audiophiles! much needed judgement requested inside! (project car stereo system)

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1549
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audiophiles! much needed judgement requested inside! (project car stereo system)

Postby 1549 » Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:35 pm

Hello! i am pleased to say this is my first post, and that I have registered here to get some injected knowledgeof the new car stereo world!

I have not been involved with car stereos in over seven years, before that I had a pretty good understanding and feel of what was out there and I still understand the basic concepts but lack the advanced knowledge of imaging and tuning.

I have a project camaro that I have been working on for the past eight months, and I am now at the point where the planned stereo system has come into play. I have listed below the basic setup of the car and how I plan to outfit it, flame suit is on and ready for suggestions!


'98 camaro

locations of speakers:

Q-forms kick panels are needed in the front, no room for components otherwise

6 1/2" round openings to the sides of the back seat

4 1/2" round openings in the back sail panel underneath the hatch



tentative plans:

alpine 9885 cd deck

5 1/4" infinity kappa perfect components up front, run me around $250.00 for a good deal. had basic kappa components in an old system, highs and mids were amazing with almost no mid bass. i know i gotta compensate the speakers some for midbass and bass.
100 watts rms rating, at 2 ohms resistance


6 1/2" woofers, thinking of bazooka brand woofers, I didnt want anything with mids and highs because I *think* it would pull the sound imaging toward the rear seats and I want the best sound up front. 75 watts rms rating at 4 ohms. these run me around 120 bucks a set.


4 1/2" coaxial speakers in the hatch, i thought id be able to use the smaller speaker/tweeter setup with a 4 1/2" coaxial to provide some fill sound. looking at infinity reference setup back there, 80 bucks or so for the set and 60 watts rms rating


amplifiers:

300x4 JL audio amp, pushing 75 watts to the front and 75 to the woofers in the back seat.

alpine deck powering the 4 1/2" speakers in the back, 25 watts rms.




in the future, or if this system doesnt provide enough bass, ill add a JL audio 10w3 in a custom sealed enclosure with another JL audio monoblock amp pushing about 500 watts to the sub with a 1.2 farad tsunami capacitor.


one area I am unsure of is the amplifier wiring kit, and speaker wires, I think it would be best to spend some cash for nice rca cords and good speaker wire. dont know what has a good reputation out there but the ones I was looking at gave me about 120 bucks for the rca patch cord set in a 16 foot length and two bucks a foot for twisted speaker wire in 14 guage.

let me know what you guys think!
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KU40
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Postby KU40 » Tue Jun 03, 2008 10:55 pm

Don't waste your money on a capacitor, twisted speaker wire, or for goodness sakes 120 dollar RCA's! speaker wire is speaker wire, as are RCAs for the most part. I'm still rockin' 14 dollar RCA's from 6 years ago and have had no noise problems at all. A capacitor will do you no good. If you have a V8 in that camaro I know it comes with a large alternator so you'll be fine current-wise, especially since you look to be running only 300-800 watts.

Also, the 4 1/2 inch speakers in the very back aren't needed either. If you want true sound, just do components up front. If you want some fill I'd say put 6.5" coaxials in the back seats. I know you want midbass but there really isn't a humongous difference between 6.5 and 5.25" woofers. Where were the speakers located up front in that car? I thought they were in the doors? or are they in the dash?
-Nick aka NS1 aka mopey aka speedbump
Alpine CDA-9827
Crossfire CFQ5.2
JL Audio XR 650csi components, Planet Audio TT2300
Crossfire VR404 on factory rear 6x8's until I get them upgraded
SI 15D2 + 3.8 @ 30 hz + Crossfire BMF 1000D = :)
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1549
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Postby 1549 » Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:49 am

the stock speaker locations are in the front doors and they house a 5 1/4" speaker with no mounts for a tweeter, and id really rather use a component system. the q-forms run around 200 bucks, and id rather pay the money for those than run any type of coaxial up front.

good to hear about the wiring, i went with a cheaper pair of rca's and speaker wire in the old system with the kappas, and it sounded great but I got some background "white" noise that i could pick up if the volume was low, and when the stereo was off I could hear alternator whine. I ran the power wires as far away from the rca cords as possible, so i figured that a real high quality shielded rca cord set was needed to keep the system clean. if i go with a cheaper pair of rca cords and wire, what can i do to avoid having a background noise problem again? granted, my old amplifier was a profile, which was a two hundred buck cheapie from crutchfield, but it gave great clean sound when you could drown out the background noise.

i wanted some fill because the kappa components I had from the old system lacked a lot of midbass and bass, I assumed the kappa perfect components would be the same. im not set on the kappa perfects, Ive also considered a focal k2 setup. i honed in on the kappa perfects because the kappa system I had before was flat out amazing. the tweeters and mids were blended together amazingly well, and i have never, ever heard sound quality like that come out of any system in a car. you could pop in a good santana song with some natural guitar, vocals, and drums and it blew my socks off. ive heard 500 dollar sets of mb quartz components that didnt hold a candle to the kappas, so I figure the kappa perfect series would be well worth the money.

if I put coaxials in the back seats would I lose the imaging up front? or would it compliment the system nicely?

thanks for the suggestions, any input on speakers would also be great brand-wise. I dont have a clue what is out there anymore for quality.
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KU40
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Postby KU40 » Wed Jun 04, 2008 7:52 am

Most background noise and alternator whine is due to a bad ground. If you have that, try regrounding your head unit, and if you have multiple amps make sure they're grounded to the same spot and with a solid ground themselves. Finally, sometimes lower quality equipment is more prone to noise, like you suggested.

I'll tell you what you could do up front is do a 3-way set. Put your kappa perfects into the kick panels, but put a dedicated 5.25" midbass into the factory door spot. Try looking at madisound.com and partsexpress.com for some drivers. In order to get the best sound from these you'll want to sound deaden the door, and cover up the holes on the inner door panel. That will give you more of a true IB setup instead of basically having them run free air, which will give you much better midbass response.

Then if you put coaxials in the back you can always fade the sound to the front a little so that you don't hear them as much. You could also put a highpass on them at like 200 hz if you wanted, which would give you just the midbass. You can try out both scenarios if you get a coaxial. Just because it has a tweeter doesn't mean you have to use it. :)

Many people don't like rear fill because they think don't like that it pulls the soundstage to the rear, and that's not "real concert sound." I, however, like a little bit of rear fill. I like to be immersed in my music on all sides. I've found that a nice front stage can do that by itself........until you turn your head to the side.
-Nick aka NS1 aka mopey aka speedbump

Alpine CDA-9827

Crossfire CFQ5.2

JL Audio XR 650csi components, Planet Audio TT2300

Crossfire VR404 on factory rear 6x8's until I get them upgraded

SI 15D2 + 3.8 @ 30 hz + Crossfire BMF 1000D = :)
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nismo
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Postby nismo » Wed Jun 04, 2008 11:35 am

Jlaine is a great person to ask about door speakers. He mounted 10" Adire Brahma subs into his front doors (99 Firebird IIRC). There's plenty of room in those doors, and Qforms suck.

Save your money from the Qforms and get a really nice midbass/tweet setup. KU40 has given some really good advice to you!

Eric
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1549
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Postby 1549 » Wed Jun 04, 2008 1:49 pm

KU40 wrote:Most background noise and alternator whine is due to a bad ground. If you have that, try regrounding your head unit, and if you have multiple amps make sure they're grounded to the same spot and with a solid ground themselves. Finally, sometimes lower quality equipment is more prone to noise, like you suggested.

I'll tell you what you could do up front is do a 3-way set. Put your kappa perfects into the kick panels, but put a dedicated 5.25" midbass into the factory door spot. Try looking at madisound.com and partsexpress.com for some drivers. In order to get the best sound from these you'll want to sound deaden the door, and cover up the holes on the inner door panel. That will give you more of a true IB setup instead of basically having them run free air, which will give you much better midbass response.

Then if you put coaxials in the back you can always fade the sound to the front a little so that you don't hear them as much. You could also put a highpass on them at like 200 hz if you wanted, which would give you just the midbass. You can try out both scenarios if you get a coaxial. Just because it has a tweeter doesn't mean you have to use it. :)

Many people don't like rear fill because they think don't like that it pulls the soundstage to the rear, and that's not "real concert sound." I, however, like a little bit of rear fill. I like to be immersed in my music on all sides. I've found that a nice front stage can do that by itself........until you turn your head to the side.



ive been told before a ground issue can cause that, i think that may have been my problem before...ill be writing that down to remember it.
I hadnt thought about putting another speaker into the stock door location... I like that idea. I looked at both of those sites and have yet to find just a woofer, everything is coaxial or triaxial but I could install a crossover, or use the ones on the amp to cut out the higher frequencies like you said.

if this was your car, would you use the q-forms? what would you put in the back seat location? how exactly would you outfit it?

also, why would you say that the Q-forms suck, nismo? i dont think ill be interested in hacking up my door for a subwoofer but if the q-forms are that bad I might be interested in modding the doors to accept a flush mount tweeter as well. just as long as I can do it and make it clean and factory looking im interested in it.
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Postby KU40 » Wed Jun 04, 2008 2:12 pm

I can't really use q-forms in my cars because I'm pretty tall and have big feet, haha. I don't know nismo's experiences, but I know q-forms have a bad reputation for having weak midbass. But I think if you had a dedicated midbass in the door, that should cover it.

If it were my car....hmm. Well for the easy part, I'd just run coaxials in the backseat. Up front, I really can't decide between two options. The first is to just get a 5.25" component set and put the mid in the door and the tweeter up higher on the door. In my Explorer I have the tweeter in that little plastic triangle piece on the lower right corner of the driver's window. In my old car I just drilled a couple small holes in the door panel above the woofer and put the tweeter there. The second option would be to put 5.25" components into the q-form and then a dedicated 5.25" midbass in the door location. That idea is intriguing to me because it's more complex and uses a dedicated midbass, which I like. I think that one would be more fun. But like I said I have big feet so I don't think I'd like q-forms. But if I were smaller.....I might give it a try.

Oh I was also going to mention about the alternator whine and noise- You can get little things called ground loop isolators for a few bucks. I used one on my old system and it improved the situation.

As for partsexpress.com, try going to the link for speakers, not car audio. that section should have individual drivers. Sure they are listed as home audio gear, but they work equally well in-car. About all I know from first-hand experience is with Vifa (any of their drivers are good) and Dayton (the references are kickass). They may come with shielded magnets but you can just knock the shielding off since you're using it in a vehicle. Some of the speakers even come with or without the shielding. Madisound I haven't navigated much but I know there are raw drivers on there, and pretty much any of their stuff is good. About all I've heard is about scan-speak, Morel, and Seas, and it's all good.
-Nick aka NS1 aka mopey aka speedbump

Alpine CDA-9827

Crossfire CFQ5.2

JL Audio XR 650csi components, Planet Audio TT2300

Crossfire VR404 on factory rear 6x8's until I get them upgraded

SI 15D2 + 3.8 @ 30 hz + Crossfire BMF 1000D = :)
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1549
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Postby 1549 » Thu Jun 05, 2008 2:05 am

awesome. thanks to both of you for the info. out of curiousity, if I do go the path of the q-forms, can I line them (and the floor area that the q-forms sit on top of) with a sound deadner and stiffen up the bass response? or am I dealing with some other inherent problem with the q-forms?
I also dont like anything as expensive as a nice speaker set directly in line with my feet, but if the sound imaging is much better there as opposed to a door panel location ill deal with it and beat my passengers if they kick 'em.:cwm22:

ive had a hard time getting much info on component system brands and their reputations. so far what ive gathered is that i am not going to get many straight answers, and many conflicting ones, so id guess this is because im essentially doing the same thing as asking a mechanic "my car makes a funny clank sound- what is it?" and ill get no where asking about brand reccomendations because what one person likes the other may hate. with that said, I have two thoughts on this right now:

infinity kappa perfects
or
focal k2's

with

some form of 6 1/2" coax in back, tuned to my likeing with the amplifier crossover and/or reciever tuning to provide some midbass and bass

and

JL audio 300x4 amp pushing about 75 watts to each corner.

i figure ill get that installed first and then ponder the subwoofer selection. i want to wait until i can see exactly what kind of bass output ill have and decide from there how to compliment the system further with the sub.

an issue that ive come across already is that ive heard some heresay about finding second-rate quality speakers on ebay- meaning that ill buy the focals/ kappas and find that they are either ripoffs or castoff rejects from the factory and that id be screwing myself by going that route- but its promising because of the price
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Postby X-OvrDistortion » Thu Jun 05, 2008 7:37 am

Here is my .08

Don't amplify the rear speakers. Run them off HU power.

Image Dynamics makes a good 6.5 component set as well as RE. I am sure there are others, but I like those. Run an amo to those.

Sound deaden the **** out of your car.

http://www.woofersetc.com always has a great selection of speakers.
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1549
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Postby 1549 » Thu Jun 05, 2008 1:57 pm

Thanks for the advice... ive been hearing a lot of people tell me how important it is to use sound deadening. ive gotten a few reference to raamat, ill plan on using some anywhere I mount a speaker and from the sounds of it, especially in the doors. I like the idea of using the HU to power the rear coaxials.

two questions concerning that,

1. do i need to have a reciever that can adjust for differences in time? my logical thinking would be that since I have one signal that goes through an amp and then to the componenets, and another that goes driectly to the coaxials, ill have to adjust somehow for the differences in time otherwise id get some sort of echo effect. is this an issue?

and

2. i keep hearing to run component systems "live." from what I understand that would mean that I would want to use a four channel amplifier to run individual channels to each tweeter and woofer seperately and eliminate the external crossovers entirely. can I get a link to somewhere that would better describe the details on this? i mean, hooking it up like that is simple to me... use the amplifier crossovers to set the desired frequencies for the tweeters and mids individually, but Id like to do some reading on the benefits of this "live" setup. again, thinking with my own logic, I can see where youd get more power to the individual components, and perhaps cleaner since you eliminate splitting a channel and also eliminate a crossover that could degrade sound quality, but id think the external crossover on a nice set of focal's or hertz's would be a better design, specifically engineered for the components they come with; over the crossovers built into the amp.


I just checked out woofersetc, great prices there. I like the fact that the pricing rivals what id see on ebay and its an actual retailer. ive also checked out a place called millionbuy.com, is there any horror stories or warranty issues with that place?

thanks a bunch guys. im learning at a pretty rapid rate out here, and I am grateful for that.

1549

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