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I'm looking to replace the stock speakers in a gen 2 LT sedan with the stock 6-speaker system. Not looking to shake the neighborhood with bass as much as have a more clear, lively system for music. Can anyone recommend speakers that are "worth it" and don't require replacing the stock amp? And, how essential is a new DAC?

Thanks!
 

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Hey there, I too am getting ready for the summer project of new speakers and adding a sub to my 2019 cruze rs sedan. It has the stock speakers and sounds like its playing thru a funnel. I too want to keep the original head unit.
I have done some investigating and have spoken with a few people (installers who know there stuff) these are the results and where I am headed.
Original head units have a built in eq that has been preset for the crappy speaker to supply optimum sound output. This eq is not accessible. A Dac needs to be added to flatten the source and be remixed using multiple eq's built withing the Dac or DSP (digital signal processor) if you will. So I shopped around....you can get them for a good price and up to and over $1000 easy. Some amps have eq's built in. With my last conversation with my contact at our local car audio installer and supplier there are no need for more than 1 eq.

In closing, I went with the Dayton DSP-408, processor $300 Canadian. 4 channels in 8 channels out. Has multiple channel eq' ing, time delay and crossover capabilities all wrapped up in a box that is 1" high by 4"x6#. Comes with a wire harness for all power supplies, and speaker inputs. Line outputs are of 8 rca connecters that will go to the amp.
I already had a sub from my previous car and was actually happy with its sound. Nothing crazy, just a Pioneer 10" 250 watt rms suppling 1100 peak watts from walmart in a speaker enclosure. As like you I am not looking to shake down a road but a nice full range from crisp highs to defining lows.
I looked into the amps. I did not want to run multiple amps but at the same time wanted to upgrade my speakers which would require amping to a degree. I went with a 5 channel amp from Kenwood. Best price even after checking online at $390 at my local dealer. I purchased the Kenwood X802-5. Class D 5 channel amp. For front speakers I went with the XR-1800P Excelon Reference series. Big note on these. Our doors curently house a 6 3/4 size speaker. These Kenwoods are 7" mids that comes with adapters to fit the door mount which will deliver more low frequencies from the door. They also come with passive crossovers. I did not want to go cheap on the speakers as they are the final output. Payed $349.00 for these. Like I said its a summer project and have been picking up items here and there. Other than some wire and connectors I still have the rear speakers to get. Going to go with the Coax KFCX183C for $169.00.
Plans are to run speaker wire to the trunk area from lower kick rail of each side of the car. Amp and DSP-408 mounted on a board which will be suspended from the inside roof of the trunk. Its out of the way but accessible if and when needed to dial into the dsp with my laptop via usb cable. Keeps all the heavy wiring in the trunk area where it can be concealed by panels and its where the battery is. Short distancing for power is the best practice.
My only question is for the install of the front dash tweeters. I cannot find a video or written reference for replacement. Waiting on a call from my son-in-law who is an auto body repair tec. Do the grills in the front dash just pop out?
Sorry for the long winded answer to your question but this is my opinion after investing time, investigation, and $ into a better sound.
Good luck!
 

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I've got a Premier with the 9-speaker Bose and it's pretty nice. The little sub under the hatch floor is decent but I want to replace it with something else. Problem is everything I can find for videos and stuff for installs are for the sedan with Bose which uses rear deck speakers for subs apparently.
 
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