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  1. #1

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    Default 1996 Jeep Cherokee Speaker Selection

    I just purchased a '96 Cherokee Country, and the speaker system is horrible. They're Audiobahn, and either they were played with too much wattage from the previous owner, or they just don't hold up worth a darn. Currently, there are two speakers installed in the doors and two in the rear pillar. That rattles though, and I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions to lessen that.

    My real purpose though is to ask if it would be prudent to try and install speakers in the lift gate. I know they're designed for this, though I'd no doubt need instructions on how to do the wiring, etc. Is the lift gate designed to house only 5 1/4" speakers, and of what depth? Information about this online is sketchy at best. I'd really like to install 6 1/2" speakers if possible. If I bypass the pillar, I figure I could get components and figure out a way to mount the tweeters up there. Then up front I'm not sure what would fit best in the doors. I've heard people talk of installing speakers larger than 6 1/2", but how much modifying this requires is never elaborated upon. I really don't want to have to do too much here, and I'm in no mood to mar the relatively perfect interior of this 10 year old Jeep. I'm wondering all the while where to put the crossovers. They're so large I can't be sure I could fit them beneath any panels. In the front I'd like to have components for sure. I figure I can mount the tweeters on the dash, even if the wiring has to be hidden along-side the dash. Taking apart a Jeep dash is a bit more than I feel comfortable with.

    My current thoughts for the stock mounting given of 5 1/4" are;

    MMC5250's in the front and MMC525's in the back. If I can mount components back there somehow, placing the mains in the lift gate and the tweeters up above, I'd choose the MMC5250's again. If this is all going to be too much trouble, rerouting wiring to the lift gate, finding a way to mount the tweeters in the pillar, and so on, then I will make do with the MMC525's in the pillar. I really would like to know a way to keep the entire thing from rattling so much though. Even at low volumes it's irksome at best. Some of this might be the cruddy Audiobahn speakers though. Those things sound worse than the old Kenwood speakers I inharited in my previous Jeep. At least those took some volume before they started to distort. I'm going with the more moderately priced models here because the SR5250 is just way out of my price range. There gets to be a point where you have to say no more to the "If I just spend a little bit more..." voice in your head.

    I'm powering all of this with a JVC in-dash unit. I'd like to get an amp, but this is going to be an on-going project. I would rather start with speakers, which are going to hopefully be easier to install for a first-timer like myself. I've never done anything like this before, you heard right. So anyone that wants to help me, I'll be most appreciative. Music is life, and right now I can't hardly stand to play anything when I'm driving because those speakers are so bad.

    Thanks again to anyone who can offer me assistance.

  2. #2

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    Your model jeep is made to accept 5.25" speakers in the front doors, pillars, and liftgate. Some 6.5" speakers will fit in the front door usually by redrilling some holes. I have a 99 cherokee with 6.5" polks in the front doors. This might not be possible on your year model, i'm not sure if the 97 year model and below have smaller diameter speaker holes or not. The MMC5250's will fit in the liftgate and the front door and the MMC525's will only fit in the hatch due to their depth. Polk audio db5250's will fit in the pillar tho. If you're going to run an amp to run the lift gate speakers wiring wouldn't be too difficult. This is how i would do it..... remove one of the rear interior quarter panels and run the speaker wires behind it. Remove the D pillar trim, run the wire behind that. Remove the upper trim piece that runs accross the rear of the roof and then push the wires through the rubber wiring loom that runs to the liftgate. Then remove the interior liftgate panel and run the wires down to the speaker mounts. The liftgate is held in place by screws and pop fasteners (they look like christmas trees). Remove the screws and then pry panel loose, it will pop right back in place when it is time to reinstall it. All the other panels are held in place by a few screws.
    Last edited by JeepinNC49; 11-10-2006 at 02:00 AM.

  3. #3

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    Quote Originally Posted by JeepinNC49
    Your model jeep is made to accept 5.25" speakers in the front doors, pillars, and liftgate. Some 6.5" speakers will fit in the front door usually by redrilling some holes. I have a 99 cherokee with 6.5" polks in the front doors. This might not be possible on your year model, i'm not sure if the 97 year model and below have smaller diameter speaker holes or not.
    The 1996 and prior Cherokees are different than the 1997-2001 models. I believe the speakers in the '96 and prior are indeed 5 1/4", so the MMC5250s and 525s are likely candidates (but the db series are shallower and are more likely to fit for sure).

    If you don't mind doing some modifications, 6 1/2" are probably an option. The larger speakers will give you better midbass response over the 5 1/4" models.

    A point of interest- if you like the idea of the rear speaker mounting in the 97-01 Cherokees (pods in the headliner sound bar, angled forward), I have heard of owners of '96 and prior Cherokees swapping in the later model headliner and using the 97-01 style rear speaker locations in it. A fair bit of work, but probably not really expensive. If you snag one out of a high end Jeep you get an overhead console, too.

    I was able to install the 6 1/2 db series in both doors and sound bar in my '98 Cherokee. The Momo series are deeper, and the SRs are deep also. I had to go with 5 1/4 SRs because of the depth issue when I upgraded.
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    If your door panels are like the one in the photo, you could probably do 6 1/2" in the front doors (if you don't mind losing the factory speaker grill).

    Because of the minimal depth in the Cherokee doors, pull your door panel off and measure available depth in the speaker location (with the window fully lowered), compare against the specs for the speakers you have in mind. I wouldn't be surprised if you have 2 1/16" of depth available.

    It's not a problem if you are OK with losing the factory grills and installing your new speakers surface mounted- you can use a spacer if necessary. If you have power windows/locks you have more options, because the window cranks on lower models can interfere with surface-mounted door speakers that protrude too far from the door panel surface.

    Spend some time surfing at

    http://www.sounddomain.com/rides/res...ory%7C1&page=1

    to see what other '96 and prior owners have come up with idea-wise.
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  5. #5

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    The doors would seem to fit what you stated. If I installed 6 1/2" speakers, I'd need to alter the panel opening, wouldn't I? Any suggestions on how to cut it into a large enough circular opening? Then would I be screwing them into the door panel only, or do the screws go through the plastic into the door frame behind? There isn't as much room in there as I'd hoped, unfortunately. I don't know if the hole would fit anything larger, that being the one in the frame. Even if I managed to get them in, I fear the cone would end up vibrating back against the steal of the door. I'm sure you can picture what I mean. If you don't think this would be a problem, let me know. I'd rather have 6 1/2" speakers, of course. Even if they cost more, I could install those and save up for rears. At least then I'd have good sound up front until then. Right now the Audiobahn that are installed are just barely tolerable. They've been run past their rating or simply don't last. Whatever the case, my simple JVC head unit overpowers them all too easily, and I'm tired of listening to distortions even at low volumes. I want something better.

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    Have a look at this link:

    http://www.crutchfield.com/S-UXOrlVw...d%7CPolk+Audio

    If Crutchfield says these are a guaranteed fit for the 96 Cherokee (observe location it says they fit in), they will be drop-ins. If you go to Sounddomain and do a "what-fits-my-car" search, they list not only what fits, but what also fits with modification. This would be a better gauge should you want to shoehorn 6.5s in the doors.

    For info, the speaker cutout in the metal door panel is probably 5" round (but you should confirm this) and that would give you an idea of what will fit with modification. If you don't mind going to a custom install, you could enlarge the hole, surface mount your new speakers with the supplied grills, and secure them through both the door trim panel and inner metal door panel with mounting screws.

    If you have manual windows, make sure your new grills (that stick out farther than the factory ones) won't prevent you from rolling down the windows by blocking the winders. If you have power windows you have more options because you can use a spacer and mount a really deep speaker in the doors- probably most 6.5s and maybe some 6.75s.
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  7. #7

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    Thanks for the info. Modding the hole is a bit beyond what I could do, unfortunately, and to pay for a custom installation like this wouldn't make sense with my budget. That sight says the MMC 525's will fit in the front doors, tailgate, or pillar. So I think getting two pairs of those is my best bet. I still don't know how to ensure the pillar doesn't vibrate too much though. They might be best in the tailgate, but I don't know if they'd have the same soundstage there, especially if there was cargo loaded. I'd like to go with 6.5" speakers. It's just not something I know enough to do right now. I'd feel pretty stupid if I bought them and couldn't get them installed. Then again, it might be possible with a spacer to install them in the doors without widening the opening in the door. It depends on several factors, I suppose. I've still not found anyone who's done much like this online. I'll keep looking though. Thanks again.

  8. #8

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    Default speaker question

    Quote Originally Posted by JeepinNC49 View Post
    Your model jeep is made to accept 5.25" speakers in the front doors, pillars, and liftgate. Some 6.5" speakers will fit in the front door usually by redrilling some holes. I have a 99 cherokee with 6.5" polks in the front doors. This might not be possible on your year model, i'm not sure if the 97 year model and below have smaller diameter speaker holes or not. The MMC5250's will fit in the liftgate and the front door and the MMC525's will only fit in the hatch due to their depth. Polk audio db5250's will fit in the pillar tho. If you're going to run an amp to run the lift gate speakers wiring wouldn't be too difficult. This is how i would do it..... remove one of the rear interior quarter panels and run the speaker wires behind it. Remove the D pillar trim, run the wire behind that. Remove the upper trim piece that runs accross the rear of the roof and then push the wires through the rubber wiring loom that runs to the liftgate. Then remove the interior liftgate panel and run the wires down to the speaker mounts. The liftgate is held in place by screws and pop fasteners (they look like christmas trees). Remove the screws and then pry panel loose, it will pop right back in place when it is time to reinstall it. All the other panels are held in place by a few screws.


    You mention speakers in lift gate, and rear doors. any information, pics or details available?
    Please EMAIL them to me if you could. I have 97 Cherokee Sport 4 door

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