ELS Sound System Puts You 10 Feet From Stardom
by Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor on September 15, 2015
Since our 2015 Acura TLX came with the optional Technology package upgrade, which costs about $4,000, it has a variety of upgrades over a base TLX, such as leather upholstery, added safety features, navigation and a premium Acura ELS Studio sound system.
Of those features, I'd say the sound system is my favorite.
As with other Acura systems, it's developed by Panasonic and tuned by Eliot "ELS" Scheiner, a highly-regarded producer, soundman and audio engineer in the music business.
The system is comprised of 10 speakers and is DTS surround-sound capable. There are two tweeters in the A-pillars, a 3.1-inch driver serving as the center channel speaker, two 3.1-inch drivers in the rear doors, four 6.7-inch midrange speakers (two in the front doors and two in the rear deck) and a rear-deck mounted subwoofer. Listed peak output is 490 watts.
For potential system inputs, there's a CD player, a digital hard drive, radio (regular, HD and satellite), a USB input, an auxiliary input jack, Bluetooth audio, Pandora radio integration and additional streaming possibilities through the AcuraLink (Aha radio) service.
I like the way the system sounds. I'm not going to claim I'm a hardcore audiophile, but in my listening, music played through the ELS system has sounded detailed and accurate. Bass output is modest ? it's not capable of any body-panel-shaking feats ? but the system on the whole is balanced. Overall, it's a nice step up in quality compared to most in-car audio systems.
Brent Romans, Senior Automotive Editor @ 7,845 miles