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hey guys,

this is about as barebones of an install log as it gets and we usually dont post up a log of something this small, but i think its important to recognize the good work Jesse and Julia have been doing, showcase the fact that even though this is a very basic job, it is still done to the same standard as our bigger builds...plus we got to use a new product and i wanted to do a very basic review on it :)

the car is a 2010 BMW e92 328i with the base system.

goals:

1. obtain a much better sonic performance than the stock system

2. keep things as oem and hidden as possible, including the trunk install

for the purposes of this build, we went with the Gladen Audio BMW 201 plug and play system. i have long wanted to try it out as i have heard the previous generation 200 set on a few occasions and they sounded pretty good. the underseat woofers i have installed dozens of times with good results, and with the new shallower morel 4" midranges still a few weeks out, this was as good of an opportunity as any to do an install with them.

also wanted to give Ken aka vpelectricity from musicarnw, the industry's leading bmw expert, on all his tips and advice on setting up the car :)

this was a collaborative effort between Jesse and Julia, Julia built the side fiberglass enclosure while Jesse handled the rest of the build.

so here are some quick shots of the oem replacement plug and play speakers that make up the bmw 201 system.

the tweeters:





the 4" midrange:







and the 8" underseat woofers, note sound proofing in the oem enclosures and also around the door midrange:





Jesse then taped the signal at the underseat woofer terminals and ran the cables back, the power cable came from the passenger side mounted battery, and everything follows oem bundles and is ziptied and secured every few inches:





Another piece of the puzzle that enabled quite a decent amount of power to be hidden away in this car is the new arc audio xdiv2 1200.6...with its onboard bandpass filters, this amp powers the front door speakers passively with 150 watts a side, from 250hz up, the underseat woofers with 150 watts a piece, going from 80 to 250hz, and the subwoofer with 600 watts going 80hz down. it is mounted to a vinyl wrapped board that has been bolted to the floor of the car with rivetnuts:





onto the finished look of the trunk. as mentioned, the idea was for things to be as hidden as possible...to that end, the normal view of the trunk shows only a fiberglass side enclosure, it has been carpted with trunkliner and dyed slightly ligher to better match the oem carpet. nothing else is visible:





pop off the grille and you see a single audiomobile gts 2110 10" subwoofer, well suited for the sealed enclosure of roughly .6 cubic ft:











the only other semi visible part of the build was a JL audio 441dsp signal flattening device, mounted under the oem floor well towards the front of the trunk, again, Jesse did a good job of make sure the wiring is tidy and clean:



a few build pics of the sub enclosure by Julia.

first, the area was taped off fully, the bottom floor of the enclosure cut out of 3/4" mdf. it was laid in place, and the back edges filled with filler, this ensures a smooth transition from the mold to the mdf floor panel and prevents excess resin from leaking down:



6 layers of heavy mat then went on to form the back side of the enclosure, when that cured, the entire structure was lifted out and then trimmed. it was then placed back the car for a test fitting:





the mounting ring baffle was the aimed and attached:



mold cloth was pulled, resin applied, reinforced by an additional 5 layers of mat:



then filler was applied and the entire shape sanded smooth:



finall, the box was test fitted in the car one final time, any excess gaps backfilled and sanded smooth:





here is the breathable grille that julia made:



and finally, the subbox and grille, both carpeted and dyed:



so thats it...as simple as it gets for us...

the sonic difference though, is night and day. the base bmw system of this car was quite bad...and the owner right away mentioned that he noticed a dramatic improvement all around.

the bmw201 system is pretty impressive...installation is straightforward, i would say more labor was needed to diassemble the car to get to those locations than the actual installation process. the underseat woofers, despite how lightweight they are, produces a LOT more midbass output than before. i have used these drivers as sub-midbasses before, and i think they do better as more or less dedicated midbasses, they provide a nice and easy transition down to around 50-60hz, and can reach up to the 200hz or so with no issue to join with the midrange. impact is plentiful as well and i noticed that despites its terrible location, it doesnt seem to pull the stage down much when low passed around 200hz.

the 4" midrange and tweeter combo was surprisingly good. without much, if any tuning options on this build, the key was to have a nice and natural speaker out of the box...and this is exactly what it was. Nothing stood out, no harshness in the midrange or highs, no excess SSSS in the female vocals, just nice natural and smooth with good resolution and detail. I listned to my demo disc over and over again after a single calibration run with the cleansweep and honestly, i cannot pick too many faults with it.

For those of you with late model BMWs and want a simple and effective plug and play option for a real noticable improvement in SQ...i would really suggest giving these a shot. I think these will be our go to speakers from no on for basic late model bmw upgrades :)

cheers,

Bing
 

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Nicely done.
 

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Clean build a usual, I need to improve my skills in making nice subs enclosures like you guys do

My 2 cents but be careful when you say Plug and play speakers. They are not. I had a sollicitor who bought Gladen speakers from me for his 535d F10, he gave me a hard time.

Also why the use of the JL Audio device to flatten the eq curve instead of coding?
I know Musicar NW gave some feedback before around this particular issue but I can't remember what they were saying.
To me flattening the eq curve takes 2mn by coding so it is hard to justify adding a device to do that.

Just my 2 cents
 

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Also why the use of the JL Audio device to flatten the eq curve instead of coding?
I know Musicar NW gave some feedback before around this particular issue but I can't remember what they were saying.
To me flattening the eq curve takes 2mn by coding so it is hard to justify adding a device to do that.

Just my 2 cents
One of the main issues I have with recoding is that every time there is a vehicle software update performed at service the recode work is eliminated, so depending on how frequently the vehicle goes to the dealer, it will be back at your shop also.
 

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One of the main issues I have with recoding is that every time there is a vehicle software update performed at service the recode work is eliminated, so depending on how frequently the vehicle goes to the dealer, it will be back at your shop also.
Yeah got you, valid point in a way I agree. But a rare instance in my opinion.

Right but many of the E cars do not have any new update since the last while now.
E6x for instance, the last update is from 2012, once the car is flashed to the latest integration level, you can't flash it again, the BMW program will not let you. BMW does not release updates often, at least for the E series.
And when they do, it mainly involves 1 or 2 modules at best.

As for avoiding losing custom settings, the HIFI option should be coded at the VO level instead of the radio itself.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
the way i understood it, if i recoded the car for line output, being that its a non amplified car, i would loose the oem rear speakers that were driven off the headunit. is that true or are you thinking it can be recoded for line output front, and speaker level rear?
 

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the way i understood it, if i recoded the car for line output, being that its a non amplified car, i would loose the oem rear speakers that were driven off the headunit. is that true or are you thinking it can be recoded for line output front, and speaker level rear?
You are correct in your thinking.
 

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holy crap, i am gonna quote that all over the place that jacob said i was right about something! :D :D :D:eek:

In all fairness, you didn't mention anything about retaining the factory rear speakers. Had that been the case, recoding would probably not have been mentioned at all.
 

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the way i understood it, if i recoded the car for line output, being that its a non amplified car, i would loose the oem rear speakers that were driven off the headunit. is that true or are you thinking it can be recoded for line output front, and speaker level rear?
Indeed they would play very low
In my opinion when dealing with those newer bmw and when they have the basic sound system or even hifi from factory should get 6 channels. 4 channels amp for each corner and a 2 channels one for the mid bass drivers. Or 2 x 4 channels if you want a sub in the trunk.

Have you tried the Gladen M line amps? Very good value for class AB amps and very capable.
 

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Have you tried the Gladen M line amps? Very good value for class AB amps and very capable.
We do not import the M-Line of amplifiers into the US. The newest toys we have to play with are the new FD amps.
 

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We do not import the M-Line of amplifiers into the US. The newest toys we have to play with are the new FD amps.
Have been there alright. I like the compactness of the latest products Including the Mosconi D2 But class AB amps is my preference For a few reasons
 
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