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Audio build for beginner: Advice needed

6244 Views 27 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  jd31
Hi guys,
The time has come for my 2011 Jeep’s audio system to be upgraded. To put it mildly I am not quite knowledgeable about this stuff so I would really appreciate your comments here.
The proposed set up is as follows:
Front doors: Hertz HSK 165
Back doors: Focal IC 165
Amp: Alpine PDX-v9
Sub; JL Stealthbox or custom made enclosure with one of slim line Phoenix Gold subs (I have not decided which way to go yet.
I do not have any experience in this field so the installation works will be done for me. The guys I contacted with this request suggested installing PAC SOEM-4 4-Channel Premium Line-Out Converter. I am not quite sure if it is really needed as I have not seen that anybody mentioned this thing here. On the other hand the installers are one of the best in town and obviously know their trade. I also read a ton of woeful reviews for this converter with complaints about adding noise etc. So, I am a bit lost here if it is really needed and if yes what should be used instead of this particular model.

The guys also suggested doing doors deadening which I guess should improve sound quality. Could anybody please tell if the results of the deadening are really worth it?

Finally, I am wondering if anybody ever dealt with Phoenix subs. I understand that they are inferior to JL. However, it may be possible that in custom made enclosure it will be possible to go with 12” slimline sub which may bring sound to a better level. Just a thought…

Could please anybody help me with this questions? It looks like the project is going to blow a hole in our budget of almost $4K so I do not have room for mistakes.

PS I have Laredo with basic 6 speakers (no sub or Alpine gear) and factory 430 unit which I am going to keep.
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Below is what I did to my Jeep. I see that you already had the system installed but I thought I'd tell you what I did to my car. I am pretty happy with the route I took. A lot less work and money with excellent results.

Sorry to hear it didn't turn out like you wanted. I don't think the head unit is the culprit. Although an aftermarket one would give more sound tuning options and cleaner signal, the stock unit isn't that bad.

There is a break in period for speaker but from what you are saying I think it comes down to bad audio adjustments and mismatched speakers. Although what I just said about mismatched speakers may play a small part ( I have done it without any big impact in sound quality) I would concentrate on the crossover points from your amplifier and also check the Hertz crossover to see if your tweeters are attenuated. You should also check the subwoofer phase.

I did a little upgrade to my ’13 JGC Nav Laredo E with 6 speakers and it didn’t cost me a fortune. Maybe this will give you an idea of what options are there. Currently I’m running the stock speakers as they sound pretty decent after I installed an amplifier to run the 6 speakers.

The setup I installed consists of:

Alpine KTP-445U Power Pack Class D amplifier 45 watts RMS x 4 at 2 or 4 ohms

Small size, very efficient and does not require separate power cables, I connected the amp directly to the wiring harness going to the back of the factory Nav radio. Fits directly below the radio in a small space behind the A/C controls. I connected the amp through the high level input option. The system sounds twice as loud or more.

Rockford Fosgate Punch PBR300X1 class D amplifier 300 watts RMS x 1 2ohms, 150 watts RMS x 1 at 4 ohms

Powering a set of Pioneer 8” shallow sub-woofers.

A sealed dual box. About .40 cu ft per side.

They hit very hard and complement the front door 6x9 speakers bass output.

The amp was also connected using the high level input option. All connections were done right behind the radio except for the power cables which was connected to the battery.

So far I am happy with the setup but I wish the AUX function (possibly firmware issue) sounded better. I am experiencing a noise issue (present since new, no upgrades to stock system). I hear a constant hiss when using the AUX function. The noise is not present when playing CD or SAT radio.
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I feel your frustration after having spent $7K, ouch. I'm sure your installers know how to properly adjust the gain on the amplifier (s). There is a proper way and the guesstimate way.

If I am not mistaken, incorrect gain adjustments will make a nice setup sound like garbage because the system will be clipping (will sound bad, a lot of distortion) the speakers at high volume.

You should revisit the amp gain adjustments. Look up the proper way to adjust on Google. Here is one website with useful information.

How to Set Your Gains

I had a similar issue when I installed my setup. The culprit was the Line Out Converter (LOC) (high level to low RCA level). since the amplifiers were already capable of accepting high level inputs I removed the LOC and used the amp crossover adjustments and my problems dissapeared. Before, my system didn't sound good no matter how much I tweaked it.

Good luck!
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