Re: Opinion of Subaru's "speaker upgrade"
Good question. Though the answer really is as unique as the person answering it. Many have put in other-label speaker/sound systems in their XVs (including swapping out the head unit) and they would have it no other way. To them, the sound is perfect. Others, have simply upgraded just tweeters and been very happy with that.
If it helps any, I can only attest to what I have upgraded to. Like you, I am a fan of music (as many here know, ol' granny here has more than 40,000 songs in her collection). :-) So, how good music sounds is important to me.
Now, because I tend to lean towards "Subaru or Authorized Subaru parts only, I went with the Kicker system upgrade made specifically for, and endorsed by Subie. I did this because I did not want the headache of custom wiring or cutting in to my car. The Result: Do I love it? Yep! Was it worth the upgrade cost? Absolutely! Have I ever, for one minute wished I had gone with a different system? Nope!
Hope that helps a bit. If you get in to the Kickers, you have a choice of 2 different subs. One installs in the rear hatch area, the other is a hideaway that goes under the front seat. I chose the rear-hatch area as it provided the cleanest sound and has best acoustic sound-bounce back there (hatch space was not an issue for me as I don't store anything back there anyway). Be advised, the Kicker sub is no fool. It will bump you out of the car if you're not careful. LOL. But, you'll know which of your music genre sound better at which base level, you can preset EQs for those and you're set (ol' granny here happens to like bumpin' music anyway) :-)
As you research, think about more than just "how good it sounds", since that's a scale that is different for every human. Instead, *also* think about how the system installs (is it made for Subie plug and play or will it require digging into and re-routing any wiring)? Does it's output mesh well with the stock head unit? Does the new system require you cut in to anything to get speakers to fit or to make sure they don't rattle? If doing custom installs, how much more will that add to the cost? Many here have had much success with all different kinds of system. Check out the board, research those a bit and see what you come up with.
Bottom line... I bet anything you put in is better for your music than not upgrading at all. :-)
Have fun and enjoy.
~~ "We do not inherit the earth... We borrow it from our children" ~~