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 Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier...

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Stampers

Stampers

Male Number of posts : 1553
Age : 32
Location : Soham, Ely
Drives : BMW 32HATE
Registration date : 2009-07-06

Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... Empty
PostSubject: Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier...   Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... EmptyMon Jul 04 2011, 22:50

Ok, so here's the predicament i'm in...

I want to keep the interior of my car as OEM as possible.
That means a standard single DIN OEM unit, with speakers behind the standard grilles, and everything hidden away nicely.
No subwoofer, no flashy Alpine headunit, no extended pods for larger woofers, and no parcel-shelf hacking.
So that means I need to utilise the spaces already available without hacking anything up to get it to fit.

Oh, and before I go on, the car is a BMW E36 328i Coupe. Yes it's not VAG, but there might be people on here who've come across the same idea.


So what i've currently got is this setup...

OEM BMW CD43 headunit - standard OEM wiring.
GROM iPod adaptor kit - wired in through the CD changer port on the headunit and 'pretends' to be a changer.
OEM Standard 5.25" component woofers in kickpods - wired straight to the stereo.
OEM Standard 1" component tweeters in the doorcards - wired from the OEM 5.25" component woofers.
OEM Standard 4" coaxial's in the rear parcel shelf - wired straight to the stereo.



And what i'd like to do is the following...

OEM BMW CD43 headunit - standard OEM wiring
GROM iPod adaptor kit - wired in through the CD changer port on the headunit and 'pretends' to be a changer.
2x line-level converters - wired into the OEM wiring behind the headunit from the FRONT L&R and REAR L&R wiring to convert them to RCA outputs for an amplifier.
Vibe 5.25" Slick/Black Air component woofers in kickpods - replacing the old OEM 5.25" paper woofers. Straight swap wired through a crossover to 1" tweeter.
Vibe 1" Slick/Black Air component tweeters in the doorcards - replacing the old OEM 1" paper tweeters. Straight swap wired through a crossover to 5.25" woofer.
Vibe 6x9" Slick/Black Air coaxials in the rear parcel shelf - replacing the old OEM 4" paper woofers. Mounted via an adaptor plate.
Vibe Slick A4 4 channel amplifier - mounted under the parcel shelf to power front components and rear 6x9's and connected to headunit via RCA leads.


So what I need to know before doing this is using two line-level converters from the headunit a good idea? Will it cause any interference? Obviously I'll need a remote cable from the OEM unit to turn the amp on/off with the ignition but which wire would I hook it up to on the OEM BMW loom? Is there anything obvious/apparent that might go wrong when going ahead with this setup? I assume all the speakers will sound more powerful (before clipping/distorting) through the amplifier than they would do from the built in CD player amplifier?

I can understand if people think my brand choice is a bit rubbish, but I really like Vibe as a brand. I had 6.5" Black Air components fitted all round in the old MK4 Golf and it sounded so good even without a sub. Very good value for money too, which can't be a bad thing. And as all the speakers are going to be covered up, there's no need to be flashy and show off a brand name. Also, i'm not looking for mega bass. I don't want to put a sub in my boot as I happen to use the boot a lot for carting stuff about, that and the fact I don't like having a massive box just sitting in the car. I found that 6x9's sounded fairly nice in the rear of the old 318is and gave almost enough bass for what I wanted (and that was just running from the standard headunit power!).



So yeah, if anyone has any opinions on what i've suggested, that'd be fantastic.
I know that's a lot to take in, but I want to get this right first time! And do it all in one go too.
Cheers!
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Lupton_20vt

Lupton_20vt

Male Number of posts : 6815
Age : 29
Registration date : 2009-02-01

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PostSubject: Re: Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier...   Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... EmptyTue Jul 05 2011, 07:30

That awkward moment when the tech guy you would turn to to ask about your own set up, asks you what he should be doing. Laughing
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MarkGTX

MarkGTX

Male Number of posts : 2925
Age : 31
Location : fens!
Drives : Rocco and Passat
Registration date : 2008-01-19

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PostSubject: Re: Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier...   Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... EmptyTue Jul 05 2011, 13:31

How about getting a new head unit, that will most likely be much better than the bimmer unit and putting that in the glovebox or somewhere else hidden? I have seen where people have hidden the main unit and extended the wires for the face off so that the panel has been in the sun visor
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Stampers

Stampers

Male Number of posts : 1553
Age : 32
Location : Soham, Ely
Drives : BMW 32HATE
Registration date : 2009-07-06

Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... Empty
PostSubject: Re: Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier...   Stock headunit and aftermarket amplifier... EmptyTue Jul 05 2011, 14:23

Lupton_20vt wrote:
That awkward moment when the tech guy you would turn to to ask about your own set up, asks you what he should be doing. Laughing
Ha! I know what to do, it's just a case of signal frequencies being conducted via the RCA's.
I've not run a setup like this before so I just want to gather ideas as to whether running 2 line-level converters would be a better choice than just using an RCA Y-splitter at the amplifier end.


MarkGTX wrote:
How about getting a new head unit, that will most likely be much better than the bimmer unit and putting that in the glovebox or somewhere else hidden? I have seen where people have hidden the main unit and extended the wires for the face off so that the panel has been in the sun visor
That sounds a bit weird... and kinda stupid. I can understand from the modding point of view that it might be an interesting idea but for daily use, it wont work for me. But thanks for the input anyhow! I want the unit to be visible so I don't have to flip/open/move something to get to it when I want to change track, and having an OEM unit makes the dash flow a lot nicer. The OEM CD43 is made by Blaupunkt, which easily beats the crap out of most aftermarket units you can get. I had an alpine 9880R which sounded good, but didn't offer much clarity and had a pointless flashy display. So I went back to OEM.

Blaupunkt, Philips, and Harmon/Becker all make OEM units that are by far superior to most of the stuff on the consumer market. Only rare units like Nakamichi's and Denon's are worth getting if you're into EQ/SQ, and again they don't look OEM. Add some decent non-paper coned speakers and a more powerful amplifier and the stock OEM units are more than enough.


Incidentally, i've also found out that if I get some 6x9's with a nice large magnet that I can disconnect the tweeter and use them as a mid-bass subwoofer. I can then put some small boxes around them and port the sound into the cabin from the parcel shelf, giving me bass without sacrificng the boot by using a sub (as the 6x9's will still be hanging in the parcel shelf recess). Then just upgrade the front speakers to a 5.25" high-mid/tweeter component set to get the sound staging in the front of the car.

Already started getting bits together so hopefully make some progress this weekend.
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