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New A3 Sportback- Audio Choice

a3_phil Jul 21, 2014

?

Which audio system?

  1. Audi Upgrade

    27 vote(s)
    51.9%
  2. B&O System

    25 vote(s)
    48.1%
  1. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    Okay, I'm now basically paralysed by indecision (first world problems) and can't decide whether to opt for the Audi Audio Upgrade or the B&O System. A few people seem to have flawless B&O systems, and some people have had significant issues. In fact, my first hand experience is that of a badly crackling B&O system on a test drive at the dealer.

    As you clearly can't beat the wisdom of strangers, I invite your opinions. My current thoughts are:

    Audi Audio Upgrade:
    + Should work as advertised out of the box
    + Saves me a few pounds
    + Should be sufficient for most of my Radio 4 listening and driving with passengers
    - Might lack a little punch for some music and when I'm driving alone
    - Lacks the wow factor of the speakers

    B&O System:
    + Clearly the best sound quality / volume available
    + Looks impressive too
    - Might have the dreaded crackle requiring multiple trips to the dealer to fix
    - Costs a little bit more

    As I'm leasing through the company the impact on cost is fairly negligible so it's really down to sound quality vs. potential crackle IMHO.

    So which one should it be?
     
  2. CL4RKY

    CL4RKY New Member

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    If money isn't an issue, it would be stupid not to go with B&O sound system IMO...

    It would be really unlucky for you to get the dreaded crackling noise, but I don't think you should let the slim chance of it happening to you be the only real reason to get the Audi Sound System option instead!
     
  3. BigD289

    BigD289 Member

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    B&O is brilliant, so far no crackle. If you like your music it is the way to go. I'm sure you won't regret it.
     
  4. REB154

    REB154 Member Team Sepang Audi S3 quattro DSG

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    I have gone for the B&O system having had it in my previous 2 A5s - and I listen to the radio more than anything else.
     
  5. 6audi6

    6audi6 Member

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    I have B&O. Its good. But £750 good? Not too sure (don't think its as good as the B&O system I had in an A4). That said I've had no crackling issues or glitches.

    I can't comment on the ASS having never heard it. Some say its similar to the BOSE in the 8P A3s. If that's the case go B&O as I wasn't overly impressed with the BOSE system in my 8P S3 (having come from B&O in an A4). Especially if money isn't a consideration.

    However don't base your decision (or part of your decision) on the B&O speaker lights. The novelty soon fades and I have mine set on the lowest light setting now. For me the big plus point with B&O is having the surround facility - I would check whether the ASS has this feature as it makes a big difference to my ageing ears!
     
  6. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    The speaker lights were never really more than a nice gimmick to be honest. I'm just looking for something that, when the occasion arises, can blow my socks off with anything from Holst to drum & bass via Radiohead.
     
  7. PDA3

    PDA3 Member

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    B&o is fantastic with quality audio files. Never heard a factory fitted stereo come anywhere close. Best option I chose!
     
  8. TheFiftheElement

    TheFiftheElement Well-Known Member

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    Just to add some balance, I've the Audi System and it's very good. Loud enough to make you feel embarrassed, as folk turn around to see who the idiot playing the Pixies at a level he really shouldn't be.

    If it was my money I'd go Audi and did, I couldn't justify the extra for the B&O. If it's not your cash and negligible then I'm not sure tbh. Take a chance and crackle?

    I guess all I'm saying is I would suspect the Audi system would be good enough for most folk.
     
    SilureMark and glospete like this.
  9. DescendDescend

    DescendDescend Member

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    Its been covered somewhere before but the Audi subwoofer has a D & M label which is related to Denon and Marantz - not a bad audio company. Whether the B & O system is going to £500 better is open for debate. Personally I spent it on other extras. The Audi upgrade sounds excellent.
     
  10. ajvS3

    ajvS3 New Member

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    ^+1
     
  11. snakehips

    snakehips Well-Known Member

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    As already said, if the extra expense is not much of a consideration, take B&O. I have never had the dreaded crackle and it is fantastic. The number 1 best option I specced. Don't miss out just because a few people have had issues.
    That said, if money is any kind of consideration, ASS is pretty good too and probably all you would need day to day.
     
  12. leosayer1

    leosayer1 Active Member

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    I've got the Audi Sound System and it can go very loud with tons of bass, it just lacks a bit of sparkle that you get from the best in car systems.

    It's not as good as the Bose system I had in my 2002 A6.

    For the price, it's very good but if you listen to lots of music then I think you'll be very happy if you get the best.
     
  13. SJC

    SJC Active Member

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    Get the job done. Go for b+o, as if you go audi and are not happy. Well tough!! As there is no going back.
     
  14. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    The poll's a bit tighter than I had expected but it's still leaning towards the B&O...

    I'm still waiting for the accountant to rubber-stamp the figures which means I'm still a few days away from pushing the button. Once he gets back to me I'll (finally) make a decision but it's looking more and more like the B&O. I'm also trying to persuade myself that by the time my car arrives (October-ish?) they'll have worked through any issues.
     
  15. Pickle1970

    Pickle1970 Active Member

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    we (i say we but obviously it's mine) pick our A3 sportback up in a month time and we went for the B&O system. I'm a little concerned about this crackle issue but it does seem to be when people stream through bluetooth and as i won't be doing this i'm not overly concerned. The Mrs wanted the sunroof and i wanted the sound system, it's only money and over the life of the car what's £500
     
  16. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    Well as I'm leasing it'll end up being less than £500 so it's not really the cost it's more about avoiding the hassle.

    However, I'll be playing all my music off either SD card or DAB so if it's more of a Bluetooth problem I'm a lot less worried.
     
  17. Pickle1970

    Pickle1970 Active Member

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    yeah i'll be listening through DAB and ipod so not really worried either. i just thought b*ll*x to it, it's only money :w00t:
     
  18. danilotto

    danilotto Active Member Audi S3

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    Despite being a professional musician and audiophile, I would say that I expected more from the B&O.

    I tested it deeply with SD, iPhone connected to AMI, and CD. I find the tweeters sometime harsh, the stereo image is not so good. The subwoofer has not a tight and damped bass.

    Nice stuff anyway. But for the same price you can do better aftermarket.
     
  19. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    I'm sure I (well, a professional installer) could do better aftermarket but this car needs to stay unmodified both from the point of view of the lease and my pocket.
     
  20. cilurnum

    cilurnum Active Member

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    Sorry, but the B and O is not £500 better than the Audi system. If you like your music upgrade to the Audi but there are other things to spend that on.
     
  21. arad85

    arad85 Active Member Team V6 Audi S5 Black Edition

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    I have a hi-fi system that cost me almost as much as my car over the years.

    I have Audi Sound System and am perfectly happy :)
     
    glospete likes this.
  22. arad85

    arad85 Active Member Team V6 Audi S5 Black Edition

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    PS. I listen to Planet Rock on DAB mostly. I did drop 16G of music onto an SD card some months ago, but I find it's great to allow someone else to choose 70's to 90's rock music.... I did find that from the SD card, the ASS lacked a bit of volume, but from radio, I have been perfectly happy (and this from someone who can annoy neighbours from a detached house ;))
     
  23. arad85

    arad85 Active Member Team V6 Audi S5 Black Edition

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    PPS. Or this :)
     
  24. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    To be honest, the rest of the car is optioned up as I want so it's not a question of spending the money on something else. I think I'm leaning towards the B&O...
     
  25. NickyF

    NickyF Active Member

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    Dare I ask what the standard stereo is like? I listen mostly to radio so didn't think I'd be missing out much, but I do listen to music sometimes and I don't want it to be rubbish. Anyone have any views?
     
  26. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    It's like listening to a cat being forced through a letterbox down a 1980s vintage mobile phone connection. It'll also give you cancer of the ears.

    (I actually have no idea)
     
  27. arad85

    arad85 Active Member Team V6 Audi S5 Black Edition

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    Personally, I thought it was not very good.

    If you listen to spoken word, you'd probably find it OK, but when I test drove a car with it in, I switched it off after 2 minutes as I found it annoying.
     
  28. driver_tim

    driver_tim Active Member Team Daytona Audi A3

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    Interesting comments. As regards the question posed by the OP I would personally go with the B&O, however I too feel it's a fraction on the harsh side at high volumes; interesting to note I'm not the only one.
     
  29. msdmjb

    msdmjb Active Member

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    Totally agree, I have the Audi system and it is superb. You are in a car after all so never the perfect listening environment, I have all of my music on the SD card and the clarity of the sound is really impressive.

    Spend the money on something else.

    Saying that some people get excited about illuminated cup holders :wacko:
     
  30. a3_phil

    a3_phil Active Member Audi A3

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    I maybe should have left price off the original list as it really isn't a concern. As I'm leasing the cost to me is much less than £500 so the decision is really 'better sound vs. chance of faults'.
     
  31. snakehips

    snakehips Well-Known Member

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    Maybe not £500 better but still better. So since the money isn't a concern, go for "better"!
     
  32. illingworth22

    illingworth22 Active Member TeamMisano Audi S3 Audi A3

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    +1 for B&O :)
     
  33. GeoffdeBruges

    GeoffdeBruges New Member

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    There's a chance of faults with every component on the car. Given, (a) money isn't an issue, (b) you risk having regrets if you don't, (c) you'll likely use the in car audio each time you drive, and (d) Audi will fix it under warranty if you are unlucky enough to have it go wrong during the likely lease lifetime then I would suggest go B&O.

    Personally I think it is a great option and it is the one I get most enjoyment from. Not a must have, but a very nice to have. No crackling on mine (yet!).
     
    snakehips likes this.
  34. SilureMark

    SilureMark Active Member

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    Spot on. Exactly why I went for the Audi system. I am more than happy with it; it's pretty much identical in sound quality to the BOSE system.
     
  35. illingworth22

    illingworth22 Active Member TeamMisano Audi S3 Audi A3

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    It's miles ahead of the Bose in my TTS!
     
    veeeight likes this.
  36. markwiggy

    markwiggy Third Gear

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    Go for the B&O , I penny pinched and went for the Audi sound system, big mistake. It's not a patch on the Bose I've had in previous Audi's.

    Mark
     
    illingworth22 likes this.

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