DiyMobileAudio.com Car Stereo Forum banner

1 - 20 of 50 Posts

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Quite a few months ago, when the newly minted Illusion audio (Illusion Audio) products were just starting to come on line, I was approached by a senior sales manager at ORCA Design (ORCA Design & Manufacturing) about building a demo vehicle for him. Right away, when I heard the words demo car, I was thinking show car with products and glitz everywhere...not my usual cup of tea; but immediately, I realized this wasn’t going to be that type of project.

The car, a current gen 2009 Scion Xb, is his daily driver, and the goals are:

1. to achieve a nice level of sound quality with illusion audio and Mosconi products in order to showcase them to current and potential dealers. It will also attend sound quality meets and comps to just be part of the community.

2. All the products need to be visible as it is a marketing tool for potential dealers.

3. The hatch area still needs to be stealthy and usable in order for products to be carried on sales trips.

4. Maintain a simple and classy theme in line with the brand quality and daily driven nature of the vehicle.

So...let’s get started.

first a few quick shots of the car itself, not much has been done to it, other than being lowered and on rims, I actually really like how the rear tires fill the well...and not an ounce of rubbing anywhere during my test drives:







Needless to say, ORCA supplied all the products :D

The signal starts with a Kenwood 9990 nav/dvd all in one headunit...installed in the stock location:



The iPod and USB cables were routed to the glove box:



And I added a simple push off/release on momentary switch to a blank panel to serve as the bypass switch. This design is very simple and reliable and works with any Kenwood, pioneer and Sony units, just push it once and off you go.





The car of course, uses a Mosconi 6to8DSP for tuning, and all adjustments are done from the front seat using a Bluetooth enabled laptop:



So, moving onto the front stage.

We chose to go with a 3 way set consisting of the Carbon C6 midbass, C4 midrange, and tweeter.

The midbass were installed in the stock lower door location but with a twist. As mentioned before, the idea is that the drivers need to be visible at all times for marketing purposes....even though as you'd imagine, with how shallow the speakers are, they can fit behind the oem door car with zero issues.

So I approached the door build in the same manner I would if the speaker was too deep to fit behind the door card; that is to build it out, and then mold a front trim ring onto the door card.

So here is what the final results look like, with a ring wrapped in graphite Alcantara:











 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #2
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

This may look pretty simple, but actually involve a bit of work, as the area underneath the ring is by no means flat....here are the builds pics of the doors.

First a set of focal 13 gauge speaker wires were run into the doors:



Then the outer door skin was lined with Focal Blackhole Tile to reduce resonance and backwaves:




Then, the entire inner door skin was treated with a layer of Focal's new BAM XXXL sound proofing mat

Now a quick word on this product... I LOVE IT!. What it basically is, is a vibration damper CLD on the bottom and a CCF layer on top, bonded together, flexible, and easy to use. Now the tech details I am sure are a lil different, but essentially, that’s what I feel it does for me. It saves me a ton of time and provides superb results.

I would say you can expect me switching to this product almost exclusively in the future, no more need to do separate CLD and CCF on door skins etc. :)

BAM XXXL kit d'isolation acoustique



At this point, I cut out the grille portion from the stock plastic door card...I know this is the passenger side door, but I forgot to take one of the driver hehe



next, spacer rings were fabricated to space out the Illusion C6 midbass to be flush with the door card...this of course, took quite a bit of measure to get just right:





These were then treated with 3 coats of truck bedliner to protect them against the elements:



Then, I punched out the stock rivet holes for the midbass and installed 3 rivet nut inserts:



And the spacer baffle was bolted in place:



Next, the C6 midbass were installed onto the baffle:





Here you see the pre-cut door card test fitted to the car, and you see the spacing is just right so the speaker is perfectly flush with the opening in the plastic:



The same process was then repeated on the passenger side door:

















 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

Now that I got both drivers secured and properly aligned, it’s time to build the trim ring. from the previous pic, you can see that the area around the speaker opening has quite a bit of rise to them, so a base mold has to be taken first, so here is both sides after receiving 6 layers of fiberglass cloth:



After the molds cured and pulled off the car, they were trimmed to the desired shape:



And then I epoxied bolts into them to serve as studs for mounting:



I then fabricated two rounded rings and secured them to the base mold:



Any gaps were filled in with duraglass and filler and soon, I ended up with a solid one piece shape with studs coming out of them:





They were then wrapped with Alcantara:



The inside of the door card also received its own layer of BAM XXXL and the rings were bolted in place with washers and nuts on the inside:



A close up of the washers, lock washers and nuts, any excess bolt was buzzed off:



And what it looks like from the front:





The same procedure done on the passenger side door card:







 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

Moving onto the midrange and tweeter. From the get go, the idea was to do A pillar pods for them. The two main difficulties were; one, the oddly shaped instrument shroud that runs down the left side of the dash...it means whatever I mold had to clear that to avoid unwanted reflections, and two, as with most 4" drivers, the outer mounting flange makes them almost 5" wide, which in turns makes for a pretty big mounting pod.

So my goal was to make it sound good but not at cost of making them look too ugly and bulky, In other words, I don’t want the potential dealers to say, oh you need to have them in such huge ass pods to sound good? :D it is a delicate balance for sure, as the pods are of course gonna be rather large, but hopefully, they won’t look TOO large with how I built them.

So here they are, wrapped in grey vinyl, aimed essentially at the rear view mirror area, with the tweeter aimed slightly less upward than the midrange; during initial listening tests, what I noticed was that with the tweeter on the same angle, the stage was to me, a bit too high, above the rear view mirror and on some songs, seemed to be in the ceiling as the car has such a short windshield and tall roof. So I angled them less than the mid to lower the stage to around rear view mirror level. There is also an Alcantara trim around the midrange to hide the flanges.

I am quite proud of the fact that I was able to wrap this shape in a single piece of vinyl with no seams. A few stretch marks here and there, but to me that is better than seams and stitching :)

A note on the use of Alcantara in the car. After this build, the car is going to have the interior redone using the same color stuff on many of the internal surfaces. Hence why it’s done even though it doesn’t match much of the car at the moment :)



Still love the Beryllium copper tweeter:



Close up of the speakers with the trim ring on:



And off, showing the speaker itself with its mounting flanges, sitting on another ring trimmed in the same Alcantara:



Passenger side:









Here are the build pics for the pillars:

First, the midrange mounting rings were aimed and secured to the pods:





Then mold cloth was pulled, resin applied, allowed to cure, and then reinforced from the inside with a duraglass/resin mixture. Then the whole pod was trimmed and sanded:





Then the tweeter mounting baffles were aimed individually and secured to the shapes:





The shapes were then smoothed and blended in with duraglass and filler, to make them into a single smooth flowing pieces...but as you can see, quite a lot of drastic angles to wrap with vinyl:







Then came the hard part, the vinyl. In know that to have a chance in hell, I needed very stretchy stuff, namely, allsport 4 way stretch...but it doesn’t come in a grey matching the interior, so I chose the next closest color, silver. After quite a bit of pulling, mission accomplished! Both pods wrapped in one piece!





The interior of the pods were lined with BAM XXXL as well:



And here are the trim rings that will be wrapped in Alcantara for the speakers to sit on:



Next, the pods were dyed to more closely match the factory interior using SEM Medium Grey, here are the finished results with the two rings wrapped in Alcantara:



A quick look at the Illusion Audio Carbon C4 midrange...not a front motor design but still very cool:





 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

The speakers were then installed into the pod and wired up. The midrange pod, as you saw, is sealed and separated from the tweeter cutout:







And finally, these are the rings that will be wrapped in Alcantara to sit on top of the speakers:



A final look at the front pods from three different angles:







Next comes the wiring pics, showing bundles on both sides neatly organized, secured to the car every 4-6 inches, and traveling from the front all the way to the back:

Driver side first with rca cables, remote turn on, and driver side speaker cables:

















Passenger side with main power cable and speaker wires:













 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

So, moving onto the hatch area...again the idea is to show case the products, but also to keep it fully usable.

So here is the normal view, a new trunk mat is going to be made up soon to cover the entire floor but for now, you can see that the floor has not been raised a single inch...everything is at stock height and orientation:



Remove the OEM cargo mat, and here is what you see, a new fake floor wrapped in graphite Alcantara with three breathable grilles done in black trunk liner. I use trunk liner rather than grille cloth because it is far more durable for daily usage:



Lift off the covers and here is what you see. Two Mosconi AS amps and two Illusion Audio Carbon C10 slim subwoofers reside in view. All trimmed in the same dyed vinyl as the front pillars…this maintaining the consistency of the grey vinyl/graphite alcantara combo.

The amps are both 200.4s, providing 200x6 active to the front stage, and 1000 watts to the two subs at 2ohms mono. The subs themselves reside in a sealed enclosure of about 1.5 cub ft.











A closer look at the cutouts to verify precision of fit and finish:







And some shots from higher up and further back:



 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
4,981 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Re: Demo Vehicle for Illusion Audio/ Mosconi - 2090 Scion Xb

Build pics of the trunk, which was actually the easier part of the project compared to the front stage.

Here is the sub enclosure, measuring only 4" or so tall but about 34x32. With a top portion to space the subs up:





6 rivet nuts were installed into the floor to anchor the box and everything else attached to it. Two additional rivet nuts on the passenger side will serve to secure the stinger grounding lug:





And here is the subbox secured to the car:





These are the left and right spacer platforms for the amps:



Here is the main cosmetic trim panel before and after vinyl:





And dyed with SEM to match:



The top fake floor before and after Alcantara:









And the breathable grilles before and after carpet:





And finally, various shots of the wiring organization, here you can also see where the 6to8 was tucked away:

















So...how does it sound?

In a word, excellent. Even though we are still in the very initial stages of tuning with no speaker break in, I feel the car has a lot of potential.

As with all my recent illusion audio builds, what stands out to me is that nothing is super wrong even without ANY EQ adjustments on it. To me, this always a good trait to start with.

To verify what I am hearing, I saved this image of the frequency response, WITHOUT subwoofer, ZERO time alignment, ZERO EQ, and only initial xover settings. Of course the open nature of the car helps, but anyone who has looked at lot of initial curves prolly would agree, this is a pretty nice plot for what it is:



After a few hours of adjustments, these are my initial impressions:

Tonality: overall very good, very open airy and smooth yet with great detail, again, they always remind me of how the Seas Lotus references sound.

Subbass: the 2xc10s were crossed at 60hz, and they easily fill the cabin with their output, extension is effortless down to 20hz, and well anchored upfront.

Midbass: this continues to impress me with the carbons...for a 6.5" driver they like to go low, has no problem with a 60hz high pass, and provides a lot of punch with no audible distortion. Great impact as well.

I have to keep on reminding me that they are not really shallow drivers, but just backwards (thanks to cobb for point that out to me)

Midrange: Overall very smooth and good resolution, though I think I need a bit more time to fully adjust them a bit more...mainly I think I need to lower their gains a lil.

Highs: once again, I LOVE these tweeters, not metal sounding AT ALL! detailed, airy and very smooth, not in the buttery nature of say a Morel tweeter, but never harsh and very enjoyable.

Width: pillar to pillar on most songs, on Diana Krall's "pick yourself up" the last of the initial opening tinker bells appears to be outside of the pillar on the driver side.

Height: hovering at or slightly below the rear view mirror

Depth: this is a tough one to call because of the height, I think the depth is easily at the windshield or beyond, but for me, when listening to cars with height I always look at the rear view mirror and my attention tend to be drawn backwards, I think I need a second set of ears on this one.

Center image: excellent and stable, though it’s hard to judge with this car because other than the rear view mirror, there are no other CENTER markers anywhere on the dash :) I think it can get even better with more tuning.

so here is the plot I took before I dove in for final adjustments by ear...not too bad:



I am sure with additional tuning from the folks at ORCA, this car will sound quite nice...and I hope it will make it out to meets and comps down in SoCal for others to listen and help tune.

Special thanks go out to the folks at ORCA for giving me this opportunity, my rep Scott always for his support and Nick (mitsu1grn) for his tuning tips.

Now time to drive her back down to SoCal. So won’t be able to respond to questions for most of the day.

Cheers!

Bing
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,170 Posts
Cool job with the demo car...that has to be good for business lol.

BTW, what are these rivet nuts?

I'm getting some Zapco inverted motor 6.5s, I wonder how they compare to the Illusions?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,600 Posts
i dont know what happened, but my post got deleted or something. stupid work computer with IE7.

anyway - i would have made rings on the door thinner, match them up with the rings on the midrange pillar. they just look real fat or something. kind of a strange thing the first time i looked at it. otherwise it looks great as usual bing. its funny, every time i see your work i feel like the caliber of work is the same and i cant give you any more praise that hasnt been said. it is almost mundane that you do so well :)

i wish they would find a way to shrink the stupid mounting flanges of the midrange. i feel that if the speaker had a ring with flushmount screws, and the driver locked into this ring, that you could keep the outer diameter of the speaker to the minimum while retaining the speaker size... because those stupid mounting flanges are way to bulky for the speaker size.

the one thing i dont like about pillar pods, is that the bottom edge never gets rounded - just a 1\2" roundover would fix it - and when people stretch cloth over them it is easy to see the 'edge' formed, as in this picture.



i dunno why it bugs me so much :p

you also should fill in the stock tweeter location. it looks silly with an extra tweeter hehe :)


and mic - todd told me about riv-nuts a while back. i used them for my amp rack. *shrug*
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,737 Posts

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,737 Posts
Overall, very nice as usual. Im not fond of the rings around the door midbass. looks out of place bc of the bulk added. If they were thinner more like the Pillar pods, then Yeh It would be fine

Maybe its the photo but that looks like at least a 1/2" or 3/4" total thickness trim ring
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
435 Posts
Good looking install Bing! I'm planning on starting on an Illusion demo car of my own at the first of the year. ORCA will have both coasts covered ;O)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,014 Posts
Nice. I like....

On a semi-related note, we had the Touareg back in the shop to troubleshoot an issue (that seems to be with the 6to8, but I'll have to check into it more to be sure). I opened up the 6to8 to make sure the RCA input connectors were still soldered to the board, and found that Mosconi left a little message on the circuit board for copycats. lol.

Gotta love a company with a sense of humor.

Wish I could see more of this product in my area.
Right now, just living vicariously through Bing.

Jay
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
435 Posts
Nice. I like....

On a semi-related note, we had the Touareg back in the shop to troubleshoot an issue (that seems to be with the 6to8, but I'll have to check into it more to be sure). I opened up the 6to8 to make sure the RCA input connectors were still soldered to the board, and found that Mosconi left a little message on the circuit board for copycats. lol.

Gotta love a company with a sense of humor.

Wish I could see more of this product in my area.
Right now, just living vicariously through Bing.

Jay
Yea. I love showing that little ditty to my clients. They all get a kick out of it. Can't stand Chinese made crap and neither can Mosconi. I like that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
914 Posts
On the pillar pods, how did you get the fabric stretch over the tape rings? I would think tape would be too flimsy on its own to support stretching material around it.
 
1 - 20 of 50 Posts
Top