B9 Audi Sound System vs B&O

pjeffe9172

Registered User
I have the B&O 3D Surround system too and agree it is the best sound system I’ve ever had in a car. I find the quality excellent from the DAB and via Bluetooth. Take the time to set it up, balance, fader etc. When it’s cranked up the bass vibrates the interior mirror and there is no distortion or speaker rattle at all. I’m looking to trade in for a new Audi and will make sure I tick the B&O option box.....at the end of the day it’s only £20 a month over 3 years...... I spend more on beer!
 

DohNut

Registered User
I had a B&O system in my Q5 back in 2011, it came as part of the then S-line Special Edition pack but have the standard system in my A4. I'm no audiophile but the standard system seems just as good to me.

I haven't heard the A4 B&O so cannot compare it to mine but I honestly think if you stick with the standard set-up you won't be disappointed.
 

ScottishA4B9

Registered User
There isn’t any difference between the B&O and the *** until you turn the sound up to excessive levels, then the B&O bass shines. But for the vast majority of people, the *** is great.
 

DaveW

Registered User
Is the B&O system available on its own, or do you have to get the Comfort & Sound Package?
 

A4A4

Owner of a Shiny Daytona
I like the B&O system but the sound quality is very dependent on what source you are using for your music.

If you using DAB, iPod, iPhone/mobile, devices connected via MMI cable etc..

The sound can be average and you need to check the volume and sound settings on these devices (iPod, Mobiles) which I found impacts the sound output in the car.

All my decent sound comes from either CD or SD card.

Lossless format is far the best.

So when I want a blast of B&O sound I choose a CD or SD.
 
3 weeks in with the audi sound system and i'm not impressed. I had the B&O in an A5 6 yrs ago and subsequently Meridian in a Range Rover and I have to keep turning the volume down on the Audi system as it's too screechy.

Can B&O be retro-fit?
 

cuke2u

Registered User
You might be better off talking to a specialist car audio shop, the b&o would be expensive to upgrade and you'd need to replace the door trims. Perhaps the standard audi audio might be better with improved speakers and dampening...
 

Gingertom

Registered User
Another B&O user here.
I have to say that I started off with mine set on the standard all round stereo setting listening to DAB and recorded stuff via my old ipod. All very acceptable but hardly the stunning experience I'd hoped for. I then started playing around with the settings (as you do) till I settled on Surround with a slight fader bias towards the rear. An instant improvement I have to say. Pipe something off CD or Apple Carplay and the sound is spectacular. Amazon streaming service sound quality seems particularly great.
I've still to experiment with improvements to the content of my Ipod but I've replaced a few of my old AAC format recording to ALAC which is definitely an improvement. All in all a very impressive listen and not even at a volume the neighbours would 'appreciate'.
Not used SD or the Jukebox option yet.
 

Hammerhead

Registered User
Could anyone post some recommended setting for the B&O
I'm pretty shocked it doesn't have an EQ! As others have said source material is key, I use TIDAL which is lossless/uncompressed streaming service and the B&O sounds pretty stunning, happy to try and improve it further though
 

Ben Harper

Registered User
Hi it's early days but the Audi 10 speaker system sounds rubbish to me -, even after a good fiddle. E91 standard vastly superior, as is standard mini clubman and mid range system in SE spec Tiguan.

Really, if you value music look elsewhere.

No middle at all and whilst you couldn't say it was particularly distorted, the flatness is just annoying. Dull, in keeping with the car really.
 

Syed Shah

Cars are a mans best friend, then dogs..
Hi it's early days but the Audi 10 speaker system sounds rubbish to me -, even after a good fiddle. E91 standard vastly superior, as is standard mini clubman and mid range system in SE spec Tiguan.

Really, if you value music look elsewhere.

No middle at all and whilst you couldn't say it was particularly distorted, the flatness is just annoying. Dull, in keeping with the car really.

Keywords are early days. It will be atleast 1000 hours plus of use before *** starts to fully bed in. Mine is alright now, speaker rattle is a major pain in the *** right now (haha no pun intended)
 

pagenotfound

Registered User
I think 1000hrs would likely be more time than a lot of people spend in their car before changing it so hope that isn't the case! I find the Audi Sound System to be brilliant but these things are all subjective, it did take a little bit of time to loosen up though. I source all music from an SD card with lossless audio files and have a wide range of music but listen mostly to classic rock. I have treble and bass clicked up 1 notch from neutral and the fader set slightly centre left and have punchy and controlled bass, good midrange and controlled highs - certainly not screechy or flat but if you are used to more EQ customisation or exaggerated highs and lows then maybe this system can't be tweaked to suit.
 

Zakalwe

Registered User
Keywords are early days. It will be atleast 1000 hours plus of use before *** starts to fully bed in. Mine is alright now, speaker rattle is a major pain in the *** right now (haha no pun intended)

I spend 30 mins in my car 5 days a week.

At that rate it’d be 8yrs using your figure before the *** beds in!

If accurate I’d say that’s a humungous design flaw.
 

Syed Shah

Cars are a mans best friend, then dogs..
I spend 30 mins in my car 5 days a week.

At that rate it’d be 8yrs using your figure before the *** beds in!

If accurate I’d say that’s a humungous design flaw.

they are not my own words, this is something i heard from an garage that often works on them. they could have overexaggerated but for me i have spent something over 1000 hours in my car and now it sounds better. Before around the 800hr mark *** was awful
 

BigAardvaark

Registered User
The audiophiles will argue amps and even cables need to be "run in" which is of course absolute cack. But speakers do. Max recommendation I can find is 4 or 5 days continuous loud use. So maybe your source has got 100 hours mixed up with a 1000?

Regardless, the above examples are not even close to changing the sound of a speaker from "****" to "**** hot" so I don't know how to explain your 800 hour change if you've left every setting, etc, the same?
 

Syed Shah

Cars are a mans best friend, then dogs..
The audiophiles will argue amps and even cables need to be "run in" which is of course absolute cack. But speakers do. Max recommendation I can find is 4 or 5 days continuous loud use. So maybe your source has got 100 hours mixed up with a 1000?

Regardless, the above examples are not even close to changing the sound of a speaker from "****" to "**** hot" so I don't know how to explain your 800 hour change if you've left every setting, etc, the same?

He defo said 1000 hours. I cant guarantee his accuracy as many are pointing out.

As for my own speakers, its either one of 2 things... either after hearing that 1000hour thing, it became a mental thing for me and i started forcing myself to hear a clear difference (if you get what i mean) or secondly that speaker rattle went down majorly and randomly just about 2 months ago so i assumed the 1000hr thing to be of some credibility.

As for the settings, they were changed pretty much a few days into ownership and have stayed the same since. (apart from the bass occasionally being knocked up or back down to my normal position.)
 

Ben Harper

Registered User
Funny how the beema, mini and even tiguan were excellent, very good and not objectionable (respectfully) when brand new. I'd suggest this Audi speaker bedding in period is just thee brain coming to terms with naff sound
 

WesT-gefül

Well-Known Member
Bronze Supporter
The Audi 10 speaker system isn’t great in the B9. Not very loud either. Rear boot speaker rattles when strained. Must say I was impressed with the A6 and now the Q2 system. If you had the money to throw at the BO, I would (in the b9)
 

pagenotfound

Registered User
Funny how the beema, mini and even tiguan were excellent, very good and not objectionable (respectfully) when brand new. I'd suggest this Audi speaker bedding in period is just thee brain coming to terms with naff sound

Just curious what spec A4 you have, presumably you test drove and spent some time in one before buying and would have thought the same then or was there only a fully specced up one as a demo?
 

Riko0073

Registered User
Very happy with the B&O in my S4, no distortion when cranked up and plenty of bass when needed.

Think I need to play around with different music sources as only playing off my Apple Music via iPhone plugged into the cable, but more than happy with that quality, anything better than that is just a bonus!
 

BigAardvaark

Registered User
Think I need to play around with different music sources

Explore the SD Card option, lossless is supported but overkill given the environment, HQ MP3 (320kbps) is more than sufficient.
 

Evil Derboy

Registered User
I have the B&O on my A5. Same B9 platform so imagine it’s the same as the A4. It’s good but it’s not as good as the Bose in my wife’s Q3.

Crank things up too high and the sub under the parcel shelf starts to rattle. Add to that I’ve already had to put some fabric tape around the inside of the speaker grill on the drivers door to cure the same thing. If a bit of dynamat sorts the sub rattle I’ll be happy, but I’d have thought for the money it should be perfect out of the factory.
 
Hi it's early days but the Audi 10 speaker system sounds rubbish to me -, even after a good fiddle. E91 standard vastly superior, as is standard mini clubman and mid range system in SE spec Tiguan.

Really, if you value music look elsewhere.

No middle at all and whilst you couldn't say it was particularly distorted, the flatness is just annoying. Dull, in keeping with the car really.
Partly subjective but unless it wasn't the standard BMW stereo you really cannot compare a B9 to any std BMW kit. It's light years ahaed. The *** 10 speaker system is renowned to be quite good. If you think it's crap that's fine but if you say the E91 is better that's simply wrong.

I've had B & O in my 2008 A5 and it was OK but I found the A6 standard kit was better for normal levels. Then I had an F31 which was so bad I began to listen to R4 & 5 only! IMHO the B9 is a shockingly good standard set up. If anyone thinks it sounds crap then if I were you I'd be back at the dealers,especially after reading most of the mag reviews.

One thought here, as everyone says they're cranking it up all the time, maybe 1000 hours is enough to go deaf then even the BMW F3* system will suffice!!
 

cuke2u

Registered User
All I can say about sound systems is that if you put cr*p in you get cr*p out...
 

Zakalwe

Registered User
All I can say about sound systems is that if you put cr*p in you get cr*p out...

Not only is this true but I’m sceptical about judging vehicular sound systems from forum posts. I was researching online whether or not to get the upgraded HK system in my F22 and it turned out that many of the people who thought it was rubbish were judging it on the basis of listening to music from their phones via BT and the radio. As with audio equipment in any environment, there’s no substitute for a prolonged audition using a high quality source with which you’re very familiar.
 

Ben Harper

Registered User
Was a 2011 LCI 'edition' E91. Pretty sure it was the standard set up. Never sounded flat in the middle like this even when new.

Mini cooper D also has always sounded better as does Tiguan.

I have all 3 cars on the drive (mini, Tiguan, and A4) - just spent half hour again fiddling with the bass and treble whilst playing the 'attack of the grey lantern' remaster/reissue. If you know the album you'll understand why this is an excellent test card.


Let me assure you, I am not wrong. If you need to justify your purchase option by convincing yourself that all you read was accurate then fine. Knock yourself out. I have no such desire and would advise anyone who is likely to be bothered by substandard sound to consider upgrading.

Sadly my car allowance would not stretch any further than a sline/tecpack/20k and a Tiguan/SE/8k.

Peace out
 

pagenotfound

Registered User
Having previously run an R50 Mini Cooper (2003), an R56 Mini Cooper (2007) and a Passat CC (2009) with first the RCD510 and then the RNS510 I can't say I felt any of those sound systems were anything special but neither were they terrible. In my opinion, the ones in the Minis were worse than the Passat. Can't comment on any of the newer Minis. For me, the Audi sound system is the best one I've had in a car (and the first with a sub) and as long as I don't hear a B&O one then I won't know or care if I'm missing out. I think that the dash mounted centre speaker is the predominant speaker in the set-up and to my ears it took a short while to loosen up but was then fine. It's all completely subjective though so I agree with you, Ben, if you are likely to be bothered then go for the B&O but try listening to both back to back just to be sure it is worth the extra coin.
 

samh1992

Registered User
Having got my s4 today with the Audi standard speakers it was a bit meh but cranked up a bit while played via a cable on Spotify on the highest quality it actually is quite good.
 

cuke2u

Registered User
Thing is any audio systems can be optimised for the environment it is in, thus it will always have strengths and weaknesses and it depends upon how the car manufacturer has designed it to be, if indeed they have bothered and not just thrown big speakers at it. It is no good what so ever playing one track, or album, from one genre and then compare the same in another vehicle because each vehicle's audio system will be different and optimised in a different way.
Hence my term, cr*p in cr*p out.

I would never pay a sum of money for a 'proper' home audio system without it being at home to test first and foremost, then play known music that can fully test a system out, and these can be found in a good hifi publications worth their salt, and a selection of my own choice which I know can test a system.

Same should be said for car audio systems, however the environment within a car is probably one of the more challenging ones because it is inherently unstable thus changing the sound in subtle ways.

The other thing is that at different ages our ability to hear different frequencies, particularly the high ones, diminishes and alters. So a young person can probably pick up a 20hz-20,000hz, whereas someone older will not. Having said that this can also vary considerably from one person to another.

Basically the arguments about the *** versus the the B&O are more than likely to be subjective and should be treated with a pinch of salt and seen as what the individual is happy with.
Phew...
 

Fozzie1960

Registered User
As @cuke2u said this will always be a subjective subject. Those with *** will extol its virtues, as will those with the B&O. However, at the end of the day, it comes down personal choice, if people want to spend their hard earned cash on the B&O it is their prerogative.
 

DaveW

Registered User
I've now added the B&O system to my spec, so in anticipation of delivery (God knows when that will be!), would anyone be so kind as to post what settings they are using. I know it's down to personal taste, but a "starter for 10" would be most helpful.
Thanks,
Dave
 

Fozzie1960

Registered User
Here’s mine

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