Surround 5.1 Dolby ICE Setup For Car


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Hi Audiophiles,

recently i have traveled in sckoda Laura, which was having excellent sound quality .

even it matches my Yamaha Av Receiver 5.1 with 100w RMS each channel at home.

i was amazed to hear surround sound experience , each and every instruments was Crystal clear and it has its own sound stage and even can locate the instruments in 3 dimensions just by hearing it .

the setup was full stock , with 3 way component in each door with active crossover in it.

the HU was OEM and it also had a underseat sound Processor and Amplifier inbuilt for it [clap]


so whats my thinking was,

can we get the same effect in our cars?

just by placing a 3 way speaker setup and passively crossing over it and with a amplifier from a pricey HU wont make any difference! .


As a Audiophile i have tested and DIYed many setups and have come to an understanding , that there are many terms and many factors affects the sound quality of an system , especially in car.

factors are
1) quality of source audio (bit rate)
2) Processing unit (DSP) in HU
3) Amplifier SNR , True RMS and Frequency Response of Amplifier
4) Quality of speaker and speaker placement.
5) crossover points and distance of each speaker.


What the Scoda HU does is it has a DSP inside makes 2channel stereo audio signal to 5.1 channel surround signal.

how it does is :

it has a dolby pro logic II decoder.
front left and right - using same phase/ differential voltage signals
rear left and right - using differential phase / differential voltage signal
center - same phase / same voltage signals
LFE(sub woofer ) - taken from IIR filter programmed in DSP

what i mentioned was a bit technical, who cant understand can read below
music composers make music in surround multi channel 7.1 or 7.2 , ie for 8 or 9 speakers, each have individual tracks and sounds of instruments , mostly center has vocals, front has music , rear has surround tracks
as they do this they are easily given to screen in Theaters.

but for places like Music CD and i tunes , they will code the 7.1 audio into stereo but
from 2002 all tracks are coded in dolby DTS , where using just a stereo signal we can get back the 5.1 or 7.1 tracks back. but in lesser surround experience.

so now you can ask , why HU are not having this feature as we buy , as we use stereo as default track and why cant we get it?

answer is - manufactures concentrate on amplification and simple terms, and not all the people like only rear channel sounds coming from rear speakers.
and they only have 4 amplifiers on board. and sub out.

only few people like audiophiles spent thousands of money and buy all costly setups but fail to introduce high quality source for HU.

so make it short

i am planning to get an 5.1 dvd player and amp it to 6 channel amp and set 5.1 setup in car.

please share your thoughts and also lets decide which is the best way to get surround theater effect in car [:D]
 
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Hello stingray91

I too had pursued such a goal until i realized such an experience is difficult in a cramped space of a car,or thats what major blogs which i went through said.
I had sat in a Scorpio many years which had a seriously expensive system done by a professional, the speakers had a delay between front & back or more like an echo effect,it gave a sensation of being in a large concert hall, i loved it & never heard till date anything like that.
Frankly there are some Skodas in our group including the old L&K dint find them all that exciting.
Maybe the bitrate of the MP3 was at a good 240kbps above.
Pioneer had an upgrade for some of their amps which gave surround effect but it was stopped years ago,
DEQ-P8000 - Bring the World of Surround Sound Audio into your Vehicle with our 5.1 DSP | Pioneer Electronics USA

I also explored the fact of getting a high end amp which has world wide praise like the Macintosh (they are not made for cars anymore) , but i gave up because nothing comes to a car which has proper speaker placement & preset ability to change parameters in them, the best i have heard so far is Bose in my friends Audi Q5.
And at launch of new Volvo XC90 i was keen on taking a demo of the so far called best car music system in the world having a 19-speaker Bowers & Wilkins but i missed it because of alot of anxious people jumping into the car (later remembered how dissapointed when i was used to the Bose so no regrets),i suggest you google about the XC90 audio system (better than even the expensive S class) & you will realize nothing beats proper speaker placement.

My suggestion to you is to ask around for a proper professional even if its in another town or city near you. Then pick some decent speakers(dont waste too much money) & have custom made mounts & placements of the speakers done,buy decent connectors & cables, expensive ones claiming oxygen free do burn a big hole in the wallet. Just pick the right amps through the installer & have them tuned.
And remember in theory there is no true 5.1 or 7.1 in a car due to the closed space,your just looking at proper placement & timing the speakers.

I am very amateur in the audio world but just trying to contribute what i know.
 
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Hi buddy.
What you said was really right .
I can adjust the speaker placement distance and time correction and crossover points
Using sound processor from focal
Which is 55k

Else i need to souce a AV receiver and can use it
as player as well as a amplifier and use it to correct those things.

Shower your thoughts.
 
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Well the pioneer surround sound had a mic which you had to move around the car for it to automatically tune itself,thats what i remember.

Can you post a link to the Focal brand sound processor.

I noticed in the front rather than the doors its best to have the speakers placed facing upwards on the dash board aiming at the windscreen,yes a lot of sun light but in most cars a custom mounting needs to be tried & a hole in the dashboard.
And i would also like to try the idea of having a tiny speaker(not tweeter) mounted facing upwards on the B pillar.
And at the rear the parcel shelf is the best place to add the speaker.
As for woofer going with a 8 or 10 inch woofer is best bet for more surround sound which can be placed under front seat or below the rear seat facing the the gearbox,if its possible to without having danger or intrusion to the fuel tank.Or you can have an 8 inch woofer out somewhere in the middle & have a 12 inch or above woofer out in the back because the size of the woofer does cover different notes & universally 12 inch is suppose to cover majority of the bass.

Also proving a hard surface with dampening for the speakers in thin metal cars which is almost every car sold here now when doing these custom mounts is crucial.

There are some reputed installers here in Bangalore who let you get what audio items you want & charge you 10k for the install(I have heard),so finding a good installer who understands you & the system is key. Because i have seen fancy stores with bosses delivering sales pitch regarding brands blah blah & once you leave the car a kid from the slum will be beating & doing things on the car.
I have seen cars installed with systems worth 1.2 lakhs odd but just heavy bass or loudness. Add to that the ridiculous prices audio brands are charging.Its better to get some reasonable products & invest in a proper installer unless money is no object.
 
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Anyways i just went back to my old research i had done into a 5.1 effect & learnt some new things also.

I guess if we can get a good surround digital processor preferably 6 channel or above Digital Sound Processors | Sound Processors | Car Audio, Video & GPS at Sonic Electronix

& have a professional who has done this before work on it,then alot can be achieved!


Also picking the speakers of the right frequency & custom mounting them according to the Bang & Olufsen as in the pic below can do wonders! only change would be the boot subwoofer box with a 10 or 12 inch as the doors already have mid bass cones of 5.5 inch (referring to the 2005 Audi A8 diagram) .You will need to figure out how to wire & mount the center speakers though.
 

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Thread Starter #6
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Anyways i just went back to my old research i had done into a 5.1 effect & learnt some new things also.

I guess if we can get a good surround digital processor preferably 6 channel or above Digital Sound Processors | Sound Processors | Car Audio, Video & GPS at Sonic Electronix

& have a professional who has done this before work on it,then alot can be achieved!


Also picking the speakers of the right frequency & custom mounting them according to the Bang & Olufsen as in the pic below can do wonders! only change would be the boot subwoofer box with a 10 or 12 inch as the doors already have mid bass cones of 5.5 inch (referring to the 2005 Audi A8 diagram) .You will need to figure out how to wire & mount the center speakers though.

dear prads,

nice to see the setup of yours

the door speakers have a factory made speaker enclosure , means better bass and resonance,

if we do the same for war , the molding will be a tricky job, do you have any method to do so? .


please have a look at this product

DEQ-P8000 - Bring the World of Surround Sound Audio into your Vehicle with our 5.1 DSP | Pioneer Electronics USA

DEQ-P8000_reg.jpg

FEATURES

5.1-Channel Digital Audio Processor
Built-in Dolby® Digital / DTS™ / Dolby® Pro Logic® II* / Linear PCM Decoder
24-bit 6-Channel DAC & 6-Channel DSP
Digital Sound Control (6 modes)*
Time Alignment & Speaker Set-up Mode
4.1-Channel Down Mixing
Multi-Channel AUTO-EQ Setting (Mic Included)*
Multi-Channel AUTO-Time Alignment (0 ~ 200inch)*
MOSFET50 (50W x 5-Channel High Power)
6-channel Hi-Volt Preouts (Front L&R, Rear L&R, Center, Subwoofer) (5V)
High-Pass Crossover (HPF): 63/80/100/125/160/200Hz
Subwoofer Crossover (LPF): 63/80/100/125/160/200Hz, +/-10dB
3-Band, 3-Channel Parametric EQ (Center, Front, Rear) with 7 presets (5 fixed, 2 custom)
Listening Position Selector
Source Level Adjuster (SLA)
2 Optical Inputs (1 for DVD main units and 1 for DVD source players)
IP-Bus Input/Output
1-Day Back-up Memory
Optional Center Channel Speaker (TS-CX7) is available
Optional Multi-Channel Controller (AXM-P8000) required for use with AVIC-Z1, AVIC-N3, AVIC-N2, AVIC-N1 and AVX-P8DVD




and this is the processor i was mentioning
Alpine processor, PXA-H800
1454019481.jpg

i wrongly mentioned it as focal.

RoadEQ: Automatically applies frequency-level adjustments to cancel out road noise.

MediaXpander+: Helps digital files (like those on your iPod) sound better by compensating for frequencies compromised by the compression process.

5.1-channel surround sound: Decodes the Dolby® Digital and DTS® Surround formats when you set up a mobile movie theater in your ride. The PX-H800 can also decode Dolby Pro Logic II recordings, so you can enjoy surround sound from a stereo movie audio track.

Bi-Phantom: Uses your front left and right speakers to create a virtual center channel, which enhances vocal quality in a 5:1 surround system.

Euphony: Creates natural surround sound from stereo audio recordings, so you can enjoy surround sound tunes.
 
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The Pioneer which you posted is an old model & i had given you the link to the same before.
The Alpine which you have posted in not flexible & only works with products from their own brand.
And the Sound Stream DSP which you have posted is a decent product,has some features missing but a good product for the price,its actually a re branded item from another company.

And yes the multi speaker set up takes alot of custom molding done,There are people who do them but charge a pretty amount also.

The other budget bet which i mite take & makes sense for most is to have a 6 channel DSP like the Sound Stream you posted & mix them with good aftermarket coaxial 5.5 or 6.5 inch front door speakers(not components) & add new tweeters at the side mirror area(Maybe have some with crossovers bought from abroad).
tweeter with crossover.jpg

Rear door also have the same front door type co axial speakers added in or even smaller less powerful ones.Do not add extra tweeter anywhere in the rear.

Then on the c pillar have a speaker which can be surface mounted speaker (like in pic posted) that can be placed high like the ones shown in the Audi S3 pic rear area,You can otherwise also try squeezing in a 3.5 inch co axial speaker also if you can mount them.
surface mount speakers.jpg

You can add a 10 or 12 inch woofer in the boot.
So additional you will need a 4 channel amp to run front two doors & try splitting other two channels from it to rear door & c pillar speakers.
Monoblock amp to power the woofer.
Running these through a Digital signal processor & a professional installer who can tune the sound to give the crisp clean surround sound.

If you exclude head unit seems possible under 55000 INR.

Have given a diagram below for helping you understand.
prads  budget surround theory..jpg

So you will need
Separate Tweeter with crossover
Powerful co axial speakers for front door
Regular co axial speakers of good quality for rear door
Surface mount speakers or 3.5 inch coaxial to mount on C pillar
10 or 12 inch woofer with box
4 channel amp
monoblack amp if running the woofer
6 channel Digital soundprocessor
 
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Thread Starter #9
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Prads.
Thanks a lot for the info.

Yeah me too found the alpine was bit pricy.
But it has optical input.
So that i can use a mini pc and play my 5.1 tracks used to play in my home yamahaa setupp
In dolby surround dtshd and dts MA tracks.

Coming to sound clarity.
The sound inside car must not reflect each other.
Also shall i use underseat sub woofer
Using passive crossover makes phase change after its crossover points which can create noise
So for tweeters , i may use a filtered tweeter .

For sourround speakers
I may make one, using a jbl cx with a sony tv speaker , which has good mid response.
Mount on C pillers.

Now time correction plays a vital role here. Lets do it after installing all.

Then coming to insulation , i have started insulating the doors using
Hard PU foam sheets
Will post the diy thread soon
 
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I actually changed my mind on using underseat woofer cause of mixed reviews, & you cant go above 6 or 8 inch for under front seat,but rear seat maybe you can do better depending on what car it is.
There are underseat ready woofers for around 20000 bu the power they produce seems to be low.
As for crossovers they reduce clarity if you want to play them loud, so how loud you prefer counts.
Do educate me on the filtered tweeter option.

As for dampening have 3 layers with two outside layers of sheet & center layer of waste cloth or anything similar has best results,used in some pro install with budget. Yes dampening is the biggest leap forward,no doubt.

As for c pillar mounts i remember the Scorpio i mentioned had speakers mounted high on the rear boot area near the c pillar.

Are you planning to have center mounted speaker on the dash board??
What is the budget your looking at??

Edit - I am afraid to take interest in things as i do go overboard,so i have stopped looking into car audio :P , but never know i mite do something the next month & try it on my car,but plan to keep stock headunit & controls & let the installer use the DSP to work the magic. I already have an Old pioneer Monoblock.So should save the cost a little bit.
What is the full set up you are planning??
 
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I actually changed my mind on using underseat woofer cause of mixed reviews, & you cant go above 6 or 8 inch for under front seat,but rear seat maybe you can do better depending on what car it is.
There are underseat ready woofers for around 20000 bu the power they produce seems to be low.
As for crossovers they reduce clarity if you want to play them loud, so how loud you prefer counts.
Do educate me on the filtered tweeter option.

As for dampening have 3 layers with two outside layers of sheet & center layer of waste cloth or anything similar has best results,used in some pro install with budget. Yes dampening is the biggest leap forward,no doubt.

As for c pillar mounts i remember the Scorpio i mentioned had speakers mounted high on the rear boot area near the c pillar.

Are you planning to have center mounted speaker on the dash board??
What is the budget your looking at??

Edit - I am afraid to take interest in things as i do go overboard,so i have stopped looking into car audio :P , but never know i mite do something the next month & try it on my car,but plan to keep stock head unit & controls & let the installer use the DSP to work the magic. I already have an Old pioneer Mono block .So should save the cost a little bit.
What is the full set up you are planning??
im gonna use in wagonr stingray , where the area is bit low, also i have very low end bass, im alergic to it, ie <50hz

so 8 inch custom under seat sub woofer will be quite well if i use two of them under both seats.
in my area they charge 1550 Rs. for good quality enclosure.

if you use waste cloth , it will soak in water , and make bad odor, i tried but failed, as water was soaking and making bad smell after car parked a while.
so i removed and now using Hard PU foam sheet 10mm , sticking it with synthetic rubber adhesive ,
and i planning to fill the rest area with foam spray , and closing the inner door layer(metal) with big foam sheet as climate shield and making a tight pack between door and plastic door panel . foam sheet was 800 rs 20sqft
did for 1 door, bass was tighter and door closing sound was like a thud instead of thurrd !

yea i am planning to use a center speaker , gonna using a 3 inch tv speaker with 2 dome tweeter in a single casing , slim pack, custom shape!

coming to filters and crossovers.

crossover split audio signal into two or three frequency scale.
filters are inbuilt things present inside a speaker or tweeter , ie a stand alone tweeter has a filter inside, so it can produce the audio frequency it can produce ,
for tweeters they either use inductor in parallel or capacitor in series

for mids they use a combination of inductor and capacitor

lows they use 1000uf cap in parallel to audio line.

only difference between filters and crossovers,

if you use filters for each audio range, components must be in series connection, if u use separate filter for tweeter and separate filter for low range woofer, the capacitor comes in parallel, so it affects the input signal from amp.
if u use two separate channel for each speaker its okay, but single channel amped up line to 3 speakers with 3 filters its not gonna work, each filter affect other filters response.

but crossover is it takes single audio line and splits to 2 or 3 freq range! but costlier to make.

as filters are simple capacitors and inductors , even you can make it , buying parts from local store.

my setup is ,

dvd player or mini pc ,with optical audio out , linked with audio processor and 2 (4 channel jbl Amp) (8 channel)
stock HU as it is!
thats it :p
 
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so 8 inch custom under seat sub woofer will be quite well if i use two of them under both seats.
in my area they charge 1550 Rs. for good quality enclosure.
I guess you can go with one under left seat,just have the box interior size calculated & try for a ventilated set up. Kenwood has a 8 inch woofer. You can add amps or DSl under driver seat. Speakers | Car Electronics | KENWOOD India

if you use waste cloth , it will soak in water , and make bad odor, i tried but failed, as water was soaking and making bad smell after car parked a while.
so i removed and now using Hard PU foam sheet 10mm , sticking it with synthetic rubber adhesive ,
and i planning to fill the rest area with foam spray , and closing the inner door layer(metal) with big foam sheet as climate shield and making a tight pack between door and plastic door panel . foam sheet was 800 rs 20sqft
did for 1 door, bass was tighter and door closing sound was like a thud instead of thurrd !
Yes thats a good way to do it then,I have used the waste cloth method in my Swift had no fungus odour issues, but yes by using the sheet method you get better insulation, Please do post some pics & link if you create a thread on it, so i can get a better idea & i can have it done using similar or same materials.

yea i am planning to use a center speaker , gonna using a 3 inch tv speaker with 2 dome tweeter in a single casing , slim pack, custom shape!
Well you can try sourcing a single car speaker from a car audio store also,they will have many old ones where one would have failed & other is proper, but if you want some tips on wiring a center channel speaker then posting a link How To - Car Stereo - How To Install A Center Channel

my setup is ,

dvd player or mini pc ,with optical audio out , linked with audio processor and 2 (4 channel jbl Amp) (8 channel)
stock HU as it is!
thats it :p
So your planning to get a car pc setup, are you planing to get a 8 channel DSP??? Dint get what the 8 channel was about?
If your looking at 8 channel DSP then only few available & very expensive i guess.
What about the speakers??
 
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, Please do post some pics & link if you create a thread on it, so i can get a better idea
Yeah sure, will post as a separate thread after completion.



Well you can try sourcing a single car speaker from a car audio store also,they will have many old ones where one would have failed & other is proper, but if you want some tips on wiring a center channel speaker then posting a link How To - Car Stereo - How To Install A Center Channel
Actually i am getting center channel audio from pc ie from 5.1 tracks
And dsp will create center channel audio using pro logic II

As i am playing 5.1 tracks, pc sends 6 channel audio signal in LPCM or PCM in dts or dolby digital format in 192khz , i can use a optical to 5.1 audio spitter and do time correction and all sort off crazy things in pc itself. Bbut i tried in my pc in home theater. Nothing comes equal to a dsp chip rather than onboard audio processor in pc.
Where it spends 90% load in playing tracks.
If i make some software to time correct and set filters for each track it cant handle it.

So using a standalone dedicated dsp processor makes difference.




So your planning to get a car pc setup, are you planing to get a 8 channel DSP??? Dint get what the 8 channel was about?
If your looking at 8 channel DSP then only few available & very expensive i guess.
What about the speakers??[
The sound processor i ment was the DSP.
All sound processor have configarable 8 Channel.
It can either get a stereo input form HU and process it to 5.1 ie 6 channel where you can configure the 6 channels to the dsp 8 channel as u like and crossover points as you like asoutput.
But in some cases
Ppl use 2 channel stereo and use those left and right signals to 3+3 channel in dsp and take 3 channel for left and 3 channel for right. And set cutt frequency and use it for 3 way components and bi amp it( not using the crossover from manufacturer ) and digitally crossing over to get good effect and no phase change problems in passive crossover.

Speakers i have to decide after setting the doors and pc and processor.
And amplifier.

I need to anti echo my car panels to get more effect, ie plastic panels need a material coated or sticked .
Mostly roufgh material or wool type. Ie roof lining type material. So sound will get absorbed and i can clearly hear sounds from individual speakers.
To be frank. This trick makes theaters sound better.!
 
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Well all this digging around for the perfect set up & wiring has me confused more than ever,
Today consulted with a few car audio installers,some dont do DSP install & tuning ,
A top installer who also did the Scorpio i mentioned said they would do it for me but i need to double my budget,they have done various DSP installs. I noticed they add components to rear door & front & extra speakers are provided on the A Pillar. Their idea is proper tuning should be enough to imitate clean sound without center channel speakers or any extra speakers.

The other car accessories store who is my regular guy carries alot of the same high end audio but is willing to be reasonable with my budget & also try for the multi speaker set up (If amp can handle it) ,but told me the 5.1 set up they have done is using 4 channel amp for four doors,mono block for the woofer & a 2 channel bridged for the center dash or center mirror mounted speaker.

So what i have decided for now is to keep the speaker set up simple with 4 door components/co axial & a woofer,i have decided on the 6 channel Kicker front row Digital signal processor.
IF the DSP can do its job then there is no better feeling, if it leaves me underwhelmed (after trying more tuning)then am gonna leave it as it & wait for another new car to come along & try another installer with a bigger budget also more experienced.

What is the DSP you have decided on,or you trying software method with 5.1 audio splitter? assuming you find a way to not overload the car pc.

Have to say really enjoying this discussion & learning new things as I never met any one before who wanted a surround sound in the car,maybe because people dont know what it sounds like.[music]

And you really need to get your dampening up to a level because my friend has a Wagon R,even the stock speakers would make his number plates vibrate & knowing Maruti would have cut costs i assume your car also feels same way(no offence).

By when are you planning the install ?
 
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