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Old 06-10-2017, 06:15 PM   #1
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distorted ceiling speakers

a year or so ago installed two alpine speakers in ceiling to replace stock. they worked fine until recently when they have become distorted. when removed from ceiling there was a fair amount of white styrofoam ceiling insulation deposited in the speakers. could this be the problem?
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Old 06-10-2017, 06:22 PM   #2
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Distorted speakers is a personal definition.

You mention the excess styrofoam. Could it be the styrofoam was bouncing on the speakers causing your distortion? Try them before installing again to see if there's distortion. Then reinstall and try again.
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Old 06-10-2017, 06:46 PM   #3
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thx kenand terry
its cud well be the styrofoam is bouncing off the speakers. my problem is that there was styrofoam incursion in and on the speaker. little tiny pieces. my question is an attempt to determine if such foreign matter is present, wud this effect the performance of the speaker. my next step will be to take the speakers down, vacuum the particles off and then place some kind of baffle between speaker and insulation. before i go to this trouble wud like someone who is familiar with speaker technology to give an opinion. these are expensive alpine speakers so am very disappointed.
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Old 06-10-2017, 07:02 PM   #4
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Many many makes and models of RV's have styrofoam in the ceiling as part of assembly. It may be in larger solid pieces and is trimmed and cut as needed when certain items are installed in the ceiling. It's all part of creating insulation for the living quarters.

Even in our rig after 7 years, I still find particles falling from time to time.
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Old 06-10-2017, 07:09 PM   #5
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Parts Express, and MCM Electronics, among others, can sell you foam baskets that go behind the speakers and protect from falling / bouncing crud.
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Old 06-10-2017, 07:50 PM   #6
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Foam pieces bouncing on the speaker cone will cause distortion.
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Old 06-10-2017, 07:57 PM   #7
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distorted speakers

thx guys for all the helpful replies. will look into that speaker basket. do u think if i carefully vacuum the speakers it will remove most of the particles.
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Old 06-10-2017, 08:14 PM   #8
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Use a long-bristle brush on a hose-type vacuum and you will do fine. The speakers are probably connected with push-on terminals, so you could also carefully remove them and then use a clean, dry paintbrush or make-up brush. (The little fibre board that they are attached to the speaker from upon, is likely fragile - brittle from age, plus the nature of speaker terminals.) If the speakers have an obvious "foam" outer edge, just be gentle. These usually have a life of ten-plus years if not exposed to direct sun. They are repairable / replaceable if damaged.
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Old 06-10-2017, 10:27 PM   #9
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distorted speakers

thx again jeff. i replied via ur pvt email and got a message from fr forums saying thats a nono. what i replied is i will acquired a couple of speaker baskets used to protect speakers from insullation in ceilings. then i will follow ur very good suggestions regarding cleaning.
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Old 06-10-2017, 10:45 PM   #10
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Hopefully getting the foreign objects off the speaker helps if not check the impedance of the speaker it should match impedance of the amplifier if not that could be the problem.
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Old 06-11-2017, 04:05 PM   #11
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distorted speakers

roger that, will chek impedance. hope it is just the styro tho
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Old 06-14-2017, 10:21 AM   #12
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"Damn," should have mentioned this sooner ...

a slick "quick fix" is to wrap the entire speaker in a used pantyhose - the material is acoustically transparent, and will keep dust and particles away from the speaker.
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Old 06-14-2017, 02:18 PM   #13
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distorted speakers

hi fly vx and others giving me help on this vexing problem. cleaned both speakers and put bathing caps over speakers to protect from styrolfoam. put them back together only to discover one speaker still distorted. think perhaps it is faulty, or permanently damaged by foam incursion as mentioned by one. we are on road now but once back home will return speaker in the hope of getting a replacement.
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Old 06-14-2017, 02:45 PM   #14
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Distortion is caused by under powering the speaker. The voice coil looses control.
When you upgraded to the alpine speaker, they have a larger voice coil than the stock speaker. But were still being driven by the low wattage head unit.

Think 4 banger in a civic. Motor matches car. Now, you took the 4 banger out of the civic and put it in a dually.
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Old 06-15-2017, 09:47 PM   #15
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distorted speakers

hi kenny kustom

thx for info. jensen amp is plenty wattage for alpine speakers. after cleaning, i find one is the distortion culprit. the other speaker boom out with authority. i think the one distorting speaker may be faulty. i am hoping if i take it back to my hi fi guy, he will test it and hopefully replace it.
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Old 06-15-2017, 11:02 PM   #16
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What's the specs on the Jensen and the alpine?
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Old 06-15-2017, 11:29 PM   #17
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From the Jensen manual, it puts out about 8 watts. Click image for larger version

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