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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 11:12 AM Thread Starter
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Boston Acoustics Help

Contacted a Jeep rep. He told me I have the setup that has the 6 Boston Acoustics speakers and Amp. I wanted to do a full speaker swap as my speakers in the 2nd row are blown however I have no idea what kind of speakers I need to buy. Also plan on replacing the head unit. Lastly will I need to get a new amp as well? Any help is appreciated!
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 11:33 AM
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The Boston Acoustics Factory Option is a good system, if you buy cheap aftermarket replacements that are barely better than the base cheap OEM stereo equipment, you might find it is a downgrade.

The problem with the 6 speaker setup, and I might be wrong for the Boston Acoustics setup, is that they are NOT component speakers, the front 4 speakers that have matched impedance with a hi-pass filter on the smaller ones. In other cars I have used 3" speakers with Hi-Pass filters and just connected them to the existing wiring with adapters, and it worked well. A better setup is using a component system with the tweeter in the spot for the smaller speaker, that will require install the cross-over somewhere and lot of extra wiring and NOT using the existing wiring.

The factory amp will NOT work with aftermarket head units. It is possible if you purchase a 3rd Party CAN Bus Translator to retain some controls on the Factory AMP, but NOT all. I think Fader is at least one feature you loose if you keep a factory amp and use a 3rd Party CAN bus translator.

You could replace all of it, get a new aftermarket amp to go with the aftermarket head unit and all new speakers. That would work very well. You would still need a 3rd Party CAN Bus translator to have the stereo to continue to play when you remove the key and for the steering wheel controls to work.

You could skip the amp and just use the aftermarket head unit amp, but that would be a downgrade from the factory amp.

I have component speakers up front, with the tweeters in the spot of the smaller speaker, it very nice. I would consider that for an upgrade to Boston Acoustic Speakers.

I have Polk Audio Speakers, component front, composite rear. I love them, and bet they out do the Boston Acoustics, but I have not compared them, so I don't know for sure.


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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 11:35 AM
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This may be some help for speakers.

https://www.jeepcommander.com/forums/...highlight=Polk


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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 11:48 AM Thread Starter
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I appreciate your quick and very detailed response. So would it be 6x9's in the front and 6.5's in the second row still? I have no idea where the last set of speakers are or what size they would be.
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 01:20 PM
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The Boston System is actually quite a good system. Of course it's just my opinion, but I like the Boston system in the Commander better than most any factory premium stereo I've had. I've had two Bose systems, two Infinity systems, two JBL Pro systems and two generic premium systems, and put the Boston and the JBL up at the top.

The front sound stage is a component system. The 6x9 door speakers are low passed at the factory amp to act as subwoofers. I've heard the crossover is around 400hz, but it sounds lower than that to me; maybe 200hz. The dash speakers are 3.5" and crossed over with a high pass at the amplifier. The rear doors use 6.5" full range speakers with whizzer cone tweeters.

The Boston speakers are basic treated paper cone speakers, but they are well built. I found the clarity slightly lacking up front and especially in the rear doors, and opted to upgrade the speakers.

Mopar teamed with Kicker to make an aftermarket drop-in replacement set of speakers for the Commander as well as a drop-in replacement amp. Personally, I like the EQ of the factory amp, so I just changed out the speakers to the Kickers. These speakers require no special adapters or plugs as they are made specifically for our vehicles, so it's as simple as unplugging the old speakers and plugging these in. The new speakers are a composite cone with dome tweeters for the dash speakers and the rear doors. The front 6x9s are full cone, which you can't find in any aftermarket solution, so you'll get better bass response than your typical 2 or 3 way (generalizing).

Anyway, I found the Kicker drop in replacements to not only be incredibly easy and well integrated, but also matched impedence (2-ohm up front, 4ohm rear) to the original system and well paired to the Boston Acoustics amplifier. The clarity is improved as well as the clarity and smoothness of the bass. I also added a dynamat-type door kit at the same time which helped a lot as well.

If you want a little more bass in a clean package just to round out the lower end, I would recommend the Rockford Fosgate P300-10, following the Mopar-Kicker install documentation for the Kicker sub, which is no longer produced.

The part numbers for these upgrade speakers are 77KICK10 for the rear doors (well reviewed and popular for the wrangler) and 77KICK11 for the front soundstage. I highly recommend them for a really easy and well integrated upgrade to the already good Boston system.

All this information pertains to an inexpensive but significant upgrade in sound quality rather than ripping out everything and starting from scratch. If you do want to change your headunit as well, follow Mongo's advice. If you choose to not use the Boston Amp and don't upgrade to the Kicker amp either, you will want to use a dedicated component system up front and rewire it as the factory amp contains all the crossover circuitry.

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Last edited by Schlotzky; 11-17-2015 at 01:23 PM.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 11-17-2015, 01:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BurghXK View Post
I appreciate your quick and very detailed response. So would it be 6x9's in the front and 6.5's in the second row still? I have no idea where the last set of speakers are or what size they would be.
It might be different on the BA system, but it should be close.

Front Dashboard 2.75" speakers (should fit 3.5" speakers, not sure though)
Front Doors 6X9" speakers
Rear Doors 6.75" speakers

You can go to crutchfields.com and find equipment and adapters for all this stuff.

Do NOT get wrapped around the axle about the 6x9" speakers, my Polk Audio 6.5" (which are really 6.75") speakers kick the butt of those factory 6X9" and many good speakers the 6.5/6.75" version is just as good if NOT better than a 6X9 of the same model line.

They also have wiring adapters, you connect to the speaker and then plug into the existing wiring of the car.

Remember the typical 6 speaker system in cars, is NOT a component system, they merely make 4 of the 6 speakers look like a component system, by wiring two speakers in parallel and using a Hi-Pass Filter. Replacing that 4 speaker setup with a component system will sound so much better, but will require a lot of additional wiring. If you just replace them with better speakers, as long as you use a good Hi-Pass filter on the smaller dash speaker it should work and sound a little better. (A Hi-Pass Filter is just a capacitor wired in series on the positive side, it will pass long higher frequencies to the smaller speaker and block lower frequencies that will just come out of the bigger speaker. That is how you can turn up the volume and NOT blow out the smaller speaker, nor is the front mismatched with the rear cause of the watts go into the lower frequencies, so the higher ones going to both speakers, but lower going to only the big speaker doesn't throw off the impedance that much.


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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-14-2016, 08:55 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Schlotzky View Post
The Boston System is actually quite a good system. Of course it's just my opinion, but I like the Boston system in the Commander better than most any factory premium stereo I've had. I've had two Bose systems, two Infinity systems, two JBL Pro systems and two generic premium systems, and put the Boston and the JBL up at the top.

The front sound stage is a component system. The 6x9 door speakers are low passed at the factory amp to act as subwoofers. I've heard the crossover is around 400hz, but it sounds lower than that to me; maybe 200hz. The dash speakers are 3.5" and crossed over with a high pass at the amplifier. The rear doors use 6.5" full range speakers with whizzer cone tweeters.

The Boston speakers are basic treated paper cone speakers, but they are well built. I found the clarity slightly lacking up front and especially in the rear doors, and opted to upgrade the speakers.

Mopar teamed with Kicker to make an aftermarket drop-in replacement set of speakers for the Commander as well as a drop-in replacement amp. Personally, I like the EQ of the factory amp, so I just changed out the speakers to the Kickers. These speakers require no special adapters or plugs as they are made specifically for our vehicles, so it's as simple as unplugging the old speakers and plugging these in. The new speakers are a composite cone with dome tweeters for the dash speakers and the rear doors. The front 6x9s are full cone, which you can't find in any aftermarket solution, so you'll get better bass response than your typical 2 or 3 way (generalizing).

Anyway, I found the Kicker drop in replacements to not only be incredibly easy and well integrated, but also matched impedence (2-ohm up front, 4ohm rear) to the original system and well paired to the Boston Acoustics amplifier. The clarity is improved as well as the clarity and smoothness of the bass. I also added a dynamat-type door kit at the same time which helped a lot as well.

If you want a little more bass in a clean package just to round out the lower end, I would recommend the Rockford Fosgate P300-10, following the Mopar-Kicker install documentation for the Kicker sub, which is no longer produced.

The part numbers for these upgrade speakers are 77KICK10 for the rear doors (well reviewed and popular for the wrangler) and 77KICK11 for the front soundstage. I highly recommend them for a really easy and well integrated upgrade to the already good Boston system.

All this information pertains to an inexpensive but significant upgrade in sound quality rather than ripping out everything and starting from scratch. If you do want to change your headunit as well, follow Mongo's advice. If you choose to not use the Boston Amp and don't upgrade to the Kicker amp either, you will want to use a dedicated component system up front and rewire it as the factory amp contains all the crossover circuitry.

Thank you for this input! The only Kicker upgrade package I can find is part# 77kick11AB. Not sure what the 'AB' stands for but it looks to be the correct part#.
Do you know the impediance of the front 3.5 front and 6.5 rear speakers? I'm not a big fan of the hard dome tweeter but they may sound ok in this instance.
Is the replacement kicker amp much of an upgrade in power? Any part# for it?
Also looking for the part# for the no longer made kicker subwoofer.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 11:21 AM
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Again, the BA setup might be different, the amp may dive all 6 speakers individually.

But, in most cars, the 6 speaker setup is the front four having two speakers wired in parallel with a hi-pass filter on the smaller speaker.

So two speaker wired in parallel will result in a different impedance than the speakers are rated. Generally its half the impedance of a single speaker. i.e. two 4ohm speaker wired in parallel results in a total of 2ohms impedance for the circuit. btw, opposite for wired in series, two 4ohm speakers wired in series results in 8ohms of impedance for the circuit.

I don't know, but suspect, the two OEM speakers wired in parallel are designed to do that and thus have different than typical impedance, designed to equate the typical 4ohm impedance after being wired in parallel with the hi-pass filter. i.e. they may be 8 or 16ohm speakers, with the larger speaker having a higher impedance at high freqs.

I remember doing a little research when replacing the 6 speaker setup on my Neon R/T. Using a hi-pass filter on the small speaker will result in no energy passing to the smaller speaker in the lower frequencies, where the real load on the amp is. So, the big and small speaker wired in parallel resulted in 4ohm impedance except for the higher frequencies, that likely dropped to 2ohm, but less energy passes through the speakers at those frequencies and thus wasn't that much extra load on the amp. If I hadn't used the hi-pass filter on the smaller amp, then I would have had a 2ohm impedance on the amp and the results might have been much different.

For my Commander, I got component speakers for the front. It was like Night and Day in the sound quality. Of course I did NOT have the BA system to compare it too. Installing the component system looks great in the vehicle, can't tell its there, but it was extra wiring and a pain to find spots to hide the cross-over.

Soft vs Hard domed tweeters is beyond my knowledge on stereos. I'm good with the electrical engineering concepts, so I do have something to contribute, but I'm far from a hi-fi expert.


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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-15-2016, 11:28 AM
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I have seen internet How-To's, where folks take an aftermarket speaker that has a coaxial woofer and tweeter, remove the tweeter and place it in the location of the small speaker and woofer in the place of the large speaker, connect the wiring between them, cap the hole left in the large speaker cone, too create a poor man's component speaker. This way the load is a balanced 4ohm speaker, no different than if they hadn't taken it apart and split the location of the two speakers. You might note, aftermarket speakers with coaxial woofer/tweeters have capacitor wired into the tweeter circuit to be a hi-pass filter.

I'm "GUESSING" this is what the OEM does in car 6 speaker systems. He has a matched woofer and tweeter, with a hi-pass filter on the tweeter, designed from the ground up too work as a match set wired in parallel. Just like an aftermarket coaxial speaker with woofer/tweeter is designed to work together for a total combined 4ohm impedance. You start trying to match stand alone 4ohm speakers in parallel you're NOT going to get the right load and inconsistent results, even blown speakers or amps.

Like I said, I put a hi-pass filter on the smaller speaker (using two 4ohm independent aftermarket speakers, one large, one small) and that resulted in a fair system that didn't blow.


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