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Car Audio System Upgrade Knowledge for Beginners

Written by the Merchandise Development Team
Tuesday, 20 March 2012, 11:30

In terms of the car audio system upgrade, the head unit, the power amplifier and the speakers is an organism. They supplement, restrict and promote each other. Understanding the basic knowledge of these three elements will help a beginner achieve expected good results on the car stereo modification or upgrade. The upgraded car audio system will bring a person fresh and astounding feeling, if the respective characteristics of each above element are taken into consideration in the phase of the car audio system upgrade design.

People that need to modify or upgrade their car stereo systems are mostly fanciers with strict requirements on the musical effects of a car radio. Before the upgrading process, these fanciers are supposed to know the Cask principle.

During the selection process of the head unit, the power amplifier and the speakers to match each other, people may choose the parts according to their own style. However, the balance of the three major parts is also needed to be paid attention to, as the Cask principle will limit the final output effects of the car radio system.

Generally speaking, it is better to divide some budget or funds to support speakers and power amplifier upgrade, unless that your initial modification plan is for a further car audio system upgrade in the near future. However, chances are that users do no know how the Cask principle influences the whole auto radio upgrade plans. For example, a user from Guangzhou bought a US DB car stereo, which is well known as the rock music hallow. However, there was not any improvement on the output quality compared with the original car radio, except for the powerful bass promotion. With a careful study of the upgraded auto radio system, we found out the reasons. The audio output source did not modified at all, but only adopted a digital power amplifier IC and increased the speaker power to 70W*4, which finally made the sound quality not satisfied at all. With the unreasonable collocation and incorrect debugs, the poor output sound quality and resolution are quite common in a car audio system upgrade. Therefore, the overall balance needs to be taken into account when considering the equipment collocation. Our recommended budget ratio is 20: 30:25: 15:10 for the head unit, front-and-back speakers, power amplifier, bass and wires. However, this ratio is not fixed. It is flexible to adjustments for different needs and expectation for a car radio upgrade.

Below is the consideration of the three major components.

1. The head unit.

The unit head is the entire audio sources, and also serves as a control center. All sound operations are realized and controlled through the head unit. It is recommended to select a head unit of auto radio by the five important aspects: sound quality, functions, stability on sound quality, price and appearance.

2. The speakers or amplifiers.

A speaker is important to the final output of an original car audio system. Just like the singer’s voice, a sweet voice will produce fantastic sound output. The role of the speakers is to convert audio electrical signal to a sound signal and let the signal radiates in the surrounding medium. The most common design for car speakers is the tapered design. This is because of the space limitation inside the vehicle for car stereo installation. The tapered design makes it possible to expand the effective area of the diaphragm, and this effective area determines the low frequency response of the speaker. In other words, the tapered design can enhance the bass effect if a car radio system without the installation of bass case.

3. The Power amplifier.

Power amplifiers of a car audio can be classified as a pre-amplifier, a power amplifier and an integrated amplifier. A pre-amplifier is connected between the audio source and the power amplifier. A power amplifier is connected to the speaker, which drives the speakers. An integrated amplifier is the combination of a pre-amplifier and a power amplifier.

The role of a pre-amplifier is to amplify the initial voice signal from the head unit, including the initial removal of interference signals, optimization and integration of information. It amplifies the voltage and makes the audio signal modification, such as the balance adjustment and so on. A power amplifier again enlarges the signal power and outputs the signal to the terminals of speakers or amplifiers. An integrated power amplifier is to mount the previous stage circuit and a back stage circuit in an enclosure, or makes the two stages of the circuit into a piece of circuit board.

The car audio system upgrade is very personalized. It is the existence of right taste, like some kind of style. Never forget the Cask principle which will influence the final output of the car stereo upgrade.

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 20 March 2012, 19:30