Ok everybody, I need some advice, rather than ask what is the best equipment for blah blah blah, I figured I would tell you what vehicle I have, what I want to achieve and what gear I have on hand or am considering purchasing and get some opinions.
My vehicle: 2003 cadillac CTS
My goal: mostly sound quality. I don't compete and never will, so that caliber is
not what I want. I do spent a lot of time in my car, and I love music. I
listen to everything from Billy Joel to Metalica to Miranda Lambert to
Jay Z. I like hard driving bass, subtle tweeters and CLARITY.
My gear on hand:
Stock caddy head unit. Bose system, integrated nav and XM. 6 disc in dash.
This unit is way too integrated into the car to replace.
Polk Audio db6501 comp set, bnib.
Polk Audio db651 coax, bnib
Assorted raw drivers from parts express. This includes 6.5 Dayton's, HiVi
and some odds and ends buyouts and tweeters. All are matching pairs.
2-Sundown SA 12 D4's, bnib
2-T3 T.200 12's
2-MB Quart ONX480 4 channel, used but mint
American Bass SQ475 4 channel, used but mint
PAC PDLC81 8 channel line driver, bnib
DC Power 300 amp alternator
Big 3 and Kinetic HTC800 battery already installed.
I will be using all factory speaker locations. I have tweets in the a-pillars, 6.5's front doors and 6.5 coaxes in the rear doors. The car has a center channel which i can't get to to remove or replace and I don't know the size. The factory sub in the rear deck is gone. I have a bunch of sound deadening material. Mostly raamat and ensolite. Also have a bunch of acoustic foam and a roll of this stuff:
dB-4looring 4 ft. x 25 ft. Flooring Acoustical Underlayment-DB448X25IBX at The Home Depot
Option 1: old school style. Install the Polk stuff in factory locations. Use the
MB Quart amps for front & rear, the SQ475 for the Sundown subs.
Use the PAC line driver to integrate head unit. Use factory center
channel. If I don't like it, then disconnect it and go on. If I'm not
happy with the sound, I can swap in some raw drivers and play
around until I'm happy.
Option 2: go active. If I go this route, I will buy an MS-8 and do as I stated
above in option 1. I have used the MB Quart amps with MB Quart
comp sets. For me, the tweets were too harsh and mid bass was
lacking. I have never used the American Bass amp, so I don't
know the sound quality, especially compared to the MB Quart
I have though about buying an American Bass VFL2680 to run the subs and getting another SQ475 to use for the rear stage. Or getting 2 Kenwood XR4's and a Kenwood XR1.
So...what is everyone's opinion? Does anyone know about the American Bass or Kenwood amps? Or how does the MB Quart amps compare to others when it comes to clarity/sound quality? Are there better options for amps around the same price point?
And the big question: will I notice enough difference with the MS8 to justify buying it? The thing that has me leaning towards MS8 is the ease of use/set up. It does auto time alignment which may be very difficult for me to do manually using other active type crossovers.