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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So on to the next project. Thanks to everyone who helped with my bar selection and install (Wild 1 612s). Bike is much more comfortable to ride now! My next project is a little bigger (aka more expensive). I want to upgrade the audio on my 13 RGU. Nothing huge, just want louder, cleaner audio at highway speed. I am currently shopping around by going to the local audio store who has a great deal of experience in motorcycle audio, but also online at reputable audio stores (Garage Bagger, Custom Soundz, ect.). I will post what I hear from each place, and would greatly appreciate your .02 as my knowledge of audio setups is lacking. Feel free to recommend setups as well, but nothing too crazy! Definitely not looking to spend more than 800 bucks at the most.



First up is the local shop. I was very surprised to find out how much knowledge these guys have. They knew they had to use adapters to make the larger speakers fit, and have smaller amps to install in the fairing. Here's what they recommended for my set up.



4x JL TR650 CXI - $130 a pair (this is the installed price)

JL MHX280/4 Amp - $225

Alpine CDE-143BT Receiver - $125

Kit for handlebar controls - $90

Install kit and harness - $45

Labor - $125

TOTAL - $870



A bit more than I want to spend, but it will be installed by professionals and I know it will be done right (more than I can say for myself). Any feedback would be greatly appreciated. I'll continue this thread as I get more info.


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JL Audio is very nice stuff.

It'll sound good at lower volumes, but the efficiency of those speakers combined with an amp of only 50w RMS per channel might not give you as much clean volume as you might expect.

I would get more power if possible. Rockford makes some stuff that works great with Harley. I have two soundstream amps on my bike with infinity Kappas and a Pioneer HU. It's pretty nice.

I also added speakers in the lowers. That makes a HUGE improvement.
 

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CVFFCV
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I'll be watching this thread, I don't have any input, but am researching audio upgrades. I almost bought the Hogtunes kit, but a 200x4 amp seems kinda low... Been looking around for thoughts and ideas on the Rockford amp, and which speakers to pair it with.
 

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Just remember that you get what you pay for. What sounds good in a showroom doesn't always translate at highway speeds. If you want "great sound", go with earbuds.

Not sure who's install kit they plan to use, but not all are created equal, and what about rain on that head unit??
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Chasarms, what type of soundstream amp do you have? I've heard good things about them. Also heard good things about the Kappa speakers too. I'll take a look at those as well.
 

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Chasarms, what type of soundstream amp do you have? I've heard good things about them. Also heard good things about the Kappa speakers too. I'll take a look at those as well.
I have the PN2.350D (175 RMS x 2) driving the mains in the front fairing. I have the PN4.320D (80W RMS x 4) driving the lowers and the rears. My speakers are Kappa 62.11i front and front lowers. I have 5.25" Kappas in the tourpak pods.

I learned a lot about stereo installation from some really good SQ guys. I have installed a BUNCH of car stereos. I was always taught that you'll get the best performance if you have 1.5-2x the RMS rating for the amp that you do for the speakers.

The reasoning behind it is that if you drive the speakers past max capabilities, the audible distortion is pretty obvious and/or you'll hear them physically bottoming out. Plus, a good quality speaker can survive this for a modest period of time. However, if you drive an amp to max output, you not only endanger the amp, but the speakers as well.

Speakers depend on the air moved by the cone to cool the voice coils which are heated by the AC voltage running through the coils. When an amp begins to clip -- that is, pushed to and beyond max output -- the voltage going through the coils increases but the physical movement of the cone does not. If it gets hot enough to fuse the windings in the coil, the speaker is toast. A clipping amp is a less obvious to the ear, and so this can happen far more easily. You'll never burn a coil in a speaker rated 150 RMS with a 40 watt amp, but if the two are close, you can.

Of course, if you set up with 2x RMS power and make a habit of jacking it wide open all the time, you'll eventually beat the speaker motors apart.

Lastly, I do need to say that a watt is a watt. As long as the amp(s) and speakers are being operated within spec, the output volume is dictated by the voltage output of the amp and the efficiency of the speakers. That is -- with the same speakers -- a 50W RMS amp making 45 watts will be equally loud to a 100 watt RMS amp making the same.

My concern about the JL Audios you mentioned was efficiency. They spec to 91 db. The Kappas spec to 95 db. Simply put, the Kappas would put about the same clean volume that JL Audios would using much less output of any given amp. Of course, whichever sound better is up your ear.

Sorry to rant, but I do love me some car/bike audio.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
No need to apologize. Audio is definitely not my strong suit, and its pretty stressful trying to piece all this together and see the price tag, all the while worrying if it will be as good as I'm hoping! After talking to you and a few other folks on the road glide forum, here's where I'm at now. Feel free to tear me apart.

JVC KD-R85MBS Head Unit. Pushes out 4.5V and is Bluetooth. Two main reasons for wanting it.
SoundStream ST4.1000D Amplifier. Small and compact. Pushes out 90x4 at 4ohm and 125x4 at 2 ohm

Now for speakers, I've been looking at the kappa 62.11i. I honestly don't know the difference between 2 and 4 ohm ratings though. I know the kappas are 2 ohm, have 75 RMS with a peak of 225. If I were to go 2ohm, I think I'd go with those because you are not the first who has great things to say about them. I know they would fit the front, but what about the rear? I noticed you mentioned kappa 5.25, but I have no experience with nor have I seen them mentioned before! Would 4ohm be any better or is there a benefit/downside to 4ohm speakers? Thanks for all your help!
 

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No need to apologize. Audio is definitely not my strong suit, and its pretty stressful trying to piece all this together and see the price tag, all the while worrying if it will be as good as I'm hoping! After talking to you and a few other folks on the road glide forum, here's where I'm at now. Feel free to tear me apart.

JVC KD-R85MBS Head Unit. Pushes out 4.5V and is Bluetooth. Two main reasons for wanting it.
SoundStream ST4.1000D Amplifier. Small and compact. Pushes out 90x4 at 4ohm and 125x4 at 2 ohm

Now for speakers, I've been looking at the kappa 62.11i. I honestly don't know the difference between 2 and 4 ohm ratings though. I know the kappas are 2 ohm, have 75 RMS with a peak of 225. If I were to go 2ohm, I think I'd go with those because you are not the first who has great things to say about them. I know they would fit the front, but what about the rear? I noticed you mentioned kappa 5.25, but I have no experience with nor have I seen them mentioned before! Would 4ohm be any better or is there a benefit/downside to 4ohm speakers? Thanks for all your help!
The preamp voltage output is not as important as many seem to want to make it out to be. As long the the amp is wired correctly and is of generally good quality, it's going to manage fine with any good head unit. You just have to set the gains correctly. Higher voltage CAN help with preventing noise, but with the very short RCAs and grounds of an MC install, you shouldn't have noise issues. Further, you probably wouldn't hear it anyway in an MC application.

I say that only to say that you should buy the one that has the overall sound, look and features that you want, and not worry about the output Voltage. I'd be more inclined to want an Alpine or Pioneer with 2V output over some of the other brands only because they are tanks for the most part, sound very good and are going to offer about all of the newest features. I used to be a HUGE Eclipse fan, but they don't make them anymore.

As for speakers, the ohm rating has no impact on the sound. It's simply the resistance of the voice coil. It's no different than another other resistor. The lower ohm load just allows current to flow more easily. If you decide on 5.25 for the back, I might select 4 ohm only because those Kappas are only rated about 60W RMS.

You couldn't fit 6.5" Kappa drivers in the rear TP pods without an adaptor ring. But, they make them for the rear as well.

Another really decent speaker that is very affordable is the Polk Audio DB651. They handle a little less power, but they sound good and have a marine rating. I've heard that the shallow mount versions will go in the rear TP pods without a ring.
 
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