Went with Vantair’s suggestions as to amp, sub, and tweeter selection. Sounded like a good recommendation and was within my budget. The sub, tweeters, and amp was Santa’s gift to me this year and the day after Christmas I was tearing things apart the Airstream. It was only after hooking up the sub did I realize I needed to do some homework.
The Polk sub sounded nothing like the base sound I was expecting. It was extremely distorted and sounded terrible. I fiddled and fiddled with all the settings in the amp and stereo, inside out and upside down. The speaker sounded like it had been blown, faulty electrics or bad wires inside the unit, whatever, a lemon, a lump of coal.
I borrowed a sub from our living room 5.1 setup and it sounded great so nothing wrong with the installation. Got an RMA and sent it back and ordered a Rockford Fosgate R1-1X10 10-Inch 200 Watt Single Loaded Enclosure
instead at about the same price as the Polk - $105.23.
The only difference being the Rockford was not ported like the Polk. I learned with ported there is an air intake so that the speaker doesn’t have to work so hard pushing the cone back and forth. The closed system has to work harder but produces less re-verb. My thinking is that the sub being under the sofa would be enough re-verb itself. Also it is a bigger speaker at 10“ instead of 8" and the mdf enclosure material not so thick making the Rockford 5lb lighter at 20lb.
In taking things apart there is a screw which attaches to the armrest to the aluminum side panels which is difficult to get to. By just loosening it the armrest had enough flex to allow the wood cover holding the sofa cushion to be removed. Getting that screw back in would have been a pain had it been unscrewed all the way out.
The enclosure was just how Airstream had left it after construction. A little dirty but not too much in the way of debris.
At first hookup the Rockford Fosgate produced no sound. Oh no, what now. After removing the ground loop isolator bought to eliminate the 12v
buzz it then worked. You can set the low and high pass filter on the amp to remove the buzz without an isolator!
After cleaning up and rearranging the wires in the compartment for better airflow, time to figure out which position to put the speaker in. I positioned it with the cover on to line up with the opening for easy access to the amps settings, then angled it slightly.
Used a sharpie to mark the corners where the speaker sat, cut some spare wood into 8 pieces of 1“x1“x5“ then screwed down. The speaker sits nice and snug and won't move around when in motion. Lastly another piece of wood was placed to hold the top against the seat cover.
Doing the sub-woofer upgrade again I would probably have gone with a
Blaupunkt Blue Magic XLb 250 A 500-Watt 10-Inch Active Subwoofer System
, for simplicity AND the remote for about the same price as a separate amp and speaker - $206
Polk Audio DB1001 1-Inch Silk/Polymer Composite Dome Tweeters
Using poster putty I tried the speakers in different positions. Next to the Sony’s on the underside of the cabinet created a super sweet spot in the middle of the sofa which was nice. With the speakers on the side of the cabinet using the curvature of the inside wall like Vantair, the sweet spot was good while walking up and down the camper or sat in the dinette. I chose to mount the speakers on the side wall of the cabinet.
Will be adding a couple more of the dome tweeters to the bedroom under the cabinet.
Was thinking about buying the CD-BTB200 Pioneer blue-tooth adapter, but because it is discontinued the price is higher than a new blue-tooth ready stereo, even on eBay. So am in the market for a new stereo in due time. An 8mm audio jack to the aux input on the Pioneer works well for now.
What a difference it all makes, night and day. If you haven’t already, go for it. If you have spent your entire life working with noisy machinery and your ears are shot no worries, you can still FEEL the base!
Took me more than an afternoon because I didn’t know what I was doing but had fun learning. Going to add a sub to my Tundra now
tl;dr upgraded the audio. sounds fantastic