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Discussion Starter #1
Subaru audio systems have been pretty lack luster and I know we shouldn't expect much from it but I'm hoping that take a look at it.

Having sat in a buddies BRZ even with the upgraded Pioneer audio, it was pretty weak. Yeah the screen was nice but that was essentially it. The speakers provided little to no bass at all and the tweeters were a bit too overpowering for the mids.

Are you anticipating a good audio system or do you just not really care ?
 

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Honestly, how a car performs and feels is more important to me than the audio system. So long as it sounds halfway decent, it doesn't really matter to me, unless the factory system sounds like it's vibrating at certain frequencies. I hate that sound and will change it out for something aftermarket if needed.
 

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Performance of a vehicle is always ultimately the most important. But there are many other things to consider when purchasing a vehicle that all add up to become an overall decision so this is something to consider at least in my opinion but I see where you're coming from.

OEM audio vibrations are a big pet peeve of mine though. Having plastics start vibrating in the car when bass hits really erks me and a lot of times, dealers will just fix it trying to use some sort of 3m adhesive rubber thing which is annoying as heck.
 

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I am hoping it will be similar to the Forester Harman Kardon premium package, it actually sounds decent (After adjusting the EQ) and the deck isn't bad. I also don't think it really needs a dedicated subwoofer either as there is enough bass or maybe I am just getting too old haha.

The base audio though is terrible in the Forester/WRX...haven't heard it in the BRZ though so I am sure it is the same. I feel like the premium is just average/right, it didn't always use to be like that.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think all of their base audio systems are absolutely terrible haha. You need the premium audio systems to give you a "decent" sound quality but still short of good if you get what I mean.

Hopefully we can get away with simple speaker replacement opposed to complete overhaul.
 

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Always been a fan of Pioneer audio, so post-delivery I will be looking into brands like that for my own personal setup. Won`t be anything special, just off-the-shelf speakers from my local Best Buy or independent audio shop.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Pioneer speakers are nice, but I think they're a little over-rated and over-hyped which shows in their prices compared to other brands like clarion and cerwin-vega. If you want some real good quality, step it up to Focals, but they can get really darn pricey.
 

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I spoke with a dealer today regarding an audio upgrade on a Premium model Ascent that I want to order. You can’t add the Harmon Kardon audio without going up to Option package that also includes power moonroof, but three is an option to add a Rockford Fosgate upgrade for $549 through the dealership as an add on. I’m probably going this route.
http://www.rockfordfosgate.com/products/system/mobile/2019-current-ascent/
 

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I spoke with a dealer today regarding an audio upgrade on a Premium model Ascent that I want to order. You can’t add the Harmon Kardon audio without going up to Option package that also includes power moonroof, but three is an option to add a Rockford Fosgate upgrade for $549 through the dealership as an add on. I’m probably going this route.
http://www.rockfordfosgate.com/products/system/mobile/2019-current-ascent/
Wow that is awesome as I have a Rockford Fosgate in my Xterra and it is one of the best systems I have heard. I'm getting the Touring with the Harmon but if I wasn't this would be the sound system I would get.


Also I used to not care about the sound until I had my Xterra as I never realized how good a car stereo can sound. Now if it is like the '02 WRX I had then be worried I blew out 2 speakers that were replaced under warranty and I was listening to classical music when it happened.
 

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Be sure to do some research on the current models (Impreza / Crosstrek) that have a similar Rockford Fosgate upgrade option. On those models, it appears the upgrade is an amplifier and only 2 replacement speakers. It should be a worthy upgrade over the base factory system, but it likely won't come close to the 14 speaker Harman surround system.

H630SFL000 Rockford Fosgate Upgrade 2017 Impreza
 

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Be sure to do some research on the current models (Impreza / Crosstrek) that have a similar Rockford Fosgate upgrade option. On those models, it appears the upgrade is an amplifier and only 2 replacement speakers. It should be a worthy upgrade over the base factory system, but it likely won't come close to the 14 speaker Harman surround system.

H630SFL000 Rockford Fosgate Upgrade 2017 Impreza
I'd echo this - i have read mixed reviews on this 'upgrade'. It's no doubt better than stock but for the money you may be able to do better going with an outside installer.
 

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I checked with my sales rep, and they can have it factory-installed for like $415. I'm probably not going to do it, though. Already doing a fair number of accessories. If I wanted to improve the audio, I'd just do the HK -- if only they separated it out from the moonroof, or offered it without nav.
 

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HK Specs

Has anyone seen actual specs for the HK audio? I'm trying to compare it to the HK system I have now which is disappointing from a power perspective.
 

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Has anyone seen actual specs for the HK audio? I'm trying to compare it to the HK system I have now which is disappointing from a power perspective.
The "At A Glance" pdf linked on the Subaru Media Center release here Subaru U.S. Media Center lists the HK system as such:

SUBARU STARLINK Multimedia Navigation system with Harman Kardon Quantum Logic Surround Sound 792-watt equivalent amplifier and 14-speakers.

I have not seen anything published as far as driver sizes, including for the rear cargo area mounted subwoofer. Based on images, I expect the 14 speakers to include a separate mid-range / tweeter in each of the 6 outboard seating positions (12/14), a center channel in the front dash (13/14), and the rear subwoofer (14/14).

I hope we will see more official information soon. I enjoy the HK systems in my 2014 Forester and 2016 STI, with the STI sounding the better of the two due to a dedicated subwoofer.
 

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I have not seen anything published as far as driver sizes, including for the rear cargo area mounted subwoofer. Based on images, I expect the 14 speakers to include a separate mid-range / tweeter in each of the 6 outboard seating positions (12/14), a center channel in the front dash (13/14), and the rear subwoofer (14/14).

I hope we will see more official information soon. I enjoy the HK systems in my 2014 Forester and 2016 STI, with the STI sounding the better of the two due to a dedicated subwoofer.
I will post a picture of all 14 drivers (and their rough placement) soon. I have to dig it up.
 

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Now I am a little concerned I wasted money on this based on that Impreza link. I ordered the Rockford Fosgate upgrade. Might be better off just doing something myself after I own it. I will say that the HK system in my Outback is nothing to write home about. I have an old Rockford Fosgate Punch subwoofer/xtant amp and cheap Pioneer head unit with factory speakers in my truck that blows away the Outback stereo.

What is the policy or process on removing this from my order? I know I can call my salesman but does anyone know the timeline for making a change like this?
 

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What is the policy or process on removing this from my order? I know I can call my salesman but does anyone know the timeline for making a change like this?
someone mentioned in this forum that within the first 30 days after the order placed, but for only accessories and upgrades.
I don't know when you ordered and waiting for July or August delivery, but if I were you and not in a hurry I would order another one with premium HK add-on (if you were unable to modify your order).
 

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Now I am a little concerned I wasted money on this based on that Impreza link. I ordered the Rockford Fosgate upgrade. Might be better off just doing something myself after I own it. I will say that the HK system in my Outback is nothing to write home about. I have an old Rockford Fosgate Punch subwoofer/xtant amp and cheap Pioneer head unit with factory speakers in my truck that blows away the Outback stereo.

What is the policy or process on removing this from my order? I know I can call my salesman but does anyone know the timeline for making a change like this?

That is easy to remove through the dealer order system in Subarunet. But a lot of dealerships limit their Salesman's permissions. He should be able to go to Vehicle/Sales>Dealer Order System>"Click here to access the Subaru Dealer Order System" I just edited my own personal Ascent because I finally realized what the 3rd row sunshade was referring to >.< So I added it to my Limited.
 

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What kind of name is RF in the audio world? I’ve had the HK system in my last two Subaru’s - an 09 Legacy and a 11 Outback... so I am a little ignorant in that respect. Music is important to me, quality wise. I don’t want to go an aftermarket route later, so comparing the HK and RF would be useful if anyone had any insight between the two now that they’re starting to be available for test drive.

My wife’s daily is a 16 Honda Pilot EX-L and I hate the sound in that thing. No depth to the base, excessively tinny and treble despite changing the EQ.

Currently my front-runner trim is the Ascent Premium 8p, with the manual key and rear gate. But, I am passionate enough about the sound quality that I might be willing to upgrade to the RF or even consider the thousands more for the Limited 8p or even Touring for the HK system.

(Touring might be excluded depending on if 7p or 8p is better...)
 
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