Thursday, July 03, 2003
Look Ma! No brains! Ever since there have been car stereos, there has been people willing to spend ridiculous amounts of money on them. When I was attending Helix High School, Matt Sobke spent about $3,000 on his car stereo system. As if that amount of money wasn't ridiculous enough, the car that he put the stereo system in was a Ford Pinto station wagon. Orange. With wood paneling.
Well, stupidity has reached an whole new level.
Troy Irving's 18-year-old Dodge Caravan has a heck of a sound system: 72 amplifiers -- you got it, 72 -- and 36 big 16-volt batteries to put out the 130,000 watts of power needed to rumble his nine 15-inch subwoofers.
To put that into perspective, the most powerful production-car audio I know of is the $230,000+ 2003 Aston Martin Vanquish's 1,200-watt system. Irving carries $80,000 worth of audio alone, in a vehicle that is worth, admittedly, slightly less than the Maybach. Must be fun to ride down Main Street with the windows rolled down, right?
Not really. At a curb weight of about 10,000 pounds, the Caravan is basically undrivable. There is virtually no room for a driver, and even less for a passenger.
"We need more batteries, but that's all the room we have," Irving gripes. But he can at least sit in his driveway and listen to music, yes? Actually, no. Irving's audio system can't play music. It's designed to play a single frequency -- 74 Hz -- very loud. Irving, you see, is a dB drag racer.
Matt Sobke's looking more sane every day.