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The VIPER Garage  |  Generation-specific Viper Forums  |  RT/10 & GTS Viper Discussions  |  GTS Stereo Upgrades
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Author Topic: GTS Stereo Upgrades  (Read 1645 times)
RTTTTed
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Viper Nation - ezine
« on: October 20, 2010, 11:57:22 PM »

The Alpine stereo that comes in the Gen 2 Vipers is really a great piece of electronics.  The amp in the trunk is also a good piece of hardware and well designed.  Replacing the Generic speakers with some name brand will allow the sound from that Alpine to "rip the air asunder", or ... equal the premium sound system that come in new cars!

However, the speakers, tweeters and resistor package is quickly and easily upgraded.  The door speaker kits are small tweeters using a resistor to cut frequencies out of the tweeter power supply.  This does work, but although good "for it's day" the older Viper's stereo responds to a speaker kit upgrade with amazing results.

Williams Lake Sight and Sound was my store of choice and I asked the manager to research a decent set of speakers for my second GTS.  With Headers, a Roe supercharger and track Corsa exhaust I really needed decent stereo sound.  Being that I like driving cross country and cross continent I wanted a great sounding Listening stereo system, not a stereo for show or earblasting.  Derrick called all his suppliers and got back to me a week later.  He recommended Hertz speaker systems.  HSK 165 & HU 165L were the kits he brought in for me.  My 98 GTS came with JBL speaker kits installed when I bought it, but JBL's are very expensive and once installed these Hertz speaker kits sounded equally awesome.  Driving down the highway the floor and doorpanels can be felt vibrating at less than half volume because the bass response is so good.  The Hertz were about half the price of the JBL units.


The door speaker kit came with wide frequency 6 1/2" speakers, crossover box and tweeters.  For the tweeters I used JB Weld epoxy to attach the tweeter backs to the factory screw down plates.  The crossover boxes only fit to the doorpanel near the rear in the armrest bubble.  I used JB Weld again as well as some screws that only stuck out of the back of the crossover box 1/4" (to make certain that the screw tips did not poke through the panel.  The speakers fit into the recessed pockets in the doorpanels, but not the speaker covers.  With the speaker covers installed onto the doorpanels the wire mesh cover squished as soon as the door closed because there was only a 1/4" between the door and the dash.  I had to remove the covers because they couldn't be modified well enough to submit to car show scrutiny.  I bought some Kicker speaker grilles and ground the edges down so that the top of the speaker cover was 1/4" thick.  Then Iused the speaker screws to hold down the new covers and protect the speaker cones from any impacts.  The new covers also looked nice.  I used some rivet washers to fill the space between the cover and apply pressure to hold the speaker tight into the recess. 





The rear speakers were a "piece of cake" because I pulled the covering material and revealed the stock speakers.  Remove the 3 stock screws, place the new speakers centered on the holes and drill the 4 new holes required for nearly all aftermarket speakers and install. 

My preference is to cut the stock wiring harness and resolder that to the new speaker terminals for factory reliability.  The door wiring needs a few feet of new wire to hook up the crossover box and then the tweeter and wide frequency speakers, but the terminals are marked and easy to follow those instructions.

Just the difference in sound quality from better speakers will amaze you.

Ted
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1999 1200rwhp TT GTS - ART, 2001 Roe sc GTS- (4 sale), 440 Duster restomod (sold), 3x Stealth TTs, 92 Daytona IROC with T3, 580whp/1080wtq Cummins pickup.
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« Reply #1 on: October 21, 2010, 08:27:26 AM »

That's awesome Ted.  I really need to upgrade my system more.  I have only replaced the stock head unit because I wanted to listen to MP3 CDs.
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97GTS B&W: Roe S/C 6.5#, VEC3, custom W/M, Borla headers and catless exhaust, smooth tubes and K&Ns, JM stg3 heads, 1.7 Arrow RR, 3.55 gears, Fidanza, B&M sst, 661hp/683tq
RTTTTed
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Viper Nation - ezine
« Reply #2 on: October 21, 2010, 11:49:31 AM »

The speakers are the easiest to upgrade.  The head unit uses a DIN connector for the wiring to the amp in the rear of the car.  That requires serious work and the wires (if you chop the DIN plug) are tiny and difficult to solder.

I bought myself a Premier DEH P790BT head unit.  My factory 100 watt computer controlled head unit for my Stealth R/T TT crapped out and instead of buying a new multifunction steering wheel plate ($800+ was the quote) I purchased a new Blue tooth head unit.  I hate cell phones but need them in case of emergency because I own a General Store in Anahim Lake.  I installed the head unit and it equalled the performance of the stock stereo and had more volume.  The Bluetooth worked the cell phone amazingly!  The faceplate displayed the battery charge and the signal strength of the phone, even if it was in my jacket in the trunk.  When somone called me, the stereo would mute and the speakers would ring.  When I said "Hello" the connection would open and it sounded like the caller was sitting in the passenger seat!  Since I've been driving open headered race cars every chance I get, heavy equipment and loud street cars all my life I have some now have some slight hearing loss.  This hearing loss affects my cell phone comprehension, but the Bluetooth is amazing. 

I was so amazed that I immediately bought another head unit and installed that into my Viper GTS.  Unfortuntely that unit is obsoleted now, but I'm sure that there is an even better model available now.

The newest reason for installing a Bluetooth stereo is that much of the country has passed laws against any handheld device while driving.  BC has several hundred dollar fines, as does Ontario.  Since fines are like free taxes, you could assume that this law will soon cover the entire continent. 
Ted
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1999 1200rwhp TT GTS - ART, 2001 Roe sc GTS- (4 sale), 440 Duster restomod (sold), 3x Stealth TTs, 92 Daytona IROC with T3, 580whp/1080wtq Cummins pickup.
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Viper Nation - ezine
« Reply #3 on: October 21, 2010, 12:25:39 PM »

Infinity 6030cs kit installed in my ACR's door panels.  The cover have been ground down so that the screw stanctions are untouched and only the outer ring of the cover was ground to 3/8". 



These speakers were very reasonably priced and have more than double the sound quality of the old speakers.  This kit also uses a Crossover Box as shown above with the Hertz pics and it is attached the same way.

Ted
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1999 1200rwhp TT GTS - ART, 2001 Roe sc GTS- (4 sale), 440 Duster restomod (sold), 3x Stealth TTs, 92 Daytona IROC with T3, 580whp/1080wtq Cummins pickup.
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« Reply #4 on: December 07, 2010, 04:36:17 AM »

Looks great!  Now anyone doing a similar setup should know that there are 4 channel amplifiers that come with built in crossovers so that you wouldn't have to mount anything else in the door panel other than the mid-woofer and tweeter.  Also, I don't feel it's a good idea to remove the factory tweeter frequency limiter unless new wires are ran to separate the tweeter from the mid-woofers power feed (such as installing physically seperated crossovers like you have done) as the filter makes sure that only the highest frequencies are handled by the smallest speaker as the lower freqs would damage it.  Are you going to be installed a sub?  If so, what's your ideas for mounting?
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