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method to my madness?
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok, so I currently have the HK system in my '02 330Ci , but i've decided to go all out and upgrade the thing, starting with the amp/speakers. I've got two pairs of Boston Acoustics Pro Series 6.5 components right now, and i've cut adapter rings and mounted the rear woofers already. (These are to be driven by a JL Audio 300/4 amp, more on that shortly). In any case, after mounting the woofers I started to think that maybe i should have just bought coaxials for the rear rather than components. So I'd like any kind person's opinion on the following:

Question 1: Should i continue the work i've done and mount the BA Pro tweeters in the spots where the rear HK mids are now? Or go swap a pair of components for some coaxials?

Question 2: The JL 300/4 amp accepts the balanced-diff inputs coming from the oem head-unit, but only has RCA inputs and no handy-dandy custom connector pigtail. I hate to throw a VEN4 on there when the circuitry is in the amp, but is there a off-the-shelf, _simple_ "4 channel wire -> 4 channel RCA" widget? (yeah, yeah, i could just get the parts and make one myself but i'm lazy :angel: )

Since i'm trying to do an uber-clean (read: unneccesarily picky) install, any and all advice is greatly appreciated. (and yeah, i've read all the "big" pages on the subject) Thanks!

-brad
 

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King of Rear Clunks
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Good luck getting the 6.5s to fit in the front door. I think its possible, but I guarantee it will be a LOT of work. I got specific adapter rings for the car from the UK, and test-fitted an old set of Boston Pro 5.somethings, and they dropped right in (I'm putting Focal Polykevlars in, though).

I'd keep the separates back there, and either find a nice place on the deck for the tweeters or put em in the stock midrange location and set the component's crossover to as far down on tweeter output as it will go (-6db?).

As for the wiring, if you don't wanna cut any wires, you're gonna have to build up some sort of custom wiring harness to plug into the amp plug. I'm working on piecing one together out of other harnesses for other cars that I have lying around the house.

Good luck!
 

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Now with Nano
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are you really that lazy? all you need to do is solder some RCA connectors onto the wires (you may need to extend the wires for your application, thopugh).


NOOOOOOOO!!!! no tweeters behind the driver. the soundstage is up front and tweeters shoeld be in front of the driver. in a perfect world, your mid range and tweeters should be mounted down in the kick panels and aimed more or less up at the motion sensor in the head liner (the traditional dome light spot).

putting high frequencies behind the driver will draw your attention rearward and screw up your soundstage and stereo image. personally, I'd either disconeect all rear speakers except the little 2" in the rear doors or replace all rear speakers with a midrange speaker configured as a bandpass (high frequencies rolled off above ~4kHz and low frequencies rolled off ~100kHz). when i had the a/d/s/ system in my car, I simply disconnected the rear deck speakers and left the 2" rear door speakers connected to the factory amp. the front channel went to the a/d/s/ amp and drove the main speakers and the sub. the fader could then be used to lower the volume of the "rear fill" speakers to merely augment the main front speakers. you want to knock the volume down to one notch below the point where you just start to hear the rear speakers.
 

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Now with Nano
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with 5.25" speakers in the doors and a decent sub, you can run the crossover point at 70hz to 80 hz (the lower you can get away with the better) and you won't miss any sound. when configured properly, you won't eb able to localize the sub. in fact, it will seem like the low frequencies are being emitted from the main stereo pair of speakers.

anyway, good luck!

check out my stereo page and subpages for some write ups I did:
http://www.mindspring.com/~pmbenn/stereo.htm
 

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method to my madness?
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I've talked to a couple of people who've used the 6.5s and was told that, with an adapter ring, they'd fit w/o any surgery needed on the car (the speakers are actually around 5.75" in diameter, and need an adapter ring even to fit in a 160mm hole.) Depth is the only issue i thought about, and again, from what i've been told, i'll be ok. <crossing fingers>

-brad

Kaz said:
Good luck getting the 6.5s to fit in the front door. I think its possible, but I guarantee it will be a LOT of work. I got specific adapter rings for the car from the UK, and test-fitted an old set of Boston Pro 5.somethings, and they dropped right in (I'm putting Focal Polykevlars in, though).

I'd keep the separates back there, and either find a nice place on the deck for the tweeters or put em in the stock midrange location and set the component's crossover to as far down on tweeter output as it will go (-6db?).

As for the wiring, if you don't wanna cut any wires, you're gonna have to build up some sort of custom wiring harness to plug into the amp plug. I'm working on piecing one together out of other harnesses for other cars that I have lying around the house.

Good luck!
 

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King of Rear Clunks
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hamlet said:
I've talked to a couple of people who've used the 6.5s and was told that, with an adapter ring, they'd fit w/o any surgery needed on the car (the speakers are actually around 5.75" in diameter, and need an adapter ring even to fit in a 160mm hole.) Depth is the only issue i thought about, and again, from what i've been told, i'll be ok. <crossing fingers>

-brad

OK, but I've had the door apart and I couldn't figure out how to get even a shallow 160mm in there without hackage. :dunno:
 

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Now with Nano
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another reason that 5.25" speakers would be better up front is that because of the smaller cone size, there more accurate reproduction of voices when using the smaller driver. don't worry about bass, a well integrated sub will address that. besides, some of the high end 5.25" speakers that I've had the opportunity to listen to have had a phenominal amount of bass. I sppek of dynaudio and a/d/s/ specifically. there are others, though.
 

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method to my madness?
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Nah, not really that lazy w/ the RCA connectors--my main inquiry was about the rear speakers. I think i can essentially do what you're saying (in terms of using rear speakers for midrange fill) by using the component woofers in the rear along with a LP xover (on the amp) and the component's HP xover with no tweeter attached.... seems silly to keep the component set if i'm not gonna use the tweets though. I suppose i'm hesitant to simply disconnect all the stuff in the rear, but i'll give that setup a listen once i get the fronts in and amped.

I have a JL 10" sub i was contemplating adding to the system if I'm not pleased with the range of the Boston Pros, but I'm not out to get "thump". With the stock HK subs removed, would the two ~5" holes in the rear deck allow enough bass in for "fill" sound, or would you still suggest porting the rear armrest area?

Thanks for all the info!

-brad
 

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method to my madness?
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
:confused: Hmmm... ok, i suppose that only time will tell when i get the doors open--If there's a problem, i'll go swap out for the 5.5's. Thanks for the heads up though--so much conflicting info on this internet contraption. ;-) i'll be sure to post whether or not the 6.5s fit just as a general "fyi." of course, reading that earlier comment on 5.25's reproducing voices better is yet another item for attention. Learn something every day......

BTW, where'd you order your adapter rings? Just curious 'cause i looked around and ended up getting some ABS sheets and cutting some myself. (note to 31st330ci: told ya' i wasn't _really_ lazy... hehe).

-brad

Kaz said:


OK, but I've had the door apart and I couldn't figure out how to get even a shallow 160mm in there without hackage. :dunno:
 

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Now with Nano
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hamlet said:
Nah, not really that lazy w/ the RCA connectors--my main inquiry was about the rear speakers. I think i can essentially do what you're saying (in terms of using rear speakers for midrange fill) by using the component woofers in the rear along with a LP xover (on the amp) and the component's HP xover with no tweeter attached.... seems silly to keep the component set if i'm not gonna use the tweets though. I suppose i'm hesitant to simply disconnect all the stuff in the rear, but i'll give that setup a listen once i get the fronts in and amped.

I have a JL 10" sub i was contemplating adding to the system if I'm not pleased with the range of the Boston Pros, but I'm not out to get "thump". With the stock HK subs removed, would the two ~5" holes in the rear deck allow enough bass in for "fill" sound, or would you still suggest porting the rear armrest area?

Thanks for all the info!

-brad
if I did another E46 stereo, I'd fire a sub through the arm rest again. I would do a better job of angling it up at the windshield, though, but this is just a minor nit pick. secondly, I would use a sealed enclosure for better bass acruacy.

you can sell the components, can't you. that's why god created ebay and news:rec.audio.car
 

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Now with Nano
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hamlet said:
BTW, where'd you order your adapter rings? Just curious 'cause i looked around and ended up getting some ABS sheets and cutting some myself. (note to 31st330ci: told ya' i wasn't _really_ lazy... hehe).
rings were custom made for my a/d/s/ 5.25" speakers back when I still had them. if you look at my a/d/s/ page, you should be able to make them out in one of the pictures (they're black so they're hard to distinguish from the speaker itself.)
 

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King of Rear Clunks
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hamlet said:

BTW, where'd you order your adapter rings? Just curious 'cause i looked around and ended up getting some ABS sheets and cutting some myself. (note to 31st330ci: told ya' i wasn't _really_ lazy... hehe).

-brad

I found them on UK websites, and had a friend of mine get me a few sets just in case. I was gonna make em myself but I was lazy and my friend was willing to send em to me (well, I had to pay for em). They have extensions on the ears to fit down onto the stock mounting holes and everything. :)

Have 2 sets NIB left for anyone interested.
 

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Traffic Surgeon
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Brad/Hamlet -

Be sure to do a write-up in the DIY section when you get it all worked out! I eventually would like to upgrade my system as well. I've got an aftermarket MB Quart system in a 12 year old Honda that puts the HK to shame. I wish I could snap my fingers and they'd be switched out... :cry: :mad:
 

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Don't leave the two "old" sub opennings open.

You want them sealed, if the sub was made to work in a SEALED trunk, then leave it sealed.

The BASS will find you.
 

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In Mod Heaven
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Kaz said:


I found them on UK websites, and had a friend of mine get me a few sets just in case. I was gonna make em myself but I was lazy and my friend was willing to send em to me (well, I had to pay for em). They have extensions on the ears to fit down onto the stock mounting holes and everything. :)

Have 2 sets NIB left for anyone interested.
I will be getting my car around mid-May and from my sig, you can see what is going into the car. I could definitely use the 6.5" adapter rings. PM me and we can discuss. . .

Good luck on the install! I at status 152 and the car should be done by 4/12. . . hopefully only 1 more month left!! Can't wait to get this system in the car. :thumb:
 

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Hello...
Since this is about car audio, can i change the pace a bit(instead of making a whole new thread?). A few months ago, i was about to get a 330, but had a few financial things i needed to take care fo first. So now, i am going to get the 325(i am 24 years old, i really dont 'need' a 330 yet!).

I am really into car audio........my crappy car now has some rockford fosgate subs, amps, etc. What i am wondering is, should i get the HK package for the 325? What exactly is included in the HK package? For example, if i didnt get the package, would there be mounted tweeters? Is it the same headunit(which i am plannin on not replacing).

Honestly, paying 600 bucks for the HK system seems quite high, considering i could probably install a better sound sytem for around that price.........
 

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Baptizer said:
Honestly, paying 600 bucks for the HK system seems quite high, considering i could probably install a better sound sytem for around that price.........
I disagree. here's an exerpt from my E46 stereo page:

http://www.mindspring.com/~pmbenn/stereo.htm

"You can, of course, order the optional Harman Kardon stereo system from BMW and not hassle with the installation of an aftermarket stereo. In retrospect, that's what I should have done. It definitely does not sound as good as even a mid-fi aftermarket system can be but there's no hassle and it indeed does sound reasonably good even to my spoiled ears. To me, the money is better spent on improving my home theater system. Some have claimed that the HK system is not worth the $675. Personally, I think it is. You get (10) better speakers, a better amp with different crossover points, subwoofers with a small mono amp, some DSP "spatialize" wizardry and speed sensing volume (the latter two features I could do without). To equal this with even the least expensive aftermarket items, you'd have to buy a new head unit (using it's built in amp) and an Bazooka subwoofer. You would easily spend the same $675 to get the same thing yet loose the BMW warranty and steering wheel controls. You can retrofit the HK system after the fact but it is not worth the cost if you order all of the parts new. If you can get the entire system out of another vehicle, it may be worth the effort."
 

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method to my madness?
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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Baptizer said:
Hello...
Since this is about car audio, can i change the pace a bit(instead of making a whole new thread?). A few months ago, i was about to get a 330, but had a few financial things i needed to take care fo first. So now, i am going to get the 325(i am 24 years old, i really dont 'need' a 330 yet!).

I am really into car audio........my crappy car now has some rockford fosgate subs, amps, etc. What i am wondering is, should i get the HK package for the 325? What exactly is included in the HK package? For example, if i didnt get the package, would there be mounted tweeters? Is it the same headunit(which i am plannin on not replacing).

Honestly, paying 600 bucks for the HK system seems quite high, considering i could probably install a better sound sytem for around that price.........
I'd have to say that the HK separates are a significant improvement over the stock system. Depending on how picky you are about your sound, you may want to consider getting the HK system and adding your amp/sub system to it. Makes it a lot easier to return the car to stock, for sure.

From what i understand, buying the HK system gets you the two HK subs, nicely upgraded separates, and the HK amp w/ the dsp function. It does not change the headunit.

In case you're wondering why i wanted to upgrade, my HK subs stopped working and before i could get to the dealer i was bitten by the stereo-upgrade bug. :D oh well, i'm enjoying it!
 
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