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Under one of the Kia K5 forums, someone had a great writeup about the 8" head unit specifications, with RTA and oscilloscope graphs and other measurements. The front speakers get about 35 watts from the head unit and the rear get about 10 watts. The head unit utilizes "all pass" filters as well. So, its really difficult to get these to an audiophile-quality level without using a DSP and amplifier, regardless of the speaker quality.

With that said, I kept the factory speakers and added a KAC-m1814 (4 channel amp) off of only the system's the rear channel outputs. Then, ran the amp's front 2 channels to the rear door speakers (high pass filter on the amp set about 60 hz). I brought the rear speakers up to the level of the front speakers. (I don't care about a front sound stage) Then, I bridged the rear channels of the amp and ran to a non-functional Rockville 6x8 sub that I gutted to use as a passive subwoofer (with the LPF set to about 100 hz).

So, for about $150 and 2 hrs time, It sounds much better than stock. Next, I may swap the factor tweeters with JBL club 750 tweeters and try to cross them over around 3500hz. I had tried pioneer A300 tweeters, but the factory tweeters sounded better (in my opinion).
This was a great suggestion. Thank you. Right after getting my SC I put in two sets of Focal 2-ways running off the OEM head unit. After seeing this post, and doing the further research including how to get a clean signal from the head unit- I then installed a Rockford Fosgate 8 inch powered sub behind the rear seats where the Bose Sub would go in the limited. Sounds Amazing, I have to turn down the bass quite a bit. The wired bass control is a nice feature. Also, as suggested, the speaker signal came from the front and not the rear speakers. I can always add a 4-channel amp, and add focal tweeters, but it sounds great with superior imaging now and it was affordable.
 

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Hello cruzers,new member here, just wanted to let everyone one know it’s pretty easy to upgrade the audio in the Santa Cruz. I replaced all the speakers and added a 4 channel amplifier. I didn’t take out the factory head unit, all signal wires were located in the kickpanels ( I am using amp with high level inputs). The sound is like night and day from the underpowered factory system. I’ve been in the car audio field for 25+ years and have plenty of experience. If anyone needs any help upgrading their factory system, I’m here to help! BTW this was done in the non Bose SEL vehicle.
I need a lot of help lol. I just got the 22 SC Limited in June and would like to update the amp for the speakers and add two 10s with an amp. I went to a few places and it’s insane how much they want. Do you know what kind of amp is under the driver’s seat? Is it a four or five channel. I wasn’t sure if that amp went to just the door speakers or the center speakers too.
 
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