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What do you think about the sound system?

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Well I've had about a week with my EV6 and the Kicker 11HS8. While the Kicker is a solid upgrade, the system really could use more low end. The little 8" sub keeps up with the mains until the volume is up about half way (~35 out of 75 on the volume slider). I feel like the Kicker gets the sound system into the realm of "good car audio" but is not "impressive" by any means. I think a more powerful sub would get it there because the cabin speakers really are quite nice.

My Subaru Crosstrek came from the factory with a Harmon Kardon system (no sub) that outperforms the KIA even with the Kicker sub. I use the Subie as a reference point for other cars' premium (not custom) audio systems.

I played around with placement of the Kicker, putting it in the cavity where the old Meridian was and then up top in the cargo area. While the sound was a bit better when it was unobstructed, the difference was surprisingly subtle. I plan to keep it in the cavity just so it's conveniently out of the way.

I wish I would have found a more powerful sub. I wonder if the 46HS10 would have been better? I'm not sure if I'd swap it out at this point but it may be food for thought if you're considering replacing your Meridian sub. The 11HS8 is still a solid choice but keep your expectations in check about what you're getting in the end.
 

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Well I've had about a week with my EV6 and the Kicker 11HS8. While the Kicker is a solid upgrade, the system really could use more low end. The little 8" sub keeps up with the mains until the volume is up about half way (~35 out of 75 on the volume slider). I feel like the Kicker gets the sound system into the realm of "good car audio" but is not "impressive" by any means. I think a more powerful sub would get it there because the cabin speakers really are quite nice.

My Subaru Crosstrek came from the factory with a Harmon Kardon system (no sub) that outperforms the KIA even with the Kicker sub. I use the Subie as a reference point for other cars' premium (not custom) audio systems.

I played around with placement of the Kicker, putting it in the cavity where the old Meridian was and then up top in the cargo area. While the sound was a bit better when it was unobstructed, the difference was surprisingly subtle. I plan to keep it in the cavity just so it's conveniently out of the way.

I wish I would have found a more powerful sub. I wonder if the 46HS10 would have been better? I'm not sure if I'd swap it out at this point but it may be food for thought if you're considering replacing your Meridian sub. The 11HS8 is still a solid choice but keep your expectations in check about what you're getting in the end.
Thank you for this feedback, JSLC.
I think the Kicker HS8 solution is the best to find decent bass. To find better, my car audio specialist offers me a system with Focal Sub12 Slim SubWoofer, changing the original amplifier for 1000 to 1500 dollars.
It's not the same price or the same material anymore!!!
 

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Well I've had about a week with my EV6 and the Kicker 11HS8. While the Kicker is a solid upgrade, the system really could use more low end. The little 8" sub keeps up with the mains until the volume is up about half way (~35 out of 75 on the volume slider). I feel like the Kicker gets the sound system into the realm of "good car audio" but is not "impressive" by any means. I think a more powerful sub would get it there because the cabin speakers really are quite nice.

My Subaru Crosstrek came from the factory with a Harmon Kardon system (no sub) that outperforms the KIA even with the Kicker sub. I use the Subie as a reference point for other cars' premium (not custom) audio systems.

I played around with placement of the Kicker, putting it in the cavity where the old Meridian was and then up top in the cargo area. While the sound was a bit better when it was unobstructed, the difference was surprisingly subtle. I plan to keep it in the cavity just so it's conveniently out of the way.

I wish I would have found a more powerful sub. I wonder if the 46HS10 would have been better? I'm not sure if I'd swap it out at this point but it may be food for thought if you're considering replacing your Meridian sub. The 11HS8 is still a solid choice but keep your expectations in check about what you're getting in the end.
My listening reference to judge my sound is Chris Rea, Road to Hell, with the intro above. I hope this will be conclusive.
 

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Well I've had about a week with my EV6 and the Kicker 11HS8. While the Kicker is a solid upgrade, the system really could use more low end. The little 8" sub keeps up with the mains until the volume is up about half way (~35 out of 75 on the volume slider). I feel like the Kicker gets the sound system into the realm of "good car audio" but is not "impressive" by any means. I think a more powerful sub would get it there because the cabin speakers really are quite nice.

My Subaru Crosstrek came from the factory with a Harmon Kardon system (no sub) that outperforms the KIA even with the Kicker sub. I use the Subie as a reference point for other cars' premium (not custom) audio systems.

I played around with placement of the Kicker, putting it in the cavity where the old Meridian was and then up top in the cargo area. While the sound was a bit better when it was unobstructed, the difference was surprisingly subtle. I plan to keep it in the cavity just so it's conveniently out of the way.

I wish I would have found a more powerful sub. I wonder if the 46HS10 would have been better? I'm not sure if I'd swap it out at this point but it may be food for thought if you're considering replacing your Meridian sub. The 11HS8 is still a solid choice but keep your expectations in check about what you're getting in the end.
I just installed a 46HS10 and am very happy. It’s nearly the same size as the 11HS8 but felt noticeably heavier. I currently have it just sitting on a towel on top of the stock “sub” but without the plastic panel.

I still need to do more tuning but it’s pretty close to which I want, which is just to balance out the missing bottom and of the stock Meridian system. For me it’s absolutely plenty and I really wouldn’t want more volume or lower range. I had to turn it way down from my initial settings guess.

For reference the reason I wanted spending more than stock was for things like the SiriusXM Chill channel.
 

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Nice and neat!
But this noob has few questions:
1) how is the Kicker secured to the board?
2) where is the remote control (Blue) going? to the sub?
3) that black tube going into the Kicker is clipped to that black connector. what/where is that?
going to the original sub?
4) finally, the red/black coming from left i assume is the power from 12v adapter which goes
to Infinity? does it come with the proper power adapter/plug?

thanks for your help...
 

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Nice and neat!
But this noob has few questions:
1) how is the Kicker secured to the board?
2) where is the remote control (Blue) going? to the sub?
3) that black tube going into the Kicker is clipped to that black connector. what/where is that?
going to the original sub?
4) finally, the red/black coming from left i assume is the power from 12v adapter which goes
to Infinity? does it come with the proper power adapter/plug?

thanks for your help...
1) I secured it with some double sided sticky tape
2) The remove turn on goes to the Sub. It's unnecessary given the sub has a built in auto turn on feature but I figured I'd eliminate any wonkiness knowing the kicker LOC has a reliable remote signal
3) The black connector is the factory sub harness. I soldered in the new sub's harness to the factory connector.
4) I'm using the NOCO 12v adapter plugged into power. I just clipped off the end of it. The wiring is properly rated for 10 amps and the connector is a solid plastic unlike some of the amazon ones I've seen melting. I trust it's truly rated to run 15 amps. For that I just used bullet style connectors since the Infinity's power/ground is built into the harness. I didn't feel like soldering it in the event I need to remove it, I don't have to fish the 12v wire from the accessory plug. I ran it like this:
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So is this the right shopping list? Looking to keep things looking as OEM as possible, just want better sound.
 

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So is this the right shopping list? Looking to keep things looking as OEM as possible, just want better sound.
Yes, it's not 373DAS, it's 0AS. The linked part is the right one...dealers are able to get them too BTW. Mine's in the mail.

Yes on the NOCO 12v

That sub appears to fit for others but I'll say after adding the Infinity Basslink Mini, it's as much as you can comfortably go...not sure if it's worth the extra 150 for the Kicker. The JBL nano is the same thing as the basslink mini from the same OEM and it's cheaper so I'd go with that personally...and because it's so small you'll have plenty of room to work with.

 

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Hey, thanks so much for your good info.
That trunk mat, is it sitting above the standard hard cover?
Sub is not muffled by it at all?
And where did you buy the mat, looks like all-weather?
Sorry about so many freakin' questions...
If it helps, I have mine sat under the hard floor, the rubber mat I got when I got the car but not sure if in the USA yo have to buy this.

As the speaker is a sub woofer being under the hard floor cover is not an issue, the original sub is under the hard floor and then under a plastic cover so sitting it just under the hard floor is above the location of where Kia fit there sub.
 

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I just installed my Kicker 11HS8 and boy is that what the car needed! The sound system now sounds like what I was expecting in the first place (maybe a little better). Installation was very easy thanks to this forum. Here are a few things I learned in case it helps anyone.

1. The ground wire can connect to one of the 10mm screws that were removed when the old sub was uninstalled. I soldered a ring terminal to the end of the ground wire and then screwed it down. Just sand a little where the terminal will contact the car body for a good connection. In retrospect, I see in the forum pictures that some of you did this but wanted to call attention to it.

2. The positive is easy to slide under the plastic so that all cables are completely hidden. Just pop open the panel under the 12V socket, reach in and you should be able to feel the wire at the bottom as you push it from the subwoofer cavity toward the tail light.

3. The wiring to the 12V socket unplugs just like a wall outlet. This makes splicing in the positive very easy. Just unplug and then pull the wiring out the access panel along with the wire you just fished through and splice away. You can choose to either plug the wiring back in to the 12V socket or leave it disconnected to reduce your chances of exceeding circuit capacity. FWIW, I plugged mine back in. I figured the fuse will keep things in check and there are workaounds if you need to plug in something that uses 15A: You could use a different 12V socket in the car or you could temporarily unplug or turn off the sub.

4. Leaving one of the plastic access ports off to the subwoofer cavity seems to have a positive effect on sound quality. I'm still experimenting with this. It also provides easy access to the adjustment knobs on the subwoofer.

Any tips on how to unplug the 12v? Did you pull the whole socket out or just the wiring behind it? I cant seem to get it to unplug to pull it out.

Can you show me where you routed the wire under the plastic? I think I can see a spot toward the back where it looks like it could push it through with some fish tape
 

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Any tips on how to unplug the 12v? Did you pull the whole socket out or just the wiring behind it? I cant seem to get it to unplug to pull it out.

Can you show me where you routed the wire under the plastic? I think I can see a spot toward the back where it looks like it could push it through with some fish tape
I routed the wire in the channel where the red arrow is below. It was not a tight fit so no fish tape was required. I just slid it in, reached through the access panel by the 12V socket and grabbed it.
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I didn't remove the whole 12V socket, just the wires leading to the back of the socket. They should just pull right off like you're unplugging something from the wall. The back of the socket looks something like the image below and the wiring terminates in an L shaped plastic harness that pulls right off. Once the wires were off, I pulled them through the access door and had enough length to splice into the positive.

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Curiosity got the best of me. I ordered the Kicker 46HS10 to see if it's any better than the 11HS8 I installed a couple weeks ago. While I didn't need more volume from the 8" sub, it just seemed to struggle with some songs and sounded distorted at even middle range volumes. I'm sure some of the issue is due to the speaker being buried in the sub-trunk. The 10" replacement sounds more clear despite the poor placement and produces bass effortlessly without being overwhelmed -- even at higher volumes. The new speaker uses the same wiring harness as the old one so it was an easy swap and it still fits in the same space as the original Meridian sub. I'm really pleased with the improvement and will be returning the 11HS8.

BTW, both of these speakers just dropped in price. The 10" is now available for $315 and the 8" is $255.
 

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Wahoo, JSLC, you have to push hard for the HS8 to reach its limits. The HS8 is more than enough for me.
I did the upgrading last evening and I have a new sound system that finally looks like what you would expect from a premium installation.
Thank you to this forum for all your valuable advice.
Have a good trip
 

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I hate to jump in the middle of the thread but I think that this is the best place for my subwoofer replacement post. Got my EV6 in Feb 22 and quickly realized that the passive subwoofer was a disappointment. I started following this thread somewhere around page 4 and, after a few weeks of posts (maybe to page 8-9?) I had enough to start out on my own. Before I go into detail about my sub, I want to thank everyone on the forum for sharing their experiences -- it really helped planning my solution.

I wanted:
1) to be able to revert back to 100% original with no visible splices -- especially with the fragility of the OEM amp and wanting to not give any indications of something that might void any warranty.
2) as close to "bolt-on" as I could make it, so an underseat powered sub was chosen.
3) By checking the reviews of several brands, all had some complaints of apparent heat failures with some having more heat/unexplained failures than others. Since the it gets hot in SC, brand selection and getting temp assist was a concern. (I have seen 117F on the dash after parking on the driveway -- without ANY driving),

I chose an Infinity BassLink SM2 powered subwoofer mounted on a 3/4in plywood base. I ordered an OEM connector so I would not need to splice into the high-level speaker leads. I added a low-speed fan (Noctua NF-P14s redux-900, Ultra Quiet Fan, 140mm, 900 RPM) that pulls air through channels between the sub and the the plywood. I have pics below.

Notes:
a) it is probably overkill, but the amp and fan are individually fused (0.5amp fan fuse)
b) the orange stuff is Schluter underlayment that is intended to be used under a heated tile floor. I had it leftover from a bathroom remodel so I cut a piece to place under the amp. Air is pulled between the raised circles in the plastic and flows under the sub
c) in the pics, you will see 1/4in shims I added under the plywood to raise the sub a little higher. I did this at the last minute to give the fan a little more clearance from the bottom of the well. Without the fan, raising the plywood would not be needed.
d) I did splice into the 12v power outlet in the left panel rather than using a plug into the outlet. If I need to go back to OEM config, the added power cable can be easily pulled/hidden under the plastic floor. I found that the KIA wiring harness conveniently has about 10-12 inches of extra wire going to the power outlet. The extra wire is folded over and bundled up directly behind the power outlet. I was able to reach up through the access panel under the power outlet and cut the tape holding the bundle. I then pulled the power/ground wire down through the access panel to make the splices and tucked them back in place when done It made getting power to the amp easier than I expected.

What I have learned:
  • the amp runs a little cooler than I expected. The fan may have been overkill, but this is a project that I did not want to revisit.
  • the amp has controls for GAIN, CROSSOVER FREQ, and BASS BOOST. The setting of the CROSSOVER FREQ does not make much difference. I think this is because the sub is being driven from the high-level output of the KIA amp and the KIA amp is already filtering the frequencies that make it to the OEM subwoofer.

The sub has only been in place for just a couple of days. So far, I have been very pleased.
Here are the pics...
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Clean! What is the box with the 2 fuses on it
Since the fan was going to be on all the time and it is out of sight, I figured that I would put a 1/2 amp fuse on the fan. That box is a fuse box that can hold 4 fuses. I had it lying around from another project. It holds a fuse for the amp and another for the fan. I know it was overkill for the amp because the KIA has a 15 amp fuse on the DC circuit, I put in another 15 am fuse in the box, and the amp has its own 15 am fuse on its chassis. If the fan ever fails, I am sure that the fan itself would just die without any significant current draw, so a fuse was probably not needed here either. However, it does make it easy to kill power to either the amp or fan because these add fuses are easy to pull.
 
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