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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
First post so forgive the noobishness. I have done a search but unable to find a directly related answer to my situation.

I recently acquired a 1983 Chevy Caprice station wagon with the original Delco stereo. It had only one of four speakers. (I have no idea what happened to the other three.) I ended up replacing all four with new 4x6" speakers, and they sound fine. However, until this morning, I knew nothing of impedance. I have since learned that GM radios of that era all used 8 ohm speakers, and MUST use 8 ohm speakers or risk burning up the electronics.

I looked up the specs of the speakers I installed, and they are 4 ohm. I then looked for 8 ohm 4x6" speakers. They don't seem to exist.

I chatted with tech support at Crutchfield. The guy suggested I connect an amp, then I can use whatever speakers I want. So I am trying to figure out what's involved. He recommended something like this: Sony XMS400D

So my questions:
  • Are 8-ohm 4x6" speakers available from anywhere?
  • Will using an amp eliminate the risk of burning up my 8-ohm radio?
  • If I use an amp, what's the easiest/most straightforward way to connect it to the speaker output of my current radio? I'd like to avoid cutting wires if at all possible. Are wiring connection adaptors available that would allow me to plug right into my radio and then connect to the amp?
Thanks for any and all advice.
 

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Most 90s Gm cars used 8-10ohm speakers. You can find them in junkyard. If you don't crank up the volume the 4ohm should not burn the head unit. The head unit will be overstressed only at high power levers.
 

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Another option would be to replace the factory radio with something newer. Most any powered stereos will support the 4ohm 4x6 speakers.

I miss those big body Caprice Classics, Buick LeSabres, Olds, etc. My first car was 85 LeSabre Limited Collectors Edition 2-door. Great memories.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Another option would be to replace the factory radio with something newer. Most any powered stereos will support the 4ohm 4x6 speakers.

I miss those big body Caprice Classics, Buick LeSabres, Olds, etc. My first car was 85 LeSabre Limited Collectors Edition 2-door. Great memories.
Yeah I thought about that, but trying to keep this thing mostly stock -- it's a project car.
 

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You could double up the number of 4-ohm speakers, and wire each pair in series for an 8-ohm load per pair.
Of course finding space for more speakers may be an issue.

If it were me, I’d just go with an amp so I can feel safe pumping it up too if desired (and/or an aftermarket HU, but that may ruin the look depending on your goals).
 

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I wouldnt worry about it if you are keeping the factory deck. For an 83 caprice, they should be a quick find in a junk yard if something happens. In all honesty, I would go just grab a deck from walmart or the like and keep moving especially since you are only replacing the 4 x 6s.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
If it were me, I’d just go with an amp so I can feel safe pumping it up too if desired (and/or an aftermarket HU, but that may ruin the look depending on your goals).
That's what I'd prefer also, since I don't want to have to uninstall and return the 4x6 speakers I spent all weekend installing. Is there an easy way to hook the speaker outs from the existing factory radio to an amp? Not sure if they make male adaptors to connect to older Delco radios. I've found the female wiring adaptor (to connect the amp to the speaker harnesses) but not the other way around to connect the amp to the radio...
Metra 70-1677-1 Receiver Wiring Harness
 

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Besides metra, scosche has equivalent plugs:

Replacement Harness | Factory Stereo Replacement | General Motors (scosche.com)

GM Power/4 Speaker Connector | Speaker Connector | 1978 - 1987 (scosche.com)

I'd just cut wires and and install amp. So, above connecters wouldn't be needed for a splice and dice affair. Since the headunit does not see the speakers, and only sees the amp, you will reduce the risk of head unit failure. Enjoy your Sony amp. And, be careful with volume as 45w can eat 4x6 speakers.

https://www.mouser.com/datasheet/2/398/SPKA.46.8.B-1623687.pdf
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·

Besides metra, scosche has equivalent plugs:

Replacement Harness | Factory Stereo Replacement | General Motors (scosche.com)

GM Power/4 Speaker Connector | Speaker Connector | 1978 - 1987 (scosche.com)

I'd just cut wires and and install amp. So, above connecters wouldn't be needed for a splice and dice affair. Since the headunit does not see the speakers, and only sees the amp, you will reduce the risk of head unit failure. Enjoy your Sony amp. And, be careful with volume as 45w can eat 4x6 speakers.

https://www.mouser.com/datasheet/2/398/SPKA.46.8.B-1623687.pdf
Thanks! That reverse connector is exactly what I had been looking for (and strangely was unable to find in my own searching). Ordered one to plug into the headunit and one to plug the amp into the speaker harnesses. Should be delivered tomorrow.
 
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