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Thread: The Rabbit Hole of Audio

  1. #1
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    Default The Rabbit Hole of Audio

    So being the human I am, I canít leave things alone. Mostly why I bought a Jeep in the first place. I now find myself in the rabbit hole of the audio situation. Iíve been down this road before with my Silverado and blew around $2,000. Dumbest thing Iíve ever done. Didnít wanna find myself in that situation again so I figured Iíd go about this the smart way. Live and learn right?

    Did a bunch of research on how to make the stock system sound better. Got some Polk DB651s for the soundbar and front. Mutilated the stock speakers to use the mounting plate. Put some dynamat and poly fill in the soundbar and front boxes. Had to now crank the stock head unit because it didnít have the power to drive the speakers.

    This is lead to me needing a new head unit. I didnít wanna ball out and get the unit I really wanted so I went with a Pioneer AVH 2300 NEX. Got the idatalink stuff and got everything hooked up tonight. Plugged it in, turned it on. Sounds no different except that now I can crank it and itís louder. tried messing with the EQ settings but didnít even get it sounding to where I thought yet would be.

    I put out a post on another forum and I have everyone telling me to get an amp for the speakers and a sub. Many different opinions on what to get. Basically going to cost me another $500 easily.

    Itís only money right? Iíd rather be putting this money into the suspension. But oh well.

    What have you guys done if anything at all? Are you happy with it? Some tips? Tricks? Any help would be great.

    About to go drown my sorrows in cold beer lmao.

  2. #2
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    Default

    I just remember keep the hz under 20k, match the speaker rms to stereo output per channel, and something about ohms. Its been years since I did the research and its all very fuzzy, but I did it and bought a decent JVC cd/receiver for under $150, maybe even under $100, and good marine speakers, forget the brand but white and red box, for the front and speaker bar on my tj, no sub, and that system was awesome. Full volume no distortion, crisp and clear and LOUD. Couldn't hear yourself but for yelling. Rarely had it that loud though. It was a great system for cheap money, in my opinion.
    Have had the 730n in my jk's, premium audio, and they both have been similar to that system for power and clarity, only with a sub too.

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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by bob View Post
    I just remember keep the hz under 20k, match the speaker rms to stereo output per channel, and something about ohms. Its been years since I did the research and its all very fuzzy, but I did it and bought a decent JVC cd/receiver for under $150, maybe even under $100, and good marine speakers, forget the brand but white and red box, for the front and speaker bar on my tj, no sub, and that system was awesome. Full volume no distortion, crisp and clear and LOUD. Couldn't hear yourself but for yelling. Rarely had it that loud though. It was a great system for cheap money, in my opinion.
    Have had the 730n in my jk's, premium audio, and they both have been similar to that system for power and clarity, only with a sub too.

    Sent from my SM-T380 using Tapatalk
    Thanks for the reply!

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    Default

    Hard to believe only one person can chime in and give any kind of advice.

  5. #5
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    Default

    I'm not an audio guy or I would. I make a point to not have anything in my Jeep I would miss if it got stolen, since I run doorless and windowless all the time.

    I'm all about the $50 Walmart head unit. And I previously had like a $60 self powered sub under my driver's seat for a little extra, but it wasn't audiophile by any means. Sorry bud.
    Last edited by FreakinJeep; 03-31-2019 at 03:15 PM.
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  6. #6
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    Default

    All good. I got an alarm system with proximity sensors to try to keep it More secure with top and doors off. Bought that before I went down this avenue. Have to put it in once we get more good weather. Obviously Iím aware that people will still take something if they want it bad enough. Thatís why Iím trying to keep everything out of sight when it comes to this system. Just need to keep honest people honest. Thanks for the input

  7. #7
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    Spending $2k on a system is only dumb if you didn't enjoy it :). We own Jeeps, we all spend more money than people think we should. Money can't buy happiness right? I didn't see your post until now; a few of us on here are audio guys, I installed professionally for close to 10 years and still do it on the side, Chris (cda) also used to work in the industry, Mike (MTNBKER) still works in the industry after ĀĪ20 years. Sorry if my post is long winded.

    Factory systems are generally tuned for the vehicle, whether they have a factory amp or not, the crossover settings are built into the radio and the speakers are low power so the low power coming out of the radio can easily drive them and create OK sound. Changing just the speakers can result in some more clarity, but usually the aftermarket speakers have larger drivers and are rated to say 50w RMS, so if you are using just a radio with a 10w RMS output per channel, it may struggle to push them, especially at the low end of the audio spectrum where you really want more sound. The Pioneer states 50w but thats max output, not RMS, which is generally 10-20w on a head unit.

    The Polk DB651 is a great low cost speaker, I have run them and sold them before, I used to be sponsored by Polk audio actually and had built a show car for Polk. The DB651 are a marine grade speaker and are perfect for a Jeep, they also do not require a ton of wattage to drive them, but they will sound a lot better with more power.

    Adding an amplifier will definitely result in more volume and better sound and there is more than one way to do it. Do you want a subwoofer or not? What type of sound are you trying to achieve? A subwoofer will pickup the lows and provide a more full sound, amplifying just the speakers will give you better sound with better low mid-range. Your mid-range is generally 250-2k hertz but a good speaker that's amplified can produce sounds that are lower than this. A subwoofer is picking up all the tones that the speakers cannot play below this, which is why you get more full sound, but many people are happy with just low mid-range.

    Sometimes what I suggest if you want a sub, is to do a 4 channel amp, and power the front speakers with channels 1&2, then power a sub with channels 3&4. No need to amplify speakers behind you generally, you don't go to a band and have speakers blaring behind your head. You are trying to achieve a sound that makes you feel a band is playing on the hood of your car.

    Cheaper option for an amp without having to run a big power kit is the Alpine KTP-445U power pack, it provides 45watts RMS x 4 channels, and only other thing you need to buy are RCA's to connect to your Pioneer head unit. You could power your fronts and the soundbar, or fronts and a small sub, etc... These are also small and fit places a normal amp won't. If you go with a normal amplifier it will require a separate amp wiring kit, but they will produce a lot more power.

    Many ways to go about this, happy to help if I can. Feel free to PM me as well. I don't live far from you so if you wanted to stop by some day for me to play with the settings you currently have, I could.

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    Last edited by Jeepin; 04-01-2019 at 02:14 PM.
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  8. #8
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    Question

    Just did an audio upgrade myself. JVC KW-R930BTS with RF R165-S in the dash Polk DB652 overhead and NVX QBUS8v2 sub. All in ~$320. Totally impressed with this systems sound qulaity and volume is awesome for the $$. When i put the dash speaks in with the stock HU a few months back i did like a lot of the forums say - fill the enclosures with poly fill. big mistake ! sounded like total crap and unable to get any real volume out of them. removed it and everythig sounded waaay better.

    Big discplaimer - my X package does not have the factory amp and all the CAN Bus bits.
    I had the factory amp in my last jeep go and it was a royal PITA to get everyhting to bypass it. the can bus systems requires the factory amp and some other bits to be in good working order (thats my understand anyways). if they are not it's a much bigger job to bypass all those bits.
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    What did you end up doing, dun_right?

    Sounds like the resounding suggestion is to run a separate speaker amp and potentially a sub to fill in the lows. I ran a small all-in-one sub/amp in my TJ and it filled in nicely and sounded great.
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb523 View Post
    What did you end up doing, dun_right?

    Sounds like the resounding suggestion is to run a separate speaker amp and potentially a sub to fill in the lows. I ran a small all-in-one sub/amp in my TJ and it filled in nicely and sounded great.
    He should have an update soon, final touches were being done yesterday actually. I can let Justin fill in what I miss, but he did go with the Alpine KTP-445U power pack to run all speakers, front and sound bar, then came by my place and we did some tuning on it, found that it didn't have enough of the lows, so he added an Alpine PWE-S8 sub/amp combo. Alpine makes this as a PWE-S8-WRA with wrangler specific bracket and harness, but they charge an extra $215 on Amazon just for the Wrangler version. Justin did the work, I just played tech support :P
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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by mb523 View Post
    What did you end up doing, dun_right?

    Sounds like the resounding suggestion is to run a separate speaker amp and potentially a sub to fill in the lows. I ran a small all-in-one sub/amp in my TJ and it filled in nicely and sounded great.
    Jeepin got it lol. I finished wiring the subwoofer last night and put the dash together. Still have to tune the amp for the subwoofer. I ended up buying the mounting brackets from the WRA kit from a third party website through Alpine. $100 shipped which was ridiculous for 2 pieces of metal lol. But i was starting to get impatient with the project and wanted to finish it up so that was my reasoning lol. We'll see how they last. People were complaining about them cracking. And the sub vibrates the seat which isn't a bad thing.

    I wanted the sub becuase the coaxial speakers I put in, didn't hit the lows that I like. He got it very close to where it would have been perfectly okay running without a subwoofer. But it was missing that oomf.

    Overall, with Jeepin's help, the system sounds AMAZING compared to stock. I couldn't ask for anything more out of it. I definitely recommend everything I used. if I were to do it over, I wouldn't have even touched anything to avoid the headache lol

    But now that it's done, im beyond happy with it.

  12. #12
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    Default More Problems

    So after having the Sub-Woofer installed since May, it quit working a few weeks ago. Powers up, just no sound. I checked all connections and everything was as it should be. One of the underseat mounting brackets that I got through Alpine broke. They sent me new ones and I got in touch with amazon about sending me a new sub.

    I'm pretty confident that's the problem. I just need to make the time to get the seat taken out.

    I also need to make some rubber spacers to put between the bracket mounts and the subwoofer so there is no stress on the bracket.

    I haven't driven the Jeep in almost 3 weeks because the system is not good without the sub. Spoiled I guess lol.

    Can't wait to finally get this done.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by dun_right View Post
    I haven't driven the Jeep in almost 3 weeks because the system is not good without the sub. Spoiled I guess lol.
    I like having music when I'm alone in the Jeep and not offroad (between radio communication and listening to what the Jeep is telling be by noises I prefer to have the music off when on a run)... but can't drive it at all because the sub is out... I'm going to guess that by the time your Jeep makes the inevitable rattles and squeaks and clunks and taps and other mystery noises, you won't be driving it at all!
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    Quote Originally Posted by dun_right View Post
    I haven't driven the Jeep in almost 3 weeks because the system is not good without the sub. Spoiled I guess lol.
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    Quote Originally Posted by NotThePainter View Post
    You gotta drive Agnes on the highway...


    Seriously! Paul drives it to Rausch Creek and back... and he's done it more than once!

    JK and JL owners that haven't driven a "classic" Jeep with a soft top don't appreciate the cheap-tent-in-a-hurricane feeling on the highway. Add to that a complete lack of sound insulation with that "tent" sitting on top of a tin box... lets just say; CB radio comms get tricky let alone listening to music.
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