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How to Hook Up An Amp Without RCA Jacks: 3 Easy Methods!

The head units or the speakers may not always contain an RCA jack. But it doesn’t mean you can’t connect an amp to your head unit. Luckily, you can easily install an amp without RCA jacks by yourself. 

How to hook up an amp without RCA jacks? 

You can use RCA wire plugs as an adapter. They’re easiest to install and don’t harm the sound quality at all. The high input of the amplifier is also a great option. This requires some routing and rewiring but is easily doable. Other than that, you can also use a LOC as a medium to connect an amplifier.  

Anyhow, that was just a short answer. I have further elaborated on each of these methods for you. 

Stay with me if you want to know more about amplifiers and RCA jacks. 

Installing an Amplifier Without RCA Jacks: 3 Quick Solutions

Lacking RCA jacks don’t deem your head unit or speaker totally useless. There are multiple ways to increase the overall power and quality of your speakers. 

One such option is the usage of an amplifier. 

Note that you’ll also need a good set of speakers to enjoy the benefits. Connecting 4 speakers to 2 channel amps is such an option that people consider often. 

The RCA jacks are one of the best and cleanest connections ever. Pretty much any medium to high range sound system utilizes RCA wires to keep it clean. 

It also helps retain the sound quality intact. All of these benefits make RCA wires the best way to connect an amplifier.

There are mainly 3 different ways to connect an amplifier to a speaker. You can use an RCA adapter which can be a speaker to amplifier connection. 

There are also converters and amplifier inputs that you can take advantage of. All of these methods are easy to install and you can do it by yourself. 

You can also split an RCA for multiple amps if you want to. All you need is enough knowledge prior to the installation. 

To keep everything simple, I have explained all the methods in multiple steps. 

Simply sit back, relax and follow the steps one by one. And you’ll be done in no time.  

Method 1: Use an RCA Adapter As a Medium

An adapter is always the best alternative to a direct connection. Adapters even let you connect to more than one device.

There can be multiple forms of RCA adapters. But RCA wire plugs are mostly used. These let you connect an RCA wire to any speaker or a head unit. 

Step 1: Connect the Wire Plug To the Rear Speaker

The best way to do it is to connect the adapter to your car’s rear speaker. It can be any speaker of your choice. 

But the rear speaker is the easiest. 

Step 2: Plug the Adapter Into the Amplifier

After that, all that’s left is to plug the adapter into the amplifier’s RCA cable input. And voila! You can now immediately utilize your amplifier right away. 

Play a song to check if there’s any change in sound quality or not. 

It’s easy to be confused about which RCA adapters to buy and which to avoid. I have listed some of my favorite RCA wire plugs for you-

Product 1
Product 2
Product 3

Simply choose what you like and your job will be done! 

If the audio quality isn’t up to your expectation, you can try tweaking settings. There are many equalizer settings that optimize car audio’s bass

Method 2: Use a High Tier Amp Input

Speakers that are factory-made don’t have inputs for a pre-amp or an RCA jack. This is only a problem if your unit is quite old. 

That’s why the amplifiers often have high-level input that utilizes a higher voltage. 

Step 1: Disconnect the Battery’s Negative Terminal

Connecting an amplifier through a high input is quite easy. But make sure the battery’s negative terminal is disconnected. 

Because otherwise, there’s a high chance of probable short circuits. 

Step 2: Route the Red & Blue Wires

You’ll need to connect the amplifier’s red wire to the firewall of your vehicle. Red wire means power. 

After that, route it nicely to the battery. When you’re done, connect the wires to the fuse holder. Then mount the fuse holder to make the connection firm and secure. 

Take the blue wires and route them nicely to the amplifier. Make sure the wires don’t seem bothersome. 

Step 3: Connect the Speakers

This part requires a little bit of stripping and soldering. But regardless, they’re easy to do. 

You’ll need to strip the vehicle speaker’s left and right wires. Then you’ll have to splice the wires up to make them reach the amp. 

Afterwards, simply route and connect them to the amplifier. Check if they’re working properly or not. 

Sometimes, speakers don’t play anything despite the amplifier working correctly. 

Method 3: Install a Line Output Converter (LOC) 

A line output converter converts the speaker signal to a preamp level. This works as an adapter and is the same as RCA wire plugs.

Find the speaker wires that indicate left and right. After that, strip the wire and connect it with LOC’s channel wires respectively. Solder the wires when you’re done. 

All that’s left is to secure the LOC firmly and then connect the RCA cables. After connecting them, run the cables to the amps to complete the connection. 

No matter which steps you followed, you’ll need to adjust the amplifier’s gain. Start from mid settings and gradually adjust until you hear no distortion. 

After that, test the speaker to finish the procedure. 


Question: Do factory stereos have RCA outputs?

Answer: No, the factory stereos don’t have any RCA outputs. That’s why most of them require an adapter to run the RCA jacks. Luckily, RCA adapters are cheaper and easier to install. 

Question: Can you make your own RCA cables?

Answer: You can make some RCA cables by yourself but it’s not easy. But commercial RCA cables are cheap and easily affordable. You’ll also need to know soldering to be able to make them. 

Question: Can yellow RCA be used for audio?

Answer: Yes you can use a yellow RCA wire for audio connection. In general, most RCA cables are just the same. Simply choose an RCA cable and you’re good! 

Final Thoughts

That was everything on how to hook up an amp without RCA jacks. I sincerely hope that these were enough to satisfy your curiosity. 

If you’re struggling to follow any of those mentioned methods above don’t worry. In such cases, it’s best to contact a nearby expert who specializes in wiring. 

Finally, have a great day and happy wiring!