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Is my sound system working correctly?

Hi there, I was hoping someone could help me as I've trawled through the threads and can't quite find an answer to my query.

I recently purchased a Tesla Model 3 long range from Birmingham NEC in March of this year. On the very first day I had speaker issues on the way home, where the rear speakers began to crackle and pop and then within the space of a couple of hours all the speakers stopped working, including the sub (apart from the very front speaker). My microphone also stopped working.

Tesla booked me in for a repair and they identified it as a damaged wiring loom which needed replacing. They have since replaced the wiring loom, and sound is much better now. But I have a niggling doubt/ suspicion that my speakers are still not functioning or working correctly. As strange as it sounds, it feels like they are an 8/10 - and by that I mean, they sound good but not amazing.

From my understanding and watching a couple of YouTube videos, I should be able to hear sound coming out of the speakers in the A-pillar and also the small speakers near the side mirrors. However, I can never hear sound come out of them. It always sounds like music predominantly comes out of the very front speakers near the windscreen, or those at the bottom door pockets.

I appreciate opinions around sound quality and speakers can be very subjective (and from reading other threads, some people think the sound system on the long range car is amazing and some say it sounds average).

How can I 100% test/ check all the speakers are working correctly, covering all my bases, so I can go back to Tesla and demonstrate they aren't working right? I.e. making sure my audio source isn't the issue; I've set the balance and equaliser correctly etc.. Is there a song/audio sample I can download, shove on a USB stick and it will produce sound from all the speakers as they should? I remember there used to be audio samples back in the day when you purchased a DVD/Blu-Ray to test home cinema systems. They were essentially samples from Dolby/THX that had a helicopter flying around so the sound came out through all the speakers. Is there anything similar to test all speakers in the car? Even when I alter the balance, I can never get sound to appear from those top speakers or the ones near the side mirrors.
 
Hi. Yes, I have tried it on both Auto and High immersive sound - still nothing. Tried it on multiple audio sources also - Radio, Spotify (Tesla account), YouTube Music through Bluetooth streaming. I'm aware Bluetooth streaming and the other audio sources aren't going to provide the highest audio fidelity, but surely I would still be able to hear sound come out of those speakers, right?
 
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Irata

Active Member
Oct 16, 2020
1,059
668
UK
Yes, you should hear something when close to each speaker albeit those speakers are very subtle. I've only noticed audio from the upper A pillar speakers when immersive sound is on (not always when set to "auto" however).

My caveat here is that I'm using either Tidal or a USB stick for music, I've never actually used Bluetooth.
 
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Durzel

Active Member
Jul 17, 2019
4,927
3,840
Bath, UK
I’m not sure you should hear distinct sounds coming from individual speakers on a professionally configured system, which is what the premium sound system is (it was created by ex Bang & Olufson engineers who selected each speaker by hand).

I don’t feel like I hear distinct sounds coming from the A pillar speakers or the wing mirror ones, but I feel like they’re working, if that makes sense. It’s hard to explain. It just feels like you’re bathed in sound.

I’m not sure how you’d adequately test your system to be honest. It might be worth trying Netflix (whilst connected to wireless to ensure better quality) and watching something with a decent sound mix that you can compare to a home system, or something.

Failing that, meeting another Model 3 owner somewhere and doing back to back comparisons using the same media.
 
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Play some music and put your ear next to the speaker, should be pretty simples.
If still not sure then book a mobile ranger as suggested above
Thank you. So, just to be clear, I should be hearing sound coming from these speakers, as long as I have immersive sound on high? Even if using Spotify, YouTube, Bluetooth streaming etc. I should be hearing some sound come through the speakers, no matter how subtle it is?
 
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Would be worth having them check it. Mobile service could that pretty easily.

Possibly unrelated but- For SR+ cars, those speakers are both disconnected completely as it comes from the factory. If they made a mistake during wiring replacement, they maybe didn't reconnect them or used the wrong harness. Just a thought.
This is what I suspect to be honest, those speakers just haven't been activated for some unknown reason or needs connecting correctly.
 
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Play some music and put your ear next to the speaker, should be pretty simples.
If still not sure then book a mobile ranger as suggested above
I think this is what I will likely need to do. I just want to cover my bases if they fob me off and say that they are working correctly. Which is why I want to find a way to isolate sound to just come out of specific speakers just to test that they work.
 
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Might it help to install a sound meter on your phone, and use that to get an objective reading of sound levels? If you can find a test track of one or more constant tones, you could use your phone to record sound levels at each speaker. You wouldn't expect them to be equal, but that would enable you to go to Tesla servicing saying "the sound from the A pillar is 20dB(A) quieter than from some other speaker".

You could also then try appealing to the good nature of other owners, send them the same MP3 and details on your settings (ie volume level, flat eq, immersive sound) and see if they get similar results. Different phone microphones will alter the readings, so you may need to control for that, but it might give you some additional objective insight.
 
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Failing that, meeting another Model 3 owner somewhere and doing back to back comparisons using the same media.
Anyone in the Leicester area who has a Tesla Model 3 long range happy to meet up
Might it help to install a sound meter on your phone, and use that to get an objective reading of sound levels? If you can find a test track of one or more constant tones, you could use your phone to record sound levels at each speaker. You wouldn't expect them to be equal, but that would enable you to go to Tesla servicing saying "the sound from the A pillar is 20dB(A) quieter than from some other speaker".

You could also then try appealing to the good nature of other owners, send them the same MP3 and details on your settings (ie volume level, flat eq, immersive sound) and see if they get similar results. Different phone microphones will alter the readings, so you may need to control for that, but it might give you some additional objective insight.
That's really helpful. I'm going to look into this more and check whether I can produce good results from a phone microphone and app. If it isn't accurate enough, I'll have a think whether it's worth investing into an external microphone. If the costs start rising, it might be simpler hiring the services of a car audio specialist and asking them to put their name to paper saying it doesn't work. It might then encourage Tesla to listen and investigate further.

But I'm jumping ahead of myself. First I need to be sure they don't work and ask Tesla to investigate further. If they refuse, they I can go down that route.

@GRiLLA mentioned really putting yours ears against the speakers - so will try that tomorrow. If I hear the tiniest amount of sound come from them, I guess they work - and I may have just been expecting more and got hyped up by the "immersive" sound of the sound system.
 
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Anyone in the Leicester area who has a Tesla Model 3 long range happy to meet up

That's a good approach. Lots of user clubs around too. Meet up for coffee and talking Tesla and a chance to hear another car. Make sure it's LR, SR+ has no sound unless people have added an after-market wiring cable.

That's really helpful. I'm going to look into this more and check whether I can produce good results from a phone microphone and app. If it isn't accurate enough, I'll have a think whether it's worth investing into an external microphone. If the costs start rising, it might be simpler hiring the services of a car audio specialist and asking them to put their name to paper saying it doesn't work. It might then encourage Tesla to listen and investigate further.

That will work. Microphones on phones are easily good enough to determine if it's on. Frequency response is not stellar for these mics, but they can tell loudness.

But I'm jumping ahead of myself. First I need to be sure they don't work and ask Tesla to investigate further. If they refuse, they I can go down that route.

@GRiLLA mentioned really putting yours ears against the speakers - so will try that tomorrow. If I hear the tiniest amount of sound come from them, I guess they work - and I may have just been expecting more and got hyped up by the "immersive" sound of the sound system.

Should be able to hear them with ear right next to them. You can also fool with the EQ sliders, and damp out everything except the high end to emphasize the treble.

You can also take off the grille cover for the tweeters that are right next to the mirrors. These are very easy to remove. You would then be able to see the diaphragm moving or not. The tiny round tweeters in the A pillars are very difficult to remove.
 
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Hi, thank you all for the messages. I've now managed to test the speakers and as some of you have suggested, I have placed my ear right up close to the upper speakers in the A pillar as well as the speakers near the wing mirror.

I can now hear sound from them, although incredibly faintly and only as my ear is up close to the speaker. From what others have said, I think this is normal?

So after all my panic it seems that they have fixed my speakers correctly, if I can hear sound very faintly from them as my ear is up close?

I must have just got over hyped by all the YouTube videos saying the "immersive sound" is incredible as I still feel the sound is quite flat and mainly coming from the front speakers. In my head I think I was expecting some type of 3D/ spatial audio, which of course this doesn't offer.
 
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MrT3

Active Member
Jun 26, 2021
1,680
1,109
UK
So after all my panic it seems that they have fixed my speakers correctly, if I can hear sound very faintly from them as my ear is up close?

I must have just got over hyped by all the YouTube videos saying the "immersive sound" is incredible as I still feel the sound is quite flat and mainly coming from the front speakers. In my head I think I was expecting some type of 3D/ spatial audio, which of course this doesn't offer.
Yes, normal. I've not tried watching movies, but maybe those high speakers produce an Atmos type effect rather than being useful for audio.

Use the fader to reduce the front bias. Personally I find the audio system a bit flat and lacking, and it shouldn't need fake immersive settings to come alive otherwise you might as well put a Bose sticker on it.
 
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GRiLLA

Active Member
Jul 5, 2020
1,938
2,100
UK
Hi, thank you all for the messages. I've now managed to test the speakers and as some of you have suggested, I have placed my ear right up close to the upper speakers in the A pillar as well as the speakers near the wing mirror.

I can now hear sound from them, although incredibly faintly and only as my ear is up close to the speaker. From what others have said, I think this is normal?

So after all my panic it seems that they have fixed my speakers correctly, if I can hear sound very faintly from them as my ear is up close?

I must have just got over hyped by all the YouTube videos saying the "immersive sound" is incredible as I still feel the sound is quite flat and mainly coming from the front speakers. In my head I think I was expecting some type of 3D/ spatial audio, which of course this doesn't offer.
Yup, that's what I get from mine, the are subtly changing the shape of the sound, it's still very much coming from the front. I slightly prefer shifting the sound further to the back than the default, gives a more complete sound from the drivers seat, but then my rear passengers complain :)
 
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