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Just finished work on an install for a friend and sort of a neighbor (a few streets over)...an SQ install for his 2003 Honda CR-V daily Driver.

Over the last year or so, we slowly pieced together a somewhat unique combination of components, and finally found time to do it these past coupla weeks.

Let’s get started with the goals:

1. Obtain a decently high level of SQ

2. Maximize the potential of the JBL MS8 processor by incorporating a center channel and using rear surround drivers.

3. build a clean and very sturdy setup in the back that maximizes stealth and trunk space...the car is definitely used frequently, hauling kids and gear around. :)


Onto the build:

The signal starts with a Kenwood KDC X995 single din headunit. The goal is just to have a clean signal source with some good features, such as its built in BT, IPOD/USB and HD radio.

The vehicle was a victim of theft before and the dash is a big mangled, plus in order to create as thin of a center channel mount, we had to relocate the headunit to the bottom of the DD opening. So I customized a dash kit's brackets to fit the HU on the bottom using its own trim ring, and then made a blanking plate on top out of 1/8" plastic:



As mentioned, the car uses a JBL MS8, so the display and an extension cable for the tuning mic are both ran to the glovebox:



The front stage is a combination of Audible Physics XR6 midbass and AR3 widebander. As to why there is a combination of the two lines, there is a back story...but not relevant here :D

the midbass drivers were installed in the stock mid door location, first, the door was sound proofed, speaker mounting hole trimmed out and new speaker wires ran into the door:



next, two 3/4" MDF spacer rings were built and coated with black trunkliner to protect them against the elements:



The ring was then installed onto the door:



And the XR6 wired up and installed:





 

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The AR3 widebanders were molded into the A pillar, wrapped with black grille cloth, with a grill. Because the AR is known as a slightly hotter top-end speaker than the XR, I aimed them a lil more off axis:









There is also a very thin center channel mount, with its own grill:





 

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Here are some build pics for the front stage.

First up are the A pillars.

First the ring baffles are aimed, secured to the stock A pillar:



Next, grille cloth was pulled across the shape, secured down at key points with CA glue to form the desired shape, and resin applied. once that cured, a duraglass/resin milkshake was poured into the interior to make them virtually a solid piece:





Next, filler was applied and the entire shape sanded smooth:







A layer of vibration damper also went into the inside to help with resonance:



Next, the pillars were sprayed black so that no lighter colors would show through the black grill cloth:

 

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Black grille cloth was then attached:





The AR3s wired up and installed:







These are the grilles for the A pillars and the center channel:



Now for the center channel. First a mold was taken of the dash area:



When that cured, the shape was roughly trimmed, and a ring baffle built:



Gradually, the mold was trimmed and sanded to the desired shape, and a hole cutout for the ring baffle to slide through:

 

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the two were then mated together, four bolts were secured to the mold with epoxy, these will act as tiedown studs to secure the pod:





Grille cloth was then pulled, resin applied, allowed to harden, and then duraglass/resin milkshake was poured in via a squeeze bottle to make the inside a solid:



Filler was then applied and sanded smooth:







The pod painted black just like the A pillars:



And wrapped with grille cloth, the Focal coaxial wired up and installed:





A hole was also cut into the top of the dash, and the entire pod sits flush against it...nylon lock nuts button it down and wires connected:

 

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is that flocking on the A pillar?
 

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So that’s it...here is a shot of the entire front stage:



Four quick pics of the wiring bundles as they travel back:









The rear doors already had Focal coaxials installed by the customer (this is hardly the first system the car has seen as he used to work in 12v :)), so they were utilized for rear surround.
 

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Onto the hatch area. As mentioned, the goal is not to be flashy or showy, as it would fit the nature of the car, but just clean and take up very little space.

So here is the view with things covered, up, the customer will be ordering a rubber cargo mat soon to further protect it. The entire floor was only raised by the thickness of a 1/2" MDF...all covered in black carpet. A single cutout in the middle hides all the gear:



Pop off the cover and here is what you seen, actually, this proved to be quite the challenge as I had to fit a single 10" sub, THREE amplifiers, the MS8 and a 2 farad cap all within the confines of the spare tire well :)

So here you see the Arc audio black series 10" sub upfront, and visible are three Audio System X-series (lower line to the Mosconi) amplifiers. Audio System All are trimmed in grey vinyl. The reason the fins of the amps are not visible is because in order to fit all the stuff in there, the back two amps had to be pushed all the way against the back wall, thus leaving no room to show anymore than what I already do. The Floor is VERY sturdy, braced at multiple points and I can sit my ass on it with ease.









Some quick build pics of the trunk. In order to achieve the .65 cubft enclosure AND to fit all the gear, the subbox is quite an interesting contraption. Here it is, its two tiered, with the back doubling a support for the ms8. note that the front is open:



That is because in order to push the sub as far forward as possible, the front panel has to be fiberglassed, so here is the mold being taken after about 10 layers of cloth:



Once that was cured, it was removed, trimmed, and attached to the MDF portion of the box with epoxy and a ton of screws. sealed off with caulk:



A top was then put on and sealed up with filler on the outside and duraglass/resin milkshake on the inside. the top of the box was covered with grey vinyl:

 

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A piece of CCF was stuck to the bottom to prevent any rattles against the metal:



and a 2 farad cap provided by the customer was mounted on the driver side:



The entire assembly was then bolted to the wheel well with four 3/8" bolts, and the MS8 was secured and wired up. you can see two of the bolts here, the other two are inside the subbox:



This is the top cosmetic trim panel before and after vinyl:





The main fake floor panel before and after carpet:





and the breathable grill before and after carpet:



 

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Here is a shot of the wiring of the amps, things are quite tight with so many amps, but I managed to get it all to fit. the big amp at the front is a 160.4 sending 160 watts to each midbass and AR3, the back left amp is a 160.2 bridged powering the sub with 700 plus watts, and the little guy is a 100.2 sending 100 watts to each rear surround. The center channel is powered by the MS8.



So that’s it...only did an initial autotune on it and a quick 15 minute tuning session. the overall sound is quite pleasing. the AR3 has great detail but nowhere near as sharp as I thought it would be. with the CR-V having a very close to the front seating position, the center channel really does wonders for a solid center image. As with my previous installs utilizing the AP widebanders, it’s a very different and welcoming sound with so much of the info coming from above the dash.

Also wanna say a word about the Arc Audio Black series sub...from the looks of it, I thought it was going to be a beefy sounding sub, as it is pretty massive. but to my delight, it blended very well with the music and provides very solid bass output.

I am pretty impressed and will plan on using more of them in the future :)

here is the sub:





Until next time, cheers,

B
 

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Great install, it says a lot about the integrity of the install when it looks as good if not better with the cover off and the wires showing. Awesome job!!
 

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Thank's Bing. The install came out amazing. Can't wait to go play with it and tune it some more and I promise, the next one will not be a Honda ;)
 

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So does that Arc Black still have good output as well (I think you have used IDQ10v3 subs before, how does it compare)? And what size box is it in? Awesome install!!
 

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Nice install Bing! You are playing with my emotions with this install...meaning that Flush Ctr channel and those AP drivers arrrgh! Lol
 
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