Dodge Durango Forum banner

1 - 20 of 147 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Well ladies and gentlemen, I'm starting my audio build. First I'll say that I appreciate those who have gone before me, researching what they have and not being afraid to dig right in. Black Pearl's excellent deadening project was especially helpful, for instance. In an effort to help as many people as I can as I go on my own building journey, I've decided to measure, photograph, and comment on as much as I can. It will take much longer but one thing I have with this build is time, so I say let's go for it.

First up, I'm beginning the exploratory phase. This front speaker panel / defroster vent panel pops out with minimal effort. I simply used a plastic panel popper, and this popped right out.





The speaker opening in the panel is approximately 2.8"



The sun sensor measures approximately 0.92" wide on the top.

And has about .69" on the inside mounting point

(I measured those in case I try to mount a tweeter in the same spot, and transplant the sensor to the blank panel below)

The blank panel measures about 1.42"



This is the center channel speaker


It measures about 3.43" in diameter


It is about 1.85" deep


The speaker's height from the mounting point is .33"


The speaker's mounting holes are almost exactly 3.9" from each other, center to center.


The speaker's magnet diameter is 2.38"


The speaker mounting depth is only 1.75"


The area under the speaker is very cramped!



Just for fun I tried placing a Creative Sound Solutions 4.5" midrange (the VWR126), and was immediately prevented from placing it due to the magnet not fitting in. I didn't expect it to "work" but I did want to see the first place I'd get stuck. I think I could put a shallow 4" driver in there but with the speaker opening only ~2.8", it clearly would not benefit from a larger diameter. However, just looking at it, I'd say maybe a very powerful ~3" driver could do the job, like the Fountek FR89EX 4ohm https://www.madisoundspeakerstore.com/approx-3-fullrange/fountek-fr89ex-3-full-range-4-ohm/ or the GR Research LGK 1.0 LGK 1.0 which has a mounting depth of 1.75", so it would clear with a mounting plate. Another option could be a Scanspeak Discovery 10F, for instance. Of all these, I've installed and used the FR89EX and it is a great driver.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
The next area I felt like digging into was the D-pillar speaker panels

Here's the backside of the panel



Here's the speaker laid bare



Close!


So what we learned with those is they are identical to the center, and the depth / clearances are similar.

Next up, the trunk area



Gotta move this, believe this is the TPMS transceiver for the rear




Depth is about 7 1/4" at the rearmost spot


The whole area is almost exactly 36" wide


Shape with the carpeting, driver's side


It is about 20" long in the center from the backside of where the seats mount

And about 18" on the ends


The top panel is 1.5" deep, and can possibly be reused if I'm crafty enough



So the gameplan so far is to run the Image Dynamics 6x9 midbass drivers, a quality tweeter in the factory location, and build up the rest of the system to match acoustically. Of course the sub side of things will get a nice "bump" as well, hopefully all under the factory floor height. That's the target, as historically most of my builds are full-stealth systems with full trunk usability.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
134 Posts
Lanson,

Very interesting and informative for someone who is not an audio person at all. I am interested in the possibility of upgrading my speakers because I cant stand the sound coming out of that little 3" dash especially when it is used by the bluetooth on my phone. I think the door speakers are pretty bad as well and had one replaced as it sounded horrible mostly when playing news? My question to you is, how do you utilize the factory connectors with the aftermarket speakers? Are there connectors that can be purchased or does there have to be some cutting and soldering of new stuff? Thanks for your help!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,124 Posts
This is also very interesting to me as I cannot stand the Beats audio. Wish I had my alpine speakers back.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Lanson,

Very interesting and informative for someone who is not an audio person at all. I am interested in the possibility of upgrading my speakers because I cant stand the sound coming out of that little 3" dash especially when it is used by the bluetooth on my phone. I think the door speakers are pretty bad as well and had one replaced as it sounded horrible mostly when playing news? My question to you is, how do you utilize the factory connectors with the aftermarket speakers? Are there connectors that can be purchased or does there have to be some cutting and soldering of new stuff? Thanks for your help!
Cutting and soldering is my main process, and is exactly how I intended to get in there. I'm sure you could buy speaker pigtails, probably from a company like Metra or Scosche, but I've personally never used them. Unless absolutely forced to, I don't plan on using any of the factory wiring from my amp rack (to be) toward the speakers in this vehicle. If I can slip 14 or 16 gauge, 2 conductor sheathed cable through the doors, that's what I'm going to do. If I can't, I'll only use the factory wiring minimally, using it as a bridge with the shortest amount I can. According to the OEM wiring diagram, the wire is 18 gauge. Given the distances that wire travels and the power I intend to push through, I'd say there's a potential for loss here and I'm going to try to mitigate that as much as possible.
As far as the speaker sounding bad, I don't listen to news but I have to imagine it is because the system is always in "surround" mode, and news is likely monophonic. That's just a guess, but let's call it a highly educated one. As such, the system will likely sound too boomy, muddy. I think any surround system will struggle with mono voice like that, but you could bring down the EQ manually when listening to things like that I guess. The factory speakers (the ones I've seen so far) are "fine" but certainly not superstars. My guess is they are all standard Chinese Chrysler speakers, all standard efficient strontium magnets and paper cones, and while they do sound good (especially with the EQ tweaked a bit), they are certainly able to be improved. But adding amplifier power is vital as these efficient speakers will probably be louder than an aftermarket offering, without extra power.


This is also very interesting to me as I cannot stand the Beats audio. Wish I had my alpine speakers back.
I never heard the Alpine but if you can describe the lost qualities, maybe we can get it back.

To me, the biggest obvious failure is the lack of sufficient deadening/sealing in the doors. They DO have some materials in them, but on certain frequencies you'll notice excessive resonance in the panels themselves. This takes away from the musicality of the system, and actually deters me from listening to certain songs at a volume I would consider "loud". Certain songs excite the panels and ruin the experience, the immersion. Curing this will be at the tip-top of my list of things to do.


Before I tear apart the system, I do plan on breaking out my umik-1 calibrated mic, and running through REW to measure the average response of the factory system. I believe I can tap into the aux-in 1/8" phono input, and send test sweeps through that to get an accurate understanding of the factory setup. Doing this will give us the truth of the system's abilities, qualities, and limits. As far as resonance issues, I'll be able to measure distortion qualities, and resonance will report as a form of distortion. This will be very helpful in understanding what's happening, before trying to cure it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
301 Posts
Looking forward to seeing the results, great pictures too. I agree that the worst part is the sound deadening in the doors. Road/wind noise is minimal in the cabin but certain songs there's a few rattles in the door, sooner or later I'll wind up ripping the panels off and trying to fix it. Curious to see what you do for the doors and how it works.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,124 Posts
The alpine sub had way more bass and was much more consistent and music in general sounded quite good with the bass at -1 or -2. Now to get any bass out of the sub it seems like I have to set the bass much higher which just causes distortion on the other speakers. And rattles elsewhere. It almost seems like the bug fix for the EQ issues that my 14 had were fixed by damn near shutting off the sub. But it now almost has a mind of its own. Some music will have a fair amount of bass coming from the sub and the rest it's virtually nothing. I have confirmed that the sub is on even when it doesn't seem to be. Wish the EQ had a separate sub control
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
136 Posts
Before I tear apart the system, I do plan on breaking out my umik-1 calibrated mic, and running through REW to measure the average response of the factory system. I believe I can tap into the aux-in 1/8" phono input, and send test sweeps through that to get an accurate understanding of the factory setup. Doing this will give us the truth of the system's abilities, qualities, and limits. As far as resonance issues, I'll be able to measure distortion qualities, and resonance will report as a form of distortion. This will be very helpful in understanding what's happening, before trying to cure it.
An installer friend and I did the same a few weekends back and found that nearly a full frequency range was able to be drawn from summing the front door speakers. 1.5-4k seemed to be an issue though as those were down 3-8 db. Needed to add some boost to the UConnect's "mid" EQ before 2.5 came off of the floor of the RTA's range.

I'm currently interested in JL's Fix82 and Fix86 units as an option to detune the factory signal prior to processing. Judging by the RTA, it looked like there would be some work to do with taming the curve.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
An installer friend and I did the same a few weekends back and found that nearly a full frequency range was able to be drawn from summing the front door speakers. 1.5-4k seemed to be an issue though as those were down 3-8 db. Needed to add some boost to the UConnect's "mid" EQ before 2.5 came off of the floor of the RTA's range.

I'm currently interested in JL's Fix82 and Fix86 units as an option to detune the factory signal prior to processing. Judging by the RTA, it looked like there would be some work to do with taming the curve.
Awesome information! That's how you know you're working with a great shop, right there. That level of investigative work. Since I'm using a JBL MS-8 (had it for many years now in various installs) for this, I can fully expect the detune/flattening to be easy to do. It is inspiring to learn that just two front door speakers are sufficient, as I fully expected a need to use the tweeters, the center, the rear d-pillars, etc. (probably still will, since they get signals like rear-sense beeping, etc.)

MoparMike if you have more insight, please share everything you got. Little or big, it might help! Thanks in advance!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
OK so I've developed a gameplan. The equipment I've got:
JBL MS-8
Arc KS900.6 main amp
set of Image Dynamics 6x9 woofers

Equipment I think I'm going to add:
Sundown SD-3 12" sub in the cargo well area (or pair of SD-3 10's)
Sundown SAE 600d subwoofer amp
Image Dynamics 6.5" coaxial set for rear doors
Tweeters (unknown for the doors, I need to get in them to measure maximum dimensions.)
And solid quality 3-3.5" drivers for the d-pillars and center, especially the center. Thinking of the LGK 1.0 or may step down to a standard type of 3.5" coaxial speaker.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
83 Posts
Great thread... can't wait to hear more.

Lanson, I have some old Boston Pro 6.5s and was thinking about putting those in the front doors (if the tweets fit). I would obviously have to make a 6x9 baffle with a cut out for the 6.5 mid woofer. Those and a Boston amp are just sitting in my closet so I'd like to utilize them if it makes sense.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
Great thread... can't wait to hear more.

Lanson, I have some old Boston Pro 6.5s and was thinking about putting those in the front doors (if the tweets fit). I would obviously have to make a 6x9 baffle with a cut out for the 6.5 mid woofer. Those and a Boston amp are just sitting in my closet so I'd like to utilize them if it makes sense.
Great speakers BUT you're sacrificing major cone area there. You'd have to decide if you'd be OK with losing that much potential up-front midbass. In some situations it works out, but in others it can be a downgrade from stock's original design. Remember a 6x9 is essentially an 8" cone's worth of surface area, and when you compare a 6.5" to an 8" in terms of potential efficiency, frequency response, etc., you may find the compromise isn't worth it.

I sure wish Boston would have stayed in business. Great speakers and amps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
136 Posts
Awesome information! That's how you know you're working with a great shop, right there. That level of investigative work. Since I'm using a JBL MS-8 (had it for many years now in various installs) for this, I can fully expect the detune/flattening to be easy to do. It is inspiring to learn that just two front door speakers are sufficient, as I fully expected a need to use the tweeters, the center, the rear d-pillars, etc. (probably still will, since they get signals like rear-sense beeping, etc.)

MoparMike if you have more insight, please share everything you got. Little or big, it might help! Thanks in advance!
Just to be clear, that was both door speakers. Tweeter and 6x9. That's a good point that you bring up regarding the rear-sense signal though. The audio from hands-free calls is another concern I have since that seems like it comes from the center channel. I don't use the voice guidance on the nav often but would like to keep that option as well. I'll be following this thread both here and at DIYMA.
 

·
Administrator
Joined
·
8,007 Posts
As long as it's good and tight. I hate those systems that sound like they are using an old sail for the woofer. All they do is rattle and give big systems a bad name.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
As long as it's good and tight. I hate those systems that sound like they are using an old sail for the woofer. All they do is rattle and give big systems a bad name.
Definitely! Distortion in all forms will be targeted. I want to only open the doors once or twice, to keep the clips and all the parts in good condition, but my goal is to sweep the car and find where and what is resonating, and try to kill that resonance if I can. That's a type of distortion, and one of the worst IMHO. Clean and clear is all I build, or its not worth the time, effort, and money. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
OK more research pics

I believe these are the wires I'll need to tap in to. Convenient since they are "right here", no need to pull the rear 1/4 panel. We'll see if this works out






This is what the battery looks like, as viewed from under the seat. A tough location in some respects. Tough battery terminal setup too.






I started with some woodworking, just fabbing as I went in a sort of free-form mode, but I'm scrapping the design for something more sinister. Here's some pics of what I was working on, prior to the scrapping of this simple setup.

I decided to use a simple step design since I had tons of small scrap pieces laying around. Cutting these to shape worked well




That step setup was going to calculate out to ~.6 cubic feet with plenty of space above for the sub to set well under the factory floor covering.
Anyway, I'm scrapping that. If anybody local wants this "box" beginning, just claim it and enjoy.

I ordered a pair of passive radiators from creative sound, the 10" variety. I also ordered an Arc KS500.1 mini, which will sit in the trunk here with the rest of the gear. I ordered my front tweeters, a pair of creative sound LD22 tweeters which I'll cut down (somehow) to fit the factory location. I also ordered a Wavecor 3.5" fullrange speaker to install as the center. This speaker won over the Fountek FR89 I was considering due to a few reasons, one being the Qts of the speaker is much higher on the Wavecor and since the center channel area is not a sealed enclosure, the higher Qts will keep the speaker from flopping around out of control at high volume. It also has better sensitivity at 4ohm, and the response plot on and off-axis is stellar for a 3.5" speaker. I'm still hunting down the perfect micro 4 channel to power the rear D-pillars, and entertaining a simple series-wire setup for them to connect with the rear door speakers electrically. I also ordered more techflex to sheathe my wiring, red double-density LED light strip roll, and a couple other odds and ends. Basically, we're getting there.

edit: snagged a small 4ch amp to power up the rears and d-pillars as well. That's 3 amps and a processor, with 11 channels of amplification, and 8 channels of processing power.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #19 (Edited)
Update time, we start with this:


And I decided to carefully knife out the factory carpet to get to bedrock, so to speak. I'll be adding deadening (not sure if I'll pull out the stock stuff, it is really thorough) but this is the general trunk shape.



I decided to downfire, with a 2 1/2" spacer placed first



Had to put a slight cut in the spacer, to clear these drain things


This is the preliminary starting board. It might end up shorter than this, but this is maximum length to clear the spare tire wrench thing


Here's the reason for all the effort.


I realize that can be very hard to see, so I'll just describe. What we have here are 3 plots, each one with an 80 hz, 4th order LR slop on the Lowpass. The blue plot is a standard SD-3 10 D4 at 500W with a sealed box, about .7 cubic feet. The orange plot is a pair of SD-3's with the same 500W, with a bit larger box. The red plot is a single SD-3, and a pair of Creative Sound 10" PRs with added weight of 360 grams each, with a relatively small box of about .7 cubic feet (will try for bigger), just wanted to show the potential performance difference.

With equal power, the PR setup gains 2.6dB over a single sealed at 60hz, 3.6dB at 50hz, and after that the PR setup beats even a pair of 10's. So at 40hz, 4.4dB gain over single, and 30hz gets a 3.4dB gain over single. Things start evening out after that. So the idea with the PR set is to get that boost without taking much extra space. If it works out poorly, I'll just rebuild the box with a different set of subs, and write this off as an experience.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
870 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
Tiny update time, I didn't have much time to actually work on the truck since my water heater failed and I was scrambling.

Anyway, my KS500.1 mini came in. I wrapped it in shrink wrap to protect it during fabrication, and happened across a great new home for it.


There's sufficient clearance when the seat is up


And plenty when the seat is folded down as well


A small but important victory in the space battle, and ones like that will let me build a bigger subwoofer box which will make it more efficient with the passive radiators, and capable of a lower tune as well. The big space hogs are the MS-8 and the KS900.6, and there's not much I can do about that.


Some other goodies are on their way, but they are taking slower routes I guess. This Saturday my goal is to make it down to my upholstery supplies place and let them find me a match to my red leather interior, so I can get some beauty in that trunk area.
 
1 - 20 of 147 Posts
Top