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-   -   Should my local shop replace my sub box for me? (http://www.wakeworld.com/forum/showthread.php?t=797952)

RonBurgundy 05-05-2013 3:51 PM

Should my local shop replace my sub box for me?
I will be able to address he issue With the, tomorrow but this being the first boat I've owned I want to make sure I'm not out of line.....

When I purchased the boat at the end of last year I had them install a stereo for me. (I wish I hadn't as I could have saved some money but for some reason I figured it was incredibly complicated). Anyway, under the dash they installed an amp and sub in a box behind the existing kick panel. (Cutout in kick panel).

This past weekend we took a bit of water over the bow while heavily weighted.....wasn't a lot but it did get the carpet water in that area and so I pulled the seat pedestal to make sure it dries out completely. While poking around heir install for the first time I pulled the sub from its enclosure to see what type of box they used and it is a standard MDF box off he shelf and wrapped in typical carpet.....ame setup you would toss in the trunk of your car.

Is this typical? I would assume being this type of environment different materials would be needed. Of course the MDF soaked up any water like a sponge and the inside has already started some mildew/mold growth from not having any moving air and of course being wet.

Am I out of line to ask them to replace the box? Pefferably I
get just the box from them and coat it with a layer of resin, but I wanted to find out if I should just eat the cost, or make a stink until they set me up?

bryce2320 05-05-2013 4:07 PM

I'd calmly go in there and tell them what happened. Obviously you dont put a MDF box in a boat, without resining it first. I just built another sub box for my boat and probably wont use anything but 3/4" birch and I still resin it. See if they will make it right without it having to get ugly, then go from there IMO. I would think that being a professional shop, they would make it right when it's that far wrong, no questions asked.

boardman74 05-05-2013 4:34 PM

A professional shop should know better than to put a MDF box in an environment that is guaranteed to get wet. They should make it right, IMO.

RonBurgundy 05-05-2013 4:53 PM

Just wanted to make sure I wasn't nuts. I couldn't imagine I'm the first person to get something of boat wet.

bryce2320 05-05-2013 5:53 PM

So, were you power turning when you dunked the front?:eek::p:p:p

RonBurgundy 05-05-2013 6:36 PM

Not likely. Hahahahah. Took a huge roller from a couple houseboats cruising by and my less than adequate driving friend received some new lessons.

RonBurgundy 05-05-2013 9:44 PM

More fun.....yanked the amp to identify what exactly they installed and I now know I blew it by trusting these guys. My tower speakers (Skylon Vector 8's rated for 300 watts RMS) are being fed a whopping 80 watts each. No wonder I have such a damn hard time getting the music up for the rider.

Definitely going to have a fun chat with them tomorrow.

mikeski 05-05-2013 10:12 PM

Friends don't let friends buy boat stereos from boat dealers...

bryce2320 05-06-2013 3:53 AM

Let us know how the chat goes. It'd b hard for me to start off nice :p

wakebordr11 05-06-2013 5:20 AM

My opinion: unless you specified what you WANTED, you got what you paid for... Sad but true. All depends on what you paid to know if you got what you paid for. Marine stereo stuff is not cheap by any means, and a quality install is even more. Post some pictures of your install. Is the sub a paper coned cheapy too?

grant_west 05-06-2013 7:04 AM

I agree with Delta force. It's very hard to give advice and or a comment Without knowing how much he was charged for the install. Most legitimate shops Don't stay in business ripping people off so it might be a case where you got what you payed for. Or might not have payed for. Most shops I know are more then happy to do this type of work "IF" they are getting payed to do so. Most of the time the lame installs I have seen is more about the shop getting little to nothing for the cost of install so the cut corners and this is what you get. I don't agree with it but hey thats life.I have seen a lot of stereo installs where they throw a prefabricated non Resin coated sub box in a boat and it works out ok. Waterproofed everything is always your best bet but not always 100% needed.

RonBurgundy 05-06-2013 9:02 AM

that is what pisses me off the most......the first time I decided to not take on a project myself and go with what the "pros" (should be pros as they sell boats/install stereos, etc. all day every day) and now i find the assumed trust that comes with spending tens of thousands of dollars is non-existant.

The stereo cost me $2400. Existing boat speakers were used as well as the head unit. What they added was an ARC XDI 805 amp (not marine and $400), and ARC 10" sub ($175) and Skylon Vector Tower Speakers ($1000). Wiring I assume was in the range of $200 (at the most)

The process went like this.....

me - "I've dabbled in car audio but never marine, I don''t want to cut any corners so can you set it up (this is while I was purchasing the boat brand new) with the Skylon tower speakers, a sub or two, and amp everything accurately?"

un-named shop owner (for now) - "well set you up. well amp the existing speakers as well (based on the way they wired it they are actually seeing less watts than if the head unit was supporting them!) and it will pound."

me - "just let me know what it costs"

owner (2 days later called me) - "we will get it done for $2400"

me - "lets do it"

how in the world was I supposed to know that "well set you up" meant "for some reason your offering up money and i'm going to put in place a stereo that belongs in the trunk of a car and take your money with a smile on my face"??

I am venting a bit because I don't want to start yelling the first time I get on the phone with them today. I feel incredibly ripped off and irritated that I left anything in their hands. ****ing morality today is almost non-existant.

Dmac420sj 05-06-2013 9:19 AM

I'm doing my first stereo right now as we speak. And ya I spent a lil more then you but by any means 2400$ isn't exactly chump change, so my advice would be what I did and research extensively on the product you want and find Internet prices and bring those in and see I'd they can come close to ball park on those. And then as far as install you have to really figure out exactly what you want and explain your expectations on the quality of install. IMO you dropped the ball even though it sounds like you were mislead to a degree you also don't sound like you were on top of the build either.

grant_west 05-06-2013 9:30 AM

Ron based off your numbers it looks like the guy charged you $625 for the install and IMO that's NO WAY being ripped that's a day's work and it didn't sound like he did a crappy install he just picked the wrong equipment Sounds like his mistake was not charging you for a nice waterproofed sub box because unless i missed somthing I didn't see a cost or charge for the sub box. So mabey he just threw a junker sub box in for free and it sucked. I would see if they can give you a new sub box and then just have it Rhino lined (water proofed) and you should be good to go. The MDF works great for boxes IF they are water proofed. Just go in a be mellow and see how far you can get with them. Let us know how it works out,

pennery 05-06-2013 9:32 AM

It does sound like you got some decent equipment you should be able to salvage out the $2400 though. Realistically they charged $800 for install including shop supplies so if anything that is what they should be reimbursing if you get anything.. The conversation between you and the installer is not very specific and I think you need to get very specific when it comes to paying an installer.
The MDF Sub box however is just a dumb idea in a boat... Good Luck...

RonBurgundy 05-06-2013 10:06 AM

Thanks. I understand everyone paranoia these days but "you need to be on top of the install" is a bit hilarious to me. How the hell would I be on top of something i'm uneducated about? If you came to me (I manage a team for AT&T) and asked to set you up with a telcom solution that would work for your business I wouldn't hand your company 50 iphones with no data plans to actually use them. Its my job as the "industry expert" to set you in the right direction, not lead you down a path you find out is incorrect when you do become educated on something.

this is what my speakers are seeing.......

Speakers - rated for 75 watts RMS - seeing 40 watts each
Tower speakers - rated for 300 watts RMS - seeing 80 each

to me this means an incredibly wrong choice was made amp wise.......am I wrong?

wakebordr11 05-06-2013 10:11 AM

Being in the "project" world and construction industry, I've learned that if you aren't super specific on everything then sometimes you get what you don't expect - and then people get upset and wonder who got ripped off or who mis-communicated. Over-communication. Just because I work with Joe Construction with 40 years experience doesn't mean he knows the right way to do sh*t or how I WANT it done. You want marine components, spec marine components. Waterproof, spec waterproof.

I think the shop will make it right, don't go in guns blazing, just explain your situation on the sub box and ask them about subs/powering the speakers. There are experienced people who you are talking to that say they didn't rape you and your sister here, but that some mistakes were made. So relax, calmness will prevail.

I personally feel after working in the industry I work that I most nearly have to write a request for proposal on anything I require - ie auto work etc that way I know exactly what is planned/costs that way there is nothing hidden or forgotten. Review every dollar spent and hour of work performed like its a million dollar contract...

RonBurgundy 05-06-2013 10:50 AM

definitely is and has been my plan. Ill let everyone know the results.

either way it is a plus as I am now as versed as I have been with car audio. Had I known this I would have spent an extra week doing more research as opposed to trusting their judgement.

onthecreek 05-06-2013 11:02 AM

the price on the amp doesn't seem bad from 2 seconds of searching. it's not enough but you didn't get hosed on it. the box is def not a good idea.

i agree with the go in level-headed approach. you need more power and a better box. let them know this isn't the system you imagined and the box hasn't survived the environment it was intended for. see what they can do. give them a chance to make it right. it is after all your dealer that you might need support from in the future.

based on the conversation above, you didn't set specific expectations. and, most dealers don't have great track records for audio installation. there are some that do but it seems there are more complaints than the other way around on these boards.

RonBurgundy 05-06-2013 4:40 PM

unfortunately the outcome was the complete opposite of what I was hoping for. Went in and was able to deal with Dave (service/parts manager) and he is awesome. Great guy to work with and really the main reason why I am willing to make the drive out there. Always incredibly helpful. Spoke with him before coming by and he asked that I bring the box as he had never seen something like what I had described.

When I got there both he and the owner (Mark) were available and simultaneously were "helping" me. Dave unfortunately was forced to take a back seat to his boss, and on went the show.

--Mark is incredibly cocky and explained to me that there is no reason in the world that the boat should ever have water in it. I posed the question of wet people from a lake and he said thats what towels were for. His recommendation for the box (after Dave had offered to replace it with a Rhino-Lined one) was to take it home, sand it, and resin it inside and out.........incredible. Said he has never had an issue using car equipment and I was the first person to ever get MDF wet...hahaha

--On to the question of the amp. This opened an awkward debate. He got in my face (and believe me I was incredibly calm and simply asking questions/looking for help as opposed to yelling about the install) about questioning his choices on installs. He said that its a waste to amp a speaker to its RMS rating, and mentioned that you could load an HLCD with 80 or 300 watts and the quality will be exactly the same, only one gets louder. Then said that he has the same amp running 80 watts to each of his 4 wetsounds REV 8's and it is literally the best system he has ever seen or heard. He then made comments about how no marine amp anywhere (and he is a wetsounds and exile dealer) makes useful amps that put out that many watts per channel....hahahha. I honestly laughed out loud when he said it.

--He then began helping someone else as apparently he gave up on me and while walking over told me to buy another amp from him if I wanted more power to the tower speakers. While helping the new customers they mentioned they didn't want to interrupt and his response was "I don't need to help him, he has too many questions anyway"

the transformation of this guy from before buying a boat to after is incredible....I've never seen such a difference. Usually if someone is a douche bag is shines through pretty quickly. You may also noticed i'm updating this thread with the owners name (Mark) and the company (Semper Speed and Marine) as he chose to do absolutely nothing to help me out, and insulted me to top it off. I don't know if it will but I really do hope this impacts a customers decision to buy from him. Now I know what i'm dealing with and I wish I had not given a single penny to them!

boardman74 05-06-2013 4:55 PM

80 watts to REV8's? Boy I was told I needed way more than that. If that was the case why do we need amps? The 25 off the head unit should be just fine. I've dealt with dealers like that a few times. Nicest people in the world until you sign on the dotted line and then complete D-bags. Worst was a new boat i bought in 99 from a dealer named Vallely in Minot, ND. It got so bad the manufacturer told them to stop working on my boat, came and picked my boat up and took it back to the factory for repair and pulled their dealer rights. Paid my payments while it was at the factory and delivered to my driveway when it was done. Guy literally called me a liar multiple times and told me I didn't spend enough money at his dealership for him to consider my complaints. Crappy dealer can really ruin a buying experience.

grant_west 05-06-2013 6:10 PM

I hate to assume but from reading your reply it sounds like your not happy with 2 main things. #1 the Sub box material. Non Resined or non water proofed MDF is not recommended but is commonly used. Depending on what price you payed for the sub box you may have a valid issue. Sounds like he offerd you a new rhino lined box and IMO that would fix your problem their.
#2 your not happy with the size of the amp they chose to power your Rev 8's. simple fix would be for them to sell you a larger amp of your choice and they credit you the difference between your original amp and the new larger one. And It might have sounded like they offered you that option.

BTW I don't know any of these people and I have no horse in this race

humboldt9 05-06-2013 8:06 PM

I met Mark at the LA Boat show last year looking at boats in their Sanger booth and to say he was incredibly cocky is an understatement. When the time comes to upgrade to the V215 Semper will not be on my list of potential dealers. I hope you get things back in order soon...

RonBurgundy 05-06-2013 9:14 PM

To clarify the above they offered to sell me an amp to run the tower speakers alone, not set me up with any type of credit.

-Mark did call me back after reading this post and seeing how upset I was about the issue. He apologized for being so busy and on edge today which I really appreciated. He did offer to replace the box with another one (which by my own choice declined as that would put me right back where I started).

-Dave also called me as well and talked me down quite a bit. He offered some solutions and I appreciated his call as well. The reality is I do want to get past this. and with them being the main dealer around here I would prefer to work with them for everything in the future. I have spent a ton of money there and would continue to do so when given the chance.

Dmac420sj 05-06-2013 9:39 PM

Don't back track on what you said and felt! Keep it real !! Dude treated you like **** and disrespected you!!! He showed his true colors!! Let him wear it!

501s 05-06-2013 10:15 PM

I love the power of the Internet and message boards. I think in this case you were totally justified and its obvious the biggest problem was the "Mark's" attitude. Guys like that suck, plain and simple. Treating you with respect would have gone a long way, and he might have even been able to sell you more gear. 80 watts to a Rev8? Come on, anyone with any audio knowledge knows that isn't enough power. Its just not. Those speaker were made to handle more power for a reason. Now the sub box is up for debate a little. Many installs use MDF boxes and as long as they don't get wet they are fine, but this is all based on where the box is installed in the boat. But to say boats never get water in them? Wow. I hope things work out for you.

Wakesounds 05-06-2013 10:28 PM

I had a similar problem years back dealing with shops that have now clue. Its too bad that people can own and operate a shop without actually knowing the field, all they do is "sell" and then your stuck with what they have given you. ...anyway since my battery is dying...I had a big issue years bag and they blew me off till they read my posts, then all of a sudden they were sorry. Its too bad people operate like that.

Houstonshark 05-07-2013 5:46 AM

Dammit! I wish I knew Mark when I was designing my system. If 80W is all you need to power each Rev8, I'm guessing 85W would have been plenty on each of my 4 Rev10's.

That means I'm wasting a total of 2000W on my 4 Rev10's!

That's the problem with a lot of salesmen in general. Many are terribly misinformed/trained and many sell out of their own wallet.

Car audio salesmen are some of the worst. I sold car audio for many years and routinely saw poor salesmen selling the same crap they had in their own vehicle. I would even hear them talk customers out of spending more money for nicer equipment.

wakebordr11 05-07-2013 5:53 AM


Originally Posted by Houstonshark (Post 1820704)
Dammit! I wish I knew Mark when I was designing my system. If 80W is all you need to power each Rev8, I'm guessing 85W would have been plenty on each of my 4 Rev10's.

That means I'm wasting a total of 2000W on my 4 Rev10's!

That's the problem with a lot of salesmen in general. Many are terribly misinformed/trained and many sell out of their own wallet.

Car audio salesmen are some of the worst. I sold car audio for many years and routinely saw poor salesmen selling the same crap they had in their own vehicle. I would even hear them talk customers out of spending more money for nicer equipment.

That's the problem I run into with a lot of salesmen - they convince themselves they know what they're talking about because a customer won't tolerate a salesman that doesn't have all the answers. It's very rare that I let someone sell me something without over researching stuff.

To the OP. I am sorry that they treated you poorly. You spent big numbers and now you're just another number to Mark. I believe you are in a position to demand a new sub-box that has been rhino-lined, that is IF Mark wants to continue a good relationship with you. Shoot, I would accept the current sub box you had so long as it was dried out/rebuilt and rhino lined so it would last... Don't let the sour grapes get to you. I would make them work with you to make it right.

phillywakeboarder 05-07-2013 6:20 AM

I think you are totally in the right, and the dealer is totally in the wrong. They held themselves out as experts in the field of marine audio; you reasonably relied on their expertise; and they rewarded you by selecting an amp/tower speaker combo that is totally ridiculous and installing a wooden box in a boat, which is equally ridiculous, at least without warning you that it can't get wet, and giving you other, more marine-ready options. (On this subject, I just finished a sub box made of Azek and its freaking amazing stuff - won't rot, holds screws like a banshee, and has its own glue that holds like crazy and makes an airtight seal to boot.) If they don't make it right by removing the xdi 805, installing an appropriate amp, removing the wooden sub box, and installing a marine-ready box, all for free, because this is the outcome you already paid good, agreed upon money for, they don't deserve to be in business. I'm curious - what gauge wire did they use to hook up the amp? I'm guessing the manual calls for something like 4 gauge for power and ground and it'd be interesting to see if that's what they used. It'd also be interesting to know what rca cables they gave you. I hope they make this right for you man!

Houstonshark 05-07-2013 6:32 AM

There's nothing wrong with using wood in a boat for a subwoofer enclosure. They used MDF.

onthecreek 05-07-2013 6:34 AM

i'd take the new box and hit it with epoxy. that way you'll know it's been water-proofed well.

did they offer to apply the small amp towards a bigger one? that seems reasonable to me. although the one you have is too small, i don't see that they owe you anything bigger w/o some additional money. you got what you paid for, they didn't charge for a big amp and install a small one. i didn't look at the specs on the amp, can you just add another amp to the system? if so, a discount for your troubles would be a nice show of good faith from them.

i hope it works out for you.

phillywakeboarder 05-07-2013 6:51 AM

I just disagree that he should have to give them more money for anything. He agreed to pay them $2400 to select and install a well matched tower speaker/amp combo and a sub enclosure that can withstand the rigors of its environment. He didn't get that. Instead, he got an underpowered amp and an enclosure that was damaged by one nose dunk, which everybody, especially a boat dealer, knows is going to happen from time to time. To make him whole, they should install a proper amp and box, for free. Do I think that a pure wooden box in a boat is okay for some applications? Sure. But, in this case, it obviously wasn't.

chpthril 05-07-2013 7:50 AM


Originally Posted by phillywakeboarder (Post 1820714)
If they don't make it right by removing the xdi 805, installing an appropriate amp, removing the wooden sub box, and installing a marine-ready box, all for free, because this is the outcome you already paid good, agreed upon money for, they don't deserve to be in business. I'm curious - what gauge wire did they use to hook up the amp? I'm guessing the manual calls for something like 4 gauge for power and ground and it'd be interesting to see if that's what they used. It'd also be interesting to know what rca cables they gave you. I hope they make this right for you man!

Actually, I would leave the XDi805 in place and use it just for the 4 in-boats and sub, then install a new amp dedicated just for the Rev-8. if the OP wants to maintain the same amp series, then go with the Arc XDi804. Its Class-D and will dleiver 240W rms x 2. Thats good solid power to the Rev-8.

wakebordr11 05-07-2013 7:55 AM

Skylon Vector 8s...

chpthril 05-07-2013 8:15 AM


Originally Posted by wakebordr11 (Post 1820743)
Skylon Vector 8s...

Yur right, Skylon 8, thanks. I knew I read it was an 8" speaker in there some where and I thought I Wet Sounds in there somewhere to. I guess its "Mark" that is happy with his 80W Rev-8's.

Disregard the brand/name, but the amp option remains the same.

pprior 05-07-2013 3:49 PM

Well the owner is a complete moron if he seriously suggested you re-use the wet MDF. Once MDF is wet, it's structurally wasted and will never be the same. And 80 watts to Rev 8's - is he REALLY going to argue that?

I will say, you have to take some responsibility by not supervising the install. I'm type-A for sure, but I ALWAYS review planned materials for any project to make sure they're up to par, in almost all cases dealers/contractors/etc try to take shortcuts to increase profit margins and most of the public are just sheep and take it.

Don't ever trust anyone to do a good job, as Ronald Reagan said "trust, but verify"

RonBurgundy 05-07-2013 4:10 PM

i actually am looking at doing the XDI 804 route as I love their amps. will turn out preety damn well and sound 1000 times better.

Houstonshark 05-07-2013 10:43 PM

Man, I wish Mark would get on here and defend his MDF enclosure and 80W per Rev8 theories.

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