PAS 2016 ME6 TR PowerbassOE65C TY 01

If you happen to be driving a Toyota, Lexus or Scion vehicle, and you’re just not happy with the factory supplied audio system, well, you’re not alone. Sure, you’d like to make some improvements, but maybe you don’t know where to begin, or you simply don’t have a trunk full of cash to spend. Maybe you can’t find products that fit, or are
PAS 2016 ME6 TR PowerbassOE65C TY 03unwilling to do any modifications to the car. In that case, you will want to read on because this review is about a new product that is the solution you’re looking for. The folks at PowerBass understand that the weakest link in an OEM system is the factory supplied speakers. In every case, regardless of the vehicle, replacing the speakers will give you the biggest bang for the buck in terms of sonic improvement per dollar spent. To that end, they have developed a series of speakers that are designed to be direct bolt-in replacements for the OEMjunk, right down to the electrical connections. The best part is, the 6.5-inch component set sells for just over $100, making this an incredible upgrade that anyonecan afford.

The PowerBass system is called the OE65C-TY. It includes a pair of 6.5-inch mid-woofers, a pair of one-inch titanium tweeters, and everything needed to install them. The system is rated at 60 watts of continuous power handling, with 120-watt peaks.


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MIDRANGE: The midrange driver is built around a custom-tooled, injection-molded nylon basket. This provides a strong, stiff frame for the driver and eliminates any corrosion issues that are common in the automotive environment. The basket is tooled to be a perfect drop-in replacement for the factory speakers, and uses the exact same bolt pattern. Care was taken to ensure the depth of the speaker was not going to cause fitment issues, and the electrical connections are made via a direct plug and play connection, or through the use of various supplied adapter connectors. Once through the input plug, the electrical signal flows through a pair of silver-plated copper tinsel leads, to a one-inch, dual-layer copper voice coil. The coil is wound on a heat resistant Kapton former for reliability. Suspension and cone control is handled courtesy of a 50/50 wool and Nomex spider, and a rubber surround. A 20-ounce ceramic magnet provides the magnetic energy to drive the injection-molded polypropylene cone, which is trimmed out with a domed dustcap.

TWEETER: The tweeter used in the OE65CTY system measures one inch in diameter, and features a neodymium magnet and an inverted titanium dome to improve off-axis response. A diffuser is mounted in the center of the tweeter, again to help control the intended dispersion pattern. The crossover is a simple first order filter, unobtrusively integrated into the tweeter’s lead wires.

PAS 2016 ME6 TR PowerbassOE65C TY 05LISTENING

Comparing the sound quality from the PowerBass system to the OEM speakers is like night and day. Where the OEM speakers have little in the way of real mid-bass or high frequency response, the PowerBass system adds all of that important missing information back in. The OE65C-TY system has a smooth, pleasing response and provides the authority that had been lacking. Mid-bass notes are much better defined, and the level of detail that the system provides compared to the factory system is instantly evident. Should you want to add a little more power once your system is suddenly worth listening to, the PowerBass system is very happily driven with a 40- or 50-watt per channel amp, which then sounds even better.

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If you find yourself less than impressed with your Toyota-based audio system, you owe it to yourself to audition this replacement set of speakers from PowerBass. It’s literally like hearing the music again for the first time. If you are only going to make one improvement to your Toyota-based system, this should be it. #PASMAG

Contributor: Garry Springgay

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