From far away, you hear it coming. The sky clouds up and you notice that birds are flying away as fast as possible. Your glasses begin to fog up, and then tiny cracks appear in the lenses. Slower birds fall from the sky like rocks. The sheet metal on your hood buckles under the intense sound-pressure wave front. Women faint. Then it crests the hilltop in front of you, and everything goes dark.
Consider this car sound system: seven 3.5-inch coaxial midrange speakers with seven integrated tweeters in the instrument panel, rear doors, and rear deck; two 6x9-inch subwoofers in the front doors; two 6x9-inch subwoofers in the rear deck; one 10-inch subwoofer in the rear deck; 12-channel amplifier outputting 900 watts.
No, this isn’t some concept vehicle sound system. And it’s not a wacko customized job. It’s an actual car that comes equipped this way from the factory. Man, I wish I worked at that factory. Imagine if they let you crank up all those sound systems as the cars rolled along the assembly line. But I digress.
This sound system is installed in the new Chrysler 300 SRT8. It is from Harman Kardon, which is clearly the leader in high-end OEM sound systems. With all due respect to Bose and the others, they can’t hold a candle to HK. And this particular system would blow out their candle, and blow the candle out of their trembling hands. I thought the 10-speaker Dr. Dre system in the Chrysler 300S was impressive. This new system makes that system cry for its momma.
After careful mathematical analysis, I have determined the following: The SRT8 sound system can power a medium-sized city for a year. It will cause California to slide into sea. It will massage the hearts of dead people and bring them back to life. And make them complain about the noise. It will create a sonic vortex that will shift you 10 milliseconds into the future. It will make the French army surrender. Although, frankly, that last thing is pretty easy to do.
The rest of the car is pretty awesome too: 6.4-liter Hemi V8 engine delivering 470 HP; 20-inch wheels; Alcantara sports seats; black chrome trim; LED running lights. I’m sure it’s pretty awesome. One thing is for sure:
My advice is this: when a 300 SRT8 drives by, duck and cover. If your office is on a high floor, call your wife and tell her you love her.
Ken C. Pohlmann is well known as an audio educator, consultant, and author. He is a professor emeritus at the University of Miami in Coral Gables, and the author of numerous articles and books, including Principles of Digital Audio and Master Handbook of Acoustics.
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