Soft top versus hard top

Roky

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I am thinking about getting a soft top. Was wondering about the noise level. I’ve got the 3 piece freedom top. It’s a little noisy as it is. Has anyone switched that can give some insight on this? Thanks.
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OldGuyNewJeep

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Love my premium soft top. I don’t have/desire a hard top.

 

Rubi-Zero

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It’s amaing how refined and quite it is compared to soft tops from the past. I don’t even have to raise my voice to keep a conversation at highway speeds.
 

bam1111

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I have both the premium soft top and the hard top. Though the soft top is great, my hard top is much quieter. Love them both.
 

VA72mlibu

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I’m pretty sure my soft top JL is quieter than my hard top JK.
 

zamboniman

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Can't comment on the JL yet. But on the old TJ the hard was quieter, but surprisingly the soft was warmer in the winter. The soft insulated better and didn't transmit the ambient cold as much.
 

Flip888

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Yes I have the same experience with the soft top being warmer. That was a big surprise to me.
 
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Roky

Roky

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We like to go topless sometimes too, and the new convertible hard top , according to most people I’ve talked to, say it’s not an easy task to remove it.
 

Covfefe

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We like to go topless sometimes too, and the new convertible hard top , according to most people I’ve talked to, say it’s not an easy task to remove it.
If you want to be topless as well as keep the noise down then I think this powered soft top is the perfect fit for you

Triple layered to make it quieter and more insulated than the stock hardtop. Plus it's cheaper than Jeep's sliding hard top
 

RussJeep1

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Wow: really varied responses. I'm in the camp that says the hard top is quieter, being a Dual top owner--meaning I am comparing the hard top to the premium soft top, not the basic soft top, for whatever that's worth--no disrespect to Mr. Halon's video. I respect him.

OP: I suspect there to be little noise difference between the basic and premium soft top, but there's an important distinction I hope you appreciate OP:

The JL "comes with" the basic soft top. Any other options, be it a Premium Soft top, hard top, a Dual Top (which comes with a Premium Soft top) or the Power top are financial reduced in priced by FCA over market value because you are "giving back" the included basic soft top for them to outfit another rig with. That's why they're less expensive at purchase. (Yeah, ha, ha, "less expensive.")

Yet another option is to go with the Hard top and acquire Bestop's (who makes FCA's soft and premium soft tops for them) Sunrider top: whose shipping has or is about to begin. https://www.bestop.com/products/sunrider-for-hardtop-2018-jeep-wrangler-jl/

(Sunrider definition: 1) a Bestop product AND the 2) 1st position of either FCA soft top (made by Bestop) in its open state: confusing!)

Unlike the soft top, the Sunrider product, like the power top, can be open/closed intra-rig; Sunrider product owners report even while the rig is moving: useful for that rapidly approaching thunderstorm.

True: movement of the power soft top on or off the rig (not to be confused with opening or closing it) is, I hear, not a DIY, especially an alone (void of crane and rigging hardware) type task, more that assigned to the dealer (read: cost). But the question also begs why one might want to make such a switch on anything but a permanent basis, seeing that the power soft top might be all things to all people. Right now, your request that the dealer take it off (or put it on) is likely to be the first time they've done it.

The power top wasn't available when I bought my JL in April. Had it been I likely still would not have been interested because the implementation had yet to see owner testing over time, it might be potentially noisier than a hard top, and because its correct operation was to my mind as mission critical to operating the rig as would be, the correct operation of its engine. I had these fears that after a great day of riding with the power top open, it would not close, prior to an inclement day, where best case scenario would find me parking it under a roof to take to the dealer when the skies were once again rain/snow free, for mechanics who'd likely never seen one before to service. And as we all know, dealer service isn't the classic "rebuild the broken part type work." It's diagnose, tune and replace if necessary. And that, warranties notwithstanding, still takes time, and possibly money. The soft and hard tops are, if nothing else, "manual," the latter harder to break into or destroy: at least if a knife is the thief's chosen/only tool.

Depending upon how well the power top sells, and I am guessing it won't be on more than 5% of JLs produced if that, to me, that means that even if an aftermarket headliner for it would prove to keep down noise (in winter,) or serve as a rain shield in the event of it failing to close (properly read: leaks, partial closing), that the money put into to developing it for such a small market segment might not be there.

If you want a power opening soft top, vendors not only report ones for the JL to be released soon, but you can do my DIY (if first or Sunrider position and an FCA top is fine by you): instructions for which I've almost completed, and which will be out way before Spring. https://www.jlwranglerforums.com/forum/threads/diy-power-soft-top.13374/#post-326874

My solution isn't for you if you want to go with the soft top fully down. Then brand myTop, when it releases its JL solution, https://mytop.us/ might be right for you and it won't involve removing and reinstalling the back windows; and likely, for better or worse, to have an angled back (Fastback) rear: great on looks, less so somewhat on cargo area storage.
 
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RussJeep1

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If you want to be topless as well as keep the noise down then I think this powered soft top is the perfect fit for you

Triple layered to make it quieter and more insulated than the stock hardtop. Plus it's cheaper than Jeep's sliding hard top
Cheaper: perhaps in two ways. One in price (I suspect your reference compared to FCA's power top) second in the fact that this "play" also leaves you with a basic soft top your rig came with to sell in the open market should you wish, effectively subsidizing the myTop's (your referenced top's) cost .

The power top from FCA, for all its expense, is a subsidized (ha ha, I know) product at purchase compared to its so called fair market value because you are surrendering back to FCA the basic soft top the rig is outfitted with for them to use on building other rigs, and they are crediting you for that in the power top's purchase at sale.
 

RussJeep1

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It’s amaing how refined and quite it is compared to soft tops from the past. I don’t even have to raise my voice to keep a conversation at highway speeds.
I not only respectfully disagree, at least compared to my hard top (I know you compare it to soft tops of days past) I find this a "feature" depending upon my riders, in their inability to converse: and I don't mean sneakers.;)

(Tongue in cheek): why would anyone even talk in a Wrangler and not shut up and enjoy the experience:

 
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RussJeep1

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I have both the premium soft top and the hard top. Though the soft top is great, my hard top is much quieter. Love them both.
this /\ for me too
 
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I am facing the Hard Top vs Soft Top dilemma as we speak. I am ready to pull the trigger on a Sahara and the only option I go back and forth on is which top to get. I don't really have a place to put a hard top when I take it off, but I think the hard top looks better and isn't as noisy . I see a lot of soft tops that after a period of time droop and the windows look wrinkled. I just wish that you could still get the wiring put in for the hard top (wipers and defrost) if you order a soft top only so when I get to point in my life that I have a garage I can retrofit a hard top. My jeep salesman said they don't do that.
 
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