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New Sound System Upgrade


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I've seen a few topics in here related to 986's sound system. So I'd like to contribute my latest work and get this topic going. I know this has been discussed many times, but I thought this Install was a little different.

For your car stereo system to perform better and be efficient, you need an active crossover, also referred to as an electronic crossover. Oh what a mess it will be when your 2 way speakers and mid-range speakers duplicate many of the same frequencies! How about when your mid-range speaker attempts to put out high notes that your tweeters are supposed to handle.

What u want is you're sitting in a car outfitted with an audio system where everything is perfectly synced and tuned correctly. No distortion at low bass, no fuzz at high trebles. Bass should be kicking hard,mids & tweeters should be clear & crisp. In order to get that tuned stage sound , You will need sub+mid+tweet+amp+c-over. Imagine not having a sub-woofer for your 5.1 home theater. I guess that will be the closest comparison to not having a sub in your 986 cabin. So 1st step would be building a sub-woofer enclosure.

First I thought about building 1 in the passenger foot-well, but it wasn't really inviting for anybody taller than 5'8''+ hate to be that passenger if I ever get into an accident! and behind the seat was out of my question it's already tight as it is.

There are many materials you can use to house your sub-woofer. One of the most common is fiberglass. There are many advantages of a fiberglass sub-woofer enclosure when compared to one made of solid wood.

Space

One of the first advantages of a fiberglass sub-woofer enclosure is space. Wooden enclosures are just built to fit in your trunk. A fiberglass sub-woofer enclosure can be molded to the shape of your vehicle. This will maximize the amount of space you have available in your car.

So I better get it started ,,,

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Edited by juniinc
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Interesting... thanks for including photos.

Do you already have the driver selected that will fit into this enclosure? I'm curious as to what you'll be using.

Just a couple suggestions. Take them for what they are... How do you plan to mount the enclosure in place? You may want to consider molding in some mounting tabs with the fiberglass work that you're doing. Personally I would get some 1" wide by 1/8" thick aluminum bar material from any hardware store. You can bend it easily in a vise. I'd drill mounting holes in the aluminum and make two aluminum tabs that extend out of the top and under the edge of the carpet and then two tabs to extend out of the bottom of the enclosure. These then could be molded right into the enclosure while you're making it or in this case epoxy glued on the back since the enclosure is mostly done now. Some mounting tabs would give you a way to bolt this thing down. With the driver installed it's going to be fairly heavy and I don't see that you have any provision for holding it in place.

Second suggestion - how are you going to actually mount the driver? Unless you really build up the fiberglass on the mounting ring area I doubt the fiberglass is going to hold the driver. With the weight and vibration it will crack with time. Using some reinforcing at the mounting location would be good. I personally would have put an MDF ring above the foam piece you used and fiberglassed over the whole thing. That way the driver could mount through the fiberglass to the MDF and your mounting screws would have something to dig into. Now that you're mostly done though I would recommend using some mat or several layers of cloth to really build up the mounting ring area to make it strong enough, or consider still laminating a layer of MDF or some other material in there for mounting.

Good luck! I think you've still got some challenges ahead of you, but the base so far looks good. It's going to look pretty wild in your car, but nice fiberglass work like this is the standard for high end car audio these days...

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Thanks , yup it is pretty radical & yes work like this is for very high-end cars(Unique Whips!). She well deserves it.

mounting bracket is pretty good idea! As usual you got some concerns Bristol! LOL .

Don't worry I've been doing this for long time,,,Uhm how I'm going to mount it,that will be the easiest thing for this project. Since it was molded around the center console and btw the seats, it is pretty much stable. All u need is some high strength velcro. or remove the carpet then penetrate a bolt in reverse way(like how spare tire is mounted). There are many more options but fabricating a bracket would be out of my option.

I usually use a MDF ring but not lately. what u saw on my pix is a new generation of speaker ring?(hardened+we will add a inner speaker ring later), love the rounded edge for my speaker pod. Yes I got the drivers, since I'm producing these in mass quantity Polk audio DB,Rockford.Kicker competition.JL they r all going to be used - 14" x 7" x 7" = 686" / 1728 = 0.39 CF(perfect for seal tight air volume).

Interesting... thanks for including photos.

Do you already have the driver selected that will fit into this enclosure? I'm curious as to what you'll be using.

Just a couple suggestions. Take them for what they are... How do you plan to mount the enclosure in place? You may want to consider molding in some mounting tabs with the fiberglass work that you're doing. Personally I would get some 1" wide by 1/8" thick aluminum bar material from any hardware store. You can bend it easily in a vise. I'd drill mounting holes in the aluminum and make two aluminum tabs that extend out of the top and under the edge of the carpet and then two tabs to extend out of the bottom of the enclosure. These then could be molded right into the enclosure while you're making it or in this case epoxy glued on the back since the enclosure is mostly done now. Some mounting tabs would give you a way to bolt this thing down. With the driver installed it's going to be fairly heavy and I don't see that you have any provision for holding it in place.

Second suggestion - how are you going to actually mount the driver? Unless you really build up the fiberglass on the mounting ring area I doubt the fiberglass is going to hold the driver. With the weight and vibration it will crack with time. Using some reinforcing at the mounting location would be good. I personally would have put an MDF ring above the foam piece you used and fiberglassed over the whole thing. That way the driver could mount through the fiberglass to the MDF and your mounting screws would have something to dig into. Now that you're mostly done though I would recommend using some mat or several layers of cloth to really build up the mounting ring area to make it strong enough, or consider still laminating a layer of MDF or some other material in there for mounting.

Good luck! I think you've still got some challenges ahead of you, but the base so far looks good. It's going to look pretty wild in your car, but nice fiberglass work like this is the standard for high end car audio these days...

Edited by juniinc
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Don't worry I've been doing this for long time,,,

Are you winging the acoustic design? I've did design (aesthetic) work for Harmon Kardon & JBL some years ago. The "tweaks" (acoustic engineers) put one elluva lot of time into tuning the shape of the boxes, porting, cones, magnets, insulation, proportions, etc, etc. (Truth is, I never quite developed the ear the tweaks had.)

Thinking about joining some audiophile forums, see if I can find someone to help converting my rear storage box into a Bose like sub. Probably a good trick.

Interesting about the powered x-over. Never heard of it. What exactly does it do that a normal x-over doesn’t?

Good luck, PK

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Thanks PK . Am I winning? I think so,,,LOL

what do u mean by powered x-over, Did I mention that? I'M JUST USING a ELECTRONIC CROSSOVER. uhm interesting, converting rear storage into a sub box?

you could probably mold it with fiber=glass but where would u mount the sub? so shallow in there!

Don't worry I've been doing this for long time,,,

Are you winging the acoustic design? I've did design (aesthetic) work for Harmon Kardon & JBL some years ago. The "tweaks" (acoustic engineers) put one elluva lot of time into tuning the shape of the boxes, porting, cones, magnets, insulation, proportions, etc, etc. (Truth is, I never quite developed the ear the tweaks had.)

Thinking about joining some audiophile forums, see if I can find someone to help converting my rear storage box into a Bose like sub. Probably a good trick.

Interesting about the powered x-over. Never heard of it. What exactly does it do that a normal x-over doesn’t?

Good luck, PK

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"since I'm producing these in mass quantity "

What do you mean? Are you making and selling these sub enclosures in mass?

I was thinking of also mounting my subs between the seats with a fiberglass enclosure, but no necessarily that design. Interesting.

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hey POR986, yes these are being sold already! :lol:

"since I'm producing these in mass quantity "

What do you mean? Are you making and selling these sub enclosures in mass?

I was thinking of also mounting my subs between the seats with a fiberglass enclosure, but no necessarily that design. Interesting.

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I'll hand it to you for originality... finding the place to put a sub in a Boxster it a challenge.

Personally I'd go for the rear compartment, but that's me and I like a place to put my stuff in the car given the limited storage and all.

I have designed and built probably 10 sets of home speakers from scratch now and have some knowledge of enclosure design. If you'd like I can plug your driver parameters into some software I use and get you close for volumes of the enclosure. By the looks of the photos it appears that you are going with a sealed enclosure correct?

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thanks for the compliment. Nope it isn't easy.

Rear compartment ? wave passing through our loud engine? I believe it will sound much better inside cabin.

I'll hand it to you for originality... finding the place to put a sub in a Boxster it a challenge.

Personally I'd go for the rear compartment, but that's me and I like a place to put my stuff in the car given the limited storage and all.

I have designed and built probably 10 sets of home speakers from scratch now and have some knowledge of enclosure design. If you'd like I can plug your driver parameters into some software I use and get you close for volumes of the enclosure. By the looks of the photos it appears that you are going with a sealed enclosure correct?

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Thanks PK . Am I winning? I think so,,,LOL

what do u mean by powered x-over, Did I mention that? I'M JUST USING a ELECTRONIC CROSSOVER. uhm interesting, converting rear storage into a sub box?

you could probably mold it with fiber=glass but where would u mount the sub? so shallow in there!

My enquiry was “are you just winGing" it as far as acoustics go. I’m glad you’re winning just the same.

Cross-overs are "electronic" by nature (what else, made of bark?, powered by water?) and a forgone conclusion. I thought maybe you had something new up your sleeve in that they were "electronic". Haven’t messed with speakers in a long time, my mistake.

PK

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LOL , it's all good

Thanks PK . Am I winning? I think so,,,LOL

what do u mean by powered x-over, Did I mention that? I'M JUST USING a ELECTRONIC CROSSOVER. uhm interesting, converting rear storage into a sub box?

you could probably mold it with fiber=glass but where would u mount the sub? so shallow in there!

My enquiry was “are you just winGing" it as far as acoustics go. I’m glad you’re winning just the same.

Cross-overs are "electronic" by nature (what else, made of bark?, powered by water?) and a forgone conclusion. I thought maybe you had something new up your sleeve in that they were "electronic". Haven’t messed with speakers in a long time, my mistake.

PK

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juniinc,

I gotta say man I appreciate all the time, effort and thought you have put into your system. I think I am not alone having concerns with your sub placement. Good subs are big and heavy. I worry that in a high G turn that thing will suddenly break loose from it's mount and beat me to death.

I work with subs often. I have designed many systems from car audio to home theater to Pro sound applications. There is a time and place for them. A sports car is light and fast by design. It should have a sound system that is light and fast also. While most of the time I prefer to listen to the symphony coming from the tailpipe, once in a while I need studio reference quality sound in my car. Better than any system I can buy or build. On those days I use an Ipod and these:http://www.americanmusical.com/item--i-SHU-SCL2CL.html The sound is as clean, quiet, dynamic, and as full range as you can get. They don't weigh much either.

I know, peace officers will frown on this. I suppose I should never exceed the speed limit and mount my front license plate also. Such is life.

Just one mans opinion who's been around the block a time or two. An opinion probably shared by many. Maybe there is a bigger market for your sub systems in all the Hummers and Lincoln Navigators out there. Food for thought. :)

Edited by Topless
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I gotta say man I appreciate all the input & concerns also. lol

yup sometimes its hard being a innovator? I try at least. And it is extremely difficult to mount a sub in a 986. But some1 has to try,,,

Anybody has a better location or better idea? LOL( no trunk lid or door rattling please)

peace officer ? hahaha I could careless, my window is 5%, most of us have no front license plate,desnorkled. I'm sure list can go on & on .

Yes I do own both NAVI & ESCALADE, I guess I'm just big on my system. U should see- I got 2- 15'S(NAVI) , 4 - 12'S for my Escalade.

I thought I was going pretty light & small on this 1 B)

This is what makes the world go around,,,,,

juniinc,

I gotta say man I appreciate all the time, effort and thought you have put into your system. I think I am not alone having concerns with your sub placement. Good subs are big and heavy. I worry that in a high G turn that thing will suddenly break loose from it's mount and beat me to death.

I work with subs often. I have designed many systems from car audio to home theater to Pro sound applications. There is a time and place for them. A sports car is light and fast by design. It should have a sound system that is light and fast also. While most of the time I prefer to listen to the symphony coming from the tailpipe, once in a while I need studio reference quality sound in my car. Better than any system I can buy or build. On those days I use an Ipod and these:http://www.americanmusical.com/item--i-SHU-SCL2CL.html The sound is as clean, quiet, dynamic, and as full range as you can get. They don't weigh much either.

I know, peace officers will frown on this. I suppose I should never exceed the speed limit and mount my front license plate also. Such is life.

Just one mans opinion who's been around the block a time or two. An opinion probably shared by many. Maybe there is a bigger market for your sub systems in all the Hummers and Lincoln Navigators out there. Food for thought. :)

Edited by juniinc
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...While most of the time I prefer to listen to the symphony coming from the tailpipe, once in a while I need studio reference quality sound in my car. Better than any system I can buy or build. On those days I use an Ipod and these:http://www.americanmusical.com/item--i-SHU-SCL2CL.html The sound is as clean, quiet, dynamic, and as full range as you can get. They don't weigh much either.

Lol...No problem to do Topless...Last winter I bolted on an EVO, a set of headers and a Fabspeed exhaust, put in an iPod capable Alpine HU connected to a 6x100W amp in the front boot, and replaced all the speakers in the car with Polk Audio db series drivers. Top up or down I have plenty of juice on tap for crisp, clean sound with a great sound stage......and when my foot hits the pedal hard I can still hear that flat 6 singing it's sweet melody! :thumbup:

...as to the weight, what I gained in the electronic equipment department I more than lost with the exhaust changes.... ;)

Surely have a point on the sub enclosure though. This puppy can generate some serious lateral G forces, and that enclosure has a BIG moment of inertia by the looks of it......

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thanks ! phillipj

Yup I'm pretty satisfied with it, and it's only gonna get better~

2 pairs of tweeters and Hifonics amp is going to get installed today.

it's bolted down tight ,she ain't going no where Andy:lol:

Im sure that those POLKS are doing the job for now, but once u add a real sub woofer in your 986 . You will definately tell the difference or just disconnect your sub from 5.1 home theater system,,,LOL then u will see what I'm talking about !

Beautiful work!
Edited by juniinc
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since my sub is almost finished :lol: , 2nd phase was installing an amplifier. I've always thought u can never have enough power in a 986 - especially with the top down! I thought about a few leading brands out there.

But of course my first choice had to be POWER FROM THE GODS- HIFONICS

The highest performance amplifiers in mobile audio industry in my opinion. Conquering power and unsurpassed performance not found in other brands, the lowest distortion in its class.

Having 10 speakers + a sub woofer ,this time I chose to go with TXI440 - 4 channel bi- amp. I will be in total control with the integrated Accu Cross™ active crossovers. Tweaking the acoustical balance between the vehicle acoustical anomalies, new sub woofer

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MONSTER CABLEs were prefered. First RCA cable ,remote on,speaker cables were routed(driver's side fire wall rubber plug)

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then entering to the front trunk (passenger side rubber plug)

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tucked in nicely , carpet covering needs to go back on

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even though all of my speakers were replaced , 8- factory speaker cables were spliced here

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#2 AWG power cables were terminated + permanent wiring for my battery maintainer

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final termination, don't ever go for those cheap rca's / cables. they will make a substatial amount of difference.

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Edited by juniinc
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Thanks honda ! Yes everything was fabricated & done by me.

Door speakers are fairly easy, I'm passionate about working on my ride so it is actually fun process for me usually :) .

The hardest part has to be the removing your door panel , there is a manual posted by me or others. There r many mid speakers/component sets out there.

Wanting a true component set, my choice was Clif design Competition 5-1/4 component system- this way I didn't have to modify my speaker baffle + didn't have to build an extra tweeter pod(built in tweeter)

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Then ugly 4" Alpine was replaced with a pair of Infinity 3.5"

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I still needed something more for my rear stage sound.

Clif Design competition series 1" titanium tweeter was installed the rear door pocket, yes my door still slides

passive crossover was used , of course whats the point having all these nice speakers if u r not feeding right frequencies to em!

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7" motorized touch screen,DVD, MP4, DIVX,SD/USB SLOT was mounted then I got a bundle of cables to deal with!

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Wow I wish some of you guys can be here actually to listen

She sounds INCREDIBLE

nice work! Did you go the work yourself? You mentioned that you changed the speakers in the cabin as well, were the door speakers a pain to install given the door side airbags? thanks
Edited by juniinc
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