Saturday, June 2, 2012

Rare Old School Rockford Fosgate Power 1000 Mosfet Terminator Edition Amplifier

est. 1990 Rockford Fosgate Power 1000 Mosfet "Terminator Edition" Amplifier designed by Wayne Harris

Let us take a journey back to the year 1989...Car audio had been around for a while, but with amplifiers such as the HiFonics Colossus, Linear Power 8002 and Rockford Fosgate Power 1000, things were really getting serious. Wayne Harris, one of the pioneers of modern car stereos, was hired by Rockford Corporation and was given the task of swapping out his amps in the "Terminator Hearse" with the Power 1000 Mosfets. Wayne was kind enough to send an email describing the beginnings of the 1000C:

"If I recall correctly, I went to work for Rockford in July of 1989. One of my first tasks was to upgrade the equipment I was using in the Terminator. Rockford gave me 6 each Power 1000 amplifiers. Unfortunately, they were too long to fit in my car. I took the sheet metal for each amp to a machine shop and had them cut off the “caboose”. This made the amp about 6 inches shorter. (Now the amps would fit in my amp rack.) I then designed an LED bargraph meter display and installed these displays within the MAIN housing of the amplifiers. The final step was to chrome plate the amp shroud and then apply custom silkscreen.

The VP of marketing (Jerry Cave) saw the amps in my car prior to the 1990 CES show in Las Vegas. He like the amps in my car so much that he decided to make all Power 1000 amps look the same."

As many of you old schooler's know, Wayne Harris' Terminator Hearse is a legend in car audio. If you haven't seen it, take the time to view the video of this beast from 1985 from dBDragUSA's YouTube channel...can you say 30" subwoofer?

Sorry for the side track, I'll try to stay on subject here. The Rockford Fosgate Power 1000 Mosfet "Terminator Edition" (from now on we'll refer to as the 1000C) was a step forward in design from the original Power 1000 Mosfet, which was introduced around 1987. The internals were identical except for the LED meter and removal of the "caboose". The 1000C's chrome appearance and $2650 US MSRP meant this amp was not for your average 16 year old getting a new was for serious competitors and those who got had the means to buy such an expensive amplifier. Many Rockford dealers had one or more of these amps in their demo vehicles and most of us could only dream of owning such an amp.

RF T1000 vs. Orion Concept 97.3

The 1000C is a four-channel, class A/B amplifier with no internal crossovers. See detailed specs below:

  • Power Ratings 2 Channels (Bridged): 500 watts x 2 channels from 20-20,000Hz with less than 0.1% THD
  • Power Ratings 4 Channels4 Ohms: 150 watts x 4 channels from 20-20,000Hz with less than 0.05% THD; 2 Ohms: 250 watts x 4 channels from 20-20,000Hz with less than 0.1% THD
  • Frequency Response: 20-100,000Hz +0.5dB, -3.0dB
  • Damping Factor: At circuit board: Over 200 (referred to 4 ohms); At speaker fuse: Over 50 (referred to 4 ohms)
  • Signal to Noise Ratio: Over 80dB Unweighted
  • Instantaneous Peak Output Current: Over 100 Amperers 
  • Protection: The Power 1000 is protected by analog computer output protection circuitry and a 100A fuse. A thermal sensor shuts down the amplifier in case of overheating
  • Dimensions: 22.75" L x 7.4" W x 3.75" H
  • Weight: 21lbs
  • MSRP: $2650 US (1991)

Here is an informational email I received directly from Rockford Fosgate when I inquired about the 1000c Terminator Edition amp:

“The T1000’s went from the black painted and silkscreened ones with the caboose (that covered the 6ga B+ & Gnd terminal block), then to the black painted and silkscreened ones that no longer had the caboose and just had the one B+ and two GND cables hanging out of it.  Then it migrated into a chrome fan shroud.  That’s about the time that Wayne Harris came on board with designing the LED output meter for the T1000’s.  Then probably in ’92-’93* is when the Terminator Edition hit the market with the special screening and LED display.  It was a very limited run….I think maybe only 100pcs or so.  I think Wayne had 10 of them for himself.”

(* I think the year range was '90-91 - BigDWiz)

See the unboxing and overview video below. More information coming as soon as I get the amp repaired and fully functional...

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Watch the video on YouTube in 1080P or embedded below:


Jonathan said...

Niiice! Congrats on finding your "Holy Grail"! Good luck on the repairs, hopefully they won't set you back too much. Looking forward to the bench test.

NipRing said...

I just picked up a Power 1000 on ebay but it was sold as is. Seller says it is untested, but for $50 BIN, i couldnt be smiling more. If i wanted to send it in for repair, do you have any suggestions as to where?

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