Tech Talk: Heat
Summer and Contest Season will be here before you know it and with it comes the heat. Heat is the number one killer of mobile audio equipment, so we should all take extra precaution when temperatures swell.
Thanks to the greenhouse effect, the interior of your vehicle can reach a temperature up to 25 degrees Fahrenheit hotter than the outside temperature. The same is true for enclosed amp racks on boats. This means your amp may be starting out at 125+ degrees, before you even turn it on. This is just a couple of rocking songs away from thermal protection, or worse, amp failure.
A simple and inexpensive way to provide some relief for your hard working equipment is to add a fan, or two, to your install. We recommend placing the fans as close as possible to the amplifier(s) allowing for maximum air movement down the rails of the heat sink. You can use a pair of small square computer style fans and set up a push/pull system, or you can use a high velocity cross flow fan. Both styles draw minimal amperage and can easily be ran off existing power sources already at the amp when used in conjunction with a simple relay turn on circuit.
Our tests averaged a 25 degree sustained temperature reduction at the heat sink, once we added a fan. This enabled our test amps to go from thermal protection after 15-20 minutes of play, to running under their thermal cutoff limits all day long. That made both us and our amps happy. So, have fun this Spring and Summer and stay cool!