Simple Audio Upgrade [$1000 budget]

madchiller

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I'm not an audiophile but I would like some extra bass and some nicer sounds in the Si. I've been trying to find a simple solution that is compact, clean, and very simple. I've come across the following on Crutchfield.com so pricing could be lower/higher if I source items locally. They total $870 plus any shipping if needed. I assume the PWD-X5 would sit under the passenger seat and then all the wires would go to the speakers from there and make this a somewhat clean install.

Looking for some feedback from the audio guys that have more experience. I'd like to keep all the brands the same and not mix-and-match but I'm not attached to any single brand.

  • Alpine PWD-X5 [$650]
    • Compact powered 8" subwoofer with digital signal processor and 5-channel amp
    • 25 watts RMS x 4 + 165 watts RMS x 1
    • dimensions: 9-5/8"W x 3-1/4"H x 13-5/8"D
  • Alpine S-S65C [$140]
    • S-Series 6-1/2" component speaker system
    • handles up to 80 watts RMS (240 watts peak power)
  • Alpine S-S40 [$80]
    • S-Series 4" 2-way car speakers
    • handles up to 45 watts RMS (140 watts peak power)

txIpGG5.png

 

rwk226

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While you can't usually go wrong with Alpine, I feel you could do better with this setup. You're gonna need a LOC if you're still using the stock radio, then a good 5-channel amplifier, and most importantly a decent subwoofer system. Stick with those speakers as they are just fine, but consider this:
This Kenwood Excelon (or any 5 channel amplifier that can handle 40x4 at 4ohm + 300w subwoofer channel);
This Pioneer TS (or any subwoofer + box combo you desire that has an RMS of what your 5 channel has);
And honestly, the most important part:
This Audiocontrol LC7i 6 channel LOC. This is most important when utilizing stock radio, as this will give you as clean (and controlled) line-out as possible for your amplifiers. This will not only allow you to work around the factory radio's crappy EQ/bass roll-off (meant to protect cheap stock speakers), but it will allow you to have a similar experience to an aftermarket radio WITHOUT losing any of the stock radio features.

$1,000-1,500 is a good budget to have for a system like this, a relative of mine has a 2017 Sport that he spent $1500 on for 4 components + 4 tweeters, aftermarket radio, speaker amplifier, and two 12" subwoofers powered by its own amplifier, and used whatever he had left on sound-deadening. The sky (and your wallet) is the limit!
 
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madchiller

madchiller

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I'd rather not have anything in the trunk as far as a subwoofer so that's why i went with the Alpine PWD-X5 for space saving as the idea would be to stuff it under the seat. I'll definately add the LC7i to the list of parts needed.
 

rwk226

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I'd rather not have anything in the trunk as far as a subwoofer so that's why i went with the Alpine PWD-X5 for space saving as the idea would be to stuff it under the seat. I'll definately add the LC7i to the list of parts needed.
The only problem with one of those under-seat AIOs is the sheer lack of response. Sure it'll generate some sound, but it will NEVER be the same as what a dedicated subwoofer and box can ever do. If you don't mind that, then an underseat unit will do you fine. If you want to feel your bass at all, go with either an 8" or even 10" in a decent box.
 


ebatr24

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I think you could axe the rear, trust me you won't get much out of them and do one of these mini amps with a bigger sub woofer. Invest the money in some sound deadening and sealing material for your front doors and maybe a center speaker.

1640730582622.png
 
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madchiller

madchiller

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The only problem with one of those under-seat AIOs is the sheer lack of response. Sure it'll generate some sound, but it will NEVER be the same as what a dedicated subwoofer and box can ever do. If you don't mind that, then an underseat unit will do you fine. If you want to feel your bass at all, go with either an 8" or even 10" in a decent box.
im not big on audio so really anything is going to be better for me. i would like to hear the speakers with the windows down while cruising without having to crank it up past 25 and getting the distortion.

I think you could axe the rear, trust me you won't get much out of them and do one of these mini amps with a bigger sub woofer. Invest the money in some sound deadening and sealing material for your front doors and maybe a center speaker.
this is definately a very good option. sound deadening for the doors and possibly the floor near the sub is on the list too. center speaker is also needing to be replaced. i forgot all about that crappy rattling mess.
 

ebatr24

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Sealing the door with some soundskins or similar material will do more than just help with rattle. You will get much better mid bass, and a cleaner sound. The center speaker surprisingly makes a nice difference in clarity as well. I did my center speaker, front speakers, tweeters, sealed the door with sound material, and the mini amp under the seat. It will get real loud and sounds great. Everyone says they aren't big on audio until they start upgrading their sound the right way, before you know it you're going down the rabbit hole of wanting a full on audio build.
 
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madchiller

madchiller

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... before you know it you're going down the rabbit hole of wanting a full on audio build.
i've already put over $15k into the car so not going to spend much more on audio unless something really cool and i gotta have it. :) still waiting on honda to give us wireless carplay.
 

bikejog

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Or you could install a low profile sub in the trunk, like this one from Kicker. https://www.crutchfield.com/p_20648TP122/Kicker-48TRTP122.html?tp=64078

I have one and am happy with it. I just have it hook up to the stock sub output. It won't shake the seats, but will shake the side and rearview mirrors if I turn it up a few notches. I was looking for a sub to round out the bottom end and it delivered that and more. But you probably need to amp it fed by the front + sub signals. I posted a pic of it in my trunk. You can use the search feature to find that post.
 


Chris_19Si

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I went with Image Dynamics ID components up front and their ID 10" sub for the trunk. The Metra Electronics 82-7805 speaker adapter helped get the 6.5's into the doors and I added the InstallBay Acoustic Speaker Baffles to protect them. The tweeters just pressed right into the stock mounting locations without any modifications. You will have to trim some metal to get the 6.5's into the doors, but there won't be any interference with the windows going down. I ran 16ga wire to each speaker and ditched the passive crossover. I have an Audio Control LC-5.1300 amp ordered to replace the cheap amp I initially had, and decided to run a secondary head unit (MB Quart GMR-LED) to get around the crappy processing from the factory amp (see my thread for the secondary HU install). I left all the remaining speakers connected to the factory setup for NAVI and calls. I just use the secondary system for music. Sounded great before the cheap amp had problems. The Audio Control amp should resolve the issues I had with the old amp, and give me a bump in power.

An independent sub in the trunk is a must to round off the bottom end. I installed a few rivet nuts in the rear deck from underneath and bent up a few brackets to mount the amp under the rear deck. Pretty clean and well ventilated. Thought about stuffing it in the spare tire well, but just not enough clearance to keep the amp cool. After I installed the Hasport 82a motor mounts, the noise level in the cabin forced me to upgrade the sound system to get above the new ambient level. I measured 76dB at 83mph, with no music, just the car with the windows rolled up. 86dB is where the music plays nicely while parked in my driveway with the car off. Not sure what I'll have to turn it up to in order to overcome the ambient noises. Need the extra power from the new amp to help sort that out. Be sure to spend the money on the LC7i to integrate into the factory unit. That should help with the processing you will need to flatten things out and merge the different factory speaker outputs for better crossover control. Probably how I should have started my project out.
 

Kikonio2

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Or you could install a low profile sub in the trunk, like this one from Kicker. https://www.crutchfield.com/p_20648TP122/Kicker-48TRTP122.html?tp=64078

I have one and am happy with it. I just have it hook up to the stock sub output. It won't shake the seats, but will shake the side and rearview mirrors if I turn it up a few notches. I was looking for a sub to round out the bottom end and it delivered that and more. But you probably need to amp it fed by the front + sub signals. I posted a pic of it in my trunk. You can use the search feature to find that post.
Do you have any pics/more details about your install?
 
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madchiller

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Do you have any pics/more details about your install?
i haven't had the opportunity to do much more research so i'm kinda in a holding pattern until i find a setup i like for a decent price.
 

86salmon

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These tweeters are great bang for the buck

https://www.parts-express.com/Peerless-XT25SC40-04-1-Ring-Radiator-XT-Tweeter-4-Ohm-264-1642

I finally installed a set a month or two ago, and the difference in accuracy/clarity is shocking. They are unfortunately out of stock until August.

These Alpines are supposed to be the same thing

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Pair-alpin...2349624.m46890.l49286&mkrid=711-127632-2357-0

Speaking of Alpine, the Type S component is pretty good bang for the buck.. The other previously mentioned kits are decent as well.

I went down a rabbit hole on diyma looking for what to pair with those tweets (I'm not even sure how I heard about them...🤣) and ended up getting 6 5 woofers on sale from CDT.

A lot of the affordable diyma picks, for me anyway, depend on what you feel comfortable with fabricating and installing.

For ease, Crutchfield and a known brand's drop-in set have that in spades

 

 
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