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  1. #1
    Master of My Domain
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    Default Upgrading your OEM car speakers

    So you want to replace your factory speakers? You dont know what is good and whats junk? Well here we will discuss whats what in the speaker world.

    The most important thing is to plan ahead. Know what your going to buy. If you do not plan on running an amp to your interior speakers then it would not be wise to buy 1000 Watt 6X9's!

    The first consideration is stock speaker locations. This is the best place to start. You will need to find out what fits your space. There are a variety of speaker sizes out there now. 3 1/2", 4", 51/4", 61/2", 4X6", 5X7", 6X8", 6X9", 4X10" and Im sure there are others. Acess what you need. A good place to look is at Crutchfield online. www.crutchfield.com . They will tell you what fits and what doesnt.

    Next you will need to determine how you like your sound. If you like your music crisp you will want to get speakers with tweeters. Some have none, some have one, others have two! As a general rule, more is more $. So keep that in mind also.

    In the car audio world it is common practice to image your sound system. By this I mean set a sound stage. This is done by keeping the front speakers louder than the rear. Think of it as a concert. You wouldnt want to sit there backwards. A common practice is also to make the rear "fill" sound mono. Thus all imaging (between right and left) channels are coming from the front.

    How to tell whats what....
    Look at the frequency response on the speakers. Hz is a measure of the sound. The lower numbers represent low frequencies (bass) while the highs represent the tone in the system. The human ear is capable of 20Hz-20,000 Hz (20 Khz). Most speakers run around 50Hz-20Khz. While some may get up to 32Khz! The front speakers you dont want much low end. 80Hz on up is suitable for front speakers. In the rear though is where you want the bass. Bass will distort any speakers! What is ideal is to filter out as much bass without losing the actual lyrics in the song. Most lyrics on tracks are around 150 Hz or so, on up to 300 Hz or so. The rear speakers would be suitable at 50 Hz.

    Power handling. This is another important area. If you underpower speakers they wont be loud! I mean you do not want 1000 watt 6X9's running off your 45 watt reciever! Most Speakers nowdays are in the 80-150 Watts RMS range. Most Head Units claim to be 45Wattsx4- But in all Reality they are running about 10-15 Watts RMS. Usually a Head Unit is sufficent enough to produce decent results. However if you Amplify your new Speakers you will find them to be much cleaner and louder overall. Amplifying your speakers is a good option providing you have the funds to do so.

    Onto a tangent topic: Speaker Shape- Round vs Oval
    It is common knowledge that Round Speakers produce better sound over their Oval counterparts. While you may loose out on cone area they just sound better- and that is the matter of the fact. Also Round speakers are less likely to Distort Cones while in use, another reason why they sound better. Under pressure the Oval Cones can and will flex. This degrades sound quality. It is ALWAYS reccomended that if you can avoid Oval Speakers do so! From custom plates to buying pre-fabbed plates. There is a market out there, and pre-fabbed plates are available by Scoshe!

    This article was intended for the novices.

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    Last edited by Ryan from Ohio; 10-06-04 at 09:04 AM.

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