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having worked on dozens of E90s 3 series, it was a nice step forward to see a new F30 3 series for us to play with. A big thanks to Ken AKA VPelectricity of MusicarNW for providing valuable insight into the car, its similarities and differences from the E90 to help make this build a smooth one week affair :)

The oem system, sad to say, is a step DOWN from the E90's comparable design, it sounds okay at low to moderate volume, with of course, VERY little bass response below 100hz, but when pushed even a little, the system really falls flat on its face and starts distorting...this made more sense when Ken told me the new OEM amp is a much cheaper chip amp, compared to before and cheaper drivers are used throughout...kinda sad for a new and improved model...but cest la vie

the goals were simple:

1. achieve a much improved overall sound quality than the oem system
2. maintain a totally oem appearance in the interior
3. maintain a mostly oem look in the trunk, with the only space allowed to be taken up being the side cubby space and the infloor storage bin (car has no spare tire oem)

lets get started:

with the mosconi 6to8V8 providing tuning for the system, all adjustments can be done from the front seat using a BT enabled laptop:



the front door midrange and tweeter was replaced with a set of Morel Hybrid 4" two way components, first, two sets of speaker wires were run into the doors, it is of note that unlike the E90, the F30 does not have a big gap around the molex opening in the door to run wires into, instead, it has a round cutout in the molex for that purpose. our man jesse did most of the wiring work in the interior and i took care of the trunk



the wires were ziptied to the oem bundles and run to their respective places:









every cable in the car was run down the driver side, to ensure it stays away from the oem power cable between the alternator and the battery, traditionally a EMI hotbed, it is ziptied and organized every few inches:



to mount the morel hybrid midrange in the stock location, i fabricated this custom spacer, it matches the shape of the oem midrange at the moutning flange, with a rabetted ring ontop to allow the morel to snap direct into, the were then coated with several layers of truck bedliner to protect them against the elements:







the midrange was then installed into the door and the edges sealed with 3m strip caulk, a bit of damper was then used around the midrange to help with resonance. the morel tweeters, just like on the E90s, were a pretty good oem fitment to the stock sail panels:













for the underseat oem woofers, we used a pair of the new and improved gladen oem fitment 8" drivers, these have a different basket and design and also comes with an integrated grille, to prevent debris from falling into the the woofer cone and causing a buzz. the oem underseat enclosures were removed, taken apart and sound proofed, and the gladen drivers installed:







they were then bolted back into the car, wired up using the oem wires (whcih are of pretty significant gauge) and the oem grille installed back in place for seamless stock look:















so thats it for the interior, moving to the trunk. here you see the wiring bundle entire into the trunk and ziptied to the stock bundle:



the oem amp was rmoved, and in its place, i fabricated this simple moutning baffle for the Mosconi 6ot8DSP



this was then installed and wired up:



the customer allowed us to take up the entire storage well so all the wires were then routed into the well, signal on one side, and power/ground from the other side, it should also be noted that we used one of Technic's (a well known provider of bmw integration harnesses on various forums) F30 adapter harness and it worked great :)



 

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so, lets take a look at the finished product, here is the normal view with the trunk open. virtually a stock look except a side fiberglass enclosure with grille on the driver side that matches the cubby space, very little usable trunk space was taken up:





pop off the grille and an audiomobile GTS 2110 10" subwoofer is revealed, the enclosure is roughly .65 cubfeet net sealed. the enclosure was carpeted with trunkliner and then dyed to better match the oem carpet, and is anchored via a single bolt through the back:







pop up the oem floor cover and here is what you see. a flush press fit cover with a grilled cutout fills the oem storage bin, what appears to be a single arc audio XD805 amp is in the middle, but in reality, there are three XDis in that space, a 805 is bridged into a 3 channel and two 804s are also brdiged into 2 channels, sending 200 watts x 6 upfront, and 400 watts to the sub. the xdi amps are chosen for their tiny footprint and price point, and it is my practice that when using class D amps, i overload on power so the amps are run at a very relaxed pace, whcih helps with head build up and SN ratio.











lets take a closer look at the build pics, first the amp rack, which basically was an exercise in somehow fitting three amps, power/ground distribution and all the wiring into a pretty confined space. so this odd looking piece was built, along with the spacer baffle that houses the top amp:





these were then carpeted and dyed to match the oem carpet:



the bottom portion was then bolted in place via two rivet nuts (sorry forgot pics of those) and the bottom 804 amps installed and wired up:



the top board was then secured and the 805 mounted and wired up:



a quick look at all the wiring and distribution that had to be stuffed within the space:





moving onto the subbox, our man Jesse did a great job at making the initial mold from 6 layers of heavy mat:



when that cured, it was removed from the oem carpet and rough trimmed:



after some further trimming and sanding, the back mold is test fitted and rest for the front baffle:



the audiomobile sub with its flush mount ring was them aimed and attached to the back mold:



fleece was pulled, resin applied allowed to cure, and the box was then reinforced from the inside. it was then test fitted and any gaps were backfilled with duraglass, after a final round of sanding, here is the raw uncarpted enclosure:



it was then carpeted and dyed to match the oem carpet. to get an idea of the difference between the original trunkliner and the dyed color, i placed a piece of undyed carpet right infront of the enclosure in the first pic below, it is several shades lighter:





and finally, the amp rack cover before and after carpeting and mesh attachment. the mesh was painted black:





and thats it, sound wise, it s a MAJOR step upfront stock. the car can now effortlessly get loud and stay very linear. the center image is right over the oem center channel grill about eye level, the width is past the pillars, and depth is decent for the locations. the new improved gladen underseat woofers provide a big midbass presence, and the GTS10, the lower priced of the AM's lineup, really impresses, it blends very well upfront and provides a surprising amount of output and extension. these cars, with their fully sealed trunks, really has a hard time getting the bass into the cabin, but it does okay even with the seat up, more than what the customer needs infact, with one side of the backseat flipped down, it REALLY rocks! shaking the rear view mirror and buzzing your hair...great "entry" level sub! overall tonality is also very pleasant as the morels should be, and this being my first newer 3 series stock location build with the mosconi processor, i was quite happy with the overall results i got from the stock mounting points (all previous builds in this type of car had been with the jbl ms8 and an upgraded center channel)

all in all, this car is a similar beast to the E90s as far as stereo upgrades go, the oem midrange mounting, whcih now goes onto the metal door panel, i feel is a big step up from the previous gen whcih mounted to the flimsy door card, but the one big thing is that i feel despite the previous E90 having a pretty disappointing stock setup, the F30 is even worse and thus a bigger improvement can be realized.

cant wait to work on a few more of these :)

cheers,

Bing
 

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Any pictures of the car?
 

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Good job guys! Sucks that BMW is going cheap on the audio systems in the new cars. One would expect a little bit better when you are paying 50K for a new car.

Also I was wondering how many zip ties you go through a month:D
 

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....., and this being my first newer 3 series stock location build with the mosconi processor, i was quite happy with the overall results i got from the stock mounting points (all previous builds in this type of car had been with the jbl ms8 and an upgraded center channel)
Awesome build and always an inspiration. :)

Any viewpoint on ditching the Logic 7 with a center speaker in favor of a more conventional 2-channel setup with less processing?
 

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Discussion Starter #19
When you guys mount that enclosure, you have any resonance in the surrounding panels?
the surrounding carpet is a stiff board with carpet on top. it does not resonate as far as i know. what i did was glass in a bolt from the backside of the oem carpet, and then a washer and nut inside the enclosure, its pretty much rock solid, you see the hole to which the bolt goes through in the picture that is linked above:)
 
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