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Thinking about the Alpine PSU-300TCM...?

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by DaBigDogg, Jul 7, 2020.

  1. Jul 7, 2020 at 3:03 AM
    #1
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg [OP] "Say when..."

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    So I decided I think I want to try the Alpine factory upgrade. Looking for some input regarding adding an amp to the factory HU without DSP though. From what I see the KTP-445U amp does run 45W x 4 but doesn't add any signal processing...my question is: how bad will the factory HU attenuate bass frequencies at higher volumes?

    Now I figure with the additional power, the HU shouldn't have to attenuate much as the volume levels will be lower accordingly as the amplifier will...well amplify lol. I'm not looking to spend $1500 on a whole replacement HU just to do this if I don't have to. I'm hoping for doing the PSU-300 plus replacement speakers for the doors should be under $1K especially if I do the install myself.

    Any thoughts or ideas would be appreciated; thanks TW!
     
  2. Jul 7, 2020 at 3:13 AM
    #2
    Frankenstuff

    Frankenstuff Busy iracing

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  3. Jul 7, 2020 at 9:33 AM
    #3
    Frankenstuff

    Frankenstuff Busy iracing

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    If you decide to go through with it post up. I’m sure confirmed options will help someone else out and people are always checking TW to give a little piece of mind before taking the jump .
     
    DaBigDogg [OP] likes this.
  4. Jul 7, 2020 at 10:18 AM
    #4
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg [OP] "Say when..."

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    Honesty I might pull the trigger...it’s gotta be better than stock and cheaper than other “prebuilt” solutions. Worst case i guess I could always try to return it lol.
     
  5. Jul 7, 2020 at 10:35 AM
    #5
    daveeasa

    daveeasa Slowest crimp in the West

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    So, #750-$800 gets you a powered sub, 4 channel amp, remote bass knob, and plug-and-play. At that price I'd say it's in the realm of appropriately priced. For me, it feels on the pricey side given that a nice standalone 4 channel amp (so many to choose from) can be had for $300-$400, or a 5 channel for a bit more than that, of course lots of flexibility on that based on specifics. And yes, you'd need line level converters and a turn on lead, rca's, etc so that adds some cost. I'd imagine this sub is nothing special, you _likely_ can beat it with a decent driver, mdf box, some carpet, and your choice of mounting location but it's also clean and the plug and play value is not to be ignored.

    To me, the majority of the decision on audio for the Tacoma boils down to two primary things:

    1. Subwoofer selection. Given the limited options and limited interior space, this seems like the most important initial decision. I like the enclosures OEM Audio is making, but I'd probably prefer something which completely replaces the cargo box rather than sits inside it. I also like the JL Audio stealthbox. I haven't yet made this decision for myself. Last, a 8' bandpass sub in the center console seems almost possible with a ton of work (I did a bp 12 in my '97 F150 and it was awesome) but I'm going to assume that's out of the question. I don't know that I much like the idea of a sub under the seat but I guess I've never had one there.

    2. Amp location. This closely relates to choice 1 and has the added complication of needing reasonable ventilation. The Alpine unit adds solid value in this department. You could always hide 1-2 amps behind the rear seats but then you have to actively address airflow with fans and that can add noise. Under the seat is the most obvious choice and then you're limited by form factor if you want full seat slider use. Also of concern is potential for spilling stuff, so driver's seat is a little safer for this than passenger if you are the primary driver. I think it'd be possible to fabricate a bracket (this would be a cool accessory, under-seat amp bracket for passenger and driver seats with mesh or perforations for aiding ventilation) which could work for any small-ish form factor amp.

    For the Alpine specifically, the sub seems like it'd underwhelm, the amp is probably fine but so small it's not quite at the level to justify the price tag, and the most valuable design aspects are plug-and-play and the under-seat bracket. If someone sold just the bracket and a plug-and-play harness with line level converters ending in a block with rca's and a turn on lead, I'd pay up to $200 just for that Would I pay an extra $600 for the amp and sub? Most likely no.

    Buuut, if you have a way to get it for less than $600 it gets a bit more interesting. My price point for what I see would be more like $400-$500 and I suspect it'd start the slippery slope of audio upgrades rather than end it.
     
  6. Feb 13, 2021 at 1:34 PM
    #6
    Shayne

    Shayne Well-Known Member

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    did this happen?
     
  7. Feb 13, 2021 at 2:15 PM
    #7
    destin_meeks

    destin_meeks I used to fix people's crappy stereos

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    I added a 5ch amp with no DSP to my factory head unit and ran that for over 2 years. It honestly was good enough. Most people would be happy with it.
     
  8. Feb 13, 2021 at 6:48 PM
    #8
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg [OP] "Say when..."

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    I ended up pulling the trigger last year...around august for my birthday. Overall, It's pretty decent for what it is. However, I still have to upgrade the speakers themselves and the kit has the added bonus of being compatible with an aftermarket head unit if I wanted to upgrade that too. For what it is I'd say it's good...but sometimes the bass is lacking even with the 120W unit so if big booms are your goal, you might wanna go a different route.
     
  9. Feb 13, 2021 at 6:51 PM
    #9
    destin_meeks

    destin_meeks I used to fix people's crappy stereos

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    Yeah unfortunately an 8” in a super small enclosure can only do so much.
     
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  10. Feb 13, 2021 at 6:54 PM
    #10
    DaBigDogg

    DaBigDogg [OP] "Say when..."

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    Indeed. My only real regret is not auditioning the OEM Audio all in one beforehand...realistically I can only compare this set up to my previous component systems and obviously those were much more built out (2x 12's etc.).
     

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