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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I'm getting my tax return in a week or so. Around.. $1,200. I don't want to spend all of it, but I would really like to upgrade my sound system. Now being that I literally know nothing about car audio besides turning the thing on.. I figured I'd ask for help. I'd rather get some unbiased opinions on here before i walk into best buy and have some sales moron tell me what i should get. Right now I have the front 2 speakers replaced with Infinity Kappa 682.9cf 5"x7"/6"x8" 2-way speakers. That's it. They're hooked up to the factory head unit. I'm looking to get an amp and sub at least. Would i need to replace the rear speakers as well? If i got a new head unit, would I still be able to use the steering wheel controls and aux input on the center console? I've searched the forums, but haven't found anyone as car audio illiterate as I am haha. So it did not help much. How much should i expect to pay for a head unit, sub, amp.. and.. the installation all together? Suggetions on what types to get would appreciated too. Thanks in advance!
 

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just depends on what you wana spend.... my sub and amp costed me close to 1000$ not including wires and odds and ends...
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
[quote author=Carowen link=topic=134961.msg2903780#msg2903780 date=1233465162]
just depends on what you wana spend.... my sub and amp costed me close to 1000$ not including wires and odds and ends...
[/quote]

I'd be willing to spend $800-900... including the installation..
 

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more then likely with an aftermarket head unit you won't have steering wheel controls. You mentioned best buy. they have a display in the store with different amp and sub options setup. its your car and your ears go match up options and figure out what you like and how it well it sounds to you. If your getting an amp and sub and you like your stock radio then you don't need an aftermarket unit plus you lose your "HELLO" when you turn the car on :). get an amp to hook up to the door speakers and sub and that will enhance your sound.
 

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You should stay away from big box discount stores like Best Buy. There are smaller more specialized stores in almost every city that can do better installs and build you a better stereo.

If you are trying to keep the price under $900, you best keep the OEM head unit.

My first recommendation is as follows:


The second recommendation is to replace the Phoenix Gold components with Focal Access 6.5 A1 components, about $300. There are a few other choices that would work, but in order to keep the head unit without adding an amp you have to stick to speakers that have very good sensitivity / efficiency. The Focals are 92.5 db rated, the Phoenix golds had a 92-93 db efficiency.

Total = 130 + 35 + 140 + 40 + 130 + 40 = $515, which gives you room to budget $200 for installation. The Focal components would bump up that cost to about $700, which would put you at the upper limit of your budget.

In any case you don't need to replace the rears. You can either turn them off with the fader (which I recommend) or just use them at low volume.

There are considerably lower prices listed all over the web for the Phoenix Gold components, but none of these actually have any in stock.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
[quote author=geewhizbang link=topic=134961.msg2904027#msg2904027 date=1233475123]
You should stay away from big box discount stores like Best Buy. There are smaller more specialized stores in almost every city that can do better installs and build you a better stereo.

If you are trying to keep the price under $900, you best keep the OEM head unit.

My first recommendation is as follows:


The second recommendation is to replace the Phoenix Gold components with Focal Access 6.5 A1 components, about $300. There are a few other choices that would work, but in order to keep the head unit without adding an amp you have to stick to speakers that have very good sensitivity / efficiency. The Focals are 92.5 db rated, the Phoenix golds had a 92-93 db efficiency.

Total = 130 + 35 + 140 + 40 + 130 + 40 = $515, which gives you room to budget $200 for installation. The Focal components would bump up that cost to about $700, which would put you at the upper limit of your budget.

In any case you don't need to replace the rears. You can either turn them off with the fader (which I recommend) or just use them at low volume.

There are considerably lower prices listed all over the web for the Phoenix Gold components, but none of these actually have any in stock.




[/quote]

Thanks! I won't be re-replacing my front speakers since I basically just got them installed.. There actually is a local place near me I might try. I've just always put off checking it out since I don't know a thing about car audio... I'm thinking about getting the rear ones done too... not sure. How long would all this take to install? Thank's for all the suggestions by the way. I appreciate it.
 

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replacing the rear speakers isnt really worth it if you have a sub and tap the rears... it doesnt take too long if you do it yourself if you have a decent understanding of what to do
 

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If you have already replaced the fronts, chances are you need an amp because most components aren't efficient enough to run on the head unit by itself.

If you haven't had any damping mat installed, you have to open the doors anyway. The damping mat is VERY important. If I had the choice between a good $100 speaker with $35 worth of mat, and an even better $300 speaker without, the damping mat would have far more benefits than the more expensive speaker.

So if you have to open the doors anyway, you can either replace the speaker while the mat is being installed, or you can add a booster amp to the head unit to give you at least 40 watts RMS (not peak, or max) power to the front doors.
 
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