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Articles & Videos: Signal Processors

Factory sound processors take your factory stereo's signal, clean it up, and send a corrected audio signal to your aftermarket amps and subwoofers.

A car can be a great place to enjoy music, but many commuters still put up with marginal sound quality that they'd never tolerate at home. Here are some tips on how to improve your vehicle's sound, whether you're listening on a simple factory system or a multi-channel amplified setup.

Life with a factory stereo
by Charlie Pastorfield

Many new vehicles incorporate climate controls and other features into their factory radios, making it difficult to install a new stereo. Car stereo manufacturers have responded with a variety of products for upgrading your factory radio. Don't want to replace your radio? Charlie Pastorfield reviews some of your options.

Video: JL Audio CleanSweep®
by Robert Ferency-Viars, Ken Nail

Crutchfield's experts take a look at the JL Audio CleanSweep sound processor.

Another informal vid shot by Matt sitting in the back seat with the Canon XSi camera. Gotta say, the content of the video aside, that the camera does an awesome job capturing HD sights...

How to choose an equalizer
by Crutchfield Writing Team

Besides giving you tight tonal control over your music playback, equalizers offer you plenty of other useful features. Find out how to choose the one that's right for you.

How to choose a crossover
by Buck Pomerantz

Looking for a crossover? Do you need a crossover? There are several different types - make sure you choose wisely to optimize your system.

Properly tweaked, your car or truck can be a fantastic place to listen to music. But in order to achieve that level of enjoyment, you need to compensate for some of its natural limitations. Achieving great imaging is a matter of understanding your components, and how they interact with your vehicle and the people sitting in it.

What are firmware updates?
by Robert Ferency-Viars

What exactly is firmware, and why is it so important? This article answers those questions, and offers some advice on how to keep your gear's firmware up to date.

Laying the Foundation, Part 3
by Michael Sokolowski

Now that the receiver's in and the iPod is hooked up (see my first two posts for the full scoop), what about equalization and other signal processing for the system?  While I wait...

Harold Jones, winner of  Virginia's IASCA Sound Quality Challenge, was kind enough to drop by Headquarters to show off his impressive ride. The centerpiece of...

In Part 3 of our series: Jeff upgraded his speakers again, ran higher-quality wire, and added a processor to sculpt the sound. He had to modify the F-150's door a little to get the speakers to fit — but when you want the best, there's no need to let a little modification get in the way.

Lynn wanted better sound in her minivan, but didn't want to lose some factory features. So she installed a digital signal processor from Rockford Fosgate to take over the tunes, and added new speakers, an amp, and a sub for a complete overhaul.

A Rockford Fosgate system gave the family minivan a major audio overhaul while still keeping the manufacturer's dual DVD players intact for the kids.

Kicker's Front Row digital signal processor puts your music where it should be: right up in front of you, instead of down around your knees. A wired remote control panel lets you center the music to your listening position, add bass, and engage a simulated 5.1 Surround Sound that makes it seem like you're sitting in the front row.

Crutchfield car A/V editor and longtime musician Charlie put a new system in his convertible a little while back, and while his sound vastly improved it was missing something at first. After tuning his system with AudioControl, he could turn it up without any distortion.

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