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post #1 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 02:37 AM Thread Starter
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Installed new speakers now it sound like crap!

I recently had a Kenwood DMX-7705S installed with the various components that make things work (steering wheel controls etc). All was well and sounded rather good. Then I got the bright idea to replace the speakers in the door and behind the seats. I used the Kenwood KFC-1666S speakers for the door and Sound Ordinance P-35B for the rears. On both I used the Metra 72-4568 wiring adapters. All speakers and adapters purchased from Crutchfield and head unit
and installation from Best Buy. When I replaced the speakers in my Cherokee and used the Metra adapters it was rather well discussed that the pins needed to be reversed in the Metra adapters for proper connections(why I don't know). SO I was curious if anybody had to do the same. OR if not having the proper pos/neg wiring at the speakers would be that detrimental to the sound.

I now have little to no bass from the Monsoon system. The woofer still thumps but the other speakers sound like crap, all mids and highs. I have tried the equalizer in the HU but it just doesn't sound right. The installer blames the speakers (since he didn't install them)

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post #2 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 06:24 AM
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If it sounded good with the old speakers but bad with the new, the most logical source of the problem is either the speakers or their installation.

The Metra adapters are just wiring harnesses, so are not going to affect the bass unless something really bad is wrong and causing a near loss of signal. So unless the connections are barely made or the terminals are corroded they are not likely the problem. Switching the polarity will put the sound out of phase and could easily result in poor bass response. If left and right are phased differently you will also get odd sound imaging with a number of characteristics. It would be worth it to make sure you have both sides the same, just in case.

The first and probably easiest thing to do is to reverse the speaker wires. I would do the doors first and then the rears, since the doors seem to have the better bass response. Definitely don't do all four at the same time since that could confuse the results. If the sound gets better after the doors are switched do the rears and see what that change is since it is possible that one set is correct.

The new door speakers appear to have a higher impedance than the originals, and that will reduce the overall sound level, but should not reduce the sound quality. I have even been told that it will improve clarity, but haven't noticed that myself. My ear probably just isn't good enough.
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post #3 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 08:30 AM
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every time Iíve changed speakers and head unit in a car, I always added an amp. Iím not familiar with the exact model you installed, but many aftermarket head units really donít have much power output. Thatís why itís a good idea to add an amp. Many are quite affordable, compact and pack a lot of punch and quality aftermarket speakers function better & sound better with the addition of an external amp.
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post #4 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 10:29 AM
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The Monsoon system has an amp.

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post #5 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 12:34 PM
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Switching the polarity will put the sound out of phase and could easily result in poor bass response. If left and right are phased differently you will also get odd sound imaging with a number of characteristics. It would be worth it to make sure you have both sides the same, just in case.

The first and probably easiest thing to do is to reverse the speaker wires. I would do the doors first and then the rears, since the doors seem to have the better bass response. Definitely don't do all four at the same time since that could confuse the results. If the sound gets better after the doors are switched do the rears and see what that change is since it is possible that one set is correct.
I agree; the description of what he is hearing after adding the new speakers sounds like there is a polarity / out of phase issue.
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post #6 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-02-2019, 03:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all of the replies. I plan on swapping the pins in the connector like I did on the Jeep because the speaker's ends are big guy/little guy and can't be swapped.

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post #7 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
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I finally got around to taking the door panel off and according to this diagram the dark green wire on the passenger side is for ground. That's the way it was wired using the adapter.

Now for the (I think) embarrassing part. There are so many fine tuning options (speaker size, location, cross-over points, cabin size...etc) that I had not played with. I sat and made the coarse adjustments and some fine tuning for preference (EQ, bass boost...yadda yadda) that I have it sounding very decent for now. It's funny how different sources (Android Auto, bluetooth, radio, USB) have different characteristics but I think I am on my way.

Thanks again for the help.

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post #8 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 02:44 PM
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It's also worth considering that different speakers have different resistance levels and whatnot (sorry, I don't have any more technical words... maybe TS or other electrical gurus can chime in)Ö

Short version: Stock speakers are matched to the power output of the factory system. Just popping in higher wattage speakers doesn't mean you can crank the system up to full volume and get "better" sound. You might get "louder" sound but if the head unit starts distorting as it's pushing its maximum power... you end up with ****ty sound.

Attempt with numbers: Say your stock radio is rated for 50W and can go as high as 40-45W before distorting. That's mated up to 60W speakers (if yer lucky) just to cover the max power and prevent owners all over from blowing out speakers. With that setup, it starts to sound like crap at volume 18-20 (our of 20) so people mistakenly pop in 150W speakers assuming the speakers are the limiting factor. The factory unit is maxed while the speakers aren't even close to being in their sweet spot.

But... from reading your last post, I dunno that this is the cause for your disliking the sound.

The internet says your head unit is Max power output: 50 watts max. The door speakers say: Nominal Output Power 30 Watt, Max (RMS) Output Power 300 Watt. And the rears... Minimum RMS Wattage 2 Maximum RMS Wattage 25 Peak Power Handling (Watts) 50.

I think you have two issues here:
1. The door speakers are not getting enough power to have the punch you want.
2. The rears are under rated and when you crank it up to push the doors you're exceeding their sweet spot.

--

However... I am NOT a pro by any means! Likely, neither are most of the jackasses at Best Buy or Car Pros If you want truly amazing sound look on Yelp for a smaller pro sound shop. They'll cost more, but sometimes you get what you pay for xD

I hope some of the more experienced/knowledgeable folks can correct me if I'm wayyy off base.
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post #9 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 02:49 PM
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The Monsoon system has an amp.
Not familiar with his adapter kit, but some of those bypass factory wiring entirely. He did say the speakers were moving though, lol.

I had that problem with my son's 99 expy when I went to add an aftermarket system. Installing the harness cut out the factory system's amp. Was seriously annoying to deal with. Especially considering my father-in-law (the primary driver at the time) had like 60-70% hearing loss. I just restored it to stock.

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post #10 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 03:11 PM Thread Starter
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I think you have two issues here:
1. The door speakers are not getting enough power to have the punch you want.
2. The rears are under rated and when you crank it up to push the doors you're exceeding their sweet spot.
I think changing the speaker configuration at the head unit helped a whole bunch. They were set on 8" for the doors. I changed them to 5 1/4" and the sound improved. I also set the rear speakers to (I think) 3" from the selections available and they also changed for the better. I just think I need to fine tune a few more parameters on the head unit to match my speaker selection and personal preference. I already have dramatically more bass coming from the door speakers now.

It could also be that I am spoiled from the 9 speaker 500 watt stereo in my Grand Cherokee..haha

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post #11 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 04:10 PM
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Glad you are on track to sort this out.

Actually, looking at the speaker ratings, the door speakers are giving you four times the sound level as the rears at the same power, so you may be over-driving them.
The Kenwoods are rated at 90 dB, but the SOs are only 84 dB, so it will take four times as much power to get the same volume out of them.

And yes, less than half the power and an open cockpit will combine to give you a lot less sound at well as lower sound quality.
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post #12 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 04:26 PM
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Glad you are on track to sort this out.

Actually, looking at the speaker ratings, the door speakers are giving you four times the sound level as the rears at the same power, so you may be over-driving them.
The Kenwoods are rated at 90 dB, but the SOs are only 84 dB, so it will take four times as much power to get the same volume out of them.

And yes, less than half the power and an open cockpit will combine to give you a lot less sound at well as lower sound quality.
See? This is why I hoped more knowledgeable people would chime in.

Curious though... Can he even push 4x the power into the rears when they are max RMS 25W (compared to the doors max RMS 300W)?

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post #13 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 04:59 PM
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See? This is why I hoped more knowledgeable people would chime in.

Curious though... Can he even push 4x the power into the rears when they are max RMS 25W (compared to the doors max RMS 300W)?
Dangerously more knowledgeable, maybe, because I'm not sure I am interpreting things correctly. Sometimes I look at them backwards.

The amp is rated at 50W max for 4 channels, but 22W per channel at full bandwidth, which matches well with the SO rears.
The Kenwood fronts are rated at 300W peak, but 30W RMS, so you can overdrive them with the 50W amp, which should be rated RMS.

The issue arises if you have balance and fade set to neutral, the fronts are going to be 4x as loud due to their better sensitivity (90dB vs 84).
Fading to the rear would balance the sound and drastically reduce the power to the fronts, so maybe over-driving isn't a concern.

The key seems to be setting the amp parameters to match the actual speakers, and then not turning the volume up "Too high".
My experience has been that you are more likely to get distortion when the amp is underpowered for the speakers rather than the other way.
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post #14 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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Fading to the rear would balance the sound and drastically reduce the power to the fronts, so maybe over-driving isn't a concern.
My next step when I go get my RKSport spoiler installed at the body shop this Friday. For now it's back under the cover and the carport.



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The key seems to be setting the amp parameters to match the actual speakers, and then not turning the volume up "Too high".
Those days are over for this ol' man!

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post #15 of 15 (permalink) Old 07-17-2019, 05:12 PM
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........Those days are over for this ol' man!
While it is true that "If its too loud you are too old", it is also true that old ears may not realize how loud it is!
Years of race engines, guns, and rock music make things sound different than they probably should.
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