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Premium Member
2017 Outback 2.5 Premium with Moonroof, Eyesight
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My new Outback has too much bass, almost headache inducing on FM and XM. FM seems worse. I have played with the Equalizer and can't seem to reduce the booming sort of sound.

I found a thread about a secret menu. The instructions say to Press presets 1 and 3 and Tune at the same time while the radio is off. I can't get the Preset's visible if the radio is off, so it seems the secret menu does not apply.

Any thoughts or ideas how to reduce the bass booming sort of sound?
 

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2016 Outback 3.6R Limited with Tech Package. Venetian Red Pearl/Ivory Leather.
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36 Posts
Too much bass

My new Outback has too much bass, almost headache inducing on FM and XM. ....
The too much bass is a big problem and already present in my 2016 model Premium H-K sound package. There are two issues: too heavy bass from the front L/R door speakers, and inadequate EQ design to correct. In my case the headache booming bass (EQ of bass set to -5, the max reduction) is most pronounced when playing high quality music from the USB port. High quality means MP3 at 320 Kbps CBR bitrate, the max MP3 allows. FM radio is also a headache.

I have done the following to rectify the problem somewhat:
1) Move the front/back balance to the back more so that output of the 2 offending L/R speaker is reduced. This will also reduce the midtones so increase the EQ midtones a notch to compensate. This works for all sources.
2) For my music library I have used an editor to reduce deep bass of the most offending tracks to compensate for the Subaru. Most of these are jazz stuff.
3) I have installed a smartphone (without any provider service) mainly as a second GPS mapper, as a dashcam, on-the-road voice recorder. But I found that after installing my music library into it (about 45GB worth) and playing it with a good music app, I can use the EQ of the app to precisely correctly the Subaru heavy bass. This works for both Bluetooth and analog output jack, but I settled for analog output to the head unit due to its better quality (if I use a high quality cable)*. The head unit has a EQ for each source, and I found out the EQ for analog input can reduce bass more than the USB input! So right away I have a reduction beyond the -5 of the USB source. Touch up a bit using the EQ of the music app and I now enjoy a perfect balance with the booming eliminated. But this does not work for radio.

* There is another reason for connecting my dash smartphone audio to the head unit by analog cable, instead of Bluetooth. The frees up Bluetooth for my 'real' smartphone with full provider services. As you know the head unit connects to your smartphone using Bluetooth for both audio and phone. I don't want to constantly switch Bluetooth connections between these two devices.
 

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2017 Outback 2.5i Limited, Ice Silver
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433 Posts
This is a interesting thread...I am not sure how many times I have read threads on here where people were complaining that there is not enough bass.
 

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2016 Outback Premium 2.5, Ice Silver
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889 Posts
mactoys you sound like my dad who didn't like the bass coming through my bedroom walls, anyways turn to some heavy metal and it'll sound better!:wink2:
 

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Registered
2017 OB 2.5 Premium w/ES 2002 2.5 OB 142k mi
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301 Posts
My new Outback has too much bass, almost headache inducing on FM and XM. FM seems worse. I have played with the Equalizer and can't seem to reduce the booming sort of sound.

I found a thread about a secret menu. The instructions say to Press presets 1 and 3 and Tune at the same time while the radio is off. I can't get the Preset's visible if the radio is off, so it seems the secret menu does not apply.

Any thoughts or ideas how to reduce the bass booming sort of sound?
I don't have a solution but you didn't mrntion what Outback you have. There are 2 different head sytems and adjustment systems.
 

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Premium Member
2017 Outback 2.5 Premium with Moonroof, Eyesight
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 ·
mactoys you sound like my dad who didn't like the bass coming through my bedroom walls, anyways turn to some heavy metal and it'll sound better!:wink2:
Get off my lawn :)

Seriously, I like bass. I love heavy metal. I don't like it to overwhelm other sounds and also be "muddy".
 

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Premium Member
2017 Outback 2.5 Premium with Moonroof, Eyesight
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't have a solution but you didn't mrntion what Outback you have. There are 2 different head sytems and adjustment systems.
I have the 17 Premium. I have moved the mix more to the back, made some EQ adjustments and it is better. Still some "muddy" bass at times based on the volume. Anybody have a pic of their optimal EQ settings?
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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26,846 Posts
If you all with 17s want more Bass,

get a good old Billy Bass.

 

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'17 OB 3.6R Touring [ex-'09 OB Ltd. (2009-16); ex-'01 Audi A6 Avant (2001-2009)]; '14 Impreza Sport Premium
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924 Posts
Definitely agree with OP (I'm a musician with 40+ yrs experience)... too much bass in the H-K '17 Touring.

I solved it (mostly) by adjusting the fader back towards the rear just a bit and cutting bass EQ by a notch, but it's still a bit boomy.
 

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Premium Member
2017 Outback 2.5 Premium with Moonroof, Eyesight
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21 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Definitely agree with OP (I'm a musician with 40+ yrs experience)... too much bass in the H-K '17 Touring.

I solved it (mostly) by adjusting the fader back towards the rear just a bit and cutting bass EQ by a notch, but it's still a bit boomy.
Great to know that I am not crazy. Wait, I might still be...

Which EQ numbered settings did you move? Or do you have an actual bass setting? Thanks
 

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'17 OB 3.6R Touring [ex-'09 OB Ltd. (2009-16); ex-'01 Audi A6 Avant (2001-2009)]; '14 Impreza Sport Premium
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924 Posts
Great to know that I am not crazy. Wait, I might still be...

Which EQ numbered settings did you move? Or do you have an actual bass setting? Thanks
I don't remember exact settings, I set it months ago.

There are separate bass, middle & treble settings there. IIRC I bumped treble & mids up a notch and bass down a notch (maybe 2). Better but not what I'd call super quality sound (acceptable). I'll try to remember to check when I'm in the car later.
 

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25 Posts
I brought this thread out of the grave...has anyone found a good custom sound setting recently for the 2017 Outback Premuim?
 

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2017 OB 2.5 Premium w/ES 2002 2.5 OB 142k mi
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301 Posts
I brought this thread out of the grave...has anyone found a good custom sound setting recently for the 2017 Outback Premuim?
I set the 2 left bands down to 0. Still too much bass on certain radio stations and CDs.
 

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I did some research online about the best sound settings for the Outback and I found this: https://i.redd.it/nxg1t7efuquy.jpg

I have those settings applied to my 2017 Outback and the speakers definitely sound louder and more “richer.” Can anyone else try those settings and see what they think?
 

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I listen to a lot of jazz and classical. I agree that the bass is way too much. I put a pink noise disc in the CD player and used an RTA (real time analyzer) to come up with the settings below. The bass is still a bit boomy, but it's a definite improvement, at least to my ears and the music I like to listen to.

Or, another way... steps above or below 0 dB:

63 -10 (all the way to the bottom)
160 +6
400 +10 (all the way to the top)
1K +6
2.5K +3
6.3K +5
12.5K -1
 

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'15 Outback 2.5i Premium
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2,590 Posts
Wow... these graphs are almost opposites of each other! Welcome to the world of audio and what "sounds good to me".



 

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Registered
2017 OB 2.5 Premium w/ES 2002 2.5 OB 142k mi
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301 Posts
I listen to a lot of jazz and classical. I agree that the bass is way too much. I put a pink noise disc in the CD player and used an RTA (real time analyzer) to come up with the settings below. The bass is still a bit boomy, but it's a definite improvement, at least to my ears and the music I like to listen to.

Or, another way... steps above or below 0 dB:

63 -10 (all the way to the bottom)
160 +6
400 +10 (all the way to the top)
1K +6
2.5K +3
6.3K +5
12.5K -1
Looking at your pic guess I set my 2 left bars to below 0. They are the bottom. I didn't actually go out to the car in the dark to look at the equalizer when I poste a couple of days ago.
 
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