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View Full Version : What kind of speakers go in the easiest?


jeffinohio
01-07-2004, 06:58 PM
Im looking to put in a good speaker and subsystem into a 2004 330 coupe. What kind of speakers and subwoofer system gives me the most bang for the buck? And how much should I expect to spend for a premium quality sound system since the standard harman/kardon sucks ass? What kind of speakers and system do most people get?

Dr. Phil
01-07-2004, 07:31 PM
Im looking to put in a good speaker and subsystem into a 2004 330 coupe. What kind of speakers and subwoofer system gives me the most bang for the buck? And how much should I expect to spend for a premium quality sound system since the standard harman/kardon sucks ass? What kind of speakers and system do most people get?
It's all about budget :eek: MB Quart, Focal, Boston Pro's were all speakers I listened to before making my decision. I had a certain limit in place so I did not go after anything higher end then these. I opted for MB Premium line components and coaxs for the cabin. The components are a two-way set up (you can do a 3 way but that usually involves some mod work on the door panels) and kept everything inside the car stock looking :)

As for subs, everyone seems to like JL Audio. You can do a low line W0 up to W7 high ends (big price swing here) but remember the higher end subs starve for more power :bigpimp: I tried out all the JLs, Phoenix Gold, MB and Eclipse....I am going with an Eclipse 12" aluminum (almost went titanium but power and $$ made me rethink).

For amps, again JL is popular but I went with Zapco. I like their Symlink set up (firewire type communication) and ability to accept the higher LOC feeds that will come from the OEM head unit.

Bottom line....personal preference and amount of mad $$ you have to spend. Be sure to listen to a lot of different speakers to find the sound that you like the most. :thumbup:

Ajax
01-12-2004, 06:54 AM
BOSTON PRO


:thumbup: :thumbup: :thumbup:

Very happy customer here.

KCLARK
01-16-2004, 07:13 AM
What were the differences in sound that made you pick the MB's over the Focals and Boston Pro's? I too am looking and at getting good quality components speakers but have added Diamonds to the same list you have. I want to use/keep my stock head unit because of the constant use of the steering wheel controls. How did you came across picking the Zapco amp over other brands such as Phoenix Gold, PPI, JL Audio, a/d/s, which from reading are clean quality amps that alot of BMW owners tend to use. I've listened to each of them and they ALL SOUND AMAZING TO ME, so good I cant tell the difference. Whats your take on Zapco vs. the brands I mentioned?

Dr. Phil
01-16-2004, 07:34 AM
What were the differences in sound that made you pick the MB's over the Focals and Boston Pro's? I too am looking and at getting good quality components speakers but have added Diamonds to the same list you have. I want to use/keep my stock head unit because of the constant use of the steering wheel controls. How did you came across picking the Zapco amp over other brands such as Phoenix Gold, PPI, JL Audio, a/d/s, which from reading are clean quality amps that alot of BMW owners tend to use. I've listened to each of them and they ALL SOUND AMAZING TO ME, so good I cant tell the difference. Whats your take on Zapco vs. the brands I mentioned?
As for speakers....the Boston Pros had killer midbass and I was seriously considering them but the vocal seperation was not quite where I wanted it. If I were using them, I would use an ambient tweeter set up (one in pod and one hanging from mid speaker). The Focal's were definitely a bit better then the MB Premiums (not the Qs ;) ) but I decided not to put the extra $250 to them but instead to sub design. The difference was not enough for me to "have" to use them...but as with anything this is a personal decision.

Zapco is not as mainstream as some of the others you mentioned. If I opted for Focal, I was going to use PG since the dealer had them. JL was my original amp of choice but the Zapco's offered a few things I liked....symlink connections, ability to act as its own LOC (since staying OEM right now), the installer I chose preferred them (and I got 10% discount :p ) and there RMS ratings $ for $ was attractive. I do not think you could go wrong with any of the equipment you mentioned.

KCLARK
01-16-2004, 07:40 AM
Wow that was fast, thanks for your response. BTW do you recall the model number of those Focal components you were listening to or think I should consider. Surprised you said that because I was doing a coaxial comparision for my rear deck and wound up buying the Focal 130CA's. I would like to match the sound timbre or better for my front speaker choice.

Dr. Phil
01-16-2004, 07:55 AM
Wow that was fast, thanks for your response. BTW do you recall the model number of those Focal components you were listening to or think I should consider. Surprised you said that because I was doing a coaxial comparision for my rear deck and wound up buying the Focal 130CA's. I would like to match the sound timbre or better for my front speaker choice.
I was looking at 136w compnents as I recall. Their 3 way set up was sick...I would have jumped them but want to keep the cabin looking stock. Now the trunk is a different story :bigpimp:

BigRain
02-14-2006, 01:56 PM
For amps, again JL is popular but I went with Zapco. I like their Symlink set up (firewire type communication) and ability to accept the higher LOC feeds that will come from the OEM head unit.


May I ask how did you connect your OEM high level feed to the Zapco Amp? To my understanding, the SLDIN.T-F takes low level and boost it up for the Amp input. However, since our OEM HU already provides a high level (balance) input end, you can't just connect to SLDIN.T-F end then to the Amp. How did you go about connecting the OEM HU input to the SLDIN.T-F?

Please advise.

el_duderino
02-14-2006, 02:11 PM
You are confusing balanced with high level.

Your car sends low-level balanced into the OEM amp. Use the Zapco with the BTL. Works fine.

el_duderino
02-14-2006, 02:11 PM
Oh, and I recommend looking at DLS and Morel too...

el_duderino
02-14-2006, 02:14 PM
You might want to check this out...

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=119056

BigRain
02-14-2006, 02:18 PM
Oh, and I recommend looking at DLS and Morel too...

Thanks~!!! You're right, stupid me.

The Zapco that I'm looking at comes w/ the warranty card that I can register under my name. Do you think a dealer or Zapco themself might be willing to exchange the SLDIN.T-F w/ the SLDIN.BTL for me? I don't see any good deals for the DLS amps presently available. :p

BigRain
02-14-2006, 02:20 PM
oooh... any suggestion on AMP selection? in this thread:

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/showthread.php?t=132538

el_duderino
02-14-2006, 05:24 PM
The BTL is cheap. You probably want two, also.

I have some coming.

BigRain
02-15-2006, 03:57 AM
The BTL is cheap. You probably want two, also.

I have some coming.

You've got PM. :)

el_duderino
02-15-2006, 08:48 AM
I am getting just enough of them for the amps that are coming in, sorry.

The Zapco web site lists a lot of dealers in NY, and you can buy on their web site too. Click on "stock room".

MMI, INC. dba SOUND CONCEPT
760 N. BEDFORD ROAD
BEDFORD HILLS, NY 10507
914.244.090

HOLLYWOOD SOUNDS
217 S. PLANK RD.
NEWBURGH, NY 12550
845.566.5156

CANAL AUDIO LTD
353 CANAL ST.
NEW YORK, NY 10013
212.941.7301

25TH ST AUDIO DESIGN SYSTEMS

255 10TH AVE.

NEW YORK, NY. 10001

212.255.8700

AVENUE SOUND
260 EAST MAIN STREET
PATCHOGUE, NY 11772
631.447.7355

ALPHA STEREO LLC.
57 SMITHFIELD BLVD
PLATTSBURGH, NY 12901
518.561.2822

BigRain
02-15-2006, 10:32 AM
I'll check up then` oops.... I've since relocated to CA 3 yrs ago. I guess I should have updated my profile there. :p

BigRain
02-15-2006, 11:02 AM
Well.... what do you know! I called up 4 Zapco dealers here and none of them's got the SLDIN.BTL available in their price sheet!!! One even quoted me like $89! Mind me ask how much you bought it for? Maybe I should buy it thru out-state and mail over.

el_duderino
02-15-2006, 11:44 AM
New price sheet in Dec... MSRP on the sheet is $39.

What part of Cali?

BigRain
02-15-2006, 11:56 AM
New price sheet in Dec... MSRP on the sheet is $39.

What part of Cali?

I'm in NorthCal, Davis, to be exact. Can you tell me which shop in OR you got it from? maybe I'll just order from them.

Also, since I only have 1 set of components up front, 1 set of subs in the rear, does this mean there's really no point for me to use two BTL? Just tab the rear signal from the HU altogether and I can always tune down the fader by lowering the BASS setting from the HU?

2 more Q's.

1) can I cut off the RCA plugs off the SLDIN.t-f and use the lines as a SLDIN.btl? are the mechanism the same in the box?
2) You said that our cars have "low level balanced signal output" from the HU. So, can I use a cheaper Line out converter (e.g. peripheral, pac), to maybe say the REAR input signal of and use the t-f, and then only buy 1 BTL to use for the front inputs?

BmW745On19's
02-15-2006, 02:31 PM
I have an MB Quart/Spyder Sub/ and McIntosh amp in the porsche. Very good sounding set up, a bit pricy though I must add.

el_duderino
02-15-2006, 03:01 PM
I AM a shop in oregon.

Zapco is in Modesto - just call them!

BigRain
02-15-2006, 03:29 PM
I AM a shop in oregon.

Zapco is in Modesto - just call them!

I already did.... direct from them $45. No shop here around me has it. soooo stupid.... I called up 5 shops and they haven't even heard of it.

el_duderino
02-15-2006, 04:20 PM
Well, Zapco is pretty militant on mail sales... call up Zapco, tell them you can't find a dealer that has one, they'll find you someone that orders them! Nice people...

stylinexpat
02-18-2006, 09:38 AM
If you want the best sounding system in your car, try this out. Leave the stock system in your car and upgrade all your peakers to MB Quartz. Upgrade them to the second best ones. The first best ones will require an amplifier to get the sound quality out of them. You will be amazed at how good your system will sound after.:thumbup:

z3-007
02-19-2006, 08:56 PM
Infinity and Polk audio make very good speakers that are easily installed due to their shallow basket.....as far as bass the Infinity bass link is a popular item I sell at work espeacially if you looking to save space.

z3-007
02-19-2006, 08:56 PM
Infinity and Polk audio make very good speakers that are easily installed due to their shallow basket.....as far as bass the Infinity bass link is a popular item I sell at work espeacially if you looking to save space.

z3-007
02-19-2006, 08:57 PM
wow that was a repeat......um as far as price the BassLink runs around $300 and a good set of components will go for $200...as far as coaxils they run $100