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Unread 05-24-2019, 11:05 AM   #1
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Default Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

Im really proud of how this came out. I love building systems for golf carts because of the challenge of making it hidden, sound good, and inexpensive. I use a lot of weird things for my installs, and this one is no different.

This started out as a lithium conversion for my friend’s DS. He uses a small Bluetooth speaker for music, so while the body was off I took the opportunity to build a great system- on an $80 budget. Here are the parts:

Phillips TV full range speakers (partsexpress.com)- $2.35/pair (not joking)
2.1 Bluetooth amplifier with 2x25w plus 1x100w sub channel- $35 partsexpress.com
Polk Audio 8” marine subwoofer- $40 open box on eBay.

The full range speakers come out of a flat screen TV so they are designed to be efficient and come in their own enclosure.


Out of the box, they can be mounted to the glove boxes on either side and take up minimal space, but with some trimming they fit very snugly and even look like they belong.



I mounted them with black shoe goo and self tapping screws, then put a rubber grommet in the glove boxes to thread the wiring through.




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Unread 05-24-2019, 11:15 AM   #2
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

Next was the amplifier. This thing is great- Bluetooth built in and adjustable bass and treble, sub crossover frequency, sub level, and main volume. Problem is it comes as a bare circuit board and needs a housing. I took an old 12v charger I had that died. It was a bit too big so I cut it up a bit.



Then I cut a piece of HDPE to make a face for it.



Then I cut a piece of smoked plexi as a cover.

I ordered two pairs of the tv speakers and dissected one to see how it is wired and the front of it happened to make a great piece for the other end.

I then mounted it to the aluminum wall with self tapping screws, and ran the wires out of the bottom of the chassis to totally hide them.


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Unread 05-24-2019, 11:27 AM   #3
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

The sub box was a huge challenge. It had to be weatherproof, compact, airtight, cheap, and sound good. I found a plastic drink tub (the kid they use for parties). It happened to be the exact volume of air I needed for a sealed enclosure on the Polk. I cut a piece of Formica countertop in a circle to mount to the top of the tub and a hole in that for the woofer. I sealed it up with show goo. Then I mounted it from the backside of the aluminum wall, and spaced it about 2” away from it using rubber suspension bushings as spacers.
It’s amazing how perfectly it fit. It will clear the suspension by about 1/4” if for some reason a 900 pound dude jumps on the back.
Now that it is all back together I had a chance to play around with the sound. My only complaint after dialing it in is that the TV speakers are just not bright enough, but they do sound good. I am going to try to cut one mid from each one (each has two mods and two tweeters) to see how that helps.

The really neat thing is how the sub fits. Right below the access cover in the body. Future plans will definitely call for polishing the plastic and painting the wood on the inside, then lighting it up with LEDs. The rear seat will be on top, but I think even if you are peeking at it it will be impressive.

Also, future plans call for making some grills for the TV speakers up front.

All in all, you can’t go wrong with this system for the price. It is more work, but I will put it up against any soundbar any day. Plus the fact that you can’t even tell there’s a stereo in it, the stealth aspect is just too cool.



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Unread 05-24-2019, 02:48 PM   #4
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

Wow, impressive. Iíve been doing custom stereos for ages and always had to improvise with fiberglass and wood when adding speakers and sub boxes. Using a bucket for a sub box is a new one. Quite creative Iíve got to admit. I think it came out very nice.


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Unread 05-24-2019, 03:05 PM   #5
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

That looks great! I see some R134 on the work bench. Are you installing air too?
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Unread 05-24-2019, 04:58 PM   #6
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

Nice work!
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Unread 05-24-2019, 10:38 PM   #7
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Default Re: Killer Budget Stealth Stereo Install

Pretty slick man. Especially considering the budget.
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