(Topic ID: 176939)

Added new speakers to GNR- not impressed


By Haymaker

3 years ago



Topic Stats

  • 51 posts
  • 30 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 3 years ago by Blackjacker
  • Topic is favorited by 2 Pinsiders

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#1 3 years ago

After reading tons of posts about how aftermarket speakers really woke their games up I decided to give it a try myself. I was just going to do pinball pros or something but after more reading decided I could save some money putting together my own kit. I ordered these speakers: amazon.com link » and just got around to putting them in yesterday.

Well, I am not pleased with the sound. They don't sound any better than stock and I'd say if anything they sound worse because they seem to have a really scratchy sound to them. From what I read I was expecting a night and day difference, but man, it's certainly not.

Am I missing something? Did I do something wrong? Do these speakers just suck? I'm about ready to put the original speakers back in. I was so excited to have this GNR rock my socks off

#2 3 years ago

New speakers will not affect the quality of the original sounds since they have undergone sound compression--you can't really "undo" that.

You might want to look into the Pinsound board if you want better sound quality with higher fidelity sounds: https://www.pinsound.org/pinballs/data-east-r3/guns-n-roses/

#3 3 years ago

Or just add a pws10

#4 3 years ago

upgrading speakers on pinball machines is quite often a waste of time. As long as the stock speakers are in good shape they will usually do the job.

If you really want to upgrade it you have to go all the way and I can't really be bothered with that. But most of the drop-in "upgrades" (is pinball pro still in business?) don't really accomplish much.

My Robocop already sounds amazing so why mess with it!

#5 3 years ago

I tried a Pinball Pro setup on a T2. Horrible.

#6 3 years ago

Lol what the heck? I see all these guys ranting and raving about how great speaker upgrades are and now everyone here says they suck! Pinsound board is something I'd like to get because I'm aware the stock "source" audio is not very high quality, but it won't be for a while until I pony up the cash. Seriously though I was at least hoping for some improvement. I'm going to pull it back apart again tonight and make sure I don't have some clearance issues or something. I did just pick up a powered sub today that I'll be putting on too and I'll keep my fingers crossed that that'll liven up the sound

#7 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Lol what the heck? I see all these guys ranting and raving about how great speaker upgrades are and now everyone here says they suck!

Don't blame others for you trying to turn your game into something it isn't. You've got mod fever, baby, and the only cure is spending a bunch of money for very little benefit.

At the end of the day it's still just a commercial pinball machine. Most of us are happy with that.

#8 3 years ago

I don't think they suck but I like the DIY approach.

For the most part, you need to do more than just throw speakers at a pin in order to improve it's sound quality. If you want a DIY solution, you can also learn a lot in the process.

First problem I see with your speakers is that you installed two way speakers where woofers once were. Putting a two way where a woofer was is going to sound like ass.

My advice it to use a woofer where a woofer was and use a mid range where a mid range was, ect.

If you want to just throw anything into a game, at least get a cheap ass $30 amp that you can plug in to the service outlet on your game, add a small surge protector with a switch, then take the sound source from the game, run it into the amp, and then run your new speaker(s) from that amp. Then it will sound a lot better than just throwing two ways in place of the original $5 woofers that Data East/Stern used!

I have used this small beauty no less than 3 times and it is the best $ you can spend for what you need to get from factory 20 year old pinball sounds:

http://www.parts-express.com/lepai-lp-2020a-tripath-class-t-hi-fi-audio-mini-amplifier-with-power-supply--310-300?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=pla

It's not just about the speakers!

Once you feel confident you have an amp and speakers that sound good, you could then fine tune the set up it with some homemade low pass and high pass filters using spare caps you have lying around...

You can improve the sound on ANY game but most people don't want to learn the lessons required to get it sounding amazing and just op for the packaged solutions that the companies mentioned above make. Those setups can work great but I have discovered that games with true stereo sound (like Data Easts) can be more difficult to get sounding great.

#9 3 years ago

Lol I swear I don't have mod fever, but hell I guess I felt like I was missing out on a cheap easy way for good sound. I was happy enough with the factory speakers so now I feel even more foolish. Just makes me wonder how companies like flipper fidelity and PP can even stay in buisiness if it's so difficult to improve the sound even a little bit. I've dabbled with car and home audio for years so I figured I would have no problem adding pinball to the list. Lesson learned, thanks for the info guys

#10 3 years ago

T2 has really bad sound no matter what you do. The best improvement is to add an external sub, but even then, it's not great compared to so many other games, even some that came out earlier, like Funhouse.

#11 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

After reading tons of posts about how aftermarket speakers really woke their games up I decided to give it a try myself. I was just going to do pinball pros or something but after more reading decided I could save some money putting together my own kit. I ordered these speakers: amazon.com link »
Well, I am not pleased with the sound. They don't sound any better than stock and I'd say if anything they sound worse because they seem to have a really scratchy sound to them. From what I read I was expecting a night and day difference, but man, it's certainly not.
Am I missing something? Did I do something wrong? Do these speakers just suck? I'm about ready to put the original speakers back in. I was so excited to have this GNR rock my socks off

Most people talking up their aftermarket speakers bought FF or Pinball Pro, which are designed specifically for pinball. You went the DIY route, which might be to blame. Also, I don't see that you swapped the woofer, which usually gives the most noticeable improvement. Lastly, the audio source quality on older pins isn't great. There's not much to improve.

Personally, I think you get more benefit from upgrading the speakers on modern pins. I put the FF kit with 10" woofer on my GOT and it sounds amazing.

Adding an external woofer isn't a bad way to go either. Those things kick.

#12 3 years ago
Quoted from rockrand:

Or just add a pws10

This is what I do, the additional bass makes a world of difference.
I unhooked my IJ and I couldn't even play it!

#13 3 years ago

If it makes you feel any better, as a diehard GNR fan, I always found the sound quality on the GNR machine to be less than ideal - Welcome To The Jungle was obviously re-recorded/edited, and then compressed down to fit on the chips and whatnot I'm sure. Might be unavoidable. Of course if it sounds WORSE than stock, then you're dealing with other issues of course.

#14 3 years ago

Man the Cincy guys really know their stuff. Somewhere there's a thread by NPO or Metallic going through this topic in detail. My question is do you run both speakers and sub off of one 20 watt amp, or amp each speaker ? I have a nice 300 watt sub running on MET, but the sound still isn't where I want it to be.
Good thread Haymaker.

#15 3 years ago

Audio guys have a saying - crap in, crap out. If the source is crap (bad recording quality, etc), all you're doing is amplifying a crappy source, thereby making it sound crappy louder. If you upgrade your speakers, all you're doing is making it sound crappy louder more efficient.

#16 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

Man the Cincy guys really know their stuff. Somewhere there's a thread by NPO or Metallic going through this topic in detail. My question is do you run both speakers and sub off of one 20 watt amp, or amp each speaker ? I have a nice 300 watt sub running on MET, but the sound still isn't where I want it to be.
Good thread Haymaker.

I believe this is what you are are looking for: https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/addition-of-boss-amplifiers-to-stern-machines

I did it to my Metallica and it sounds pretty damn good. I would imagine the process would be pretty similar for the Data Easts since they are the predecessor to Stern. tommyp mentioned "crap in crap out" might unfortunately be the case though. The only good thing I've heard to do on GNR sound is add the pinshound board. At this point I'm too cheap to do it on my game, but would like to one day.

#17 3 years ago

I've got an external sub that I got off Craigslist for free under my GnR, and it sounds miles ahead of how it used to sound. I had considered some aftermarket speakers for the backbox, but after having them on my TZ, and thinking they added little if nothing compared to an external, I will stick to subs from Craigslist. (Seriously check into it. My last two were 25 dollars each!)

#18 3 years ago

Pinball Pro sub-woofer does make a big difference on Data East machines, Ive got one in my GNR - sounds great.

But yeah, you wont get much benefit with the backbox speakers unless you go with a PinSound board

#19 3 years ago

I put FF speakers in several pins. The game it made the most difference in was CFTBL--night and day. TFTC didn't improve much, but a powered sub made a difference--add that and junk those 2-way speakers.

#20 3 years ago

Two specs on those speakers that stand out as poor to me - frequency response only goes down to 100Hz and the sensitivity is really poor at only 85

Frequency Response (Hz): 100Hz - 20kHz
Sensitivity (dB @ 1W/1M): 85

Edit: Cerwin Vega has some pretty good specs on speakers -

ebay.com link » Cerwin Vega H440 Cerwin Vega Hed Mobile Series 4 2 Way Coaxial 400w Max Speaker

#21 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Lol what the heck? I see all these guys ranting and raving about how great speaker upgrades are and now everyone here says they suck! Pinsound board is something I'd like to get because I'm aware the stock "source" audio is not very high quality, but it won't be for a while until I pony up the cash. Seriously though I was at least hoping for some improvement. I'm going to pull it back apart again tonight and make sure I don't have some clearance issues or something. I did just pick up a powered sub today that I'll be putting on too and I'll keep my fingers crossed that that'll liven up the sound

Data east source was in stereo but is very low bitrate with very weak amps driving them. The fosgate speakers are not a good choice here. They're intended to be driven with some power. Only 85db efficiency is bad. Plus the audio compression used will make the treble sound hissy. Adding coax speakers will add ability to reproduce treble that the old speakers could not play. And the treble is what's weak in super low bitrate audio. In short, this was a terrible purchase choice for this game. Even if swapping backbox on a game with higher bitrate like Metallica or acdc, those fosgate speakers are still a bad choice for low power pinball amps.

Instead you needed a decent 8" upgrade and a crossover. That (done right) would bring the game alive. Changing speakers will bring the game alive. But you can't just blindly do it if you want decent results.

#22 3 years ago

I put a Pinsound board + Flipper Fidelity backbox and sub speaker upgrade, wired in 2.1 stereo on my TZ.

HUGE difference.

Problem is the original sound files are recorded in such crap format, better speakers will only enhance the poor quality sound- kind of like buying a 75" 4K TV just to play re-runs of Leave it to Beaver on VHS tape- it won't look any better.

A Pinsound board is worth every dollar IMO.

#23 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

I did just pick up a powered sub today

Let us know how that turns out for you, that to me is the first and foremost priority when upgrading the sound system on a pinball machine. You can't really power or amplify the backbox speakers with ease like you can dropping in a powered sub. Some powered subs have an output as well, I'm assuming to drive other speakers but I haven't yet tried splicing that into my backbox ones.

#24 3 years ago

Pinrob's got it right you have to research and choose accordingly. You want high effcient speakers like 91db+ you also need to pair that w/ good frequency response... those $12 kraco's ain't gonna do it

#25 3 years ago

So are you guys saying my MET would sound a little less squeezed/compressed and generally better with a Pinsound board ? Plus speaker upgrade, which of course I will try before buying a $300 board. Just complacent.

#26 3 years ago

Markmon will go into a huge rant about why this may be bad, but these look better

amazon.com link »

#28 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

So are you guys saying my MET would sound a little less squeezed/compressed and generally better with a Pinsound board ?

It would probably sound better with a different band.

#29 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

So are you guys saying my MET would sound a little less squeezed/compressed and generally better with a Pinsound board ? Plus speaker upgrade, which of course I will try before buying a $300 board. Just complacent.

Last I checked, Stern isn't supported yet.

#30 3 years ago
Quoted from o-din:

It would probably sound better with a different band.

Lol.
I made you a mixtape for Christmas bruh...90 minutes of the Seek and Destroy riff. Did ya get it ? Cause I haven't heard any grandiose thank yous yet.

#31 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

90 minutes of the Seek and Destroy riff. Did ya get it ?

Yeah man. I woke up in the chair at 5 AM and it was still going...

#32 3 years ago

Great info here. I might try another set of speakers in the future. I thought the fosgates would be pretty decent because I heard all these tales of guys using Pyle and other low end speakers with good results. Since the source audio is low quality a high end speaker wasn't needed. I got the fosgates because they are at least a somewhat reputable brand and I liked how they were coax but the tweeter didn't stick way out so I knew I wouldn't have clearance issues. Unfortunately the external sub I bought probably won't work because it uses an RCA jack vs regular speaker wire. I'm sure I could make it work but I figured I've cobbled enough together for now.

I can see some areas now where I've made mistakes and I might pursue going further soon and any other info is always appreciated!

#33 3 years ago

You can make the RCA jack work, I found a youtube video that explained how to do it when I had the same situation.

#34 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Great info here. I might try another set of speakers in the future. I thought the fosgates would be pretty decent because I heard all these tales of guys using Pyle and other low end speakers with good results. Since the source audio is low quality a high end speaker wasn't needed. I got the fosgates because they are at least a somewhat reputable brand and I liked how they were coax but the tweeter didn't stick way out so I knew I wouldn't have clearance issues. Unfortunately the external sub I bought probably won't work because it uses an RCA jack vs regular speaker wire. I'm sure I could make it work but I figured I've cobbled enough together for now.
I can see some areas now where I've made mistakes and I might pursue going further soon and any other info is always appreciated!

Ya mistake #1 is relying on brand because you are familiar with them. All about the speaker specs in this case

#35 3 years ago

Rivelli what bb speakers do you recommend for newer Sterns, if I may ask ? That Polk looked pretty sweet. A couple 20 watt amps, 2 Polks and a 300 watt sub and I'm not gonna blow up the fusebox ? Earbox yes. Fusebox no.

#36 3 years ago
Quoted from o-din:

Yeah man. I woke up in the chair at 5 AM and it was still going...

See that's that high dollar auto reverse shit you got. Don't even have to touch a button, that tape will never stop. From here to eternity.

#37 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

Rivelli what bb speakers do you recommend for newer Sterns, if I may ask ? That Polk looked pretty sweet. A couple 20 watt amps, 2 Polks and a 300 watt sub and I'm not gonna blow up the fusebox ? Earbox yes. Fusebox no.

Oh who knows man. Markmon would know way better than I. I just pretend to know what I'm talking about. He happens to know what he's talking about lol

#38 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Lol what the heck? I see all these guys ranting and raving about how great speaker upgrades are and now everyone here says they suck! Pinsound board is something I'd like to get because I'm aware the stock "source" audio is not very high quality, but it won't be for a while until I pony up the cash. Seriously though I was at least hoping for some improvement. I'm going to pull it back apart again tonight and make sure I don't have some clearance issues or something. I did just pick up a powered sub today that I'll be putting on too and I'll keep my fingers crossed that that'll liven up the sound

Those were people justifying their purchase and added cost when selling the game.

#39 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Lol what the heck? I see all these guys ranting and raving about how great speaker upgrades are and now everyone here says they suck! Pinsound board is something I'd like to get because I'm aware the stock "source" audio is not very high quality, but it won't be for a while until I pony up the cash. Seriously though I was at least hoping for some improvement. I'm going to pull it back apart again tonight and make sure I don't have some clearance issues or something. I did just pick up a powered sub today that I'll be putting on too and I'll keep my fingers crossed that that'll liven up the sound

Not me ive always stated oem is the same or better than the upgraded ones. Only thing u need is a polk psw10 and oem speakers and its perfect for a pinball machine.....

#40 3 years ago
Quoted from jrivelli:

Ya mistake #1 is relying on brand because you are familiar with them. All about the speaker specs in this case

You're absolutely right, however I was paying attention to the specs, maybe just not realizing how important things like freq response and sensitivity were. Another thing I was thinking about was how I don't trust the advertised specs on the lower end speaker brands I see a lot of other guys using. Maybe that's where the aftermarket pin speaker companies have it figured out. They find found a budget speaker setup with the proper specs and rebrand them as their own.

Maybe I'm just trying to find the silver lining here but I feel like this thread has some of the most in depth pin speaker talk I've seen. Most of the threads/sites I read didn't get this technical. I like it!

#41 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

Most of the threads/sites I read didn't get this technical. I like it!

Welcome to 90% of Pinside. It's easy to bitch and spout random opinions. It's tough to know your shit and give sound advice with knowledge and experience behind it.

#42 3 years ago

Pinsound board and new speakers in the backbox and a 10" woofer instead of the flimsy standard one, and you will never look back...best upgrade for my GnR ever (no shacker needed)

#43 3 years ago

I've been lusting after a pinsound board since before I even got a GNR. Sadly I also need LEDs and a color DMD so it's gonna be a minute while I save my pennies! I guess I'm just building a foundation for when I do get the pinsound lol

#44 3 years ago

You really need a pinsound board. Crap in crap out is true. FF and pinball Pro speakers are kinda a waste if the source is not the best quality. Get pinsound then FF. Much better

#45 3 years ago
Quoted from Haymaker:

I've been lusting after a pinsound board since before I even got a GNR. Sadly I also need LEDs and a color DMD so it's gonna be a minute while I save my pennies! I guess I'm just building a foundation for when I do get the pinsound lol

I got the leds for you!

Anyways, I don't think you need a pinsound board in GNR. It's probably better, but after playing markmon's GNR with his speaker and in cabinet sub upgrades it sounds incredible and has a good rumble to it.

#46 3 years ago

What is the best pinsound mix for GNR do you guys reckon? I just put Julienv1.40 in, and i reckon its good, however maybe i'm used to some more of the original sound, and it seemed a fair bit different. Happy if anyone lets me know of any other version around apart from the 3 on pinsound forums.

#47 3 years ago
Quoted from jrivelli:

Anyways, I don't think you need a pinsound board in GNR.

Not true, unless one's ears don't work. (I mean, sure, it doesn't affect gameplay, so yeah you don't "need" one...)

As someone mentioned earlier: garbage in, garbage out. I'm pretty sure the stock sounds in GNR were encoded with a potato. Adding a sub or upgrading speakers but piping the same low-res source through the system doesn't make much sense.

I replaced my GNR stock speakers first simply because the PinSound board wasn't available yet. Gave it more definition, sure, but also drove home even more clearly how shit the encoding on the source recordings is. Added a PinSound and a Polk sub, made my own mix for PinSound, and it's a completely different experience.

#48 3 years ago

A pin sound board definitely improves the sound quality a ton. But on gnr, stock backbox with a cabinet sub isn't a bad way to go. Once you add some bass to the sound, it does come alive a bit.

For stern backbox you want something efficient but not total garbage perhaps some clarion. Those are pretty efficient coax. For spacers, our speaker light kits also act as coax spacers

#49 3 years ago
Quoted from Gryszzz:

See that's that high dollar auto reverse shit you got. Don't even have to touch a button, that tape will never stop. From here to eternity.

Even throwing an empty beer bottle at it wouldn't make it stop.

#50 3 years ago
Quoted from Blackjacker:

Not true, unless one's ears don't work. (I mean, sure, it doesn't affect gameplay, so yeah you don't "need" one...)
As someone mentioned earlier: garbage in, garbage out. I'm pretty sure the stock sounds in GNR were encoded with a potato. Adding a sub or upgrading speakers but piping the same low-res source through the system doesn't make much sense.
I replaced my GNR stock speakers first simply because the PinSound board wasn't available yet. Gave it more definition, sure, but also drove home even more clearly how shit the encoding on the source recordings is. Added a PinSound and a Polk sub, made my own mix for PinSound, and it's a completely different experience.

Not sure how my opinion of the sound can be "not true" but anyways. You simply didn't add a pinsound board, you redid all the audio which others may not be able to do above a simple board swap.

So I guess to restate...."in my opinion, GNR can sound fantastic without the pinsound board"

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