I’m an avid if not hard core car audio guy!
(YES!!! I’m a HARD CORE CAR AUDIO GUY!!!)
Those that have been to my seminars think I’m CRAZY!! Well I am, kinda. I teach a “different” way. I make you think about what you’re doing when installing and how physics effects everything you do in car audio. And how audio ACTUALLY works “in-car”. For many MANY years I traveled the world and trained installers/salesmen and owners. I’ve been to over 22 countries and tweaked and tuned over a 5,000 cars and fixed the sound systems or gotten noise out of another 5,000 cars . I’ve tested “In-Car” more audio systems than most installers have every seen. Power, Current, noise issues, sound problems, you name it I’ve seen it. As they say “Been there Done that” on an order of magnitude.
So you get to know me better -Lets start at the beginning shall we? This is so you have a good feeling why you should be here. I was born a LONG time ago. Most of my car audio industry “buddies” tell everyone that I was THERE when the earth was cooling. Ok… so I remember “Sheriff John” in the afternoon when we were kids and “Sky King” on Saturday mornings. So yeah, I am old But …VERY experienced.
When I started in car audio- no one knew what a ground loop was (and if you don’t there is an article about it here!) or induced noise (again? there is an article) or radiated noise. No one knew what “standing waves” were or “out of phase” issues. A handful of us had to figure it all out. Just so you know I was putting in 15 inch woofers in 1976!!! And installing hand-made electronic crossovers in 1977!! LONG before they were commercially available. This was all happening at a new car audio company called “AudioMobile” In 1978…. I helped Rich Coe build the loudest car system in the world (up till that time) of over 150dB. And that was with a 1000 watt car audio amplifier and 2-15 inch Altec 411-8A woofers (super modified). Audiomobile went on to totally change car audio as any one knew it at the time. The biggest influence Audiomobile had on the industry was to get manufacturers (like Concord, Blaupunkt, Clairon) to add pre-amp outputs to their radios. Alpine didn’t exist yet!!!
Now getting back to Rich’s “1 KW VW” – which was as serious milestone in car audio history -150dB in 1978!!!
If you do the math (this is called the “DB log” an easy method to figure out the mathematical possibility of in-car SPL, BEFORE building the system! Click here to go to that article) This vehicle is the infamous “1KW-VW” of Rich Coe’s. An unbelievable feat even today with the technology available (again go to this article to understand why the 1KW VW was so amazing). After Audiomobile went out of business I went to work for myself and started my own car audio store. I did some installer /sales training on the “side” for a large retailer in San Francisco called Matthews. It was supposed to be a 6 day training. But that turned into 6 weeks of training! Which was good for me, and told me that there was a real need for training (knowledge) at ALL levels of car audio. Retail or end user.
After doing Car Audio retail for 2 years (in an industrial park, because we were SO..ooo good people would hunt us down…Yeah…that didnt work) and killing myself working stupid hours, no days off I got an opportunity to work for a new car audio company – Proton. Here is where I learned a LOT about production techniques, materials, time lines, etc. I designed a whole line of car audio products , amplifiers, speakers, electronic crossovers, even head units. I quit there because they were crazy and went to work for Altec Lansing, in Anaheim CA. I became the car audio guy there as they had no idea what it took to do car audio. They totally got commercial sound and big arenas and stadiums, but car audio? It was a joke to them. Until they saw how much business it brought them. I wrote all the owners manuals and did all the technical illustrations for them and for our tech tips that I sent out to our retailers. Got to spend a bunch of time with tweeko speaker engineers and a anechoic chamber measuring speaker performance . Better yet, “blind” listening tests as I was in charge of our marketing departments research group. Now that was REALLY interesting and I learned a lot about speakers, polar response, power response, frequency response, edge hole problems, defaction, reflection, etc. Below is an magazine AD we did (I got to play art director too 🙂 )
(by the way those are REAL Voice of the Theater A7’s in the back seat of that Buick!!
I know cause I tied the BIG a@# rope around them!)
I left there when they decided that they had done everything that they could possible do for car audio (they hadn’t even scratched the surface!!) I then went to work for Alpine. At Alpine I worked with marketing and developed training courses and helped design and build the CES show display. I traveled all over the USA and did slide show training (before there was PowerPoint!!)