A client from Norristown dropped into Mobile Edge in Lehighton in hopes of improving his 2016 Kia Optima stereo system. He liked the factory source unit and features, and the fact that the steering wheel-mounted audio controls made using the radio simple and safe. With that said, he felt the bass response and the overall impact of the system was lacking.
These are common complaints. After all, automakers are not audio experts. Luckily, we are! We designed an upgrade solution for the client that would retain his factory radio and add an amplifier, speakers and a subwoofer system. The client loved the plan, so we scheduled an appointment to perform the installation.
Hertz Amplifier and AudioControl Radio Integration
We used an AudioControl LC7i processor to extract a high-quality signal from the factory audio system. The LC7i uses speaker-level inputs and provides preamp outputs that we can connect to an amplifier. The AccuBASS circuit in the processor restores some of the lost bass response from the factory head unit.
We added an ACR1 remote control to the LC7i so the client would have quick access to the subwoofer level. We mounted the ACR1 on the side of the steering column.
We chose a Hertz HCP4 four-channel amplifier to power the system. This amp produces 65 watts per channel in stereo and 190 watts when bridged for a subwoofer. We created one of our trademark steel amp racks to mount the amp under the driver’s seat. After welding 1×2-inch steel together, we bolted the amp rack in place and secured the amplifier to it. We won’t say you can tow the car from the amp rack, but we guarantee the amp isn’t going anywhere.
New Hertz Speakers and Subwoofer
We installed a set of Hertz Dieci DSK165.3 6.5-inch components in the factory speaker locations in the doors. These components are of much higher quality than the factory speakers and will be able to handle the additional power the new amp can produce.
To reinforce low-frequency reproduction, we added a Hertz DS30 12-inch subwoofer in a ported enclosure. The ported enclosure offers excellent efficiency and improved low-frequency output.
Kia Optima Stereo Upgrade
Once we installed all of the equipment, we used our oscilloscope to set the level controls on the LC7i processor and the sensitivity controls on the HCP4 amplifier. Setting everything correctly ensures that the system will sound great and the client will have access to all the power his amplifier is capable of producing.
The client returned to Mobile Edge to experience his new Kia Optima stereo system for the first time. He was very impressed at how much more dynamic and lifelike it sounded.