I'm sort of new to the forum, but have been in Car Audio for 6 years. I've seen a lot of threads with kids who consider Audiobahn a lot, be it for whatever reason, and still buy it usually because of looks. As a professional, I thought it might be good to let people read this from one who has experienced their product instead of thinking I'm some typical kid who jumped on the bandwagon flaming Audiobahn. First, I'm 35 and co-own a custom audio shop (I'm not saying names or location, as Glasswolf said in another post it is distasteful to promote a business on a forum provided by a car audio dealer). We opened this store 4 years ago in order to offer higher end car audio in a town that only had Best Buy and Wal Mart as an option. A couple of months after opening, a lot of kids came in and left discouraged because JL Audio, Focal, Dynaudio was way past their budget, yet they wanted something better than Lightning Audio, Pioneer, Sony, and Rockford Fosgate. So, we made the decision to carry a lower level, cheaper brand to appeal to them, where Audiobahn came to play. The reason we chose Audiobahn was through magazine articles and that it was the top brand kids asked about. The first thing I was turned off of was their business practices, as they want you to force-feed their products to customers, which I was not up to pushing them over JL Audio, etc., but my brother thought it would be worth it if they sold well and it got our business on its feet. From the beginning we had a lot of returns and began questioning the integrity of their products, and began recording every return and the reason behind them. Out of all returns, Audiobahn took 71% of them, and over 60% of the Audiobahn products we sold were returned or exchanged, 45% of those in less than 30 days. Over half were due to defects and breakage, the other from dissatisfaction, in which the majority of returns were their subwoofers. We began this charting in the 4th quarter of the year (Which we sold the most of because of parents buying their kids christmas presents). In the couple of months that we carried their products we lost a LOT of potential profit due to returns and having to sell "Off the Shelf" products. Due to our business being less than a year old and losing money, we discontinued Audiobahn and sold all of their products at wholesale price just to get it off the shelves. The top customer complaints we heard that were not defects, of course, were poor sound quality and feeling that they did not get their money's worth. I feel that everyone should really weigh out their options before purchasing ANY car audio product, and always listen to them and read reviews before making a purchase.
just to note, I've mentioned audioblah's business practices before, and how they require a minimum sales quota per month to keep selling their product. While I couldn't supply actual numbers for returns and reasons for them, I have dealt with a lot of the same complaints. The problem with carrying a crappy product line to suit the poor people is that as you get this high return rate, you also tarnish your company's reputation, and while you had the best intentions, in the end, what you get is a lot of people saying "don't go there, I got a system and it sucked." or "I got ripped off there" or "they sell crap" In the end, it's like high end home audio shops. If you can't afford what they carry, then march yourself to best buy and shop there. Integrity has to weigh in against market share at some point, because the long term damage to your business can be more devastating to you in the end.
What lines does your company carry by the way? I'm always looking for good deals on Eclipse, Dyn, Zapco, stuff like that. I'm going to need to order parts this year for the Celica when I start that project if it pans out.
I didnt want to read it at first due to the length but after i read to the 3rd line I was in to it like a book. I knew Audiobahn suxed but i didnt know it was that crucial.
Glasswolf, you are definately the most knowledgeable person on this forum but it's hard for some kid to trust you when 50 other people on the thread have kids arguing who's system is the s@it. That's why I posted this. We dropped Audiobahn because of a horrible reputation and a loss of money. The sales quota made it worse, and I didn't like it therefore I didn't push it because I wasn't going to push that crap over reputable brands. It took a lot of time to build the reputation back and we took a back to the basics strategy and built two cars to advertise the business, one with all JL Audio, and one Dynaudio w/ 4 Kicker solobarics(for SPL). Glasswolf, unfortunately we're not an online company (yet ), and we're in Georgia (sorry, unless you want a LONG drive.) We carry Eclipse, Jl Audio, Focal, Dynaudio, Diamond Audio, MB Quart, Kicker, and Boston Acoustics, Infinity Kappa Perfect, and Oz Audio. We don't carry Zapco amps yet, but I've talked to my brother about it and we are seriously considering it in the future for the serious competitors and audiophiles, but right now we're working on expanding into home audio, after building room to accomodate it. We've had a good year so far. Possible future additions to car audio are CDT and Rainbow.
good brands. Oz makes some terrific stuff. Pick up Martin Logan for home speakers *grin* awesome stuff, and based in Lawrence, KS. I may be in GA this year to pick up the Celica I'm looking to buy, so I'll have to see how close you are. Maybe I can swing in and say hey on the way by.
Yeah I understand the reason for the post and I agree with it. I was just backing up some of the points. Noting that I'd mentioned the very same things before. I'd wondered if anyone actually believed me.. lol I can understand a company setting a minumum order amount, which is common, but audiobahn pushes that a bit over the edge to me. I was really sad to see some places like Crutchfield pick them up.
Yeah, we're looking into Martin Logan, Infinity Prelude, and Alpha and Beta series, a lot of stuff, really. Haven't decided, it's been a busy year and kinda hard to look around with my schedule. I've been working on my car in my free time and am currently fabricating it's sound system. No video, just audio, it's just taking up my time because I'm dynamatting everything, and I'm making everything reversible so that I do not ruin the value of the car. It's turning out nice, 1969 Mercury Cougar Xr-7 convertible. I'm putting Focal Utopias w/ focal inverted dome tweeters in the pillars (attenuated). Looking at subs, debating the JL W7, Eclipse Titanium, and Focal subs. We're thirty miles from Augusta, if you're coming near Augusta, I can email you directions or something.
I'll have to find out where the person with the car is in GA, and let ya know. Energy is pretty good for speakers at home as well, for a more modest budget. the Connoisseur line and above are all very good stuff. Pass labs, krell, rotel for amplifiers.. mark levinson for pre/pro stuff like that.
the Mercury sounds nice.
Thanks for the recommendations, any and all help is greatly appreciated. I love the Mercury. So far I've put a 5.0 EFI engine and 5 speed, so it cruises nice and smooth, and pretty good on gas. Once I get the Utopias and Eclipse subs (made up my mind)in there it'll be a fun drive to work. This is more a personal car than an advertisement. Joseph (Our installer) is thinking of competing in IASCA, not sure which class, I'll be at the competition if he's there, I think I saw somewhere that you've done competitions before, so I'm sure we can meet there if you can't swing by the shop.
yup. I'm going to need some stuff you carry for the Celica actually. eclipse CD8454 2 Audiocontrol EQTs zapco SP4-SL pre-amp zapco C2K 4.0X zapco C2K 9.0X 2 or 4 eclipse SW9122 12" Ti subs and a set of DynAudio system 360s that's going to be the layout for the car for SQ events. you carry at least half of that stuff lol
Yeah, I was about to say, we don't carry Zapco, or Audiocontrol, actually. The rest we accommodate. How are you going to do the install? Just curious, I know it may be secret . That'll be an awesome setup. Focal Utopias and Dynaudio are my favorites, I just couldn't fit Dynaudio in my car because I didn't want to hack the doors, no room anywhere else for the 8's. Eclipse subs are def. some of the best. Is that the one you planned w/ the AP enclosures? We've done a couple on request, their response is unreal. Haven't seen them in comps that much, it'll be a nice change. (possibly a benefit in your direction) which class do you usually compete in?
I've got everything you need, just e-mail me your credit card details... lol just kidding Glass. I'm about to register a screen name and I'll let you know on a thread or post when I get it, then you can email me from there on what you want, price estimates, etc.
Anon, yeah I was pondering going AP with this, but the celica is a hatchback so I'd have to port them to outside the car, and I'd rather not. general idea, 270A alternator, 0ga cable, triple shielded twisted pair RCAs, all esoteric audio probably. I haven't decided where I want to put the EQTs yet. I may gut the glovebox, and mount them on casters like a rack, so I can slide each one out on a shelf to adjust it, then push it back in, and close up the glovebox. the CD unit and the pre-amp are going in-dash, with the pre-amp under the eclipse acting as the main volume, fader, balance, and tweaking for bass boost and such during daily use. that also boosts the eclipse/audiocontrol 8V signal to a balanced 16V DIN cable which makes the signal as clean as it gets. from there it'll go to the two amps using the same symbiolink cables, and I'll run another cable back from the amps to the dash to handle the in-dash displays for each amp, which supply car voltage rails, amp voltage rails, amp temps, amp outputs etc. on demand. the two amps, I'm thinking probably flush mounted into the floor of the hatch at about a 45 degree angle one above the other, and hidden under a motorized panel that'll lift when triggered from the alarm remote. the entire floor plate will lift up to get to the spare tire and such if needed. the subs are going into fiberglassed enclosures that line each fender well on the sides of the hatch, probably protruding a bit and angling upward toward the hatch back window. the glass will be gel-tinted to match the car interior so it looks fairly stock. the Dyns, each 8" goes in the factory location in the center console, one on each side. the midrange goes in the door's factory spot about shin/knee level, angled, and the tweeters will be painted to match the door color, and flush mounted below the sills. alarm LEDs are going in the door sills as well, similar to how I did the festiva years ago. The car is also getting a 2" full rollcage I'll fabricate and 4 pt. harnesses for the front seats. also upgrading the custom turbo charger and engine internals so I can get about 12psi boost, and around 270hp at the tires. It'll be a show car top to bottom pretty much. Doing vertical scissor "lambo" doors on it as well.. just for the chick magnet effect. heh car's a pearlcoat mica blue. it shifts colors in light, almost like the newer kamelion paints. lots of plans fo rthe car anyway. we'll see what happens. I'm going to bridge the 4.0X to two channels and feed each channel of the Dyn's 180 watts, then run the 9.0X in 2 channel for 600 watts per sub for two Ti 12". The 9.0X can deliver up to 2000 watts alone. It's a pretty wicked amplifier.. but I guess it should be for $2400 plus the display, cables, and programming card. anyway. maybe I should call up zapco again and bug them about sponsorship, or being a dealer for them. *digs around for his reseller ID* haha
Yeah, we usually install kicks and put the 8's in there in larger cars, one we made custom door panels and installed them basically at a 135 degree slope, woofer at bottom closer to you, then mid, then tweeter, all angling towards you. Then used a little time correction on the 8454 and it sounded sweet, others we just make the factory 6.5" door speaker larger, put the 8 in that, then mid and tweet in kicks angling towards you. It's all what you want, I prefer clean looking installs myself, nothing that looks way out of the ordinary. I like the Celica, sounds expensive (haha). Will be very nice, though.
I'll really need to mess with phase for that if I use it for midbass, but we'll see. if it doesn't go there, I get to fiberglass a pod for the front lower corner of each door and put the 8" there.. or 7" if I go system 340. what's the mounting depth for the 8" midbass?
anonymous you should try to anwser other threads. that way glasswolf can have a break. because you sound like a smart guy when it comes to car audio. and bacon and glass are the only two real smart ones on here. but bacon has learned alot of thing from glass so we all get the same opinions from both.
Hey Glass keep me updated with info on that car, i wanna see how that car come out
Top mounting depth is about 3 1/8" or less if I remember correctly. I'd rather tell you that and it be smaller than larger. Not too terrible. I like the midbass location in the Celica. Very clean. I don't think you'll have too much of a problem getting them in there in separate airspace. That console has to be about a foot wide at the bottom.
yeah and probably crammed with stuff anyway.. my main concern is going to be phase shift with both of them back to back. it'll be interesting to see which way they work best.. 0 or 180deg. I may just pod them into the pockets in teh lower doors.. they'd fit just fine there and you'd barely notice them.
I thtin't think they were all that deep really, for an 8", so this shouldn't be too hard. just time consuming for glassing the doors. I want it to look as subtle as possible.. not attention getting. Just integrated nice and smooth. I want a "lexus" sort of feel to teh install. not fhashy per se.
don't worry. I'll have images posted of teh car as work progresses on my site. I'll post links.
hmm.. I'll have to look at the back side panels of the Celicas. where the outer arms of rear passengers would rest. If that plastic panel beneath the back side windows has an inset for an arm rest, I may glass a new set of panels, and flush mount the EQTs into the panels.. one per side, left and right. that'd look interesting.. like they're molded into the car. it'd make signal paths pretty easy too. right up the side rails.. and take power up the center. the batteries are already relocated to teh trunk anyway to make room for teh intercooler, so life is looking pretty easy.. hehe I like it when a plan comes together. all I'd need to do is slap in an isolator, add a couple yellowtops, the new alternator, and 0ga cable.
hey what do you think about Eclipse's Navigation system? I was toying with the idea of the LCD screen and Navi for the car.. no real need for DVD though, per se. this system is purely audio.
hey glass, where did you find an high output alternator for the celica, i've been calling around looking for one and so far no information about high output alternator for the car...... please let me know, thx
Alright, finally got a username. Glass, yeah I understand the 180 degree issue, much harder to get it to sound right, especially in that situation. Joseph made a custom console in a 1970 Chevrolet pickup w/ midbass drivers, just took a LOT of tuning, phase can help its just dependant on the car, in which the consoles of almost all new cars are just plain out huge now, and will block any sort of sound (on the right side, anyway). I like the door panel idea better than the console, as long as you have room to enclose either the mid or the woofer, they do sound better. I too like interiors that don't have wacky colors and huge contrast, some show cars now can only be described as gaudy. I'm thinking of a steel blue and silver inside the cougar, subtle and clean, but not plain. The car is silver anyway. Never fooled with the console of a Celica, I know the Camry's and Solara's can be a nightmare because of electronically controlled transmissions (yours is luckily a stick). Really, I'm not huge on Navigation and DVD, but the Eclipse is better than most (or all) others. You don't quite have the audio controls of the 8454, but you'll prob. not be using many of the controls w/ those 1/3 octave equalizers anyway. We haven't had any complaints or returns, but we've only sold a couple.
You AGAIN? I'm not going to waste any more time than this post arguing against some thick headed kid. You've been flamed and argued against in so many posts that I really question your intelligence. My argument is based on fact and a year of selling them listening to them in my shop. Read the above numbers. Audiobahn took 71 percent of the returns in my store, many of them for complaints of poor sound quality, and most due to defects and poor component quality (breaking). The fact that I carry high end lines of car audio (JL, Eclipse, Focal, Oz, Dynaudio, Diamond Audio) proves how Audiobahn compares with the big dogs, and why they DON'T "run the industry". In comparison, on any post, YOUR standing argument is that your BOSS amp and Audiobahn subs are still working, and sound good to you. You just got lucky, all the others on this forum didn't. The Subjectiveness of "sounding good" only comes to play when dealing with quality components that have research put into them.(Dynaudio vs. JL Audio, that's subjective, Dynaudio vs. Audiobahn, that's stupid). Audiobahn can't compare in a subjective manner to high quality components because they do not put forth the effort to accomplish it. They simply throw a sub together and enforce stiff sales quotas to make a quick buck from someone who doesn't know any better. Is this the kind of company you want to support? Low quality components such as Audiobahn simply have less research and development put into them, I'll bet they put more engineering into the CAD drawing for the flame basket than they did for the coil, driver, and cone. As far as the whole "bandwagon" issue, I posted this so a PROFESSIONAL opinion could be given. Don't ruin this information with your unvalued opinions, the purpose of a car audio forum is to help people.
just another troll. as for the alternator I'm having one custom built, probably by Stinger or Ohio Generator. The mounting brackets will be fabbed by a local metal shop.
the Nav was just sort of an afterthought.. I'm most likely still sticking to the 8454.
well im not going to argue whats the best out there just give my opinion. while i happen to owm two adiobahn 12s with an audiobahn 8000t amp i am very happy with them and i THINK they sound good compared to the jl w012s i had.but i finally got the money to afford the solox, three 12s. anyhow if people say that certain audio companys make crapy products then thats everyones opinion, and everyone is entitled to it.its like saying whats better ford chevy or dodge, then there is companys like deawoo,kia,hyundia etc.no matter what the chats about,if YOU like it then stay with it.there is no need for people to say whats the best and whats crap and then ruin a nice forum.people lets let the kids be kids and us adults act like adults,just putting in my own 2 cents worth.thank you.
anywez i built a slot vented box for them, 2 cf internal volume, tuned to 29 hz and port is 1.5" tall by 22.5" wide and 38" long - tried a pair of eclipse aluminums in there and they sounded absolutely nuts - massive spl while retaining pretty darn good sq
I'd just like to see mister Capone offer some objective data to support his trolling if he's going to jump into threads like this. That's all.
Hi, I would like to offer the other side of the coin to the orginial poster.
I am a owner of a car audio shop here in Atlanta. I will not give out our name or website. But lets just say we move alot of audiobahn products. Alittle background info. We opened the shop about a year ago in this location, We desided on 4 main amp/subwoofer lines. Audiobahn ( good, better, best) MTX ( good, better, best) Bazooka and bostwick.
Now we have been in business for alittle over a year now and have had great sucess with audiobahn total I have had 1 return on a AW1208T which was partly my fault was testing a new box and put 2000 rms to the brand new sub and poped a voice coil.. As far as the comapny goes I cant complain other then them pushing for MAP pricing. They have gave free product training to all my employees and thier tech support has been awesome. Jason the south eastern rep is a cool as hell guy to work with. Though I am sorry you have had a bad experience with the comapany thier product have made my business alot of money and low return rate. In my experience with working with different reps 3 comapanys that left a bad taste in my mouth Directed eletronics( orion, ppi,viper alarms etc..) Products are awesome but support is aweful. Jl audio.. buy in is set way to high and have psuhy sales staff, The crappy support award of the year award goes to......... Boss car audio I will never never buy another product of thiers agian not even for the very low end buyer off to walmart for them.
We don't stock them, but I've heard it and played around with it. I like it's simplicity and the feel of it. It's nice to see a high end head unit w/ simpler controls instead of all the complicated doodads. The sound quality is amazing. The car I heard it in was using Alpine Digital amp(s) which utilized the optical output. The 4V preouts are still used, but the manual says they reach 9V before clipping. I don't remember it supporting MP3, just looked on Alpines website and at the owner's manuals and it doesn't say that it does. Maybe they think MP3's do no justice to the quality of the head unit? who knows? Tuner is amazing, as well as DACs. Uses normal Bass engine, not Pro. No time correction, etc. Again, not an issue for you, probably. The DC-DC converter is nice, too. I'd say a little better SQ than the Eclipse, minus all the control functions including 3 way Pro mode support for bi-amping, which you'll probably never use it anyway with the Dynaudio's
yeah I'd be using one pair of preouts, which would go through two EQTs, then to the pre-amp. after that, fader, balance, etc is all done via pre-amp so no real need for the rest.
Time correction is nice I suppose, but I'd rather tehy added phase correction to be honest, as it'd make a more noticeable difference to a system in ym opinion. at the speed sound travels, sitting an extra foot from a speaker at a 3 foot range won't make an audible change. Now, being 90deg out of phase on the other hand, can affect the SQ.
I didn't figure you stocked the 7990 with the $3000 pricetag but I figured knowing the Alpine dealer discount plan, maybe someone at the shop might have one. *laugh*
Naw, all my employees are cheap. I'm a slave driver as far as wages go (just kidding). A sales rep. had one in his car and let me listen to it. Hard to judge off of one car, but it was very nice. I'd like to see phase adjustment, too. Do any head units do that, or external components? For $3000 you figure it'd have something out of the ordinary, but you do pay for quality. Really, I only use time correction when I absolutely have to, such as a car with a kick panel 3" long and no room behind it and nothing but a high door location. That's almost necessity when the left speaker is about a foot from your face and the right is 5+. Such as huge trucks with no kick panels.
I forgot who makes it.. but yeah there's an external phase correction component floating around. allows you to adjust phase for each channel you run through it. I'll have to dig up what it was called.
I have heard a good deal of Audiobahn equipment. I have owned some of there equipment, a pair of 12"'s, and they were loud. Not nearly as loud as my eslipses, but decent given the price. Alot of it is complete sh*t. On the other hand i have head some nice installs with some of the higher end Audiobahn equipment that sounds pretty damn good(as long as ur lucky and get something that isnt defective). Def not good for SQ. It seems like buying audiobahn is like playing russian rullete. If ur lucky u might get a decent system. And i am pretty sure the wattage ratings are geared toward ported applications b/c alot of the complaints i have heard are instances wear the spider tears or the voicecoil over extends due to too much ecursion due to the use of a sealed box. But i have never had the privaledge of hearing the Immortal series and i have heard mixed opinions but not nearly as many bad ones as normal. Is the Immortal series ne good. If ne one has heard or owned one your opinion would be appreciated.
Overexcursion happens more in a ported box rather than a sealed. A sealed puts more backpressure on the sub, controlling the cone more, while a ported lets air bleed from the box, bleeding pressure and allowing the woofer to move further. That's why ported works better than sealed for low power applications. The Immortal series are listed to only have a 14.5 mm x-max (going by the website). Compare that with, say, a Resonant Engineering X.X.X. that has 32 mm x-max. It'll have better sound quality and more surface area, too. They depend on RMS ratings because people think "man, 2000W RMS will be the sh*t". When actually, a more efficient sub with lower power can outdo it in all categories. You also don't have to put out the amp power or drain the current, either. My opinion is that you could have a voice coil that handles 10,000W RMS or more, if it has high inductance and is attached to a lead weight cone, chances are that it's not gonna make a lot of SPL. There are 600W RMS Woofers that will kill Audiobahn 1000W+ in SPL and sound quality.