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I am happy with the 6x9s, they have better bass than the 6.5's but won't come anywhere near what a sub could do. I am considering adding a sub at this point (6 years later), but am still on the fence as we really don't crank the tunes on the boat much since it is usually full of family and friends. Maybe if I had a teen?
I put the Amp by the battery for pretty simple reasons....running 2 power lines up to the storage locker was going to be a lot more expensive than just running an RCA cable and a remote power cable. I bought an "add an Amp" kit on Ebay that came with a 20' RCA, and most car Stereos end up with amps in their trunks and a lot more electronic interference in them than a boat....so I figured I'd give it a shot and if there was interference I could swap the location. Haven't had any. Also, I think the amp is more out of the way there, and easier for me to make minor adjustments to than in the storage compartment.
And you can't ask to many questions! Asking questions is what the board is for!!!