Bass distortion help

kevin.gt

CarAudio.com Newbie
I have a horrible stock, base stereo in my '22 bronco. I've swapped the 4" dash speakers with 4" kicker ks and added cheap 0-300hz bass blockers. I've had it like that for a couple months or so and it was somewhat improved over stock. Very recently I've noticed a lot of distortion/buzzing at lower frequencies even with moderate/low volume from the head unit (no amp). I removed the grill and unmounted the speaker to make sure it wasn't just something in the dash rattling. Still horrible.

My question: what's the distortion? speakers damaged? did I just not notice it at first and this is expected from 4"? should I try different bass blockers, or removing them all together?

20 second sound clip shared here
 

1aespinoza

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My question: what's the distortion? speakers damaged? did I just not notice it at first and this is expected from 4"? should I try different bass blockers, or removing them all together?
Easy test is to reinstall the OEM speakers. If you trashed them, try installing the Kickers to a different source. A couple of weeks ago, I benched a pair of 6.5 components and one sounded exactly like yours. After testing it turned out the amp has a bad channel.
 

audiobaun

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What Ohm load were the originals? Should say on the back or you can Google the Identification on the back to get the info on them. May be 2 ohm? kicker speakers havent really been made all that great these days. They still make Great Tweeters and amps, some subs. You may have blown those if you introduced a great amount of low frequencies. id pull them and check with a DMM see if they are still acceptable Ohm value. What Blockers did you use? Have a Link??
 

kevin.gt

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What Ohm load were the originals? Should say on the back or you can Google the Identification on the back to get the info on them. May be 2 ohm? kicker speakers havent really been made all that great these days. They still make Great Tweeters and amps, some subs. You may have blown those if you introduced a great amount of low frequencies. id pull them and check with a DMM see if they are still acceptable Ohm value. What Blockers did you use? Have a Link??
Originals and the kickers are all 4 ohm. using the skar bass blockers from Amazon (https://a.co/d/hPtxviK). I removed the bass blocker and that did not improve anything, maybe got worse. I swapped the factory speaker back in and it does not have the distortion, but it also has no bass from the dash. I believe it may have an in-line bass blockers (not sure what frequency). I’m kind of surprised if they are blown some how. I don’t listen loud and had 300 Hz blockers in place for a bit. The kickers are rated for twice the power as the oem and I have not yet gotten an amp. 🤷
 
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kevin.gt

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id pull them and check with a DMM see if they are still acceptable Ohm value
seems fine. multimeter reading 3.7 for the 4 ohm speaker. someone on the bronco forum suggested perhaps the head unit is clipping? evidentially, the stock speakers are more sensitive than the kickers, so perhaps a volume of 15 (half way up) is higher than I'm realizing. does that seem like a reasonable explanation?
 
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Jimi77

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seems fine. multimeter reading 3.7 for the 4 ohm speaker. someone on the bronco forum suggested perhaps the head unit is clipping? evidentially, the stock speakers are more sensitive than the kickers, so perhaps a volume of 15 (half way up) is higher than I'm realizing. does that seem like a reasonable explanation?
If you have bass cranked and loudness on, that can lead to clipping at low volumes.
 

kevin.gt

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If you have bass cranked and loudness on, that can lead to clipping at low volumes.
so that's the thing. I haven't had it above half way and keep the bass turned down in the tone settings because the stock system is so bad. Really confused and hope to be able to try these speakers in another car soon to see if they are damaged or if the head unit is sending an awful signal
 

kevin.gt

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Question.. could it be the polarity is wrong? I wouldn’t expect the highs to sound as good as they do but I don’t really have much experience. I’m using a harness from Amazon and reading old reviews of the harness, I’m seeing some people say the positive and negative are switched
 

deez283

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Question.. could it be the polarity is wrong? I wouldn’t expect the highs to sound as good as they do but I don’t really have much experience. I’m using a harness from Amazon and reading old reviews of the harness, I’m seeing some people say the positive and negative are switched
Only way to know would be to switch the wires and see if there is improvement.
 
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audiobaun

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seems fine. multimeter reading 3.7 for the 4 ohm speaker. someone on the bronco forum suggested perhaps the head unit is clipping? evidentially, the stock speakers are more sensitive than the kickers, so perhaps a volume of 15 (half way up) is higher than I'm realizing. does that seem like a reasonable explanation?
Did you install the Bass blockers in the proper Direction??Most have Arrows on the wiring or an Arrow to be directed towards the Poss Post to the speaker.
 

kevin.gt

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Only way to know would be to switch the wires and see if there is improvement.
Got a wiring diagram of stock wires and yes harness I used inverted the wires. Flipping the wires didn’t help the distortion though. I guess the bass blockers weren’t doing anything before since they wouldn’t have been on the positive line.

Did you install the Bass blockers in the proper Direction??Most have Arrows on the wiring or an Arrow to be directed towards the Poss Post to the speaker.
There are no markings for direction. I’m assuming they are non-polarized capacitors and direction doesn’t matter
 

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