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      09-14-2010, 11:59 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
If that includes shipping to SoCal, that's not a bad price.

Which 80x2 amp? Technic says you'd need at least 100W for each SWS8 to really maximize their value (preferably 150-200W).
It's not a bad price anyway. I'm not ebay, you don't get to grind me like you wanted to with your local shop

It is a known fact that more power is better. It's also a known fact that the difference between comparable amps at 80W and 100W is inaudible. If I don't mention a brand in public, it's probably because I can't sell certain brands over the Internet. That one is a Class D 2-channel from a very reputable company.

The midbass go under the seat 99% of the time. Otherwise, get Jehnert door panels, replace the lower third of your door, and get dual 6.5 midbass in each door.

Electrically, the built-in amp and the MS-8 amp are about the same. The MS-8 amp does tailor its output for the acoustic properties of the speaker, after calibration, and that helps it quite a bit.

I assumed that if you used the MS-8 to power the Focals, you would eliminate their passive crossover (which uses up a lot of power), and bi-amp them in the MS-8 (one pair of output channels for tweeters, one pair for the 4"). I have never tried this and I don't know if it will work, but it has a chance. The passive crossovers sap a lot of amplifier power with crossover filters and tweeter attenuation and notch filters - the MS-8 can do all that actively. Will it be enough? I don't know - my gut says no, but my gut isn't as experienced with the MS-8 as it is with the old school ways, because the MS-8 just started shipping, and there are a lot of use cases that I haven't tried personally yet. And if you're willing to try it, it will definitely be an improvement over what you are doing now, for the reasons mentioned above.
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      09-14-2010, 03:34 PM   #24
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Thanks for all the input guys, it's really appreciated. But there is something I want to say at this point: I used to have the Logic7 upgrade on my 2007 E92 and that, for me, was adequate. On this new car, because I didn't want to wait to order it from the factory, I took a model that came without the Harmon Kardon upgrade. It would have cost me, over 3 years, roughly $400. ($875 upgrade added to the sale price, but a lease is on the depreciated value of the car, divide by 36 months, you get the picture).

I've already spent about $150 more than that on just the Focal upgrade to the fronts + tweeters. And at this point, everything is just getting crazy. I just wanted a "little more amplification" or "a little more bass."

I understand that with taking the car to the shop, opening it up, that's a labor cost I should only pay for once. Basically, if you've got the car opened up, might as well do as much upgrading as you can type of thing. But there's a limit.

If I told you all, I couldn't spend more than say, $1,600 total on the whole upgrade (and that includes the $600 I've already spent on the speakers), then what could I possibly do? Remember, the Logic7 was good enough for me from 2007-2010, and at $1,600, I'd already be $1,200 over what I could have paid to get the target quality I was looking for.
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      09-14-2010, 03:41 PM   #25
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Well, if your goal was to be as good as Logic 7/harman kardon, you definitely did start out with one foot in a bucket.

But your logic isn't sound, I'm afraid. The MS-8 catapults you past those systems.

What can you do with a gee-whiz installed? Not too terribly much. You could probably do what UdubBadger did - have your existing 4/tweeter on deck power, add SWS-8 on a small amp, and do nothing to reverse the signal processing and as a result turn the bass and treble down all the time. That should be in the $1K installed neighborhood. It would be louder than h/k, and have more bass. Not sure if it sounds better or not.

You are encountering the irritating limits of the base Stereo audio system. Believe me, my life would be better and my business, too, if HiFi had never gone away.
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      09-14-2010, 03:57 PM   #26
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Looking at this thread:
http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=163804

it's becoming apparent to me that the SWS-8 upgrade is a lot of work, especially for a shop that's never done something like it before, not to mention I'd have to pay just as much in labor in 3 years to yank those out.

What this version of a "gee-whiz":
Technic harness for a clean way out of the HU, run it to a 2 ch. amp in the back, 10" sub back there, trust that the high-end mids/highs will cover as much in the middle frequency as they can, and be out the door for around $600 installed. That way, if I'm still not happy, everything is in place for me to put the MS-8 in and DSP/EQ the system.
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      09-14-2010, 04:08 PM   #27
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Do what you want - but it WILL suck, no question - and you WILL have to spend more to get it to not suck, and we're spending time explaining how to avoid spending money you don't need to spend.

If you read a DIY and you're not a DIY guy, ANYTHING looks like a lot of work. Front speakers are work. Pulling the head unit and installing Technic's harness is work.

I have guys I can send you to in LA that have done underseats before. That's not an issue in my mind - if I know some, there are more. It's what you want to do versus what you don't want to do.

Amping your sub isn't gonna get those Focals to sound any different. By the way, did anyone install capacitors on those Focals? Or are they trying to play all the boosted bass there is?
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      09-14-2010, 07:03 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VP Electricity View Post
we're spending time explaining how to avoid spending money you don't need to spend.
Yes I understand, but it's like you saying "I'm trying to help you save money, by Spending more money!" Damn this base system!!

Quote:
did anyone install capacitors on those Focals? Or are they trying to play all the boosted bass there is?
I have no idea.

I have a budget: I will spend an additional $1,000. That's it. Here's what that can get me, I just need to know what to pick:

Option 1: ["gee-whiz"]
Harness
2 ch. amp powering...
10" trunk-mounted sub
~$700

Option 1x:
Harness
JBL MS-8
2 ch. amp powering...
10" trunk-mounted sub
~$1,600
(this is really pushing it, but hopefully it should do the trick)

Option 2:
Harness
2 ch. amp powering...
SWS-8 underseat subs
~$1,000
(no MS-8 to process the sound, so this might be a "waste")

Option 3:
Harness
5/6 ch. amp powering everything
10" trunk-mounted sub
~$1,000

Option 4:
Harness
5/6 ch. amp powering everything
SWS-8 underseat subs
$1,200
(a little above budget, and still probably a "waste" w/o the MS-8)


*prices include installation and/or tuning

The thinking behind some of these options is that if a certain load is taken off the HU's built-in amp, it can do a better job helping to round out the system elsewhere. The message seems to be though, that this is wishful thinking on my part.

You guys haven't been in my car to notice, but basically, it sounds fine except for the volume's a bit low and the low-end is lacking. I think Option 3 looks the best. Go with the current EQ setup out of the HU, provide decent amplification to everything in the car, add some 'easy bass' to fill out the lowend. Be done with it.
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      09-15-2010, 11:59 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post

I have no idea.
OK, well for the money you spent on them, you probably want to make certain that they don't try to play the dramatically boosted bass your HU puts out on the speaker outputs.


Yes, the base system sure is a PITA.

I'm gonna give you another configuration, since we're on a budget. This is a package I can do, I haven't cross-checked it against going-rate prices.

- JL Audio CleanSweep (yes, I'm suggesting one! It will reverse the OEM processing, and nothing else)
- JL Audio XD400/4 (front/underseat ampage, 100W per channel)
- SWS-8 underseat woofage
- Technic harness for signal from HU to CleanSweep
- Wiring

Leave the rears on the deck power.

The gear is $975 with the harness and nice amp power kit and RCA cabling. The install should keep it cheaper than the $1600 option. It will sound MUCH better than the $1600 option and you can add a trunk sub later if need be - but your music will sound much better in the meantime.

- It reverses the processing
- It improves your bass - mid and sub
- The crossover in the amp will filter the bass out of your Focals that they can't play, and shouldn't try to.
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      09-15-2010, 02:08 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by VP Electricity
- JL Audio CleanSweep (yes, I'm suggesting one! It will reverse the OEM processing, and nothing else)
- JL Audio XD400/4 (front/underseat ampage, 100W per channel)
- SWS-8 underseat woofage
- Technic harness for signal from HU to CleanSweep
- Wiring
Thank you for this config. It looks like something I'd be into, just need these questions answered about it:

-Once the OEM processing is reversed, it won't be EQ'd at all? How does that work? It just won't need any additional DSPing after that? Basically, what's the more optimal thing to do here: JBL MS-8 w/ a 2 ch. amp or no MS-8 but get a stronger 4 ch. amp? (b/c the price diff. b/w your previously quotes $1144 and this $975 is not that much)
-This amp is rated at 75w x 4 channels @ 4 ohms or 100w @ 2 ohms. Are my Focals and the SWS-8s designed for 2 ohms?
-Also, the specs on the woofers say they can take up to 300w max. It's probably worth it to spend a little more to get an amp that powers them up to at least 150-200w each, no? Is this possible?
-I see that no matter what, the SWS-8's are being recommended. I really want a suggestion on a shop that's done this install before in LA. Please, anyone.
-The Technic harness is meant for a 4 ch. amp, so that makes good sense here.
-Where do the CleanSweep and amp units get placed?
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Last edited by munich_fanboy; 09-15-2010 at 02:19 PM.
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      09-15-2010, 02:21 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post

-Once the OEM processing is reversed, it won't be EQ'd at all? How does that work? It just won't need any additional DSPing after that?
NEED? NO, you won't need any.

DSP gets used in two ways:

- To reverse the pre-existing EQ in the HU in Stereo audio cars (I consider this a neccesity)

- To optimize audio performance through the use of EQ, crossovers, time delays, and other processing (which is strictly OPTIONAL).

So this config addresses the first and not the second. The CS doesn't do crossovers, or installer-adjustable EQ, or anything but "normalize" the signal.


Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
-This amp is rated at 75w x 4 channels @ 4 ohms or 100w @ 2 ohms. Are my Focals and the SWS-8s designed for 2 ohms?
I mis-stated that, sorry.

The Focals are 4 ohms.

The EQ are available in 4 and 2 ohms. You'd probably want 2.

Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
-Also, the specs on the woofers say they can take up to 300w max. It's probably worth it to spend a little more to get an amp that powers them up to at least 150-200w each, no? Is this possible?
If you want, get a 600/6 and bridge 4 channels to two, and that will give you 200W into 4 ohm SWS-8's. (Don't do this with 2 ohm drivers). That increases the kit total, of course.

Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
-I see that no matter what, the SWS-8's are being recommended. I really want a suggestion on a shop that's done this install before in LA. Please, anyone.
As a woofer, on your budget, they are the best blend of price and output.

Have you contacted Jorge at Haas in Santa Monica?

Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
T
-The Technic harness is meant for a 4 ch. amp, so that makes good sense here.
Well, lemme ruin that for you. The front channels will go to the CS, the rear channels will just get looped around so deck power still powers the rears.

Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
T

-Where do the CleanSweep and amp units get placed?
The amp fits where the OEM HiFI amp fits, below and forward of the driver's taillight under the cargo floor. The Clean Sweep can go on the shelf under the load floor, or under the forward load floor between the wheel wells, for two places.

I am PM'ing you some info.
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      09-15-2010, 02:42 PM   #32
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Thanks for the feedback. One more "general" question:

Given that the price difference between your previous config ($1144) and this one ($975) is not too much, what's the more optimal thing to do here: JBL MS-8 w/ a 2 ch. amp or no MS-8 but get a stronger 4 ch. amp?

Also, yes I talked to Jorge, but about the MS-8. Didn't go over SWS-8's. He's done that before?
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      09-15-2010, 03:07 PM   #33
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Hmm. Either one is a jump from where you were.

I can predict the performance of the Focal 4" on the JL amp. I can't predict the performance of the Focal 4" on the MS-8 amp.

Kaigoss has run them and feels that they won't work on the MS-8 amp, and he is the big proponent of "you don't NEED an amp with Logic 7 OEM speakers and an MS-8", so if we use his guidance in this matter, you would be better off with the bigger amp and the Clean Sweep.
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      09-15-2010, 03:11 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post

Also, yes I talked to Jorge, but about the MS-8. Didn't go over SWS-8's. He's done that before?
Dunno. I haven't asked him either.
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      09-15-2010, 04:21 PM   #35
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Any other suggestions for LA installers for the SWS-8 underseats? I'll be waiting for that PM. Thanks for everything so far.
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      09-15-2010, 04:38 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
Any other suggestions for LA installers for the SWS-8 underseats? I'll be waiting for that PM. Thanks for everything so far.
If you can unbolt the seats you can install the SWS-8 with the jsherri spacers - http://www.e90post.com/forums/showthread.php?t=314849 - without removing the OEM enclosure.
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      09-15-2010, 06:22 PM   #37
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Thanks for the spacers tip Technic, that'll come in handy.

I spoke with Jorge at Haas right now, he says that he's had bad experiences with the JL Audio CleanSweep (and so have other installers, he says). He just replaced a customer's CS with an Audison bit.one unit, and prior to that, there was another setup where the CS did a really poor job apparently. I don't know. That's what he's saying.

He also said he's done an underseat job in an X3 before, upgrading to a 6.5", so he didn't run into a really tight jam like I would going up to an 8".

What about going the Zapco route like VPe's done on a number of jobs. They've got built-in DSPs that could do the work of the JL CleanSweep, right? Are they too over budget for me?
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      09-15-2010, 10:27 PM   #38
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Jeez I think I am getting dizzy. This thread is spinning like a merry-go-round, and we seem to be stuck in a perpetual bonus round here.

Let me get you off the ride, so to speak. You have a shitty system in a leased car. It will take money - quite a bit of it - to fix all the weak links in the system. You have replaced one of the broken links, but others remain. So you have two choices. You either leave it the way it is, and you live with mediocre sound until your lease is up, or you replace ALL the broken links at an expense that is higher than what you want to spend, and knowing that you will have to yank it all out again - for more money - before you turn the car in a the end of the lease.

So which one is it gonna be, cowboy?
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      09-15-2010, 11:05 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kaigoss69 View Post
Jeez I think I am getting dizzy. This thread is spinning like a merry-go-round, and we seem to be stuck in a perpetual bonus round here.

Let me get you off the ride, so to speak. You have a shitty system in a leased car. It will take money - quite a bit of it - to fix all the weak links in the system. You have replaced one of the broken links, but others remain. So you have two choices. You either leave it the way it is, and you live with mediocre sound until your lease is up, or you replace ALL the broken links at an expense that is higher than what you want to spend, and knowing that you will have to yank it all out again - for more money - before you turn the car in a the end of the lease.

So which one is it gonna be, cowboy?

Excellent summary.
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      09-15-2010, 11:35 PM   #40
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Quote:
Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
Thanks for the spacers tip Technic, that'll come in handy.

I spoke with Jorge at Haas right now, he says that he's had bad experiences with the JL Audio CleanSweep (and so have other installers, he says). He just replaced a customer's CS with an Audison bit.one unit, and prior to that, there was another setup where the CS did a really poor job apparently. I don't know. That's what he's saying.

He also said he's done an underseat job in an X3 before, upgrading to a 6.5", so he didn't run into a really tight jam like I would going up to an 8".

What about going the Zapco route like VPe's done on a number of jobs. They've got built-in DSPs that could do the work of the JL CleanSweep, right? Are they too over budget for me?
Sigh. He isn't a JL dealer. OF COURSE the BitOne is superior. It costs $700 MORE! It better kick the JL's freaking ass! It does a ton more things. If I could get you to buy a BitOne, I'd get you to buy an MS-8.

But for what you're doing it works fine. I've tested it. All I wanted to know was if he'd put 8" in there. Everyone who puts 6.5" in there does it because they don't carry any 8" that fit (or Don because he has to use a Dynaudio cause he's just like that

What G--DD----- "jam"? WTF are you talking about? You're talking to people who have put Morels and Kickers and Rainbows under there, and the SWS-8 is this damned close to being a drop in - in comparison to the above, it IS a drop-in.

Listen to kaigoss. Your car. You have all the information you need to make a decision. You also have a lot of information of low value - of questionable accuracy, validity, and relevancy. YOU have to navigate it. Further data will NOT help you make a decision. You have more data than helps now. You have to make a decision (or keep wanking) with the data you have, because you have all the data you need. You don't need a fact-finding committee, you need a fact-facing committee
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      09-16-2010, 12:13 AM   #41
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Thank you everyone for their input. I guess I've pushed the community a bit far with my nitpickiness and extreme attention to detail. Can you blame me? It's a chunk of cash a great deal more than what I said I could have paid out the door to get sound I consider adequate.

In any case, I've decided to go with the package VP Electricity recently recommended:
- JL Audio CleanSweep
- JL Audio XD400/4
- SWS-8 underseat subwoofers
- Technic harness for signal from HU to CleanSweep
- Wiring

Just wondering what version of the SWS-8's to go with: X/XI to get the impedance matched properly and the best shop to do the job in SoCal.
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      09-16-2010, 08:37 AM   #42
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I would get the 2ohm version (XI) to "squeeze" an extra 25W out of the amp.
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      09-16-2010, 06:18 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by munich_fanboy View Post
Thank you everyone for their input. I guess I've pushed the community a bit far with my nitpickiness and extreme attention to detail. Can you blame me? It's a chunk of cash a great deal more than what I said I could have paid out the door to get sound I consider adequate.

In any case, I've decided to go with the package VP Electricity recently recommended:
- JL Audio CleanSweep
- JL Audio XD400/4
- SWS-8 underseat subwoofers
- Technic harness for signal from HU to CleanSweep
- Wiring

Just wondering what version of the SWS-8's to go with: X/XI to get the impedance matched properly and the best shop to do the job in SoCal.
I believe Technic's harness is for Hifi (stock amp in the trunk). When I PM'ed him today, he said it won't work with base radio (no tweeter in A pillars).
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      09-16-2010, 09:07 PM   #44
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Originally Posted by akhter View Post
I believe Technic's harness is for Hifi (stock amp in the trunk). When I PM'ed him today, he said it won't work with base radio (no tweeter in A pillars).
I just did one with his harness on exactly that .. base, no tweeters. Work quite well for me.
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