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Discussion Starter #1
I'd really like to be able to hear my stereo at highway speeds. Also, I'm cheap.

I'm ordering a madstad windshield to install in the spring. This alone should help a lot in order to hear the radio.

Speakers: Found a pair of Rokkers (HRRK-7252-RXX) for $260 online. Should I just order these, install them and the windshield and see how it sounds? Or will I *need* an amp? Also the forum seems to swear by the hertz (hdx 165). Are they suitable to be run off the factory head unit?

Head: I really like the simplicity of the HK radio. The big buttons. The screen is near perfect. I don't need a lot of bells and whistles. But most radios I see online look like your typical space-age-sony-flashy-blue-leds crap that I don't want. If I were to upgrade the head, it would really only be to add Bluetooth capability to it. Are there any head units with BT that are as "simple" as the HK?


Summary: Will a pair for $250 speakers and nothing else be a noticable improvement? and Any decent head units out there with BT and big buttons for glove-laden riders?
 

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Can't speak from experience because mine is still all stock (for now) but I have a buddy that rides an Ultra Classic and just changed out the front fairing speakers to Rokkers and said it was a big improvement for him and enough that he is stopping there. My guess is that would not be enough for everybody but it did work for him. By the way the Madstad will help you hear even the stock units.
 

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Thanks for the anecdote. I'm thinking for <$300 for the pair of speakers I can't go wrong. Even with the bike OFF, the stock speakers leave a LOT to be desired.
 

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The best thing I did for my radio was switching from the HD windsplitter to a 12" Freedom shield. I also run the HD boom speakers because I got a deal on them and I rarely turn it past about half way.
 

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I have a set of J&M Rokkers in my bike, sound improvement was good, way better than the stock speakers.

I put a madstad 13.5" on my bike before the trip to SWIII this year and that made the biggest difference in being able to "hear" my stereo. I can now hear my stereo with my modular full face shoei helmet fully closed at 80mph. At that speed and with the helmet closed the stereo is at about 1/2 to 2/3 of full volume. Flip up the visor and it is really loud at 80mph.

My opinion for what its worth is to go with a brand that you know and like and keep future upgrades in mind.

I will be adding a J&M amp this winter to get the most out of my speakers.


Calgaryglide
 

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Hate to beak it to ya, but cheap & able hear at hwy speed cleanly don't go hand in hand. :(
 

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If you don't plan to get an amp and want to stay HD, the HD Boom speakers are a pretty good deal, go to your local dealer and ask to hear them, you might be surprised.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I have a set of J&M Rokkers in my bike, sound improvement was good, way better than the stock speakers.

I put a madstad 13.5" on my bike before the trip to SWIII this year and that made the biggest difference in being able to "hear" my stereo. I can now hear my stereo with my modular full face shoei helmet fully closed at 80mph. At that speed and with the helmet closed the stereo is at about 1/2 to 2/3 of full volume. Flip up the visor and it is really loud at 80mph.

My opinion for what its worth is to go with a brand that you know and like and keep future upgrades in mind.

I will be adding a J&M amp this winter to get the most out of my speakers.


Calgaryglide
Thanks. This was exactly what I was hoping to hear.

Hate to beak it to ya, but cheap & able hear at hwy speed cleanly don't go hand in hand. :(
says the guy with a couple grand in to his stereo. :p

I agree. When you get them in post what you think. I would like an upgrade but not really an audio buff, better than stock just might be enough for me too.
I will, but it won't be until springtime. :(


Just ordered the speakers and the grills with the tweeter and midrange for $321 shipped from https://www.directcycleparts.com
 

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Thanks for saying where you got the speakers. I want to upgrade, so I can use bass in my speakers. I don't know if I have stock or not but they sound nice when turned all the way up and bass is off.
 

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Guy's, there is a difference between being able to hear your stereo at 70-80 MPH and being able to hear your stereo LOUD and CLEAR at 70-80 MPH

That difference is the Amp.

A speaker upgrade will help you, JM and Hawg Wired make some very effecient speakers that will out perform the HD speakers as far as volumn goes.

I seldom turn up the radio real loud in my Truck, but for some reason when I get on the bike, I want my Rock and Roll LOUD and and I want it CLEAR and to do that you have to have an amp.

Hawg Wired and JM both make entry level amp and speaker kits that will make a HUGE difference over stock HD and not break the bank.
 

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I'm real happy with the J&M stuff, started w/ speakers, (which are a definite improvement over stock!) then more speakers (2 in the vented lowers) & amp.
One of the reasons that I went with J&M is that their stuff is designed with expandability in mind. (the speakers work well with the stock radio or amp)

'Highly recommend that you install the crash guard flaps and the GADS Lower Triple Tree Deflector BEFORE you start shuffling wind shields. These items are relatively cheap and improve the wind management immensely! ( these definitely increase the speed that you can hear the radio)
In addition to these, the vented lowers made a huge improvement also, but are relatively expensive.
I am running a 12" WindSplitter and see no need to change shields.

Eastern Performance Cycles $$ and customer service are hard to beat!

'Have ordered a small Bluetooth receiver to plug into the aux jack ($15 ebay), will post when I get a chance to try it out
 

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Whatever your choice make sure to get marine grade speakers. I went with an ARC6.5. Adapter kit and it mounted perfectly. Then installed polk 651's. They handle 250w rms and sound great on the stock unit. Later on i added an ARC amp and now it screams while also having good bass response. The whole deal ran just under 500. If you do go with an amp. Look close at the ARC they incorperate a bridge that modifies the bass frequecy to limit distorion in smaller coaxial speakers. Works awsome. Clear and loud at full crank.
 

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I'm in agreement with the others who say "if you want to listen vs just hear at highway speeds" you do in fact need an amp. The HK by itself will not be able to do this well.

i've got a HawgWired amp and 6.5" ZX speakers, I find it's mostly adequate, but it's still less than Ideal. Of course my idea of highway speeds is 80-85mph which doesn't help at all.

Also, no matter what you do. The better the source the better off you'll be. Radio is not a great source and you will get distortion and clipping if the radio is cranked up and the station signal isn't really strong. Same holds for mediocre quality MP3's on a CD. The best source I've found is an ipod with high quality rips playing through the Aux input. Very clear and distortion free.
 

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ultimately whatever you run has to last - yes amp -

hawg wired is a good place to start when looking

I bought a couple RF amps, eventually 2 PBR300x2 amps, hawg wired and HAT speakers, sony HU, then an Alpine HU as a backup

A/B'ing along the way, wanting more or most effective, signal and efficiency

HAT's are irritating - clear but too clear - some of the best parts though -
HAT's have somewhat of a runaway bride feel in the high end - for weather reason's I'm keeping my set up as is, stacked components or sealed cone speakers with separate bridge mounted tweeters are the way to go

re: cheap: Rockford PBR300x2 are half the price of a HawgWired amps, if necessity is a reason, they pull watts and are small, but with all the other pieces of the puzzle thrown in will only save you a $100-150 per amp on the install

so that's $300 less, at the time I upgraded it was about $800 less on amps

no great radio out there, as in inexpensive and squeaky clear output, radios are a choice of lesser evils

I like the UTE-42 from Alpine, haven't installed mine yet, may not for a while but the price, features and simplicity all seem good, sony's blue light crap is annoying, but a great sounding and performing unit MS-60

vendors to check, hawg wired, biketronics, yaffe

then look at vtwin audio, j-mco, hard ride, cycle sounds

whatever speakers you buy should handle 200w max

whatever amp you buy should have a full crossover

clarity comes from more speakers and optimal pairing

big sound comes from oval speakers and lids, 5x7, 6x8, 6x9, pair of 6x9

the bike can produce about 425w all day, finding the best use of that in speakers that both cut and are pleasing to the ear, 90% of it is speakers, but that's with the given that you have the correct and discrete enough power present
 

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HAT is Hybrid Audio Technologies

I thought through my situation and battle with the HAT tweeters and will be placing some type of sound absorbing materials directly above the tweeters if not directly on the bridge section

it's a squeely type high end feedback that they cause, I'm sure HAT would just state sound stage installation problem, I think some vinyl shelf liner across the bridge will help

the ZX speakers have a better tweeter
 
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