A client from Kempton recently contacted the team at Mobile Edge to inquire about upgrading the audio system in his 2016 Ford Explorer. He didn’t like how lifeless and bland the factory-installed audio system sounded. After talking to the client about his listening preferences, we had a look at the vehicle to come up with options for installation, then we auditioned several products on our interactive displays. Finally, we put together a sound system upgrade that would deliver the clarity, detail and impact the client wants.
Factory Radio Integration Solution
As is common with many audio system upgrades, the new gear we proposed would make use of the factory radio in the dash of the Explorer. We used an Audison bit Nove digital signal processor (DSP) to take the speaker output signal from the OEM radio and convert it into a signal that would connect to the new amplifiers in the system.
The bit Nove also allows us to apply equalization, crossovers and signal delays to each speaker to create a realistic listening experience. After tuning, the music will sound as though it’s coming from an imaginary soundstage that spans the width of the windshield and will be balanced and sound natural with respect to bass, midrange and high-frequency information.
Hertz Mille Speaker Upgrade
As is always the case, your sound system is only as good as your speakers. Our client chose a set of Hertz Mille Legend-series MLK165.3 6.5-inch components for his truck. Our fabrication team created a set of PVC plastic speaker adapters that allow the woofers from the MLK165.3 set to bolt into the door speaker location and use the existing fasteners.
Before installing the speakers, we applied a layer of HushMat sound deadening material to the inner and outer door skins to reduce buzzes and rattles, and to serve as a gasket for the speakers so they seal perfectly. A set of foam acoustic coupling gaskets was added around the door speakers to help focus the energy from the speaker into the interior of the vehicle, rather than allow it to bounce around inside the door cavity.
The tweeters from the Hertz speaker set are mounted in the factory speaker location at the top of the door panels.
We installed a set of Hertz MPX 165.3 PRO 6.5-inch coaxial speakers in the rear doors of the Explorer using the same process, materials and adapters as we used on the interior speakers.
Audison Voce Car Audio Amplifiers
As mentioned, once you have great speakers, premium amplifiers can deliver amazing sound. This client chose a set of Audison Voce amps to power his sound system. A Voce AV5.1k five-channel amp delivers up to 75 watts of power to the tweeters and 140 watts to the rear speakers. The subwoofer channel produces as much as 1,000 watts of power for the pair of 10-inch subs in the back of the truck. A matching Voce quattro amp powers the door speakers in a bridged configuration with an impressive 400 watts of power on tap for each side of the car.
Our fabrication team created a set of custom steel amp racks for the Audison amps that allow us to install one amp under each of the front seats. The rear of the bracket attaches to the seat support bar to ensure that the amps don’t move. We added a one-farad stiffening cap to the system to reinforce power delivery from the battery.
Custom Ford Explorer Subwoofer Enclosure
We finished off the fabrication process by creating a custom subwoofer enclosure for a pair of Audison APS10D shallow-mount subwoofers. The enclosure sits at the back of the rear cargo area and is finished in black carpet that matches the vehicle interior.
Ford Explorer Audio System Upgrade
With the bit Nove dialed in and the vehicle back together, it was time for the client to return to Mobile Edge in Lehighton to hear his audio system for the first time. He was absolutely blown away by the clarity and detail the system delivered. He said it was like experiencing a live concert! If you are interested in upgrading your car stereo system, drop by our store or click the button below to schedule a consultation.
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