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View Full Version : pros and cons of component speakers



luvinthebass
12-25-2007, 05:51 PM
i have never used component speakers before i have always gone the 2 way or 3 way coaxial route, but imaging has always ****** especially with my front stage and my left front speaker in the door panel. i wuld like to know the pro's and con's of component speakers, i am interested in tryin some out and good brands as well, thanks.

helotaxi
12-25-2007, 06:36 PM
Pros-usually higher quality drivers, better crossovers, mid and tweet can be mounted and aimed separately for better imaging and staging

cons- slightly move involved install, you have to find somewhere to mount the crossover

xtremekustomz
12-25-2007, 06:37 PM
Well first of all without any time correction or eq controls imaging isn't going to be good no matter what you put in there. Pathlengths need to be minimized to start with and doors aren't the way to go. You usually want your midrange and tweet to be as close as possible but you can get away with putting tweets in the a pillars to raise sound stage but you are still going need to be able to tune. Installation is most important here. What kind of price range are you willing to spend on your component sets?

luvinthebass
12-25-2007, 06:45 PM
bout $100 on a set

SQL4Life
12-26-2007, 12:44 AM
also if your stock speakers don't have tweeters you gotta drill a hole somewhere in the door to stick the tweeter in.

helotaxi
12-26-2007, 02:08 PM
Well first of all without any time correction or eq controls imaging isn't going to be good no matter what you put in there.

BS. There were excellent sounding systems before the technology to do time alignment was out there. Placement and aiming will have a much larger effect than the time alignment bnd-aid ever will. An EQ can help tonality but not the image. Good speakers, well installed, need minimal EQ attention anyway. The install is about 90%+ of the SQ equation. The last 10% is perfecting it with processing. No amount of processing will fix a marginal install.

tcguy85
12-26-2007, 02:21 PM
BS. There were excellent sounding systems before the technology to do time alignment was out there. Placement and aiming will have a much larger effect than the time alignment bnd-aid ever will. An EQ can help tonality but not the image. Good speakers, well installed, need minimal EQ attention anyway. The install is about 90%+ of the SQ equation. The last 10% is perfecting it with processing. No amount of processing will fix a marginal install.

X2! t/a and dsp are good and all but the install is the most important part.

xtremekustomz
12-26-2007, 07:22 PM
BS. There were excellent sounding systems before the technology to do time alignment was out there. Placement and aiming will have a much larger effect than the time alignment bnd-aid ever will. An EQ can help tonality but not the image. Good speakers, well installed, need minimal EQ attention anyway. The install is about 90%+ of the SQ equation. The last 10% is perfecting it with processing. No amount of processing will fix a marginal install.

Did I not say "Installation is most important". I never said that there weren't systems out there that didn't sound good without time alignment. I don't use it in my truck. From what I read it sounded like the guy was going to put the drivers in the doors and that was it. No aiming, or anything like that. As for the statement that an eq cannot help imaging, I have to disagree. This is how I tuned my truck after hours of trying different mounting locations for the drivers and aiming: (Note: I'm not saying to just throw something in the vehicle and this will work)

from cmusic off of elitecaraudio.com

There are several different methods used to tune eqs. This is the one I use. An RTA is not needed if the steps are done correctly. This method uses crossovers and gain settings as the most important factor in tuning. I think the eq should be last in line when tuning. Remember after each step to write down your settings. If the sound gets worse, then you can go back to the previous step’s settings and start over.


1. Set all bands flat, as well as the head unit bass and treble.

2. Turn off the subs. Using music with a good bass line, run the highpass crossover up and down until the midbasses can play as low as possible without any distortion or excessive door panel vibrations.

3. Unhook the mids and tweeters, allowing only the midbasses to play. Listen to mono pink noise or a well-recorded song with a centered vocalist. Test CDs such as the IASCA test CD or Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 will work great. Listen to where the centered sounds are coming from. Then reverse the polarity of one midbass (Reverse the speaker wires coming from the passive crossover and going to the speaker, just flip the positive and negative wires. I usually flip the driver’s side speaker.) and re-listen to the test CD. If the sounds are more centered then keep it as is. If the centered sounds are more diffuse and un-locatable, then flip the polarity back to where it was originally.

4. Then unhook the midbasses and play the mids only and follow the same polarity and listening tests as before. Mark your best settings.

5. Do the same procedure for the tweeters.

6. When you have tested for the proper polarity from all three ranges of speakers, hook all of them back up with respect to each set of speaker’s best polarity. You can have any combination of polarity, such as all the midbass and tweeters straight and one midrange reversed.

7. Now you should have the correct “acoustic” polarity set within each set of speakers. Next is to set the acoustic polarity between the sets of speakers.

8. Listen to some very familiar music with a good range of sounds. Then flip both midbass’ polarity and listen again. Before you only flipped one midbass, now you are doing both at the same time. For example if the left midbass was reversed and the right was not before, now the left will be not reversed and the right will be. Listen to the music again. If the midbass is more powerful and full then leave the wiring as is. If the midbass sounds weaker and wrong then restore the wiring as before.

9. Perform the same listening tests while flipping the mids and tweeters, and use the wiring configuration that sounds the best.

10. If you have went though all these steps adjusting the polarity of the speakers then the system should sound really good without any eq adjustments. You might want to play with the gain adjustments on the crossover and/or amp to better blend all the speakers together.

11. Now onto the eq! The first eq step is to adjust the tonality. While listening to familiar music, adjust each individual band up and down slowly. When the music sounds better then move to the next band. Adjust the left and right bands equally. (We’ll get to the separate left and right adjustments soon.) It really does not matter if the bands are boosted or cut, just that it makes the sound better. Not every band needs to be adjusted. In fact if you did steps 1 thru 10 correctly you should not have to adjust over half the bands. Having a 1/3 octave eq does not mean you have to adjust every band. It means you have the ability to adjust each band if needed. Watch out for big jumps from band to band, like one band set to +4 and the next band set to –6.

12. Continue through all the bands, take a break, and do the same procedure over again. But this time the adjustments will be smaller as you get the tonality dialed in. This step might take several days, weeks, or longer.

13. In tuning you will find some eq bands will raise, lower, move the sound closer, or farther away if adjusted in certain manners. For example, lowering 5 KHz will generally move the soundstage farther away and raising 2 KHz will make the soundstage rise. Each vehicle and system will have different settings that will be the best. The best way to achieve awesome sound is to constantly adjust.

14. When you are satisfied with the tonality of the system, it is time to start adjusting the left and right channels separately. These adjustments should not affect the tonality, but improve on the imaging and soundstaging. Using the Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 “My Disk” listen to the individual frequency pink noise tracks. (Test CD103 has the tracks arranged in an easier configuration.) Each frequency band should sound like it is coming from the center of the soundstage. If one band is off to one side, then use each band’s left and right eq controls as a balance control. This is very similar to the head unit’s balance control, only now you are balancing each frequency band by itself. For example if 200 Hz seems to be shifted to the left of center, lower the left 200 Hz band and raise the right 200 Hz band one dB at a time until the band is centered. If a frequency is shifted to the right, lower the band’s right channel and raise the left channel in small amounts.

15. When you have when through all the bands take a break. Then later go back through each band one by one and make any further needed adjustments until all the frequencies are lined up in the center of the soundstage.

livinlegend
12-26-2007, 09:42 PM
Did I not say "Installation is most important". I never said that there weren't systems out there that didn't sound good without time alignment. I don't use it in my truck. From what I read it sounded like the guy was going to put the drivers in the doors and that was it. No aiming, or anything like that. As for the statement that an eq cannot help imaging, I have to disagree. This is how I tuned my truck after hours of trying different mounting locations for the drivers and aiming: (Note: I'm not saying to just throw something in the vehicle and this will work)

from cmusic off of elitecaraudio.com

There are several different methods used to tune eqs. This is the one I use. An RTA is not needed if the steps are done correctly. This method uses crossovers and gain settings as the most important factor in tuning. I think the eq should be last in line when tuning. Remember after each step to write down your settings. If the sound gets worse, then you can go back to the previous step’s settings and start over.


1. Set all bands flat, as well as the head unit bass and treble.

2. Turn off the subs. Using music with a good bass line, run the highpass crossover up and down until the midbasses can play as low as possible without any distortion or excessive door panel vibrations.

3. Unhook the mids and tweeters, allowing only the midbasses to play. Listen to mono pink noise or a well-recorded song with a centered vocalist. Test CDs such as the IASCA test CD or Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 will work great. Listen to where the centered sounds are coming from. Then reverse the polarity of one midbass (Reverse the speaker wires coming from the passive crossover and going to the speaker, just flip the positive and negative wires. I usually flip the driver’s side speaker.) and re-listen to the test CD. If the sounds are more centered then keep it as is. If the centered sounds are more diffuse and un-locatable, then flip the polarity back to where it was originally.

4. Then unhook the midbasses and play the mids only and follow the same polarity and listening tests as before. Mark your best settings.

5. Do the same procedure for the tweeters.

6. When you have tested for the proper polarity from all three ranges of speakers, hook all of them back up with respect to each set of speaker’s best polarity. You can have any combination of polarity, such as all the midbass and tweeters straight and one midrange reversed.

7. Now you should have the correct “acoustic” polarity set within each set of speakers. Next is to set the acoustic polarity between the sets of speakers.

8. Listen to some very familiar music with a good range of sounds. Then flip both midbass’ polarity and listen again. Before you only flipped one midbass, now you are doing both at the same time. For example if the left midbass was reversed and the right was not before, now the left will be not reversed and the right will be. Listen to the music again. If the midbass is more powerful and full then leave the wiring as is. If the midbass sounds weaker and wrong then restore the wiring as before.

9. Perform the same listening tests while flipping the mids and tweeters, and use the wiring configuration that sounds the best.

10. If you have went though all these steps adjusting the polarity of the speakers then the system should sound really good without any eq adjustments. You might want to play with the gain adjustments on the crossover and/or amp to better blend all the speakers together.

11. Now onto the eq! The first eq step is to adjust the tonality. While listening to familiar music, adjust each individual band up and down slowly. When the music sounds better then move to the next band. Adjust the left and right bands equally. (We’ll get to the separate left and right adjustments soon.) It really does not matter if the bands are boosted or cut, just that it makes the sound better. Not every band needs to be adjusted. In fact if you did steps 1 thru 10 correctly you should not have to adjust over half the bands. Having a 1/3 octave eq does not mean you have to adjust every band. It means you have the ability to adjust each band if needed. Watch out for big jumps from band to band, like one band set to +4 and the next band set to –6.

12. Continue through all the bands, take a break, and do the same procedure over again. But this time the adjustments will be smaller as you get the tonality dialed in. This step might take several days, weeks, or longer.

13. In tuning you will find some eq bands will raise, lower, move the sound closer, or farther away if adjusted in certain manners. For example, lowering 5 KHz will generally move the soundstage farther away and raising 2 KHz will make the soundstage rise. Each vehicle and system will have different settings that will be the best. The best way to achieve awesome sound is to constantly adjust.

14. When you are satisfied with the tonality of the system, it is time to start adjusting the left and right channels separately. These adjustments should not affect the tonality, but improve on the imaging and soundstaging. Using the Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 “My Disk” listen to the individual frequency pink noise tracks. (Test CD103 has the tracks arranged in an easier configuration.) Each frequency band should sound like it is coming from the center of the soundstage. If one band is off to one side, then use each band’s left and right eq controls as a balance control. This is very similar to the head unit’s balance control, only now you are balancing each frequency band by itself. For example if 200 Hz seems to be shifted to the left of center, lower the left 200 Hz band and raise the right 200 Hz band one dB at a time until the band is centered. If a frequency is shifted to the right, lower the band’s right channel and raise the left channel in small amounts.

15. When you have when through all the bands take a break. Then later go back through each band one by one and make any further needed adjustments until all the frequencies are lined up in the center of the soundstage.

quoted so i can find this again and try it

luvinthebass
12-26-2007, 09:44 PM
Did I not say "Installation is most important". I never said that there weren't systems out there that didn't sound good without time alignment. I don't use it in my truck. From what I read it sounded like the guy was going to put the drivers in the doors and that was it. No aiming, or anything like that. As for the statement that an eq cannot help imaging, I have to disagree. This is how I tuned my truck after hours of trying different mounting locations for the drivers and aiming: (Note: I'm not saying to just throw something in the vehicle and this will work)

from cmusic off of elitecaraudio.com

There are several different methods used to tune eqs. This is the one I use. An RTA is not needed if the steps are done correctly. This method uses crossovers and gain settings as the most important factor in tuning. I think the eq should be last in line when tuning. Remember after each step to write down your settings. If the sound gets worse, then you can go back to the previous step’s settings and start over.


1. Set all bands flat, as well as the head unit bass and treble.

2. Turn off the subs. Using music with a good bass line, run the highpass crossover up and down until the midbasses can play as low as possible without any distortion or excessive door panel vibrations.

3. Unhook the mids and tweeters, allowing only the midbasses to play. Listen to mono pink noise or a well-recorded song with a centered vocalist. Test CDs such as the IASCA test CD or Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 will work great. Listen to where the centered sounds are coming from. Then reverse the polarity of one midbass (Reverse the speaker wires coming from the passive crossover and going to the speaker, just flip the positive and negative wires. I usually flip the driver’s side speaker.) and re-listen to the test CD. If the sounds are more centered then keep it as is. If the centered sounds are more diffuse and un-locatable, then flip the polarity back to where it was originally.

4. Then unhook the midbasses and play the mids only and follow the same polarity and listening tests as before. Mark your best settings.

5. Do the same procedure for the tweeters.

6. When you have tested for the proper polarity from all three ranges of speakers, hook all of them back up with respect to each set of speaker’s best polarity. You can have any combination of polarity, such as all the midbass and tweeters straight and one midrange reversed.

7. Now you should have the correct “acoustic” polarity set within each set of speakers. Next is to set the acoustic polarity between the sets of speakers.

8. Listen to some very familiar music with a good range of sounds. Then flip both midbass’ polarity and listen again. Before you only flipped one midbass, now you are doing both at the same time. For example if the left midbass was reversed and the right was not before, now the left will be not reversed and the right will be. Listen to the music again. If the midbass is more powerful and full then leave the wiring as is. If the midbass sounds weaker and wrong then restore the wiring as before.

9. Perform the same listening tests while flipping the mids and tweeters, and use the wiring configuration that sounds the best.

10. If you have went though all these steps adjusting the polarity of the speakers then the system should sound really good without any eq adjustments. You might want to play with the gain adjustments on the crossover and/or amp to better blend all the speakers together.

11. Now onto the eq! The first eq step is to adjust the tonality. While listening to familiar music, adjust each individual band up and down slowly. When the music sounds better then move to the next band. Adjust the left and right bands equally. (We’ll get to the separate left and right adjustments soon.) It really does not matter if the bands are boosted or cut, just that it makes the sound better. Not every band needs to be adjusted. In fact if you did steps 1 thru 10 correctly you should not have to adjust over half the bands. Having a 1/3 octave eq does not mean you have to adjust every band. It means you have the ability to adjust each band if needed. Watch out for big jumps from band to band, like one band set to +4 and the next band set to –6.

12. Continue through all the bands, take a break, and do the same procedure over again. But this time the adjustments will be smaller as you get the tonality dialed in. This step might take several days, weeks, or longer.

13. In tuning you will find some eq bands will raise, lower, move the sound closer, or farther away if adjusted in certain manners. For example, lowering 5 KHz will generally move the soundstage farther away and raising 2 KHz will make the soundstage rise. Each vehicle and system will have different settings that will be the best. The best way to achieve awesome sound is to constantly adjust.

14. When you are satisfied with the tonality of the system, it is time to start adjusting the left and right channels separately. These adjustments should not affect the tonality, but improve on the imaging and soundstaging. Using the Autosound 2000 Test CD 102 or 103 “My Disk” listen to the individual frequency pink noise tracks. (Test CD103 has the tracks arranged in an easier configuration.) Each frequency band should sound like it is coming from the center of the soundstage. If one band is off to one side, then use each band’s left and right eq controls as a balance control. This is very similar to the head unit’s balance control, only now you are balancing each frequency band by itself. For example if 200 Hz seems to be shifted to the left of center, lower the left 200 Hz band and raise the right 200 Hz band one dB at a time until the band is centered. If a frequency is shifted to the right, lower the band’s right channel and raise the left channel in small amounts.

15. When you have when through all the bands take a break. Then later go back through each band one by one and make any further needed adjustments until all the frequencies are lined up in the center of the soundstage.

-prints this off-

tsenfw
12-27-2007, 11:15 AM
I'm not understanding this setup tutorial. If you correctly hooked up your mids and tweets, positive to positive and negative to negative ... why would you reverse the polarity?

xtremekustomz
12-27-2007, 12:23 PM
I'm not understanding this setup tutorial. If you correctly hooked up your mids and tweets, positive to positive and negative to negative ... why would you reverse the polarity?

You do this to get the correct "acoustical" phase. I know in my truck I have both tweets, and the left midrange out of phase and both midbasses and the right tweet in phase. Basically you listen to see what sounds best. Trust me, it works.

tsenfw
12-27-2007, 12:32 PM
ok, i'll try it when I get my components.

helotaxi
12-27-2007, 01:46 PM
Acoustic phase is basically free time alignment. No processor required. Limitation is that there are only two possible settings, in and out. One will almost always sound better than the other. Get it all set up as good as possible before starting to mess around with processing.

luvinthebass
12-28-2007, 07:34 PM
is that why sometimes the other speaker will sound like it's not hittin ur ear just like your other one is cuz of time alignment and polarity issue?

audiolife
12-28-2007, 09:45 PM
talkin about some old school phase jumping mother truckers:D