Need help designing a system for my car v.opentosuggestionsandcriticism

Discussion in 'OT Technology' started by DjShiznit, Mar 12, 2007.

  1. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    OK so I'd like to put a system in my car. I have past experience with car audio, built boxes, installed decks, amps, subs, wiring, etc. I'm by no means an expert, but I do have a few installs under my belt. Anyways, I'd like to put a system in my car (Audi 200). I would like to go more for SQ than SPL. I'm not too concerned with loudness, but would like a nice, natural sounding system. Here are the components that I already have:

    1xSoundstream Reference 1000SX Mono Amp
    1xSoundstream Reference 604 4ch Amp
    1xPair MB Quart Discus 5.25" Seperates
    1x 1/2 Farad generic Cap
    Some 4 guage power wire and RCA's

    I still need to get some 6.5" speakers for the rear deck.

    I also need to replace the factory head unit. I've usually gone with Alpine in the past for head units, but all their new models only have 2V pre-outs and appear to suck ass all around. I'm considering picking up this Eclipse head unit. It has 5V outputs, supports navigation, and is iPod compatible.

    I'd also like to install 2 subs into my trunk. I'd like to have seperate sealed enclosures, on each side of the pass-through port. I'm unsure as to whether or not I could build a box for 12" speakers to fit, of if I'll have to go with 10's. Here's my trunk.

    [​IMG]

    I also copied in various measurements.
    [​IMG]

    I dunno what to use for speakers though. I was thinking maybe Boston Acoustic, or Diamond Audio. Most likely DVC's, or 2ohm speakers, if they're offered, and run off of my amp at 1ohm. Again, I'm not too concerned with SPL, but more SQ. I want a nice sounding system.

    I'd also like to mount my amps and cap under my rear deck. Would that be a bad idea?

    Well OT, what do ya think? Any suggestions / criticism regarding my project? Any advice would be greatly appreciated :wavey:

    Edit: I just placed an order for the Alpine cda-9885. The price was reasonable ($280), it has 4V outputs, and is iPod compatible with Alpine's $30 cable. Alpine's iPod interface has gotten very good reviews, so it should serve my application nicely. I'm thinking I'll just install some MB Quart coax speakers for rear-fill. Again - still open to suggestions, particularly regarding putting in subs and boxes. :hs: Or any other suggestions / criticism would be appreciated :hs:
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  2. JRock10

    JRock10 Active Member

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    just amp the factory rears and use them for rear fill. if you're going more for clarity than output, then I'd probably use 10's. especially if you listen to anything other than rap.
     
  3. Create

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    I don't see why you couldn't fit 12's in there. You'd have to angle them just right while keeping the box volume optimal, but it's not that tough of a design/fabrication issue. Sealed box volume requirements are usually small.

    I'd definitely get another pair of MB Quart seperates for the rear. At least run matching tweeters so you have four to tune for decent staging.

    I'm not sure if the specific speaker woofers you're looking at are designed to run open air or in a box. If they like a box, you might as well incorporate one into each sub box for the rear deck set.

    Crossovers?

    lookie: http://www.carstereo.com/help/Articles.cfm
     
    Last edited: Mar 19, 2007
  4. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Sorry for the lack of update. I dug up my seperates that I had acquired a while ago. *Link to specs for seperates*

    I also ordered these to use for rear fill *link*

    I also learned that my 4ch Soundstream amp is dead. I have a 4ch MTX amp in my truck that I'm gonna use. I don't recall the exact model. I purchased it a couple years ago for about $230 iirc. I'm sure it'd work just fine for powering the mids/highs that I have.

    I think I've more or less decided to use 10" subs, in seperate enclosures. I'm currently leaning towards these MTX 5500's *link* Not only should this simplify the building of the boxes, but for the type of music that I listen to (not rap), I'd probably be more pleased with the sound than from a larger speaker (12").

    I'm gonna dig in next week and get the deck installed, as well as run the RCA's and remote turn on to the trunk. I'll probably install the rear deck speakers the same day.

    I plan on having a local stereo shop install custom pods in my front doors for my seperates. I don't care to attempt it myself, as I'm unexperienced and don't want my door panels looking like ass. I will then, of course, run the wires back to my trunk.

    This will basically leave me with the task of purchasing the subs, and constructing the boxes. As stated in *this thread*, I'm already contemplating the task of constructing the boxes to fit against the back of my trunk properly.

    Also, it should be noted, I'm not an audiophile. I have put together systems before, but SPL was usually the goal. I really could care less for that right now. I just want to enjoy listening to my music :hs: So, that's basically what I'm looking to acomplish.

    In regards to crossovers... Umm.... I believe both of my amps have those. Again, I'd go broke trying to go top of the line. I'm just trying to make due with what I have, and purchase whatever I need to complete the system.

    I hope I've got all the questions answered. This is basically where I'm at right now :hs:
     
  5. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Amps seem ok.

    Ditch the cap and put that money into a battery or Big 3.

    Screw rear fill and put that money towards a componet set. Build a decent front stage and you will forever forget about anything behind you. You aren't watching movies (are you?) and 99% of music is recorded in stereo...plus your receiver can only desipher 2 channels. Thoes two channels where mixed to sound like they came from in front of you.

    2v head units work fine. I just instlled one and I can push it to 34 before I notice any clipping. Bass controlls work great and it was a great budget unit. (9852 IIRC). Eclipse is good but in the past they lacked pause buttons. I dont know if this is fixed but I like/need my pause.

    Two sealed 12"s look like they would do well in your application though the boxes would be a tight fit. If you are into deck modifications you could hang the boxes from the rear deck (if there is room) and have the subs fire directly into the cabin to help with their responce (seriosuly, you wouldnt put your HT sub in your neighbor's house). Or you could even do an IB (infinite baffle) application. Since you are looking for SQ IB is awsome sauce for that. Image Dynamics makes some great subs for IB applications as do a few other companies.
     
  6. Create

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    Ah, we're aiming a bit lower than I thought.

    Good call on the subwoofer size. Sealed box tens will give better response while sacrificing some range at the low end.

    When you say a local shop is going to install 'custom pods in my front doors' what do you mean exactly? Are you having them install the woofer enclosure or the tweeter enclosure?

    From my experience, the hardest part of installation is running the RCA's and RTO between the head unit and amp. Interior work, as a whole, can be a real PITA, some cars more than others. I'd bet they wouldn't charge a whole lot more to go ahead and run the RCA's and RTO's for you.

    There's two things you should never do to a set of speakers: underpower and input signal outside the speaker's frequency response. If you are going to use your amplifier's crossovers, you should know that their db/octave rating is likely quite low, meaning you need to set the amplifier crossover level significantly higher than than the rated minimum frequency for the speaker.

    Where is the other amp? Four speakers + two subs = 6 channels. You *could* just power the subs and fronts, but that's going to be a PITA to wire the RCA + RTO back to the amp, then 4ga for each speaker from the amp to the doors. I havn't seen a car that'd fit that bundle under a panel. You'd likely have to run bundles both sides.
     
  7. Create

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    Then watch your amp fry the first time your car's electrical system is inconsistent.

    He's got components up front and spent peanuts for the ability to actually create a stage.

    Explain to me how IB's less woofer control yeilds better sound quality.
     
  8. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Well basically, from the factory, the car has 4" speakers on top of the dashboard. 4" seperates are not too common, they surely wouldn't output as well as a larger speaker of any size, and I already have the 5 1/4" MB Quart seperates. I'd like to ditch the factory front speakers and location entirely, and have an enclosure built into my front doors to accomodate the seperates that I have. The new enclosure would house the 5 1/4" drivers and probably the tweets. They may be mountable on the door panel with ease as well, I dunno if one way would be preferable or not.

    I wholeheartedly agree. Also, when I ordered my deck, not only did I need to get a seperate relay to turn the factory amp on, but I also needed a seperate adapter to wire the aftermarket deck in with the factory amp / speakers. I was gonna install the deck and maybe use the factory speakers for a while until I got the door enclosures done, but I'm having second thoughts now and think I'll do everything in one shot (with exception of maybe my Soundstream Ref1000 and subs - as they can easily be added later). Basically, I don't want a rats nest of wiring to use any factory equipment. Perhaps I'll just pay them to do the pods, and have them install the deck, and run the RCA's and remote turn-on back for me, along with the wires for the new front speakers. All that will leave me to worry about is mounting / hooking up the amps, installing the rear deck speakers, which shouldn't be too difficult.

    I understand what you're saying. I just don't see myself spending all that much to put a system in a near 20yr old car. I love music, don't get me wrong. I want it to sound clean. I also understand that the sky's the limit for spending, and acoustic perfection can never be reached. I'm confident that I can put something together the way I described, not spend a fortune, but still be happy with the sound quality. Otherwise, I'd just buy some cheap coaxial 4's for the front, even cheaper rear fills, skimped out on the deck and picked up some Pyle amps :o I'm trying to shoot for a happy medium between being a total cheap ass, and spending more on stereo equipment than my car is worth.

    Well I was gonna run the front/rear RCA's to the 4ch MTX amp that I have, and run the sub output to my Ref1K, and run a couple 4ohm subs in parallel giving my amp a 2ohm load mono. I hadn't really considered running the subs in stereo. All I'd need to run back are the 3 RCA's, remote turn on, and wires for the new front speakers. I plan on running them down the drivers side, and segregate the amp power wires to the passanger side (battery is under rear seat on passangers side :audi: ). I've always tried my best to seperate my power wires from any signal carrying wires to reduce any possible interferance :hs:
     
  9. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Inconsistent elctrical system in an Audi? Unpossible! :o

    Peanuts sounds about right. I picked up the MB Quart seperates at a liquidation sale for $40 :hs:
     
  10. Create

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    I think I get it. The plan now is to get power and antenna to the head unit, screw the factory amp/speakers, speakers/amps/wiring all around, sub wiring done but waiting for boxes to be built.

    Since you have component speakers you should definitely mount the tweeters up high, chest/ear level.

    There are aftermarket parts that will give a factory look for tweeters mounted at the front corners, either at the front of the door window or in the corners between the windshield and dash. I moved my tweeters (I30) from the window corners to the windshield/dash corners and give the latter :thumbsup:

    If they have to install a hole and screen into your door it's going to be expensive. I'd recommend against this. Rebracket the 4" existing mounts to 5.25" if space permits. If not, pick up 4" woofers. Use the MB Quart component crossovers you own, then use the amp channel crossover to take care of the additional limitations of the 4" woofers. Since space may be a factor, you may have to skip the front woofer enclsure. You do, however, have space in the rear to use woofer enclosures.

    Assuming you do use rear woofer enclosure, how do you fit the subs? *Think side view* I'd have the subs pointing upwards and forward. The box would match the angle between the trunk floor and rear firewall. The trunk floor and rear of the box would make a right angle. The other two angles can be played with to make space for the rear woofer enclosures and meet box volume requirements.

    Looks like it'll be kinda tight. Opening the ski hole is going to sound great. Up/forward firing also means neighboring cars won't hate you.

    I'm not that much of a perfectionist myself. I've built three car systems and several home systems, incl. box design & crossovers for one of them. I put $2k into one car once. I should have spent 1/2 to 3/4 that in retrospect.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  11. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Amps frying from inconsistancy? I have personally ran amps on voltages as low as 10. If his alternator can not handle thoes two amps to the point the battery gets charged that low money needs to be put into a new electrical system, not a new stereo. Even if the voltage drops that low the amp likely has low voltage protection. Further more, a new battery far outweighs the energy storeing ability when compared to a capacitor.

    IB and SQ? You are actually questioning this? There isnt nessicarily less cone controll, you use a driver with high mechanical Q for a lot of suspension controll. The cone is strictly controlled by the coil and it's suspension and is not affected by changes in internal temperature or air pressure. Basically, there will be no affect on the sound due to the change in Q of an enclosure.
     
  12. Create

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    The cap and the battery serve different purposes.

    A car's electrical system is one of the most inconsistent electrical systems being built today, despite the battery in the loop. Power delivered from the battery terminals is never regular when the car is running. We then feed this power into a rather sensitive piece of equipment. It's just not good design. The capacitor acts as a cheap rectifier, either delivering full power or no power, never partial power.

    I'm not saying you're wrong, as a larger, higher quality battery will also help deliver more consistent power, but the cap is direct insurance.

    Thanks for the explanation. This makes perfect sense but wouldn't it require significantly higher W/dB?
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2007
  13. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Caps also add another load for the alternator to handle. Will it smooth voltage ripple? Yes. Is it a band-aid on a larger problem? Yes. I've never seen an amp fry from voltage ripple. I've seen amps fry from low voltage, high voltage, low loads, and too much heat though. IMO caps can be part of the system when applied properly. However, it is also my opinion that they dont pull their weight when applied improperly.

    Sorry for the little aditude in my last post. :)
     
  14. Create

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    It's really not significant compared to the amps, unless you've got an underrated cap.

    Really? How'd you determine the cause?
     
  15. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Let's say, I've never seen an amp fry that wasnt a manufacture defect when the only condition from perfect was voltage ripple in the system. :)
     
  16. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Well past new US amps...but that is a whole other story.
     
  17. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    I forgot to answear this. Yes, IB is less efficent than a sealed alignment. However, in the average sized sedan 2l of linear displacement should be able to provide a flat responce and get decently loud. :)
     
  18. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    I've always heard that you want the tweeters mounted within 1ft of the woofer, otherwise it sounds weird. I would think that doing what you described, atleast in my application, would cause that to happen. :dunno:
     
  19. Create

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    I've never heard that before, just that the higher the frequency the more directional info a person can sense.
     
  20. JRock10

    JRock10 Active Member

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    when i put tweets in the dash (factory locations) i ususally set them up at -6dB (when the xover allows) and wire them out of phase with the woofer. 2 reasons:

    #1: when you reflect high freqs of glass, there is no damping from the reflective surface.

    #2: wiring out of phase allows the freqs to be in phase with the woofer when bouncing off the glass.
     
  21. GammaRadiation

    GammaRadiation Active Member

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    Not entirely needed. I have my mids in the doors and my tweeters up on the dash. It sounds fine. In a perfect world your mids and highs would be at eye level and right next to each other both pointing at you with equal distances from your ears...but that is pretty dificult.
     
  22. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Understood. Well I took my car into the local shop and they're constructing speaker pods for the doors. I'll post pics when I get it back :)
     
  23. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Well gentlemen, the project is pretty much done at this point. I had the pods installed into the doors, and am very pleased with the end results. These MB Quart speakers are far better than the Infiniti reference series that I'm use to running :mamoru: Appearantly, my Soundstream Ref1000SX amp was dead when I bought it, so I picked up one of the new MTX 600XD amps. Anyways, here's some pics. Tell me what ya think. As a "budget" system, I'm very pleased with the sound quality :hs:

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    IBflames :o I'm very very satisfied with how the door pods turned out though. I was expecting a hack job to be honest. As far as I'm concerned, this guy that constructed them for me knows his shit :bowdown:
     
  24. Create

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    The door panels look alot better than I thought they would.

    What did it cost you for him to build the door pods?
     
  25. DjShiznit

    DjShiznit Representing Deutschland, yah.

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    Agreed. I was pleasantly suprised. I paid $200/side, which was basically a full day job in itself. :o It wasn't cheap, but considering the results, it could have been a lot worse :o Atleast it solved the limitation of the 4" factory dash mounted speakers :hs:
     

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