Automakers who believe the best way to navigate an infotainment system is by poking a screen convene in the first geography. The brands who argue installing a touchpad or a dial on the center console is more intuitive defend the second landmass.
Lexus actually has roots on both sides of this argument. It started its tech journey in the touchscreen republic, but it later sought refuge in the touchpad nation. Michael Moore, the national manager of Lexus product marketing, told me his team ultimately settled in the neutral zone between the two to let customers choose which side they pledge allegiance to. The screen itself is new, too. Even the smaller screen stands out with sharp graphics, a quick response time, and a logical menu structure.
Lexus launched the RX in Costa Rica, which is not the ideal place to discover the ins and outs of a new infotainment system. Why did the iguana cross the road? The slightest lapse of attention promises to feed the RX a coconut tree through its spindle grille.
Lexus did its homework, though. Navigation, audio, phone, climate, and car settings are a poke away. Returning to the home menu requires pressing a physical button on the center console, or pressing the back arrow on the screen to exit the sub-menus one at a time, which is a point against the system. So close, Lexus. So close. Lexus and parent company Toyota spent years firmly resisting Android Auto and Apple CarPlay due to safety and privacy concerns, but neither company could put the wishes of their customers on mute for very long.
Even Lamborghini makes it a priority. Smartphone connectivity and a revamped infotainment system might sound like frivolous updates, but they make a major difference when using the RX daily. Mechanically, the and models are identical. I spent the bulk of my time behind the wheel of the five-seater RXwhich uses a 3. Not all horsepower cars are created equal; while it has a sport mode, the 4,pound RX prefers not to be rushed. Lexus does design, tech, and ride quality in its own way; blazing a path instead of following an existing trail has been one of its values since its inception in The touchscreen in the Lexus RX stands out with sharp graphics, a quick response time, and a logical menu structure.
I avoid another iguana as I bring the RX back to the hotel doubling as my basecamp, drop it off, and grab the keys to the more expensive RX h. Spending a few thousand dollars more adds a gasoline-electric hybrid powertrain that teams the aforementioned V6 with three electric motors to deliver horsepower. To add context, the best mileage you can expect to achieve with the non-hybrid RX is Lexus made small visual changes to both variants of the RX. Look closely, squint, and tilt your head and you just might notice the headlights have a new-look design.I am not very smart when it comes to sound systems.
I love the stock pioneer system in the car. It has great mid and highs. I would just like to add a little more so that i can pump up the volume without the fear of blowing any speakers from the bass.
What do you guys recommend. Im 17 if that explains that last comment. Since both of you are hungry for bass, in my opinion a separate subwoofer in a box would be the best choice. However, you will have to compensate some trunk space. Wow, that is a nice site for a great basic concept of audio systems overall! If anyone knows it would be great to hear it! Im going from a ES ahahah The stock IS audio systems are pretty good. However they aren't ricer boomers like some folks want.
IT gets pretty loud but i just want to add a seperate sub to handle the base. Alright, I just got my IS yesterday and the sound system is great!
The bass is great, I mean its not like car shaking but it sounds very clear and it definately has some decent thump for a stock system! If you really wanted some bass just add a sub.
However its definately ok for me and im 17 years old!! Yeah whatever you do, dont go to Best Buy for install. I went there for my old car and got a nice system put in and i had to bring it back 3 times for them to fix it.
They do crappy, half! You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account. Paste as plain text instead. Only 75 emoji are allowed.And that isn't a judgmental statement. The fact is that the sound system is one of the places that OEMs almost universally neglect in the name of higher profits, and most people don't even realize what they're missing. So how can you tell if your factory audio needs a little tender loving care?
So where do you get started? There are a lot of different ways for a newbie to tear into a factory sound system upgrade, so there are a handful of questions that can help set you on the right path:.
You might be surprised at how the simple act of pondering those five questions will set you on the road to building a great car audio system. One good place for budget-conscious newbies to start is the speakers. Factory speakers are typically pretty anemic, so you may notice a pretty big improvement in your sound by simply replacing your front speakers.
If you do decide to drop in new speakers, it's a good idea to make sure they'll work with your existing head unit. And if you plan on upgrading the head unit in the future, you'll want to take that into consideration as well.
Everyone has different opinions on car audio, and some people just love the look of their factory stereo. If you have a late model car with an integrated infotainment system, it can also be very difficult to upgrade the stereo.
In either case, there are a number of ways to improve a factory sound system without touching the head unit. The first step is to ditch your factory speakers and replace them with premium units. Premium speakers are made out of higher quality materials, so they sound better and last longer than factory speakers.
That alone will typically result in a huge improvement over the factory sound. That might sound like a lot of nonsense, but it basically means that the amplifier will be able to sit between your factory head unit and your new speakers and allow you to turn your music up without any distortion. When you add one or more amplifiers, you also have the option of adding a subwoofer. That will provide you with richer bass, but you can also add a digital sound processor to improve the sound from all of your speakers.
There are a lot of options when you build a car stereo system from the ground up, so a lot of newbies shy away from that sort of drastic change. If you really want to dive in, you might want to start by considering the types of features you want out of your car stereo, which can help you find the perfect head unit. That can be accomplished in one of two ways:.
Powered subwoofers are simpler, but adding an amplifier and a subwoofer gives you more flexibility. Either way, a subwoofer is the best way to get that bass pounding. If you're after the absolute easiest way to add more bass to your car audio system, then a powered amplifier with speaker-level inputs is the way to go.
These units combine an amp and a subwoofer into one unit, so there isn't any guesswork, and they can be hooked up to any factory or aftermarket head unit. This is the absolute easiest way to install a new head unit, and it ensures that you can pop the factory stereo back in any time you want. Tweet Share Email. Go sit in your car, close the doors, and crank up the windows.
Put on your favorite CD and turn up the volume. Listen to the music. How important is your budget? Do you have much money to spend on upgrades? Do you want to improve your sound while keeping your factory stereo?
Would you rather ditch the factory stereo and start fresh? How important is bass? Do you like listening to your music loud?The radio happens to be one of the relatively few parts on a car that aren't really vital to the transportation process. It has no effect on whether we get to our destination safely or on time, but most of us switch it on anyway. Some drivers couldn't imagine being in a car without music, talk radio or even an audio book playing through the speakers.
But the question is, how does it sound when we do switch it on? Is the sound quality decent? On most vehicles, unless the car came with a premium brand name factory option like a Bose, THX or a Mark Levinson system, the answer is likely to be, not really. Those types of high-end sound systems tend to be more prominent on luxury models. Most car audio sound systems and radios won't have ultra-high fidelity sound, thumping bass, or lots of extra features like MP3 player inputs.
Also, while they may emphasize one area of sound, like bass or treble, they may be missing the overall picture. And that's why buying a new stereo system or even simply car audio speakersis a common way to get better sound in your car.
While properly adjusting your stereo's equalizer settings can greatly improve quality, the results won't likely blow your mind as much as a custom car audio system can. There are a number of ways to achieve maximum sound quality with new components.
You can replace the stereo which is sometimes called a receiver or head unitreplace the speakers, install sound-deadening materials to reduce vibration and even add an amplifier. These things can get pretty expensive; however, and fortunately for you, may not need to do all of these steps.
So, how do you get the most out of your car stereo equipment without throwing away money in the process? Top 5 Car Gadgets. Bluetooth Car Stereos. How do I get the best sound out of my car's audio system? Car Gadgets Image Gallery A new car stereo receiver can give you better options, but improved sound quality requires several components.
See more pictures of car gadgets.For decades the car audio aftermarket offered consumers the best possible sound and bang for the buck. But getting a high-end system installed in a car usually meant dropping several thousand dollars and waiting days or even weeks for the finished product to roll out of a stereo shop. Plus, the vehicle would likely be irrevocably altered, and the owner would have to deal with warranty issues and decide whether to rip the stereo out or sell it as is when it came time to part with the car.
While the aftermarket still offers the most flexibility and the absolute ultimate in sound quality, automakers' audio offerings have now ramped up to the point where the tables have turned. It's now possible to get great sound and better value from a stock stereo system. Although this applies across almost every vehicle segment, it's particularly relevant to luxury car shoppers.
Branded "premium" systems have been around since Bose first appeared in high-end GM cars almost 30 years ago, but the past few years have seen a proliferation of partnerships between luxury automakers and audio manufacturers.
To find out how the best OEM audio brands compare, we gathered six vehicles with top-of-the-line systems and put them through a battery of listening tests over the course of several days.
The cars and systems are listed below in descending order of how they ranked in the test.
Lexus RX350 Quick Manual
We used a scoring system in which one to 10 points were assigned in seven sound-quality categories: clarity, tonal balance, timbre, tonal accuracy, sound staging, imaging and dynamics. We then added the points and averaged them to determine a total and a winner. In addition to musical tracks designed to expose flaws in a system's performance, we also used non-musical tracks to test for sound staging, imaging, linearity and absence of noise all of the systems aced the last category.
For systems that played DVD-Audio — as opposed to only offering simulated surround sound — we also judged surround attributes. Finally, although we did our critical listening while sitting still, we drove each vehicle on a loop that included freeways and surface streets to gauge sound quality while on the go.
While the system is impressive and is one of the best available, we found it lacking in several key areas when compared to the rest of the group we tested.
The most obvious was clarity, and in particular distortion-free bass extension. With many of our test tracks, deep bass and strong midbass sounded boomy instead of tight.
Timbre was also flawed, causing acoustic guitars and vocals to sound unnatural, while high-frequency sounds such as cymbals had a slight harshness. Dynamics were also dull, giving some of our tracks a lifeless quality. Although the XFR had an expansive and deeply layered sound stage, imaging was substandard, causing vocals to be side-biased, which was confirmed by our non-musical test tracks. In addition to a stereo setting, the system also has a three-channel mode that further widens the sound stage and slightly improves imaging, as well as an additional Dolby ProLogic II setting, although the latter gave the music an artificial sound.
As in the Jaguar, we found the bass to be a bit overbearing, but otherwise the sound was very detailed, with individual instruments clearly delineated in even the densest, most difficult tracks. The sound stage was a bit constricted — neither wide nor deep — and imaging was a bit fuzzy, as verified by our non-musical test tracks.
The system really shined on the open road with the car's roof opened to the sky. It's difficult for any stereo in a convertible to fight wind and road noise to deliver great sound, but the DBS Volante's does it better than any car we've heard. And while system response remained robust and amazingly accurate at high speeds, it must compete with the car's almost symphonic exhaust tone — and some would argue that the sweetest sound is when the stereo is switched off.
How do I get the best sound out of my car's audio system?
But the 5. The boomy bass we heard in the Jag and Aston was replaced by a smooth, controlled response on all but the most demanding music tracks. The system also consistently scored high on clarity, tonal balance, timbre and tonal accuracy, and it fleshed out nuances in the music that other systems mask.Choose how you want to connect to the audio, mute or unmute your microphone, and turn on or turn off your video before you join a meeting or event.
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This is the default audio connection type.By pjSeptember 9, in 07 - 12 Lexus ES I just got my ES and had a small sub-woofer installed in the trunk. It filled out the bottom beautifully and filled the cabin with a nice rich, full sound. I asked the studio manager about looking at the front door panels to check out what Lexus had installed for speakers. He said he knew what they were as they had done an install on another several months before.
In his words, the install "was a nightmare!
Car Audio Systems For the Total Newbie
They were finally able to come up with a "paint by numbers" solution that they could not really be totally proud of, but could live with and that the customer liked. After this, he said they would not do any more Lexus upgrades because the system is just to custom tuned from the factory. With the addition of the sub, I'm pretty happy with the level of sound quality I have. My question is, has anyone tried to enhance their audio system or change the ES front door speakers?
If so, with what results? I think the point this person was making, and I confirmed this with the dealers accessories manager who also judges car audio competitions, be prepared to start from the head unit and work your way out, bringing lots of money with you.
If you are trying to just swap out the door speakers you'll be disappointed. I have spent some money in my younger years on systems and at this point in my life I guess I am happy with the stock system that I have I do have the ML, but even before that I was ok with it.
I think the best upgrade for the money is what you have done pop a sub in the rear with an amp. This will give you that nice deep bass that the factory is missing.
I think that unless you want to rip the whole thing out and start over then leave the door speakers alone. There is complete integration in some newer models that I would leave as intended from the factory. My main issue with the system is that its weak, music lacks depth unless the volume is turned very loud. No, I left the factory sub in place and took the signal off of it into the amp, then into a small self-contained Kicker Sub-Station.