View Single Post
      08-12-2012, 12:33 PM   #1
Technic
Lieutenant General
 
Technic's Avatar
 
Drives: 2012 E92 M3, 2014 528i
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Ft Lauderdale, Florida

Posts: 11,037
iTrader: (17)

Garage List
2004 M3  [0.00]
Notes on a 2011 328i with HiFi (8-speakers/OEM amp) to XD600/6 and UP-222

My sister asks what can be done with her HiFi system, that it is lacking clarity and some "punch". However, this is a lease, there's not that much money to invest and she does not have the time to install anything.

Well, the HiFi harness, a XD600/6 that was laying round in my garage (Part I), the CDT Upstage system (Part II) and full 100% PnP and OEM reversible will all do just fine...

The before trunk shot...


The OEM amp and bracket...


The OEM battery connection -50A fuse/holder and distribution block connector and housing (unused double slot with metal blades inside available in this particular case)...


OEM amp removed, and install Part I done: XD600/6 wired to HiFi harness and ready to be plugged in and installed -subconnectors show in photo are for install Part II...




OEM amp ground terminal used...


Then Part II - CDT Upstage UP-222 install...


Run center tweeters cable from dash to trunk using pre-made PnP cable...


Use wire "fisher"...




Run cable under center console towards trunk area...




Connect pre-mounted Upstage tweeters to cable and install on OEM center speaker area (OEM grill added and not shown for OEM look and fuctionality)...




Add new center Upstage tweeters wiring to OEM amp connector...


Plug Upstage crossover modules to pre-made subconnectors in HiFi harness...




Mount Upstage modules and XD600/6 amp with professional Velcro (no drilling, no permanent changes)...


OEM trunk trim re-installed...


The after trunk shot...


Notes:

Part I - to test the effectiveness of the XD600/6 as the direct replacement of the OEM amp, the HiFi harness was modified with a sub connector in the front speaker wiring. The sub connector purpose was to be able to be unplugged to add the Upstage tweeter system later and compare the before and after difference in the audio upgrade.

Part I results were quite significant...

With the XD600/6 settings at min gain for front and rear channels, 9 o'clock gain for underseat woofers (7 o'clock is minimum), HP at 135Hz for front and rear speakers (that is 27 clicks on the frequency knobs) and LP at 174Hz for underseat woofers (30 clicks), bass and midbass were louder, deeper, and surprisingly clean and not forced/clipped. This was expected in the sense that we went from 25W and 40W max to 200W max on the mids and underseat woofers respectively. The logical question would be, will the OEM speakers blow with so much power increase? The answer would be, I do not know.

What I do know is that the bass adjustment was kept at center and my sister needed only a nicer system than OEM with the ocassional high volume run to the supermarket, and not a all the time, crank the volume, pump that bass, rock the boat system. Your results will vary.

The OEM tweeters sounded fine, but there is no way of getting real definition out of these. They are simply mediocre no matter the power upgrade. But that was also expected.

Enter Part II.

Part II - Because the idea was to keep most of the install as non-intrusive and quick as possible, but at the same time increase the audio quality in a budget, I selected the CDT Upstage UP-222 system to take over most of the duty of the OEM tweeters without replacing the OEM tweeters. I used one of those systems back in my E46 M3 days with great results, so this was a no-brainer.

The HiFi harness was modified to use the front speakers inputs and outputs as the Upstage inputs and outputs. In other words, the XD600/6 front channels outputs are actually powering 6 speakers via the Upstage modules.

The Uptage modules (one per tweeter) have 30 different manual settings that changes the crossover point, and output level of these tweeters. For this install I selected the lowest crossover point with the highest tweeter output level. So the OEM tweeters become more like filling tweeters and not the main tweeters -that will be the purpose of the Upstage tweeters. The Upstage modules do not affect midbass, only the tweeter frequencies above 3KHz or so.

The recommended location of these Upstage tweeters is on the A-pillars, facing the windshield. The idea is to use the windshield as a reverb device, for the highs to be "bouncing" against the winshield and filling the cabin, or so is their design purpose. That location was not even considered just because that defeats the purpose of a non-intrusive install. Therefore the next location available was the center speaker mount, with the tweeters facing the windshield.

The results were simply impressive -the sucker really fills a stage hole in the dash that we did not realize that existed before. The OEM tweeters just fill the sides nicely while the front of the dash fills the rest of the cabin. Voices are really clear and with a softness that only silk tweeters can reproduce. However, with metallic highs (like in dance and rock music) the Upstage still reproduce those with a metallic sound. There was no way that the OEM tweeters were going to do that by themselves.

Conclusion - We played Rihanna "Where Have You Been" after all this was set and done. My sister kept saying over and over again that her car got a complete brand new system.

That's really nice.
__________________
-2015 F30 320i, Imperial/Oyster, 8AT: August 2014 ED
-2012 E92 M3 Jerez Black/Rust Brown, M-DCT: September 2011 ED
-2008 E90 M3 Melbourne Red/Bamboo, 6MT: Gone
-2007 MK5 GTI United Grey/Grey, DSG: Gone
-2004 E46 M3 Carbon Black/Cinnamon, 6MT: Gone

Last edited by Technic; 01-07-2013 at 08:52 AM.
Technic is offline   United_States
0
Reply With Quote