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Klipsch 09-27-2017 05:05 PM

Ask Klipsch
Since the launch of the new 2018 MasterCraft models, we have been closely monitoring the Team Talk forum for feedback on the system and to find out what questions are being asked that we can answer. The goal of this thread is to become a repository of Questions and Answers for the Klipsch MasterCraft system.

We look forward to providing unmatched performance for your on-the-water enjoyment in your new MasterCraft boat for years to come. This thread will be updated as needed to keep frequently asked questions and tips readily available.

Who is ASA and how we developed the Klipsch system?
ASA Electronics is a manufacturer of audio, video and vehicle safety products for specialty markets. We design and manufacture products that go into some of the harshest environments for consumer electronics including marine, motorcycle, power sports, construction, agriculture, commercial vehicle, fleet & RV. Our products are primarily developed and sold to as Original Equipment (OE) for major companies who are household names across the globe. We were founded in 1977 and are located in Elkhart, Indiana.

ASA partnered with Klipsch to bring our combined expertise in high-fidelity speaker design, marine durability and OE system integration into a complete audio package. Together, we introduced a true high-performance OE system to market, made exclusively for MasterCraft.

What makes up the Klipsch MasterCraft audio system? How is it different?
The all-new Klipsch audio system for MasterCraft is a first of its kind in the boating industry. It’s a fully-integrated audio system built and tuned specifically for each MasterCraft boat. Unlike many products that are aftermarket solutions installed at the factory, the Klipsch system is a true OE solution – none of the speakers, amplifiers or the DSP featuring Bongiovi DPS were existing models!

It’s engineered from the ground up to not just perform exceptionally well in the marine environment, but also last. With over two years of development and thousands of hours of continuous durability testing with ZERO failures, the system not only outperforms but will outlast any other factory system to date.

Amplifiers - The Klipsch MasterCraft system utilizes high-power, extremely efficient Dynamic Class-D amplifiers that produce tons of pure, clean power with increased headroom across the entire audio frequency band, allowing the listener to “feel the music”.

High Fidelity Marine Grade Speakers with Cast Aluminum Baskets
- For the speakers, we chose to use titanium horn tweeters. They reproduce brass, strings and vocals with a life-like presence in a way that regular tweeters can’t seem to emulate. The speaker coils have increased sensitivity, offering higher output level for the given audio signal input.

The speakers feature a cast aluminum basket that allows the back wave from the cone to escape into the enclosure easier due to a less restrictive frame. The thick cross sections and thermal conductivity of the metal help to dissipate voice coil heat more readily. Resonances are above the working range of the speaker cones. Where it especially shines is in its structural integrity and rigidity – cast materials don’t bend.

Digital Signal Processing – At the heart of the system is the Digital Signal Processor (DSP). Partnering with Bongiovi Acoustics, our proprietary DSP uses the patented Bongiovi Digital Power Station™ technology. Each MasterCraft boat was tuned by Bongiovi Acoustic engineers to create custom profiles to maximize performance in a way no other system can.

Zone controls - The premium touchscreen packages include the ability to control where and how loud the music is playing through the use of Zone Control. Each zone (Bow, Sub, Helm, Cockpit and Tower) can be independently turned up or down so everyone in the boat can enjoy the music how they want.

Update: Zone Control can be added to 2018 model year boats equipped with the Klipsch Advanced Audio package with an optional dealer installed retrofit kit. Contact your dealer for pricing and installation.

Zone Control is now included on 2019 model year boats equipped with the Klipsch Advanced Audio package.

What is a DSP and what makes properly tuned system?
Our proprietary Digital Signal Processing (DSP) works by creating an audio signal that is dynamically optimized for the application. An optimized audio signal is easier to hear, easier for an amplifier and speakers to reproduce and results in a better overall listening experience.

The DSP creates an audio signal with full dynamic range matched for the system components (speakers/amplifiers) and specific listening application environment.

This in turn allows for higher SPL with less power required from the amplifiers along with specific audio frequency and level reshaping based on playback mode.

Another benefit is increased audio headroom which can then be used to make a recording playback louder in a noisy environment. This is key for setting the soundstage in an unconventional application; like an open air boat running full throttle.

Taking into consideration that human ears pay the most attention to sounds to which they are most sensitive; our DSP solution will optimize the signal so that important sounds stay at a consistent volume without losing their impact or causing unwanted artifacts.

Why are there no adjustment controls on the amplifiers? Can I “tweak” my system?
The Klipsch amplifiers are designed to work as part of a complete system with the Klipsch speakers and the Bongiovi DSP. Your Klipsch system has already been tuned by acoustical engineers to maximize performance in the MasterCraft boat model you purchased. By eliminating user controls (crossover, gains, phase, etc.), you can’t make incorrect adjustments that could degrade performance. In addition, no external controls means the amplifiers are sealed, and unlike the competition, truly made for the marine environment.

The system does include adjustable EQ settings to dial in your tone preferences. In addition, there are profiles in the software to match the system performance to your current activity – drive, tow and chill.

How much power does the system have?
Depending on the package selected; up-to 1650 watts of true RMS power is used to drive the system.

How loud is the Klipsch system?
The Klipsch MasterCraft audio system delivers concert-level performance without the distortion typically associated with “loud” systems. No longer do you have to associate ear pain caused by high-frequency distortion with “loud”. While other boats on the water will blast ear-piercing distortion that makes you wince, you can turn the dial all the way up and enjoy rich, dynamic and CLEAN sound with your Klipsch system!

Can I upgrade the Klipsch system? How?
Depending on the package ordered with your boat, you may be able to upgrade the performance by purchasing a tower speaker package directly through your MasterCraft dealer.

Do I need to update my software?
The DSP will be programmed with the profile that matches your boat and Klipsch audio package selected. No further profiles are needed when using the original configuration. If tower speakers are added or upgraded beyond the original configuration, your dealer will update the DSP profile to support the new tower speaker option chosen.

Can I use third-party/aftermarket tower speakers with the Klipsch system?
The Klipsch system is designed to be used as a complete Klipsch package and tuned as such. No software profiles will be created for third-party components. We cannot comment on how use of a non-Klipsch tower speaker would perform as it was not designed or tested in that manner.

How do I get the most out of my system?
High-fidelity sound systems perform their best when using high-quality audio sources. While you can get by with 87 octane and all-season radials for your minivan on your daily commute, you wouldn’t want to do that with a Ferrari at the track. Same can be said of lower-quality audio gear with low-resolution music – it can get the job done, but you’re not going to really enjoy it.

To get the most out of your Klipsch system, you should try to maximize the quality of the music source. Generally, locally stored music files on a USB drive or streamed from your smart phone via Bluetooth will provide the best sound quality, in that order. However, there can be significant differences in the quality of those files that will impact how they sound.

If you use MP3’s as your file type, you should try to maximize the bit-rate during file conversion to minimize the quality loss (320kbps is the highest bit-rate for MP3). Using a low bit-rate conversion can strip out the low and high-frequency extension, kill the dynamic range and make the music feel flat and lifeless.

A better option than MP3 is to use a lossless audio file type – such as FLAC or ALAC. While the lossless codecs will require more storage, the quality difference is significant. These codecs do a great job at shrinking the file size while maintaining a bit-perfect version of the file, allowing you to hear the music in true CD quality. A new standard for even better-than-CD quality is called Hi-Res Audio (HRA). More and more services and devices are offering HRA tracks for purchase or streaming to provide unmatched music reproduction.

Streaming music from online services has become one of the most popular ways to listen to your favorite songs. Just as there are quality differences between MP3 and FLAC audio files; the audio quality provided by each service provider will vary. Some services provide FLAC quality or even Hi-Res Audio file streaming. Regardless of service used, be sure to check your preferences to ensure you have the highest quality setting selected.

With the Klipsch system, you can either connect a USB drive or stream wirelessly by Bluetooth. Generally, a USB drive containing high quality files will provide the best performance. While the Bongiovi DSP will optimize the signal in real-time to overcome deficiencies in lower-quality audio files, you will still get even better performance when using high-quality source material.

Individual Component Specifications

Model - Description - RMS Power
KMC1PA - 1Ch Amp - 1x350W (Single sub) - 1x650W (Dual sub)
KMC4PA - 4Ch Amp - 4x100W
KMC5PA - 5Ch Amp - 4x100W + 1x250W
KMC8PA - 8Ch Amp - 8x100W

Model - Description - Power Handling (RMS/Max) - SPL @ 1W/1M
KMC7002SAS1B - 7” Air Suspension Coaxial Speaker - (100W / 200W) - 87db
KMC7002SFA1B - 7” Infinite Baffle Coaxial Speaker - (100W / 200W) - 88db
KMC8502SAS1B - 8.5” Air Suspension Coaxial Speaker - (125W / 250W) - 87db
KMC8502SFA1B - 8.5” Infinite Baffle Coaxial Speaker - (125W / 250W) - 88db
KMC7003SK1 - Dual 7” Coax w/5”x5” True Tractrix Horn - (200W / 400W) - 98db
KMC10751SFA1B - 10.75” Infinite Baffle Subwoofer - (350W / 700W) - 87db


Before troubleshooting any functional or performance issues with any part of your audio system, the first step should always be to ensure you have fully charged batteries. Low voltage conditions can negatively affect normal operation of the system.

Because of the real-time processing and boat-to-system tuning, the DSP must have the correct software profile installed to get the full experience and maximum performance of the system. If your system seems to be under-performing when you get your new MasterCraft boat, please first verify you are using high-quality music source material and played directly from a USB drive to rule out any Bluetooth or smart phone issues. If that has already been done, please have your dealer verify the software profile is correct for your boat and Klipsch package. Your dealer will have the ability to access the profile for your boat and re-load it into the DSP.

Another possible scenario of less than ideal performance would be if any of the speakers were wired reverse polarity (creating phase issues with the other speakers). Your dealer can verify the wiring is correct as well.

CantRepeat 09-27-2017 06:17 PM

It's always nice to see vendors supporting the community!!

Mastercraftdave 09-27-2017 06:24 PM

Will Klipsch audio amps be compatible with other audio brands tower speakers (i.e. Wetsounds, exile). If so, will there be software updates that allow the owner the ability to tune the Amps?

What are the power ratings on the individual speakers, tower speakers, and subwoofers?

Will the addition of aftermarket audio void any factory warranty?

bturner2 09-28-2017 08:48 AM

Wow, impressed that you would come here and add to the forum. Welcome.

Now how about looking into retro fits for some of the previous models....... :D

uplandbird 09-28-2017 11:42 AM

Can you help quantify the difference in power and quality between the S80 and S85 tower speakers please? MC wants 4K for the upgrade and before I do it I'd like to know specifics please. Thanks in advance!

cwarndahl 09-28-2017 11:52 AM

Great to see you here! I look forward to watching this thread!

Millertime 09-28-2017 11:58 AM

We have the Klipsch system in our boat, '18 XT22 I have heard it may need a software update, being it was built in June '17. We have the premium audio as well as the 7" twin pods with horn. How would this update affect the system? How can I tell if I have the up to date software?

lobo87 09-28-2017 01:12 PM

I just picked up my '18 NXT20 and I don't know if anybody else ran into this issue but linking the Klipsch stereo to your phone via Bluetooth is not obvious. With the stereo on and switched to Bluetooth, press the connect button (looks like two phones). It should say "Connecting" while in the mode, press and hold the volume button. This will bring it into "Pairing" mode and should show up on your phone. It took my dealer and two others to figure it out as there is no manual for it just yet. Worked perfectly once it was connected though. Great sound!

Millertime 09-28-2017 02:13 PM


Originally Posted by lobo87 (Post 1377845)
I just picked up my '18 NXT20 and I don't know if anybody else ran into this issue but linking the Klipsch stereo to your phone via Bluetooth is not obvious. With the stereo on and switched to Bluetooth, press the connect button (looks like two phones). It should say "Connecting" while in the mode, press and hold the volume button. This will bring it into "Pairing" mode and should show up on your phone. It took my dealer and two others to figure it out as there is no manual for it just yet. Worked perfectly once it was connected though. Great sound!

Have you found the Bluetooth works throughout the boat? I found with ours the Bluetooth would kick out if we went to the back of the boat.

lobo87 09-28-2017 02:37 PM


Originally Posted by Millertime (Post 1377856)
Have you found the Bluetooth works throughout the boat? I found with ours the Bluetooth would kick out if we went to the back of the boat.

I didn't notice a problem but I pretty much just left it in the glove box while we were out. I'm going out tomorrow though and will give it a test.

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