FI Car Audio - has anyone here ever had dealings with them? - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 05:41 PM - Thread Starter
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Fi Car Audio - has anyone here ever had dealings with them?

Here's the scoop - I have a UM18-22 on backorder now. Newest anticipated in-stock date is March 8 (it was pushed back by two weeks from Feb 21 a few days ago). I was reading data-bass.com and saw that he had reviewed 3 older models from FI Car Audio, so I checked out their website. There are various customization options available, so I called them up this afternoon, and the owner, Scott, answered the phone. After a nice chat with him, he said that he has done many of his subs customized for HT use - he can change the suspension to make it more compliant to lower the Fs (my main concern, since my mini marty is already built and tuned to 17 Hz), increase/decrease the Qes/Qms/Qts to suit a specific application (ported box), increase Xmax, power handling, and make several other customizations. What's more, I asked what the extra charge is for the customizations/changes, and said there is no extra charge for what I was looking for.

The specific (base) model sub I'm considering is the SSD18. It's $299 ($25 cheaper than the UM18), has more power handling than the Ultimax (1250 W RMS for the FI sub vs. 1000 W RMS for the UM), and can be tailored to suit a HT situation in a large-ish (8.2 cu ft net) ported box. The only drawbacks are that it uses a "typical" cone w/ dustcap architecture (I'm kinda partial the UM's lack of a dustcap), and that it only has a 1-yr warranty, vs. 5 years with the UM. The current lead time is about 2-3 weeks since he machines and builds these by hand in Las Vegas, vs. the UMs current 6+ week backlog at their factory in who-knows-where.

What are your thoughts/opinions/experiences with the company or situation? I've always been the type of person to buck trends, so not having the currently very popular, but tried-and-true, mini marty/UM18 combo is intriguing to me.

BTW, I am not affiliated with FI in any manner.

Edit: I do plan on calling him back in the next couple of days since I have some other questions: Does he provide test data with the custom subs (I'm thinking probably not)? What power handling increase options are available for the SSD18? For the SSD18 Neo (uses neodymium magnets), can the Fs be significantly lowered?

Can you all think of any other questions I should ask?

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post #2 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 05:45 PM
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FI Car Audio - has anyone here ever had dealings with them?

I love Ficar. I had 4 of their IB3 18” subs in an infinite baffle design in my last house and it was straight up awesome.
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post #3 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 05:52 PM
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I cant say enough good things about FI car audio for home theater. I have 4 IB15's in my room and in the past had 4 IB12's. 2 different friends set up IB18's in their theater and I put a 15" FI in my truck. The company makes everything custom to order and is easy to get responses via facebook messenger. I ended up changing my order around several times and they worked with me super well.

The FI infinite baffle for home theater is the best sounding subwoofers I've ever heard and absolutely destroys the (comparatively boomy sounding) bass coming out of the $4k JL fathem 13 at the high end local shop.
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post #4 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 06:24 PM
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Granted this was about a decade ago, I sent several blown subs to them for reconing. They were all 15"s but several different brands and Scott was able to get them all reconed. Not sure if they still provide the service but I was VERY happy with their work. I'm seriously considering a couple 15s from them when finances permit.
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post #5 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 08:04 PM
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I've purchased multiple subs from Scott going back to the Desjitl Audio days (Blueprint drivers) - great guy and great products.
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post #6 of 30 Old 01-25-2018, 11:35 PM
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I just ordered a Fi SSD Neo 15" a couple days ago for my vehicle (when with the SQ/HT option). Hope to have it in a couple more weeks.

Fi is a very well respected brand within the car audio SPL community. I've heard nothing but good things about them and I've had good luck with them in the past.

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post #7 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 07:57 AM
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I have 2 IB318s sitting here, trying to find more since they changed/updated the design. I'd like to use them but want/NEED more than 2. I do agree that they are good speakers.
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post #8 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by markmon1 View Post

The FI infinite baffle for home theater is the best sounding subwoofers I've ever heard and absolutely destroys the (comparatively boomy sounding) bass coming out of the $4k JL fathem 13 at the high end local shop.

This.
My experience as well.
After you’ve had IB in an HT, it’s hard to go back.
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post #9 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 09:44 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnDean View Post
I have 2 IB318s sitting here, trying to find more since they changed/updated the design. I'd like to use them but want/NEED more than 2. I do agree that they are good speakers.
Have you called Fi up to see if the can custom make 2 more with the same specs as your current models? Or, maybe they have a couple of NOS laying around that aren't listed on their website. Can't hurt to ask! Or just sell the two you have and order 4 of the current model.
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post #10 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 11:16 AM
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I needed two more of the older version IB318s after they went to the newer version. Called them up and they custom made them for me.
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post #11 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 11:41 AM
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Twice I attempted to reach out to Fi about getting T-S parameters for some of their offerings and never heard anything back from them. This is why I reached out to PSI Car Audio who helped me out twice - first with a custom-built pair of Platform 2 12s, and now with my new Platform 3 18s.
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post #12 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 02:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCJetta View Post
Twice I attempted to reach out to Fi about getting T-S parameters for some of their offerings and never heard anything back from them. This is why I reached out to PSI Car Audio who helped me out twice - first with a custom-built pair of Platform 2 12s, and now with my new Platform 3 18s.
I'm checking out Psi now... wow, they have a lot of options... I'm going to get a quote from them as well. My wife will be happy that they have color choices for the cones and dustcaps as well (she's the designer in the house, wait to you see the box I'm building).
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post #13 of 30 Old 01-26-2018, 06:02 PM
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Scott was always a stand-up guy. Never heard a bad thing about him.

I think he would treat you right and he knows how to put together a sub so it doesn't come apart.
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post #14 of 30 Old 01-29-2018, 03:47 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dTorC4 View Post
Have you called Fi up to see if the can custom make 2 more with the same specs as your current models? Or, maybe they have a couple of NOS laying around that aren't listed on their website. Can't hurt to ask! Or just sell the two you have and order 4 of the current model.
Somehow I missed this quote.
I emailed them and didn't get a response. I should probably call them, but work has been brutal lately.

Did you order anything?
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post #15 of 30 Old 01-29-2018, 04:05 PM
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I've purchased multiple subs from Scott going back to the Desjitl Audio days (Blueprint drivers) - great guy and great products.
A few years ago I melted one of my Blueprint 1001's due to pure stupidity on my part. I contacted Fi and Scott searched the warehouse to find their last Blueprint voice coil. The cone was was different on the recone kit but it works perfectly again.

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I'm checking out Psi now... wow, they have a lot of options... I'm going to get a quote from them as well. My wife will be happy that they have color choices for the cones and dustcaps as well (she's the designer in the house, wait to you see the box I'm building).
David is just a accommodating as Scott when it comes to working with you. I've had a custom 15 built from PSI as well as a pair of custom 12 in recone kits. The added bonus is that I don't pay for shipping. I wait until David drives into town and he will drop off my order or we will meet somewhere. I've even been the the shop once. His attention to detail when he builds a sub is incredible.
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post #16 of 30 Old 01-30-2018, 11:29 AM
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Free pick up would be cool!

But he does a pretty great job of packing them up and keeping them protected on an interstate journey. 85 pounds and showed up without issue, and FedEx was the carrier.

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post #17 of 30 Old 01-30-2018, 07:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Free pick up would be cool!

But he does a pretty great job of packing them up and keeping them protected on an interstate journey. 85 pounds and showed up without issue, and FedEx was the carrier.
How long did it take for you to get your 18 shipped once you placed the order? Is it for HT or car use? What were the customizations he did?
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post #18 of 30 Old 01-30-2018, 08:22 PM
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How long did it take for you to get your 18 shipped once you placed the order? Is it for HT or car use? What were the customizations he did?
He may tell you 4 to 6 weeks; mine took 2.

It has custom soft parts and voice coils to model similar to the UXL or the LMS sub. The motor is the same as the car audio version.

I'll be posting a build thread for them soon. Just so busy right now, I still need to break them in yet.

Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
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post #19 of 30 Old 01-30-2018, 08:36 PM - Thread Starter
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He may tell you 4 to 6 weeks; mine took 2.

It has custom soft parts and voice coils to model similar to the UXL or the LMS sub. The motor is the same as the car audio version.

I'll be posting a build thread for them soon. Just so busy right now, I still need to break them in yet.

Sent from my SM-G930P using Tapatalk
Did he provide T/S measurements? If so, would you mind sharing them?
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post #20 of 30 Old 01-31-2018, 07:42 AM
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Here's what he tested right before they shipped:


@eng-399 tested them two weeks ago and got similar results, but PSI told me with more break-in the Fs should lower more. I honestly need to take the time and do more break-in with them as they are still quite stiff, especially compared to my Platform 2 12s which I'm running currently. What a single one does free-air is almost comical; but then I've never owned "big" subs before.
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post #21 of 30 Old 01-31-2018, 08:06 AM - Thread Starter
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Here's what he tested right before ...]
That is fantastic. Thank you for sharing.

What are the specs for the box you run this in?
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post #22 of 30 Old 01-31-2018, 08:26 AM
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Still mulling that, but most likely around 10 cubes at 17Hz. I'm working on finalizing my front screen area this weekend and that will determine how much space I'll ultimately have, and to what degree I want to hide the monsters visually. Then Mike will be building the enclosures for me as he's a local Chicagoland legend.

As mentioned prior, watch for a build thread soon!
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post #23 of 30 Old 01-31-2018, 05:17 PM - Thread Starter
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Awesome, man. My box is about 8.4 cu ft net before the driver, also tuned to 17 Hz (revised mini Marty box). I'll be looking forward to your build thread.
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post #24 of 30 Old 01-25-2019, 04:38 PM
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Talking

Yup.So i have 2 ib318 v2 subwoofers that took a month to get to me.
I need 30 more ib318 v2 subwoofers to up my collection to 32 subwoofers.
Happy with Fi car audio subwoofers.
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Denon 4k avr, diy l c r surround Behringer nx3000 dsp Fi car audio ib318 v2 310 cubic foot concrete ib lg pf 1500 projector.steren projector mount at diy 135 inch screen triple 15 boss build .
Pending buy fourty 6 inch drivers for some new mains new 4k lg hu70la projector 1240 cubic foot ib for 16 fi car audio ib318 v2 subwoofers 4 nx3000 dsp
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post #25 of 30 Old 01-25-2019, 04:40 PM
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Fi is great. I now have 4x12 FI ib3 and 4x15 Fi IB3v2 in my theater. Every one of their orders are made custom to order. And you can contact them via facebook messenger for very fast responses.
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post #26 of 30 Old 01-27-2019, 09:07 AM
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I just making a Stormbreaker Cube and I am using a Fi HT-1 18 inch sub and it sounds pretty awesome to me!
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post #27 of 30 Old 10-07-2019, 02:18 AM
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I am planning to built my 1st IF sub with 4 X ib318 v2. My Front Baffle wall measure 18 feet (W) by 12 feet (H). Distance between back of Baffle wall and brick wall (treated with rockwall) is 3 feet.

I am seeking forumer advise and experience on how you build you IB sub? Are you able to share your IB sub design? Do you cut 4 opening horizontally across the Baffle wall for the IB318 manifolds ? How do you mount the IB318? Do you mount them on stand alone sub frame or directly to the Baffle wall frame ?

Looking forward to all advises and guidances.
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post #28 of 30 Old 10-07-2019, 06:28 AM
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Originally Posted by wongikmg View Post
I am planning to built my 1st IF sub with 4 X ib318 v2. My Front Baffle wall measure 18 feet (W) by 12 feet (H). Distance between back of Baffle wall and brick wall (treated with rockwall) is 3 feet.

I am seeking forumer advise and experience on how you build you IB sub? Are you able to share your IB sub design? Do you cut 4 opening horizontally across the Baffle wall for the IB318 manifolds ? How do you mount the IB318? Do you mount them on stand alone sub frame or directly to the Baffle wall frame ?

Looking forward to all advises and guidances.
There are several ways you can do this. You can build a manifold so the subs are facing each other. 2 manifolds each with 2 speakers or 1 taller manifold that holds all 4 speakers and vent that into the room via a single opening. People like this approach because physical vibrations are canceled out by opposing speakers. You can cut a hole for each speaker and have them point into the room. If you do this, I'd put them all near the floor rather than in the middle of the wall because that part of the wall is more reinforced. It's easier to bend something in the middle than at the top where it's attached. This is the route I took and it worked great. You could build out a spacer and put the subs on that then mount that to the wall and cut a slot in the wall. It wouldn't need to be the size of all the speakers just enough to vent into the room and not restrict the air flow.

The last one is the approach I took. See photos of my closet.

I've done builds with manifold as well. They sound the same either way.
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Audio: Anthem mrx720 running 7.1.4, McIntosh MC-303, MC-152, B&W 802d3 LR, B&W HTM1D3 center, B&W 805d3 surround, B&W 702S2 rear, B&W 706s2 x 4 shelf mounted for atmos, 2 sub arrays both infinite baffle: 4x15 fi audio running on behringer ep4000 + 4x12 fi audio running on 2nd ep4000.
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post #29 of 30 Old 10-07-2019, 08:34 AM
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>You could build out a spacer and put the subs on that then mount that to the wall and cut a slot in >the wall. It wouldn't need to be the size of all the speakers just enough to vent into the room and >>The last one is the approach I took. See photos of my closet.

This is my preferred approach too.
when you mount the spacer to the wall how do you minimize the energy transferred to the baffle wall. Do you leave a small spacer gap and seal with isolation material?

Are you able to share the front view of your IB sub?
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post #30 of 30 Old 10-07-2019, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wongikmg View Post
>You could build out a spacer and put the subs on that then mount that to the wall and cut a slot in >the wall. It wouldn't need to be the size of all the speakers just enough to vent into the room and >>The last one is the approach I took. See photos of my closet.

This is my preferred approach too.
when you mount the spacer to the wall how do you minimize the energy transferred to the baffle wall. Do you leave a small spacer gap and seal with isolation material?

Are you able to share the front view of your IB sub?
I have two of the IB 18s in a manifold in my living room. Had them about 2 years without a hitch. Love them and dealing with FI was great.

LionelC
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