Diagnosing Audio Troubles

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Posted by Jason Hartberger on V6SHO 10 Jul 07

The SHO audio system is fairly complicated, from a factory-audio point of view. The sound goes out the head unit, through the CD player through a little patch cable, back into the head unit, out the head unit again to the silver "honking unit" on the right of the back of the trunk, which is an amplifier, and out to the speakers. There is another cable that comes out of the silver amp, across the trunk to the black amp on the left, and that's the subwoofer amp. That outputs to the subwoofer mounted on the top of the trunk in the big gray plastic case.

Now that you (hopefully) know how the signal gets to the speakers, we can start troubleshooting. The problem is probably not in your speakers, since it seems unlikely that all four + the subwoofer would have blown out. It sounds to me like one of your connectors worked itself loose. Do you know how to pull the head unit out? If not, it's pretty easy. You go to advance auto parts, or autozone, and pick yourself up a set of Ford Stereo Remover Tools. There's two in a box, and they're shaped like large Us with little balls at the end. You shove those into the holes on either side of the head unit, push each U outboard, and pull towards you. Take a look at the back of the head unit. There should be a silver 6-pin connector on the far right (as you look at the back); that's the one that goes to the CD player. It has to be in for anything to work. There's another 8-pin connector; that's the sound output to the amp. Your power is fine if you can see the displays and everything.

If everything is ok there, reinsert the head unit, then pull out the CD player. There will be two connectors; the same silver 6-pin and a power connector. Is the 6-pin connector secure? If it is, that's not the problem. Re-insert the CD player.

Now go to the trunk. On the right side of the silver amp is the input connector for the speakers. Check that. Check all the connectors, actually. Wiggle them around, try to pull on them gently to see if they come out, etc. Same with the black amp on the other side.

If it's none of those things, and it still doesn't work, then the problem is obviously not in the connectors!