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Old 01-03-2010, 11:30 AM   #1
tnhl1989
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Installing amp and subwoofer

I just purchase a 2002 BMW 330xi. I dont like the HK system but want to keep the headunit. I eventually want to replace everything however at the moment I am going to add a amp and subwoofers. My questions are

1. What wires would I tapped into and where for the RCA line out converters?
2. Would I need anything else for this installation?
3. Should I cut up the oem amp and reconnect the wires to a sound processor with 5 channels?
4. Would I need another amp for the speakers?
5. Anyone has any other suggestions?
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Old 01-03-2010, 02:56 PM   #2
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1. read through this thread, you'll be using pins 8, 16, 29, & 37. those are the wires for the rear output, which is what most people tap for subwoofer signal--it allows some control of the bass by fading to the rear.

2. you need to determine if you have/will be getting an amplifier that takes balanced input or not since the head unit puts out balanced differential signal rather than the more common unbalanced signal. most amps are starting to be able to accept this kind of input and having one will simplify the installation.

3. your sound processor would need to put out balanced signal for the stock amp to work with it, and since most sound processors exist to send a clean, unbalanced signal to amps, it would probably be hard to come by a sound processor that would work for your install. having one when you decided to go all the way would be nice though...

4. you could use a 4 channel amp to power the cabin speakers, and another mono for the subs; you could also use a five channel amp (the PDX-5 by Alpine gets great reviews); or you could wire up the front two speakers on two channels of a four channel amp, and bridge the other two channels for subs, using the stock amp to power the rear fill. there are a lot of combinations, but most people either do a five-channel or a mono + four-channel.

5. you'll enjoy the increase in bass, but the entire speaker/amp side of the stock and HK systems are quite weak, and you'll ultimately want more. if you can drop the cash, do it all at once to simplify the install, run cable only once, etc...

another thing of note is that if the boot in e46's are very isolated from the cabin, so unless you have some kind of port opening (or open ski-pass) to allow the sound to travel into the cabin, you'll want at least two 10's or a good 12 to get the kind of thump most people like to have.... i have two 8's and love them, but don't listen to much bass-heavy music.
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Old 01-03-2010, 06:54 PM   #3
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Thanks a lot Orion329.

Well I will be adding two 12" MTX JH5512-X2D in a MTX Bass Slammer BS212S Enclosure. Along with a MTX JackHammer JH600 Mono Subwoofer Amplifier. However, I'm not really sure what you mean by unbalance and balance inputs. But as of now that's the plan is to install these with a RCA line converter. I did refer to that thread prior to posting this and continue to have questions about changing the HK system. My other questions are

1. would I tap into the wires that are going to the amp and split them to go to two connections or just route them to the amplifier.
2. the sound processor i was looking at is MTX re-Q5 5-channel processor. Where would this go as far as wiring a whole new system. Would the order be head unit, processor, amps, speakers/subs?
3. should I follow the thread and unwire everything like he showed?

I also don't have a ski-pass or port opening i believe. Also in the thread he doesn't really state where he got the panel. Would you happen to know that could be purchase at?
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Old 01-04-2010, 12:23 AM   #4
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1. you need to use a wire tap or some other means of grabbing the signal off of the lines from the head unit to the amp. they are for rear left/right and if they're no longer going to the stock amp, you'll lose your rear speakers.

2. the sound processor you're looking at can take balanced differential signal and convert it to an unbalanced signal to be used by any amp. you have the order correct for a complete system overhaul. your stock amp would be at the same level of the tree as the sound processor if you choose to keep the factory speakers up front for now.

3. only unwire everything if you're going to do a complete speaker replacement. if just adding subs, all you need to do is to tap the head unit output wires, and the remote turn on wire, and you'll be good to go.

i'm assuming you mean the left side trunk liner that gives you more room for the install the the boot? you can get great prices on OEM parts from getbmwparts.com. if you want to replace that carpet, for a non-fold down trunk, the part number is 51478266561 for the liner and 51478162577 for the plastic tray. you should usually head over to realoem.com to double check part numbers.

with two 12" subs, you won't really be at a loss for not having any kind of opening to your trunk... in cars that don't have a built-in ski-pass, you can knock out the metal plate that separates the trunk from the cabin as an option to getting more sound up front.
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Old 01-04-2010, 03:18 PM   #5
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So what about the bracket he has there? Was that ordered or custom made?

As for parts I am looking at

MTX JackHammer JH600 Amplifier
MTX Terminator TN400/4 Amplifier
MTX re-Q5
2 MTX JackHammer JH5512-04
MTX Bass Slammer BS212S
Boston Acoustics SX60 SX Series 6-1/2" 2-way Car Component System
Boston Acoustics SX50 SX Series 5-1/4" 2-way Component System

Do you think I am missing anything? Should I get a Peripheral VEN4 or something like that? I do want to use all the speakers to make it a 12 speaker system but am unsure of what else to get to install for speakers later on. Do you have any other suggestions?
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Old 01-04-2010, 09:46 PM   #6
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you mean the brackets that go behind the left trunk liner? they're oem CD changer/dvd nav drive mounts that can be ordered at the same place. the part numbers for both sides are 65128370924 and 65128370932. you'll need to look up the hardware to mount it.

i didn't look at the power ratings of the amps to speakers, but boston is a good choice and it seems like you have all the important components. you won't need any other components to hook up the system. i'm not very familiar with the re-Q5, but it looks like it should do what you need it to do.

look into mounting your front speakers to the actual door frame--the link here is a good start.
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Old 01-04-2010, 10:53 PM   #7
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Do you think a EQ is required??
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Old 01-05-2010, 01:05 AM   #8
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i wouldn't say required. if you're serious about your audio, and since you seemingly have a healthy budget for the project, i would say that it would be recommended.

i was happy with the initial result of my system without one and didn't want to get one because currently i'm working on the second phase of my install: using a carputer instead of the business head unit. you may want to put your system together without one, and then decide if you think it's necessary.
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Old 01-05-2010, 04:30 AM   #9
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the boot is very isolated from the cabin? no wonder im experiencing less bass. it seems like the mids from the stock rear speakers are almost equal to my subwoofer in some songs. i turn off subwoofer from my headunit and dont even notice a difference.
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:06 PM   #10
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the boot is very isolated from the cabin? no wonder im experiencing less bass. it seems like the mids from the stock rear speakers are almost equal to my subwoofer in some songs. i turn off subwoofer from my headunit and dont even notice a difference.
it's pretty frustrating, but you can try punching out your skipass or create a port somewhere else. i've yet to test how much of a difference i get on my system with the sheet metal removed from my skipass. i'd be happy to let you know what it sounds like when i get a chance.
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Old 01-05-2010, 03:13 PM   #11
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i did punch that out...still pretty muffled. never listened without it out so i cant compare. its weird though because i swear that my sub was louder when i was using an LOC. as soon as i hooked up my headunit and plugged it in to subwoofer out its pretty low. i guess its getting a cleaner signal or something.
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Old 01-05-2010, 05:21 PM   #12
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i guess your next option would be looking into a bass restorer or getting bigger subs....
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Old 01-05-2010, 07:01 PM   #13
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Ashhong what do you have for subs? What is your set up?

Last edited by tnhl1989; 01-05-2010 at 07:38 PM.
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Old 01-05-2010, 07:14 PM   #14
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I also realize I do not have the foam padding that covers the spare tire. Would you guys know what the part number is for it?
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Old 01-05-2010, 07:37 PM   #15
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I was looking at

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...=51&fg=65&hl=3

There are four different types of liner. Which one would be the right one?What are the difference of each one?
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:43 AM   #16
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Ashhong what do you have for subs? What is your set up?
I have a 12" Alpine Type S powered by a....MRP-M350 I believe, connected to a Pioneer Avic-D3 via the subwoofer outputs. I would swear that when I had stock HU and line out converter connections I was getting more bass. Right now I have it set pretty high and its definitely not as much as before.

The other thing is I was in a car accident with this equipment before, and my amp got pretty banged up. I dont think thats a big problem though, since it does work. I would assume it would just stop working completely if there were issues.

I see no pictures on that realoem link, but what foam? Above my spare tire is just a solid feeling cover with the little black hook on the end, and on top of that is the carpet. I've never seen foam on mine.
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Old 01-06-2010, 03:32 AM   #17
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In someone else's there was a foam. I forgot whose I saw it in. But yea I just ordered everything i needed from the other link. I'll have pics after phase 1 of the stereo installation. Just amp and subs..for now.
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Old 01-06-2010, 04:14 AM   #18
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Originally Posted by tnhl1989 View Post
I was looking at

http://www.realoem.com/bmw/showparts...=51&fg=65&hl=3

There are four different types of liner. Which one would be the right one?What are the difference of each one?
there's a liner for cars with the through-loading system (fold-down seats) and ones that are designed for cars without that option, and then there is the option of having the navigation/cd changer liner versus the standard liner. i.e., four possible combinations of through-loading or no in conjunction with expanded space or not. you'll want either part number 51478266561 or 51478266565.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tnhl1989 View Post
In someone else's there was a foam. I forgot whose I saw it in. But yea I just ordered everything i needed from the other link. I'll have pics after phase 1 of the stereo installation. Just amp and subs..for now.
don't think foam is a stock option down there--just the support panel and the carpet/rubber liner.

good luck with the amp/sub install.
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Old 01-06-2010, 10:24 AM   #19
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So the previous owner decided to do this....



What would you recommend me to do? Reconnect all the wires to go back to the oem amp than route it to the mono amp and subs? Or just leave it and attack the mono amp and subs?

Last edited by tnhl1989; 01-06-2010 at 10:34 AM.
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Old 01-06-2010, 01:06 PM   #20
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wow. that's a new one.

does your fader and balance work properly? if so then he somehow got all the lines sent back to the proper spot, but judging by the color mismatches going on there i'd be surprised.

if the fader/balance do work normally, i'd just worry about tapping the lines for the subs prior to all the connectors and have it done with, if not, you may consider re-wiring everything.

maybe it's a sign that you should be doing a full speaker upgrade?
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