You’re obviously enthusiastic about getting the best sound out of your car stereo system if you’ve invested in an amp. Knowing how to tune a car amp for mids and highs can be confusing, though.
Here is some information that can help you find the sweet spot of sound quality you’re looking for. I used these tactics when tuning the amp in my vehicle, and it worked great in the end.
What are mids, highs, and lows?
If you want to tune your car amp perfectly, you’ll need to understand what mids, highs, and lows are. These terms refer to frequencies, and in laymen’s terms, the mids are where you hear the voices. The singer’s vocals are usually within the range of 250hz and 2000hz.
The lows usually refer to the bass sounds. The lows are usually at 500hz frequency or lower. They produce those awesome rumbly sounds that some rap fans like to blast in their cars.
The highs start above 2,000hz, and they usually include sounds like high keys on a piano. The high frequencies can also bring vocals to the forefront.
It’s important to adjust your mids, highs, and lows to the way you want to experience music. Not everyone has the same tastes as you. So your tuning will be very personalized and customized to your preferences.
There isn’t really a wrong way to tune a car amp, except when the work you do produces a high level of distortion. The goal is to find levels that are pleasing to your ears without causing loads of distortion.
Why you should start with gain control
The first thing you need to do if you want to get high-quality sound is to adjust the gain control. Gain is not the same thing as volume, and many people assume it is. The easiest way to remember what gain is, is to think of it as tone.
Volume controls the loudness of the output, and gain controls the tone. Having your amp set to the wrong gain can cause all sorts of distortion, and that’s not what you want. So you need to tweak your gain first before you do anything else.
I used my ears to set my gain appropriately, and I suggest you do the same. The first thing I did was play a song through the stereo. I then turned the gain down about halfway. Next, I turned the volume almost to its max level on the stereo and then turned it down from there until I heard zero distortion from the speakers.
Next, I went back to the amp and increased the gain bit by bit until I heard distortion. I stopped it right before the distortion started. That was the best way for me to get the gain in the perfect spot for sound quality.
How to tune a car amp for mids and highs?
Once you go through the above steps, you can toy with the bass and other sounds. You might want to play around with those sounds to see which tailored sound you like.
The high pass filter is something you may want to turn on if you need to block the bass frequencies from your door speakers. My amp had a switch on it that allowed me to flip it on. Yours probably does, too.
You’ll need to flip the switch to activate the filter. Once you activate that filter, you can adjust it anywhere from 80hz to 200hz. You should set your high pass filter to no more than 80hz. Your subwoofer will be able to handle anything below that.
The next thing you’ll need to do is set your low pass filter. The low pass filter plays only the bass, and you can set it lower than 80hz.
Bass boost is an excellent choice if you’re someone who loves that chest-thumping sound beating through your car windows. Setting the bass boost requires some patience and resilience.
You will need to set the gain down at the same time as you turn the bass boost up. Do this as much as you can without hearing distortion. It may take a while for you to tweak it to perfection, but you’ll be excited when you hear that perfect bass boost you want.
Once you tune your car amp for mids and highs, and low frequencies, you can go back to tinkering with the gain. Turn on a song again, and then set the volume to about 80 percent. Next, turn the gain up until you start to hear distortion. Pull back on the gain once you hear the slightest bit of distortion.
How to check that my settings are correct
You’ll probably want to fine-tune everything once you’re done fiddling with all the settings. You can check your work by turning the stereo all the way down to zero. The next thing you want to do is turn your volume all the way up to 80 percent maximum volume, or until you hear any distortion.
You’ve done an excellent job if you can get the volume up to 80 percent without hearing any distortion. You can pat yourself on the back and stop tinkering with your sound system immediately.
Don’t fret if you hear distortion, though. It just means you need to turn the gain down somewhere. Keep turning the gain down until the distortion goes away. That’s all there is to it. When you’re done, you can enjoy a nice, long drive in your car while you listen to your favorite music.
That’s all you need to know about adjusting your car amp to create a fantastic sound. Try these tips and see how they work for you. You’ll probably impress yourself with your amazing tweaking abilities.
You can also share any new tips or tricks you tried while trying to perfect your stereo’s sound. What were your experiences when setting your car amp for mids and highs? What have you seen other people do that might be helpful for people tuning their amps for the first time? Share your story.