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Unread 09-10-2007, 04:54 PM   #1
bman9089
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Pictures/Advice/security about possible new sound system

Alright,

So I haven't patrolled this forum much but I'm finding it really interesting. I'm not a huge sound junkie, but having clearer sound would be nice.

Here are the following questions. I'm always willing to save up a system and get something good, rather than spending hundreds of dollars and come up mediocre. I'm not wanting to do anything real extravagant, and I'm not wanting to blast the stereo so loud that it echoes through the mountains. But I'd like a good quality system that can pump out some crystal clear his and lows.

1.) Which brands do you recommend? Subs, faceplates, speakers - what should I look for and how do you know quality?

2.) How hard is it to wire everything?

3.) Where's the most optimal place to mount the sub?

4.) What's the most secure way to go aftermarket that you can think of for protection against theft. This includes the stereo player/speakers/sub?

5.) What all do I really need to do to get better sound? Is adding a sub and amp all that's required?

By the way, I listen to rock (bands like crossfade) and a little techno here and there, and like a little bass. I want to feel it, but I don't need something that makes my bones rattle. Something moderate is alright.

Any basic tips or directions to what's good, or articles about how to learn this stuff would be great!! I'm also looking for something that won't be too actractive...as in, catch a theif's attention. I figure the face plate is the most vulnerable to theft so something basic yet adequate is alright. I don't need anything fancy there, but something that allows mp3 player hook up would be great! I run top down all summer and hard top in winter.

This is a bit of a crash course for me. I know that I asked some very general questions but I wanted to post (hopefully) just one thread instead of multiple threads.

Thanks for the help! Let me know if you have any questions.

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Unread 09-10-2007, 07:38 PM   #2
mylt1
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alpine, kenwood, or eclips for the deck. speakers are personal prefrence. match the amp to the rms of the speakers. sub box, sirgcals inseat box with a sub that matches the cubic feet of the box and match an amp with the rms of the sub. not that hard to wire anything as long as you take your time. to get better sound, 5.25's in the dash with an adapter plate, matching set of 5.25's in the sound bar because you are gonna run a sub.
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Unread 09-10-2007, 07:44 PM   #3
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1.) Which brands do you recommend? Subs, faceplates, speakers - what should I look for and how do you know quality? Everybody has individual preferences, so here are are mine. The new Alpine head units are great and allow you to play a usb jump drive as well as offer a slick iPod interface. Even if you don't have an iPod, being able to play a jump drive is great as they are so cheap these days. If you want something more weather resistant, here are some marine head units that aren't too flashy http://www.crutchfield.com/S-ycOPTEo...p.asp?g=221050 Of those, I like the Kenwood. For mids and highs, I really like Infinity Reference series. The Kappas are too ear piercing. Another popular alternative is Polk, but I am partial to Infinity Reference. For subs, that is subjective. If you go with the in seat box that SirGCal builds, the Pioneer shallow mount seems to be the best of the shallow mount subs in a reasonable price range. I went with a cube sub box and put a JBl 10" P1024 in there, sealed of course, for tightness and accuracy. I went with a couple of Alpine amps since I went with an Alpine head unit and shopped around until I found them at a more reasonable price than what I was looking at at first.

2.) How hard is it to wire everything? Wiring is a breeze if you plan in advance. For example, I knew I would be running 2 amps, so I had a heavy gauge wire come in, had a distribution block, then branch of with smaller leads to each amp.

3.) Where's the most optimal place to mount the sub? This is individual preference on how much space you are willing to sacrifice. SirGCal makes a great in seat box for shallow subs. I went with a simple cube behind the backseat of my JK. Others go for bazookas, which are OK, but not the best accuracy wise.

4.) What's the most secure way to go aftermarket that you can think of for protection against theft. This includes the stereo player/speakers/sub? SirGCal's in seat subbox is the winner hands down for stealth. Regular speakers, you should use factory locations and grills, with adapters if necessary. Mounting the head unit in a lockable center console will provide the best protection. I did not do this because I live in a low crime area.

5.) What all do I really need to do to get better sound? Is adding a sub and amp all that's required? This really depends on your budget. If you want the best sound, replace everything. If you are on a tight budget, replace only the speakes and get ones rated for 35 watts or a little less. Under powered speakers sound really bad. Supplement that with a powered bazooka and that is a cheap upgrade. I find Kenwood speakers do well in the head unit powered speaker category. Another route you may take if you want to keep the factory head unit and replace everything else is go with the aforementioned Infinity's, but buy an Infinity Basslink II with the add in amplifier. The add in amplifier will power your four main speakers and the rest of Infinity Basslink II has an amp and a square 10" subwoofer. Again, it's one step up on the budget. I replaced everything, went with two amps, etc. since I didn't really have a budget for my system. These are not by any means the only way to go. Here is what I ended up with in my JK.

Alpine IDA-X001 head unit
Alpine KCE-300BT blue tooth unit
Infinity 6020CS components in the dash
Infinity 6022si coaxials in the sound bar (made a lot of sense in that location)
Alpine MRP-F250 pushing the above speakers (50 X 4 into 2 ohms)
JBL 10" P1024 subwoofer (dual voice coils wired for 2 ohms)
Cube shaped sealed box for the sub
Alpine MRP-M650 pushing the sub (600 X 1 into 2 ohms)
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Unread 09-10-2007, 08:11 PM   #4
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AWESOME posts!

Thanks so much Prot and Mylt1!

I was looking at Alpine today, and they seem like a good way to go. Eventually, Ideally what I would like to do is run the following:

New head unit (looking for something cheap (if stolen), something to play MP3/CD/WMA, preferably something black if possible (again, the less flashy, the better). I don't live in a high crime area either. I live out and away from Colorado Springs, but will probably live in the springs in a couple of years attending college (UCCS most likely) and while the crime isn't too bad, it's still a city and it has its moments.

Replace dash speakers and sound bar speakers with ???? I don't know? Should I stick with one brand all around?

Run (2) 10" subs in the back somewhere. This is where I really need help. I like the stealth factor, but often I will take my seats out all together and I don't want to lose the subs in the process. The idea is amazing though so its still on the table. I don't mind taking up the 'trunk' space in the rear. It really doesn't do me much good at this point. Are there any aftermarket enclosures that will fit 2 10" subs and an amp in the rear? (<---I haven't found anything on this yet)

And then run some sort of amp. The amp is where I get very confused. First off, if I do this in steps I'll start out with the basic speakers in the dash and sound bar and head unit together. Do I need an amp at this stage?

Phase 2 will probably involve the sub(s) next. What kind of amp do I need to run this setup??

I'm inexperienced with all the OHM, wattage stuff. Again, I want pretty good sound, but I never blast the thing. I just want good clean bass, so I don't think I need anything too fancy or big. Perhaps I don't even need 10" subs. Maybe 8"??

Any more details on what I should look for? Right now, the stock 'quality' of the speakers doesn't bother me too much. I don't want to invest tons of money into this. I could go up to $750, but if I could keep it about $500 then I would be happy! But again, I don't know how much $$$ it takes for a good setup, and I want to 'do it right, or not at all'. So, lead me in the right direction! Is pioneer good enough? Or should I stick with something a little higher end like Alpine??

Should I mix and match components or just stay with one brand all around?

Tons of questions I know! But I think it will get me started in the right direction.

Thanks so much!!

-Brandon
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Unread 09-10-2007, 09:13 PM   #5
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as far as security, just remember to take the face off and you shouldnt have any problems. alpine is one of the best makers out there. as far as the speakers you really want to get them and the amp at the same time. you can run speakers for a while without an amp but i wouldnt. space it out as far as price. but the deck then wait till you have the cash for the speakers and amp. then add the sub and amp. i could find you a nice setup for less than $750. i will give you an example.

deck Alpine CDE-9881 3 sets of rca, only 16wrms but your gonna run an amp so no big thing. $180 which is a good price for crutchfield.
http://www.crutchfield.com/S-aWaRA7z...0&I=500CDE9881

then speakers, 2 sets of polks. $50 from crutchfield.
http://www.crutchfield.com/S-aWaRA7z...800&I=107DB525

amp for the polks.alpine MRP-F250 40w rms $133 from etronics.
http://www.etronics.com/product.asp?...50&svbname=403

thats 413 before shipping for everything but the sub and amp. prices are gonna change now because you will need a box to go along with the sub unless you can built your own. but i will continue.

sub, polk MM2104 little on the powerful side but with an open top jeep i would usually run more wattage to the sub when comparied to normal cars. $119 form crutchfield.
http://www.crutchfield.com/S-aWaRA7z...20&I=107MM2104

amp for the sub, clarion $122 +s&h onlinecarstereo.com
http://www.onlinecarstereo.com/CarAu...roductID=17290

box for the sub. you need something as close to .66ft^ as you can get. im not sure how big a box will fit behind the rear seat but down firing is your best bet.

now, this is a rough guide to what would make a good mid range system. you cah go with differnt speakers and change the amp for those different speakers. as far as the sub there are shallow mount subs that require less cubic feet so its all in what you want.


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Unread 09-10-2007, 09:18 PM   #6
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Ok. Couple more questions. What do you guys think of the brand BOSS?

And would something like a tuffy instatrunk be a bad idea??
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Unread 09-10-2007, 09:40 PM   #7
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If you are going to go with an instatrunk, then keep that in mind for your plans for the sub enclosure. The instatrunk will not work as a sub enclosure (the next post someone is going to say it will). I don't think you need a pair of subs. If you look at the volume of space in my Unlimited JK, the JBL 1024 does great in, so it will be even better in your TJ. You have to move air to have bass, and that is why I dislike shallow mount subs. A good 10" will be fine if it moves enough air, is efficient, and most importantly, adequately powered. You need to decide if you are going to run the speakers off the head unit or an amp. Speakers that will work good with the amp will sound extremely weak and shallow running off the head unit alone. Speakers that will sound good running off the head unit will not handle the power of an amp.

I bought my infinity speakers and both of my amps from www.hookedontronics.com

They had the lowest price. I got my head unit and sub from crutchfield. I got the sub enclosure locally.
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Unread 09-10-2007, 09:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Prot
If you are going to go with an instatrunk, then keep that in mind for your plans for the sub enclosure. The instatrunk will not work as a sub enclosure (the next post someone is going to say it will). I don't think you need a pair of subs. If you look at the volume of space in my Unlimited JK, the JBL 1024 does great in, so it will be even better in your TJ. You have to move air to have bass, and that is why I dislike shallow mount subs. A good 10" will be fine if it moves enough air, is efficient, and most importantly, adequately powered. You need to decide if you are going to run the speakers off the head unit or an amp. Speakers that will work good with the amp will sound extremely weak and shallow running off the head unit alone. Speakers that will sound good running off the head unit will not handle the power of an amp.

I bought my infinity speakers and both of my amps from www.hookedontronics.com

They had the lowest price. I got my head unit and sub from crutchfield. I got the sub enclosure locally.
So what kind of amp should I be looking for ideally?

And should I only go with one sub? maybe a 12"? And if so, there's one on quadratec from BOSS that includes the sub and amp together. I wasn't sure if that was a good thing or not since quadratec is just a big retail store.

Do you think the instatrunk would affect the sound?
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Unread 09-11-2007, 09:43 PM   #9
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......... please.

Another question. (please keep the answers rolling, I greatly appreciate the time members take to write responses!)

So, based upon wiring, do you wire like this?:

Head unit(aftermarket)----->Amp----->Speakers (4), and 2 Subs.

Or does it go like this:

Head unit(aftermarket)

----->Speakers
----->Amp----->Subs 2 10"

If anyone can point me to some articles, that would be great! I'm a complete to this stuff.

Yes, I tried searching and tried Google but this part of the forum isn't that big or highly patrolled.

Is 2 10" subs too much bass for a TJ?

!
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Unread 09-12-2007, 07:54 AM   #10
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Wiring depends on how many amps or what type of amps you plan to run...

Anyhow, to answer everything...

For heads I use Alpine, Clarion and Eclipse only... But anything that fits your bill will work. Speakers, as mentioned, are really a personal preference. Go listen to figure out what you really like. I like Polk, Focal, JL Audio to name a few.

Too much bass? again, that's personal preference... Personally I wouldn't use up that much room for the gain of two 10's over just one in a TJ... If I was going to do a behind-the-seat option instead of an in-the-seat option (which the in-seat options are removable.. I don't take mine wheeling very often...) I would probably do one of Ron's sub& insta-trunk combination boxes. good quality, fair price.. (just4effect.com) (ok, personally I'd build it myself but he does good work for a fair price... if I was going to buy one, I would buy one of his.)

I just did a full competition 04 TJ which you can see in my Jeep Projects section using one of the shallow pioneers. If you want a bit more thump, the new JL TW5's will be out in a few months... I'm going to build a new box using one of those as soon as I can get the time next year.

How things are wired; look at my two projects in the jeep projects section (top two links I think... the 2k and 04 stealth projects). They both have a general wiring diagram in each area.
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Unread 09-12-2007, 09:47 AM   #11
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yes. you want head unit then speakers and soon after(if you go above 35w rms) amp, then amp and sub.
have you ever laid out a budget? if not plan it out in steps. figure out how much you want to spend and stick to it as best you can. figure 2-3 months for the deck, 2 months for the speakers, 2-3 months for the amp for the speakers, then 3-4 months for an amp, sub and box. dont want to wait that long? then put aside the max you can every paycheck or whatever. cut back on some non necessary items and instead of buying that case of beer put that money away. small things add up quick. cut out a couple of trips that arent really necessary. wont take long to have everything together. also shop around for the best prices and dont forget about the little things like the mounting kit, wiring kit, and amp kits.
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Unread 09-12-2007, 05:09 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirGCal
Wiring depends on how many amps or what type of amps you plan to run...

Anyhow, to answer everything...

For heads I use Alpine, Clarion and Eclipse only... But anything that fits your bill will work. Speakers, as mentioned, are really a personal preference. Go listen to figure out what you really like. I like Polk, Focal, JL Audio to name a few.

Too much bass? again, that's personal preference... Personally I wouldn't use up that much room for the gain of two 10's over just one in a TJ... If I was going to do a behind-the-seat option instead of an in-the-seat option (which the in-seat options are removable.. I don't take mine wheeling very often...) I would probably do one of Ron's sub& insta-trunk combination boxes. good quality, fair price.. (just4effect.com) (ok, personally I'd build it myself but he does good work for a fair price... if I was going to buy one, I would buy one of his.)

I just did a full competition 04 TJ which you can see in my Jeep Projects section using one of the shallow pioneers. If you want a bit more thump, the new JL TW5's will be out in a few months... I'm going to build a new box using one of those as soon as I can get the time next year.

How things are wired; look at my two projects in the jeep projects section (top two links I think... the 2k and 04 stealth projects). They both have a general wiring diagram in each area.
Thanks, I'll take a look into Ron's setup.
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Unread 09-12-2007, 05:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mylt1
yes. you want head unit then speakers and soon after(if you go above 35w rms) amp, then amp and sub.
have you ever laid out a budget? if not plan it out in steps. figure out how much you want to spend and stick to it as best you can. figure 2-3 months for the deck, 2 months for the speakers, 2-3 months for the amp for the speakers, then 3-4 months for an amp, sub and box. dont want to wait that long? then put aside the max you can every paycheck or whatever. cut back on some non necessary items and instead of buying that case of beer put that money away. small things add up quick. cut out a couple of trips that arent really necessary. wont take long to have everything together. also shop around for the best prices and dont forget about the little things like the mounting kit, wiring kit, and amp kits.
Well, how many amps is stock? Do I need to run more than 35w rms? I thought the upgraded deck plus speakers would be enough....???? Is it??
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“Sometimes I wonder whether the world is being run by smart people who are putting us on or by imbeciles who really mean it” -- Mark Twain

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Unread 09-12-2007, 05:23 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bman9089
Well, how many amps is stock? Do I need to run more than 35w rms? I thought the upgraded deck plus speakers would be enough....???? Is it??
Most of the best after market head units are only around 20W RMS... The 50x4 you often see is an unrealistic max possible rating which you'll never see. It's a marketing ploy...
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Unread 09-12-2007, 06:27 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirGCal
Most of the best after market head units are only around 20W RMS... The 50x4 you often see is an unrealistic max possible rating which you'll never see. It's a marketing ploy...
Does that mean that I will need 2 amps then?

1 for the four speakers and 1 for the 2 subwoofers (8-10")? Probably not going to run anything too heavy. Perhaps 150 watts per sub is enough? And if I do that, what kind of amp do I need? Mono or multi channel? 150 watt capacity or 300?

The amps really throw me off with what can bee hooked up and how the power is diversified through the speakers.
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