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RobertISaar

Cheapish 5.25 recommendations

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so, the 5.25 4-way sony units I put in the MC in 2008ish were immediately crap, enough so that I sent the majority of the volume to the rear 6X9s just so I wouldn't have to listen to the front speakers lose all of their shit whenever something sub-150Hz came their way. the factory 5.25 were actually noticeably louder than what those were, along with not sounding like they were abused for years.

 

so, I'm looking at stuff in the $30-40 range and I'm lost. I'm not going to deal with trying to place components in this car, there isn't anywhere I could place a tweeter and not have it look so out of place and still be effective at directing sound. I kind of doubt that i'll want/need them to be amplified to have at least the same apparent volume as the rears while sitting up front, so i'll probably end up with an inline cap("bass blocker") as a high-pass filter with whatever I end up with.

 

so, $40 or less 5.25 composite speakers that aren't going to cause more aggravation than they're worth?

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Go to the junkyard and look for speaekers. I did this for a Jeep I drive every now and then with only $30 and that's including the fee to get in. I managed to get some Infinity Kappas at the yard. All you need is patience and a couple tries. Also check stuff that usually gets modded, those more often than not get speakers.

 

If that's not your cup of tea, just go on ebay and look for some JVC speakers or Kenwoods.

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in 97 or so, the rear 6X9s were swapped from factory units to some 2-way Kenwood 6X9s, they were decent at the very least and were just starting to sound tired when I replaced them in 2008. they didn't spend a whole lot of time being pushed by an amp, but at least a year or two at the end of their 11-year run.

 

I don't know if I've ever touched/heard anything from JVC.

 

local yard options would likely be slim, especially for the size... there are a hundred w-bodies to choose from, but cars that had mid 30s/40s for a MSRP aren't easy to come across. would I be looking for anything in particular?

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in 97 or so, the rear 6X9s were swapped from factory units to some 2-way Kenwood 6X9s, they were decent at the very least and were just starting to sound tired when I replaced them in 2008. they didn't spend a whole lot of time being pushed by an amp, but at least a year or two at the end of their 11-year run.

 

 

I don't know if I've ever touched/heard anything from JVC.

 

JVC owns Kenwood now. Has owned it for almost 10 years I think. Honestly, Kenwood speakers aren't horrible, but I'm personally an Alpine fan. I have Type R's in my Cutlass door and do a good job of keeping me company despite the fact that it's only them 2 and a junkyard find Type S 4 inchers in the dash.

 

I did put Kenwoods in my Jeep for the fronts. They tend to have more bass line than the Infinitys I put in the back doors. I also used to run JVC's in my Cutlass before it got gutted, which then found its way into my Camaro before I gave em to a family member and put em in a Cavalier. In all 3 cars, the JVC's haven't disappointed. I recommend them for cheap builds but if you're amping I definitely recommend Alpine. Pioneers are trash, Sonys are trash and Kicker has disappointed me with their speakers but not their subwoofers. I may give their KS series a try, but I had CS 4" speakers in my Cutty originally and they kept

 

local yard options would likely be slim, especially for the size... there are a hundred w-bodies to choose from, but cars that had mid 30s/40s for a MSRP aren't easy to come across. would I be looking for anything in particular?

 

If I was you, I'd go up to 6.5's in the door. My Cutty was supposed to fit either 4x6 or 5 1/4s in the door (I know 95 fit 5 1/4s for sure) but I stuffed a 6.5 Alpine in there. IF making an adapter is your issue, a dremel and a 90-95 Civic will be your friend. How do I know? I did this for the Jeep. The speaker size was 6.75 which made for a tricky situation with the 6.5s. I had gotten the Kenwoods out of a 93 Civic and I took the speaker mount with me when I pulled it. I just used self tapping screws and put em on the door, perfect fit, now I had some decent sound in a car I drive every now and then. The dremel really comes in if the speaker is too big and wont sit flush with the speaker mount that comes in the Civic. You'll only find em in the front doors, the rear deck was set up differently.

 

All you really need to look for is a car that would be modified, you know whatever the local rice boys drive. My local rice boys drive imports, so whatever Honda, Acura or Volkswagen that shows up in the yards usually have speakers in em... if the other rice boys haven't gotten to em yet. I know you could get some 6.5s out of a 2000-2005 Impala/MC. Also, a missing radio will be a good hint as to whether or not it had speakers.

 

Another easy score are the 2nd gen LH cars. All you need is a flathead to pop off the grille and you'll see if it has speakers or not. 1st gen cloud cars were the same as well. 2nd gens work too but I don't usually find speakers in em.

 

On the back of the speaker it will usually have the model and if you're lucky the RMS. If they dont have RMS, I'd search em on the phone. But that's just me. I like to have "come ups" at the junkyard. I've actually acquired 2 top end Alpine decks from the yard and one that's in my Cutlass now.

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my HU has a setting for volume and frequency x-over for the front or rear channels. if I ever get that bass coming through at loud levels that is my first line of defense. I have a real cheap JVC deck and it still has those built in. actually it is just as loaded in the menu settings as a high end HU, with all the outputs of what years ago would have been a $600-$1200 range HU besides it does not have a disc player of any kind. its competition ready for like $150.

 

basically all the speaker fart gets cut out with the settings. even with a component crossover I still use those settings so I don't blow the mids like I did with my JL 3-ways one time. I had a 6.5 break a lead but luckily I was able to warranty it out. the bass still comes through even with it having a component set-up, you are supposed to cut off the bass with either amp settings, or on the deck. Problem with using the deck is pre-amp gets reset to default every time the battery gets disconnected usually, while your amp is manually dialed in.

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the current head unit in the MC is a Panasonic CD w/aux input, detachable face and 2 sets of RCA outputs(model CQ-DP630EUC) from march of 1995..... it was actually a really nice headunit back in the day. the display on it has been slowly fading away for the past ~10 years(the LCD appears to have suffered from too much UV exposure when the polarizers failed) and I haven't been able to come up with a solution to fix/replace it since parts for it are non-existent. sucks, considering it still played CDs, even CD-Rs. I have all of the menu functions memorized, but it may be time to replace it entirely. by now, I assume even $50 SD/USB/aux only decks can produce equivalent if not more accurate sound at reasonable power levels.

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i uh...... found some more than reasonably priced 4 way 5.25 units, I've been messing with them for a few hours tonight, not sitting in any type of enclosure(or the door), they sound better than what their cost implied. I've been trying(well, within reason) to get them to distort at low frequencies, but it just isn't happening. I'm playing as many tracks as I have on my laptop that should stress it, but it just isn't happening. low end response is about what I would expect out of a 5.25 composite, but it doesn't sound flabby like I expect it to.

 

am I not pushing it hard enough? does it need to be in an enclosure?

 

spec'd for operation down to 85Hz, which I'm inclined to believe, I've run a few tracks through Audacity and applied a high-pass filter to them, they start sounding different around the 85Hz range. pure sine waves act the same.

 

I've got a couple other speakers here for reference to use as sanity checks, the worn to hell stocker acts tired, a nice(repurposed) Aiwa 3-way component setup(in a ported enclosure) I have with a 6.25 woofer goes noticeably lower and shows no sign of stress, so my head unit is certainly producing the tones that I expect to cause the 5.25s to show their weakness.

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You said the HU is old? Does it have more than just bass/treble settings? I always look for 3-7 band EQ with selectable anchor frequencies -- that way you have a little more control over which bands you're fooling with. My guess is it's got some sort of loudness control that is set or just simple bass boost.

 

Go on Craigslist and pick up a Pioneer deck from around 2005-7 in the higher-end range, something with the faceplate with the dolphin animations. You should be able to find one fairly cheap and it will have a ton of shit you can play with -- I liked those because you could send all the bass to the rear deck and basically run them as subwoofers, and control the EQ more granularly.

 

Personally, I gave up trying to make bass work on small speakers -- I run a 12" subwoofer and I will never go back. It doesn't need to be loud and obnoxious, but I like to feel the bass. I'd wager even a little bass tube would help your situation.

 

But, I added the sub partially because I run a 5.1 surround head unit -- the discrete channel arrangement requires a sub to reproduce the mix accurately. But it helped the bass so much I'd never go back.

Edited by GP1138

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I was testing it with a new(2012 production date) headunit last night over it's aux port, using my laptop as a source. I could mess with the equalizer there if need be, but operation like that would be the exception rather than the norm.

 

http://customradio.net/us_en/products-page/truck/css-5920e-amfmcd-wweather-band-duplicate/

http://www.bigrigstereo.com/details_5920e.html

 

^ that one links to the wrong owner's manual, but it does have a little more info than the manufacturer's page. I didn't think I would have to go looking at radios meant for semis to find a modern(ish) non-gaudy headunit, but I'm quite happy with it(and after swapping the TDA7388 amp out for a TDA7560, I think I can pull my 200 watt depth charge out from under the seat and drive everything from the headunit).

 

at the moment, I'm just trying to figure out where these 5.25s need to have their low-end cut off at, I'm seeing recommendations for the 300-400Hz range for 5.25 woofers, that seems a bit high considering how they're operating sitting in the open air.

 

my 6X9s are rated down to 40Hz(with 75w RMS ratings) and I was powering them off of the 200 watt amp without using the high-pass filter on the amp, they still sound like they're new, so I'm assuming I didn't manage to damage them over the couple years of amplified operation, I kind of doubt that I ever pushed beyond 30 or 40 watts to them. last night, 15 watts from one 5.25 had me scrambling for earmuffs while I was measuring the point where the amp chip runs into 1% THD.

 

I'm trying to find a reasonable place to put 4 more 4 ohm speakers/woofers, that way I can run the new amp chip down to 2 ohms on all 4 channels, where its specs improve quite a bit.

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okay, standalone amp can definitely be removed... driving 6 4-ohm component speakers(a pair of 4-ways and 4 3-ways), things are uncomfortably loud from 6 feet away and the speakers firing 90* away from me(somewhat simulating rear deck and door panel placement). pointed towards me it gets really uncomfortable at high range. it's too bad I didn't have a 4th pair of suitable speakers lying around to get down to 2 ohms on every channel, but there was little to no change in the amount of heat the radio generated operating at 4 ohms x 4 and 4 ohms x 2 + 2 ohms x 2.... barely warmer than ambient temp near the 1% THD limit I'm targeting(with the power supply I was using, ~17 watts on a 4 ohm channel and ~30 on the 2 ohm).

 

I think I was only around 10 watts or less on the two channels that had one speaker and 20 or less with the channels that had dual speakers before things were getting. any more and I was afraid I was going to risk damage to the 5.25s at low frequency, the cones were getting quite a bit of movement. I'll need to get around to some bass blockers when I install them in-car. the 3-way 6x9s showed their lower limits as well, so I'm going to have to look into some larger 4 ohm woofers intended for free-air operation. I might have a place worked out to install a pair in the deck that won't interfere with trunk space or risk getting knocked around.

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Id skip 5.25" and go straight to 6.5" as they arent hard to adapt and still fit behind the door panel. Pricewise id go with walmart pioneer or kicker 6.5"s. Could aleays go the 6x9 door speaker route like i did ;)

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I've got my door 5.25s sorted out and deck 6x9s sorted out, now it's down to finding places to place/hide 4 other speakers.

 

there is plenty of high-frequency in both front and rear, so I'm thinking 6.5 woofers somewhere up front(though not entirely certain where I could hide them under the dash) and probably 8 or 10 4 ohm subwoofers either in the deck or somewhere right off to the sides of the folding seatbacks.

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side of the console wouldn't be very hidden... I could probably accept it though, if I were to do a bucket/console swap. I would have to come across one hell of a deal for a full leather interior in decent shape for me to consider it though..... I'm not going to hold my breath.

 

underseat would work for the driver's side, it's where my amp was, but passenger side has the airbag module under it... I don't remember how clearance looks in that area with the module in. seems like it wouldn't have nearly the resonance issue that the side of the console would present as well. the kick panels seem like they would have the same issue, though the bracing behind them might allow for some simple/effective mounting.

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i'll have to take a look and maybe set the passenger seat in there to check clearance, but there's a directional intertia switch on the inside on the airbag module... that switch likely has a steel spring and contact in it, which I don't want to put any kind of magnetic field near and either cause it to become less sensitive or more sensitive than it is already.... my watch starts to act oddly within about a foot of the speakers I have now, I don't think there is going to be that much space under the seat to keep the magnet away from that module.

 

my seats aren't in great shape IMO(cushioning is getting pretty weak)... if I'm going to swap anything around, I would be changing most/all of it at the same time, preferably into a set of leather.

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