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Car audio/video (car AV), mobile audio, 12-volt and other terms are used used to describe the sound or video system fitted in an automobile. Such devices aren't necessarily limited to automobiles, and can be used, marketed, or manufactured for marine, aviation, and mass transit. This article focuses on cars as the most common application.
Car audio competitions started in the early 1980s in a quest to find the loudest and/or most outrageous installations. For example, in 1985, Wayne Harris famously modified a 1960 Cadillac Hearse to feature three 24-inch subwoofers as well as eight 12-inch subwoofers. Little consideration was given to sound quality early on, but in the early 1990s, several organizations, including IASCA, began car audio competitions focusing on sound quality. The two styles -- SPL vs. sound quality -- have become almost mutually exclusive. The loudness competitions have become known as dB drag racing.