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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > BMW E90/E92/E93 3-series General Forums > Regional Forums > UK > UK Technical Forum > Rudz ICE upgrade stage 2: JL 10W7 with JL Slash 500/1 v2 DLS R4 and Focal 100CA



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      11-10-2012, 05:20 AM   #1
makkan00
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Rudz ICE upgrade stage 2: JL 10W7 with JL Slash 500/1 v2 DLS R4 and Focal 100CA

Please read here for Rudz's Stage 1 sound upgrade.

After finishing stage 1, Rudz was happy for few days. That happiness finished soon when he compared his sound system to his partner’s Merc sound system. Comments were ‘lack of bass’ in the sound system.
MS-8 is brilliant piece of kit especially with its built-in amp. But there are few well know issues around limiting bass. To get best out of MS-8, you will have to calibrate MS-8, re-calibrate with different settings and keep doing it till you find the ‘correct sound’ for yourself. Definition of ‘correct sound’ may vary from person to person depending on their taste of music and what they want to hear in their music.

So to improve Rudz’s sound system, I met him to discuss it further.

Here are few things which were raised;
1- Front sound stage and Morels were ‘harsh’. I asked Rudz the meaning of harshness. Rudz wanted Treble lowered and central speaker to be relatively quieter.
2- Lack of bass
3- Sound not ‘cohesive’. Rudz tried his best to explain this to me and he wanted more SQ in his sound. On RTA of iphone’s JL application, all frequencies were present and there was no major gap. I tested his sound system with different sound tracks and found that central L7 mid was soft clipping. Moreover rear L7 mids were ‘reasonable’ but not great.

I calibrated MS-8 with slightly different xover settings considering ‘abilities’ of SWS-8s and it sounded slightly better.

As mentioned earlier, Rudz has premium taste of sound and he wants ‘excellent’ drivers in his car. I have suggested him to change the rears and central with Vibe slick 4, but Rudz wanted better drivers than that.
So Rudz selected

DLS R4 components for rears

Focal 100CA1 co-axial for central speaker

JL 10W7 Sub

JL Amp 500/1 V2

JL Audio RBC-1

Corner Sub enclosure

0 gauge Wire with distributor block and 4 gauge wires for Audison amp and JL Amp


All of it and Rudz’s car was left with me.

I started working on Morels first. Morel’s crossovers are set to 0db attenuation for tweeters from factory. As they were harsh for Rudz despite of reducing treble from HU, therefore I set it to +3 db for calibration purposes. And plan was to set them to -3 after calibration to keep tweeters soft.

Here are few photos:
Factory Settings

+3 db attenuation before calibration

-3 db attenuation after calibration


Results: Yes it worked and Tweeters produced ‘soft’ sound compared to pre-intervention. Afterwards, I had to increase the treble settings to +2 on the HU to get meaningful but clear treble out of front tweeters.

Next task was to replace the central mid. As for L7, we added BMW OEM clip during stage 1 upgrade, therefore we had to add the other side of OEM clip for Focal co-axial.

Few photos:





Next was to fit DLS4 components in the back. My worries were
1- Can tweeters be fitted under the grill without drilling new holes for tweeters / tweeter housings?
2- Where will I fit crossovers?

On specification sheets DLS4 co-axials are same as components and they save the worries of fitting tweeters and crossovers. BUT Rudz had already ordered components, so I had to find a way to fit these and overcome the above two hurdles.

After removing the housing of tweeters, they sat in the medial corner of speaker area without drilling new holes. That was great and I used Velcro to keep them there.

Now, crossovers......? Where should I fit these considering these were bulky?

During some experimentation on my sound system for I.B setup, I discovered that BMW has left some space next to central belt housing. I assume BMW engineers had to leave that space so that central belt housing can sit there.

With some experimentation, I fitted the crossovers in that space. I had to pass all the wiring from rear speakers to that central space and fit the crossovers there. And wirings for subs and tweeters were routed back to speakers.

Connecting the crossovers:


Hiding the crossovers:


This space was closed by necessary means so that crossovers stay there.

And here is the photo of DLS components after fitting


Now comes the task of fitting 10W7 in corner enclosure. We were worried about the corner enclosure coming out of that area on sharp cornering. After studying the contours of the enclosure and surrounding, I created a safety lock for corner enclosure:


And fitted and locked corner enclosure looked liked this:

It was most difficult task due to strength of enclosure. Drilling it and fitting screws was mission impossible.

After fitting the enclosure:




If you read the Rudz stage 1, the back of rear seat was filled by MS-8 and Audison amp.

Shall I relocate MS-8 somewhere else or shall I fit JL amp at other place?

Considering the size of Audison amp and JL amp, it was not physically viable to fit both at the back of rear seat. So I had to fit JL amp somewhere else.
After little bit of experimentation, I took out the skin of storage below the boot tray. JL amp sat there nicely. I had to network all the wirings including JL bass boost remote around that region.

Velcro used to secure JL amp




Some calibration, recalibration and tweaking was done to get optimal ‘SQ’ out of this sound system.

I was told that sound deadening would not work in the trunk. I wanted to try this out as Mega suggested 'it worked' (from his past experience).

After listening to sound without sound deadening, I started applying Dynamat Extreme.

It was applied at the back of sub enclosure and on the boot lid.



It had made significant improvement. Rattling was minimal after applying dynamat extreme.

And final setup looked like this



Setting up decent sound system take couple of hours and yes it took whole morning to tweak and get ‘brilliant’ sound out of this system.

Few notes on what I have learnt:
(These are personal opinions and not hard and fast rule)

-L7 components are good but not excellent. During sound stage 1, central L7 was ‘limiting factor’ for the front sound stage.

- DLS4 components are brilliant. Comparing it to Morel Hybrids, treble was more pronounced and these were ‘warm’. Bass was better compared to Morel Hybrids IMO, however Morel Hybrid crossovers give you more flexibility. Considering price of both, I would go for DLS4 any day.

-JL amp bass boost controller controls only bass boost and does not control the gains of sub amplifier. On minimum settings, you will still have bass but not boosted.

-Corner Enclosure worked better than sealed / ported enclosures that I have used in the past. Possibility is that you get more lateral space in the trunk for the sound to travel and as ears are laterally placed in our body, therefore bass sounds better. It is my assumption of lateral sound displacement and lateral recipient (ears) which sounds better compared to front / rear positioned subs.

- Addition of sound deadening material to the trunk helps to reduce rattling. It DOES WORK, though some rattling will still remain there due to reg plate, CD changer box handle and rear tail lights.

-Settings for MS-8 depend on your components. You cannot always set it as suggested in many threads. You will have to find optimal crossover settings which work best for your drivers. I am not a great fan of DSP but there are two benefits of MS8 which are hard to beat. Logic 7 (front staging) and built in amplifier. If you like to listen to your music as if you are in a concert, then this is for you. Otherwise look somewhere else.


Now what can I say about this sound system.
‘It sounded 3-5 times better compared to last time’. Emphasis was more on SQ and we got excellent results here.

Certainly, this car has one of most expensive equipment in the whole UK and it sounds 'Just Awsome.'

Rudz made a shot video of it playing music and I hope he will upload it.
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      11-10-2012, 01:25 PM   #2
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Certainly looks a huge step up from stage 1 and look foward to seeing the video being uploaded.

The tweeter posistion in the centre speaker did you make any adjustments as to its angle or does it come like that?

With the dynamat in the boot, did you cut away sections of the carpet material and then stick synamat down or did you stick staright down on the carpet as I cannot see it celar in the pictures?
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      11-10-2012, 03:26 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mistryn View Post

The tweeter posistion in the centre speaker did you make any adjustments as to its angle or does it come like that?
It is fixed in that position. You cannot move it though it is directed toward the cabin.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mistryn View Post
With the dynamat in the boot, did you cut away sections of the carpet material and then stick synamat down or did you stick staright down on the carpet as I cannot see it celar in the pictures?
There is a trim and you take it out. After taking out the trim you get some shielding by another thick material. I have applied Dynamat on it.
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      11-10-2012, 05:41 PM   #4
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Like that Sub enclosure.
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      11-11-2012, 06:01 AM   #5
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Sam2,
Great write up! Rudz is clearly as much of a fuss pot when it comes to Sound as I am then lol! Hope it sounds as good as it looks!!
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      11-11-2012, 09:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparky68 View Post
Like that Sub enclosure.
Sparky, it is very effective as well.

Quote:
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Sam2,
Great write up! Rudz is clearly as much of a fuss pot when it comes to Sound as I am then lol! Hope it sounds as good as it looks!!
Sam1
Hope you get the results what you are looking for.
JL 10W3 and MS-8 is the spine of music system if adjusted properly. Going for JL amp for JL 10W3 is the best decision you have taken and all the best for your sound system.
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      11-11-2012, 01:20 PM   #7
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RTA analysis:
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      11-11-2012, 03:11 PM   #8
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Quote:
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Sparky, it is very effective as well.



Sam1
Hope you get the results what you are looking for.
JL 10W3 and MS-8 is the spine of music system if adjusted properly. Going for JL amp for JL 10W3 is the best decision you have taken and all the best for your sound system.
Do they do one for a e90?
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      11-11-2012, 05:06 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Do they do one for a e90?

Sparky, They sell the side enclosure in states for E90 and E92 though it works out pretty expensive.
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      11-11-2012, 05:19 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Sparky, They sell the side enclosure in states for E90 and E92 though it works out pretty expensive.
Always does! Guess i will get my lads at work to make me a carbon fibre one
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      11-11-2012, 06:07 PM   #11
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Apologies, it's been a manic weekend, did not get a chance to respond to this write-up earlier

First Credit where Credit's due

Sam's great, he's very helpful, courteous, knowledgeable, best of all listen's to what you've got to say, as he's mentioned, I was very happy with the initial install but there were a few bits that I wanted to improve on, bass being one, I researched long and hard, Sam was consulted throughout, he gave me great advice, I started off looking at the JL W7's, then the Orion HCCA's, then moved to the W6's for their sound quality, then something terrible happened at work, so had to scale down my budget, bid and won a Boston G5 on ebay, these are great subs, but unfortunately the sub I won turned out faulty :-(, I got lucky and won a JL 10W7 + corner enclosure at a great price, I also bought a JL slash amp off ebay, so my sub setup was complete, wanted to improve the front sound stage, really wanted a good centre driver, looked for a Morel Integra/Tempo, could not find one for cheap so went for a focal 100CA, not the best driver, will definitely upgrade in the near future, went a bit crazy with the rear decks really, I did fancy a spare-no-expense type of a system so found myself a solid pair of mids in DLS R4, I am very happy with my decision as the end result is astounding, I believe the DLS drivers have enhanced the front stage, I can hear stuff that I couldn't before ?? I think the clever MS8 has made very intelligent use of the speakers behind my head, it feels like I'm in the middle of a live performance, very clean sound, very engaging, the instrument and vocal images are placed perfectly. I am just loving it, thank you mate
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      11-12-2012, 07:15 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparky68 View Post
Always does! Guess i will get my lads at work to make me a carbon fibre one
Looking forward to it mate.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rudz View Post
I am very happy with my decision as the end result is astounding, I believe the DLS drivers have enhanced the front stage, I can hear stuff that I couldn't before ?? I think the clever MS8 has made very intelligent use of the speakers behind my head, it feels like I'm in the middle of a live performance, very clean sound, very engaging, the instrument and vocal images are placed perfectly. I am just loving it, thank you mate
Rudz,
I heard few tracks in your car and after that when I listen to those tracks on my iphone (with audiophile headphones) or on my car, I could not re-produce the same sound (with that clarity). I miss so much lower mid bass and lower end of bass spectrum on my car.

Hope you are enjoying it.

Now my sound system needs to be improved compared to yours
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      11-12-2012, 08:03 AM   #13
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It is an expensive hobby mate, but an addictive one
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Fronts: Morel Hybrid Ovation II 4, Rears: DLS R4, Center: Focal 100CA, Subs: Earthquake SWS8, JL 10W7, Amps: Audison LRX 6.9, Audison LRX 2.9, JL Slash 500/1 V2, DSP: JBL MS8
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      11-12-2012, 09:11 AM   #14
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Rudz, some great components and equipment... sound slike you've got yourself an awesome sounding car!
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      11-12-2012, 09:16 AM   #15
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Cheers mate, how is ur build coming along? Impressive set of components I must say, envious of the 12w7, should give u thumping bass :d
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Fronts: Morel Hybrid Ovation II 4, Rears: DLS R4, Center: Focal 100CA, Subs: Earthquake SWS8, JL 10W7, Amps: Audison LRX 6.9, Audison LRX 2.9, JL Slash 500/1 V2, DSP: JBL MS8
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      11-12-2012, 09:45 AM   #16
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Cheers buddy, all is on standstill right now until my installer is free! He is swamped with work so either I wait or I take the job to the same guys who did my last install..

I'm beginning to get impatient having waited almost 3 weeks now! Also my JL HD 600/4 amp arrived today so you can imagine just how excited I am becoming!

Yeah that 12w7 will add thump for sure but the aim will the sound deaden the sh&t outta the car for maximum SQ.

S.
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