1. Welcome to Tacoma World!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all Tacoma discussion topics
    • Communicate privately with other Tacoma owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

Audio upgrade help

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by neverstuck, Aug 17, 2014.

  1. Aug 17, 2014 at 3:16 PM
    #1
    neverstuck

    neverstuck [OP] Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2009
    Member:
    #22406
    Messages:
    2,348
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Matt
    Vancouver Island
    Vehicle:
    13 DCLB sport
    slide-in camper, OME Nitros w 884's and Dakars, Michelin A/T2, Pro EFX heated towing mirrors, Timbren HD bumpstops, KB VooDoo bed rails and tailgate cap, ImMrYo rvm bracket, G-Tek Fab door sill protectors, Ultragauge, window visors, hood deflector, Wet Okole seatcovers, in-vehicle safe.
    I have a 2013 dclb trd sport. I love the touchscreen system and don't want to change it but I want a better, and louder system. I'm not talking about adding in subs so I can be that guy at the intersection sharing his music with everyone around him, but I am used to driving nice vehicles for work with stock sound systems that kick pretty hard compared to mine (like the 2014 ram sport for instance). I don't want to spend much money on upgrades and I don't want to swap out my head unit. If I spend a few hundred on speakers will I see a noticeable improvement or should I just settle for what I've got it I'm not willing to swap out the head unit or trade in my back seat storage for carpeted speaker boxes?

    Thanks very much for any feedback.
     
  2. Aug 19, 2014 at 12:03 PM
    #2
    Aw9d

    Aw9d That one guy

    Joined:
    Nov 7, 2011
    Member:
    #66635
    Messages:
    18,582
    Gender:
    Male
    Az
    The problem with the Taco's sound system is the following:

    Crap speakers
    Crap Head Unit

    Buying better speakers and running them off the stock HU is just like polishing a turd. It will be better, but still its a crap signal coming out of the HU. Plus the HU pushes very little power so you need to go with lower powered speakers.

    Honestly, swapping out the HU and keeping the stock speakers will sound better than swapping out the stock speakers and keeping the stock HU. Since you don't want to swap out the HU and don't want to spend much go with some 'ok' speakers and it will sound better than the stock speakers. Don't spend too much unless you are planning on adding an amp and an LOC.
     
  3. Aug 19, 2014 at 1:16 PM
    #3
    adrenalnjunky

    adrenalnjunky Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2014
    Member:
    #135728
    Messages:
    1,251
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    West Monroe, Louisiana
    Vehicle:
    07 PreRunner SR5 DCSB
    billie 5100's front @ .85"
    ^agreed. I just did exactly that and the stock speakers sound a lot better with a little more power to them from a stronger deck. They still break up when you get over about half volume. have you seen the magnet on the stock 6x9 - I can't imagine them controlling anything, even if they're neo mag speakers.
     
  4. Aug 20, 2014 at 3:34 PM
    #4
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
    I had the same issue with my stock HU in my 2014. I loved how it worked overall, but the sound was less than impressive. So, I started by replacing the speakers and went with JBL GTO938 speakers in the front and JBL GTO 638 speakers in the rear, as per a suggestion from someone on this forum. The sound was much improved over stock. The stock speakers really are amazingly crappy. I was almost where I wanted to be but decided to stick a small amp (Alpine KTP-445U) in the glove box. I used two Metra Toyota wiring harnesses (males and females) to connect everything and never had to splice a single wire, although I did run the power for the amp straight to the battery. My system really sounds good now and I'm pretty impressed. The nice thing is I only have about $300 in all the improvements, so the upgrade was very cost effective.
     
  5. Aug 20, 2014 at 7:51 PM
    #5
    TRDh4vok

    TRDh4vok Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jun 7, 2014
    Member:
    #131462
    Messages:
    134
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Gil
    Palm Beach County
    Vehicle:
    '09 TRD PreRunner Sport
    -4" MaxTrac Spindle lift -5100 RCD Bilstein's -1/2" Strut Spacer driver's side (Taco Lean fix) -1/4" Strut Spacer passenger side (Taco Lean fix) -4" Tapered Blocks -Extended length U bolts -Front Skid Plate -Exhaust Tip -Tube Steps - Silver -Bed Extender -LEER Tonneau Cover -Rampage Roof Cab Lights -Rampage Tailgate Light Bar Six Function SUPERBRITE with Reverse Lights, Running Lights, Brake lights, Emergency Hazard and L & R turn signals -exLED Toyota Tacoma Custom interior LED Light Kit -PIAA Xtreme White Plus head lights and fog lights -NITTO Terra Grapplers 285-70-17 -30" Avec CR-Series Led Light Bar in bumper grill -Two 6.5" Led light bar's attached to the A pillars -Hood hinge bracket mounts from Famous Fabrications -Exhaust muffler Aero Turbine AT2525XL -OEM Roof Racks -OTTRAW Rocker switch -Stant locking gas cap -Large T emblem and mid mount bracket from Diaz Fabrications
    Anyone got any info on if the 2014 head unit will work in and 2009? Thanks
     
  6. Aug 20, 2014 at 7:56 PM
    #6
    BORNWILDGUY

    BORNWILDGUY Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2012
    Member:
    #77942
    Messages:
    2,430
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rich
    Florida
    Vehicle:
    2012 Lifted Tacoma Doublecab (SOLD)
    4" zone offroad suspension lift modified with Rcd bilstein front shocks w 1/2 spacer for 5.75" front lift and allpro expo leap pack with 2" block for 6" rear lift, extended length stainless brake lines front and rear, beefed taco carrier bearing drop brkt, 1.25 alum driveshaft spacer, avid lightbar powdercoated w 2 9" led lights, , amp research power steps, anderson aluminum drop hitch, ss grill insert w color matched grill, color matched door handles, color matched rear bumper, color matched pop n lock tailgate handle, 2012 sport mirrors added, color matched mustang hood scoop, borla ss exhaust, extang full tilt tonneau cover, windows tinted darker,oem roof rack, 2014 touch screen radio w navigation, infinity kappa speakers front and rear, rockford fosgate amp, 2 10" kicker subs, 2tone katzkin leather, hydro dipped interior parts, inalfa 925 power moonroof, lexus F sport shift knob
    I run a 2014 stock nav unit in mine and updated the front and rear door speakers with infinity kappa's. I also added a line out converter, Rockford fosgate amp and 2 10" kicker subs in a custom box behind the rear seat and am very pleased with the sound.
     
  7. Aug 26, 2014 at 6:17 PM
    #7
    DriftDreamzSS

    DriftDreamzSS Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Member:
    #135039
    Messages:
    198
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Matt
    Ventura County
    Vehicle:
    '14 TRD Sport PreRunner
    How does the amp get signal? I talked to my local stereo shop about this very setup and they said a line out converter was a must and that supplying the amp with anything but RCA's from the LOC was going to result in crappy sound. I really dont want to add extra junk that I dont need tho, speakers and maybe that small amp only would be ideal for me. Also, did you just disconnect the factory tweeter in the front or wire it in with those new jbl gto speakers or what?
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2014
  8. Aug 26, 2014 at 8:17 PM
    #8
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
    I simply cut the RCA's off and crimped the wires together. There is a switch on the bottom of the amp that you can toggle for either RCA connections or speaker level connections. Here's the amp overview from Alpine:

    http://www.alpine-usa.com/product/view/ktp-445u

    Note this paragraph:

    "Configurable Inputs

    Need configurable options for Speaker-Level or RCA inputs to the Power Pack? On the bottom panel of the Power Pack there are selectable input options to accommodate Speaker-Level (0.5V-10V) or RCA (0.2V – 4V) inputs. Selectable 2 Channel and 4 Channel options give you the control to determine source inputs, and can eliminate the need for Y-adapters."


    Also, here's the install manual for your viewing pleasure :)

    http://a248.e.akamai.net/pix.crutchfield.com/Manuals/500/500KTP445U.PDF
     
  9. Aug 26, 2014 at 8:34 PM
    #9
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
    I forgot to answer your second question - I just left the tweeter intact. I honestly don't notice it at all and the system is so easily adjustable that it isn't an issue.

    The system really does sound good and I didn't have to drill a hole or splice a wire. I attached the amp to the inside of the glovebox with a big piece of velcro and ran the wires over the top of the back of the box and to the radio. The only thing you'll have to get for the speakers are adapters to put between the doors and the new speakers. I made mine but ********* sells either wood or plastic adapters pretty reasonably.

    Link - http://shop.*********.com/2005-2013-Tacoma-Speaker-Installation-Products_c9.htm
     
  10. Aug 26, 2014 at 9:31 PM
    #10
    DriftDreamzSS

    DriftDreamzSS Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2014
    Member:
    #135039
    Messages:
    198
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Matt
    Ventura County
    Vehicle:
    '14 TRD Sport PreRunner
    Cool, got a link for the metro harness you used to avoid cutting or splicing b the factory harness?
     
  11. Aug 26, 2014 at 9:54 PM
    #11
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
  12. Aug 28, 2014 at 12:56 PM
    #12
    PMDclassics

    PMDclassics Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 2, 2014
    Member:
    #128961
    Messages:
    65
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Todd
    Bismarck
    Vehicle:
    TRD Sport
    Good thread here. I am probably the one that recommended the JBL GTO speakers and so far that is all I upgraded on my 2014 Entunes system. Now that they are broke in they sound very good. I did add some sound proofing to the doors not sure how much it helped. I think I will take a stab at adding an amp....thanks for sharing North222

    Is the amp always on being you powered directly to the battery?
     
    Last edited: Aug 28, 2014
  13. Aug 28, 2014 at 3:30 PM
    #13
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male



    Yes, I'm certain you are the one that suggested the JBL's - and thank you! They are great speakers, especially when given a little extra power. The system is now good to my ears...so to speak. I no longer cringe when a crank up a tune, which is now possible, BTW.

    Regarding the power, I believe that the amp senses a signal and turns itself on. It seems that I read that in the manual. I know that when the truck hasn't been on the amp is completely cool to the touch and when the stereo's on it is warmer, but not much. Great little amp for not a lot of money!
     
  14. Sep 7, 2014 at 8:02 PM
    #14
    North222

    North222 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Feb 4, 2014
    Member:
    #122307
    Messages:
    176
    Gender:
    Male
    FYI, (update) I just added a set of these today to round out the sound -

    http://www.jbl.com/estore/jbl/us/products/GTO18T/GTO18T_JBL_US

    I now have JBL GTO's all around, paired with the small amp. These tweeters made a really nice addition. I was surprised! The factory tweeters really are about as bad as the other speakers, apparently. I think my system is really sounding good, better than I would have thought, given the relatively small expense in upgrades. I'm happy with the sound and think I'm done tweaking.:)
     
  15. Sep 8, 2014 at 5:46 AM
    #15
    adrenalnjunky

    adrenalnjunky Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2014
    Member:
    #135728
    Messages:
    1,251
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    West Monroe, Louisiana
    Vehicle:
    07 PreRunner SR5 DCSB
    billie 5100's front @ .85"

Products Discussed in

To Top