2019 JLRU Knee speaker problems w/ alpine 8.4

photo2000a

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Wanted to see if anyone has this issue, and or what they did to resolve... Sorry if i sound frustrated...

Problem, my knee speakers are very low in volume, compared to the other speakers and worst part is they are very distorted.
It is NOT the issue w/the speaker or speaker parts rattling , the foam 'fix' was applied at dealer anyway. I was aware of this campaign tsb.
The speakers were according to the dealer, also replaced, same issue.
The head unit was replaced, didn't fix it. actually seemed a bit worse. picked up some static on right front knee speaker wasn't there before was unf a refirb unit.

Noticed by accident that when i go into the fader screen, that when i put the dot into the upper left or upper right corner. the knee speakers become clean, no distortion. Unfortunately. I can't really use the system that way. I also noticed there is a slight difference in distortion vs source (FM/SAT/Iphone) but all are awfully distorted in center/normal fader. Distortion dosn't change until the fader dot is in the upper left/or right corner then it seems to magically clear up...

I don't know too much about the alpine system, guessing that since the problem is altered by manipulating the fader, it might be a problem in the head unit not sure, perhaps if an ext amp feeds those particular speakers it could still be a bad amp dunno. but that is far as I can go.

The dealer while very nice wasn't able to do anything further wasnt sure if there was a amp in question that should /shouldn't be replaced so didn't push it as a random ask. seems there approach was just replacing things. w/o diagnostic abilities nor any help from FCA.

""""JEEPCARES""""", was involved , talked a good game, didn't help, didn't communicate w/me--didn't return a single call, ignored 99% email, and todate remains the single worst customer service experience I've ever had(not just auto related) that said it is also the only bad customer service experience I've had, and remains the only problem that has been open unresolved since I got the vehicle about a yr ago, that is my rant ... IF i asked JC any questions or anything I never got any real responses mostly just ignored and the few things they suggested like take it to the dealer ...seems they didn't communicate w/them any better either.. or have any real bonafide help -lesson learned even if they couldn't help fix, least they could have communicated w/me, returned a call, answered a email oh well.

figured it should be a simple customer service matter to fix a stereo given over 1yr and like 10+ trips. regret paying extra for the upgraded system since ironically listening to other lower non alpine jeeps. no distortion ...

I also noticed the problem might be systemic, as. I got the keys for a few jeeps on the lot. same model, close prod run, and many had similar issues, perhaps it was a particular production run bad (or all they didn't have any newer ones for me to test listen)... dunno

Perhaps I should lemon the vehicle? my attorney says i am still in the window and have a text book case for what ever that is worth.

maybe my theories about the manipulation of the fader and what was done might help shed some light and inch me closer to a resolution if someone technical at FCA is watching

So just looknig to see if anyone has encountered this particular type of issue?? Driving it around with basically doa knee speakers while paying top dollar is killin' me. Id like it fixed if anyone has a solution.

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LSguy

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If you have the alpine system then yes, you have an external amplifier. Interestingly, I feel like my knee speakers were also quiet and fuzzy sounding. Only played a super small frequency band. I never noticed though until I replaced them, because I removed them to do a sound check. New speakers and new pods sounded basically identical. My only assumption is that it's the way the amp is programmed. Using that 4 inch driver as midbass notes only. That factory knee pod is also ported, so it's going to be tuned to a specific frequency, though I'm not sure what frequency. This was one of the reasons I junked the factory alpine system. There was zero tuning, so replacing speakers helped sound very little since the factory amp wouldn't let them play to their potential.
 
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photo2000a

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Good points LSguy, i agree w/your discoveries, if I was able to come up w/a few extra thousands , I suppose one could get the alpine or other upgrade that allows for continued jeep integration def one way i could fix it, but also same hand feel like i shouldn't have to :)
While in the jeep i always felt like i couldn't hear the speakers. only until i bent down and put my head/ear to the actual speaker did I go oh wow... guessing many won't notice it dunno
 

LSguy

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I agree that you shouldn't have to, but it is still a factory system after all. You could do it fairly cheaply if you wanted, I'd guess under a grand total if you wanted a cheap system that out performs the alpine. I'm building a SQ build in the thread below this, and even with using pretty quality stuff I'm in it for around 1300. That's running higher in amps, $400 morel comps, all Stinger tinned ofc wiring and RCAs etc.
 
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photo2000a

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Well I toyed w/that idea, thing is w/the 8.4 you have certain settings and features non sound related in that control screen. Def don't want to loose those so that really narrows down options also, catch 22 is that i can't really say what component is causing the issue, is it something inbetween the head and speaker? or is it a bad head unit? If the head unit is bad and putting out a bad signal, then spending money. on components after it really dosn't do it, i'll just be amping a bad signal =problem worse .

Some problems throwing money at it might be a good easy way, but I am thinking in this. case. finding a technical resolution might be the best way, that said if the head unit itself /software is bad. only FCA could really fix that. unless they are focused in general on customer service or so many people complain thinking I maybe stuck in that grey area since my past exp w/FCA wasn't too fruitful.

But. I have a older car. had the basic stereo i designed a super nice system sounds great didn't cost much but that is another story. but if i could just. replace the amp/speakers. i'd be ok with that. in fact would love to, but. guessing. it's the head unit and i don't want to tear the car apart, spend time , money. swapping out the amp on a long shot/random guess.

Also in the back of my mind, I am afraid to touch this right now as I don't want to hear FCA say i violated the warranty even if i didn't...just in case.

LSguy not trying to be argumentative, i do appreciate your taking the time to contribute, some good. points. just thinking out loud ...

Just to be clear if the stereo was poor and i complain, then yes. i'ts on me to upgrade as usually (not always) the manuf units are not good but inthe case whereby it is totally broken non functional. as in my case the sound coming out of the speakers in questions are totally distorted then. my thoughts are manu should fix anything broken under normal warranty. apologize if i come accross. angry or anything.
 

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So I don't believe yours is broken, unless it's way worse than I'm thinking it is. Maybe mine was broken as well though who knows. I'm putting my money on the amp being the issue, it is what does all of the sound processing for your system. You don't need to replace the head unit to install a new system. Grab a DSR1 and bypass the factory amp to your aftermarket amps and speakers. Its the easiest way that I've found to do it, keeps your head unit and all functions, and gives you a dsp to tune the system. All plug and play, so no cutting involved.
 
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here is why i don't think it's the amp- i can be wrong, since i move that dot from center to upper left or right on the fader and it clears up. signal originates in the head unit, the amps. just amp what ever signal they get. if the amp was bad. then nothing i could do at the head unit would resolve it, so that was why i was guessing it is the head.

now if you tell me the head unit doesn't put out a analog audio signal to that amp, if you say it's a pure digital bit stream and the amp does outboard processing etc then. yeah i would more likely to be 50/50 right or wrong... and i'd force them to swap the amp.

prob not bad wiring, prob not a bad amp--and yes it's way worse then you think. the sound is totally 100% distorted sounds like a person underwater maybe worse. i'd look the other way otherwise, but like i said w/o test gear or the pro's at FCA i couldnt say for sure the issue cause is, but i can sure say. it's totally distorted. other speakers are ok :). I can't really afford to just replace the amp as a random test or risk a warranty fight. hopefully FCA will step up. prob wouldn't be the hardest thing for them to fix. prob something simple, it's just a stereo they just are not caring -- or as a forced choice alternative just explore LEMON option. If you were closer i'd like you to give a listen.

Maybe someone here has had a exact same problem and might share their resolution path with FCA. vs replacing w/after mkt. .fingers crossed. again thanks for the. tips.
 

LSguy

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here is why i don't think it's the amp- i can be wrong, since i move that dot from center to upper left or right on the fader and it clears up. signal originates in the head unit, the amps. just amp what ever signal they get. if the amp was bad. then nothing i could do at the head unit would resolve it, so that was why i was guessing it is the head.

now if you tell me the head unit doesn't put out a analog audio signal to that amp, if you say it's a pure digital bit stream and the amp does outboard processing etc then. yeah i would more likely to be 50/50 right or wrong... and i'd force them to swap the amp.

prob not bad wiring, prob not a bad amp--and yes it's way worse then you think. the sound is totally 100% distorted sounds like a person underwater maybe worse. i'd look the other way otherwise, but like i said w/o test gear or the pro's at FCA i couldnt say for sure the issue cause is, but i can sure say. it's totally distorted. other speakers are ok :). I can't really afford to just replace the amp as a random test or risk a warranty fight. hopefully FCA will step up. prob wouldn't be the hardest thing for them to fix. prob something simple, it's just a stereo they just are not caring -- or as a forced choice alternative just explore LEMON option. If you were closer i'd like you to give a listen.

Maybe someone here has had a exact same problem and might share their resolution path with FCA. vs replacing w/after mkt. .fingers crossed. again thanks for the. tips.
Well I can't say for sure if it's analog or digital, but I can tell you that all of the signal processing is done at the amp. Thats why when you are installing aftermarket equipment you grab the signal after the HU while it's still clean, before it's processed by the amp. The factory amps do not work like aftermarket amps. They serve way more functions than just amplifying signals.
 
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hmm plot thickens. if that amp is getting. the signal from the head. that does the fader settings its possible it could be the amp. but guessing the head controls that... w.o test gear or the designer experts that know all the details. best i can do is. say. prob the head. but could be the amp. if i had my own garage i'd love to just pull out the head. and. grab the signal at back of head n test it. not counting disassembly the test would be a 2min job. maybe i am getting stubborn in my beliefs

i may also see if i can swing by a dealer w/a 2020 or 21 on the lot. and give a quick listen ... if they have that issue it's less hopeful for a fix.
 

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Your amp is easily accessible, right above the drivers kick panel. It's possible that you could pull the signal there and test, I believe there is a pin diagram stickied in this forum. The reason I feel like it's your amp, besides that fact that the amp does all signal processing (including time alignment for the fader), is that it feels extremely unlikely that you got 2 bad head units. Not impossible, but unlikely.
 

Mike921921

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Well I toyed w/that idea, thing is w/the 8.4 you have certain settings and features non sound related in that control screen. Def don't want to loose those
What settings and features? I went from the 7 to a Stinger and actually gained features.....
 
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hmm if it's doing time alignment. you took my theory of 75head 25 amp and flipped it. and good idea. to test at the amp vs taking head out. def makes it easier. wish i knew a cool/smart stereo shop around here...
 
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settings features> havac, seats heat , jeep offroad pages etc. online manual, lots more in there then just radio. so didnt want to loose those features (assuming the head was swapped w/a simple head) and that aftermkt alpine was too $$. and for what ever reason states not compat w/the 8.4-- their was another 3rd party head. forgot brand. but. didn't seem to like it that said if the amp was bad then jeep would just swap it under warranty if it worked i'd be happy
 

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settings features> havac, seats heat , jeep offroad pages etc. online manual, lots more in there then just radio. so didnt want to loose those features (assuming the head was swapped w/a simple head) and that aftermkt alpine was too $$. and for what ever reason states not compat w/the 8.4-- their was another 3rd party head. forgot brand. but. didn't seem to like it that said if the amp was bad then jeep would just swap it under warranty if it worked i'd be happy
If you really want to know, but don't want to test it yourself, call around to some audio shops. They'll have DSR1s in stock 99% chance. See if they have the cable for your jeep. It wouldn't take them 10 minutes to troubleshoot. They unplug the wiring to your factory amp, plug in the dsr1, and run the dsr1 outputs to an external amp. I'm not guaranteeing you that they would perform the test, but its worth asking at least.

If they won't do the test, could always purchase the dsr1 for $250, test it yourself, and then return it lol.

Or keep going in circles with the dealer and FCA. I chose not to go this route personally.
 
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that is another. interesting idea. seems pretty simple. just need to find a good. stereo shop, might come in handy for other projects. thanks v much
 

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