on how to do this .....

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  • Mark Glawdecki Feb 15, 2009

    More help needed but a good start.

  • Mark Glawdecki Feb 15, 2009

    The actual radio for a Jag in the year in question is a Clarion radio with 6 speakers, built in amp, and cassette player. My problem is that I want to set up a way to test a replacement on my test bench.
    I have a 12 Volt power source, a 3,5 amp power source but do I need to set up an antenna and how do I arrange a ground wire? ground to what?
    Ideally I am willing to pay for a sketch to get this et up properly. I have a test meter, volts/ohms etc .
    Solving the test bench picture above will let me test the radio without taking apart the dash on a Jag twice...

  • Mark Glawdecki Mar 13, 2009

    worked perfectly when I followed the instructions and combined the yellow and red...thank you very much


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Hi and welcome to FixYa,

Could you post back the exact model of the Alpine radio/head unit pls? It would also help if you know what was originally installed in your vehicle, if there is an external amp and how many speakers are currently installed. Some high end vehicles also uses the car radios/stereos for alphanumeric displays, might this also be in your car's model?

Would appreciate postback. Good luck and thank you for using FixYa.

Posted on Feb 13, 2009

  • Louie  Role
    Louie Role Feb 15, 2009

    Appreciate the post back. Without a specific model, what I can provide are the commonly used color of the wiring of Clarion models. Pls refer to the wiring diagram below.

    White = Left Front +
    White/Black = Left Front –

    Gray = Right Front +
    Gray/Black = Right Front –

    Green = Left Rear +
    Green/Black = Left Rear-

    Violet = Right Rear +
    Violet/Black = Right Rear –

    Yellow 14ga = Battery Main/Memory
    Yellow 18ga = Battery CeNET Power/Memory
    Red = Accessory (ignition on)
    Black = Ground
    Blue = Antenna Turn On +
    Blue/White = Remote Turn On (amps) +
    Orange/White = Dimmer
    Brown = Phone Mute
    Orange or Mint Green= Parking Brake Video Lockout
    White/Red = CCD (camera) input instant on +

    RCA Cables:
    Gray = Front Output
    Black = Rear Output
    Purple = Non-Fade or Subwoofer Output

    Incidentally, for an antenna any piece/length of wire (plugged into the antenna port) would serve the purpose of bench testing. The ground is also the black wire which normally is connected to the chassis of the radio.


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All you can do is trace the wiring back from the radio to the speakers, there is no quick fix here. To test the speakers touch a battery to the two contacts, the speaker will pop if it is any good.

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