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Old 03-07-2013, 11:13 PM   #1
Devilinpoop
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e46 speaker upgrade questions

Ladies and gentlemen,

I would like to upgrade my speakers on my 1999 328i, stock HU, non HK system, and no amp.

I am a bit of a noob in sound things. And would rather not install an AMP, because I have no idea where to even start with that.

I am thinking about installing Pioneer TS-A1675R.

I am not looking for something absolutely spectacular. Just something that sounds more crisp than the stock speakers.
Do you have any recommendations?
Are the pioneer speakers any good?
would you recommend getting new tweets and mid ranges too? if yes which once?
Or any other help would be greatly appreciated.

And thank you for your time. I appreciate it.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:17 PM   #2
[USMC]Skywalker
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Check BSW (Bavarian Soundwerks) THey have a full replacement set and supposedly sound real well and are designed to work with BMW Amps and they are plug and play.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:20 PM   #3
Devilinpoop
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I know about BSW but i would rather do a little more work and spend half as much. BSW is expensive. And i cannot find any technical information about their speakers anywhere. I cant find frequency response, ohms, nothing.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:23 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devilinpoop View Post
I know about BSW but i would rather do a little more work and spend half as much. BSW is expensive. And i cannot find any technical information about their speakers anywhere. I cant find frequency response, ohms, nothing.
You pay for what you get. Do it once and do it right.
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Old 03-07-2013, 11:35 PM   #5
illestxbmw
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Hey I just recently got some speakers off of amazon and installed them in my 323i it's a big a difference voice more clear some bass but not to much. Their called infinity reference 6032cf and its a good brand.
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Old 03-08-2013, 02:23 AM   #6
raphen
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I agree with [USMC]Skywalker. Get the full kit from BSW. From what I have been reading the BMW speakers are in 2-ohm. Just replacing one pair will make the cabin sound worse.
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Old 03-08-2013, 02:43 AM   #7
BRccKLYN
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I have a digital designs 6.5 component set and they sound amazing. They also come with a small magnet so they fit in the door easily.

Last edited by BRccKLYN; 03-08-2013 at 12:12 PM.
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Old 03-08-2013, 04:32 AM   #8
Megalocnus
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I replaced my non-HK speakers recently (all but the rear door midranges), but did not go with BSW for several reasons:

- Both my front midrange speakers' housings were broken. These are known to be fragile. However, BSW sells their midrange speakers without housings, the old ones must be reused. So, my best option was to go with original midrange speakers from BMW. These come ready to install with grille and housing. The price was about $40 per piece.
Our midranges actually aren't that bad. The tweeters and the basses really suck though.

- Midbass speakers: It's hard to find 6.5" 2 ohm speakers that fit the front doors. The BSW speakers are ready to mount, at the cost of $160 per pair. I got four Infinity reference 6032si speakers. These fit nicely with adaptors, The 6032 series are two way speakers, 4 ohm tweeter + 4 ohm woofer, total max impedance of 2 ohm. Well, their tweeters probably aren't doing much since I had them connected to bass channels, but I find the overall sound quality of the 6032si speakers to be quite good. In addition to this, they are very decently priced at a little over $100 per two pairs.

- Tweeters: It is very hard to find a proper replacement for our tweeters. All available speakers are either too large or have too low impedance. Of all BSW products, I think it makes most sense to buy the tweeters. This is what I'd probably do if I have to replace mine again. Actually I almost did, but at the time their non-HK speakers were on back order. So I got a pair of Audax TW010F1 tweeters for under $6 each. These are probably the only currently available 8 ohm tweeters that aren't obviously oversize. However, fitting these into the stock tweeter brackets was a lot of work. I was not sure this is going to end well, so I got a pair of used BMW tweeters from ebay just to experiment with their brackets.
At first I had to trim off all plastic protruding from the rectangular bodies of the tweeters. Unfortunately, that included the terminals, which I had to rebuild. Thankfully these tweeters are made amazingly sturdy, otherwise I would have destroyed them in the process for sure. Finally had to cut off about a 1/4 section of the brackets to fit in the tweeters. When everything was glued together, they bolted right on.
To my surprise the Audax tweeters noticeably improved the sound. I didn't know tweeters contribute this much.

So, if you don't want to spend over $600 to replace the speakers of an old car, there definitely are other options that will do quite well with a bit of work...

Last edited by Megalocnus; 03-09-2013 at 06:12 AM.
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:07 AM   #9
David McMahon
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My car seems to have tweeters but not plugged in, does that mean that all E46's come with them but only the higher spec cars have them connected?
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Old 03-08-2013, 05:28 AM   #10
Megalocnus
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I don't think there are E46 328i models without tweeters. Your car should be equipped with ten speakers. You can double check on realoem.
The tweeters are mounted in the front doors behind the smallest size grilles that are also closest to the side mirrors. The easiest way to test if they work is by playing with the controls of the head unit: cut all sound from the rear speakers, cut the low frequencies, then move the balance to the left or to the right, get as close as possible to the corresponding tweeter and listen.
One of my original tweeters was completely dead (had been in use for more than 13 years), the other was working, but I could barely hear it. Perhaps your tweeters are gone too? How long have you had your car for?

My new tweeters I are an entirely different story though. I don't need to mess with the controls to hear them.

Last edited by Megalocnus; 03-08-2013 at 05:46 AM.
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:44 PM   #11
MercForHire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megalocnus View Post
I replaced my non-HK speakers recently (all but the rear door midranges), but did not go with BSW for several reasons:

- Both my front midrange speakers' housings were broken. These are known to be fragile. However, BSW sells their midrange speakers without housings, the old ones must be reused. So, my best option was to go with original midrange speakers from BMW. These come ready to install with grille and housing. The price was about $40 per piece.
Our midranges actually aren't that bad. The tweeters and the basses really suck though.

- Midbass speakers: It's hard to find 6.5" 2 ohm speakers that fit the front doors. The BSW speakers are ready to mount, at the cost of $160 per pair. I got four Infinity reference 6032si speakers. These fit nicely with adaptors, The 6032 series are two way speakers, 4 ohm tweeter + 4 ohm woofer, total max impedance of 2 ohm. Well, their tweeters probably aren't doing much since I had them connected to bass channels, but I find the overall sound quality of the 6032si speakers to be quite good. In addition to this, they are very decently priced at a little over $100 per two pairs.

- Tweeters: It is very hard to find a proper replacement for our tweeters. All available speakers are either too large or have too low impedance. Of all BSW products, I think it makes most sense to buy the tweeters. This is what I'd probably do if I have to replace mine again. Actually I almost did, but at the time their non-HK speakers were on back order. So I got a pair of Audax TW010F1 tweeters for under $6 each. These are probably the only currently available 8 ohm tweeters that aren't obviously oversize. However, fitting these into the stock tweeter brackets was a lot of work. I was not sure this is going to end well, so I got a pair of used BMW tweeters from ebay just to experiment with their brackets.
At first I had to trim off all plastic protruding from the rectangular bodies of the tweeters. Unfortunately, that included the terminals, which I had to rebuild. Thankfully these tweeters are made amazingly sturdy, otherwise I would have destroyed them in the process for sure. Finally had to cut off about a 1/4 section of the brackets to fit in the tweeters. When everything was glued together, they bolted right on.
To my surprise the Audax tweeters noticeably improved the sound. I didn't know tweeters contribute this much.

So, if you don't want to spend over $600 to replace the speakers of an old car, there definitely are other options that will do quite well with a bit of work...
Many, thanks. subscribed to thread.

I am looking to upgrade my speakers too.
Can't get enough of Christina Aguilera albums from the early 2000s, always had the hots for her.
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Old 03-09-2013, 09:50 PM   #12
scarede46er
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Actually, BSW is neither the best nor even good value for money. For less than the price of just the subwoofer, you can get Boston Acoustics all around (you need 6.5s). Get components for the front, mount the tweeter in the right place. Run wires underneath your hand brake shroud, underneath the back seat to the trunk. Mount a 4 channel amp, reuse the existing speaker wiring (get a color code diagram, available on the internet for free). I would replace the head unit unless you must have the original look. Sell your two OEM amps for dinero and get the entire system for about 500 dollars.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:01 PM   #13
MercForHire
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How are these 6 1/2" Infinity Reference 6002i speakers?
http://toronto.kijiji.ca/c-cars-vehi...AdIdZ457295291

Only $60
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:03 PM   #14
scarede46er
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I like Infinity. Go for it! I hope you upgrade the amp as well. The OEM one is puny.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:05 PM   #15
MercForHire
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Originally Posted by scarede46er View Post
I like Infinity. Go for it! I hope you upgrade the amp as well. The OEM one is puny.
thanks. I don't have amp, I have the non-HK system. I do have a Kenwood headunit. That made a big difference.
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Old 03-09-2013, 10:09 PM   #16
Devilinpoop
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So i have found this thread http://forum.roadfly.com/threads/631...-Upgrade-(long!) and it convinced me that if I want decent audio I need to replace the factory amp. So what I am thinking about doing is getting a 5 channel amp, 4 new speakers to replace the woofers in the doors and the deck. And 2 or 4 tweeters in the doors. However, this job seems like a pain in the butt to wire in a new amp. Will the sound improvement be much greater if I redo the whole system? And I also would like to keep the original look with the standard head unit.

any ideas on amps, speakers would be helpful.

I got most of my information from the thread above
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:14 AM   #17
Megalocnus
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Originally Posted by MercForHire View Post
thanks. I don't have amp, I have the non-HK system. I do have a Kenwood headunit. That made a big difference.
Are you sure you don't have an amp?
The non-HK E46 BMWs on the US market US do have an amp:
http://www.bmwgm5.com/Stereo_amp.htm

I don't know about the 6002i speakers, looks like they will fit and will work, but to buy them used for $60 doesn't sound like a good deal to me.

Last edited by Megalocnus; 03-10-2013 at 01:18 AM.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:19 AM   #18
Devilinpoop
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Megalocnus View Post
Are you sure you don't have an amp?
The the non-HK E46 BMWs on the US market US do have an amp:
http://www.bmwgm5.com/Stereo_amp.htm

I don't know about the 6002i speakers, looks like they will fit and will work, but to buy them used for $60 doesn't sound like a good deal to me.
It depends where the car was destined for. If he is in Canada he may not have an amp. Canada has euro spec cars. Some Euro spec cars have a 6 speaker sound system without an amplifier in the trunk of the car. However if it is a USA car it does have an amp under the trunk lining. It all depends what spec car he has.
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:20 AM   #19
scarede46er
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Originally Posted by MercForHire View Post
thanks. I don't have amp, I have the non-HK system. I do have a Kenwood headunit. That made a big difference.
You have an amp. It just is not an HK
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Old 03-10-2013, 01:21 AM   #20
scarede46er
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Devilinpoop View Post
So i have found this thread http://forum.roadfly.com/threads/631...-Upgrade-(long!) and it convinced me that if I want decent audio I need to replace the factory amp. So what I am thinking about doing is getting a 5 channel amp, 4 new speakers to replace the woofers in the doors and the deck. And 2 or 4 tweeters in the doors. However, this job seems like a pain in the butt to wire in a new amp. Will the sound improvement be much greater if I redo the whole system? And I also would like to keep the original look with the standard head unit.

any ideas on amps, speakers would be helpful.

I got most of my information from the thread above
I would replace the head unit to. To have an amp power sound cleanly, you need line level inputs to the amp. Someone should correct me if I am wrong but the OEM HU only has speaker level outputs.
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