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      01-13-2013, 12:04 PM   #1
sohlman
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Changing Head unit and sound system upgrade

Hi All,

I am new to the forum.

I have a 330ise Auto in a fairly basic spec which has the base head unit. The sound quality is not to my liking and is devoid of any detail.

I have read many posts on here and the general conceses is to keep the OEM head unit. While for interior looks this is prefereable, it is my understanding that upgrading the sound systems on these cars is not easy and not without problems.

If i am not mistaken this is what i have deduced from all the various questions and answers on here.

Many owners are dissatisfied with the sound system on their E90/91/92/93 regardless of spec Base / Hifi / Logic.

Keeping the OEM makes adding amplifiers difficult with both Base and Logic requiring recoding as a minimum. But ultimately you need to add a DSP of some sort and these units are not cheap 250 - 600. In order to do this inevitable the wiring will need to be got at to add a dsp and amplifier.

The OEM speakers are poor quality, non standard size 3 mounting holes. 10cm's and very shallow in mounting depth. Not all cars have tweeter (base) and the subs vary from 6.5" - 8" and are very narrow making adding aditional speakers difficult.

The OEM amplifiers are underpowered.

The head unit is not easy or cheap to add Ipod control, Bluetooth if you don't have it etc.

The main benefit of keeping the head unit beyond asthetics is that you keep your gongs and parking sensors and steering wheel controls and you can code the car as you require it which can't be done with an aftermarket unit

Aftermarket wise you can fit both double or single din units, but face plates will have to be bought along with various wiring harnesses to ensure all steering wheel controls, gongs and parking sensors work.

As my car has heated seats i would have to spend 200 just on mounting hardware to get a double din unit so i am sticking with a single din option which is around 80 cheaper. Plus double din units are more exspensive once you go past the entry level models.

The benefits of aftermarket Head units is that you have a far superior source which can have built in Dacs' digital sound processors and such like for far less outleight then a DSP. Adding amplifiers is far easier via RCA leads and there is far less chance of ground loops and buzzes on the system. The sound quality from MP3's should be massivly improved for example with this route.

Obviosly there are some negatives the main one being the coding, but there would appear to be a wiring harness available that allows the use of steering wheel controls, gongs and parking sensors.

The only was of getting good bass is to fit a subwoofer in the boot, but the boots on these cars are so well sealed that you need something very powerfull to get into the car. Then you have a problem with vibrations etc. Plus you then loose a large chunk of boot space.

So my upgrade route is going to be as follows: -

I am undersided on sterio's but have found three single din units that have DSP, Time alighnment and DAC's built in along with 3 RCA preouts for amplifying up front rear and sunwoofers.

These all have time alignment, DSP's, variable colour displays, IPOD control, Bluetooth. The Pioneer is the best of the three. I feel that you have to factor in a further 200 to cover faceplates, wiring harnesses and fitting for the above.

Kenwood KDC - BT 92SD 140

JVC KD - R90 BT 165

Pioneer DEH 80 PRS 220

The running the amplification i have two Genesis Profile Amplifiers one of which is 4x50W RMS (profile 4) and the other is 1x350W RMS 4 OHM (Profile Mono) for running the front, rear and and subwoofer channels. These amps i chose due to their impecable reputation for sound quality and also because they are very thin and so would allow fitting into the floor without taking up boot space. They are just 38mm to top of logo and 35mm to top of amp body.

For speakers i have gone down the route of MB Quart custom fit coaxles that are the exact size of the BMW speaker and i have bought BMW speaker conectors so that no cutting will be required and everything is reversible. I wanted to go with components at the front, but as i don't have front tweeters i would have further exspense of buying the window surrounds and i though this is something i can add later down the road. They are also unique in that the cones are larger than 10cm's and are nearer 13cm and they have a perfect power match to the amplifier of 60W RMS.

Then for bass i have aquired a dual voice coil Diamond 10" Subwoofer and i have found a chap in Shefield that makes a custom fit fiberglass enclosure that fits into the spare wheel tray in the boot under the boot floor. This subwoofer is 400w RMS and is designed for small enclosures. I also have a bass controller which i have always found is useful in previous installs as you can make a quick change without having to go into menu's.

At the moment nothing is installed as i have been buying the parts i need. My plan is to start with the new head unit. I am waiting for fitted prices from my Sterio installer. I will then fit whichever head unit fits into my budget for this month along with the speakers. I also have a MK Parrot kit installed which i am not getting on with so i will remove this at the same time. Then when money permits install the amplifiers and the subwoofer.

I plan to build a false floor using the original boot floor as a mould. I will then cut the floor at the same point as BMW to allow a hinge to be fitted so that it can be lifted up. I will mount the amplifiers under the floor on another piece of MDF so that the tops of the amplifiers are level with the new floor. I will mount the subwoofer in the enclosure and then cut a whole in the floor where i will mount a grill to protect the sub's cone. I can then carpet the entire floor to match the interior. My hope is that once it's finished the boot will look OEM to the casual onlooker and only forums members will be able to tell that the angle of the floor near the seats is no longer curved, but flat.

Hopefully now that i have permission to make my own thread i can no longer get grief for another persons thread.
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      01-13-2013, 01:11 PM   #2
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Nice plan and really good stuff!

Yes you're right the sound source is obviously important and replacing the OEM HU is better. The only reason i didnt go down this route was due to software updates. As long as you are aware and don't mind, or if you know of a way to get around this, then its all good! I think Makkan is also replacing his HU so hopefully he can advise you more.

Quote:
The only was of getting good bass is to fit a subwoofer in the boot, but the boots on these cars are so well sealed that you need something very powerfull to get into the car. Then you have a problem with vibrations etc. Plus you then loose a large chunk of boot space.
Thats correct but there is a better way to get loud and low without rattles. An IB install. Myself, kaigoss, makkan have tried this. Kaigoss and makkan have tried a few methods each and i think have an IB install presently like myself
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      01-13-2013, 01:37 PM   #3
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Welcome to the forum.
Read your thread and found it interesting as you are doing things slightly different.
I am sure that you have done your home work but few things to suggest:

1- HU: I'd straight away eliminate JVC HU (seriously, can they make a good HU). Looked at Kenwood HU very quickly and I do not think it comes with auto tuning of DSP and EQ as apposed to 80PRS. And if I am not wrong, you will have to manually enter centrain readings in Kenwood HU to get the optimal results.
For me 80PRS or P99RS are good HUs. Can you not stretch your budget and go for 80PRS?

2- Harness:
You may wish to consider this. This is all in one solution.

You may wish to relocate your HU in the trunk, in case if your car goes to dealer for any upgrade.

Also you may require harness from amps to you OEM harness --> speakers.

I am sure these should not be a problem for you if you do your home work properly.

3- Drivers: Can you kindly post the link to MB Quart custom fit co-axials?

4- Sub in the boot:
You may wish to read reviews on the subs fitted in that storage area.
Also, do you mind sharing your previous car and previous installation (s)? You seems experienced chap...

False floor seems a good idea, but have you done it before? Are you going to do it yourself or somebody else is doing it?

Your amps selection is brilliant. I am not sure about their sizes, but could they go to the space where OEM CD changer sits?

As Mob17 suggested, you may wish to read other sub installation methods. You may ask your guy in sheffield to build a corner enclosure as from my personal experience it works better compared to other approaches, except IB install.
IB install is very unique and worked out best so far for many of us. You may wish to read Mob17 and Kaigoss IB installation which are more OEM friendly than my IB install.

If you go for corner enclosure or IB install, then you can use that storage to fit your amplifiers.

What about under seats? They are the weakest link / point in BMW installation...so think very carefully about what you are going to have it there.

Looking forward to read your response / progress.
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      01-13-2013, 03:03 PM   #4
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My experience is not massive with in car systems, but i like my music, my family is heavily musical and i used to do a bit of live sound engineering for my sister. I also have pitch perfect hearing so i notice bad sound and it frustrates me.

My previous installs most recent first are as follows: -

BMW E46 had a JVC head unit which was a single din DVD. Good sound, OK hands free good ipod control. This was hooked up to Infininity 6.5 inch components in the doors and rear shelf. I ran a very rare Power Acoustik area 51 amplifier. The amp was 4x200w RMS and was mounted in the spare wheel well as it's a 17" round amplifier. My local ice dealer sold it to me second hand. This ran the fronts and i had a directed 600W rms 12" subwoofer in the boot in an off the shelf box. I had the rear channels of the amp bridged to mono and used the head unit to power the rear speakers for fill. It sounded great, but was frankly too loud. Volume control went up to 100 on the head unit and my ears could only handle 15.

My classic car a BMW 635csi has an old system which comprises of a Pioneer Retro look head unit fitted in 2004. 3 Alpine V12 Amplifiers. One powering the 4x4x6" speakers. One powering 2x8" subs fitted under the rear seats and one mono amp powering a MTX 10" band pass box. It really needs better speakers, but i don't want to cut into the car, but have just found some 6.5" speakers made by Rockford Fosgate that have adapter plates for the 4x6 locations. This car has a hidden bass controller and it's the best part of the system. When i start my restoration on this i will redo the system using more modern components that were not available when i installed things before.

My first real car was a Pug 205. I had a top of the range Alpine Head unit with Infinity components front and 6x9's in a custom MDF shelf. There was no subwoofer, but tonally this was excellent.

Fist car was a 0.9 litre polo and had 9 speakers to make up for the lack of engine but sounded horrible as everything was cheap.

Thanks for the link to the shop. I have favourited this

Regarding the speakers i bought them from Audiovisual world see link.

http://audiovisualworld.co.uk/shoppi...-speakers.html

I am not sure what is IB can you explain?

My stereo shop says the bass will be ok with power which i have, but suggests that if we need more we can do one of two things. Remove sound deadening in the parcel shelf or behind rear speaker covers drill 3" ports into the boot for the bass to get in.

I have not done anything underseat so would probable have them running of the head unit front channel for now, but if i feel the need for more then i think the earthquakes are the only way, but they are pricey. Then i would run the mids from one change on the amplifier and underseats off the other with the rear off the head unit.

as for the false floor i thought this was something i could do myself. How hard can it be. I am going to make out of wood two mock up amplifiers and then build the floor and cur the holes. This was i don't scratch my amps. The floor is basically flat. The it's just a case of carpeting with appropriate carpet. I was also thinking of lining the edge of the floor and the boot with velcro so that it does not rattle over bumps

J
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      01-13-2013, 03:23 PM   #5
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Would love to see some pics of the 6 series install!

Sorry, IB=Infinate Baffle. These are a few threads worth reading:

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=788289

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=740146

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=782297

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=775047

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=773904

http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=764549

Edit: most people keep the stock locations for the mids and tweeters. Im just thinking if you have pitch perfect hearing you may want to fabricate some pods?
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      01-13-2013, 03:48 PM   #6
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Many thanks
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      01-13-2013, 04:04 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post

Regarding the speakers i bought them from Audiovisual world see link.

http://audiovisualworld.co.uk/shoppi...-speakers.html
I am not sure about these. I could not find reviews on these and not seen them installed on sound system here on the forum (unless I missed that thread).

You may wish to buy DLS4 components from this seller and you would require these spacers (mob17 for you as well to fit your morels in E92) along with new window trims to house your tweeters (50 from stealer).
DLS4 should be around 100 + 20 = same price as Quart. Exception would be windows trim.
And DLS4 are very very good drivers.


I have gone down the route of fitting co-axial in BMW doors and trust me, tweeters sound better in their own window trim housings.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
I am not sure what is IB can you explain?
Mob17 has kindly provided all the links.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
My stereo shop says the bass will be ok with power which i have, but suggests that if we need more we can do one of two things.
I'd strongly suggest you to read all other methods of fitting the sub before you go for what you have be told. Read all the links which mob17 has provided especially the last one.

Go for corner enclosure if IB is not viable option by your installer.
Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
Remove sound deadening in the parcel shelf
It is not sound deadening sheet only, but weather seal as well so no air can enter from the rear shelf. And at the top of that it is filling the gap b/w the metallic sheet and rear parcel shelf which sandwiches third seat belt housing.

If you remove this, you will be inviting rattles.

Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
or behind rear speaker covers drill 3" ports into the boot for the bass to get in.
Technically, that will make your rear speakers as passive drivers (bass driving their cones) and would interefere with their sound producing abilities.
There is already a big hole in the middle of metallic sheet under rear parcel shelf, if that helps your installer.


Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
I have not done anything undersea so would probable have them running of the head unit front channel for now, but if i feel the need for more then i think the earthquakes are the only way, but they are pricey. Then i would run the mids from one change on the amplifier and underseats off the other with the rear off the head unit.
You can:

1- Run front components / speaker
+
under seat drivers

from amplifier

2- Rear speakers of HU

I have looked into the answer of running 80PRS both from internal amp (rear speakers in your case) + RCAs (for amps) and only one guy in USA has mentioned that it can be done.
However pioneer recommend one way or the other but not both.

When considering under seats, you may wish to consider Jenherts which are mid bass drivers compared to earthquakes (sub bass drivers). You can leave this for your stage 2 and keep your OEM drivers at the moment.

Other approach could be amping your front and rears and driver OEM under seats of your HU.


There you go, you have few options/ routes to think and re-think.
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      01-13-2013, 06:58 PM   #8
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Just want to correct some erroneous assumptions...
Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
Hi All,
I have read many posts on here and the general conceses is to keep the OEM head unit. While for interior looks this is prefereable, it is my understanding that upgrading the sound systems on these cars can be easy and without problems.

Keeping the OEM makes adding amplifiers difficult with both Base and Logic requiring recoding as a minimum.
Not neccessarily so, but the right path IMO
But ultimately you need to add a DSP of some sort and these units are not cheap 250 - 600.
Depends on the path chosen, for HiFi --> not necessary (or for L7 with a MOST pre-amp) (caveat: unless its DSP that you are after)

The OEM speakers are poor quality, non standard size 3 mounting holes. 10cm's and very shallow in mounting depth. Not all cars have tweeter (base) and the subs vary from 6.5" - 8" and are very narrow making adding aditional speakers difficult.

The OEM amplifiers are underpowered.
All true, but you still have a great platform to upgrade, and even though the choices are limited, they are still plenty.

The head unit is not easy or cheap to add Ipod control, Bluetooth if you don't have it etc.
For $300 there is an OEM HU that does both.

The main benefit of keeping the head unit beyond asthetics is that you keep your gongs and parking sensors and steering wheel controls and you can code the car as you require it which can't be done with an aftermarket unit
Additionally, SQ is generally considered to be as good as other comparable aftermarket options, for HiFi-> comparable to any other analog HU, for L7/MOST, as good as it gets (unless you are talking DSP, which can be done internal or external to HU)

As my car has heated seats i would have to spend 200 just on mounting hardware to get a double din unit so i am sticking with a single din option which is around 80 cheaper. Plus double din units are more exspensive once you go past the entry level models.
There is also option of climate control with integrated heated seat button

The benefits of aftermarket Head units is that you have a far superior source as far as the source quality, the OEM HU is comparable to aftermarket peers, not inferiorwhich can have built in Dacs' digital sound processors true here, if you want integrated DSP, but there is also DSP downstream of HU which is what many have elected hereand such like for far less outleight then a DSP. Adding amplifiers is far easier via RCA leadsThe technic harness which is cheap for what you are getting, makes adding amps to OEM HU as easy if not easier than any aftermarket HU and there is far less chance of ground loops and buzzes on the system. Dependes on installation quality, and possiblity exists with either OEM or aftermarket options, in fact, the Balanced Diff outputs of HiFi system are generally better at noise rejection that traditional common ground topologies The sound quality from MP3's should be massivly improved for example with this route.Depends what you are talking about...comparing what to what



The only was of getting good bass is to fit a subwoofer in the bootDepends on goals, you can get great midbass drivers which play deeply (Jehnert) in the underseats, but the boots on these cars are so well sealed that you need something very powerfull to get into the car. I ran a ID10 on 300w with no issues on bass levelThen you have a problem with vibrations etc. Plus you then loose a large chunk of boot space.Musicar NW corner enclosure

So my upgrade route is going to be as follows: -
Good Luck, not knocking any of your plans, but you've made A LOT of erroneous or misinformed assumptions. From my research the Pioneer is a great HU.
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      01-14-2013, 05:37 AM   #9
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Thanks for the responses. My assumptions have been gained from reading around a 1000 pages on this forum. Happy to be corrected. I am learning a lot from you guys.

The problem as i see it is there are thousands of different routes to get to the same outcome. A system that sounds good.

I keep hearing Jeherts as a good options, but can not find anyone that sells them in the UK.

The MB quarts i have bought for example have no reviews on here. I have heard people say they are not good, but no one has heard them so i thought i would give them a try. They will be a massive upgrade to what is there and MB quart is a quality German company so there products should be good.

For sure my system will have some compromises in it as i don't have unlimited budget, but i hope to have something that sounds better than logic. I am also very keen to have a system that can be removed with no signs.

iB set up does indeed look good. In fact i am considering doing this in my 635csi, but i have two concerns. One is that cutting the car will affect resale. Not an issue with my 635 as i will never sell her. The other is that cutting the car will affect ridgity of the car and i like to throw a car around. Again not an issue with the 635 as it's floppy anyway as it's very old.

The beauty of the underfloor is that it's non invasive and understated allowing full use of the boot. Yes it won't sound as good, but i always prefer a sealed enclosure as it gives a very tight bass.
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      01-14-2013, 07:37 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taibanl View Post
Just want to correct some erroneous assumptions...
Good Luck, not knocking any of your plans, but you've made A LOT of erroneous or misinformed assumptions. From my research the Pioneer is a great HU.
taibanl
I agree with most of your comments however there are few which I may not agree due to different location of the OP.
In case if you have missed that OP is from UK and in case if you do not know that in UK salaries are low, people are axed by taxman hardly and tax paid on everything is higher than USA. You guys are very lucky to buy all mods stuff pretty cheap compared to your UK fellows.

Considering that, I want to bring few things in to your attention:
1- For $300 there is an OEM HU that does both.
In UK, I have seen many sellers selling base HU from 50-300 ($100-600) on ebay. Equally, I have seen HU with BT and USB going for 350 ($600-700) which makes it expensive buy for UK members. Would you buy that or would you buy aftermarket HU with built in DSP / TA for 230?
I'd appreciate if you can provide a link of HU being sold for $300 with BT and USB as it may work out cheaper to import it from USA. Though we will have to pay import taxes on that stuff.

2- Depends on the path chosen, for HiFi --> not necessaryI've gone down that route. I have also assembled a system with DSP (MS-8). I feel that I require DSP in my car now. Many others may feel that way after going down the hi-fi route.
I cannot justify spending 400 on MS-8 or 300 (cheapeast you can get) on Helix DSP whereas I can buy aftermarket HU with nearly similar option for less than that.
You can live with just a stereo sound system but at the end of the day it is not an excellent sound system.

3- The technic harness which is cheap for what you are getting, makes adding amps to OEM HU as easy if not easier than any aftermarket HU
Brilliant harness and I have suggested this to many if they are going down the OEM route. But it works out slightly expensive considering postage + import tax to UK members compared to you guys.


4- the Balanced Diff outputs of HiFi system are generally better at noise rejection that traditional common ground topologies
Correct, but do not forget that you'd require amps which can accept balanced differential input as well. And they are expensive in UK.
Unless you add DSP in your system and can use any amp.

5-Depends what you are talking about...comparing what to what
OP is comparing the ability to play MP3 of OEM HU VS aftermarket HU which has built in DAC. With built in DAC, after market HU is far more able to reproduce sound to how artist created it. Having said that, I am not degrading OEM HU and it is fantastic. However no paper work suggest that it has built in DAC.


I am bringing these points into others attention so people can compare that what is economical for one person may not be the same for others living in a different counrty.
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      01-14-2013, 07:39 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sohlman View Post
The beauty of the underfloor is that it's non invasive and understated allowing full use of the boot. Yes it won't sound as good, but i always prefer a sealed enclosure as it gives a very tight bass.
J
I'd still suggest you to go down the corner enclosure route.
Let me know if you are interested to hear a sound system in UK with corner enclosure and I can put you in the right direction.
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      01-14-2013, 07:55 AM   #12
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Seeing as i have already bought a box for the underfloor i will go with that for now, but changing around boxes is a piece of cake. I also have a 12" directed Subwoofer in a normal standar sized box so can run both, video both and show the sound difference.

I plan to make a video of the sound system cranking before and afterwards so a comparision can be demonstrated.

Your points in your other post are exactly as i have been thinking. Going the OE route looks a very exspensive option to get to the same level of sound system. As things stand at the moment with the components i have bought it's going to cost 1000 + OE would be getting closer to 2000 once i had factored in fitting.

OE head unit with CD's is good and as i understand is made by Alpine, but with MP3's particularyly through the parrot kit i have make me turn the music off. It sounds flat as a pancake. Music i love i can't listen to so i end up listening to the radio or engine.

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      01-14-2013, 03:56 PM   #13
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Hi Sohlman, First timer here!!

i will be picking up my New(to me) 2007 e90 320d with the basic stereo and have been researching the audio system side quite intensely, as I see you have. I'm really pleased to find your post here as the info is great from all parties involved and will be following it closely.

I'm no alien to car audio by any means, however new cars are integrating more in their own systems and was glad i have done the research before ripping the stereo out.

I wont be at all. So good luck chief!!!

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      01-15-2013, 01:45 PM   #14
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Welcome cheesegeezer. Happy to hear about your project. There is a danger of information overload on this issue. But the responces i have had so far have been very positive.

I have now booked in provisionally my car for coding and once this is complete i can start working on full install.

I have made a little progress today and have some nice high quality Ply of a 9mm persuasion for starting my boot floor. This is some leftovers from a gymnastics floor we have just fitted in our premisis. This will work very well. My builders will make up a template and cut this to size for me tomorow. What will take me an hour will take them 5 mins.

I will try and photoshop up a photo to show what i am thinking of.

J
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      01-16-2013, 08:07 AM   #15
taibanl
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http://rover.ebay.com/rover/0/e11021.m45.l1123/7?euid=0abf1f1b42964423a7365e2d4cbfda8d&loc=http%3 A%2F%2Fcgi.ebay.com%2Fws%2FeBayISAPI.dll%3FViewIte m%26item%3D330813948453%26ssPageName%3DADME%3AB%3A SS%3AUS%3A1123
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      01-16-2013, 05:21 PM   #16
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As promised a mockup of how i plan to make the floor. I was going to make this up over the weekend, but my carpenter has offered to make for me and so this will be much better then what i could do. Hopefully the picture gives you an idea of what i have in mind.

p/s The boot picture is not my car, i grabbed a screen shot off the net as i did not have a shot. My car does not have the split fold seats so i suspect this is a coupe, but nevertheless it should give you an idea.
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      01-17-2013, 07:09 AM   #17
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Looks good in the photo.
Will your amps be exposed?
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      01-17-2013, 07:22 AM   #18
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Just to add my experience with an aftermarket HU...I was able to change the oem and put in an alpine cda117 that I had from another car. I mainly did it for bluetooth and Ipod.

My car had the Hi fi system, and I knew from reading the site that I would lose some functions ie: PDC (which I dont have) the ability to have updates done through the OEM HU, and the chimes.

In my case i didnt mind the updates...if i ever needed them I can switch the radio out in ten minutes. But I expected to lose chimes and didnt! I dont know why, but i'm ok with that. I was also able to retain steering wheel controls.

So FOR ME it wasn't as bad as everyone made it to be.
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      01-17-2013, 09:28 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dannyboy View Post
Just to add my experience with an aftermarket HU...I was able to change the oem and put in an alpine cda117 that I had from another car. I mainly did it for bluetooth and Ipod.

My car had the Hi fi system, and I knew from reading the site that I would lose some functions ie: PDC (which I dont have) the ability to have updates done through the OEM HU, and the chimes.

In my case i didnt mind the updates...if i ever needed them I can switch the radio out in ten minutes. But I expected to lose chimes and didnt! I dont know why, but i'm ok with that. I was also able to retain steering wheel controls.

So FOR ME it wasn't as bad as everyone made it to be.
I guss it depends on what kit you used?

So which kit (harness) you used?
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      01-17-2013, 10:39 AM   #20
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It's funny you ask, I ordered a Metra wiring harness ( the one for a 2006 325i) and got sent an american international instead. I never heard of them but decided to give it a go and if it didnt work I would just get the Metra.

I was also able to get constant off the harness as well. I know there were posts stating that constant wasn't available either.

The only thing I needed to do was run accessory to the fuse box.
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      01-17-2013, 11:26 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dannyboy View Post
It's funny you ask, I ordered a Metra wiring harness ( the one for a 2006 325i) and got sent an american international instead. I never heard of them but decided to give it a go and if it didnt work I would just get the Metra.

I was also able to get constant off the harness as well. I know there were posts stating that constant wasn't available either.

The only thing I needed to do was run accessory to the fuse box.
Danny, glad it worked for you.

I have posted a link to the kit (see above) which can overcome all those issues (gongs and steering controls), though it is slightly expensive.
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      01-17-2013, 12:11 PM   #22
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Just to clarify the american international harness was just to connect to the oem radio harness. I used the pac swi can2 and swi rc to connect the steering controls.

The pac controls cost me about 80 bucks.
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