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with how busy with are, i am severely behind on build logs, so i figured i would take an early sunday and catch...a little. :) especially on the few really simple builds that we have knocked out int he past few months.

So this is the first of these quick logs with less pictures...but hopefully yall can still enjoy it. :) if nothing else these showcase our attention to detail and quality even on very simple projects.

this particular car was a 2000 Lexus LX470, and truth be told, i have rarely seen a car of this age be so immaculate, short of a few very small blemishes, this thing literally could have rolled off the dealer lot last week! :)

the build was very simple but had one pretty strict constraint interms of goals:

1. improve the sound quality of the system while remaining on a modest budget and the front stage run passively

2. maintain a totally stealth and 100 percent oem look on the interior

3. retain all cargo area in the back and the ability to have the rear jump seats in place

this final constraint, coupled with the very modest budget for us meant that we would have to somehow utilize the oem sub enclosure which housed a meager 5.25" driver, it also meant that we cannot come out of the side trim panel by more than an inch or so in order for the jump seat to remain in place...so that took a little head scratching.

the entire build was performed by Jesse.

lets first at this pristine vehicle:





first up jesse fabricated a simple bolt on mount from a piece of metal, and securely located the stinger fuse holder using an oem spot:





then we turn our attention to the headunit, which is a pioneer 2700 basic double din unit:



we also added a pioneer backup camera, stealthily mounted in the rear hatch:





the front stage, as is the norm with us and entry level systems, was a set of morel tempo ultra 6.5" two way components.

first jesse sound proofed the door with a combination of blackhole tiles, step cld damper and stinger foam, and ran new speaker wires into the door:





and then he fabricated a set of adapter panels that matched the oem speaker enclosures bolt holes, with a spacer that allowed the morel driver to clear, and coated them with several layers of truck bedliner to protect them against the elements:



the baffle was then bolted back to the door using oem hardware, and the morel driver installed:



the morel tweeter was simple secured to the oem sail panel housing, but jesse forgot to snap a picture of it :)

the amp location was already determined by the customer before the car was dropped off, as he had fabricated a simple metal plate under the passenger seat, we simply built off of that.

first jesse made a mdf board that will bolt to the metal plate and secure the amp and passive xovers:



he then wrapped it in vinyl and bolted it to the plate using rivet nuts secured in the plate, and all wires were run to that area from both sides of the car:



then a single arc audio xdiv2 600.4 4 channel amp was wired up and installed, along with the morel tempo ultra passive xovers...the front stage gets a healthy 150 watts a piece, while 300 is dedicated to the subwoofer:





finally, its time to move onto the sub install, and as mentioned above, it required some headscratching despite this being a very simple build. the customer was very adamant about not loosing any space, and understood the trade off being not having a lot of bass presence...infact, the install project kinda started with the idea of not running a sub at all but i never really want to do that unless in very special cicumstances as i feel making a 6.5" speaker go all the way down is just a receipe for bad sound and long term unreliability.

so in the end, we were able to install a jl 6w3 into the oem enclosure, and jesse built a nice cosmetic trim panel/grille using the oem sub grille to give it a very elegant and almost stock appearance:







look into the grille and you will see the little jl sub peeking out:




the entire structure only comes out about an inch from the stock panel, as you can see in this picture:



so overall, it blends pretty well and when the jump seat is reinstalled, it will become almost invisible:



some quick build pics:

first, jesse took everything apart and sound proofed the metal behind the encosure space with CLD damper:



next, the oem enclosure was taken apart, and thoroughly sound proofed with cld damper:



then the two halves were rejoined, sealed with silicone, the front face grinded smooth and a new trim ring spacer for the jl sub bolted in place using bolts and nuts... the outside of the enclosure also received some additional CLD, while the enclosure was fully stuffed with blackhole stuff:



the jl sub was then wired up and installed:



and the entire structure bolted back into the vehicle:





then jesse focused his attention onto the rear oem panel. the backside was sound proofed with more CLD to reduce resonance and rattles:



while the oem subwoofer grille was removed, a hole was cut, and a new trim ring glassed onto it and then blended smooth with filler:







jesse then wrapped the new panel with tan vinyl and secured a piece of mesh painted back from the inside:








and finally, this new grille was secured to the oem panel using oem hardware:




so thats it, as simple as it gets schematically for us, but was still an enjoyable challenge figuring the subwoofer solution out :)

now how does it sound? the truth is, with how few passive installs we do, its hard for me to judge any more just how good it is compared to other similar installs, but i do know that these morel tempo ultras really rock regardless if they are run actively and passively...there is hardly any offensive thing about them tonality wise...nice and smooth and airy...with good impact and just a nice sound overall.

as for the sub, well both jesse and I thought we wouldnt be able to even notice the sub, i mean its a 6.5" driver in a giant cavernous suv right? well, when we powered it on, both of us sorta look at each other and went "DANNNNNNGGG!!" :D much to our surprise, this little guy definitely made its presence known. i mean, sure, its not even close to hair ruffling or mirror shaking, but really, it definitely made a huge difference in sound with it running versus without. it filled in the sub 80hz range really well and made for a very nice full sound. and the impact was actually decent on rock and electronica songs. the best way to describe this is like a modest set of home towers with no dedicated subwoofer. everything was very well matched, you dont get a ton of output but the bottom end is nice and full. without the sub, the car sounds more like a set of nice computer desktop speakers...

so yeah, very pleasantly surprised at what this one single little sub can do...its a scenario i doubt many people would ever try, and if not given such strict constraints regarding space and budget, i would liked to have went for at least an 8" sub, but i think this works well and really fits the customers listening tastes.

okay, so thats it for quick log number 1 of today...moving on to the next one. *yawn*

Bing
 

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Nice to see some simple setups like this and the S2k also. I am a big fan of the K.I.S.S. philosophy and am not going to be competing or anything so a single amp setup with front components and 1 10" sub is all i need.

May have to look at these Morels some more.
 

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Nice to see some simple setups like this and the S2k also. I am a big fan of the K.I.S.S. philosophy and am not going to be competing or anything so a single amp setup with front components and 1 10" sub is all i need.

May have to look at these Morels some more.
i really cant get these suckers to sound bad, no matter where or how we run them.
 

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Thanks for the log! I just bought a 2001 LX 470 107,000 miles in pristine condition too!

This is going to be my going out of town car, so I want to keep all 3 rows seating but, I am going to fill the cargo area with stereo equipment with the idea that luggage can go on top of the amp rack in the cargo area.
 
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