View Full Version : Hello, hope some advice about component speakers for factory radio

12-16-2013, 10:58 PM
Hi all

Im new here.

I just bought a Civic coupé 2010, it comes with a factory cd player and factory speakers.

This car comes with a so called Premium Audio System which includes a small amplifier and 7 speakers, it is, four 6.5" plus one subwoofer plus two tweeters.

Im not audiophile so for my ears it sounds pretty good as is, really

After thinking so much I decided to upgrade only the speakers

Ok, a few weeks ago I got a pair of pioneer coaxials with dome tweeter for rear installation

They made a big difference, sound is great and I can hear highs in a very crystal-like smooth sound

Now, after much thinking Im going for front speakers but I don't want coaxials, but rather component speakers

So Im offered these ones:

Sony Xplōd XS-GTX1622S which come with dome tweeters

Sony XplMd™ XS-GTX1622S GTX Series 6-1/2" component speaker system at Crutchfield.com (http://www.crutchfield.com/S-FB3dOrCXvvM/p_158GT1622S/Sony-Xpl-d-XS-GTX1622S.html)

As an alternative, Im offered a Focal component system similar but it is obviously more than USD$50 more expensive. Can't remember the name or designation number for the Focals but they come with a pair of cone tweeters

Now, Im not audiophile but I know Focal is way better than Sony, we all know that, but...

The guy offering me the Focal component told me that if Im not going to upgrade my factory radio, he recommends me the Sony ones because Focal component will need a much better radio and much better amplifier to deliver its optimum

He told me like this "your radio is cheap factory, so keep it with inexpensive speakers such as Sony which are better than cheap factory speakers. Otherwise, Focal would be a waste and you run the risk of doing some damage as a result of underpowering your Focal speaker system"

Also, he mentioned that the Sony system brings a soft dome tweeter which is more appropriate for surface installation as the Honda Civic demands it, as Im going to install tweeters in their original factory place as I don't want to drill hole into my car. He told me Focal is way better but they come with cone tweeters and to get the best out of them I would need to install them outside of the factory place and he suggested me to install them at ear level. Well, I don't want that.

Ok, need your advice and keep in mind my target is to get something better than stock speakers as Im absolutely convinced I don't ever want to upgrade my factory radio/cd player. So im not looking for top gear, just better than factory.

The Sony, I know they have bad reputation, but they can't be worse than factory right?

The Focal, I know they are top gear and for 50 more, they sound as a great deal, but then if the cone tweeter wont deliver the highs because it will be surface mounted?

In my experience with the Pioneers I have installed as rear speakers, the dome tweeter is great, those tweeters do really make a big difference and the guy told me "that's because they are dome tweeters, with cone tweeters you wont get the same effect unless you install them at ear level pointing a bit towards your face"

This guy, basically told me that given my factory radio and factory amplifier, the Focal system wont do much better than Sony. He told me you have pioneer as rear speakers, well, Sony is about the same quality as pioneer so you wont get disappointed if that's all you want like a "pioneer quality" speaker

Ok, what's your overall opinion?

Thanks all!!

Side Show
12-16-2013, 11:07 PM
I'd say pioneer and sony are nothing alike.... both brands do base model equipment all the way upto pro audio equipment. best way of choosing your speakers is to have a listen to them on a sound board run only by a headunit (not amped)

replacing factory speakers with after-market speakers will not always give you an improvement (most times it doesn't).

putting an amp in your car will give you an improvement on the standard speakers, then replace the other

get on pioneers website and buy a set of splits in the same series as the coax that you have brought

12-21-2013, 02:02 AM

In case you are interested, I finally decided for Sony speakers. hahaha, I know you are gonna stop reading at this point :D

I can't blame you!

Ok, much to my surprise, they sound really good, they are well beyond what I expected

First, tweeters deliver beautiful highs, soft and with no distortion as far as I can hear

Second, bass is really solid, no distortion, loud, clear.

Ok, you may rightly say "this guy has never listened to real high end gear, so he should wait, listen, compare and finally write an informed opinion"

And I admit it, as for the most part you are all right, as my experience with high end stuff is very limited

I know a guy (not really a friend of mine) with a Blaupunkt stereo, focal and infinity speakers/components, tweeters and subwoofers, I don't know what amp, crossovers and capacitors but Im sure he has a good deal of money into it. Obviously his car sounds just nothing less but amazing!

But in my humble opinion, I have nothing to envy as Im quite happy with my basic gear. Well, we have different music tastes and to be honest I have seldom been into his car as to objectively make a comparison. And obviously we have different cars. (He has a Jetta 2011)

Ok, just to give a clue, the following music sounds just great in my car with these cheap Sony components (for testing purposes, I pushed fad all the way to front speakers as I have my Sony as front speakers, so rear coax Pioneers and cheap factory subwoofer were all totally silent):

Pop/Rock/Hard rock

Following songs, you can really listen separate instuments, voices, very little or no distortion, deep bass, believe me, really solid bass (my doors tremble but with no distortion) and I was not at full volume:

1) Scorpion's "Fly to the rainbow" album sounds great (MP3 file @ 192 kbps)
2) Deep Purple "Machine head" remastered album (MP3 file @ 192 kbps)
3) UFO "Phenomenon" (MP3 file @ 192 kbps)
4) Mike Oldfield "Five miles out" album (MP3 file @ 192 kbps)
5)Friday night at San Francisco with Paco de Lucia, John McLaughlin and Al Di Meola (MP3 file @ 192 kbps) I believe this one was a tough test for my cheap Sony components as it is basically acoustic guitars. So you can hear when one guitar plays joining the other two, then stops, etc, basic finger "mistakes" or "rough" tricks with the fingers
6) Ace of Base, several songs from different albums (MP3 file @ 192 kbps). These kind of songs sound great as there are deep bass and high metallic cymbals combined with soft vocals. You can hear them all with no distortion.

As I also enjoy classical music, I guess Opera music is a tough test for speakers, so these cheap Sony performed great, specially for high pitched soprano voices which are backed by orchestra's drums and cellos and bass, kind of huge dynamic range. Just to give a clue:

1) "O mio babbino caro" sung by Anna Netrebko, this was a really tough test for speakers but no distortion at the high ends, delivering really nice vocals even when she is singing out loud!
2) "Casta diva" sung by Renee Fleming, really, amazing, her voice, everything.

Ok, but the ultimate test is to see for how long these cheap speakers keep going strong... Time will tell!!

(pd: I did not remove the factory tweeters that come with civic, I let them in their original placement. Then added the Sony tweeters...)

12-23-2013, 04:10 AM
If you like it, that's all that matters