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      12-11-2012, 01:47 PM   #1
Jake@MOTIV
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REVIEW: MusicarNW Subwoofer System

When I purchased my car I was excited to hear what the premium sound system was going to provide. I’ve sat in other people’s 335’s and always felt like their stereos sounded better and played more clear. I was not disappointed with my car’s audio performance, but I was far from pleased when listening to my songs. I listen to a wide variety of music literally spanning just about every genre and I wanted to improve upon my stereo.

Having been a member on e90post for a few years I have always been intrigued by VP Electricity / MusicarNW threads because I felt his knowledge and time spent on our specific platform is something you can’t get from just any local stereo shop. I reached out to VP Electricity / Ken and was pleasantly surprised to see how much time he spent discussing my preferences and figuring out what I was looking for. He offered me two options and told me both would sound great but that I could start with just the first part – and add to it the second if I felt I needed more.

Option 1 was to simply add his MusicarNW e90 enclosure to my trunk with a JL Audio 500.1 and a JL Audio 10w3v3-4ohm woofer. This is the stage 2 sub setup they offer. He informed me that it would come with literally everything I needed for the install – and he wasn’t joking. I went ahead and ordered this setup and when it arrived – it really did have everything. They even included oem tape so that I could lay wires and route harnesses in a clean and oem fashion. I received the following items within the same work week after submitting my order (and I am on the complete opposite side of the country):

-MusicarNW e90 Subwoofer Enclosure
-JL Audio 10w3v3-4ohm Subwoofer
-JL Audio 500.1
-JL Audio Remote Level Knob
-JL Audio Subwoofer Screen/Grill
-Custom harness with built in LOC w/ remote on 12v+ for a true plug-n-play wiring setup
-Top quality RCA cables for LOC to Amp connection
-Terminated high quality flexible power (with fuse and fuse holder) and ground wiring
-Wiring harness for AMP to Subwoofer connection
-OEM Fabric/Tape for installation of all wiring/harnesses



I was so excited when all of the parts were delivered that I tore into the packages and began to prepare for my installation that evening. Since I am on the east coast and they are on the west coast I was able to give them a call and go over the settings the amp needed. To my surprise Ken said he had already set everything up the way he would put it in the car and that I could make whatever changes from that to suit my tastes. He also gave me some pointers on where to start with all of the EQ settings in the factory setup so that things were setup properly to get the most out of this setup.



So on to the install. The first thing I did was to take out the trunk floor and both of the side walls.



I then began to lay out all of my wiring and harness where I felt was the cleanest way to run them so that I could make it look as factory as possible. I placed the amplifier in the empty space just behind the back seats on the driver side and continued to route all wiring along the path of the factory wires. Using the supplied fabric tape I made sure everything was routed cleanly and began to secure everything into place. The power wire and the speaker out from the amp ran under my control unit and up the passenger wall along with the factory harness to the battery location. I secured the power wire to one of the terminal bolts on the battery and tucked the speaker wires up high to be ready for the sub connection when I reassembled the trunk. The ground, RCA cables, and 12+ remote wire ran up the driver side wall with the factory wires and back towards the L7 amp. I grounded the amplifier to the chassis ground that is located on the driver side rear wheel arch. The RCA and 12+ ran to the LOC which was part of the plug-n-play harness that I installed between the factory connector and the L7 amplifier.









I will grab pictures of the box installed above the battery as well in the near future. My trunk is full of performance parts waiting to be installed right now

Once everything was secured down I reassembled the trunk and placed the enclosure into the tray over the battery box. It fit like a glove. I have done some heavy cornering and cloverleaf entrances/exits to highways and the box hasn’t budged. It fits so well and the carpet matches flawlessly.

After about a week and a total of maybe 4-5 hours of time played on the subwoofer things really started to settle in. I do have the ski-pass in my rear seats and they are the split/fold-down rear seats. I was worried that not enough sound would get into the cabin because I have read on here that people say the trunk is really well sealed from the cabin. While that may be true – this setup gave me just about everything I wanted. The way Ken had me setup the crossovers and the way he setup my amplifier made everything work so much more efficiently. As a result of the subwoofer taking over the low end frequencies it allowed the mids and highs to really do their job without sacrificing clarity when the factory woofers couldn’t achieve the “fullness” I was looking for.

This leads me to option 2 from Ken. He informed me that option 2 could go a few ways. With a budget in mind he was very helpful in going over how I could improve upon what I consider a near perfect setup without having to completely overall the speakers in the car. I am a big fan of crisp and responsive low end bass even though I don’t play it very loud or overpowering. I just like to have a very full and rich sound. I had achieved that on the low end. As I mentioned, it allowed the other frequencies to play more efficiently – especially the higher frequencies – BUT I do want more mid=bass. Ken informed me that the factory woofers under the seats are pretty good at providing clean mid-bass sound but are underpowered. If I wanted to spend a little more I could replace them with something even better – but he said that if I simply powered them with an aftermarket amp I could most likely achieve the full sound I am looking for. Apparently the harness included in my kit is already set up for plug-n-play wiring so that I can send signal from an amp to the under-seat woofers and power them as mid-bass speakers. I have yet to go this route but will be doing so at the start of the New Year once I free up some money. I will be ordering everything from Ken and will most likely go with a compact amp that he carries or swap out my JL 500.1 for a multi-channel JL amp that still gives me the ~400w to the JL 10 and the appropriate power to my under-seat factory woofers.

I could not be happier with the products and the service I received from MusicarNW. It is rare to find a company that has superior customer service before the sale – but even harder to find is a company that maintains that level of service after the sale. I know at ProTUNING Freaks we pride ourselves at making sure our customers are happy with their tunes whether it is during the process or months down the road. We will take a look at logs and adjust things if need be. Once a customer – always a customer. I was ecstatic to see that Ken and the guys at MusicarNW have the exact same values and beliefs.

I look forward to moving on to option 2 in the new year and updating my review with my impressions. I hope this helps anyone out there who is trying to figure out what they want to do with their audio setups in their car and even with how to go about installing things in an organized and clean way. While the package is not low budget – you DEFINITELY get your money’s worth with these setups. The quality is second to none and it performs beyond what I was expecting.
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      12-13-2012, 04:30 PM   #2
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Well written. I want to know how much for it? It is easy diy?
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      12-13-2012, 04:57 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kygiabao View Post
Well written. I want to know how much for it? It is easy diy?
Price is listed on their website. I will offer to help locals installs.

In all honesty the way Ken designed this kit makes it as easy as something this integrated can be. I wouldn't hesitate to get this. It is exactly what I was hoping it would be.
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      12-13-2012, 05:28 PM   #4
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I am a system from MusicarNW too.

Where did you connect the remote wire? Ken had me tap it into some antenna wire leading the antenna module at the top of the car. The only problem with this is that every time I start the car, there is a several-second delay during which the amp is not activated, so someone who sits in the car knows it's not a "stock" setup.
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      12-13-2012, 06:21 PM   #5
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Ken Rocks, I got the stage 1 sub from him (Image Dynamics ID10DV4v3) and purchased a JL 500.3 amp (300x1 to sub/ 100x2 to underseats).
It sounds great and his service was awesome, but damn our trunks are sealed..

I dont have fold down seats w/Ski pass.

I set up the same sub model ( diff box ) Same amp in my friends 2013 KIA and his sub sounds literally 4x louder with less gain and Im running a way more expensive setup.
He has a basic LOC + stock head unit and im on a full MS8 DSP, Ive spent months trying to perfect mine and in less than 10 mins his trumps mine ( for bass ).
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      12-13-2012, 11:14 PM   #6
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My harness had the remote coming out with the LOC.
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      12-21-2012, 11:12 AM   #7
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any updates?
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      12-21-2012, 11:32 AM   #8
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The system is definately fully settled. Its EXACTLY what i needed. It covers the spectrum so complete now that I can go loud, quiet, booming, etc and the system just sounds full. I don' tlisten to music very loud 99% of the time so something that was musical was my goal and they nailed it with this design.
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      12-21-2012, 12:31 PM   #9
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nice, this may be something i need to jump on, any installed pics of the woofer setup?
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      12-21-2012, 01:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QUiKSR20 View Post
It sounds great and his service was awesome, but damn our trunks are sealed..

I dont have fold down seats w/Ski pass.
Have you been following my progress?
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      12-21-2012, 09:16 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mob17 View Post
Have you been following my progress?
Mob I have not ( but I will check now ) is it the infinite baffle thread?
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      12-21-2012, 11:22 PM   #12
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Quote:
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Mob I have not ( but I will check now ) is it the infinite baffle thread?
Yeah. There's a few others as well. Check out kaigoss' and makkan's too
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      12-22-2012, 10:10 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigNate View Post
nice, this may be something i need to jump on, any installed pics of the woofer setup?
I am currently in Florida at my inlaws until the 31st/1st. I will get a pic now that my trunk is back to empty from the diff/lsd swap I was doing and completed (had all my tools and parts stacked in it and the "stealth box" from MusicarNW proved its worth because it literally lets me have full use of my trunk).
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      12-25-2012, 05:02 AM   #14
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pretty new to forums so sorry but i would love to see pics of the JL Audio Remote Level Knob if you can, thanks
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      12-25-2012, 09:54 AM   #15
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I just left it in the center console. No stealthy install. I rarely touch it.
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      12-25-2012, 10:20 AM   #16
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Just stumbled on this thread, and had actually been considering the purchase of the exact same package, but for my E92 335i. Two questions:

1) Did you start with HiFi or L7 audio?

2) I have the Sirius tuner in the space where your sub amp is mounted. Would it fit in the plastic trunk thing, or is there not enough room there?

Thanks, and merry Christmas!
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      12-25-2012, 12:51 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N8N View Post
Just stumbled on this thread, and had actually been considering the purchase of the exact same package, but for my E92 335i. Two questions:

1) Did you start with HiFi or L7 audio?

2) I have the Sirius tuner in the space where your sub amp is mounted. Would it fit in the plastic trunk thing, or is there not enough room there?

Thanks, and merry Christmas!
1) I have Logic7
2) I did a full mockup / test fit of it in the rear of the trunk (closest to the rear of the car) in the plastic area and it does all fit. The amp is very compact. I really wouldn't hesitate buying the setup...it made me finally love driving to work again because things sound as they should
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      12-25-2012, 11:01 PM   #18
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Hmmm... I just have the "HiFi" system. I'm not sure if the sub would get it to the point where I would be happy with the system or if I'd want to do more upgrades at that point, and if so, what they should be. But I guess that is outside the scope of this thread.

And as far as "love driving to work" - I was just discussing with a coworker (yeah, my office is cool like that - even though I hate actually being at the office, my coworkers are awesome, to the point that I made it a point to drive to his place to stick my head in on Xmas since he was having dinner and all) the fact that I have my winter tires on and was kind of disappointed that I didn't have any snow to play in, he mentioned that if he had my vehicles (my other one is a '99 Cherokee) he probably wouldn't drive the Bimmer at all in winter and my response was that I'm such a big woosy boy now that I've had it and driven it that driving the Heep - which is an awesome vehicle in and of itself - feels like punishment. The biggies are the heated seats, heated steering wheel (I know it's decadent, but it's awesome) and of course the iDrive which I thought was the biggest gimmick in the universe, but really, it does everything that all the electronics that I've put in the Jeep since I've had it do, but all integrated into an actually reasonably easy to use interface with a nice big screen for easy use on the move. Literally the only thing that I give up driving the Bimmer is 4WD and if I need that, the office is probably closed...
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      01-15-2013, 12:52 PM   #19
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Updates? What's the white cable for on the right side of the trunk?

I'd also be interested in where/how you ran the remote knob. Looks like a great setup!
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      01-15-2013, 06:00 PM   #20
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Ja Ken took time to explain things to me that were already mentioned even in google searches.... top notch! I recommend not to skimp from a MusicNW setup. You paid for a killer car, don't walmart it on the inside.
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