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#443330 - 11/03/08 08:43 PM Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240  
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SilverDawg Offline
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Here is the type of speakers I have in my boat...



They came standard with the rest of the fiberglass. I have noticed in some of the pics of more recent boats, that many are using different speakers in my 6 speaker locations. I am sure technology has improved in the last 4.5 years relative to marine speakers. I also have amps to power these and my subwoofer.





Any ideas, links, thoughts on what to replace them with to get a more robust sound?


2004 Cobalt 240 8.1 GiDP - SOLD 4/10
2008 HD Ultra Classic - SOLD 5/10
2010 Mastercraft X45 LY6 400HP
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#443340 - 11/03/08 09:16 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: SilverDawg]  
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Al Offline
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Polk DB651s....

(Since you probably cannot obtain Polk DB650s anymore).

The cutouts and bolt patterns should be the same, but check first (i.e. don't blame me if they don't fit). But I think they will if the Sonys are 6.5" in diameter, which to me is what they look like.

Those Sonys you have, if I am not mistaken, are full range with whizzer cone rather than 2-way; 2-way in my opinion, would be superior.

Also consider siliconing the speakers to the fiberglass. Use silicone rather than something like 4200/5200 as you want to be able to get the speakers off, and all you need is something to stop any rattling or air leakage, so regular low-strength silicone would work in this application.


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#443370 - 11/03/08 10:36 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: Al]  
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etyppo Offline
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I've been thinking about doing the same thing on my 263. It only came with 5.25" Sony speakers and no amps, so I've got more to add. IMO, going overboard with high quality component speakers is a waste of time on a boat given the high ambient noise level that is usually present. I'd go with a set of higher quality coax speakers like Al recommends and possibly add a subwoofer.


2006 Cobalt 263 Mercruiser 8.1
#443372 - 11/03/08 11:14 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: etyppo]  
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Wow, those look remarkably familiar.....

I've researched the same thing, and have chickened out due to cutting the hull. My fav's were Memphis Audio Marine series and Polk Momo series. The only thing I didn't like about the Polks was that, with the speakers at foot level in some instances, the grills didn't seem adequate to prevent a foot or ski from damaging them. The nice thing about Memphis was the swivel tweeters can be pointed in the direction you want (need to be pointed up in Cobalts because all the speakers are very low in the hull). Also their grills are more like the Sonys and are very protective.

Good luck in your search, keep us posted!


2004 Cobalt 262 SS tower 496 Mag-SOLD
2007 Malibu 247 Wakesetter LSV 383 Hammerhead
2007 Seadoo GTX Limited SC
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#443383 - 11/04/08 12:17 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: etyppo]  
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SilverDawg Offline
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Originally Posted By: etyppo
I've been thinking about doing the same thing on my 263. It only came with 5.25" Sony speakers and no amps, so I've got more to add. IMO, going overboard with high quality component speakers is a waste of time on a boat given the high ambient noise level that is usually present. I'd go with a set of higher quality coax speakers like Al recommends and possibly add a subwoofer.


Thanks for the info guys. Also, I already have a subwoofer installed so that will be one less item to have to buy.


2004 Cobalt 240 8.1 GiDP - SOLD 4/10
2008 HD Ultra Classic - SOLD 5/10
2010 Mastercraft X45 LY6 400HP
#443391 - 11/04/08 01:25 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: SilverDawg]  
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kenhdog Offline
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I have those Sony's also. They are indeed 2-ways. I installed them as upgrades to the Kenwood dual cone/ whizzer's that came with the boat.

They are good speakers and sound good with my Bazooka sub. I recall looking at Kenwood, Pioneer, JVC and the Sonys at one time. The only ones I think might have been better than the Sony's in that size would have been some Pioneer 2-ways, or the JVC's. They both required a bit of cutting (widening the opening), so I chickened out. I think both the Pioneer's and the JVC's might have offered a little more bass response, but the Sony's were not far behind if I recall. Went with the Sony's since they were literally plug and play (no cutting...)

I'm not sure how much better you can get in that size speaker, maybe Infinity, or those Pioneers or JVC's that I chickened out on.....


2002 Rinker 212 Captiva
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#443399 - 11/04/08 08:40 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: kenhdog]  
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Polks would be a nice upgrade

Last edited by captkevin; 11/04/08 10:46 AM.

2004 Rinker 232
2010 Dodge Ram Crew Cab Laramie 4x4
#443430 - 11/04/08 11:59 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: SilverDawg]  
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beej Offline
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Originally Posted By: SilverDawg
Originally Posted By: etyppo
I've been thinking about doing the same thing on my 263. It only came with 5.25" Sony speakers and no amps, so I've got more to add. IMO, going overboard with high quality component speakers is a waste of time on a boat given the high ambient noise level that is usually present. I'd go with a set of higher quality coax speakers like Al recommends and possibly add a subwoofer.


Thanks for the info guys. Also, I already have a subwoofer installed so that will be one less item to have to buy.


My '09 shipped with Kicker speakers and subwoofer driven by Alpine amps. I think it sounds great. I know it's certainly an improvement over the stock system I had in my previous Cobalt. The sub really makes a signficant difference in the sound!

etyppo--if you do a major system upgrade, you might want to consider adding a second battery in not already equipped.


2009 Cobalt 242
#443523 - 11/04/08 07:49 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: kenhdog]  
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Al Offline
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Originally Posted By: kenhdog
I have those Sony's also. They are indeed 2-ways. I installed them as upgrades to the Kenwood dual cone/ whizzer's that came with the boat.


My mistake then as I thought those "Dolphin" Sonys had whizzers.

I had a pair of Sony MP1650Ws, which are one of Sony's current two way offering in the 6.5" size; bought them new, and they only lasted until the warranty ran out. For "marine grade" speakers, they did not last long, and I was very disappointed. I replaced them with Polks and after two seasons of being directly out in the weather, no problem.

Now, I am not going to say that this might happen to anyone else as maybe I got a bad pair, but if you look at the photo, the cone has seperated from the surround - so I think the glue let loose.



By the way, the "tweeters" in this speaker are built into the grille, as you will notice there are no whizzer cones on this speaker.

OK, I know the thought here - maybe I was playing the music too loud. But they blew out while I was listening to Enya!!!

These speakers were just over a year old when they failed, and while this event is simply my personal experience, I don't think I'll ever buy any more speakers of that brand (besides, I think the Polks sound better).

I like Polk partly because they have been long known to be a premier speaker manufacturer - in the high-end home audio market long before they got into the car stereo business - Polk is part of the north-east US corridor contingent of companies that is responsible for some of the finest speakers in the world.

The issue is that these speakers are not protected whatsoever, and are right out in the environment. So they tend to take a beating with the weather. I have Polks there right now, and I have even washed the boat and directly put a spray of water on them without even a second thought.

This is the 11 year old Clarion speaker that I replaced with the Sony speakers. Again, they are marine grade, but UV damage from the sun eventually rotted the cones. Note that these are "whizzers".



So this simply illustrates that the environment I am using the speakers in is harsh. You can see in this photo where the Polk speaker is - that it is right out in the open. Of course, the Polks have only been there two seasons, so we'll see how they hold up over time. But I cannot fault the Clarions for failing after 11 years - that seems a normal life span to me.



I do acknowledge though that the grille surrounds could be maybe a bit better. I would not be as concerned about kicking the grilles in as the are pretty stout, but I would worry about puncturing the cones with some object rolling around the boat.

However, I think someone makes an aftermarket billet aluminum grille for the Polks.

I have 4 Polk db650s, 2 Polk db550s, 2 Polk db400s, and a Polk subwoofer on board. Over the winter, I am doing a major stereo upgrade, and next year, I plan on adding two more Polk db651s outside.


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#443536 - 11/04/08 09:09 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: Al]  
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kenhdog Offline
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There does exist a dual cone version of the Sony dolphin speakers. I think they are model XS-MP61

The Polks should be quality. What are the specs? (Which usually for speakers is only a starting point.....Speakers are the only thing I need to listen to before buying regardless of 'spec'....)


2002 Rinker 212 Captiva
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#443650 - 11/05/08 04:17 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: kenhdog]  
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Al Offline
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After looking at the "dolphins" in the above photo it does look to me like they could be 2-way.

One interesting thing about the Polks is that they have a 6dB/Octave crossover (capacitor and coil) attached to them, where most competitors only have a 3dB crossover (simply a capacitor). Just a nice little extra.

But as you say, whatever the specs say, sometimes your ears are the best spec.


Mid/Woofer 1 - 6-1/2" Diameter (16.51cm)
Polymer/Mica Composite cone with rubber surround

Tweeter 1 - 3/4" Diameter (1.91cm)
Silk/Polymer composite dome

Overall Frequency Response 35Hz-22kHz
Nominal Impedance 4 ohms
Power Handling (continuous) 60 w
Power Handling (peak) 180 w
Efficiency 92 dB

Marine Certified (whatever that means - although Correct Craft OEMs them)



I am assuming that the 35Hz low end figure is at -3dB, but nevertheless pretty good bass for a 6" speaker.

I also know that from talking to Polk tech support that the speakers work either in an "infinite baffle" environment, or in a sealed enclosure of 0.25CuFt to 0.3CuFt. I have made several enclosures for these particular speakers, so I am comfortable with the volume specification.

At $90 or so (Amazon.com) prices for a pair, they are pretty competitively priced, I think. I have also seen them under $70 at the discount houses.


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#443693 - 11/05/08 08:07 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: Al]  
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JimmyP Offline
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The Polk speakers are a good low cost replacement for your OEM speakers. They are not high end speakers. They will take most of what you put through them, but with an amp, they can be overdriven....... easily.

If you do like dynamic sound, are heavy on the volume knob, and want a high end speaker that will last, try JL Audio. They are a bit pricier than the Polk's, but it's money well spent. Your ears WILL tell the difference.

#443721 - 11/05/08 10:12 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: JimmyP]  
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kenhdog Offline
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The Polk Specs look pretty similat to the specs for the Sony XS-MP62's that he has:

Features:
6 1/2" Two-way Design
Strontium Magnet
White Cosmetic Design
Water Resistant
Synthetic resinated grill cover
High density composite polypropylene cone woofer

Specifications:
Maximum Input Power 140 W
Rated Input Power 35 W
Impedance 4 ohms
Sensitivity 91 dB/W/m
Frequency Response 35 - 26,000 Hz (Seen 40 - 20K on other sites)
Mounting Diameter 125 mm (5")
Mounting Depth 97 mm (3 7/8")
Weight 1500 g (3 lb. 5 oz.)

Higher Freq Response (can't hear that high anyway), but lower power handling, and a touch (negligible) lower efficiency....


2002 Rinker 212 Captiva
Merc 5.7 EFI Alpha
Trail-Rite Trailer
1999 GMC 'Burb
#443748 - 11/06/08 02:58 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: kenhdog]  
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etyppo Offline
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What's the preferred method of cutting fiberglass? I'd like to upgrade the cockpit speakers to 6.5" if I went to the trouble of replacing them and adding an amp, which would require enlarging the existing holes.


2006 Cobalt 263 Mercruiser 8.1
#443854 - 11/06/08 06:05 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: etyppo]  
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Ford Offline
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In my boat I installed MB Quart marine speakers. I am driving them with a JL Audio 6 channel amp. I have been very happy with this set up. I found them online for about $100.00 per pair. I bought them from this site http://www.sonicelectronix.com

As far as cutting the fiberglass, I used a drill and course sanding drum to enlarge the speaker cut outs. It worked well but made a lot of dust to clean up.

I am wanting to add another amp and a sub in the future but have not been brave enough to cut a big hole in my boat, yet!


2008 Cobalt 232 5.7 Gi
#443899 - 11/06/08 10:26 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: Ford]  
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Al Offline
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Ken;

Looks about the same spec wise, and the 1dB is not going to be detectable by ear. There are many attributes to a speaker that go beyond published specs, and simply comparing specs without listening is pretty hard. And I completely agree with you that, speakers are very subjective and a hearing test is usually warranted (if you can find a decent shop to compare them).

And of course, how long they last...

etyppo;

When drilling holes for speakers, remember that gel coat is very brittle, and when disturbing the edge, you can easily chip it. Cutting a hole slightly smaller then using a sanding drum is an effective method.

Unfortunately, a 6" hole saw is fairly expensive, and you usually need a drill with a 1/2" chuck. A jig saw is a good alternative - but even then, you really need a high-quality saw that has the horsepower and maybe more important - a blade mounting mechanism that provides good support. I have a Bosch jig saw and works great for this application.

I would suggest also using some blue-tape around the hole so that you don't scratch the gel coat with the jig saw base, should you use one.


President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#443911 - 11/07/08 12:37 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: SilverDawg]  
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My boat came with 4 of the same speakers and the 6 pack changer with x-plod sony system new in 04,, before I launched it in 7-04 I upgraded with a 10" woofer and a 500 watt amp.. I installed the amp to power the woofer only at the time knowing that I would have to rewire and upgrade speakers in the future.. This year 5/08 I installed 4 JBL marine speakers and powered them from the front channel of amp and the woofer is powered by the rear channel... the system sounds awsome... Being wired this way the channels off of the head unit remain unussed..

Get 6 of these speakers and wire in your amps and you will by ready to rock...

good luck..


#443919 - 11/07/08 02:36 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: challenger3x2]  
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etyppo Offline
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Al - thanks for the input. I actually have a Bosch jigsaw, but after thinking about it more, I think I may just use higher quality stock size replacements for the existing speakers to cut down on installation difficulty and add a subwoofer in the same location the factory uses (which would require cutting) Does anybody have experience with this sub?: http://www.crutchfield.com/app/product/item/main.aspx?i=136M10IB5C&search=JL+Audio+marinespeakers


2006 Cobalt 263 Mercruiser 8.1
#443925 - 11/07/08 05:42 AM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: JimmyP]  
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Al Offline
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Originally Posted By: JimmyP
The Polk speakers are a good low cost replacement for your OEM speakers. They are not high end speakers. They will take most of what you put through them, but with an amp, they can be overdriven....... easily.

If you do like dynamic sound, are heavy on the volume knob, and want a high end speaker that will last, try JL Audio. They are a bit pricier than the Polk's, but it's money well spent. Your ears WILL tell the difference.


I wouldn't call anything in a boat or car high-end.

While JL Audio makes some fine equipment, I would not necessarily consider Polks cheap. I am using Polk's DB series which are the least expensive.

But you can spend up to $900 for a single pair of Polk SR series 6.5" car speakers if you feel the need.

However, I don't really think its necessary to spend that much when a $100 pair will do - I mean, we're still talking about a boat environment.



President and CEO - Napmoor and Doolittle.


2004 Mercury 270 Dinghy.
2016 Grand Design Reflection 29RS 5th Wheel
2016 GMC Sierra 2500HD SLT 6.6L Diesel

previous boats:
1995 Carver 325
1999 Four Winns 268
1999 Four Winns 225
1996 Rinker 180
#444339 - 11/10/08 06:34 PM Re: Replacement speakers for 2004 Cobalt 240 [Re: Al]  
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JimmyP Offline
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Originally Posted By: Al
Originally Posted By: JimmyP
The Polk speakers are a good low cost replacement for your OEM speakers. They are not high end speakers. They will take most of what you put through them, but with an amp, they can be overdriven....... easily.

If you do like dynamic sound, are heavy on the volume knob, and want a high end speaker that will last, try JL Audio. They are a bit pricier than the Polk's, but it's money well spent. Your ears WILL tell the difference.


I wouldn't call anything in a boat or car high-end.

Then you have not listened to enough boat stereo's recently.

While JL Audio makes some fine equipment, I would not necessarily consider Polks cheap. I am using Polk's DB series which are the least expensive.

I don't believe I said they were cheap. Inexpensive yes, cheap no.

But you can spend up to $900 for a single pair of Polk SR series 6.5" car speakers if you feel the need.

However, I don't really think its necessary to spend that much when a $100 pair will do - I mean, we're still talking about a boat environment.

Obviously, the Polks' you have "will do" for you, but that doesn't mean they will for someone else. And, if you spend your hard earned money on a boat, spend every weekend during the season on it, enjoy music, then there is nothing wrong with spending money to have a speaker system that reflects all the investment you have in that "boat environment" we love so well.


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