A client from here in Lehighton recently visited Mobile Edge to ask about upgrading the stereo in his 2021 Tesla Model 3 with a custom subwoofer system. While the stock audio system is adequate for some people, adding a subwoofer adds impact, warmth and emotion to a music-listening experience. As such, subwoofers are a popular upgrade for Tesla owners.
After auditioning several products in the store and discussing how much space we could use in the cargo area, we sketched up a solution that would look and sound great! The client loved our plan and scheduled an appointment so we could perform the installation.
Tesla Subwoofer System
The first step in creating this subwoofer solution was to construct an enclosure for a pair of Audison Prima-Series APS 10 S4S 10-inch subwoofers. We recommended these shallow drivers to keep the enclosure as small as possible while still delivering great bass. As you can see, the enclosure is only a few inches thick.
Next, we started on the first of two trim pieces. We cut a pair of trim rings and affixed them to the front trim panel. Using automotive body filler, we tapered the rings into the surrounding panel to have some dimension and style once wrapped in white vinyl. Carpeted top and bottom panels that follow the curved contour round out the trim attached directly to the enclosure.
The second trim piece adds additional protection to the subwoofers and some style to the system. We created a series of unique accent shapes, then cut them out of the second piece of MDF. The edges of this panel fit up tight against the edges of the cargo area.
We added some depth to the panel by building up the area around the triangles on either side of the center windows. Inserts wrapped in white vinyl fill these spaces, while the remainder of the small openings will have translucent white acrylic plastic inserts.
The icing on the cake for the fabrication was the addition of white LEDs behind the trim panel. These glow through the white plastic and light up the subwoofers. We tied the lighting system into the trunk light wiring, which automatically turns on when the client opens the cargo area.
While we had the trunk apart, we treated the area above the subwoofer with a layer of SoundShield SSD1 sound damping material. This damping will help ensure that there are no buzzes or rattles when the bass is cranked.
Bass System Integration
The client chose an Audison SR 1.500 monoblock amplifier to power the system. This amp is rated to produce 800 watts of power into the 2-ohm load presented by the pair of subs. We used an AudioControl LC2i Line Output converter to extract an audio signal from the factory source unit. This unit provides the Audison amp with a clean audio signal and turns the amplifier on as soon as the factory source unit is on. We added an AudioControl ACR1 remote level control to the converter and mounted it in the front of the vehicle. This knob allows the client to adjust the output level of the subwoofers on the fly to suit the music he’s chosen or his mood. The Audison amp and AudioControl converter are mounted to one of our trademark steel amp racks that is affixed to the back of the subwoofer enclosure. The rack also holds the enclosure securely to the vehicle, so there’s no fear of it moving around while the car is in motion.
The final step in upgrading this Tesla was to install a high-performance FT100 battery from Fullriver Battery. This battery was added to help safely integrate the audio system with the car’s electrical system.
Tesla Model 3 Window Tint
The client asked us to tint the windows of his car with 3M Ceramic IR film. This premium window tint not only looks great but blocks a significant amount of the heat energy from the sun to help keep the interior cool. We tinted the driver and passenger windows with 25% VLT film and the rear side windows with very dark 5% film. A Technical Service Bulletin from Tesla suggests not tinting the rear glass as it may cause it to shatter. As such, we left that alone.
Eastern Pennsylvania’s Best Car Audio Upgrades
With the subwoofer system dialed in and the tint complete, it was time to show the upgrade to the client. He loved how the custom trim panels looked in the trunk and was even more impressed with the audio system’s sound. We showed him how to care for the window film. He was very impressed with the film’s heat blocking capabilities.
If you’re in the Lehighton area and are considering a stereo system or window tint upgrade, drop by Mobile Edge. If you can’t get to our store during regular business hours, give us a call or click the red icon below to send us an e-mail.