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H2oskier13

New boat, need stereo help

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H2oskier13

Hi.

I just traded off my Ski Nautique on a 2006 Response LXI. I will be picking the boat up next month and would like to do some stereo upgrades before I start using the boat. I am going to be reusing some of the components from my old boat. I have a 2 channel amp to power my 2 10" subs and a 4 channel amp for my speakers. I will be getting a new head unit this spring and I would like to add a second set of tower speakers and replace the cabin speakers in the fall. My question is does everyone run their tower speakers through a dedicated amp? If so will I be able to get a head unit with 3 pre-outs to run all 3 amps? Or would I be better to run my cabin speakers off of the head unit and use the 4 channel amp for the tower speakers?

Any info would be great as I have never dealt with tower speakers before.

Thanks.

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nuttyskier2002

H2o, You've come to the right place to get advice on your sound system install. Most here will agree that you do need a separate amp for the tower speakers especially if you are going to run 2 pair of tower speakers. Some even run each tower channel on it's own separate amp. Of course power demand of the speakers will dictate. I have the JL HD600.4 bridged running 1 pair of WS Rev 10's.

You will run into much discussion about running 2 10" subs as opposed to 1 12" or even 15" sub in a properly sized ported box custom built to fit under the helm. This is what most here favor.

There are plenty of head units available to have 3 pair of RCA's out. Usually one pair is dedicated to the sub. one pair is the front zone and the 3rd pair for the rear zone. Selection of a head unit is all about personal preference and what you are willing to pay for. A word of advice though......if you are ever going to add more amps......choose a HU that puts out 4 - 5 volts RMS (max volume) as opposed to 2 volts RMS. This will mean less noise if you ever need to split the output to feed more than one channel. Also if you find one that has an EQ and it's own onboard audio processor even better. I chose the Pionner DEH-80PRS. It's not a marine unit but it's in the arm rest (covered) and my boat is trailered and not used in salt water. What ever you do.....stay away from the Alpine 9886M. This unit is years behind and the audio processor is sold separately. You just don't get your money's worth with this unit. I had one for 3 years. The best upgrade I ever did was getting rid of it.

Another word of advice is don't buy anything with listening to it first. And keep expandability in mind because once you get started with your sound sytem you will always want to add to. Ask anyone here. Hope this helps!

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Earmark Marine

"Or would I be better to run my cabin speakers off of the head unit and use the 4 channel amp for the tower speakers?"

H2,

Source units if rated by the same standards as an honestly rated external amplifier would only be about 15 watts per channel max. That will not be enough to overcome the exhaust and wind noise when underway.

Any low-passed subwoofer played in isolation will sound drunk and soggy. Test this out. In order to have any degree of pitch, you will be very dependent on the contribution and integration from the midbass of the in-boat coaxials. If those collective coaxials cannot keep pace, the woofers begin to sound boomy and muddy, approaching the way they sound in isolation. With dual 10"s, you will need even more capacity from your in-boat coaxials, to not only have balance, but also to have good bass tonal qualities. Gotta have a good sized high-passed external amplifier on the cabin speakers.

David

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Nitrousbird

It also helps to know what kind of speakers you will be pushing. The needs of a REV10 are VERY different than the needs of a cheapy coax in a can, for example. Where one amp may be overkill for one setup it may not be close to sufficient for another.

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Dave K

Hi H2O,

I sent you a PM..

What kind of equipment do you have now, what do you want to re-use, and the most difficult thing of all budget. Everyone could come up with 100 different scenarios for stereos, and 100 opinions, but I think budget is the place to start.

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