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Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Old 04-29-2012, 12:11 AM
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Default Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

1) Hi, how would I be able to keep my stock head unit, and still have good sound after upgrading the speakers?

2) Or conversely, is it possible to achieve good sound by upgrading the head unit, but keeping the stock speakers?

Thanks
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Old 04-29-2012, 01:09 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

changing the speakers will give you the biggest gain in sound quality.. next step would be to add an amplifier.. then a sub.. changing the deck is the last thing on the list. decks are more of a feature pick than a sound one.
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Old 04-29-2012, 12:21 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

What watt RMS would I be looking at for the speakers if I keep the stock head unit? I heard it is worse to underpower than to overpower speakers. I can't remember the reasoning.
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:44 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by ef_newb View Post
changing the speakers will give you the biggest gain in sound quality..
Not so.

Replacing the HU and keeping the stock speaker will make a much bigger diff. in SQ and SPL, [this assumes speakers are good].

The stock HU is very underpowered so driving the internal amp into constant clipping, [distortion] is easy to do.

OP if your dead set on keeping the stock HU, look into getting even a small 4ch amp and one of the "interface" moduals that are avalable, something like the JL Audio Clean Sweep, then upgrading the speakers would be worth it. 94
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Old 04-30-2012, 12:14 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by fcm View Post
Not so.

Replacing the HU and keeping the stock speaker will make a much bigger diff. in SQ and SPL, [this assumes speakers are good].

The stock HU is very underpowered so driving the internal amp into constant clipping, [distortion] is easy to do.

OP if your dead set on keeping the stock HU, look into getting even a small 4ch amp and one of the "interface" moduals that are avalable, something like the JL Audio Clean Sweep, then upgrading the speakers would be worth it. 94
This ^

But, honestly, most stock speakers are crap. What car do you have? Like fcm said, by replacing just the head unit, you'll definitely notice a difference in the quality of sound from your speakers because your new head unit is pushing more watts to your speakers.

Honda's speakers are practically paper and magnet. I ditched it all and got a new head unit and powered all my speakers through a JL Audio amp.

so to answer your question

1. Yes, if you buy a good brand of speakers, but note, your new speakers won't work to they're full potential because your stock head unit is preventing them from getting their top performance ( because your stock head unit doesn't push out a lot of watts)

2. Sorta... If you get a aftermarket head unit. Your speakers WILL sound better. But nothinc crazy. But definitely noticeable.. You can even get a cheap Dual stereo from Wal-mart and you'll hear improvement.
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Old 04-30-2012, 01:22 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

more power does NOT equal better sound.. it means louder. if it sounds like **** now, it's going to sound like louder **** after. the poor sound comes from poor speaker materials (flimsy paper cone, foam surround, whizzer cone, etc..) if you want better sound, you buy speakers made with better components. it's not rocket science guys. duh
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Old 04-30-2012, 03:32 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by ef_newb View Post
more power does NOT equal better sound.. it means louder. if it sounds like **** now, it's going to sound like louder **** after. the poor sound comes from poor speaker materials (flimsy paper cone, foam surround, whizzer cone, etc..) if you want better sound, you buy speakers made with better components. it's not rocket science guys. duh
Wrong again.

Although stock speakers are nothing to get excited about, they have less to do with SQ and SPL then the source does.

With OEM HUs the weak link is the HU, not a big problem if you do not crank it up, but as soon as you drive that internal amp into clipping SQ goes for a ****. 94
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Old 04-30-2012, 07:41 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

which must be why all the crazy high end home speakers out there are paper cones with whizzers on them..

the level of dumb here is ridiculous.
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Old 05-01-2012, 06:06 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Listen up n0ob, I have been installing car audio for over 30 years, most likely when you were still just your dads wet dream, I was installing an SPL system.

Don't be calling us dumb when you do not know what you are talking about, it makes you sound like the dumb one.

If you think you know what your talking about, put your car where your mouth is.

Pick any car with a stock system, you put in whatever speakers you want, I will install an aftermarket HU, [same car same stock system], we run them through a sound competition, winner walks away with losers car.

I have always wanted a 90 Civic for a DD. nuff said 94

Last edited by fcm; 05-01-2012 at 06:07 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 05-01-2012, 08:46 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

and AGAIN for the slow kids .. louder =/= better

that's why 90% of uneducated people walk into my sound rooms and think infinity ref speakers are teh_awsums because the tweeter is bright as hell. they hear it play louder at the same volume setting on the deck, and they go gaga for them. it's up to the professional to point out the rest of the music.. tell them to focus on the kick drum while you switch to that very same infinity and watch the look of disappointment grow across their face.

but hey, you keep on with that old school mentality .. bet that gets you all kinds of sweet by9 sales. maybe some sweet a-pillar tweets as well.. what shop do you work for?




for the record i didn't say YOU were dumb.. just that there was a lot of dumb in the thread. i was actually referring to the antiquated theories bouncing around.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:17 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

I have an Acura EL aka Sportier Luxurious version of Honda Civic. It has the same 6.5 coaxials upfront and the 6x9s in the back which are powered by the stock amp.

I also have OEM tweeters that sit behind the sidemirrors that I purchased seperately.

I want better sound but I don't want to spend a whole lot. I want to keep the factory look just so I don't have to worry about theft as much (low profile) and having to take the faceplate off all the time. But I also like the idea of Bluetooth that come with aftermarket decks.

However, if I can keep the factory headunit, that would be great. Would I really need one of those interfaces like the JL Audio Cleansweep? What is the advantage of that versus just straight connecting the factory deck to a 4 channel amp fore say. Would I be able to control sound through my factory deck still like volume, and bass, treble, and balance?


Also, I don't need anything very loud. I like better sound versus loudness so what speakers/amps would you reccomend? I want to get component speakers for the front. I am looking to buy off Sonic Electronix.
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:45 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

You can keep the factory "look" by keeping the stock speakers or replacing them with aftermarkets that will fit the stock locations.

Units like the Clean Sweep will "clean up" the stock HUs amped signal and step it down to a preamp signal to drive aftermarket amplifiers and speakers, this can also be done by just using a LOC, [line output converter] or the built in LOC that some amps have, the problem with LOCs is the SQ you get when using them.

Unfortunately the main limiting factor for good SQ in a stock system is the stock HU, it's lack of power, [RMS watts] being the main problem.

The advantages of an aftermarket HU outweigh any disadvantages, [like having to remove a faceplate].

One big advantage is you can build the system a piece at a time, find the HU that has the features you want/need like Bluetooth and iPod control maybe and so on, install it and have a listen, you will be surprised at how good the stock speakers sound once they have a decent HU driving them, if the stock speakers are just not doing it for you, you can definatly inprove on them, then replace them, starting with a front set.

Keep in mind if you replace the stock speakers, you may also have to add an amp, depending on the speakers you get.

Again the advantage of starting with an aftermarket HU is you can easily build onto the system, and no matter what anybody tells you, the source is the most important part of your audio system.

One more thing, you would be far better off paying a little more and getting your audio gear from an authorized retailer, SonicElectronix is not an authorized retailer for most of what they sell so no manufactuers warranty on that product.
You should carefully read warranty and return policies of any place you buy from, check out to hoops your going to have to jump through to return someting to SonicElectronix... http://www.sonicelectronix.com/return-policy 94
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Old 05-03-2012, 10:21 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

^ Well said, I don't think it can get much simpler than that.
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:16 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

I've decided to keep the factory headunit to keep the stealth look.

So my question is, is it possible to get the same sort of sound as an aftermarket headunit if I get a sound processor and a amp?

Also, what is a good site to buy audio instead of Sonic Electronix? I want a place where I can buy everything, and buying locally is not an option due to prices, and poor selection. Also, I live in Canada, so I don't get free shipping like some of these places offer, and that's why I prefer to keep the purchase in one place to save on the shipping.
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Old 05-03-2012, 03:58 PM
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:35 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

I have had very good results using the JL Audio CleanSweep with 1, 2, 4, 5 channel amps and combinations of amps, in both high and low power systems, [2x50W RMS to well over 1000w RMS] even a couple DB drag systems.

As mentioned, Crutchfield... http://www.google.ca/search?sourceid...0&aqi=g4&pbx=1 last time I checked they were authorized dealers for everything they sold. 94
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Old 05-03-2012, 04:42 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by an_orange_s2k View Post
I would have to purchase from www.crutchfield.ca since I am from Canada, and the selection there is seriously lacking compared to the main site.

About the Cleansweep, I am reading you can't control the volume from the headunit? then how is it done?
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Old 05-03-2012, 07:12 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

If your not worried about budget. Go for cdt components. I went to an audio forum and they helped me pick those out over JBL components like JBL was no competition. And holy **** I don't regret it. CDT audio owns.
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:18 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by SportEL View Post
I would have to purchase from www.crutchfield.ca since I am from Canada, and the selection there is seriously lacking compared to the main site.

About the Cleansweep, I am reading you can't control the volume from the headunit? then how is it done?
With the master volume control that it comes with
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There are other units, [brands] that also do a good job, you may want to check them out, a good one is going to cost you about the same as a HU.

Yea I know what you mean about selection, but only because I check, I never buy on-line.
I prefer to see what I am getting, getting it when I pay for it, know the saleman and/or local retail shop I am getting it from, [so I know where to go and who to see if I have a problem] yea I pay a little more but like my sig. says, you get what you pay for. 94
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Old 05-03-2012, 09:30 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

What do you think about the Audiocontrol brand? The company specializes in sound processing.
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Old 05-04-2012, 04:53 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by SportEL View Post
What do you think about the Audiocontrol brand? The company specializes in sound processing.
Audiocontrol makes very good products, you can't really go wrong with their sound processing equipment. 94
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Old 05-04-2012, 09:41 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Is the following comparable to Cleansweep? --->http://www.audiocontrol.com/t34/1761...r----LC6i.html
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Old 05-05-2012, 07:11 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Yes it will do the job, and without an off-board volume control. 94
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Old 05-05-2012, 08:13 AM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by ef_newb View Post
and AGAIN for the slow kids .. louder =/= better

that's why 90% of uneducated people walk into my sound rooms and think infinity ref speakers are teh_awsums because the tweeter is bright as hell. they hear it play louder at the same volume setting on the deck, and they go gaga for them. it's up to the professional to point out the rest of the music.. tell them to focus on the kick drum while you switch to that very same infinity and watch the look of disappointment grow across their face.

but hey, you keep on with that old school mentality .. bet that gets you all kinds of sweet by9 sales. maybe some sweet a-pillar tweets as well.. what shop do you work for?




for the record i didn't say YOU were dumb.. just that there was a lot of dumb in the thread. i was actually referring to the antiquated theories bouncing around.
Do you have any idea how an amp works? If I have a stock headunit pushing 8w rms with 20% THD vs an aftermarket that can push the same wattage with .01% THD, which one is better? You're right, louder does NOT equal better, but more wattage does not always equal more volume.
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Old 05-08-2012, 08:10 PM
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Default Re: Keeping Stock Head Unit and Upgrading Speakers?

Originally Posted by ef_newb View Post
the level of dumb here is ridiculous.
so quit posting!!!

No stock headunit produces the 50x4 that they say they do. Headunit will make the biggest difference for the buck. Upgrading the speakers won't make much of a difference until you add a amp.

Originally Posted by Masho View Post
If your not worried about budget. Go for cdt components. I went to an audio forum and they helped me pick those out over JBL components like JBL was no competition. And holy **** I don't regret it. CDT audio owns.
I wouldn't wipe my *** with JBL!!
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