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Old 06-08-2009, 03:22 PM   #1
dknydiep
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Callin' the audiophiles. Help me build my next audio setup!

Hey guys,

I would like your opinions and advice on what my setup for the m3 should be. I am looking for a full setup 'round the car, and would prefer 2 x 10" subs. Hopefully there is a stealthy enclosure out there as well.

I am on a moderate budget, meaning I don't want the low end crappy stuff, but also do not want to spend a grip on the setup as well.

So lets see what you guys have to recommend!

Also, will wiring be any different since I currently have the HK system? How difficult is it to hook all of this up to the OEM gps, or do I need an aftermarket deck?

Thanks,
J

Last edited by dknydiep; 06-08-2009 at 03:35 PM.
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Old 06-08-2009, 04:06 PM   #2
98mustangguy
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splice an audio control epicenter plus into speaker wires b4 amp in trunk. out of that into audio control eqt, into an audio control 6xs crossover front/rear/sub set-up. dynaudio components front and rear, 2 JL audio 10w7 sealed box, soundstream picasso amps for front/rear, soundstream tarantula for subs. if you can find older sounstream reference class a amps these or precision power art series rock for mid/highs. this is a budget(mid-mid high) sq set-up. if you want true audiophile it will cost a bit more, as i would add in 2 more crossovers an alpine f1 head unit ect ect.
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Old 06-08-2009, 05:31 PM   #3
BmwAudio32
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For a simpler setup than the one mustangguy recommended, you could do something like this:

Factory Wiring (Splice) ----> Audiocontrol LC6i ----> Soundstream Rubicon 4.600 Amplifier (for speakers) + Soundstream DTR1.900D Amplifier (for subs). I'd recommend running Massive Audio CK5 component speakers (best speakers under 300, imho) for fronts. You have many options for 6.5 rear coax, most will do. For subwoofers, again there are many options, but I'd actually recommend running just one 10 or 12 to maximize truck space and save money. I recommend the Soundstream Tarantula T5-10 subwoofer, it would match well with that amplifier and be all the bass you'd need.

This setup would fall into a pretty reasonable price total and sound great.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:53 AM   #4
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I agree with the tarantula subs, got them in the wifes camaro, paired up with a soundstream tarantula and they sound nuts, but at the same time could blow the t-tops out if i wanted. BTW, whats the price range you are looking to stay in and are you looking for audiophile or just a decent upgrade? Also any eq/crossover/signal proccesser you buy only get audio control, dont waste time/money on anything else.
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Old 06-09-2009, 06:14 AM   #5
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Before recomending.....

I would need to know the type of music you listen to, your budget and what your local stereo shop carries for local support should you need it. One thing is KISS (keep it simple stupid). The more hardware you add the more points of failure there will be. There is no substitution for a great install. A $500 sound system can sound better if installed really well compared to a $ 3k system installed poorly. I personally like my music to sound natural(warm). There are a lot of good stuff out there. I personally like Focal or DLS for my seperates and love JL Audio for my lows. Amps I like JL, Audison, Xtant, and Alpine(price wise). Head units I prefer Pioneer and Alpine. Sound is pretty subjective-the most important is pick the gear that you think sounds best to you since you're the one that's gonna be listening.
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Old 06-09-2009, 04:51 PM   #6
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+1 Need to know what you listen to.... Need to also know what you expect. You honestly don't need 2 of any W7's, unless you want stupid bass, that you will have to make up for double in highs to actually HEAR the music side of what you are listening to. Amps, again, like stated before are key, slash series JL's are always a good choice. I wouldn't go to an unecessary level of sound processors if it isn't necessary, a good installer that can tune the system well to your needs makes a HUGE amount of difference. If you do go to the sound processor level I would consider something in the Alpine PXA linup, but it's just something else to let mechanical noise into the system since it sounds like you may be keeping the factory nav, therefore won't necessarily have a clean signal. I ran an eclipse DVD, optical to a PXA-H510, and it was amazing. Tell me more and I can pretty much give the formula for a mobile concert hall.

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Originally Posted by 2dxtreme View Post
I would need to know the type of music you listen to, your budget and what your local stereo shop carries for local support should you need it. One thing is KISS (keep it simple stupid). The more hardware you add the more points of failure there will be. There is no substitution for a great install. A $500 sound system can sound better if installed really well compared to a $ 3k system installed poorly. I personally like my music to sound natural(warm). There are a lot of good stuff out there. I personally like Focal or DLS for my seperates and love JL Audio for my lows. Amps I like JL, Audison, Xtant, and Alpine(price wise). Head units I prefer Pioneer and Alpine. Sound is pretty subjective-the most important is pick the gear that you think sounds best to you since you're the one that's gonna be listening.
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Old 06-09-2009, 07:41 PM   #7
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first off install it yourself, you would be crazy to pay someone. second sound is subjective, but saying audiophille, automatically says i want the best. third if you want audiophille or true comp sq type set-up, you must have processors or passive coils crossovers ect. speakers you need to listen too everyone likes different sound, but they will not sound exactly the same in-shop/in-car. amps for mid/high lok for a class a or ab pay attention to thd%. cant go wrong with jl,soundstream,precision power, phoenix gold, xtant, alpine amps. subs try looking for a class d, basically a give best sound quality-d gives highest output turnaround on power input. run your ground wires to your negative battery dont ground to chassis, this will eliminate alot of possible noises. speakers boston acoustic, mb quart reference series, dynaudio, cdt, jl audio, kicker pro, polk, vifa, rainbow, diamond are some brands i would suggest you go LISTEN to. take your favorite cd with you to shop and pop it in the shops cd player, wont be the same as in your car but you will get an idea of what speaker qualities you like. price can change alot depending on your ears, volume level you like, type of bass and strength of bass you want ect. in all your best bet is to go listen. like highs for instance some like high tinny some hate it ect, so you could get 100 opinions buy it and get something that sounds crappy to you, is too loud, too boomy, not enough punch ect.
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Old 06-09-2009, 07:48 PM   #8
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If you are on a moderate budget Alpine does have good products on all lines except S-type. You could go with 2 R-type 10's and all around speakers with a amp and be good to go(head unit could be optional but would be highly suggested). But like everyone else had said its more personal opinion and it matters to what you listen to. Infiniti hit nice as well. There is a decent box here:http://www.zenclosures.com/BMW_3_Ser...p/bmw39905.htm.
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Old 06-09-2009, 10:26 PM   #9
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Don't forget the sound deadening and electrical system.

You should get a decent sealed battery. As a guide, I've got a Kinetik HC2000 which is a little much for most applications. Unless you play music with the car off, go for something that can charge/discharge quickly. Most AGM (absorptive glass mat) batteries will work great.

I would deaden most of the common problem areas like the trunk lid, rear deck, and quarter panels.

I would recommend going with an active front stage. You spend a little more on amps but you'll save on headaches and money for crossover components. Most crossovers that come with components are simple and poor. There is a tremendous difference between an active front stage and a poorly designed passive network. Passive crossovers take a lot of trial and error.

I would go with at least a good quality 500 watt amp for your subs unless you want a true audiophile system. Then you can go with less.

If possible, I'd audition any component set you are considering in person...preferably installed in a car. Most shops will have some sort of personal or demo car. That will also tell you what they REALLY think about a certain model of speaker.

I'd suggest checking out the Zapco reference speakers. Not the cheapest but they sure do sound great!
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Old 06-10-2009, 12:32 AM   #10
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He did state that he didn't want to spend a grip, so sound processors are out. Yes, for true "audiophile" type of setup, I agree, but, you can get a great setup without a processor... Clean dry deck, with great amps, proper placement, and someone who knows how to tune it all and you can have a very clean sounding setup. OP, I see your from San Jose, I know the Cali kick of audio shops, just be careful because it seems like every shop is staffed with the same 17 year old installers, and 25 year old sales guys that will knock all the good brands and try to tell you that some audiophonic BS "is best speaker on market" don't fall for it. Remember most people in the bay want "Dat Slap" and so shops stock up for that and not SQ. I run Diamond Audio personally, the S600 lineup, just prefer it over the new stuff.... BTW I'm selling about $3500 worth of amps for , sub and highs, JL W7 BTW! for CHEAP I did have it setup with a PXA-H510 Processor and Eclipse dry deck running optical, that part got stolen so until I get a different job where my car isn't parked at the mall everyday (T-Mobile Employee) I will not be installing it in the E46, I don't want it to get ripped up like my Mark 8 did. I'm letting it go VERY cheap, Very Very cheap if your interested.

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Originally Posted by 98mustangguy View Post
first off install it yourself, you would be crazy to pay someone. second sound is subjective, but saying audiophille, automatically says i want the best. third if you want audiophille or true comp sq type set-up, you must have processors or passive coils crossovers ect. speakers you need to listen too everyone likes different sound, but they will not sound exactly the same in-shop/in-car. amps for mid/high lok for a class a or ab pay attention to thd%. cant go wrong with jl,soundstream,precision power, phoenix gold, xtant, alpine amps. subs try looking for a class d, basically a give best sound quality-d gives highest output turnaround on power input. run your ground wires to your negative battery dont ground to chassis, this will eliminate alot of possible noises. speakers boston acoustic, mb quart reference series, dynaudio, cdt, jl audio, kicker pro, polk, vifa, rainbow, diamond are some brands i would suggest you go LISTEN to. take your favorite cd with you to shop and pop it in the shops cd player, wont be the same as in your car but you will get an idea of what speaker qualities you like. price can change alot depending on your ears, volume level you like, type of bass and strength of bass you want ect. in all your best bet is to go listen. like highs for instance some like high tinny some hate it ect, so you could get 100 opinions buy it and get something that sounds crappy to you, is too loud, too boomy, not enough punch ect.
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Old 06-12-2009, 01:29 PM   #11
dknydiep
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Thanks for the replies guys.

As for the type of music, I usually listen to hip hop/rnb, rap, top 40 with the occasional slowjam. I just want really clean sound as opposed to just LOUD. I'd say my budget is around 1000-1500 depending on what I can find. Also, I will be installing everything myself, as I did in my other car. Would there be any benefit to running my own wires compared to just splicing the oem wires?

I would greatly prefer to use my OEM navi as the headunit, but will this compromise quality? Does the Oem navi have direct outputs, or will I need a new harness and/or splice the current wires. I forgot to mention I have the HK system if that even matters.

I would also prefer to buy everything online, as it is usually cheaper. Any site recommendations?

My other car has Alpine type r components 6.5, and 6x9's in the rear. It also has a ported 12" type r as well, with a pioneer amp for the speakers and alpine amp for the sub. (very cheap when i worked at best buy). The sound is decent, but i want something even cleaner. The 12" was loud, but not very clean, although I do like a lot of bass. Would a high quality single 10" be sufficient? The reason i wanted 10" x 2 was for a loud, yet clean bass.

I appreciate all the replies guys. I hope to get the show on the road soon, especially since I like to take my time and make the install 100% clean.

Also, do any of you guys have pics of your trunk setup?

Thanks e46 fam.
J

Last edited by dknydiep; 06-12-2009 at 01:47 PM.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:05 PM   #12
98mustangguy
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http://www.crutchfield.com/p_065SX60...60.html?tp=105
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_065SX50...owAll=N&tp=105
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_108R475...5a.html?tp=115
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_136P112...owAll=N&tp=112
http://www.crutchfield.com/p_5758P30...-2.html?tp=115
just looked here you could do better but dont have time to browse around too much atm. this is 1300 add wires ect and your within your budget. all these are nice budget components i like the speakers ect not the best in the world, but very nice for your budget, boston makes some very nice speakers. and the ported jl box with the fosgate amp will give you a nice amount of kick without being overwhelming. if i had time as im sure someone will to look around on some other sites you could prob build a lil bit better for a few dollars less, but imo you shouldnt be dissappointed with these.(fyi crutchfields selection is not too large) if you look at woofersect or some other site you will find alot of other options. you could do custom as well but i feel it would go outside your budget fairly quickly.
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Old 06-12-2009, 03:16 PM   #13
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2x10 is not really needed, you could go with single 12 or 13 and bigger amp and save a lil space in the trunk. problem with going too much though is once you hit a certaint amount of bass you have to have a certaint amount of mid/high as well to sound well balanced, this can start to add to the price tag. if you want loud clean bass i will suggest a jl audio w7 in their factory made tuned h.o. box and a nice soundstream amp (some will disagree lol) this would be a very loud accurate set-up but then comes the mids/highs ect ect ect and of course $$$$$$$$$$$$$$.
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