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  #1  
Old 10-29-2007
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Sound System

Raven has one of the GME marine CD/Mpeg/AM/FM deals with flat wall mount speakers. Model is a 968.

Sound quality is OK, just. I notice that GME have a new model out.

Anyone have any thoughts. PB had an Aiwa cassette deck that was standard auto type and it gave stirling service for many many years. I'm wondering how important it is to go with the marinised gear. We do much more outside sailing on Raven than we ever did on PB.

Speaker cable and speaker update is probably the first step to be taken. Does anyone have any recommendations for speakers. I doubt I can fit recessed speakers which is a shame space wise. Positioning of speakers in a cabin is a no win situation I think. I doubt we will go with cockpit speakers.

We don't and won't use an Ipod except for portable use. We will hold most of our music on hard drive or individual CDs. When I rip music to computer I do so without compression. Sound quality is fsuperior although you can fill up a hard drive surprisingly quickly.

Any thought or suggestions would be appreciated.

TD
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Old 10-29-2007
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My knowledge is limited.... I've had both the non and the marine units. I was told that some of the circuit boards in the marine unit are epoxy coated. The first marine unit I bought lasted about six months....exchanged for new and another six or so months...toast...This has been a few yrs. ago but I remember when playing Cd's it always got warmer than I thought it should. This may have been contributed to the epoxy coating? I think the brand was Jennson which is on the low end. All that said my non marine unit is going strong after four yrs.
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Old 10-29-2007
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I use a Pioneer auto deck. Plays audio CD's as well as in MP3 and WMA format, w/aux input, and XM input,which can also be used for a multi-disc changer. I run it through a pair of Bose wall mount speakers inside, and a pair of Jensen's, in the cockpit, that were on the boat already. I also have a inside/outside/both switch.

Nice thing about the aux input, I can run movies through the stereo for sound, rather than use the laptop speakers.
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Old 10-29-2007
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Practical Sailor is reviewing marine speakers in the next issue.
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Old 10-29-2007
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Best ones under $200 bucks here are the Infinity 6.5" ones forsound quality IMHO, but I don't know if they are carried down under TDW.
As long as the radio is kept inside, there is not much need for marinization. You can use auto speakers outside too to save $$ ...but you need plastic grills, plastic cones, and rubber, not foam, surrounds. Tough to find all three these days.


One thought...since you are not compressing your CD's, you are using a gig or so of hard drive space for every 2 discs. Here we have TERRABYTE external hard drives for under $300 bucks so that may be a good option for you for your portable sound needs.
http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Weste...oductDetail.do
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Old 10-29-2007
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I'm using a Yamaha sound projector that sits under the flat screen. This unit is an array of speakers and doppler shift technology to produce surround sound effect.

I have a device called Ilov from Sharper Image that accepts my iPOD and allows the iPOD videos and sound recordings to be displayed on the TV and the sound projector.

Niles makes water-proof box speakers that are much superior to Bose and much cheaper. I bought two sets from Lafayette electronics a few years ago. As you can probably tell, I'm a bit of a tech junkie.
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Old 10-29-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by speciald View Post
I'm using a Yamaha sound projector that sits under the flat screen. This unit is an array of speakers and doppler shift technology to produce surround sound effect.

I have a device called Ilov from Sharper Image that accepts my iPOD and allows the iPOD videos and sound recordings to be displayed on the TV and the sound projector.

Niles makes water-proof box speakers that are much superior to Bose and much cheaper. I bought two sets from Lafayette electronics a few years ago. As you can probably tell, I'm a bit of a tech junkie.

Sounds terrific. What in god's name are you saying ??? I want sound, I'm not trying to send the bleedin Philadelphia back in time. Dopler effect indeed !!! Only kidding.

Seriously though, I wonder if surround sound is not a bad idea on a boat. Cabin speakers are usually mounted on opposing bulkheads so it doesn't matter which side of the boat you are on the balance is always slightly off. Does surround sound compensate in any way ?


Cam - yep, rip those suckers at full whack and they sure do chew up the gigabytes. I am not a tech whiz by any means and I was blithely ripping CDs to my laptop harddrive when I was somewhat stunned to find out I'd just filled up a 100gig drive. Oh dear. My aim is to have one of those removeable drives for music. A terrabyte is I suppose 1000gigs which is getting on for 3000 cds. They tend to average out at around 300meg, remembering a lot of my collection is old farts stuff originally released on LP.
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The Niles point series speakers are fine box speakers if that is what is needed and I agree they are superior to the Bose similar series. Kinda funny though that your Yamaha sound "bar" essentially uses electronics to do what Bose invented back in the sixties...bounce the sound off the wall to give you a surround sound experience! (g) Don't like it at home...but a good solution for a boat.

TDW...what he has is a self contained surround sound speaker system and amplification in a slim box that fits under the TV. You need AC power for that. And at $900 & up it is probably not what you are looking for. Nothing in DC available for true surround sound but you can get some pretty cheap and compact home surround systems if you have AC on the boat. Like this for under $300.

http://www.circuitcity.com/ssm/Phili...Detail.do#tabs
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Old 10-30-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tdw View Post
Seriously though, I wonder if surround sound is not a bad idea on a boat. Cabin speakers are usually mounted on opposing bulkheads so it doesn't matter which side of the boat you are on the balance is always slightly off. Does surround sound compensate in any way ?
TD, a boat interior has the exactly the same issues as the interior of a car - crappy acoustics!! So a home theatre set is a waste of money.

True surround sound systems (eg Dolby 5.1) have each speaker sending out a different "sound" ("noise", whatever) channel so if you're sitting in your boat, you'd have to be on the table facing forward to get the full effect. If your head is next to the "left rear" speaker, for example, you'll only hear weird noises - unless you've got the volume up so loud that surround sound is irrelevant (think hoons in cars)... and I shudder the think of the damage a subwoofer could do (the "1" in "5.1" ) to your fastenings if you got carried away a bit with the 1812 Overture..

When looking at these things, look for a good quality car system and by all means use marinised speakers (normal speakers have cardboard cones which don't like water funnily enough). If you get a head unit in a removable chassis, that's even better 'cause you can take it home at the end of each cruise and not have to worry about corrosion.

I hope this helps.
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Old 10-30-2007
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Td...

Quote:
Originally Posted by tdw View Post

We don't and won't use an Ipod except for portable use. We will hold most of our music on hard drive or individual CDs. When I rip music to computer I do so without compression. Sound quality is fsuperior although you can fill up a hard drive surprisingly quickly.

Any thought or suggestions would be appreciated.

TD

If you want sound quality it is very hard to do well on a boat while balancing current draw! As for ripping all your music, without compression due to quality, I really need to laugh at that one. First the Mp3 player or iPod is the single greatest piece of music gear I have purchased in a long, long time. While the sound quality of the standard "rip" of 128 kbps is somewhat lacking you can adjust that up to 320 kbps and you'll be hard pressed to notice a difference.

I am a life long audiophile and musician with what most consider a very, very well trained ear. My home system cost me well... A LOT of $$$. Heck the custom built mono-block amplifier for my front left speaker alone was 3.5k and I have a matched one for the right speaker too plus center and surround amps. I have more invested in cabling & interconnects for my home system than I do for the entire sound system on my boat including my new 160gb iPod.

I have done many comparisons for friends between 128 kbps, 320 kbps and a CD and while on my very high end system you can certainly tell a there is a difference between 320 and CD the DRAMATIC difference is at 128 kbps vs. 320 or CD. When we move to the car, or their home system, they can't even come close to discerning a difference, in blind comparisons, between 320 kbps and CD.

The biggest problem with Mp3 players in the internal pre-amp. For an iPod you should be using the pre-amp output on the bottom NOT the headphone output. While this does compromise the sound quality, when compared to home audio pre-amps & surround processors costing 2.5 to 10k, the pre-amps in iPods are very, very similar in quality to the cheap pre's built into car audio decks and inexpensive home audio products.

Don't discard the iPod due to sound quality until you've tried one at 320 kbps or hooked one up correctly using the pre-out on the bottom going directly via RCA's into your amp. I have over 1700 CD's on my iPod all ripped at 320 kbps. This saves a TON of space compared to a full CD rip.

If you want high end on a boat a 12v car audio system with separate power amps is the way to go. The best sounding box speakers I've heard are the Paradigm's, http://www.paradigm.com/en/paradigm/...1-7-6.paradigm by quite a long shot, but they are 8ohm not 4ohm so an amp may be required. If you want a truly great sounding marine duty speaker check out the stuff from JL Audio. It's worth building your own box for these puppies! These are the ONLY marine grade speakers I have found that even come close to audiophile quality! http://marine.jlaudio.com/products_c...hp?prod_id=376

I actually run a set of Blose 151's. http://www.samsclub.com/shopping/nav...=5&item=359942 These 151's are NOT to be confused with the replacement piece of crap 151 SE. Because the 151's are very, very efficient 4 ohm speakers, and can be played quite loudly, with a stock car audio deck. The Blose 151's are a far better speaker than the 151 SE! While they still basically sound like crap they allow me to avoid the high current draw of running a set of Paradigms and separate amps. If I had unlimited battery supply I'd be building a set of speaker boxes for a par of JL Audio speakers!

On a boat, like in a car, I've learned to lower my standards and leave the critical listening to my home system....
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Last edited by Maine Sail; 10-30-2007 at 09:10 AM.
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