Mixing 2 ohm and 4 ohm speakers

Discussion in 'Wheels, Wings, Mud, and Water' started by HokieVT, Jan 31, 2018.

  1. HokieVT

    HokieVT Active Member

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    I have a 2009 Acura RDX with 2 bad speakers. I am replacing one of the fronts but the speakers are cheap. Really Acura?
    I was debating replacing the rears, one of which is bad, with after market speakers. But the Acura speakers are 2 ohm and any speaker i buy will most likely be 4 Ohm. I don't think it will hurt the amp but I thought I would get an expert opinion.
     

     

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  2. gadget73

    gadget73 junk junkie Subscriber

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    won't hurt it if you go higher. Lower is where you have problems. I have similar issues with one of mine. Factory speakers are 3.2 ohm, replacements are 4.
     
  3. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    Tiny magnet, right? My 2009 CR-V had similarly "cheap" speakers, but keep in mind that with the race on to improve gas mileage, they made these speakers to be ultra-light first, and put sound quality second. Then again, we had a horrid Bose system in our '99 TL and those speakers were flimsy, cheap paper cones (no tweeter, no whizzer cone) with small magnets and flimsy stamped baskets, cranked through some extreme equalization through them to get the speakers to reproduce frequencies they just weren't designed to handle. So even a "premium" system can have crap components.

    I put Morel Maxximo speakers in my CR-V--a 6½" component set in the front (due to dash-mounted tweeters), and 6½" coaxials in the rear. However, I did this as part of a total system replacement, so I am driving them with a separate power amp on a Pioneer head unit now. I did not use them on the stock head unit. And I had to use EQ to knock down the front tweeters quite a bit since they were way too bright. Tried a Polk component set, but they didn't fit--the shape of the woofer basket would not clear the opening in the door. So, that is something to watch for.

    The 4-ohm speakers won't hurt, but the sound output will be noticeably less, if my past experience is any indication. I had cheapo oem Pioneer speakers in my '97 CR-V, and dropped in my old Polk MM-series speakers. They sounded better but could not play nearly as loud on the stock Honda (Alpine) head unit since they were not as efficient. I have no clue as to the impedance of the original Pioneers.
     
  4. gadget73

    gadget73 junk junkie Subscriber

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    Factory amps do have a lot of EQ. The JBL systems in my Lincolns have a really severe EQ curve, different levels front to back, and the driver's side is a little lower up front so it sounds balanced. Its slightly different depending what vehicle the amp is from too, so they did spend some time tuning it. The speakers they used were reasonably decent though. Rear speakers were a poly cone 6x9 with big magnets and a decently stout basket, and it had a "pod" in the middle with a mid and a tweet. Mid was a crappy paper cone, tweet was a metalized dome tweeter. The rear speakers were vehicle dependant too, different tilt to the pod depending on the rear window glass shape, and they were mirrored as well. Front speakers were paper cone coaxials with a decent magnet. Dash speakers, on cars that had it, were paper whizzer cones with decent magnets. The paper was really the problem. The dash and rear speakers had the paper turn to dust just from being in the sun. Also at this point in time the now-obsolete STK chips inside the amplifier are dying and getting difficult to obtain. I had one fail in my car a couple weeks ago. Luckily I had parts on hand to fix it.

    Overall it sounded good, but perhaps not the most detailed or accurate thing you'll ever hear. Its a car though so there are limits to what you're gonna get out of it.
     
  5. Wildcat

    Wildcat Audio Sommelier

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    I think it depends, too, on whether it is a "premium" package like the JBL, vs. a standard system. (And to be honest, JBL's car speakers would easily play circles around that Bose trash--the Bose system we had was crippled to begin with by using a single cheap paper cone driver and as such, the EQ was extreme...and it sounded like it. The bass and midbass severely "modulated" the higher notes. Terrible. At least the JBL system had some thought put into it and started with higher quality drivers!)

    Standard head units likely don't bother with EQ, probably because 99% of the car owners out there don't care as long as it produces sound. ;)

    One thing to note on the newest cars--some of them reduce cabin noise by feeding it through the audio system, out of phase, so the noise cancels out in the car. Changing speakers is out of the question if a person wants to keep that feature, as the audio system depends on the response of the speakers to accomplish that. Otherwise it has to be disabled somehow.
     
  6. gadget73

    gadget73 junk junkie Subscriber

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    yeah the Ford HU sounds pretty similar to an aftermarket one when paired with the stock JBL amp. The eq magic is all in the amplifier. I graphed the response of one once just because I was curious. It cuts the lowest of the lows, basically the stuff the speakers can't reproduce anyway, has a bump in the upper bass in back and cuts it up front.

    One of these days I'll grab one of the premium sound amps from that era as well as the older one and see what they do by comparison.
     
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