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Discussion Starter #1
What is the best STOCK stereo that anyone has ever heard before, I mean acutally listened, not just read about.
 

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The best stereo I have actually listened to and was in awe, was a 2000 STS. That thing was awsome. But I guess the lack of variety of the vehicals I have been in could make my comment not very worthy.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I am an Audiophile, the stereo has to be excellent in a car for me to consider purchasing it. I know you can put in aftermarket kits but I am not into putting down that kind of money. Its frusterating whenever you read in C/D or MT and they do not say one word about the stereo system in a car, but they mention the damn air conditioning and back seat space. Is there some kind of site out there that fully goes over the stereo (stock of course)? Sometimes, you go to the manufactures' website and they dont even mention the damn sound system, with an exception to Lexus and Cadillac, rarely does anyone else brag about their sound systems in their vehicles. I would appreciate it if someone could name a site where they actually mention or go over a vehicle's stereo in an article of some sort.
 

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The Volvo XC90's Dolby ProLogic 5.1 system. Volvos have always had the best-sounding stereos since the mid-90s when they added Dolby Digital wiring. Sad thing is, the new ones are hard to use. Heck, my 1995 Volvo 960's Dolby Digital 8-speaker system kills my 2003 Infiniti G35's BOSE audio system! SERIOUSLY!
 

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Are you judging the sound system listening to Horowitz on the piano playing a particularly quiet passage? Or is it the 109 DbA that is being judged?
As in my other thread, I ask the question "What is the term used for those that have the huge stereos and play them full blast?". The power being created literally starts the car's sheetmetal to vibrate with every thump of the woofer.
 

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www.edmunds.com has a top 10 list they come out with every year and they also write subjective reviews dedicated to each car's stereo system every time they do a full test of a vehicle.

It's important to note that once they have listed a particular brand of sound system in a particular brand of car, they won't allow for duplicate entries. So in other words, since the Levinson in the LS430 got 1st place, even if the Levinson in another Lexus vehicle would have gotten somewhere in the top 10, they ignore it.
Top 10 stock sound systems in cars over 30,000 sticker price
Top 10 stock sound systems in cars under 30,000 sticker price

Without a doubt the best stock sound system I've ever heard was the Mark Levinson system in the LS430. The other Lexus Levinson systems supposedly sound nearly as good as well, but I haven't heard any of them.

The Nakamichi in my Lex GS4 sounds pretty darned good as well, but the Mark Lev I heard definitely had it beat in almost every respect.

Second to that was the Panasonic 5.1ch surround sound DVD-Audio system I heard in a 2004 Acura TL. With just a plain old CD it sounded good, but nothing really amazing, but wow, with DVD-A, it really woke up. That is a good thing because it means all sorts of vehicles that have been cursed wth just 'good' but not 'amazing' sounding stereos, will benefit heavily from a well-engineered 5.1ch DVD-A or SACD system as I suspect we will see popping up in more and more cars over the next 2-3 years.
 

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My 9-5 has a great 9-speaker Harman/Kardon speaker system. it's pretty decent. Not the best that I've heard, but better than my C280's Bose system.

The current STS have a rocking sound system.
 

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My 2000 Bonneville SSEi has a sweet 8 speaker Bose setup, I love blasting it. It's the best stereo system I've heard in a sedan that doesn't have an external amp powering it.

How about that THX-certified Lincoln LS? Anyone heard that?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
They are going to put that THX stereo in the Navigator pretty soon, if they already havent done it yet. I wouldnt be surprised if the THX sounds that great in the LS, the speakers are only 2-way. At the NAIAS I sat in a Lexus LX470 that has the Mark Levinson stereo, from what I heard it sounded pretty sweet.
 

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The Navigator already has a THX NAV system. Far ahead than the Escalade's BOSE is all I can say.....VERY COOL!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
The Escalade does have a pretty nice stereo regardless, 9 speaker Bose-including subwoofer, not bad at all. If you want to talk about how many speakers look no further than the Range Rover-16 Harmen Karden speakers, pretty nice I bet
 

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Originally posted by Jabroni@Apr 13 2004, 05:01 PM
The Escalade does have a pretty nice stereo regardless, 9 speaker Bose-including subwoofer, not bad at all. If you want to talk about how many speakers look no further than the Range Rover-16 Harmen Karden speakers, pretty nice I bet
At the Dallas Auto Show, they had a fully-loaded white Range Rover blasting Twista and Chingy through the system. POWERFUL bass, yet very CLEAR! Nice...
 

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More speakers most definitely does not always = better.

It's especially funny to see manufacturers referring to each seperate driver as a speaker in the quest to claim the highest number of speakers.

The most high-end audiophile systems in the world only require as many speakers as there are discreet channels. In most cars today, that is two. So the most impressive systems in the world should be able to reproduce sound using only 2 speakers (possibly consisting of an array of several drivers dedicated to various frequency ranges). Unfortunately since the automotive environment is imperfect and has multiple listeners within a tight amount of space, a second pair of speakers for the rear passengers is often times necessary.

But the myth of more speakers being better is pretty far gone. If for anything else, even if you were to have more than 4 of the same driver (one for each corner) in a vehicle and were able to ignore the cost of increasing amplifier power proportionally to the increase in drivers, you've got to realize that when you double the number of drivers while maintaining power per channel, or when you double the amount of power while maintaining the number of drivers, you only increase SPL by around 3 dB! (around a 30% gain in perceived volume).

Anyone still confused needs to go listen to the 10-speaker 500 watt Monsoon sound system in a 98+ Trans Am, and then go listen to the 3-speaker 100 watt Bose system in a 94-95 Camaro. By the numbers, most people would get very excited about the Monsoon and scoff at the Camaro, but IMO and in many other's opinion, the Bose schools the Monsoon. And heck, we're talking about BOSE here, a company that really doesn't have that great of a reputation in the audio world to begin with.
 

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<_<
Umm... OK.. seriously... THX sound system? In a car?
Is the sound equipment "THX rated?" And is the cabin itself "THX rated?" I don't know much about the THX system in autos, but you can have your THX speakers and sound system... but if the room/car cabin isn't THX certified... you don't have a THX system.

I don't consider myself a hardcore audiophile myself... but I do find it rather strange that there are DVD-A players in cars. First of all... no one knows if DVD-A is going to be the standard audio format of the future. For all we know.. it's SACD. That would date the audio system real fast.

Furthermore, I would rather have a high quality input for my iPod (or other portable msuic player) in dash. I know VW's have it. But I don't want a VW!!

Finally... "Center channel" audio. Why is that necessary in a car without a DVD player in dash? And why is it even necessary for just plain audio.

I think people should jsut be careful with what kind of audio system they get. It can get very expensive very fast... for unneeded equipment. For example... I would never get a DVD-A changer in my car. You can only get the full effect using DVD-A discs. Otherwise, it's just a glorified CD changer. :blink:
 

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Originally posted by mgescuro@Apr 14 2004, 05:55 AM
<_<
Umm... OK.. seriously...  THX sound system?  In a car?
Is the sound equipment "THX rated?"  And is the cabin itself "THX rated?"  I don't know much about the THX system in autos, but you can have your THX speakers and sound system... but if the room/car cabin isn't THX certified... you don't have a THX system.

I don't consider myself a hardcore audiophile myself... but I do find it rather strange that there are DVD-A players in cars.  First of all... no one knows if DVD-A is going to be the standard audio format of the future.  For all we know.. it's SACD.  That would date the audio system real fast.

Furthermore, I would rather have a high quality input for my iPod (or other portable msuic player) in dash.  I know VW's have it.  But I don't want a VW!!

Finally... "Center channel" audio.  Why is that necessary in a car without a DVD player in dash?  And why is it even necessary for just plain audio.

I think people should jsut be careful with what kind of audio system they get.  It can get very expensive very fast... for unneeded equipment.  For example... I would never get a DVD-A changer in my car.  You can only get the full effect using DVD-A discs.  Otherwise, it's just a glorified CD changer.  :blink:
Unfortunately, SACD transports are very expensive & I have yet to see them
for mobile applications.......

Yes, SACD has the Hybrid thing going (Dual layer CD/SACD for compatibility in CD players)......

The DVD camp did not orginally write a hybrid spec for including a CD layer. When It was added and tested, some older DVD players were confused as what to play.
The answer was Dual Disc. DVD-A layer on one side. CD-A layer on the other.
Dual Discs are currently being marketed in New York, Seattle, and LA.

All Major record labels support it, including SONY (Co-inventor of SACD).
Whats going on here? :blink:

I could debate the sonic technical differences ad nauseum between SACD and DVD-A all day......It's pointless. :argue:

Mgescuro, you are 1000% right on about why include center speaker when there is no DVD-A or DVD-V player in the car.

I'd like to see DVD-A changers in cars. IF the STS can do this, then GM can implement it across the board in a couple of years........

Mobile DVD-V players can play DVD-A discs. They just can't play DVD-A tracks. DVD-A disks include Dolby Digital tracks for regular DVD players. Again, I agree why settle for just a DD 5.1 system, and not go for the DVD-A gusto........

Yes, Dolby Digital is a lossy 96KHz 24 bit codec and sonically inferior
to DVD-A's PCM Meridan Lossless Packing codec. However DD sounds way better than a CD-A's 44.1 KHz 16 bit audio stream.

BTW, the DVD- spec includes up to 10 hours of uncompressed 16bit CD audio on one single layer disc..........

Ghrank is going to call me Ralph Wiggins again I just know it ;) ......

Ken

Yes, IPODS ARE COOL....... B)
 

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It doesn't really have to be "SACD or DVD-A"... I mean, true, right now the only production vehicle I know of that has a true DVD-A player is the Acura TL, and it doesn't support SACD. But this is most likely because the system was developed by Panasonic, the leading supporter of DVD-A which also makes them the leading denouncer of SACD (Sony's love child).

Furthermore, I have not yet come across a DVD-A and/or SACD player that wouldn't also play CDs, so that's not an issue either.

The only real issue is if users can take their DVD-A or SACD disc and then play it in their regular CD player in their friend's car. As kmacleod already said, DVD-A is now using a dual-layer hybrid technology to make this possible. I've got about 10 DVD-A discs right now that I use for home use, and about 7 of them are dual-layer... you can stick them in a plain CD player and it never knows the difference. The other 3 will only play in a DVD-A player, but I suspect this lack of a feature will become less and less common, especially with new releases.
 
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