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Discussion Starter #1
So I noticed a problem when I was sitting in rear seats of my Rav4 2013 that have stock speakers. I don't know how to explain it, but it sounds like the music is only coming out from the front of the car but if I'm in the driver seat it sounds fine.

If i were to give an example "Sorry if its bad"
If I'm sitting in the front, the position of the sound feels like I'm using headphones.
If I'm sitting in the back, the position of the music sounds like its coming from 2 speakers in front of the car, and its kinda boring....

I've already tried playing with the sound settings, and it didn't work. So i was thinking about upgrading my speakers but I'm not too sure if that would work.
I'm also wondering if anybody has noticed this. It could just be a me problem but idk. If anybody could enlighten me, that would awesome! Thank U!
 

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try setting your rear speakers to 100% and front 0%. does sound come out? if not then something is wrong with the rear speakers.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank u for replying! i though nobody was going to D: , and I have tried what you have said and my rear speakers are working, BUT they sounds a lot softer than the ones in the front. Assuming that is not how its suppose to be. Do you know what could be done to fix this ? Thank you again
 

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I noticed the same thing with my GF's car. She just got the 2016 with JBL updated speakers.

Driving the car it sounds fine, Bass is good. Then I sat in the back with the dogs and she drove. Sounds like it's only coming from the front.

I set the speakers for only rear and they work, but very low.
 

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I just got the 2016 RAV4 hybrid limited with the upgraded JBL speakers. I feel that as is when driving, the sound feels like it is only coming from the front. I have played around a little bit and for the sound to 'improve' for me, I had to adjust the output so that the sound preference graphic shows the sound coming 1-2 spots from the *back* and slightly to the *right* of middle.

I find it annoying that you need to make changes to each audio source as each one is independent. Right now I'm not overly impressed with the sound quality but I am still playing around with it.

Anyone else have additional tips to improve the sound?
 

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Trihard,

Have you found any improvements? I just got my 2016 RAV4 SE with the JBL 11 speaker sound system. I know you have to adjust the settings for each source, but still haven't found the right settings as of yet. I am wondering if there is a firmware upgrade to make the sound out of the radio better.
 

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As far as I know, there is no firmware upgrade available (yet). I haven't further adjusted my settings from what I stated earlier. There are other threads on people who are changing out their head unit as they are really unhappy with the overall system. I am not at that point, but it definitely isn't the best. The car, on the other hand, is awesome, so I can live with it.
 

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Trihard,

Have you found any improvements? I just got my 2016 RAV4 SE with the JBL 11 speaker sound system. I know you have to adjust the settings for each source, but still haven't found the right settings as of yet. I am wondering if there is a firmware upgrade to make the sound out of the radio better.
I'm in the sound engineering field by trade and yes, the JBL "upgrade" is a bit of a disappointment. The settings I use is as follows below. Yes, these settings will result in the volume scale being up nearer to the top for normal listening volume, but the advantage is (at least to my ear) much fuller/ balanced sound, and more of a gradual volume adjustment across the scale.
Mine is a 2016.

Left/Right Front/Back adjustment: centered left to right and BACK 3 clicks (or, if you go all the way back to where only the rear doors are playing, click forward 2 clicks)
Bass: all the way up, +10
Mid: -3
Treble: -2
And, in the settings app under audio, check "sound levelizer" so it's ON.
(In case anyone notices compared to my post a few weeks back, Yes, I've changed my mind on the levelizer. After weeks of experimenting it seems to help, although slight, overall)
Also, remember to set this profile for all the sources as they are separate.

Try these out for a couple days, these settings make even the FM band passable to my ear.

I hope this helps.
 
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Try these out for a couple days, these settings make even the FM band passable to my ear.

I hope this helps.
Wow. That DOES help, actually.

One point of confusion on my part: On my 2016 limited w/ JBL (hybrid, but should be the same HU), I have 14 "clicks" from a far forward fade to the far rear fade. "Center" is dead in the middle of that (so there's 7 up and 7 down.) Your description makes it sound like there are only 5 points between center and far rear.

In other words, 3 "back" from center is NOT the same as 2 "forward" from the far rear... so I'm unsure where to match your setting. (I went 3 back from center and it sounds good, but I prefer the soundstage to be slightly in "front" of me when I drive.)
 

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Wow. That DOES help, actually.

One point of confusion on my part: On my 2016 limited w/ JBL (hybrid, but should be the same HU), I have 14 "clicks" from a far forward fade to the far rear fade. "Center" is dead in the middle of that (so there's 7 up and 7 down.) Your description makes it sound like there are only 5 points between center and far rear.

In other words, 3 "back" from center is NOT the same as 2 "forward" from the far rear... so I'm unsure where to match your setting. (I went 3 back from center and it sounds good, but I prefer the soundstage to be slightly in "front" of me when I drive.)
My mistake, I was trying to remember the clicks while not in the car looking at it. You are right, there are 7 total clicks either way. I am currently using 4 back from center (or 3 forward from all the way back)
And as you said, a click either way to suit your taste :thumbs_up:
 

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Just to clarify, this is for the JBL system, I've never heard the "lower" systems... But from what this forum indicates the lower systems sound better then the JBL upgrade...
Go figure.
Personally I think they tried to over-engineer the sound system, or the over engineering (processing) was a result of a mis-match between JBL amp/speakers and whoever built the head unit. As if they had no communication as to what each other was building.
 

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Just to clarify, this is for the JBL system, I've never heard the "lower" systems... But from what this forum indicates the lower systems sound better then the JBL upgrade...
This seems to be a common problem with "upgraded" audio systems. In my Mazda CX-5 with the "upgraded" Bose sound system, it was significantly worse than the base sound. (It was worse than even Bose normally is.)

Has anyone managed to isolate the JBL system amp to see if there are any tunables on it? (Are the JBL speakers standard impedance speakers? If so, just replacing the amp - or just replacing the speakers - might make a significant difference.)
 

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2017 Rav4 Platinum with JBL Premium system here.

So, I've tried several different settings. So far the best inputs are from USB and Line In. I seem to have a little bit more control over the sound there. ASL didn't make much of a difference, but the first time I've heard my subwoofer "quake" was with it turned off. I'm keeping it off for now.

It seems the sub is attached exclusively to the front speakers, which is usual as you'd normally have limited range speakers in the front - which is not Rav4's case. The back speakers are full range hardware, although, they seem artificially (software) reduced to mid-ranges only (through the amp or through the OEM unit?). Barely no treble or bass there. If you push the balance 100% back, the sub is turned off (not even AC current goes there) and the sound seems mono.

A ended up configuring it like this:
- Balance: dead center
- Bass: +10
- Mid: -8
- Treble: -3
- ASL: Off

I'm still searching for a good lossless audio file to really test this system.

Meanwhile, has anyone ever get to the amp to see if there is configuration available there? Btw, where is the amp?

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Since I saw an update to this post today, I just wanted to update my current situation of my sound system problem. Reading prev post I can agree that pushing the sound back "for me" 3-4 clicks was the best way to almost equalize the sound but this improvement only helped people sitting in the front cabin in my opinion.

I have now since 2-3 months ago upgrade my sound system replacing all my speakers and adding amps.
This is my current setup:
Deck: Kenwood Excelon DDX794 DVD Receiver
Fronts: Focal Performance PS 165V Expert Series 6-3/4" component speaker system
Rears: JL Audio C2-650X
Sub: Rockford Fosgate P3D4-10
Speaker Amp: Rockford Fosgate TM400X4AD Punch Marine Amp, 400 Watt 4 Channel
Sub Amp: Rockford Fosgate R500X1D

Setup was done by me and a friend.

Just gotta say I am a novice when it comes to speaker audio and audio it self. I have no idea what amazing sound quality is and what you are trying to look for when listening, so what I am about to write is just how I felt about changes that I heard with my own ears.

After making the change I found that the stock tweeters for the rav4 were amazing for stock tweets, I've read a lot of people saying that the sound is bad but I really never thought the tweeters in the rav4 were bad "I did have the treble setting up about 5-7 clicks". Of course once I installed my new fronts there was definitely more detail and more thump into my music but from the vocals stand point it never really changed, honestly it can be better and worse at times.

Now with the original problem I stated in this thred was the rear speakers being soft. After changing out the speakers and adding dedicated amps to it. It was a huge improvement!!! At lower volumes it still had the same problem, this is probably due to the placement of the speakers but at more decent volumes you can really hear a more equal "I would assume" sound stage for the front and rear passenger seats I can confidently say it does not sound like its only coming from the front any more. I also want to assume that adding tweeters into the rear doors could also help improve that sound stage too.

Deck is nice, pretty much you are able to fine tune the sound a lot more than a OEM Deck can. You will also be losing reverse camera and some other OEM Features but these can be saved with a IData link Maestro. I have it but the model I received could not save my reverse camera "even though its advertised and confirmed by the company that it could"

The subwoofer really does add the missing element in my music. It can get overwhelming at times so I do turn it off but once you listen to music with a sub and then with out it, you can really tell its filling in a gap.
 

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Thanks everyone for the suggestions. My 2017 Limited (JBL Premium sound) sounds great. Started with PghRav4's settings (His are a good place to start) and made minor adjustments with the different sources. MP3's from different albums in iTunes, with the same settings, always sound different as does MP3's played from Bluetooth, USB, and direct connect.

Kenk
 

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2017 Rav4 Platinum with JBL Premium system here.

- Balance: dead center
- Bass: +10
- Mid: -8
- Treble: -3
- ASL: Off
Update here:
While I was playing around with ASL, I didn't really notice much difference between ON and OFF. However, since having it OFF for some time, I decided to turn it ON and, suddenly, there was major differences between ON and OFF settings.

My assumption is the following: after a software upgrade, this option gets ticked as ON by default, but without actually enabling the functionality. Since I turned it OFF and turned the car off as well like this, when the radio "rebooted" after I started the car in the following day, the functionality was both unchecked and OFF, which means, when I checked it ON, it activated for real.

With that said, this is my new configuration:
- Balance: dead center (only because pushing it back a little removes gain from the sub)
- Bass: +10
- Mid: -10
- Treble: +1
- ASL: ON

So far, so good. Not optimal yet, but at least I can hear the sub quaking and the voice from the deck speakers doesn't "erase" the rest of the ranges.
 

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After making the change I found that the stock tweeters for the rav4 were amazing for stock tweets, I've read a lot of people saying that the sound is bad but I really never thought the tweeters in the rav4 were bad "I did have the treble setting up about 5-7 clicks".

...

Now with the original problem I stated in this thred was the rear speakers being soft... this is probably due to the placement of the speakers...
After my finding with the ASL ON/OFF situation, I also think the tweeters are really good in this car. The issue really remains with the back speakers. I don't think hardware-wise they are that bad, but I do believe the configuration for them is terrible. About the position, it makes sense. If I compare to my Fusion, they are in the same position, but Sync 3 allows me to better configure gain and there is no empty space under the seats (different from the Rav4). If the speakers were slightly tilted upwards, it would cause a very good gain already.

Another change I'd do (to the stock configuration) would be to hook the sub on the back speakers. I believe this would both bring more impedance to the channel as well as would allow better distribution of the sound.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
After my finding with the ASL ON/OFF situation, I also think the tweeters are really good in this car. The issue really remains with the back speakers. I don't think hardware-wise they are that bad, but I do believe the configuration for them is terrible. About the position, it makes sense. If I compare to my Fusion, they are in the same position, but Sync 3 allows me to better configure gain and there is no empty space under the seats (different from the Rav4). If the speakers were slightly tilted upwards, it would cause a very good gain already.

Another change I'd do (to the stock configuration) would be to hook the sub on the back speakers. I believe this would both bring more impedance to the channel as well as would allow better distribution of the sound.
I'm glad that another person also agrees with me about the tweeters being really good! Before changing out my speakers my first project was to add a sub which I used a line out converter that came with my amplifier. I dont know if the impedance changed or if the sound changed for the rear but it did add a lot of base to my music. Honestly its really weird, my bass got a lot weaker after changing out the line out converter and switching it for RCA's since I had a new deck that supported that.

Also if anybody has read my previous post which was yesterday about the rear speakers still lacking on lower volumes after changing it out, I would to take back what I said. At lower volumes it still sounds really good! The "front only sound" problem barely exist. So changing out the rears and adding a dedicated amp will definitely fix the problem!
 
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