Base model stereo upgrade - Ford Mustang Forum
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post #1 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012 Thread Starter
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Base model stereo upgrade

I know this has been covered for the most part and after searching I havent really come up with a concrete answer.

I am going to buy a 3 channel amp to power my front components and 1 sub. I figure a line out converter is most likely needed but not completely sure on how many channels I need or which one to get.

Im really thinking about the arc audio XDi 803 WoofersEtc.com - XDi 803 - Arc Audio 3-Channel Car Amplifier

thanks for any help!


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post #2 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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Quote:
Originally Posted by midnite8511 View Post
I know this has been covered for the most part and after searching I havent really come up with a concrete answer.

I am going to buy a 3 channel amp to power my front components and 1 sub. I figure a line out converter is most likely needed but not completely sure on how many channels I need or which one to get.

Im really thinking about the arc audio XDi 803 WoofersEtc.com - XDi 803 - Arc Audio 3-Channel Car Amplifier

thanks for any help!
There are a couple things to think about. Your stock head unit has automatic eq settings so when you turn it up loud it boost highs and cut lows to keep you from blowing stick speakers. So you can leave it alone if your fine with that or get a new head unit or an active processor. I'm going to get the JBL MS-8 when I finish my audio upgrades. It will provide any outputs you may want (speakers and sub) so you don't have to use a converter all while actively flattening your eq so you don't get the crappy spikes and dips that your stock head unit gives you.

Second I would recommend getting 2 amps. One for your component speakers and a mono amp for your sub. Depending on how much you want to spend will determine your sound quality.

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post #3 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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I would love to upgrade my base stereo also, but I am unwilling to add an amp to the stock head unit. It has a signal that is made for full-range speakers and I don't think it will provide the kind of sound quality I am looking for. You may want to consider upgrading your head unit first if you want a high-quality sound. The reason I haven't done this is because the dash kits available right now are not appealing to me.

I haven't heard of that brand of amplifier (XDI) but the power ratings look good enough to run a decent system...depending on what kind of sub you are looking at. Personally, I think you should pick out the speakers you want first and then pick an amp that matches well.
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post #4 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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Originally Posted by bcbunn View Post
I would love to upgrade my base stereo also, but I am unwilling to add an amp to the stock head unit. It has a signal that is made for full-range speakers and I don't think it will provide the kind of sound quality I am looking for. You may want to consider upgrading your head unit first if you want a high-quality sound. The reason I haven't done this is because the dash kits available right now are not appealing to me.

I haven't heard of that brand of amplifier (XDI) but the power ratings look good enough to run a decent system...depending on what kind of sub you are looking at. Personally, I think you should pick out the speakers you want first and then pick an amp that matches well.
Hey check out processors either Bit One or jbl MS-8.
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post #5 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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Just upgraded my speakers to some decent Focals. I'd like to add a woofer as well, but was wondering how much of a difference adding an AMP to those speakers would bring?

It's more of a cost thing. Can't really afford (er, justify) doing it all at once, so I was wondering what you guys would think would be the best step to take next.

Never really worked with car audio before so I'm learning as I go.

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post #6 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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Getting even a half decent amp will make a huge difference. Being an audio guy I can tell you though, your audio is as weak as your weakest link in the chain. Changing the speakers is a must for anyone who listens to music in their car haha. Second I would either change the head unit or get a processor. Then after that amp everything.
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post #7 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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My long range plan was to replace parts slowly until I was happy with it. I changed all 4 speakers and then added a powered sub. I recently canceled my xm satellite and bought a subscription to Pandora which gives me a higher bitrate than xm and free Pandora.

I have not heard a better sounding stereo with these changes and it is as loud as I want it. I don't think the stock head unit is the weakest link.

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post #8 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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Weakest parts,

1. Speakers
2. Head unit.
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post #9 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-16-2012
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speakers > AMP > Head Unit

In that order.. of importance.. Speakers or investing in good set up speakers will make the biggest difference.

IF me I be looking force this in place..
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_091165V...30.html?tp=106
but getting on ebay for cheaper..
http://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Focal-Po...ht_5122wt_1144

One these two Cadence Amps 5 channel power all front/rear and Sub
http://www.woofersetc.com/c-29-multi...facturerid=121
(one build quality better then other.. I went with cheaper)

Or get MB Quart and just power front and bridge rear for subwoofer
MB Quart ONX4.125 - 1000W RMS ONYX 4-Channel Car Amplifier/Amp
(i put this one in my brother GF car, works very well, 2 channel front and bridged rear)

Had both amps.. both pretty good unless you want to wake neighbors then by all means get a Mono block and small 2 or 4 channel from Amp for front.

MS-8 is best but they are expense. Otherwise just line converters. MS-8 resolves the bass getting cut.

Again eBay direct from JBL w.warranty
http://www.ebay.com/itm/JBL-MS-8-Mob...#ht_3509wt_910

$400 MS-8
$270 Focal Front speakers
$200 for AMP (need wiring kit)
$50 FatMat
+ subwoofer you be on your own
--------------------------------------
1k+ for a pretty decent system

Removing the stock deck seems be a pain and OEM deck isn't worst deck.. and cost of a good deck is expense.. maybe have no sync then worth it

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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisfromalbany View Post
speakers > AMP > Head Unit

In that order.. of importance..
Agreed..

15 charac.....

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I agree with the amp coming second when having the premium head unit. I had one in my fusion and just changing the speakers was enough and the head unit was solid. Being said they base head unit is beyond awful compared.
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I have the base GT and the stock stereo is beyond craptacular. All I have done so far is swap out the four speakers to aftermarket 6x8's. Sounds a bit better, but overall still in the crap category. Now I am at a crossroads as to what to do next?

Do I swap out the HU for something like a Kenwood KIV-BT901 digital media receiver and a Metra single DIN kit?

Or...

Do I stick with the stock (base model) HU and add a processor, 5 channel AMP, and sub?

I really don't want to spend the $$$ to do both, so which do you think would give me the better results?
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I kept my head unit & spent my money on a 5 channel amp, four Alpine speakers & a sub for the trunk. Sounds terrific.

IMO the Amp is the most important piece (& most expensive piece in my system), since it will determine the system power & speaker type.


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Here are the Focals that I got.

Focal Access 165CA1 6-3/4" 2-way car speakers at Crutchfield.com

Overall it has improved the quality a lot, but seams like it's still missing something.

Being a noob at car audio, am I correct in thinking of adding a 5-channel amp as my next step so that I would be able to ad a sub through that same amp in the future?

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post #15 of 36 (permalink) Old 04-17-2012 Thread Starter
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I should have mentioned that I already have a set of Morel components, my main questions is which way to run either a processor or a line out converter, I dont really want to replace the factory head unit. I can see the processors being better


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