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Old 01-10-2014, 11:22 AM   #1
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Upgrading TJ Audio System Recommendations

Hello. I just purchased my Jeep about a month ago. I'm looking to upgrade the audio system for preferably under $1,000. This is what I am planning on buying so far:

1x Alpine CDE-HD149BT-$230
2x Polk Audio DB651 6.5-Inch Coaxial Speakers-$70
1x NalminMFG Dash Component Package (2x Polk Audio db5251 with mounts)-$200

I need help with what Subwoofer I should buy (I'm thinking 10") and also what amp(s) would be good for this system. Thanks in advance

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Old 01-10-2014, 11:29 AM   #2
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What year is your Jeep? Are you looking for extreme bass or just something to fill in the sound?

I ask the year because later model TJs had and option for the 7 speaker premium sound system that has a subwoofer in the console. If you just want a little bass to fill in the sound nicely there is a good kicker option for the console replacement speaker.

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Old 01-10-2014, 11:44 AM   #3
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I love the Polk audios for off road vehicles. I wouldn't buy the last thing you linked being the 521 package or something. If you buy the adapter plate for $15 and the console speakers separately they're $50 for the pair. As the guy said above me depends what sound you're going for. One 10" sub would be okay on the stock amp. If you want the best of your speakers you need a 4 channel amp to boost them the HU isn't enough. They make class D amps that are company and fit in/under your dash.
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Old 01-10-2014, 12:50 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Big Sarge View Post
What year is your Jeep? Are you looking for extreme bass or just something to fill in the sound?

I ask the year because later model TJs had and option for the 7 speaker premium sound system that has a subwoofer in the console. If you just want a little bass to fill in the sound nicely there is a good kicker option for the console replacement speaker.
2004 Jeep Wrangler X Columbian Edition and yea it does have the subwoofer in the center console but I believe it's only 6.5". I'd like a 10" subwoofer in the trunk. I'm looking for more bass than I currently have.
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Old 01-10-2014, 12:53 PM   #5
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I love the Polk audios for off road vehicles. I wouldn't buy the last thing you linked being the 521 package or something. If you buy the adapter plate for $15 and the console speakers separately they're $50 for the pair. As the guy said above me depends what sound you're going for. One 10" sub would be okay on the stock amp. If you want the best of your speakers you need a 4 channel amp to boost them the HU isn't enough. They make class D amps that are company and fit in/under your dash.
Yea they look like the best option for me. I'd need two adapter plates which would be $30 then two tweeter mounts for another $30. The cheapest I saw the pair of component speakers with tweeters was $110. Can you tell me where you saw them for cheaper? Also what brand is a good one for a small amp that'll fit under my dash? Thanks
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Old 01-10-2014, 04:42 PM   #6
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Hey Homer,

I just went through the exact process as you and think you are off to a great start. I just put in the Alpine CDE-HD149BT and it is sweet!

You are on the right track with the Polks, but are you planning on putting an amp to them? I would go with the PBR300X4 or Alpine KTP-445A, which are small and can be mounted super easily under the dash and will provide a decent amount of extra power to the mids-highs.

For the sub, I think that's a no-brainer. Go with a setup like this: Subwoofer inside of a Jeep Wrangler rear seat

OR

Sound Ordnance B-8PTD 125-watt compact powered subwoofer at Crutchfield.com

Chas will probably post and tell you to go 5.25's instead of 6.5s in the sound bar. I think it is personal preference and could go either way.

FWIW, I was originally going to go with Polks like you but went the CDT audio route. I kind of wish I'd gone with Polks and the recommendation above because the CDT setup cost a bit more and can probably go WAY louder than I want it to since the speakers are so close.
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Old 01-10-2014, 06:30 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by HOMERtheJEEP View Post
Hello. I just purchased my Jeep about a month ago. I'm looking to upgrade the audio system for preferably under $1,000. This is what I am planning on buying so far:

1x Alpine CDE-HD149BT-$230
2x Polk Audio DB651 6.5-Inch Coaxial Speakers-$70
1x NalminMFG Dash Component Package (2x Polk Audio db5251 with mounts)-$200

I need help with what Subwoofer I should buy (I'm thinking 10") and also what amp(s) would be good for this system. Thanks in advance
For the sub i run a 10inch powered bazooka tube that fits perfectly behind the rear seat. You wont be heard from a mile away but its an amazing upgrade over stock. It sounds good with country music and the rap i listen to. Its also very easy to remove for when i want to go topless and not have it stolen.
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Old 01-11-2014, 12:11 AM   #8
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I got this
http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B0082D...ef=mp_s_a_1_23

Sounds sick! Pricey though. Fits like a glove man. If it's at the slightest angle it won't move. Just fits. Will thwart Thieves for sure. I put it on blocks as the ports are in top corners and blocked from sides if left on floor although it sounds same. May lower it back. And my amp is a Rockford 500-1 let me look for a link.

Rockford Fosgate Prime R500-1 500-Watt Mono Amplifier
http://amzn.com/B001P86SMK

Amp is a powerful cheap fella. It's huge but fits under the back seat.

I listen to metal, pop, classic rock and it is crisp. Especially the pop tracks with bass. And before anyone gets a chance I don't listen to justin Bieber when I say pop lol.
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Old 01-11-2014, 01:55 AM   #9
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Chas will probably post and tell you to go 5.25's instead of 6.5s in the sound bar. I think it is personal preference and could go either way.
Chas thinks he will stay out of this discussion.
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Old 01-11-2014, 02:10 AM   #10
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Chas thinks he will stay out of this discussion.
Get in it man! I read a ton of reviews before I bought my stuff. An extra opinion only helps and this seems to be your forte. Enlighten
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Old 01-11-2014, 03:09 AM   #11
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Get a marine grade radio.
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Old 01-11-2014, 08:42 AM   #12
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Yea they look like the best option for me. I'd need two adapter plates which would be $30 then two tweeter mounts for another $30. The cheapest I saw the pair of component speakers with tweeters was $110. Can you tell me where you saw them for cheaper? Also what brand is a good one for a small amp that'll fit under my dash? Thanks
Amazon.com: Polk Audio DB521 5.25-Inch Coaxial Speakers (Pair, Silver): Car Electronics

the 521s have a tweeter on them $57 for the pair

Amazon.com: Jeep Wrangler (Tj, Rubicon, Unlimited) Front Dash Speaker Adapter 1997-2006. Converts 4 By 6 Inch Factory Speakers to 5.25 Inch Aftermarket Speakers (4x6" to 5.25").: Car Electronics

mounting plate for $13

If you're looking for separate tweeters from your mids I never found them to be all that desirable you'd need a different setup than the one I posted
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Old 01-11-2014, 09:25 AM   #13
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Nalin speaker adapters

I have an extra set of speaker adapters for dash and tweeters, they are from Nalin. Still in the priority mail box he sent them in. Make me an offer
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:04 PM   #14
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Thanks Everyone for all the help and suggestions! I appreciate it. I think this is the setup I am going to go with...

For the headunit...Alpine CDE-HD149BT
For the front speakers and tweeters...Polk Audio db5251 Components
For the soundbar speakers in the rear...Polk Audio DB651s 6.5 inch Coaxial Speakers
For the amp for the 4 speakers...Alpine KTP-445A Power Pack
For the subwoofer...Bazooka BTA10100 (100-watt powered 10" Bass Tube)

Does anyone see anything wrong with this setup? Anyone have any better suggestions? Also should I go with the Polk Audio db5251 Components with the separate 1" tweeters with 2 crossovers or the cheaper db521 3/4" tweeter in the center of the speaker with no crossovers? Its a difference of about 90 bucks. Thanks in advance
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:28 PM   #15
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I think it will sound great. I'm sure you will love your set up. You have done tons of research. Go for it! I have no experience with tweeters so no advice there.
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Old 01-12-2014, 04:02 PM   #16
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You should love it...maybe the Infinity Basslink instead of Bazooka. I have had both and Basslink is better I think.
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Old 01-12-2014, 05:02 PM   #17
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Thanks Everyone for all the help and suggestions! I appreciate it. I think this is the setup I am going to go with...

For the headunit...Alpine CDE-HD149BT
For the front speakers and tweeters...Polk Audio db5251 Components
For the soundbar speakers in the rear...Polk Audio DB651s 6.5 inch Coaxial Speakers
For the amp for the 4 speakers...Alpine KTP-445A Power Pack
For the subwoofer...Bazooka BTA10100 (100-watt powered 10" Bass Tube)

Does anyone see anything wrong with this setup? Anyone have any better suggestions? Also should I go with the Polk Audio db5251 Components with the separate 1" tweeters with 2 crossovers or the cheaper db521 3/4" tweeter in the center of the speaker with no crossovers? Its a difference of about 90 bucks. Thanks in advance
Looks good and should sound great! My only question is - Do you plan to use the CD player? If not, save $200 and get the Alpine UTE-42BT - very similar specs but no CD player
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Old 01-12-2014, 05:20 PM   #18
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Pm sent about the system I have for sale. Not sure if it interests you, but I'll try. Here's a link to my CL ad. https://post.craigslist.org/manage/4216034851
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Old 01-12-2014, 05:24 PM   #19
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Old 01-12-2014, 07:12 PM   #20
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Looks like a good selection. I noticed you picked the 100 watt amplified bazooka tube, is there any reason you did this? I didnt realize they had any powered tubes other then the 250 watt.
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:16 PM   #21
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Get in it man! I read a ton of reviews before I bought my stuff. An extra opinion only helps and this seems to be your forte. Enlighten
Thanks for the support. There are a lot of people here who like Polk speakers, and I don't want to offend. If I were going to upgrade my speakers "and" I wanted an amp, I just wouldn't choose Polk speakers.

The reason is that it isn't cost efficient to me. Most HU's are 50watts max, and If I wanted more power, I would look to probably double that power but make it clean. This is what I did when I upgraded my system. Polk Speakers can't handle that type of power. Spending a lot of money just to make the power clean, when we need more power in our Jeeps, isn't cost efficient to me. I don't think the OP is improving the power, he is just making it clean. The idea of an amp is more power, not the same power. So, I don't think its cost efficient.
I don't consider 50watt ampifiers an "amped" system, when the HU is 50watts.
Alpine Type R or CDT's yes, but not Polks.

Also, if the OP is going to have 45watts per speaker, he would want 200 to 250 watts on the sub. From my research, 100watts is not enough. 100watts would probably be good on the HU without the speakers being amped.

For example, most 5-Channel amps have this setup for this same reason. You need much more power for the subwoofer, like four to five times as much.

Alpine PDX-V9 100watt speakers +500watt sub channel.

Look at other 5-channel amps and you'll see its the same.
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Old 01-12-2014, 08:43 PM   #22
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Also, if the OP is going to have 45watts per speaker, he would want 200 to 250 watts on the sub. From my research, 100watts is not enough. 100watts would probably be good on the HU without the speakers being amped.
X2 this is what i was thinking
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:46 PM   #23
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Yep, that Bazooka is too weak for that setup. An Infinity Basslink would be about perfect though.

It would be a nice and balanced system then.

Also, while I agree with Chas on some things, I think that his ideas are way to big for our Jeeps. I put CDTs in partially from his recommendation and think they are WAY too much for such a small space and with the speakers being so close to our heads. I think your idea of Polks is just right but you just need more on the sub end than the Bazooka. I wish I'd spent a lot less and gone with Polks like you. I actually have some that I put in my Jeep soundbar for a bit, but they are really reserved for my Speed 3.
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:46 PM   #24
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You should love it...maybe the Infinity Basslink instead of Bazooka. I have had both and Basslink is better I think.
Ok I'll look into it thanks
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:48 PM   #25
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Looks like a good selection. I noticed you picked the 100 watt amplified bazooka tube, is there any reason you did this? I didnt realize they had any powered tubes other then the 250 watt.
I'm pretty sure the 250 watt bazooka tube got discontinued
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Old 01-12-2014, 10:51 PM   #26
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Thanks for the support. There are a lot of people here who like Polk speakers, and I don't want to offend. If I were going to upgrade my speakers "and" I wanted an amp, I just wouldn't choose Polk speakers.

The reason is that it isn't cost efficient to me. Most HU's are 50watts max, and If I wanted more power, I would look to probably double that power but make it clean. This is what I did when I upgraded my system. Polk Speakers can't handle that type of power. Spending a lot of money just to make the power clean, when we need more power in our Jeeps, isn't cost efficient to me. I don't think the OP is improving the power, he is just making it clean. The idea of an amp is more power, not the same power. So, I don't think its cost efficient.
I don't consider 50watt ampifiers an "amped" system, when the HU is 50watts.
Alpine Type R or CDT's yes, but not Polks.

Also, if the OP is going to have 45watts per speaker, he would want 200 to 250 watts on the sub. From my research, 100watts is not enough. 100watts would probably be good on the HU without the speakers being amped.

For example, most 5-Channel amps have this setup for this same reason. You need much more power for the subwoofer, like four to five times as much.

Alpine PDX-V9 100watt speakers +500watt sub channel.

Look at other 5-channel amps and you'll see its the same.
I think I'm going to stick with the polks for the speakers I'm not looking to spend much more than that but are you saying I should get a more powerful amp? If so any suggestions? I picked the alpine ktp-445a cause it was small and would fit under the dash. I'll look into the infinity basslink for a more powerful sub
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Old 01-12-2014, 11:07 PM   #27
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I think I'm going to stick with the polks for the speakers I'm not looking to spend much more than that but are you saying I should get a more powerful amp? If so any suggestions? I picked the alpine ktp-445a cause it was small and would fit under the dash. I'll look into the infinity basslink for a more powerful sub
I think the amp you have selected is just right for the Polks. The problem is, if you keep beefing up one area, then you will need to to the same with others. If you add a bigger amp to the Polks, then you will need way more subwoofer to even things out on the low end.

What you have put together so far is just about the perfect mix and within your budget. FWIW, I have Polks all around and a Basslink in my Speed3 and it's a great balance. If anything, I would keep your plan but with an Infinity Basslink or the Arsenal I linked above. I started out with ambitions like yours and ended up with way more of a system than I needed and for a lot more $$$. I kind of regret it now.
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Old 01-13-2014, 12:26 AM   #28
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I have basslink in mine, fits perfect, sounds great. Built in amp saves room, super compact. Best value as well in my opinion.
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Old 01-13-2014, 08:08 AM   #29
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I highly recommend you spend the couple bucks extra and get some speaker baffles for your 6.5" sound bar speakers. I even put some Stinger Roadkill mat behind the baffle so they are doubled up. It made a HUGE difference in sound quality. Midbass has a little more thump and the overall sound is rich and full instead of tinny and annoying.


Currently running Kenwood Excelon head unit (nothin special but gets the job done and looks good), cheap Kicker DS 6.5" speakers (walmart- $60), Boston 4.25" front speakers (crutch field), Fosgate 500 watt mono Prime amp (got on Craigslist for $70), Kicker Comp 12" (craigslist- traded some Xbox games) in a WalMart enclosure ($30).

Wiring is solid copper 8 gauge power/ground and RCA (Scosche brand $35 WalMart)) with soldered and heatshrinked connections. Ground is straight to the body with a fat 1/2" bolt. Speaker wire is solder tipped JL Audio.

Your install weighs HUGE in how good your system sounds. I work on my install very often. It helps a lot.
Craigslist has a ton of great car audio stuff on it. I have scored some great items on there and also bartered out of the things I didn't need.

Good luck!
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Old 01-13-2014, 09:34 AM   #30
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I highly recommend you spend the couple bucks extra and get some speaker baffles for your 6.5" sound bar speakers. I even put some Stinger Roadkill mat behind the baffle so they are doubled up. It made a HUGE difference in sound quality. Midbass has a little more thump and the overall sound is rich and full instead of tinny and annoying.


Your install weighs HUGE in how good your system sounds. I work on my install very often. It helps a lot.
Craigslist has a ton of great car audio stuff on it. I have scored some great items on there and also bartered out of the things I didn't need.

Good luck!
This is GREAT advice. I was going to say similar but was just too lazy to type it at the time.

I need to do some baffles behind mine. I put some polyfill in but don't think it is doing squat.

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