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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hi!
I have been installing a new stereo in my car for the past 16 months. Yes, I am slow, but I want it to be as perfect and thought out as I can make it. Which may not be that great, compared to some of the installs I see on this form and on the Web. I have only done 1 other install many years ago. Anyways, I have a ton of pics documenting everything I did, from the sound proofing, big 3 install, fiberglass kick panels and subwoofer box. Most likely, I'll create a YouTube video of what I have done and post a link here. But, I'll add a few pics here and there as well.

I just finished building a ported enclosure for the subwoofer. It's for an ArcAudio DVC 10" driver. I built the box to the recommended volume and port per the driver data sheet for SQ. I also built the box to fit behind the back seat on the driver's side so I can at least fold down the other seat if needed. Here's a video and a few build pics.
YouTube Video

Public address system Grey Electronic instrument Audio equipment Gas

Rectangle Grey Road surface Asphalt Gas

Public address system Traffic light Road surface Asphalt Electronic instrument

Product Wood Gas Machine Auto part

Automotive tire Motor vehicle Automotive design Audio equipment Rim

Circuit component Yellow Electrical wiring Pliers Wire stripper

Gadget Cable Audio equipment Electrical wiring Gas

Automotive tire Wood Gas Circle Plant



EDIT:
Here's what I have so far in my setup.
Product Peripheral Font Gadget Audio equipment


I'm not using the 2" CDT drivers anymore. The Morel speakers have a bit better imaging and sound a little better. I have done the sound proofing and the big 3 upgrade. I'll post pics and video of the journey in this thread with some links to a YouTube video here and there.

Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
is the box front all simply painted on? No actual rivets?
Correct. I am learning how to airbrush and I didn't want to carpet the front, so I thought it would be a great project to airbrush rivets and make the front like a piece of sheet metal. I sealed the front with a ton of primer and then lightly ran some 80 grit vertically along the primer. An inconsistent coverage of light to medium coat silver metallic gave it that sheet metal look. The top coat is 3 medium coats of high gloss polyurethane. I wanted to add some smoke coming up from the port, but I need more practice at that, so I just finished it off with the high gloss top coat.

Scotty
 

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I like the airbrush work! Having built over 1000 boxes over the last 30+ years, I鈥檓 always trying to come up with new things to do or try, either simple things that don鈥檛 add much time or cost, as well as stuff that isn鈥檛 cheap or easy. I did do airbrushing for a while back about 10 years ago but never on any sub box. Might have to see what ideas I can come up with. Well done!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks everyone for the complements!! It was lots of fun with some frustrations here and there but it worked out looking great.

I'll start posting pics of the custom kick panels next.

Scotty
 

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@wsmorton Welcome to DIYMA, Scotty. Very nice work on that subwoofer enclosure. (y)

For other ideas and information, you might take a look at DIYMA member audiophile25's Forester Build Log even though it's not an Outback and it's a newer MY. Unfortunately, the Forester in that build log was wrecked/totalled, but he's replaced it with a newer model and done a similar install. Some links:




There are other Subaru build logs here as well.

From my experience, Subaru's of that era will benefit greatly from some extensive sound deadening treatment. Maybe you've already tackled that, but if not, I would definitely consider it.

And while it might not be advantageous with the layout of your 40/60 split rear folding seats, you will typically achieve better subwoofer response and integration with the midbass drivers with less cancellations or nulls at the main listening position if the subwoofer is placed on the passenger side of the vehicle (opposite side of listening position).

I'm not sure yet if you have done much acoustic measurements and tuning with a microphone, or if you have a DSP installed, but you might experiment with placing the subwoofer on the opposite side if you haven't already.

Looking forward to seeing more of your install.

Cheers!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
@wsmorton Welcome to DIYMA, Scotty. Very nice work on that subwoofer enclosure. (y)

For other ideas and information, you might take a look at DIYMA member audiophile25's Forester Build Log even though it's not an Outback and it's a newer MY. Unfortunately, the Forester in that build log was wrecked/totalled, but he's replaced it with a newer model and done a similar install. Some links:




There are other Subaru build logs here as well.

From my experience, Subaru's of that era will benefit greatly from some extensive sound deadening treatment. Maybe you've already tackled that, but if not, I would definitely consider it.

And while it might not be advantageous with the layout of your 40/60 split rear folding seats, you will typically achieve better subwoofer response and integration with the midbass drivers with less cancellations or nulls at the main listening position if the subwoofer is placed on the passenger side of the vehicle (opposite side of listening position).

I'm not sure yet if you have done much acoustic measurements and tuning with a microphone, or if you have a DSP installed, but you might experiement with placing the subwoofer on the opposite side if you haven't already.

Looking forward to seeing more of your install.

Cheers!
Hi!

I started the build with sound proofing a little over a year ago. Just about a total gut job on the interior. Treated everything but the roof (ran out of material). I'll post a ton of pics for that as well. The CVT on this car is a bit noisy and it did help make it a little more quiet.

I'll try moving the subwoofer over to the passenger side and see what it sounds like. Thank you for the tip! I only recently got the system up and running so I am still tuning the setup. I don't have a DSP but I am looking for one now. I am looking for the Helix DSP.3 or better. Need 6 channels in and with optical input and 8 channels out. My head unit is a Pioneer DEH8800BHS with auto eq and time alignment. What I didn't realize when I got the unit was that the TA is for a 2 way setup and not a 3 way. Since I have a 3 way setup, I will have to get a DSP. I'm keeping my eye on the classifieds. :>) Prefer to buy used but if nothing comes up anytime soon, I'll just bit the bullet and go new.

Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Hi!

Here's the equipment that I have....so far. It's all hooked up and I'm still tuning it. I got a bit creative with PowerPoint for the pic. I have seen diagrams like these before but I never knew how they made them.

The 2" inch drivers are not being used anymore. I prefer the sound from the Morels and the imaging is also better. I am not opposed to upgrading the mid-range to a high end 4" like the Scan-Speak 11M or the Audio Frog GS40 or GB40. But I'll need to get a component set with the matching Tweet since I'm taking out the 2" CDT speakers. With all these changes, I may just have to make another set of kick panels. :>) Once I get a DSP, I'll also be able to consider installing tweeters in the A pillars, maybe even a mid-range.


EDITED: I added the setup pic to my first post.

Here's a quick pic of the kick panels. I still have to finish the plastic molding piece around the edge of the door entry.

Grille Vehicle Automotive tire Hood Motor vehicle


Kick panels before finishing.
Automotive tire Wood Auto part Metal Rope (rhythmic gymnastics)


Amp Rack. It also tilts up to get to the spar tire.

Blue Rectangle Wood Funeral Gas


Door speakers in custom rings.

Automotive tire Tire Automotive lighting Hood Motor vehicle


1/0 gauge power wire on the drivers side.

Motor vehicle Automotive exterior Auto part Electric blue Wire


That's all the pic for now. I'll post the build pics of each one next.

Scotty
 

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Hi!

I started the build with sound proofing a little over a year ago. Just about a total gut job on the interior. Treated everything but the roof (ran out of material). I'll post a ton of pics for that as well. The CVT on this car is a bit noisy and it did help make it a little more quiet.

I'll try moving the subwoofer over to the passenger side and see what it sounds like. Thank you for the tip! I only recently got the system up and running so I am still tuning the setup. I don't have a DSP but I am looking for one now. I am looking for the Helix DSP.3 or better. Need 6 channels in and with optical input and 8 channels out. My head unit is a Pioneer DEH8800BHS with auto eq and time alignment. What I didn't realize when I got the unit was that the TA is for a 2 way setup and not a 3 way. Since I have a 3 way setup, I will have to get a DSP. I'm keeping my eye on the classifieds. :>) Prefer to buy used but if nothing comes up anytime soon, I'll just bit the bullet and go new.

Scotty
Glad to hear you started the project with sound deadening treatment. (y)

I'm also happy to hear that you are planning to go with a good outboard DSP. It seems like the head unit you have is a nice, versatile source unit with good 4v F/R/Sub RCA preouts. But as you found, it came up a bit short on the required output channel count. A good outboard DSP such as the Helix models will provide MUCH better fine tuning of the adjustments for each parameter, as well as more useful features that the Pioneer head unit just doesn't have.

Post a "WTB" (Want To Buy) for the Helix DSP here in the classifieds. They do pop up here occasionally as we all tend to upgrade or swap equipment, but they are very popular and sell quick when they do pop up.

If you add the Helix Conductor remote knob to the Helix DSP (and especially if you aren't running any rear speakers), you only really need to run one pair of RCAs from the head unit into the DSP. The signal routing matrix in the DSP will allow you to route the single pair of inputs to all of the outputs you need. And the Conductor remote will allow you to easily control the Master Volume of the system and the Subwoofer Level independently, along with source switching and tuning preset selection. It's still nice to have the 6 input channels for versatility in the future, tho'.

Ideally, you would set the Pioneer head unit's volume at its maximum unclipped RCA signal output level and leave it set there at all times. You would then use the Helix DSP's Conductor remote for main system volume and subwoofer level. This will maximize your SNR to provide the lowest noise floor and cleanest source signal for your system.

If you don't already have amplifiers for the system, or if you will need additional amp channels, you might consider one of the Helix DSPs that has the DSP and built-in amplifier channels in one unit. They save a considerable amount of space, and also greatly simplify the required power and signal wiring, which saves money and installation labor in the end. I'm doing more and more installs with these "all-in-one" DSP/amplifier units because it's so much simpler, faster, and saves so much space. You generally just need to add a small, efficient subwoofer amp, and nearly all of these DSP/amplifiers provide at least one pair of Processed/Tunable RCA outputs to add the subwoofer or other amp. Sometimes the DSP's built-in amplifier will have a pair of channels that can be bridged or are powerful enough to use one channel on each voice coil of a DVC subwoofer.


What do you have planned to connect to the DSP's Toslink digital input???


EDIT: (you beat me to it and have shown most of your gear in the photos and system diagram, so disregard some of my comments above and below)!


In addition, since this is your main Build Log for the car, you might want to edit your first post and list all of the equipment that you currently have installed...head unit, amps, speakers, subwoofer, etc...even though we know some of that by now. And maybe add a shortlist of the things that you plan to upgrade in the future, if anything.

I get on the forums somewhat sporadically these days, but I'll try to follow your build log.

Have fun with it.
 

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@wsmorton

I would Edit Post #11 above and cut and paste that into your first post. ;)


For a DSP, you might want to consider exchanging/swapping your Helix M SIX for a Helix M SIX DSP, that way it's a "drop-in" replacement and you don't have to add a separate DSP box to your amp rack or additional power & signal wiring. ;)



And yes, the CDT ES-020i are redundant with the Morel Coaxials in the kickpanels and would only cause detrimental comb filtering and lobing...i.e. erractic response that is difficult to EQ.


I posted this in another thread, but there is a very nice sale on a package deal of the Xcelsus XXM325 midrange and XXT30 tweeters on the NonSoloSpeakers website right now that saves over $100 on the combo. They are both fantastic drivers regardless of the price. The combo is around $315 USD Shipped, but changes depending on the Euro/USD exchange rate.

They remove the European VAT and it is basically replaced with the shipping charges. I just ordered this combo again for a buddy's upcoming install and it was ~$312 USD shipped. I've purchased from them multiple times in the past with no issues and had them shipped to SoCal, USA.



But the ScanSpeak Gold 11M with an appropriate tweeter would certainly be very, very good as well. It would offer a bit more SPL capability which you'll generally want for kickpanel installs...

You might also consider the SB Acoustics Satori MR13P-4 for your kickpanels. They are quite a bit deeper and 5.25" drivers, but offer excellent performance if they'll fit, and they are not outrageously expensive...


Whenever you combine a separate midrange and a tweeter in the kickpanels, A-pillars, or anywhere for that matter, try to keep the drivers mounted as close together as possible, and preferably in a vertical orientation to each other as oppossed to side-by-side. This minimizes vertical lobing patterns and provides smoother response through the crossover region.

This in turn improves the simularity between the direct vs. reflected sound that reaches your listening position and will be easier to EQ and will be less detrimental to the important imaging cues that are essential to creating a good soundstage.

The closely spaced midrange and tweeter become more like a single "point source" similar to what coaxial drivers try to achieve (but they have their own issues unless they are true coincident drivers). Where I can, most of my midrange's and tweeter's mounting flanges are within 1mm on the pod or baffle. There is a formula for the proper minimum center-to-center spacing between the two drivers in relation to their intended X/O frequency, but keeping them as close as possible also minimizes the overall baffle or pod size anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
You could replace your M4 with a M4DSP and you won't loose any more space and add a 10 channel DSP. 馃槈 that's the combo I have and it's excellent.
I looked at the M6 with DSP and it does look tempting. Since I already have the non-DSP version and a separate sub amp, I am leaning towards getting a stand alone DSP. That way I can still use both amps. I have the room to add the DSP if I re-arrange the other two amps. Building another base would also be fine if I needed to. If I didn't already have the non-DSP M6, I would go with the DSP version like you suggested.

Scotty
 

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I looked at the M6 with DSP and it does look tempting. Since I already have the non-DSP version and a separate sub amp, I am leaning towards getting a stand alone DSP. That way I can still use both amps. I have the room to add the DSP if I re-arrange the other two amps. Building another base would also be fine if I needed to. If I didn't already have the non-DSP M6, I would go with the DSP version like you suggested.

Scotty
Lol I confused your M1 with the an M4, they are around the same size. But yea you got the point. Stand alone DSP is probly best. Since you already have Helix amps you should consider a Helix DSP. Preferably one that has the ACO platform.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 · (Edited)
@wsmorton

I would Edit Post #11 above and cut and paste that into your first post. ;)


For a DSP, you might want to consider exchanging/swapping your Helix M SIX for a Helix M SIX DSP, that way it's a "drop-in" replacement and you don't have to add a separate DSP box to your amp rack or additional power & signal wiring. ;)



And yes, the CDT ES-020i are redundant with the Morel Coaxials in the kickpanels and would only cause detrimental comb filtering and lobing...i.e. erractic response that is difficult to EQ.


I posted this in another thread, but there is a very nice sale on a package deal of the Xcelsus XXM325 midrange and XXT30 tweeters on the NonSoloSpeakers website right now that saves over $100 on the combo. They are both fantastic drivers regardless of the price. The combo is around $315 USD Shipped, but changes depending on the Euro/USD exchange rate.

They remove the European VAT and it is basically replaced with the shipping charges. I just ordered this combo again for a buddy's upcoming install and it was ~$312 USD shipped. I've purchased from them multiple times in the past with no issues and had them shipped to SoCal, USA.



But the ScanSpeak Gold 11M with an appropriate tweeter would certainly be very, very good as well. It would offer a bit more SPL capability which you'll generally want for kickpanel installs...

You might also consider the SB Acoustics Satori MR13P-4 for your kickpanels. They are quite a bit deeper and 5.25" drivers, but offer excellent performance if they'll fit, and they are not outrageously expensive...


........
Lots of great info here!!! Thank you!!

I have never heard of those Xcelsus speakers before. They do look like a good setup and the price is reasonable. I would even consider using them in some custom A-pillar pods and forego the kickpanels! :>)

I also have not heard of those SB Acoustics Satori speakers. At 5.25", they might be a little to big to fit, especially if I also needed to fit a tweeter down there. I do think they look great and I know SB Acoustics makes some nice stuff.

I was wondering if those speakers were made for a car's environment. They appear to be made for home audio. Would they hold up over time or would they need to be replace after a few years of high heat, extreme cold and direct sunlight. If they sound really good, then it wouldn't be that bad of a deal and I could live with that.

I think I will get the DSP first and tune the current setup before I invest in some better speakers. After that, I will be buying new speakers. I just haven't finalized in my mind what that setup will be like.

Also, I spent a few months playing around with imaging and is why I went with kickpanels. The imaging was the best with the speakers in the kickpanels. The only thing that I don't like is the stage height. Too low. Others have mentioned the same in other posts. You just can't get a high stage with kicks, in general. But since I didn't have a DSP, that was the only way to get the imaging half way descent. Now that I am looking to get a DSP, I am thinking I could now add a mid and tweeter in the A-pillars and use the DSP to nail down the imaging while maintaining a high stage height. I thought about just adding a tweeter to the A-pillars but without a DSP, it just messes up the imaging, as you mentioned with the tweeter location. So....I'll get the DSP first, tweek my current setup and then look at buying some new speakers to put in the A-pillars.

Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Lol I confused your M1 with the an M4, they are around the same size. But yea you got the point. Stand alone DSP is probly best. Since you already have Helix amps you should consider a Helix DSP. Preferably one that has the ACO platform.
I was told recently that Helix will be coming out with a new version of their MKII Pro, 10 channel DSP sometime soon. I may wait for that drop and pick one up. But I do want to stick with Helix for the DSP. Although....that Misconi 6to8 Aerospace looks good too! :>)

Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Oh! I almost forgot....

I mentioned before that I was wanting a DSP with optical input and was asked why? I plan on using an Android tablet for my music and will buy an adapter to convert the USB audio out to TosLink. I could then switch between my head unit or the tablet. I don't want to try using BlueTooth for streaming HiRes audio files. I haven't had good success with that and I don't like the lag when using the player. I might also play around with Android Auto on the tablet. Hopefully, this will happen after I get the DSP installed and setup.

Scotty
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Sorry for the delay in posting some updates. Got sidetracked with other projects.

On to the soundproofing. I'm putting together several videos that cover the soundproofing of the doors and interior. Below is the first video.

It took me several months of my spare time to finish the entire car. Was it worth it??? For me, there was a small but noticeable reduction in the road noise on the highway. But, I would not do it again if I had known how much trouble it would be. Maybe I needed more material or needed to add another type over the KillMat to make a bigger difference. I don't know. All I know is that the difference was not night and day. So adjust your expectations accordingly.

Scotty

YouTube Video
 
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