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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
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  #151  
Old 10-09-2011, 07:03 PM
crenninger crenninger is offline
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Mein Auto: '04 X3 3.0i
All Done, Thank you everldr for the suggestion, improvement is dramatic, 100% worth the $92 invested. Ghosh... I almost don;t regret my Limited 4runner with JBL system (10 speakers) that was an awesome sounds for me,

the X3 with Alpine SPS410 is close to it... I can live with it.

Regarding the wiring, my car had the same color on each side for front and back
using the info below here is what I found:

left and right have the same color code.

Front : Yellow-Red + Yellow/Brown -
Rear: Yellow-Black + Yellow/Brown -

Thanks all for the help! now I can drive with good music until I upgrade my head unit for the Kenwood KIV-BT901 which will give me bluetooth, MP3 and backup camera in a 1DIn Unit.

probably to be done in ~6mths.
I'll update the post once I do it.

thanks
christian
Quote:
Originally Posted by adri View Post
Hi Crenninger,

My Car is a Right Hand drive (UK/Australian version) and these are the colors I have found so far

Front Right: Yellow-Red + Yellow/Brown -
Front Left: Blue-Red + Blue/Brown -

Rear Right: Yellow-Black + Yellow/Brown -
Rear Left: Yellow-Purple + Yellow/Grey -

I have a feeling that in the Left Hand Drive(USA) versions the Left and Right side colors are inverted!

I yet do not know what colors I will find in the Subs under the chairs, even though they work with front fader. I also do not know if these would have been crossovered at all by cutting any high frequencies.

Hope this helps,
Adri
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  #152  
Old 10-09-2011, 07:20 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Glad you like it. People don't really understand how poor the BMW system is until they change out part or all of it.

They thnk that when you suggest such a thng it is so you can have Boomcha Boomcha Boom.

Now I'm not saying its not fun to really crank it up once in a while, but clarity is the real reason for most of my changes. Plus, its fun.
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  #153  
Old 10-09-2011, 07:43 PM
crenninger crenninger is offline
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I won't do amps, I never do. But head unit yes, to get extra features and a lot less money than BMW parts and more features
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  #154  
Old 10-09-2011, 08:37 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by crenninger View Post
I won't do amps, I never do. But head unit yes, to get extra features and a lot less money than BMW parts and more features

Amps and an interface are actually easier than a H/U believe me. You may want to reconsider.

An in line processor basically intersects the speaker level output of your H/U. You then take its output to an amp and from the amp back to the speakers.

Never have to change the H/U so things look all the same and steering controls remain intact with no long cables.
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  #155  
Old 10-15-2011, 08:05 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Audio Tidbits

A small update.

Today after three days of rain I finally had some time to do some R & D, or retro-engineering would be more proper.

I have opened the door panels so many times that I can now do it in about 15 minutes per door.

First thing I wanted to confirm myself, The basic sound system (business) fron doors has a small tweeter and 4 in driver. It is 4 ohms. It says so on the speaker and I tested it using a Fluke 77 series III Multi-meter as well as an old fashion Simpson. The back doors are just a single driver in each door.

The mid-bass drivers are 2 ohms (the ones under the seats).

I put the original speakers back in the front doors and left the Alpine's in the back doors so I could do A-B comparsions.

I used two Shure beta 58 mics and a tascam multi channel recorder. I then used Adobe Audition professional audio editing software to check the frequency response.

The abridged results are this:

The stock speakers are technically inferior to the Alpines (and probably anything after market) as I suspected.

Stock speakers can not reproduce decent highs over 14kHZ and lows below 800Hz.

They also cannot reproduce real stereo imaging dead center above the arm rest console, which should be the sweet spot. Subjectively I can hear the left channel seperate from the right channel, which is great if you listen to everything in mono, but not if you like any music that was recorded in stereo after 1962, Lol.

I left them in today to run various types of music and speech through. Wow, can't wait to get them back out. Yikes they are bad.

If you want the details I am happy to share them with you.

Also, learned some good things to remember when removing the door panels besides the obvious. Always start to remove the wood arm facia from underneath and gently work the pry towards the middle at a slow straight line up the length of the arm, that is were the clips are.

A BIG CAVEAT HERE

X3oiler was nice enough to take the constructive criticism to pm's but I don't mind good input and admitting there can be problems. He stated that my suggested method could cause the veneer to crack. Actually, the first install I had was done by a "Pro" and he cracked and had to replace my wood veneer.

FIRST - NEVER USE METAL PRY TOOLS. Use GLASS Fiber or NYLON...SECOND....BE CAREFUL AND PATIENT.

I recommend doing the back doors first because hey if you do mess up not as many will see it.

I can also confirm that the brown striped wire is the common ground to each speaker.

Hope these little tid bits help folks.

Feel free to ask questions and add to the mix, and although I have technical data to back it up sound is subjective and if you are happy with your sound then I will do my best to keep my mouth shut unless you ask.
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Last edited by Evlengr; 10-16-2011 at 11:10 PM.
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  #156  
Old 10-16-2011, 10:28 AM
rwhitman rwhitman is offline
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front door tweeters

Evlengr,

Can you elaborate on what you did with the front tweeters when you replaced the 4 inch drivers with the Alpines? Thanks,

Robert
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  #157  
Old 10-16-2011, 06:22 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rwhitman View Post
Evlengr,

Can you elaborate on what you did with the front tweeters when you replaced the 4 inch drivers with the Alpines? Thanks,

Robert
Yup, plain and simple. Didnt use them. Just disconnected the wire and taped it down. They are so bright they create an unnatural sibilance (that Ssss sound you hear when someone talks to close to a mic).
The tweeters in the Alpines are much more natural sounding and don't give me a headache after prolonged use.

Doing some more R & D this week and going to try to get an exact maximum depth measurement. Not that easy as the only way to do it is to put the door panels back on with no speaker. Then going to take a small straight wire and push it through the mesh opening until it touches the back of the inner door, subtract the difference of how thick the door panel is and voila. Easier said then done. Needs to be done so we can know what we can put in the doors
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Last edited by Evlengr; 10-16-2011 at 06:28 PM.
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  #158  
Old 10-18-2011, 01:25 AM
deafwish deafwish is offline
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Following some advice from one of Australia's top Car Audio designers (FHRX Studios), I ended up sealing the under-seat enclosures & Dynamatting them.
The supposed ported enclosure the stock speakers are in, is a joke. It has 2 openings that could not possibly be tuned.
The supposed port does not go in to the B pillar, as there is sound insulating foam there.
Having a small, sealed enclosure should also assist in their power handling - when amplified.
Midbass sounds far more accurate (less boomy) in the sealed enclosures and I've fitted a pair of inductors which has removed the high-end superbly (thanks Jim!).
FYI - my X3 has 6.5" midbass - not 8"! The top looks 8" but the woofer itself is a 6.5"!
It's sounding pretty darn reasonable now, with the staging back up just above the centre of the dash (inductors worked wonders with this) - just need to sort out the loud mid's with some more EQ...






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  #159  
Old 11-16-2011, 01:11 PM
alexsih alexsih is offline
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Question to Evlengr re: L6i

Hi EE,

I saw your reference drawing recommending an L6i in-between the HU and the PDX5, do you think I can replace the L6i with an AudioControl EQX/EQL?

What I am seeking advise on is that EQL/EQX both have speaker(hi-level) inputs, or do I need the summing function of the L6i before feeding the EQ[LX] before PDX5.
Actually, come to think of it, since the PDX5 already has crossovers, maybe the EQX is superfluous.

Ideally, I'd like the least number of components, so I want to know if EQL can replace L6i or I need both at minimum to get the eq function.

In other words:

HU-->L6i-->PDX5

or which of the following:

HU-->L6i-->EQL-->PDX5
HU-->L6i-->EQX-->PDX5
HU-->EQX-->PDX5
HU-->EQL-->PDX5

Thanks for your advise and all your documentation that you have collected here

Alex

Last edited by alexsih; 11-16-2011 at 01:51 PM.
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  #160  
Old 11-16-2011, 04:56 PM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexsih View Post
Hi EE,

I saw your reference drawing recommending an L6i in-between the HU and the PDX5, do you think I can replace the L6i with an AudioControl EQX/EQL?

What I am seeking advise on is that EQL/EQX both have speaker(hi-level) inputs, or do I need the summing function of the L6i before feeding the EQ[LX] before PDX5.
Actually, come to think of it, since the PDX5 already has crossovers, maybe the EQX is superfluous.

Ideally, I'd like the least number of components, so I want to know if EQL can replace L6i or I need both at minimum to get the eq function.

In other words:

HU-->L6i-->PDX5

or which of the following:

HU-->L6i-->EQL-->PDX5
HU-->L6i-->EQX-->PDX5
HU-->EQX-->PDX5
HU-->EQL-->PDX5

Thanks for your advise and all your documentation that you have collected here

Alex
Sorry I know the above is serious but have you tried to read it out loud, acronym city :-)
Have not had such a good chuckle for some time.
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  #161  
Old 11-16-2011, 05:08 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Not at my desk atm. Will take a closer look tomorrow and get back to you. I believe they make a component that incorporates both a para-metric EQ and crossover for low mid and high

Sent from my DROIDX
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  #162  
Old 11-17-2011, 07:47 PM
AlanLX3 AlanLX3 is offline
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I finally did some upgrades on my wife's 2005 X3 this last weekend and found a couple of resources on youtube quite worthwhile for how to open up the door panels for speaker installs:





These instructions were a bit short for my wife's 2005 model as there are also screws at the back of the door opener assembly but everything else was a workable tutorial on how to take the door apart. I will leave aside the attitude of the "I am so good at this I forgot some details" dude narrating the video but some reading this thread might find the visuals on pulling the panels useful. I certainly did.

Another one for opening up the area around the radio:



In my case I did use the Bavarian Soundwerks speakers and added an Alpine KTP-445 inline amp to our existing Alpine iDA-X300 HU and pretty much smothered the backsides of the door panels with dynamat while I had it open. I already had replaced the under seat subwiffers (sic) with SWS-8's powered by a 300W Focal mono amp and the end result is far more passable for something I can listen to on the road compared to where we started from. Good solid bass response from an honest subwoofer would really help but my wife refuses to give up even an inch of space in the back when it comes to her cargo space.
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  #163  
Old 11-18-2011, 10:13 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Haven't forgotten. Sat night is research and development night.
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  #164  
Old 11-19-2011, 10:32 AM
ROM3000 ROM3000 is offline
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Thanks for posting the links to those videos. They'll come in handy.
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  #165  
Old 11-19-2011, 08:10 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Aural Excitement

Alexish, I would go with the EQX.

It seems to cover the full gambit. In fact I wasnt aware of that model and may pick one up when I get my new toy.

This is perfect for keeping the original head unit and then converting over to several amps to feed a 3 way set up. If you want I will come up with a rough diagram for you and post it for all?

IE:

Full range - doors
Mid bass - under seats
Sub - rear hatch area

The pdx to feed full range and mono sub and another simple amp to feed mid bass which you could do mono or stereo. I chose stereo as there is enough seperation in musical output in the 125Hz- 800 Hz to hear the difference.

How you tune it and what speakers you use I can only tell you what I like. And hearing is like finger prints. No two people are the same.

ps. jealous of the video as I have never had the time to do it. I just put in a new set of SPS-410's today and they sound great. yeah yeah I blew the sps-400's I had in there, but Sonicelectronix replaced them under warranty. Very Cool.
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Last edited by Evlengr; 11-19-2011 at 08:12 PM.
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  #166  
Old 11-23-2011, 11:14 PM
alexsih alexsih is offline
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Eqx

Hi EE,

I've used the EQX a long time ago in the late 80s. It's a neat piece. I fed it with a pink noice generator and used the EQ to get as close to flat as I can but bumped up the low end as the lows tend to get drowned out by road noise.

What I'd like to know, is the spkr out from the e83 head unit full range, because I think the EQX mainly has a pair of spkr inputs and probably not a summing function as lc6i. Do you know.

I'd love to see your diagram on how you would wire this.

I thought I read somewhere that there was a wee amp that comes stock to drive the mid bass, so I'd leave that alone if I can to conserve resources (aka money), and just feed the front or rear spkr level to the EQX. a niggling feeling behind my head wants to use the lc6i to clean up the signals to feed the EQX irregardless, but the pocketbook is objecting.

alex

Last edited by alexsih; 11-23-2011 at 11:21 PM.
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  #167  
Old 11-26-2011, 06:39 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by alexsih View Post
Hi EE,

I've used the EQX a long time ago in the late 80s. It's a neat piece. I fed it with a pink noice generator and used the EQ to get as close to flat as I can but bumped up the low end as the lows tend to get drowned out by road noise.

What I'd like to know, is the spkr out from the e83 head unit full range, because I think the EQX mainly has a pair of spkr inputs and probably not a summing function as lc6i. Do you know.

I'd love to see your diagram on how you would wire this.

I thought I read somewhere that there was a wee amp that comes stock to drive the mid bass, so I'd leave that alone if I can to conserve resources (aka money), and just feed the front or rear spkr level to the EQX. a niggling feeling behind my head wants to use the lc6i to clean up the signals to feed the EQX irregardless, but the pocketbook is objecting.

alex
The speakers under the front seat are really not that bad. Its the amp that is crud. So I wouldn't cost cut there. I powered them with a seperate Alpine until I got the Boston Acoustic 10 inch and that is when I did the three way crossover set up. Mind you I am using an Alpine HU.

I am not sure what the output of the e83 is as and to test it I would have to bench it with a 12 volt and set up a test rig. Sorry, but house is on the market and making a mess is not an option right now.
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  #168  
Old 12-26-2011, 11:30 PM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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I have had the Earthquake SWS-8X's sitting ready for install for some time and finally got round to it. They dropped right in - no dremmel work was required ie there are no protrusions in my housing like in the example threads on this topic. Just for the heck of it I ran them from the standard head unit but no good - even with maximum bass boost in the head unit. They are 4 ohm like the 6 inchers I removed but sensitivity is way down as I kinda expected.

So I installed the Focal Solid 2 amp I had also bought. Cripes what a difference. I have a good hint now what is possible. The Focal is running at near minimum gain and low pass filtered at 150Hz seems the best balance to date. I need to listen to the new setup for a while - see what else needs to be done.
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  #169  
Old 12-27-2011, 02:41 AM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by x3oiler View Post
I have had the Earthquake SWS-8X's sitting ready for install for some time and finally got round to it. They dropped right in - no dremmel work was required ie there are no protrusions in my housing like in the example threads on this topic. Just for the heck of it I ran them from the standard head unit but no good - even with maximum bass boost in the head unit. They are 4 ohm like the 6 inchers I removed but sensitivity is way down as I kinda expected.

So I installed the Focal Solid 2 amp I had also bought. Cripes what a difference. I have a good hint now what is possible. The Focal is running at near minimum gain and low pass filtered at 150Hz seems the best balance to date. I need to listen to the new setup for a while - see what else needs to be done.
Once again I am vindicated. Keep telling folks that this sound system in our X3's sells the consumer short.

Now throw in a small processor that lets you tweek for frequency roll off and some time and you will wonder why you waited so long.

Did you take any pics? I ask because DW and your post indicate 6 inch speakers, but I know I measured correctly and they are 8 in mine. The other interesting point is the mid subs BMW supplied me where rated at 2 ohms. Even though the door are 4 ohms.
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  #170  
Old 12-27-2011, 02:34 PM
deafwish deafwish is offline
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Hi x3oiler,
Good work, mate - I'm keen for a demo!
Did you keep them in the OEM ported box?
If so, I'd certainly be using a sub sonic filter around 30+Hz - if the Solid 2 has one.
Probably get less chuffing noise, too...
X2 on pictures!
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  #171  
Old 12-27-2011, 07:25 PM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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The existing sub look like they might be 8 inch until you turn them over, cheating swines.




The EarthQuakes drop right in with no modifications. Note no plastic ridges where the SWS need to sit.





Clearance for cone extension might be an issue but as I will driving them from 50W RMS only I doubt the cone will extend the 1.25 inch required to hit the metal supports over the cavity - and I doubt I am even hitting them with 50W. With what I can get out of them in the current un-tuned state - there is really no need for any other subs - but personal taste I guess.

I fabricated a timber mount for the AMP that bolts down using the trailer light module lugs. The cut outs are to give and much free air as possible for cooling in such a confined space.





The speaker wiring is not heavy duty - but again - 50w RMS is all I am using.

The FOCAL does not have a subsonic filter just a selectable high pass or low pass or all range switch and the cutoff adjustment for m50 to 150 Hz. I am running low pass at 150Hz at present. I selected the focal as I am running high level input and auto switch on using the high level input - less wiring to run.

Evlengr, I would like to play with a sound processor but as I am using high level inputs I suspect I have little scope here. If you have any recommendations that will using high level inputs please advise.

Deafwish, I am using the stock cavity - I have not blocked the ports . . . yet.

To do. Will probably end up running the AMP in all pass and using it to drive the subs via a 600mH inductor and the front doors speakers via the stock in line capacitor leaving the rears running from the existing head unit.

For those considering it - there is really no need to upgrade the rear door speakers if you have the stock business CD - save some money. The wiring in the car means that the subs are in parallel with the front speakers only so to get any base in the stock system you will running with the fader set to front most of the time anyway. ie rear doors speakers on low level for "fill" only.
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  #172  
Old 12-27-2011, 07:56 PM
deafwish deafwish is offline
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Well done, Jim!
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  #173  
Old 12-30-2011, 12:45 AM
x3oiler x3oiler is offline
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It gets better. Vacation time is tinker time :-)

Dynamatted the under seat sub enclosures to death and blocked the ports. Much much better.

Removed the capacitors that are in series with the front speakers - caps are in the side storage in the trunk wrapped in foam btw.

At full head unit volume the bass now overpowers the Alpine 410s. ie audible distortion in bass from the poor little blighters.

Added the capacitors back but increased them to 300uF (bipolar cross over caps) to get a low frequency roll off about where the under seat subs are cutting in. Can now run at full head unit volume with no distortion and no reverb. Very crisp bass with good punch to the midriff. Heck of a difference to stock.

Summary to date:
  • Replace the front door speakers with Alpine 410s (not the rear - leave as stock)
  • Replace the under seat sub with earthquake SWS-8X (4 ohm)
  • Dynamat the enclosures and seal the ports (with dynamat)
  • Add focal solid 2 amp in the hidden area under the floor in the trunk to run the subs. Use the high level speaker lines from the stock subs as input to get auto power on/off. Set to low pass with rollofff at 150 Hz. Set to approx 25% gain.
  • Replace the capacitors in series with the front door speakers with 300uF crossover caps - caps are located in the side access hatch in the trunk.

I have ordered an Alpine PXE650 for further trimming. Will be interesting. e.g. will need another 4 channel amp to run the front door speakers and the rear door speakers to be able to use the PXE to best effect.
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Last edited by x3oiler; 12-30-2011 at 12:47 AM. Reason: typo - always typos no matter how much proof reading
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  #174  
Old 12-31-2011, 07:13 AM
elevatorguy925 elevatorguy925 is offline
Sanity is over rated
Location: In my own world
 
Join Date: Nov 2011
Posts: 89
Mein Auto: Silver 2006 BMW X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by x3oiler View Post
The existing sub look like they might be 8 inch until you turn them over, cheating swines.




The EarthQuakes drop right in with no modifications. Note no plastic ridges where the SWS need to sit.





Clearance for cone extension might be an issue but as I will driving them from 50W RMS only I doubt the cone will extend the 1.25 inch required to hit the metal supports over the cavity - and I doubt I am even hitting them with 50W. With what I can get out of them in the current un-tuned state - there is really no need for any other subs - but personal taste I guess.

I fabricated a timber mount for the AMP that bolts down using the trailer light module lugs. The cut outs are to give and much free air as possible for cooling in such a confined space.





The speaker wiring is not heavy duty - but again - 50w RMS is all I am using.

The FOCAL does not have a subsonic filter just a selectable high pass or low pass or all range switch and the cutoff adjustment for m50 to 150 Hz. I am running low pass at 150Hz at present. I selected the focal as I am running high level input and auto switch on using the high level input - less wiring to run.

Evlengr, I would like to play with a sound processor but as I am using high level inputs I suspect I have little scope here. If you have any recommendations that will using high level inputs please advise.

Deafwish, I am using the stock cavity - I have not blocked the ports . . . yet.

To do. Will probably end up running the AMP in all pass and using it to drive the subs via a 600mH inductor and the front doors speakers via the stock in line capacitor leaving the rears running from the existing head unit.

For those considering it - there is really no need to upgrade the rear door speakers if you have the stock business CD - save some money. The wiring in the car means that the subs are in parallel with the front speakers only so to get any base in the stock system you will running with the fader set to front most of the time anyway. ie rear doors speakers on low level for "fill" only.
I have replaced the door speakers with the Alpine sps-410's and added a powered sub.
Do you think the stock amp would drive the earthquakes?
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  #175  
Old 01-02-2012, 05:18 PM
Bufalo Bufalo is offline
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Location: Pennsylvania
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Posts: 31
Mein Auto: 2007 X3
Anyone ever do true measurements of rear clearance on the front speakers? Crutchfield has Boston SE45's on sale right now, and if they fit, I'm making the move. I've had BA speakers in most of my cars, and I'd love to do the same in my recently acquired '07 X3. I like the way those Earthquake subs fit right into the stock "enclosures," I think I'll be doing a simple system of four 4" coaxes and a pair of those 8's running low midbass and semi-sub. Should be fine as an upgrade over stock, which I've quickly grown to dislike!
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