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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
I recently bought a 2012 Scion XB with the base Pioneer sound system and IMHO the highs were terrible (annoyingly edgy) and the overall sound flat sounding. I'm a musician, have built a couple of recording studios and listen to almost all my music driving in the car ('60s-'70s Classic Rock, old R&B and some oldies).
I talked to the top audio builder / installer in the area and he said "forget the rear speakers and put your money in the fronts because that's what you'll listen to" so, I skipped the cheaper BA S60s and went with these which after reading a bunch of reviews seemed to strike a reasonable balance between cost and sound.
Amazon.com: Boston Acoustics SC60 6.5" Car Audio Component Speakers: Electronics


What an improvement these made! I've always been a Boston Acoustics fan for the warm sound and these didn't dissapoint. The highs are clear as a bell, a couple of acoustic guitar passages are soooo realistic and the real suprise was the bass. I was figuring to eventually add a sub when I saw that 55hz bass spec but no, the bass is smokin'! (I may still add the sub down the road but no hurries thanks to these).
I set the crossovers to -2db and it wouldn't hurt to go -4 for a perfect balance as the highs are a bit hot from this head unit. I have it set to "feel", bass to 0 and treble to -2 (that's why I suggest -4 on the crossovers to run the unit flat).
For those of us on a tight budget I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THESE!!!:cheers:
 

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I recently bought a 2012 Scion XB with the base Pioneer sound system and IMHO the highs were terrible (annoyingly edgy) and the overall sound flat sounding. I'm a musician, have built a couple of recording studios and listen to almost all my music driving in the car ('60s-'70s Classic Rock, old R&B and some oldies).
I talked to the top audio builder / installer in the area and he said "forget the rear speakers and put your money in the fronts because that's what you'll listen to" so, I skipped the cheaper BA S60s and went with these which after reading a bunch of reviews seemed to strike a reasonable balance between cost and sound.
Amazon.com: Boston Acoustics SC60 6.5" Car Audio Component Speakers: Electronics


What an improvement these made! I've always been a Boston Acoustics fan for the warm sound and these didn't dissapoint. The highs are clear as a bell, a couple of acoustic guitar passages are soooo realistic and the real suprise was the bass. I was figuring to eventually add a sub when I saw that 55hz bass spec but no, the bass is smokin'! (I may still add the sub down the road but no hurries thanks to these).
I set the crossovers to -2db and it wouldn't hurt to go -4 for a perfect balance as the highs are a bit hot from this head unit. I have it set to "feel", bass to 0 and treble to -2 (that's why I suggest -4 on the crossovers to run the unit flat).
For those of us on a tight budget I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THESE!!!:cheers:
Man when I bought my 2012 I had to go back because I thought there was clearly something wrong and I even compared it to another new stock unit.. those "tweeters" were SOOOO harsh in my ears I wanted to turn it off and listen to my ipod thru my futuresonics..

I did however notice that for whatever reason the highs werent as bad with the upgraded head unit with navigation (which I think is built by alpine)

none the less I wish you would have posted this earlier because the 2nd day I owned the car I drove to my local stereo shop and had EVERYTHING replaced with JL Audio (didnt want to fork out the loot for focal) although I am still not satisfied with the tweeter it has worked for now (as long as I keep my 12k -4db) but I def hear more nuances in my music so I can speak somewhat highly of the JL set up (although it is amped as well)


next up for me is THIS BOX and I will add some low end and I think I should be satisfied although as a musician and audio snob myslef (also owned and built a recording studio) I will probably never be satisfied but hey, thats my sickness..:cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Yeah, promoting that base audio system as a "premium" system is a joke. I'm going to set the crossovers to -4 this weekend to try to get the best balance. Just dropping the treble -2 seems to roll off those cool highs we all like while the overall highs are still a bit too much. Still, the BAs are a huge improvement over stock.
 

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I have the "Premium" Pioneer set up in my 12 also. I also have had trouble finding settings I like. I miss the mid-bass in the doors that my stock Bose system had in my previous car. The system wasn't mind blowing but very sufficient for my liking and kept me from pouring money down the audio hole like I've done time and time again before.

First question, what setting do you think sounds best to you? "Natural", "Hear" or "Feel"? I seem to prefer "Feel". The others sound muffled and flat.

Second, have you tried the other vehicles, xA, xD, tC settings you can choose from? I found that mine was set to tC when I bought the car.

Last, has anyone researched whether the RCA outs in the back of the H/U are for subs only or are there some for other channels too? I like the usability and options of the factory H/U and don't want to swap it out if I don't have to. Eventually I'll probably upgrade the doors and would obviously want to power them with an amp. I have a JL stealthbox that will be installed Tuesday along with a resurrected Memphis 500 watt class D amp from a past system. I am worried that I will be chasing mids and highs next.
 

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FWIW -- My xB2 audio experience is with the base 2008 HU. It was just fine for keeping the purchase cost down, but after certain other vehicle mods, I replaced all four door speakers and the sound was much improved, but still clearly wanting. My next move was to replace the HU, however, I found there was too much door panel vibration (thanks to the improved speaker response) to properly evaluate my candidates (was even making the OE tweeters sound bad). So, first I had to damp the door panels (which I did). That also corrected the tweeter "problem" and then I was finally able to compare and select a head unit that clearly surpassed the OE as well as the other candidates.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I set the crossovers to -4 on the BAs this weekend and with the treble on the unit at -1 it's really pretty nice now.

I also found that "feel" is the only setting that gives the sound any body at all.

I traded a '05 Dodge Magnum R/T for this and their "premimum" stock sound system with BA speakers and a 300w digital amp was truly as advertised. What a great sounding system, never had to touch a thing!!

Now that I'm enjoying the sound of these (and the mid - bass boost they have too) I'm really thinking about getting the matching component speakers for the rear doors to see how that rounds things out.

 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
My great wife bought me the matching back BAs for my upcoming birthday. I'll probably install these myself since it seems like a simple switch-out.
I'll keep yas posted :cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Keeping the info going I replaced the rear door speakers yesterday with the BA SC65s and after spending a day (and evening) cruising around playing with settings I've come to the conclusion that if you can afford it replacing all the speakers is the way to go. Using the links I posted and having them installed I'm still under $400.00 and the sound is amazing!

Replacing the fronts was a huge improvement but adding the rears just added even more to the overall clarity and definition. IMHO this is now a quality sounding system and adding a sub down the road will only make it better.

With the added clarity I ended up with the treble at -4, Bass at +1 with the overall sound set to "feel". I went through everything from oldies, acoustic through ZZ Top. The clarity is such that you can hear the sticks actually contact the cymbals even when they're back in the mix, hear the pick cross the strings on an acoustic guitar, the kick drums have punch and you can hear the bass good although again a sub is still needed to really catch the full lows.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Just a final followup on this project..after a week of driving around and listening to the extremes of my MP3 collection (lol) I AM COMPLETELY SATISFIED WITH THIS UPGRADE!! Even the bass is satisfactory and maybe I'll experiment with a sub down the road but I'm hearing what I need to for now. Reading through all the audio threads, the needs of our fellow XBers span the spectrum of needs and tastes but for the average listener that just wants a nice clean, balanced, affordable upgrade I think this setup is worth looking into.

Thanks to all the previous posters whos information was invaluable in helping me make my choices :cheers:
 

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It's funny, reading your experiments with the stock system. I have come to almost the same settings after a few days of fiddling with mine. I also felt the highs were scratchy and kept them about flat. I can run the bass flat or -1 for some recordings.

The nice thing I noticed is that the auto leveling works well at high volumes, but low volumes everything is scooped. It doesn't equal out until into the 40's for volume. Which is loud but still comfortable and I get no distortion for most older recordings (Read not compressed/limited to the max, like most modern metal :() Overall I'm not really all that disappointed with the stock setup considering every vehicle I've had in the last 20 years has had coaxials, so this is still nice imaging that I can almost over look the brash tweeters. Almost.

Maybe some component changes are in order. I have an old kicker L7 box in my truck waiting to be torn out but I'm really eyeing the JL stealthbox. I shouldn't have any trouble unloading my current box. But I have long admired those boxes, and now that I have a new vehicle to start over with, I really want to do it right. I am also a working musician and bought this vehicle so I can load my bass rig into it. Having a big sub box taking up the whole back isn't going to work out so well, the JL box is the perfect answer while still having the musicality and overhead for when I just want to rattle some teeth. Some days you just need that after a hard day at work! :)

Anyways, sorry just thinking out loud, but long story short, it's nice to hear other musicians and audio geeks coming to the same conclusions. Guess it's good I wear earplugs at gigs, since my ears are still working well!
 

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2 thumbs up for the JL stealth box for solid bass. Especially if you have remote gain to fine tune for individual songs.
 

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Only problem with "fine tuning" for individual selections is you're engaging in mixing rather than appreciating. One presumes the original mix is what the artist intended. If you're jockeying the bass, then forget fidelity, it's all about personal preference and nothing about performance. Best realized performance comes from well balanced reproduction, that doesn't require selection-to-selection adjustment -- just proper initial setup.
 

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Wow. Quite the expert. I don't care what the artist intends. I care what I want to hear. I'll take my set up and rotate a knob to my liking over wish I had a more powerful sub set up. But since I asked your opinion, oh wait, I didn't... I commented with my experience with a set up that I own after it was mentioned by someone seeking to purchase one in the future.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I'm a drummer and the Bazooka sub in another thread might be the ticket for you. It sits off to the side pretty good. Down the road I may add one myself. I use my XB to lug my DWs around too :cheers:


It's funny, reading your experiments with the stock system. I have come to almost the same settings after a few days of fiddling with mine. I also felt the highs were scratchy and kept them about flat. I can run the bass flat or -1 for some recordings.

The nice thing I noticed is that the auto leveling works well at high volumes, but low volumes everything is scooped. It doesn't equal out until into the 40's for volume. Which is loud but still comfortable and I get no distortion for most older recordings (Read not compressed/limited to the max, like most modern metal :() Overall I'm not really all that disappointed with the stock setup considering every vehicle I've had in the last 20 years has had coaxials, so this is still nice imaging that I can almost over look the brash tweeters. Almost.

Maybe some component changes are in order. I have an old kicker L7 box in my truck waiting to be torn out but I'm really eyeing the JL stealthbox. I shouldn't have any trouble unloading my current box. But I have long admired those boxes, and now that I have a new vehicle to start over with, I really want to do it right. I am also a working musician and bought this vehicle so I can load my bass rig into it. Having a big sub box taking up the whole back isn't going to work out so well, the JL box is the perfect answer while still having the musicality and overhead for when I just want to rattle some teeth. Some days you just need that after a hard day at work! :)

Anyways, sorry just thinking out loud, but long story short, it's nice to hear other musicians and audio geeks coming to the same conclusions. Guess it's good I wear earplugs at gigs, since my ears are still working well!
 

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Trevor S , I agree with the fine tuning statement Of yours , but people's hearing ability 's are different (certain frequencies ) you also have to deal with resonates of the cars acoustics . Plus alot of music is of poor quality.
And let's not even go to mp3's their just wrong .

You both make good points
:cheers:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
"Fine tuning" in this conversation probably means no more than setting up an audio baseline compatable with most formats. That of course has to include car acoustics plus the individuals tastes and hearing capabilities.

MP3s are fine provided they are ripped to the higher standards. Perhaps a true audiophile with a $3,000+ home (or studio) reference system will be able to hear the diffences but in a car???? Not a chance unless the MP3 was a crappy rip (and there are plenty out there).

This thread is just about making a decent audio environment on a budget. I'd love to have the high end Boston Acoustic speakers, a 300w amp, a 500w sub and a 30 band EQ to dial it in but unless I planned to sit still with the engine off there would still be major frequencies altered (or completely cancelled) by engine & road noise so in the end.......have fun!:cheers:
 
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