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Speaker Upgrade Advice - B5 A4

macca Jan 18, 2008

  1. macca

    macca Member

    Right, alpine headunit in, now time to sort speakers.

    I am after a money, more or less, no object solution to get the best sound i can possibly get from upgrading speakers, only thing is that i want everything to look stock so no custom builds.

    i am looking at the alpine x- series reference or pro components for front and possibly rear parcel shelf as it is a saloon without bose.


    a) will they fit (i've heard front doors have around 55mm depth allowance)
    b) are there better speakers that will fit
    c) what sort of amps should i be looking at powering 4 component speakers (i'm well out of touch when it comes to ICE)
    d) anyone recommend what sort of speaker cable to use.

    as for powering amps, i was going to run a 0 gauge cable to the boot and put a distribution block in there, obviously fused at the battery and again after the disto block. is this sufficient for amps?

    is rear parcel shelf strong enough to take the weight of a 4 channel amp? after my rear window blowing out a couple of days ago after the sealent went, i'm a bit nervous about the parcel shelf and adding loads of weight on it when the window is bonded to it. (probably me being stupid i know)

    for info i will be getting possibly a 12 inch boxed sub in the boot later, any recomendation?

    i listen to mainly dance music as this will be a consideration i guess.
  2. dualmono21

    dualmono21 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

    please give me your idea of what "money pretty much no object"

    i can advise you to fit speakers at £6500 a set but that doesnt mean they will sound like £6500 speakers
    to get any form of sound quality its about installation not about the actual gear itself

    you say you dont want to go to the trouble of pods but there are companies out there which will rebuild the doorcard for you substantially stonger and with more mounting depth to allow a wider choice of speakers to be used but still give a factory appearance
    now while this may seem like a lot of money for something you dont actually see but it may be worth it in reality due to you only being able to get a certain level of sound quality with simply replacing the speakers with ones which will fit the limited mounting depth

    i wouldnt advise putting the amp on the rear shelf either on top or underneath
    on top it will attract thieves and underneath it will not cool properly as the heat sink will effectively be upside down
    it is best mounted solidly either to the floor or a side panel

    it will depend on what size of amplifier you are using as to whether or not you will need to run 0 gauge cable or not
    most 4 channel amps on there own will not pull enough power to warrant such cable BUT THERE ARE SOME WHICH WILL
    plus if you are thinking about adding to the system at any time then you may well need the extra posibilities that 0 gauge affords you over 4 gauge
  3. macca

    macca Member

    ok, thanks for the input, money is an object in that case.

    i think at the moment on reflection i would like to stick to no custom door cards, i may go this route later once i have other things on the car sorted,


    i would like to spend upto say £800 on front and rear components. this doesn't include anything else, amps etc i will have seperate budget for and you have a very good point about the mounting of amps, i hadn't thought of that, i will make mdf spacers/mountings up if required as i see that these sound better looking at other posts.

    excuse my stupidity in the area of ice at the moment, but i have spent 15 years away from doing too much with stereos in the car and have forgotten a lot and things have changed so much.

    i don't want a killer spl or massive mobile disco, just the best i can get without butchering the car too much. but i still like quality, i have a audiolab system at home and would like something nice in the car.

    thanks in advance for anymore help
  4. AndyMac

    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

    There's really little point spending £400 on front components unless you are going to get the doors sorted. The front components are mounted to a flimsy hardboard doorcard, which in itself is loosely clipped to the equivalent of an oil drum. Then you have the space constraints on top.
    If you doubt you'll get door builds then I'd say spend £120 max on each set.
    Maybe spend the extra money on a couple of stealth sub enclosures for the boot - AutoAcoustics do off the shelf units for the B5 A4, but they're not cheap.
    For my money I wouldn't even bother with the rear deck speakers, unless you have a lot of rear passengers.
    I'd run 4 gauge cable, linked to a 4 channel amp, 2channels for the fronts, 2 channels bridged for the sub. 0 guage is not needed, and just makes the install really difficult. Rainbow 230slx's fit OK in the fronts with just an adapter ring, use MDF if you can and lots of Dynamat.
    If you go for the stealth enclosure then maybe look at 2 x 8" subs, which will give you more mid bass to compensate for the lack of mid bass on the front components.
  5. SteveTDCi

    SteveTDCi Active Member

    The Alpine speakers are cheap in US ebay, yes they cost to ship over and you may or may not get hit for duty but they still work out cheaper than over here.
  6. macca

    macca Member

    cool cheers everyone, going to have a look around and maybe listento some peoples installs before i commit too much, i like the look of the autoacoustics sub boxes for the boot, and they are not far from me either so i may have a visit.
  7. dualmono21

    dualmono21 Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

    £800 on components is way above most peoples budgets
    but i personally wouldnt spend a quarter of that on speakers without considering the installation ,mounting and positioning

    if you were prepared to have the door cards modified so as the fronts looked completely standard yet the backs had greater mounting depth and were a lot stronger then yes you could spend more money and probably get better results
    but with the choices you have outlined you would be unwise to spend more as you will not see the benefit

    if you are going to run a single 4 channel amp be carefull to spec the speakers according to the amplifier
    you may be better off with a single 8,10 or 12" subwoofer as opposed a pair
    you must make sure whichever amplifier you choose it is capable of driving the impedance load you decide on for a sub or subs

    0 gauge or 4 gauge cable again totally depends on what amplfier you are going to use and how you load it as to which cable you should use
  8. macca

    macca Member

    ok thanks everyone.

    will get professional advice when i decide more. i think now i may look into sorting the door cards out. also i think maybe just slightly better 2 ways are in order for the rear shelf and put the money into the front builds.

    i will be back on here for amp advice once i know what speakers to get.

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