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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
For Elite & Touring Owners, having the 540w Stereo: List and discuss your Stereo upgrades (or questions about upgrading), in here.

NOTE:
I also made a thread for the Basic 150w Stereo for those of you wishing to discuss issues regarding those models.

I'll go first, made a trip to a local Stereo store and they told me that they have upgraded two Passports in the last few months.

The latest Passport owner bought the Infinity REF-6530cx component speakers but the OEM 540w Amp was too under-powered to properly drive them, so they swapped them out two sets of Focal 165as and those sounded awesome and the Passport owner was super happy!

So I ordered two pairs of the Focal 165AS and will replace the front and rear Tweeters and the front & rear door Mid-Range/Woofers

Here is the Crutchfield link to the speakers I ordered, they have really great reviews:

As for what it's going to cost: well for two sets of these speakers, Installation, Dynamat in all four doors, and tax, it came to $800. (Which I thought was a pretty good deal, since the Focal speakers alone are $760 from Crutchfield).

Anyway, they had to order them and I will have them installed on Nov 16th, so I will update this thread after installation.
 

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Have me waiting like.....
 

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For Elite & Touring Owners, having the 550w Stereo: List and discuss your Stereo upgrades (or questions about upgrading), in here.

NOTE:
I also made a thread for the Basic 150w Stereo for those of you wishing to discuss issues regarding those models.

I'll go first, made a trip to a local Stereo store and they told me that they have upgraded two Passports in the last few months.

The latest Passport owner bought the Infinity REF-6530cx component speakers but the OEM 550w Amp was too under-powered to properly drive them, so they swapped them out two sets of Focal 165as and those sounded awesome and the Passport owner was super happy!

So I ordered two pairs of the Focal 165AS and will replace the front and rear Tweeters and the front & rear door Mid-Range/Woofers

Here is the Crutchfield link to the speakers I ordered, they have really great reviews:

As for what it's going to cost: well for two sets of these speakers, Installation, Dynamat in all four doors, and tax, it came to $800. (Which I thought was a pretty good deal, since the Focal speakers alone are $760 from Crutchfield).

Anyway, they had to order them and I will have them installed on Nov 16th, so I will update this thread after installation.
Are you going to stick with the factory sub?
 

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I'll be very interested to hear how you like the new set up with the four Focals.
Not sure what I'm going to do but based on what I've heard in the forum from you, Storm, etc - leaning towards upgrading as well, though I think I'd like to go all the way adding a Focal sub and perhaps the center. Do you think the factory amp would handle that?
Also, have you had the ANC disconnected? If you don't add a new sub it might not be necessary.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
It's all a crap shoot (just spent the last 3-days in Vegas - drove the Passport!) until I hear the new set-up.

At first I was just going to add new high quality co-axials in all four doors, but after hearing Storms thoughts and talking to my Car Stereo guy, I did not want to add four more tweeters to the front two tweeters and the rear two mid-range tweeters, that could cause some serious problems with the phasing and imaging of the highs.

The current Elite/Touring set-up has several strong points:
(1) It has a pretty darn good sub-woofer, which "my guy" recommended keeping, it has plenty enough punch for my taste.
(2) The OEM layout is VERY well blended, which I may lose when going with the Focals, But, I am reasonably sure that the Highs, Mid-range and Bass will all sound better!

The plan is to put the two rear Focal tweeters where the current (rear) Mid-ranges are. The Focal Crossovers have three settings: Flat, +3db and -3db, so they sound be able to dial in the tweeters.

What is not known, is how the 540 watts are distributed, if the sub gets 100w (not sure), then is the remaining 440w distributed to the other nine speakers (@ 50w)? But the Sub could be getting 150w and the Center channel only 25w, which might mean less per channel, but the tweeters don't need 50w, running through a crossover.

So, I don't know, I'm just putting my faith in the shop, to give me something better sounding than stock...

stay tuned...
 

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Can’t give you advice, however, there were two Passports in Vegas!
I drove over on Friday for the 6 year old nephews birthday which is tomorrow, and probably back to HB on Wednesday!
 

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It's all a crap shoot (just spent the last 3-days in Vegas - drove the Passport!) until I hear the new set-up.

At first i was just going to add new high quality co-axials in all four doors, but after hearing Storms thoughts and talking to my Car Stereo guy, I did not want to add four more tweeters to the front two tweeters and the rear two mid-range tweeters, that could cause some serious problems with the phasing and imaging of the highs.

The current Elite/Touring set-up has several strong points:
(1) It has a pretty darn good sub-woofer, which "my guy" recommended keeping, it has plenty enough punch for my taste.
(2) The OEM layout is VERY well blended, which I may lose when going with the Focals, But, I am reasonably sure that the Highs, Mid-range and Bass will all sound better!

The plan is to put the two rear Focal tweeters where the current (rear) Mid-ranges are. The Focal Crossovers have three settings: Flat, +3db and -3db, so they sound be able to dial in the tweeters.

What is not known, is how the 550 watts are distributed, if the sub gets 100w (not sure), then is the remaining 450w distributed to the other nine speakers (@ 50w)? But the Sub could be getting 150w and the Center channel only 25w, which might mean less per channel, but the tweeters don't need 50w, running through a crossover.

So, I don't know, I'm just putting my faith in the shop, to give me something better sounding than stock...

stay tuned...
OK, great. Keep us posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Hey Steve, don't mean to bug you but did you ever get those Focals installed?
Not buggin...!

Anyway, I got them installed last Saturday and while they sound incredible, there is an issue, they need to go through a burn-in period to achieve the best possible sound, it seems the voice-coils need time to adjust. It said it on the Focal website, my Salesman told me the same thing, and I even called Focal USA today and their Tech Support explained it to me.

So as nice as they sound, they supposedly will sound even better at some point down the road. The bass is awesome, super clear and punchy (not boomy) midrange is good to but the highs are over-powering, but again all indications are that this will even out at some point. I am VERY impressed at how well the OEM (540w) Honda 10-channel amp powers the new (4ohm) speakers. Also the installer did an AWESOME job, the four doors look perfectly stock, the rear tweeters fit behind the existing midrange/tweeters and the front tweeters fit in the stock location, with the little "Focal" emblem showing.

Stay tuned for further updates as things change!
 

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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
HERE IS MY RECOMMENDATION FOR ANYONE WANTING TO VASTLY IMPROVE THEIR TOURING/ELITE STEREOS:

I got see the 2ohm woofers that were removed from the doors and YES, they are quite whimpy! The Touring and Elite system is well designed but the speakers are the weakest point. For anyone wanting to improve their listening experience, I would highly recommend upgrading these (8) speakers:
1) The front Tweeters (on the A-Pillers),
2) The rear midrange/tweeters (in the C-Pillers, on the upper rear side panels)
3) The four door speakers (Woofers)

Also NEW wires need to be run from the Crossover (which is typically mounted in the doors, near the woofers) to the new Tweeters - DO NOT USE THE EXISTING WIres as they bypass the Crossover and will not sound right! Also you will need to add some sound deadening materials in the doors - at least around the new woofers.

For optimum sound and the best possible balance and sound-stage: the four tweeters should be the same and the front and rear door woofers should be the same. I recommend separate components with an ADJUSTABLE crossover (this will allow you to customize the tweeter sound to what you like best. Now you do not need to get the (nearly $400 per pair) that I did, but remember the old adage: "you get what you pay for" as it is very true when it comes to speakers!

I recommend getting them professionally installed as well, and checking out Crutchfield, you can load in that you have a 2019 Passport and search for "Component Speakers". Sort from "LOW-to-HIGH Price" and scroll through all your options. Read the reviews, look at specs, it's fun and free!

Several things to be careful with; first, is that you do not want to get a speaker that requires much more that 50 watts, as the OEM Amp is probably rated in the 40-50 watts range (this is just my educated guess). Also look for speakers that have a high Sensitivity, the higher they are the louder they will be (basically 95db is better than 88db - due to the limited power (watts) the OEM Amp puts out). And since the OEM speakers are 2 ohms, I would go with 2-4ohms as again, this has to do with how well the OEM Amp will drive the replacement speakers!

If you are looking for a low-cost upgrade, consider the JBL 601C, they have an adjustable crossover and @ $80/pair, you will hear the difference. The Infinity PR6510CS are also another excellent choice at only 10 bucks more ($90).

Going up a bit @ $135, the JBL 6500C will sound even better! @ the same price are the Morel Maximo 6, they have a huge amount of positives and this brand also makes super expensive speakers, and are a reputable automotive speaker company.

Farther up at $150 is the Infinity REF6530cx, which is much better than any of the lower priced units mentioned.

At the $200 range: the Morel Ultra 602 ($215) is a rockin' good choice...! as is the even better Morel Maximus 602 ($242) also the Focal 165 YE @ $250 is a great deal at a huge discount!

Higher still is the Infinity Kappa 60csx, @ $263, I'm sure these would sound pretty great!

When you scroll up to the $379 price point, you'll see the Focal Performance 165AS speakers that I bought, probably overkill for most, but what can I say, except I like my music!

Now, if you sort from High-to-Low-Price at Crutchfield, you'll find a set of Morel speakers selling for $5,000, you'll probably need an Amp for these...lol There are also a number of Components sets in the $500 to $2,000 price range, if you want to impress...

If you buy the speakers from Crutchfield you can still have a local shop or Best Buy install them.

Any questions, please feel to ask...

cheers
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Another thing: my installer had to cut the original (door) speakers to remove the mounting brackets (I did not see what was removed, but I do have one of the OEM speakers). The removed mounting brackets were used to mount the new speakers. So others may need to do this as well or perhaps there are after market brackets that places like Crutchfield sells to the self-installers.
 

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Another thing: my installer had to cut the original (door) speakers to remove the mounting brackets (I did not see what was removed, but I do have one of the OEM speakers). The removed mounting brackets were used to mount the new speakers. So others may need to do this as well or perhaps there are after market brackets that places like Crutchfield sells to the self-installers.
Might be something with the way Honda designs their sound systems. I know when I had it done in my 17 Ridgeline the installer had to destroy the factory speakers in order to install the new Memphis Audio speakers that replaced them.
Have you noticed any change yet in the new Focals or are they still getting "burned in"? Also, I know you like the factory sub, I was curious as to why you chose not to do anything different with the center speaker - were you advised not to mess with it or that is wasn't necessary to change it out? Just trying to gather as much info as possible. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #14 (Edited)
Might be something with the way Honda designs their sound systems. I know when I had it done in my 17 Ridgeline the installer had to destroy the factory speakers in order to install the new Memphis Audio speakers that replaced them.
Have you noticed any change yet in the new Focals or are they still getting "burned in"? Also, I know you like the factory sub, I was curious as to why you chose not to do anything different with the center speaker - were you advised not to mess with it or that is wasn't necessary to change it out? Just trying to gather as much info as possible. Thanks.
The problem is my 12-15 minute drive (each way) to work, I am lucky if I can get 5 hours a week of playing time and Focal says it should take between 20-50 hours! I spoke with my installer and he said, I can bring the car in after the break-in period and they will "retune" the system, which I think essentially is adjusting the Crossovers, he said they set them to +3db to help with the break-in, but if that is true, I'm thinking -3db will be more to my liking.

Yeah, the factory sub is fine, it has plenty enough bass for me and my musical tastes, without over-powering or over thumping (I don't listen to Rap...lol), I have it set in the infotainment system to +1 or +2 from center.

Regarding the Center channel (in dash), I have it turned way down, I do not want my left and right channels "blended" I want to hear the better quality woofers and tweeters, and I want to preserve true left vs right channel stereo separation. So even if somebody made a high quality Center Channel replacement, I would not want it.

Cheers..
 

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The problem is my 12-15 minute drive (each way) to work, I am lucky if I can get 5 hours a week of playing time and Focal says it should take between 20-50 hours! I spoke with my installer and he said, I can bring the car in after the break-in period and they will "retune" the system, which I think essentially is adjusting the Crossovers, he said they set them to +3db to help with the break-in, but if that is true, I'm thinking -3db will be more to my liking.

Yeah, the factory sub is fine, it has plenty enough bass for me and my musical tastes, without over-powering or over thumping (I don't listen to Rap...lol), I have it set in the infotainment system to +1 or +2 from center.

Regarding the Center channel (in dash), I have it turned way down, I do not want my left and right channels "blended" I want to hear the better quality woofers and tweeters, and I want to preserve true Left vs right channel stereo separation. So even if somebody made a high quality Center Channel replacement, I would not want it.

Cheers..
Great info, appreciate it.
 

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Fantastic information
Couple of additional questions:
Am I correct to assume that your speaker upgrade did NOT require that you disable ANC?
Since you went from 2 ohm stock/wimpy speakers to 4 ohm upgrade speakers have you heard a noticable decrease in power/loudness?
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
Fantastic information Couple of additional questions:
My pleasure...

Am I correct to assume that your speaker upgrade did NOT require that you disable ANC?
I did quite a bit of reading in other Honda Forums (Pilot & Accord mostly) about the ANC and it appears to me that people generally have problems with it, in regards to the sub-woofer (either adding one or swapping the stock one out) and a poster here had the same types of issues. So my thinking was, that I may have to try and disable it. But, I decided to do the speakers first and then listen for any strange reverberations/rumble or any out-of-sync/out-of-phase conditions. In listening to the stereo with the engine OFF or when driving at speeds up to 70mph, EVERYTHING sounds awesome, so I see no need to disconnect the ANC. I know some people here say they could hear a difference, but if it sounds fine connected, why disconnect? right?

Since you went from 2 ohm stock/wimpy speakers to 4 ohm upgrade speakers have you heard a noticeable decrease in power/loudness?
This was huge concern for me, so I fully understand, but I was lucky that the Car Stereo shop had previously put the Infinity's that I wanted in a Passport and they required too much power and did not sound good, so they upgraded to the Focal (165AS) and they worked great, I had read about Focals for years and this model was highly recommended on Crutchfield so I went with them and was not disappointed at all! The one thing I did not calculate or measure is the volume setting for the stock stereo.

So, it may very well be, that I need to turn the Focals up to "28" when the stock speakers were the same "loud" at "22", I cannot tell you. But I can say that when I have the Focals turned up to a much louder volume than I normally listen to - it is NOT max'd out - meaning they could probably go even louder! And this is important as you do not want to run the AMP at the max or even near max, as it could cause severe distortion, over heat, or shut down.

Hope that helps, any more questions (by anyone), please just ask...
 

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Fantastic information
Couple of additional questions:
Am I correct to assume that your speaker upgrade did NOT require that you disable ANC?
Since you went from 2 ohm stock/wimpy speakers to 4 ohm upgrade speakers have you heard a noticable decrease in power/loudness?
The speakers might not but a sub definitely would require ANC disable. It is best to do it anyway, it adds nothing but fake exhaust sounds to this car and muddies the audio sound and takes power from the amp.

You will absolutely notice some dropoff with 4 ohm vs 2 ohm even with very sensitive speakers (93dB) unless you amplify them externally with more power. It is not drastic though with really efficient after market speakers. I run audio at 18-22 volume loudest now, instead of 14-17. ( I went from 2 ohm to 3)
 

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Just wanted to add to the thread regarding aftermarket amplifier install.

Steven had a great video about getting a power wire through the fire wall for aftermarket amps. He used the passenger side grommet which is easier to see and get to, but there is an alternative too.

Today I found out how easy it is to go driver side, where the grommet is hidden below the driver side engine compartment fuse box. Left side is is also the battery side and also not the side the factory amplifier speaker wires route on. Left is preferred for that reason (speaker and power should be spaced apart or cross at 90 degrees when possible) plus you save a few feet of cable by not having to go as far in the engine compartment. The route also avoids heat sources better by staying by the battery and air filter and not going near cooling lines or engine block.

To go left/driver side, first press 3 plastic tabs on the outside of the fuse box in driver side engine of compartment. Not the tabs that pop the cover, the ones further out that hold the whole box to the plastic bracket. This will let you get better access to the driver side firewall grommet. It is still tight work space, but you can snake back and feel the grommet with tbe big driver side wire bundle. A bright headlamp should let you see well engough to grab the grommet and make a careful piercing to the rubber only (no wires).

Before you try to pull cable, do yourself a favor and buy a proper fish tape for ten bucks before trying to get a cable through the grommets extra space and into the compartment. Hangers and wires work fine too, but around all the modules, you will want something flexible and easier to push.

The hardest part is piercing the grommet with a small knife, very carefully slicing just loose rubber and not the wires inside, and then fishing the tape past the internal grommet folds of rubber. Once you get into the cabin you will suddenyl be able to push a couple feet of the fish tape. The grommet hole comes out right behind a bright silver module above the brake pedal, perfectly positioned to easily grab the fish tape (much easier than the right side) which will come out from behind that module obviously. It is then quite simple to pull cable through the firewall with the wire taped to the tail end of fishtape. Tape several inches of wire to the fish tape using duct or electrical tape and make sure to tape past the join and taper to smooth shapes so it will pull without resistance. Route the cable down the left side of the car under the kick and door trim panels.

Figuring out which side and how to get in took me the longest. Now that I know a cable could be brought in and routed on the left, anyone can do this in less than 30 minutes easy. There is lots of space in back for amps or aftermarket subs if you want to add something.

I will post pictures later to help others see what I did.
 
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