Why is the Model 3 Sound System so Good?

JWardell

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#2
One of the first things I noticed in our Model 3 was the amazing sound system. I was wondering how they achieved it, so my son and I did some investigating. All video credits go to my son, I was just the guy with the car.

Another professional, high-quality video from your son. Extra points for using a real external mic for measurements!
 

EVfusion

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#5
MQA streaming allows superb quality sound but requires the system to have an MQA compatible
digital-to-analogue converter (DAC). I was wondering if the Model 3 has an MQA compatible DAC? I understand other top end cars are now including them in their sound systems.If it does, it may be another reason for superb Model 3 sound.
 

PNWmisty

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#6
MQA streaming allows superb quality sound but requires the system to have an MQA compatible
digital-to-analogue converter (DAC). I was wondering if the Model 3 has an MQA compatible DAC? I understand other top end cars are now including them in their sound systems.If it does, it may be another reason for superb Model 3 sound.
I doubt it, most music hasn't even been encoded with MQA. On the other hand, some music does sound better than others in the Model 3 but I haven't investigated if that's because the music service distributes different bit-rate versions or what.
 
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#7
Modern music or other music with heavy bass sounds amazing in my 3. If I listen to 80s/90s music / metal / classic rock, it really sounds crappy. There is no discernable input from the subwoofer and very little bass from the other speakers. Anyone else notice this? Whenever I give demo rides I always play some modern pop stuff to highlight the system. Right now I'm just using the included Slacker radio
 

Vin

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#8
Just curious: what setting do most keep their sound system on (Immersive High?) Also what EQ settings from left to right, for example 4.0 BASS, 3.0 Mid 1.5 middle 2.5 Treble?

I'm still messing around with the ideal set up and I know it's subjective but sometimes my audio is perfect for some songs but too bassy or treblely (if that's a word :)
Also radio hosts sound very tinty when talking in Immersive High.
Thx
 
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#9
Just curious: what setting do most keep their sound system on (Immersive High?) Also what EQ settings from left to right, for example 4.0 BASS, 3.0 Mid 1.5 middle 2.5 Treble?

I'm still messing around with the ideal set up and I know it's subjective but sometimes my audio is perfect for some songs but too bassy or treblely (if that's a word :)
Also radio hosts sound very tinty when talking in Immersive High.
Thx
Hey Vin, I think we're describing a similar problem. My EQ is set flat in the default position. I've messed with turning immersive up or off, but generally leave it at the low position. I haven't messed around too much with the EQ since some music sounds fantastic the way it is set. I don't want to get into having to change it around all the time since I listen to a wide variety of music.
 

scaots

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#10
I turned off immersive completely with flat EQ. I want music to sound like it was intended. But I completely agree how flat 80s/90s sound. I guess we have to stick with modern EDM like Tesla plays at events.
 

PNWmisty

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#11
Just curious: what setting do most keep their sound system on (Immersive High?) Also what EQ settings from left to right, for example 4.0 BASS, 3.0 Mid 1.5 middle 2.5 Treble?
I leave immersive on Low for pretty much all tracks and for most songs, I like the equalizer flat but some songs do sound better with a bit of adjustment. The best sounding setting varies with the song.

I'm still messing around with the ideal set up and I know it's subjective but sometimes my audio is perfect for some songs but too bassy or treblely (if that's a word :)
Also radio hosts sound very tinty when talking in Immersive High.
Thx
I've never had a stereo that sounded best with the same setting for every song because there is no standard for that, musicians and their sound techs can mix it however they like. The better the stereo, the more you will notice this.
 

PNWmisty

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#12
Whenever I give demo rides I always play some modern pop stuff to highlight the system. Right now I'm just using the included Slacker radio
When I give a demo ride I make sure the stereo off to blow them away with how much quieter and smoother it is than an ICE car. If they are music buffs, I'll demo the stereo at the end of the ride.
 

MGallo

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#14
Just curious: what setting do most keep their sound system on (Immersive High?) Also what EQ settings from left to right, for example 4.0 BASS, 3.0 Mid 1.5 middle 2.5 Treble?

I'm still messing around with the ideal set up and I know it's subjective but sometimes my audio is perfect for some songs but too bassy or treblely (if that's a word :)
Also radio hosts sound very tinty when talking in Immersive High.
Thx
From what I’ve seen turning off immersive actually turns off some of the speakers (I think someone else may have mentioned this already). I leave it on and I have the EQ set to this.

I also want to point out in that video that he misstates the number of speakers. I knew he was wrong and I finally found the proof (it’s 15). My Infiniti Bose system had 16 speakers and this system sounds better in my opinion.
 

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Defjukie

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#15
I can't wait until people dig in to the sound system. I want to know speaker sizes/impedances, how many amps there are and what's driving what, and where everything is located.

I have plans to upgrade the system in due time (will probably start with a good set of components for the front, then maybe an upgraded sub), but I'm too busy these days to take the car apart and explore. So I'm hoping someone does the legwork for me :)
 

Twiglett

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#16
I turned off immersive completely with flat EQ. I want music to sound like it was intended. But I completely agree how flat 80s/90s sound. I guess we have to stick with modern EDM like Tesla plays at events.
hate to say it but "sound like it was intended" isn't strictly true :)
Most music is recorded to be played back through various devices and is tuned to be "average" (or flat) so it can be adjusted during output.
Also the surroundings in which the music is played makes a huge difference - again requiring adjustment.
So adjustments are expected to be made.
This is especially true now that more and more bands are allowing for vinyl again - which has completely different dynamic capabilities compared to digital.

Just a over-long way of saying - adjust your eq to match your environment and embrace it, the artists expect you to do so :D
 

scaots

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#17
hate to say it but "sound like it was intended" isn't strictly true :)
Most music is recorded to be played back through various devices and is tuned to be "average" (or flat) so it can be adjusted during output.
Also the surroundings in which the music is played makes a huge difference - again requiring adjustment.
So adjustments are expected to be made.
This is especially true now that more and more bands are allowing for vinyl again - which has completely different dynamic capabilities compared to digital.

Just a over-long way of saying - adjust your eq to match your environment and embrace it, the artists expect you to do so :D
Modern music sounds great to me with flat EQ. Older stuff, not so much. Maybe the older stuff was produced for the common crappy speakers back then. Maybe I need to dig out my boom box. Problem is that I listen to all types of music so it's hard to adjust for each. We need EQ presets tied to radio/streaming station.
 

PNWmisty

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#18
Just a over-long way of saying - adjust your eq to match your environment and embrace it, the artists expect you to do so :D
The premium stereo in the Model 3 was custom designed for the interior sound environment of the Model 3. I've noticed most recordings sound very natural with the equalizer flat. That's a sign the audio engineers did their job.

Now someone will probably set up a bunch of audio analysers inside and make a bunch of fancy charts and graphs showing how it's "not quite right" but I don't care - I've heard a lot of custom, professionally installed car audio costing silly money that didn't sound as good. And there are probably as many ways to measure the sound as there are audio engineers and measuring devices. What counts is how it sounds when you're driving down the road. And here it succeeds big time!
 

jxo

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#19
Am interested in whether the M3 can handle hirez lossless music files either through its DAC or by plugging in another source device into the system

1. Does anyone know whether high bit rate files can be handled by the onboard DAC? anything above 16/44 files? anyone tried 24/96 files whether FLAC or AIFF? Lossless CD rips at 16/44 copied to a USB stick seem to play but nothing with higher bit rates seems to work suggesting the onboard DAC is limited.
2. Can an analog input be plugged into the amplifier in the trunk? are there any unused source input jacks in the amp/preamp section? It would be great if a high rez portable player could be patched into the system via an analog input. You may be able to plug the portable hirez player in the trunk and control via the onboard wifi system on a smart phone or run a cable to the cabin area.

Bluetooth compresses (and depresses) and internal DAC limitations seem to be preventing playback of higher quality music files. Any work arounds?
 

Burnchar

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#20
I know it's popular to go after 24 bit/96KHz files, and they are a new way to sell the same music, but they really aren't superior for listening.
If some claims they can tell a difference in quality, ask them to do a blind test on volume-matched samples. No human has ever been able to consistently tell the difference. Occasionally a study claiming otherwise will pop up, but they always end up invalid due to poor experimental design.
My favorite example for sample size is when you need to store a living person's age in years. You can use a 24-bit integer to store their age from 0 - 16777215, but since nobody has lived even close to 255 years old, it makes more sense to store it in an 8-bit integer (0-255).
Sample size is a little more fuzzy. A CD recording's Nyquist frequency is 22,050 Hz (assuming absolutely stellar recording equipment), and since no human can hear frequencies that high, going past 44,100 samples per second is theoretically useless. I say that it is fuzzy because some cheap or old recording equipment is "jittery", which means the samples are inconsistently timed (some are farther apart than others). One way to compensate for this is to use a higher sampling rate, but that's mostly academic because no test has ever shown that humans can consistently tell the difference between CD-quality audio and audio recorded at higher sampling rates, even professional audio engineers with top-end tuned equipment. Jitter is reportedly one reason that CDs audio is sampled at 44,100 KHz rather than 40,000KHz (which would yield a 20KHz Nyquist frequency, matching the highest frequencies that a child with perfect hearing can identify).
MIT engineer Chris Montgomery, inventor of the Vorbis audio format and Ogg media container, argues that high sampling rates slightly reduce audio quality due to equipment limitations. I can look for the article if you are interested.

I am really not trying to be contrarian or start a scuffle; I used to think there must be a difference because more/larger samples must be better, but not so. :/

As for your questions,

1. I do not know, but it sounds as if you have proven that the answer is no. Whether it's a software or hardware limitation is unknown.
2. TechForum did a video demonstrating how to get to the amplifier. I don't know what inputs it may have, but this is one way to find out.