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      10-18-2012, 05:49 AM   #1
MJ777LR
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Audio Upgrade Advice for an E90

I was hoping I could get some input from you guys on doing an audio upgrade on my 2007 328i E90. So here's what I have currently: the stock HiFi system, and that's pretty much it. I haven't upgraded anything since I got the car, and like many others, I find the stock system lacking in giving good lows and clean & clear highs. The bass is particularly disappointing, if I might say (let me just add, I'm not really looking at 'ground shaking' kinds of bass, but rather something deeper/richer). I also tinker with hifi and audio systems as a hobby, and so naturally my next step was to extend this to my mobile habitat, which is my car.

So, my plan is to replace the OEM amp with an aftermarket one, and also replace the underseats and front door speakers. e90post is addictive, and I've spent countless hours over several weeks reading audio upgrade threads. For this, I'd like to say 'thanks a lot' to those who have posted on their installs and given their insights prior, that's what makes this forum a true learning place. Anyhow, on to what I have in mind...

Reading through the forums, I've decide on two potential upgrade paths.

The first one:
- JL Audio XD600/6 amp
- Rainbow SLC 210.25 NG components
- Earthquake SWS 8 underseats

The second one:
- JL Audio XD600/6 amp
- Morel Dotech Ovation components
- Jehnert XE200 underseats

The third option would be some combination of the above two. Here's where my questions come in:

1) I was leaning towards the SWS 8 because I do not plan on adding a trunk sub. The XE200, as I understand it, is a midbass driver. While I have read much praise about the XE200, having not heard it in person, I don't know if it'll give me the deeper/richer type of bass I'm looking for (considering I don't plan on a trunk sub). Do bear in mind, 'ground shaking' is not what I'm looking for. Are my fears unfounded?

2) I understand there's somewhat of a difference in price between the Rainbows and Morels. While most of us I'm sure would love to get what sounds 'best', I'd also like to do so without making my wallet too much lighter and without buying a set that doesn't suit my tastes. To this end, what are your opinions in terms of the way each of the above sound? Which one is brighter, or more balanced, etc? Like the underseats, I don't have the opportunity to audition them, so relying on your descriptions is what I have to go by.

3) Between the Rainbows, Morels, Earthquakes, and Jehnerts, which pair complements each other better?

Like I said, thanks to all for having shared their insights prior. Any feedback on what I'm hoping to do would be greatly appreciated! Thanks!
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      10-19-2012, 05:01 PM   #2
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The Dotechs are discontinued now, but they play lower than the Rainbows which are also discontinued. We used to use the Dotechs in our L2 kits and they are very good performers when properly configured. We can't get them any longer.

The XE200 is not a midbass driver. It can be USED as a midbass driver, but we use it all the time in woofer applications. It is more linear than the SWS and lacks the SWS "bump" around 80. It's more accurate than the SWS above 100.

If you get the SWS, I would get the Dotechs- or what has replaced them, the Virtus - because they do a better job of meeting them at the top end of the woofer's effective range.

If you've emailed us and are looking for more user experiences, sorry about that. Many of our clients don't post, so if you have emailed us, email again and let me know and I can forward it to some users who can share their experiences directly.
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      10-19-2012, 05:52 PM   #3
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bass
Instead of earthqauke, what's your take on kicker underseat subs?
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      10-19-2012, 09:44 PM   #4
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VP, thanks for the info. How would a Morel Dotech/Virtus setup paired with the SWS-8 perform as compared to the Jehnert Flatlines?
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      10-20-2012, 07:19 PM   #5
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Morel + Earthquake ~ Blazer + Swim shorts
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      10-20-2012, 08:20 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaigoss69
Morel + Earthquake ~ Blazer + Swim shorts
I think what he is saying is business up top, party on the bottom.


....Except I know that's not what he's getting at.
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      10-20-2012, 08:22 PM   #7
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I think what he is saying is business up top, party on the bottom.


....Except I know that's not what he's getting at.
Not quite, LOL.
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      10-21-2012, 02:20 AM   #8
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Haha, good one, good one On another note, I've been doing some reading on the Flatlines and those seem like a good package, all things considered. What's you guys' take on those?
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      10-23-2012, 11:16 AM   #9
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Morel elate or hybrids...I personally have a pair hybrid ovation ii, n they are beautifully warm..even tho they aren't broken in all the wAy.
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      10-23-2012, 12:01 PM   #10
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I went with Musicar's Level 2 System with the XD600 Amp, Jehnert 3 ways (Tweet, mids and underseat woofers) and their level 1 sub with the Image Dynamics 12 in the trunk, and all I can say, is that they are sweet. NOT CHEAP, but quality and perfect integration never is.

I have the Logic 7, so I needed the mobridge to allow my stock deck talk to my amp.

I am also a HiFi Enthusiast, and own a Pioneer Spec 1 and Spec 2 circa 1978, as my home stereo bi-wired into some Bowers and Wilkins Bookshelfs.

The Jehnerts require some break in time, and my system is still new, but they are starting to open up.

I listen to a wide variety of music from Hip Hop (Tupac/Biggie), to House to acoustic stuff. Lately I have been playing some Stan Getz with Astrud Gilberto, which is a pretty silent recording and this system really brings out the recordings softness and details. On the other end of the spectrum, I love blasting AC/DC Live while enjoying my 100% E85 tune, and the everything from the crowd to the kick drums sound AMAZING. It's like being in the concert.

Hip/Hop Rap is kinda ehhhhh, if that's your bag, I would stick with the stock system and upgrade to a trunk woofer, but then again I am playing relatively low bit rate MP3's.

But overall I am very pleased with the integration and performance of this system. If it's in the budget, I would just get a package from MusicarNW, as it's all tuned with all the right wiring harnesses and plugs for the speakers and amplifier hookups. You are paying for all the details in kit setup (amp rack that screws into factor holes, harnesses, research for proper sound setup and component choice and support) Ken even responded to support emails over the weekend within 30 mins of my requests.

Best of luck in your search.
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      10-24-2012, 06:03 PM   #11
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not meaning to jack...but i like the ops start.

im thinking of doing similar, but more step by step

what exactly can an ms8 power? im thinking of just doing ms8 and dls fronts to start...then add the earth and rears as per technics $650 setup.
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      10-24-2012, 10:25 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djbordie
not meaning to jack...but i like the ops start.

im thinking of doing similar, but more step by step

what exactly can an ms8 power? im thinking of just doing ms8 and dls fronts to start...then add the earth and rears as per technics $650 setup.
Will have results on such a setup soon as quiksr20 will install his DLS soon
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      10-25-2012, 06:35 AM   #13
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awesome, cant wait

i figured it was a good step 1...some fronts/tweets and the ms8...$400 start point with massive upgrade potential.

however the ms8 doesnt push very much power...
and does it have to be run in 8 channel all the time? or can it be like 2 channel 80/w each or something?
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      10-25-2012, 10:55 AM   #14
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Is the JL Audio XD600/6 amp plug and play to replace the stocker on the OEM HiFi system, or do I need cables and adapters?
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      10-25-2012, 12:27 PM   #15
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Is the JL Audio XD600/6 amp plug and play to replace the stocker on the OEM HiFi system, or do I need cables and adapters?
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showpo...28&postcount=1
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      10-25-2012, 06:41 PM   #16
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Good information, do you sell the adapter and other items? Website?

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      10-25-2012, 09:14 PM   #17
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Perfect, need the parts, how do I get them?


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      10-26-2012, 07:38 AM   #18
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Thanks to all for the helpful insight, it's much appreciated! Will update you all on my setup once I decide which route to go. markusvt, I'd recommend sending Technic a PM. I received my harness set not too long ago, and I'd highly recommend it! The quality is top notch and the harness itself makes life so much easier - kudos to Technic!
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      10-29-2012, 04:59 PM   #19
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All my research is leading me to the XD600/6 also. I'm going to stick with the OEM speakers for now, I've read they're halfway decent with a good amp. If not, you can always upgrade the speakers as a second step.
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      11-05-2012, 05:41 PM   #20
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I went with morel 4" doors, and tweets, jehnert underseat woofers, arc audio amp, JL cleansweep for an easy plug n play option from musicarnw.
Still waiting on the calibration CD from Ken (VP Electricity) so that I can finalise the install however.
Is he around?
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      11-05-2012, 06:13 PM   #21
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After doing a lot of thinking, I'm actually leaning towards the Jehnert Flatlines and the XD600/6. What I like about the Jehnerts is that the entire set is tuned to work together. As much as I'd like to add an MS-8 and do my own tuning and adjustments, I'd also like to keep the setup simple. This seems to fit the bill. And, the spacers and adapters come with the set as well, eliminating a lot of time and effort which would otherwise be spent fabricating your own rings and such.
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      11-05-2012, 07:17 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MJ777LR View Post
After doing a lot of thinking, I'm actually leaning towards the Jehnert Flatlines and the XD600/6. What I like about the Jehnerts is that the entire set is tuned to work together. As much as I'd like to add an MS-8 and do my own tuning and adjustments, I'd also like to keep the setup simple. This seems to fit the bill. And, the spacers and adapters come with the set as well, eliminating a lot of time and effort which would otherwise be spent fabricating your own rings and such.
Nothing is "tuned", you still have to use the crossover on the JL amp to make the two sets work together. And then you are still stuck with an un-tuned system. Just because the HiFi signal is flat, does not mean that the frequency response in your car will be flat. You will end up with plenty of peaks and valleys, no matter which speakers you choose. The Jehnerts don't sound better than their competitors just because they were engineered for German cars. Also, don't think that because it is the same line, that the speakers are perfect for each other. This goes for other brands as well. If you know the type of sound you like, and you could do A/B testing before you buy, you'd probably end up with components from brand A, woofers from brand B, and perhaps even a sub from brand C.

Not trying to discourage you from your decision, just pointing out that "mix-n-matching" works quite well in the audio world, and that no matter which speakers you choose, you would still need a processor to get everything "tuned to work together".
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