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-   -   124 Speakers (http://www.peachparts.com/shopforum/car-audio-multimedia/209256-124-speakers.html)

remotemark 12-28-2007 01:13 PM

124 Speakers
 
I'm looking to replace all the OEM speakers in my E500. I've seen mention here of MB Quart and Rainbow as two brands that make exact size, no-mod replacements. Does anybody have any experience listening to either or both of those speakers? I'm really partial to a strong mid-range sound, and plan to augment with a small sub. My primary listening preferences are 80s and 90s British power pop, dancehall, and reggae. I have experience with Infinitys in my CE and they do fine, but I did have to modify the rear deck to fit them in. I'd like to avoid that this time.

iwrock 12-28-2007 01:20 PM

I would put 5.25 inch components in the dash.... It will give you the best midrange, as its physically the largest you can fit in there....



The 5.25 fit perfectly into the driver side no modding, and just a bit of sanding was all that was required to make it fit on the passenger side.



I run no rear speakers, other than a sub now.

remotemark 12-28-2007 01:28 PM

What did you do with the component tweeters?

iwrock 12-28-2007 02:49 PM

For now, they are sitting on the top of the grille, in their enclosure. I am either going to do a custom fiberglass mount for the tweeter, or cut a hole in the grille. But it looks OK the way I currently have it mounted for now....


Oh, one of my other friends wants me to build a custom A pillar with a mount for the tweeter, so thats my other option.


This afternoon, if everything goes well (and my car comes back from the shop), I am going to cut my extra set of speaker grilles, and mount it that way... I will let take pix, and let you decide how it looks.



I have not decided yet, but will take pix when I decide what I am going to do.


I have a set of Focal 5.25s in the dash currently, and it sounds sooo good, without my sub on...

anthonyb 12-29-2007 08:40 PM

If you want drop-in's, the Rainbow IQ120's are about as easy as it will get - remove/unplug old speakers, plug in and refit new speakers. The sound is clear and crisp, although they are a little bright at first (I think everything will be a little bright compared to stock). You won't get a whole lot of midrange out of them, however with a sub there should be enough low end oomph that the little dip in frequency response between where the coax's drop off and the sub picks up shouldn't be too bad.

Bob I 12-30-2007 12:10 PM

anthonyb:

Do you know where I can buy the Rainbow speakers? There is a web site for IQ Car Audio in Atlanta that lists them but I don't know if they are even in business. They didn't respond to my e-mails so that made me nervous about dealing with them.

anthonyb 12-30-2007 07:40 PM

I don't think IQ car audio is in business anymore - I ordered mine from them a few years back, but it sounds like they have closed doors in the last year.

It looks like Distinct USA is the current authorized distributor of Rainbow products in the US. Try their website here:

http://www.distinctusa.com/contacts.html

You can also try La Jolla Audio, they used to be a distributor of Rainbow a few years ago, they may still carry the line:

http://www.lajollaaudio.com/home.nxg

Also, just FYI - the speakers that were sold under the "IQ" series for the 124 were the Soundline coaxials (SL120). The rear speakers were the same size, but with a bracket to fit the slightly bigger speaker hole.

Bob I 01-01-2008 09:22 AM

Here is the answer I have been looking for. I had been trying to find the Rainbow IQ 120 CX for the front speaker replacement on my 1995 E420 with little luck. Thanks to anthonyb I searched for the SL 120 speaker instead and found them at a few places, but noticed that the part numbers were slightly different. The following email was sent to Rainbow support in Germany:

Your IQ 120 CX is shown as a replacement for the original front speakers. This is part number 231182. This Rainbow speaker is hard to find in the USA but I have been told by another Mercedes owner that the SL 120, part number 231142 from your Sound Line (coax) is the same speaker. Are they the same or if not, will the SL 120 work in my 1995 E420?

The answer:

It is right that #231182 and #231142 are the same speakers but the IQ 120 CX Front set (#231182) includes cables adapters to connect the rainbow speakers directly to your Mercedes cable harness. If you are fine with cutting the original cables then you can also buy #231142.

If you are interested in rear speakers as well then you need to order #231193 as this set includes also the mechanical adapters to install the speakers in the rear of your W124.

For dealer information or ordering the speakers directly by mail-order please contact our USA distributor Distinct USA in Chino, CA. Their website is www.distinctusa.com and e-Mail is info@distinctusa.com

remotemark 01-04-2008 05:16 PM

I made a zillion phone calls today and finally found out the problem with Rainbow. When Distinct took over Rainbow distribution, they stopped selling the IQ line of replacement speakers for MB and BMW in the US. They may revisit that decision for this year. In the meantime, there are no authorized sellers of the Rainbow IQ's in the US. I'm not sure if they can be bought from the Vaterland.

remotemark 01-11-2008 03:14 PM

I've decided to hold off on the speakers for now. Instead, I'm putting in a new head unit, an Alpine CDA 9885 (which can run the ipod from the HU controls), an MB Quart 5 channel amp, and a Blaupunkt 10" sub in a .65 cu ft sealed box. If piping some more power to the stock speakers doesn't work, then I'll see if my parents who still live in Germany can get me the appropriate Rainbow replacement speakers.

el presidente 01-11-2008 03:32 PM

My speakers came by Fedex last night.

nphilanthro 01-12-2008 03:58 PM

Remote Mark,
It sounds like you are putting in a pretty decent system. I don't know the output of your amp, but knowing the quality of MB Quart, I would highly recommend putting in speakers of a bit higher quality than the rainbow ones. If you put those in, they will definitely be the weakest part of your system.

This is just my personal opinion, but I would suggest putting in some lower end MB Quart or Alpine (or any other company that is comparable with them) speakers. I just think it would be a shame to go to all the work of installing an amplifier and then use it to power speakers that are below its capabilities.

Thats my $0.02

Quick Question:
Someone above noted that they fit 5.25's in their dash. I have a 1995 E300, and I know that the stock speakers are something like 4.75" and I was wondering how much work it took to fit 5.25's in there.
Thanks

remotemark 01-12-2008 06:04 PM

Are the Rainbows of such low quality that you don't think they'll sound much better than OEM? I guess I picked up from some of the other posters that they were high quality.

Zeus 01-12-2008 07:31 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by remotemark (Post 1729480)
I've decided to hold off on the speakers for now. Instead, I'm putting in a new head unit, an Alpine CDA 9885 (which can run the ipod from the HU controls), an MB Quart 5 channel amp, and a Blaupunkt 10" sub in a .65 cu ft sealed box. If piping some more power to the stock speakers doesn't work, then I'll see if my parents who still live in Germany can get me the appropriate Rainbow replacement speakers.

I was going to reply that you should upgrade the head unit and add good quality amps before replacing the speakers, but it seems you are on the right track. ;)

The OEM speakers are actually quite decent, and IMHO, don't require replacing unless physically damaged. What they really need is proper amplification. A good quality amp set to the appropriate crossover level will work wonders, as will a good head unit.

Replacement speakers are often overrated, in terms of stereo upgrades in cars. Paper cones are usually far more efficient than polypropylene, or other synthetic materials which require more power to produce a given level of volume. The stock speakers in Mercedes are more than adequate once driven with clean power.

I ran all Alpine gear in my 300E and it sounded excellent with the stock speakers (~4", 120mm). I used a 4-channel amp for the stock dash and rear shelf speakers, bridged 2-channel for a 10" sub in a ported box in the trunk, Alpine head unit. Sounded great.

nphilanthro 01-12-2008 08:38 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by remotemark (Post 1730354)
Are the Rainbows of such low quality that you don't think they'll sound much better than OEM? I guess I picked up from some of the other posters that they were high quality.

Its not that the Rainbows aren't a better speaker than the OEM speakers. They are. It's that the rest of your equipment is of higher quality than the Rainbows. This simply means that you won't be using all of your amplifiers capability.

If you would please post the specifications (the output wattage) of the amplifier that you have, or are going to get, then it would be much easier for me to tell you how different speakers will affect your sound. I have installed 8 full audio systems (head unit, speakers, amplifiers, subs, capacitors, sound dampening material, you name it...) and have listened to hundreds over the past few years at events and such, so I hope I can help you make a decision.


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