Using a large inverter while car is in motion?

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Mr Turtle

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I am wanting to power my xbox 360 slim and play it while the car is in motion. I like to play it in the car while we are on long road trips. I have a simple 150w inverter that plugs into a 12v socket. I was able to plug my xbox into that inverter and it powered my xbox. When I would play the xbox for about an hour, both the xbox and the inverter would experience extreme overheating to the point where my xbox wont power on until it is cooled or the inverter wont work until it is cooled down. The inverter was given to me by my mother and I simply hooked everything up to it and played, but I now know that I was dumb for not looking into it to see if it would cause problems. It powered the xbox, so I assumed it worked just fine. Now I am trying to look for a proper inverter and how I can hook one up to my car (and please dont bash me over my ignorance).

But anyways, here is what I have gathered:

My xbox will require about 370w to 470w and will draw 3.7 amps.

My screen that I use runs of off DC and draws 0.8 amps. This doesnt need an inverter since I can plug it into another 12v socket.

My car manual says that the 12v sockets can handle a maximum of 10 amps. It doesnt say anything about a watt limit.

From my understanding, I will need an inverter that is around 500w. I have looked around for an inverter about this size and was around $50. I found one at home depot that was 500w. The inverter sayed that it will only be 100w if plugged into a 12v socket, but it will be 500w when hooked up directly to the battery. I decided not to buy it.

Now here is my big question: Is there an inverter around 500w that I can plug directly into a 12v socket? OR is it possible to hook an inverter up to the battery when the car is in motion? I am thinking that there could possibly be a way i could string the cables from the battery to the cabin of the car where I would plug things into the inverter.

Any help is appreciated!

(And just to clear this up, I am well aware of the risks involved with the xbox scratching up disks. I actually dont use disks though, I have all of my games downloaded onto the hard drive. And i already have a well ventilated area in my car for my xbox).

:)
 

kanewolf

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No. As your 12V socket says, 10A. That is 120W. That is why the 500W inverter says it only supports 100W when plugged into a 12VDC outlet. To power everything you want you will have to directly connect to the battery. You could run cables from the engine compartment. This is what is done for high powered stereo amps. You have to handle 40+ amps to get your 500W. You are going to want #8 (8 gauge) wire to connect to the battery. Terminate in the passenger compartment with a quick disconnect like this -- https://powerwerx.com/anderson-sb-connectors-sb50-50amp?gclid=CLOs057XuNMCFYS3wAodo00OLA You can solder the connector instead of having to crimp.

Your Xbox uses 3.7A at 120VAC -- So multiply by 10 or 12 when you drop to 12VDC.
 

mrmike_49

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Watts= Amps x Volts, so 500 watts>> 10amps x 12 volts, those 12V sockets only provide 120 Watts. I am surprised your XBOX worked in the first place if it draws 3.7 amps@ 110V (AC). A 500 W inverter would likely blow a fuse
 
Here's the math to show why the 12V socket/inverter won't work. Power = Voltage * Current, 12V * 10A = 120W. Thus, there's no way an inverter plugged into the 12V socket can power your Xbox. That's why your xbox and inverter were overheating. I'm not a car guy, but I don know that the battery is used to start the car. Then, when the engine is running, the alternator kicks in and supplies power for all the electronics in the car. So, a 120V inverter would need to be connected into this system thru the fuse box. Please don't connect anything up directly to the car battery - it's not safe! Hopefully, someone with automotive experience will add to this thread.
 
It doesn't consume anywhere near 370 Watts. The power brick for the Xbox 360 Slim is only rated to deliver 135 Watts.

Xbox 360 Slim (Valhalla) Power Consumption

System Off: 0.6 Watts
Idle @ Dashboard: 70.4 Watts
Halo 3: 87.0 Watts
Rockband 2: 82.7 Watts
Gears of War 2: 88 Watts
Red Dead Redemption: 90.4 Watts
 
A wattmeter is going to give you average power usage. Which as you show is a little under the max 120W a 12V auto inverter can supply. However, I guessing that the peak power is significantly higher. That's why the inverter and the xbox were heating up and hitting shut off.
 

Mr Turtle

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Thank you for the answers guys! I will probably have someone with expierience hook up an inverter to the battery for me.

I dont know if I read it wrong, but the power supply on the xbox says the input AC is 100 - 127V and 3.7A. (I corrected myself on the original post by saying it was 370w to 470w). Since Amps x Volts = Watts, then it would require the 370w to 470w? The power supply also says that the Output DC is 135w. Am I correct in the fact that the input AC is what is required to power it? Or does he 135w Output mean that I only need an inverter that is about 200w?

(Sorry im not too savvy with electricity)

Also, how much do you think it will cost for a mechanic of somesort or audio shop to install an inverter like this?

:)
 

mymutter

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since the output of the xbox inverter is 12 volts, start there. you might be able to do this a bit differently.

Now, the xbox really pulls up to 9.5 amps, not 3.5, so that is why the inverter is getting hot and stopping. you are asking it to pull double the amperage (and it's doing it for a short while, which is awesome).

either figure out if people have had success wiring it directly in, can it run on a max of 14.4 volts, etc, and if not, then a 2500 watt inverter directly wired to the battery properly will work great. as long as you have the electrical system to keep up with it. (also, don't run it without the car running)
 
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I agree with everything said but I might recommend that if you do this that you might want to get a performance alternator I have been reading around and you will really need one if your car is older but only if your drawing a lot of power also you have to keep in mind that your alternator is for powering all your electonics in your car, if you plan on drawing a lot of power you are going to want to get one. Also correct me if I am wrong but I don't know alternator wiring is rated too but you might want to get a bigger gauge if possible. Sorry for saying this 2 years after the last reply.
 

gggplaya

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Dude this thread is like 2 years old?????????

But for the OP's questions. You can simply buy an AMPLIFIER INSTALL KIT from any online retailer, best buy or anywhere that sells car audio equipment. I'm doubtful that the Xbox 360 really uses that much wattage. I looked it up, and the xbox 360's power supply is only rated for 240 watts continuous, 280watts surge. The xbox one uses even less, like 200watts. So I think an 8 guage amp install kit shoudld be sufficient.

Once you get the kits, just run your positive wire to your cars battery directly, with the fuse a few inches from the battery. Then find a bare metal bolt something in the car and place the ground where on it. Put both wires on the Inverter and you should be fine.
 
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