VW TDI forum, Audi, Porsche, and Chevy Cruze Diesel forum banner

1 - 18 of 18 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
What is the easiest and cheapest way to improve the sound from the sound system? Can better quality speakers be installed to reduce the noise? I am not planning on spending much, or making any sort of major changes, but perhaps there is something simple that can be done. I put Boston Accoustic speakers in my old SI and that helped untill my daughter blew them out. :dunno
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
I'm assuming your car has the standard stereo, and not the Dynaudio option...

Fortunately you have a Golf, which is easy to upgrade. What you need are 2 pair (one for the front, one for the rear) of 6.75in /165mm or 6in component speakers. You'll need some lift rings as the factory speakers have a built in-lift in their plastic frame so the speakers clear the windows. You can get some MDF rings inexpensively on ebay. Crutchfield is a good place to see what's available, and if you want to save some money look at onlinecarstereo.com, wooferetc.com, or sonixelectronics.com.

If you've never installed your own speakers it's not hard in the MKVI, you just need instructions (check the forum and vortex.com in the MKV and MKVI sections), a drill, a few tools and crimp-on connectors.
One thing about paying more at Crutchfield is that they will send you instructions, have how-to videos online, and lifetime tech support with a live technical person.

If you get some speakers with high sensitivity (over 91 or 92 db/watt) your standard head unit can drive them to a reasonable volume without adding an amp.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
9,553 Posts
Well I'm not sure what comes in a US Golf as standard but I have an RCD310 and 8 speakers in mine but its not really a basic Golf. You can upgrade to RCD510 or RNS510 but its a bit costly.

You can have a read of upgrading here this site is very useful for tricks & tips so keep it in your favourites. ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
308 Posts
Being that I have the Dynaudio option, I don't necessarily have all the info on what the base speaker system is equipped with. There may be a low powered amp in the stock system though. I do have a lot of experience with upgrading stock speaker systems.

I can tell you that the most noticeable gain will be noticed by replacing the factory speakers with better quality. See post by "Snorlax" above. I agree with his recommendations.

Once you have upgraded the factory speakers, if later you still desire louder and more dynamic sound you can add a four channel amplifier to accompany your new and improved components.

You can even add a subwoofer later. But I'd replace the interiors before anything else. The RCD/RNS head units are pretty good and you wont notice much difference by going aftermarket unless you really go high end and also replace the speakers. If you dont replace the factory speakers and do the other upgrades you will likely blow the speakers and ultimately the factory speakers wont be able to show off the ability of the new amp or head unit upgrade if you so desire.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
I recently purchased a 2011 Golf Tdi with the Dynaudio option and am looking to upgrade myself. I wish there was a repair manual available for my car so I could be able look up info on the stereo. I would like to upgrade to a subwoofer and maybe a 4 channel amp to power the subwoofer and the front speakers.It would be nice to know how much power the stock speakers can handle.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Thanks guys, esp. Snorlax for the info. I will check out replacemnt speakers. Does anyone have a favorite brand/model? How do I remove the door panels to get to the speakers. In the old days, I just ripped them off after removing the window cranks. Obviously, this is not the right way for this car. I am a little more particular than I used to be about such things. I was pleased to find the system plays cd based MP-3s just fine as I have a number of them a friend made for me years ago. He was a blues lover and I must have 60 hours of blues on these things. That would cover a very long trip.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
29 Posts
Thanks guys, esp. Snorlax for the info. I will check out replacemnt speakers. Does anyone have a favorite brand/model? How do I remove the door panels to get to the speakers.
Glad to help. There's a lot of information online concerning DIY. This should get you started:

http://www.golfmk6.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5095

Despite what the author of that post said, it's not a big deal-I think he was puzzled about mounting aftermarket speakers after looking at what VW has been using for the last decade+.

Also, since the original speakers have a lift (to clear the window glass) built into them, you'll need four of these (one per door woofer):

http://cgi.ebay.com/MDF-Speaker-rings-6-5-speaker-spacer-1-MDF-/160472283639?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item255ce4b9f7

As for speaker recommendations, everyone's ear and budget are different. Although car stereo stores (not Best Buy) aren't as plentiful as they were years ago, it really pays to go listen to as many speakers as you can. You may not be able to hear the exact ones you are interested in buying, but at least you can hear the differences in how different companies voice their line.

The only thing I'd suggest is to see if you have a preference in the way the tweeters sound. Most companies use one type of high frequency drivers throughout their line. On one side are silk/textile dome tweeters that can give a softer and warmly detailed sound. JL Audio and Infinity get their sound from fabric tweeters. On the other hand are metal domes like MB Quart and Focal JM Labs. Metal tweets give a more aggressive, "hot" high end. Some people think they can be fatiguing to listen to for long periods of time. Others love 'em. In the middle are various polymer domes, like Boston Acoustics' "Kortec". Not too bright, and not as detailed as silk or metal. (Maybe that's why Boston uses alloy domes in their high-end line.)

Speakers may sound different in different cars, so that's something to consider. In my Elise I have a set of old-school (before being bought by Maxxonics) MB Quart Premiums. They sound great because the titanium domes cut through the incredible road noise in that car. However, I tried them in my Passat (which has a lot of sound deadening work) and hated them. Since the car is tomb-like on the highway, the Quarts were always too bright, even with the crossovers set low. Strangely, I love the Focals in a couple of out cars-their inverted aluminum tweeters sound nothing like the Quarts' titanium ones.

Perhaps too much opinion. I'm sure your Golf will sound much better before long.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
My '11 Golf 2dr has the DynAudio system with the RNS-315, and the far bottom end is really weak. It's disappointing because the system in my '09 Challenger is so warm and full that it has me spoiled for the VW. I'm in my mid-50s and am not that guy with the bowed-out windows that you hear at every stoplight. I just want to hear all the notes that are present in a recording. I have some songs that have notes in the low-bass part of the spectrum, and they're completely absent on the DynAudio system. I'm starting to think about a sub of some sort...unless I could accomplish what I need by changing out the stock speakers (which otherwise sound just fine). Anyone know how good the DynAudio speakers are, or whether they can be improved upon? I won't be changing anything else in the system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
308 Posts
1analguy, I have the Dynaudio as well and would consider myself an audiophile. I also have had years of training as a musician (though I'm far from professional), so I would like to think that I have a good ear/perspective on sound reproduction.

I don't consider the Dynaudio a poor system at all, whether its top, mid, or bottom of its range for a factory installed system. Further, I am impressed by its low end when tuned properly. Albeit, this system will never have the low end response that a good powered subwoofer would add. The system is also naturally bright, where I usually prefer a darker warmer sound...but that's personal preference, and I can live with it.

Allow me to suggest (if you haven't already), adjusting the EQ settings. One thing that greatly improved my low end response was adjusting the fade to give more gain to the rear speakers. The EQ is set up that the middle setting which could be interpreted as all speakers getting equal volume is not as such. At the middle setting your front speakers are still playing much louder than the rears. I found a point at which from the driver's seat, the front and rear speakers are playing at nearly the same volume, with the fronts playing only slightly louder. When
I then played with the Treb, Mid, Bass settings, I was able to get clean sounding powerful lows at a reasonably high volume. Everything else sounded great as well. Give it a try.

Now all this being said, the response will depend on the type of music you listen to. (My music of choice is Classic Rock) The Dynaudio system we have has been noted in just about all the reviews I've read to be able to handle synthetic digital bass and percussion better than natural instruments (bass and percussion) recorded in a live or even a mic'ed studio setting. I would agree with this. All this said, it would be nice to add a subwoofer to this system. A good 10" subwoofer with the right amplifier would completely round out this system. The problem is, where would you put it! (I like my cargo space) No one makes a mass produced custom sub enclosure for this car as of yet :( I haven't looked into the electrical particulars of adding a sub to this system yet, but I don't think it would be a big deal at all. For now, I can more than live with it as I have it set now.

One last thing: This Dynaudio system has been widely criticized for not having a dedicated subwoofer. My personal feeling is that I'm glad they didn't add one, because if they did, the sound wouldn't be any better than it is now. It would have been a cheezy 8" stuffed somewhere bad, and it would have like an 80 watt amp or something like that. What they did was focus on the mid-bass reproduction on the speakers and use the speakers to work together to give good bass reproduction. Adding a good subwoofer with an amp that includes a variable low pass filter will make a good system perfect.

By the way, for all you critics, I love my RCD-510. I keep it current with all the latest firmware updates and I use the MDI, bluetooth streaming, the CD player, Sat Radio, FM, AM, etc. and I have no complaints about it hanging up, or anything. Best head unit I've ever used. I just wish the screen colors had a darker night mode, though I think the 2011s with the 315 got that.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
9,553 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
308 Posts
Legally, at least where I am, there is no way VW would be able to get out of a warranty because I updated the firmware myself. I am using a genuine VW solution to update a genuine VW product. Now if the update gets interrupted and the unit's software is corrupted, then I would probably have to pay out of my pocket for a reflash, but there's no way that if I had a mechanical problem with the unit that they could come back and say that the warranty is void. I'd have them in court before they could even say it. And I'd win.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
39 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
I have copied and saved all the suggestions and instructions to make it work. As soon as I get settled in my new work week apartment and get over the initial stresses of working again, I will set out to make it happen. I do love good sound.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
1analguy, I have the Dynaudio as well and would consider myself an audiophile. I also have had years of training as a musician (though I'm far from professional), so I would like to think that I have a good ear/perspective on sound reproduction.

I don't consider the Dynaudio a poor system at all, whether its top, mid, or bottom of its range for a factory installed system. Further, I am impressed by its low end when tuned properly. Albeit, this system will never have the low end response that a good powered subwoofer would add. The system is also naturally bright, where I usually prefer a darker warmer sound...but that's personal preference, and I can live with it.

Allow me to suggest (if you haven't already), adjusting the EQ settings. One thing that greatly improved my low end response was adjusting the fade to give more gain to the rear speakers. The EQ is set up that the middle setting which could be interpreted as all speakers getting equal volume is not as such. At the middle setting your front speakers are still playing much louder than the rears. I found a point at which from the driver's seat, the front and rear speakers are playing at nearly the same volume, with the fronts playing only slightly louder. When
I then played with the Treb, Mid, Bass settings, I was able to get clean sounding powerful lows at a reasonably high volume. Everything else sounded great as well. Give it a try.

Now all this being said, the response will depend on the type of music you listen to. (My music of choice is Classic Rock) The Dynaudio system we have has been noted in just about all the reviews I've read to be able to handle synthetic digital bass and percussion better than natural instruments (bass and percussion) recorded in a live or even a mic'ed studio setting. I would agree with this. All this said, it would be nice to add a subwoofer to this system. A good 10" subwoofer with the right amplifier would completely round out this system. The problem is, where would you put it! (I like my cargo space) No one makes a mass produced custom sub enclosure for this car as of yet :( I haven't looked into the electrical particulars of adding a sub to this system yet, but I don't think it would be a big deal at all. For now, I can more than live with it as I have it set now.

One last thing: This Dynaudio system has been widely criticized for not having a dedicated subwoofer. My personal feeling is that I'm glad they didn't add one, because if they did, the sound wouldn't be any better than it is now. It would have been a cheezy 8" stuffed somewhere bad, and it would have like an 80 watt amp or something like that. What they did was focus on the mid-bass reproduction on the speakers and use the speakers to work together to give good bass reproduction. Adding a good subwoofer with an amp that includes a variable low pass filter will make a good system perfect.

By the way, for all you critics, I love my RCD-510. I keep it current with all the latest firmware updates and I use the MDI, bluetooth streaming, the CD player, Sat Radio, FM, AM, etc. and I have no complaints about it hanging up, or anything. Best head unit I've ever used. I just wish the screen colors had a darker night mode, though I think the 2011s with the 315 got that.
I appreciate the tips, but I've tried them all already. Increased involvement of the rear bass drivers did improve things, but only slightly. It's still more or less dead on the far bottom end. I'm talking here about something that you almost feel, rather than hear. I may just have to live with it until somebody comes up with a slick, easy sub add-on (maybe something under one of the seats?). As I said, I don't need a lot, just something that responds a bit at the bottom end...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
I appreciate the tips, but I've tried them all already. Increased involvement of the rear bass drivers did improve things, but only slightly. It's still more or less dead on the far bottom end. I'm talking here about something that you almost feel, rather than hear. I may just have to live with it until somebody comes up with a slick, easy sub add-on (maybe something under one of the seats?). As I said, I don't need a lot, just something that responds a bit at the bottom end...
Have you looked at this?
http://mobile.jlaudio.com/products_stealthbox_detail.php?fit_id=1646
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
100 Posts
Now that's just sweet! I wonder if it will fit the mk6 Golf. I see that they list one for the mk4, but not for any Golf later than that...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
10 Posts
I just bought a 2012 VW Golf TDi with the Premium Sound, no Dyna. I am thinking about adding a 4 channel amp, 4 component speakers, and an Infinity Basslink. I already have all of this equipment, except the amp, since I've had two vehicles totaled in the past 1.5 years. My question needs some futher explanation but here goes.....In my 2001 VW Cabrio I replaced the deck unit, and speakers, added an amp and Infinity Basslink. In that car, that upgrade caused issues with mechanics not being able to read the car's computer through the VAG computer. What I had to do was have someone cut a wire that was under the dash, then the VAG was able to read all its necessary inputs. That being said, are there any such similar issues with the 2012 Golf Premium 8 system? I'm leaving the deck in, but I still figure the wires will be messed with and I'm afraid that the issue with the Cabrio will repeat itself with my Golf.

Here is a link to the K-Line story to which I am referring. http://www.ross-tech.com/vag-com/aftermarket-radio.html
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Speaker upgrade

I did not like the sound coming from the stock "premium" sounds systems. The sound was muddled and lacked clarity. I really didn't like the sound on the AM dial especially when the HD radio would drop or a station didn't have HD. I tried all the tuning options availalbe on the touch screen but it was not much of an improvement.
I had some Pinoeer TS-D1720s installed in the front & rear doors. The installer said it was a little bit challenging but he is a pro and did a great job (also tinted my windows which is not a factory option)The sounds is very crisp and clear. I was thinking of adding an external Amp as well but I am currently satisfied with the improved sound quality so maybe next year.
 
1 - 18 of 18 Posts
Top