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I'm about to put a complete stereo system in my car since I have nothing at this moment. I want to get some quality speakers and a good amp but have some confusions about the subwoofer. Do I really need subwoofer to achieve a nice sound? I don't want to pump that bass like some people you probably hear on the street but I like the clear and round bass. Considering the size of the car and the quality of the speakers (my moms 2007 Mustang has no subwoofer but still sounds good) would two good kick panel speaker and a quality dual voice coil dash speaker do the job?
I'm one of those who loves a GREAT sounding car stereo (nothing replaces the sound of a well-running hot rod, though).

Currently, I have a Retrosound Model 2 with Retrosound 4x6s in the doors, and 6x9s in the package tray of my '71.  The interior is completely deadened with RAAMat, which helps the stereo work more efficiently (without having to compete with unwanted noises that would otherwise soak-in through vibrations and empty spaces).  The system is merely 'adequate,' IMHO.  Its sound is roughly along the same lines as a nice 4-speaker set-up in a '90s to mid-2000s car: not quite all there, kind of flat, and not a lot of power.

To help it along, I have a set of MTX Terminator 10" subs with a matching MTX Terminator 200 watt amp... which, now I just need to get off me arse and build the box to fit behind the rear seat (non-fold down).  Once that's finally in, I'll tune it to what I call a 'generic' setting - that's where the bass output level is somewhere in the middle of the amp's powerband in relation to the rest of the sound output from the other speakers - and I set the head unit's crossover to block anything below 120Hz from going to the main speakers and send everything below 120Hz to the subs (to kill off any chance of bass distortion through the main speakers).  From that point, if one of the tunes isn't putting out enough bass for my liking, I can turn up the amp's 'gain' a little to get the full sound I want... and turn it back down for other tunes that have too much.  That's really the only way to get at least close to what you want without having to constantly mess with the EQ or Bass/Mid/High settings buried way down deep in the stereo's menu of options (no more simple knobs or buttons to handle single functions like that anymore on modern stereos, after all).  I'd be surprised if I'm pushing the amp and subs past 40% of their capabilities, even when I have it all cranked up while on my way to work.

I've had similar set-ups in my trucks/daily drivers:  Decent lower/mid-range aftermarket head unit, factory or mid-range aftermarket speakers, and a nice set of mid-range subs with about 200watts of amp.  I like nice full sound with a confident bass presence - it's gotta be there.  Now, I'm not saying I'm into the boomy stuff or anything like that, but I do have a few tunes that can get like that and it's gotta be done right when it does.  Most of my other daily driver systems have been JVC head unit, Infinity speakers, and MTX subs, but I've had good luck with Pioneer and Kenwood head units as well as Kicker subs.

Just because you're adding an amp and subs to round out your system, doesn't mean you need to tune it to keep up with hood rats and their rolling bass cannons.

Hope this helps!


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[+] 1 user Likes Mister 4x4's post
I'm sorry - to actually answer your question: I don't believe a 3 speaker set-up is going to sound even as nice as the one in your Mom's 2007 Mustang.  The 2 speakers in the doors/kick panels will be firing at your feet, and the middle speaker in the dash will convert the whole sound from stereo to mono - which just sounds like crap, IMHO.

At the very least, go with a full set of full-range speakers and a nice head unit with built-in EQ settings.  You can at least tune out some of the 'tinny' mid-range sounds and make it sound bigger than it is, and a nice full-range speaker will give you at least some of the bass without getting as distorted when you do turn it up.


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[+] 1 user Likes Mister 4x4's post

I'm thinking about this package (https://www.classiccarstereos.com/1969-1...o-kit.html) with KS speakers, 5ch amp and "10 sub.
The reason I'm asking about the lack of sub is because like you I think nothing replaces the sound of a hot rod so I never listen music in town, Smile .BUT since this is my daily driver for long distance/time driving it's better to have some music.  The set is around $500 without the sub/5ch amp and around a grand with these.

My car's 'comfort' is more important than mine and if I'd be fine without a sub I could get a set of headers and the stereo at the same time. Big Grin You're can't have your cake and eat it too...
Reading you're reply I'll stick with a complete kit with a sub but knowing myself I'll get my headers/exhaust sooner than the stereo. Big Grin
In my other rides I have had very good sound out of 6x9 Kickers. I added these in a custom made boxed behind the rear seat to my Mustang, but the sound was not great (https://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-musc...#pid298424). It is probably a combination of the boxes being too small and being too far back. That's when I decided I needed to add a subwoofer. I ended up installing a small Kenwood that fitted in the kickpanel on the passenger side (https://www.7173mustangs.com/thread-musc...#pid348215). This system doesn't rock the car, but it is deep enough to satisfy my ear. What I like of this install is that I didn't need to cut anything and it is well hidden that no one would be able to see it, just hear it. The one clue that that a subwoofer is installed, is the wired remote used to control volume. I really like this one so I can control the bass depending on what I am listening to. The remote wire is under the center console, and the remote is just ahead of the driver's seat on the tunnel.

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1971 M-Code Mach 1 w/Ram Air, 408 stroker, 285/291 0.558" roller cam, Blue Thunder intake, TKO600, Hooker headers with electric cut-offs, FiTech EFI w/ RobBMC PowerSurge pump
Strange center section with Truetrac, 3.5 gear and 31 spline axles, 4-wheel disc brakes
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