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What to look for when buying aftermarket speakers??


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19 replies to this topic

#1 of 20 OFFLINE   Shawn.G

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Posted November 23 2003 - 05:20 AM

I am purchasing an Alpine 9811 and want some new speakers to go with it. I am looking to spend about 70, for that was about the average price on Crutchfield. I've researched and bought home theater speakers, but I don't know where to start with the car speakers. So what specs should I look for when looking for new speakers. Also, what are some brands to really aim for/watch out for?? Thanks.

#2 of 20 OFFLINE   Sean^M

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Posted November 24 2003 - 04:52 AM

good speakers in that price range.. look at CDT.
if you're willing to spend more, look at Infinity Kappa, MB Quart, Polk Audio.
stick with companies known for component speakers. This means avoid companies who specialize in other things, like head units, then use that recognition to sell lesser products of other kinds.
I'd avoid pioneer, alpine, kenwood, etc for speakers myself.
they might make good head units but they aren't the best speakers around.
www.thezeb.com has good deals on CDT speakers if you want to browse those.

#3 of 20 OFFLINE   JimmyJK

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Posted November 27 2003 - 11:55 AM

CDTs at 70? are u kidding? the CHEAPEST you can find them is that blowout at teh thezeb where the run 150 at half price, CDTs are on par with HIGH end MBQs they spank the snot out of infinity kappa line, thats just not even funny. your best bet right now is DEI 7 inch components on sale from about 500 to 150 at sounddomain, or the CDTs at thezeb for 150. MBQs tend to be too bright and over rated but are good speakers.

#4 of 20 OFFLINE   JimmyJK

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Posted November 27 2003 - 11:56 AM

by the way the 70 dolalr speakers at crutchfiled are for lack of a better word a$$ compared to those DEIs and CDTs.

#5 of 20 OFFLINE   Sean^M

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Posted November 28 2003 - 05:49 AM

Depends on which CDT line you're considering. Classic, Cambria, etc.. I was suggesting the cheaper ones, not the high end models. I don't feel even CDT's top of the line will "spank" the Kappa Perfect components, but it's subjective anyway. Personally, I'll stick with the DynAudio System 360, on a Sinfoni Amplitude 120.4x bridged.

#6 of 20 OFFLINE   Matt Odegard

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Posted November 28 2003 - 09:38 AM

[quote] Personally, I'll stick with the DynAudio System 360, on a Sinfoni Amplitude 120.4x bridged. [quote]

He was asking about $75 speakers. I think those are over his budget. Not remotely close to what he was asking about.

#7 of 20 OFFLINE   Sean^M

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Posted November 28 2003 - 06:48 PM

my response was to Jimmy's post. you get what you pay for, plain and simple. That's a hard and fast rule in car audio, and rarely if ever, have I seen this not hold true.

#8 of 20 OFFLINE   Dave Bennett

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Posted November 29 2003 - 02:26 AM

Sean may have a point about getting what you pay for but the other thing you have to remember is that what sounds like absolute crap to one person may sound OK to another. For example, I'm sure some of you guys would shred my system to pieces, but it sounds good to me and was within my budget. Everything is relative to the listener.
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#9 of 20 OFFLINE   Sean^M

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Posted November 29 2003 - 04:43 AM

very true. some people are happy with a factory AM radio, and one speaker in the dash (seriously) and some love their Pyramid/BOSS systems. the same holds true in home theater, too.. some folks like all in one solutions on a small TV, while others won't stop short of Martin Logan, Krell, and a projector. Anyway, CDT does offer an economy line of speakers, and I've yet to hear anyone complain about their performance for the price. Worth a look at least.

#10 of 20 OFFLINE   VinhT

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Posted November 30 2003 - 06:27 AM

When you are auditioning car audio speakers, be sure to check for sibilance. If it is noticeably bad on the board, it will be far worse in the car.
Vinh Tran

#11 of 20 OFFLINE   Jeran Kuenzie

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Posted December 04 2003 - 04:56 AM

Buy whatever you like the sound of best. I personally love my Focal 165k2's. I have had MB Quart in the past, and they tend to be a little bright and the ones I had had no midbass at all. I also had some Polk EX's back in the day that were descent considering they were components for like $100. Look on eBay. You can always find good deals on there. I've heard some Boston Acoustics that sounded very nice as well.

#12 of 20 OFFLINE   Sean^M

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Posted December 05 2003 - 06:22 AM

Focal is good. so is DynAudio if you want something with a very smooth tweeter that isn't too bright. some people find it too "quiet" but it's extremely flat, which is what leads to this. People are used to bright treble in cars I guess.. comes from that "loudness button" curve I suppose. anyway if you audition car speakers, try to do it in a car and not on a showroom board. a showroom makes them sound completely different, and usually pretty lousy regardless of how good they really are.

#13 of 20 OFFLINE   chris_clem

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Posted December 09 2003 - 08:29 AM

[quote] I've heard some Boston Acoustics that sounded very nice as well. [quote]

I seecond this. They have great products all across their range. I'm not sure how much their Rally series sells for nowadays but is that's within your budget you should really give them a listen.


Whatever your final choice, make sure you end up with component speakers not some all in one 16x9's...Posted Image

#14 of 20 OFFLINE   Jonty Rees

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Posted December 09 2003 - 10:36 AM

This thread could qualify as the least helpful I have ever seen. The price will vary depending on the size you need, but in general, you probably can't go wrong with Infinity Reference speakers, which should come in under your $75 limit if you search around on the web, (try thezeb, carmedia1, etc). Sounds like you're powering them with the head unit, (no external amp), so I wouldn't get anything with a sensitivity rating of less than 90dB, higher is better for you. There should be some similarly priced Polk speakers that would be fine also, or you might even try the ever-popular Pioneers. The specs will probably look very similar for most speakers in the same price range, and are not really that reliable anyway - just go by brand - Infinity, Polk, Pioneer. You won't find decent separates, (separate woofer and tweeter), at that price, so don't even bother looking. GOod luck - hope it works out.

#15 of 20 OFFLINE   Shawn.G

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Posted December 27 2003 - 03:38 PM

I am not looking to buy components by the way, for I am powering the speakers with my newly-installed Alpine 9811. None of the Infinity speakers will fit, nor the Polks. I have Polk speakers at home and love them, so I will continue searching. But I am looking at Kenwoods and Pioneers right now. I am sorta worried about buying speakers of those brands. How about Kicker, JBL, JL, or Fosgate speakers (brands that specialize in speakers)? My shop loves Kicker speakers, anyone recommend those over CDT? Also, I want the speakers to have really good midbass, sounds like the CDTs don't get really low. I want them to get down around 40.

#16 of 20 OFFLINE   ChrisAG

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Posted December 28 2003 - 02:38 PM

I have JBL Power Series 2-ways with my Alpine 9811, sounds great to me.

#17 of 20 OFFLINE   Shawn.G

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Posted December 28 2003 - 02:58 PM

Do you get good midbass w/ those JBLs? I am getting subs so I do not need the speakers to go really low. Just need good midbass.

#18 of 20 OFFLINE   ChrisAG

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Posted December 29 2003 - 06:32 AM

Yep, they're 5x7" decent mid bass.

#19 of 20 OFFLINE   PrinzII

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Posted January 01 2004 - 03:34 AM

Maybe I can shed a little light on this situation. One poster said that companies who make head units do not make good speakers. If that were the case, many car stereo fanatics would not be sporting Alpine R Series or Eclipse Ti Series Subs to name two. Both brands actually make some good speakers but the the best feedback comes from your ears and your brain. Since you have done research on home theater speakers, you can use some of that school of thought when shopping for car speakers. Go out and listen to a good reference pair of speakers like MB Quart, JL Audio, a/d/s, Rainbow Audio, CDT, Diamond, Dynaudio, Focal to get an idea of the sound you are looking for and to see if the speakers you are interested in can take what you dish out musically. Now, with that said, let me interject a brand that has not been entertained in this thread but is quite excellent. Boston Acoustics. You can get a decent pair of Boston Acoustics for the price. As others have suggested, DEI, Infiniti, JBL make good speakers for the price as well.
Building mine one piece at a time.

#20 of 20 OFFLINE   PrinzII

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Posted January 01 2004 - 03:38 AM

Shawn: Kicker makes a good speaker as well. As far as JL Audio is concerned, you would definitely have to go with their lower end (TR series) to match your price point. But, to reiterate what I said earlier, check out Boston Acoustics.
Building mine one piece at a time.




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