A client from Midlothian recently contacted the team at Extreme Audio for help improving the sound quality of the stereo system on his 2019 Yamaha 242X E-Series wake boat. The boat came with a fairly elaborate Wet Sounds audio system that is controlled by the 12-inch Connext touchscreen display at the helm. Even though the system was loud enough, the client wanted it to sound clearer and more detailed. After inspecting the existing system design, we proposed a speaker and amplifier upgrade that would deliver what he wanted to ensure that he and his family would enjoy their time on the water.
Marine Audio System Amplifier and Processor
The stock stereo has a pair of Wet Sounds amplifiers mounted under the helm. A four-channel amp runs the wakeboard speaker enclosures and sound bar in the aluminum ski tower, while a six-channel amp powers a subwoofer and three sets of Wet Sounds speakers around the interior of the boat. The system is controlled by the touchscreen and a Fusion remote on the swim platform. While the tower zone volume can be adjusted on its own, the owner has to do it from the remote control. Also, the Wet Sounds amplifiers don’t have any user-adjustable controls, making it nearly impossible to repurpose the six-channel amp for the upgraded speakers.
We started the project by adding a Wet Sounds WS-420 SQ four-band parametric equalizer with multi-zone volume control under the steering wheel. This preamp equalizer makes it easy to adjust the volume of the tower speakers relative to the interior speakers. After some rewiring, we left the factory amp on the tower speakers and added a Wet Sounds HTX-1 to drive the subwoofers and a six-channel ARC Audio XDi1200.6 to deliver 150 watts to each of the new speakers we’d be installing. The factory radio built into the touchscreen at the helm continues to provide audio to the entire system, as well as functional information about the operation of the boat.
We added a Stinger marine-rated circuit breaker to protect the amplifiers and ran new power cables to ensure everything would function reliably. As always, the wiring is properly secured and protected for a clean and tidy look.
JL Audio Speaker Upgrade
As with any stereo, the performance and accuracy of the audio system depend primarily on the speakers you use. While the Wet Sounds speakers that came with the boat are quite good, they can’t keep up with the capabilities of the new JL Audio M6 marine speakers. We installed three sets of M6-650X-S-GMTI titanium-colored speakers in the factory locations around the boat to bolster the overall performance of the system. The interior speakers are on either side of the bow seating position and the rear bench seats. The third set of speakers are on either side of the swim platform.
We also installed a second Wet Sounds REVO-10FAS4 10-inch subwoofer on the left side of the boat to match the factory subwoofer located beside the captain’s seat. The extra subwoofer helps to provide more deep bass and makes it easier to deliver great bass anywhere onboard.
System Tuning and Project Delivery
With the amplifier and speaker upgrades installed, our team set to work adjusting the crossovers and level controls on the amplifiers and fine-tuning the equalizer adjustments on the Wet Sounds preamp to deliver clear and detailed sound from every position onboard. We used our real-time audio analyzer to ensure that the adjustments we made translated directly into a system that sounds natural and realistic at any volume level.
After two long days of work, we invited the client to return to Extreme Audio and hear the upgraded stereo on his Yamaha boat for the first time. He was absolutely thrilled with the results, and he knew his family would definitely enjoy the way it sounds. If you are interested in upgrading the sound system on your boat or motorcycle or in your car or truck, drop by Extreme Audio. We have locations in Midlothian and Mechanicsville to serve all of our clients around the Richmond area. You can also reach us by phone or by e-mail using our online contact page for more information about any of the products or services we offer.