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Old 05-18-2014, 04:26 PM   #1
mines13
 
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My not so OEM Audio upgrade.

I wanted to upgrade my audio system using the OEM 2014 head unit I had installed previously but was not completely sold on the OEM Audio setup. While I thought it sounded pretty good the few times I had sampled it, I felt with a little more leg work and elbow grease I could build something approaching it in ease of installation but eclipse it in power/performance without adding a ton of weight to the car.

I will not claim my setup is the best way to perform an installation, as I am not using competition grade components or sound deadening. I built a plug and play harness off of the excellent guide created by RandomHero: http://www.ft86club.com/forums/showthread.php?t=42239
Naturally this is not as good as pulling wire, but with my amp selection and clean wiring I am getting zero noise and substantially fuller sound out of my doors and of course the Sub.

I also wanted to keep the fabrication to a minimum, the only semi serious fab work being my amplifier mounting bracket which uses the OEM door driver amplifier mounting location. For the amplifier I went with a JL XD500/3, it was the perfect choice for my goals being small, light weight (5lbs.) and offering plenty of power to drive my sub at 300W RMS and 90W RMS to each door.


Again, you could do a similar system better with more work, but I wanted something easily reversible requiring little to no cutting, I liked the concept of the OEM Audio setup, and I still think it is a great option for those that want an all in one solution with minimal effort. You could build something similar to what I did, right around the same price as the MSRP of the OEM audio setup. You may even save a few bucks swapping out some of the components for less expensive options. Such as the cheaper JBL 3 channel amp, etc.

System components:

JL XD500/3 (amplipfer)
Infinity Kappa 62.11i (6.75" door speakers)
Infinity Kappa 100.9W (10" subwoofer)
Infinity Reference 4002cfx (4" rear speakers)
Infinity Reference 3002cfx (3.5" dash speakers)
Integrity Concepts 10" passenger side enclosure with grill

Misc:

Rockford Fosgate RFI-3 RCA signal cable
Rockford Fosgate RFIF2SW speaker high level input to RCA cable
Maxxlink FLEXIbrass Fuse Holder
1/2" split loom
3/8" split loom
50A Maxi fuse
heat shrink wrap
KnuKonceptz 4 gauge crimp wring terminals
KnuKonceptz KCA 4 Gauge Power Wire Black
KnuKonceptz KCA 4 Gauge Power Wire Red
5 FT 12 AWG zip wire
FatMat 25 Sq Ft x 50 mil Thick Self-Adhesive FatMat Sound Deadener Bulk Pack w/Install Kit
Toyota Metra 72-8104 x3
Toyota Metra 70-1761 x1 (Required to build PNP amplifier harness.)
A few other random odds and ends...

On to the pictures:

2014 Bespoke head unit.


FatMat in doors. I also used it to add mass to the door cards, rear plastics, rear wheel well cavity, and under the rear seats.


I used the plug and play Metra connectors for the Infinity Kappy 62.11 2 ways in the doors.


I modified the rear speaker brackets to accept the 4" Infinity Reference 4002cfx 2 ways, I also used some FatMat to add mass to the speaker brackets and the sheet metal behind the speaker. (Not yet completed in picture.) You can also see where I pinned a Metra speaker harness in to the OEM speaker connector located on the OEM bracket. Making the wiring plug and play requiring no splicing. I did a similar re-pin on the dash 3.5" Reference speakers. (not pictured)


Here are a couple pictures of the actual re-pinning process. This shows the OEM plug and the Metra plug.
The small white clip is the must be removed from the OEM connector so as not to damage or lose it.


Here is the re-pinned OEM plug removed from the OEM speaker swapped over to the Metra leads. The stock Metra harness/plug is on the right.


This is how I mounted the amplifier power and fuse holder, while this is slightly more work then the OEM Audio setup, I think this is cleaner and no more involved as far as pulling the power cable is concerned.


Here is my custom fabricated amp bracket, I don't want to go in to extensive detail on this as there are a few ways one could accomplish something similar. There is some minor welding involved in my version. I also cut a few inches of the factory foam for clearance, all foam retaining push clips are still intact and functional.



Here is the complete assembly mounted and wired. You can see the XD500/3
Re-pinned Metra plug and play harness with soldered speaker level input cable, and the power/ground cables.


The entire assembly fits quite neatly under the factory rear carpeting, you can see the Integrity Concepts enclosure in the corner.


Another shot of the loaded enclosure.

On the recommendation of a friend I added an Audiocontrol LC2i powered line output converter. While my amp does not require me to do this, it made
a world of difference. I have now have so much "more" while running significantly less gain on the amp itself. For the $72 spent, I would call it a must
have if you are doing something similar with a stock head unit. I wouldn't even consider a passive LOC if I ever needed to use one again on another install.
after running the LC2i. Installation was pretty simple as I had the factory amp power and ground available for use. Making the harness semi clean took the
most time and effort.


I set the LC2i jumper to use the amp power on signal lead from the factory harness, I then used the output signal from the LC-2 to trigger the JL500/3.
The LC2 has a full range RCA stereo out, as well as a SUB stereo output. I have a another RFI-3 RCA cable coming to run both outputs. This setup
allows you to run two separate amplifiers (one being dedicated SUB), without having to daisy chain them off the single full range output.


Over all, I am very happy with this setup. It will rattle the car if you want it to, as well as offer clean full sound when you don't. I left out a few images and minor details, but for the most part anything that isn't self explanatory I did my best to illustrate or explain. As always, YMMV. There are many ways to get where you want to go. Some will be cleaner, some faster, some may even be just plain better. This the path I took.

Last edited by mines13; 03-12-2016 at 04:11 PM.
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Old 05-19-2014, 02:49 AM   #2
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Clean setup I'm also thinking of doing a similar setup. What did you use to cut the foam inside the trunk?
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Old 05-19-2014, 09:15 AM   #3
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A small replaceable blade hack saw. Similar to what you may use for small pieces of wood. It cut through like butter, and the cut itself is pretty clean. A hot wire cutter would likely be even cleaner though but I don't have one and didn't feel like building one, especially because you can't really see it.
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Old 05-22-2014, 10:44 AM   #4
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Added an Audiocontrol LC2i. While not required with this amp, it made a world of difference.
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Old 09-12-2016, 11:14 PM   #5
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Thank you for this detailed build! I hope the system has been doing well the past 2 years.

How did the LC2 and the amplifier do down there? did they manage the heat well? I don't really expect it to be problem (depending on the amps) but just wanted to hear a bit more from your experiences..

Thanks!
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Old 09-06-2017, 12:32 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mines13 View Post

System components:

JL XD500/3 (amplipfer)
Infinity Kappa 62.11i (6.75" door speakers)
Infinity Kappa 100.9W (10" subwoofer)
Infinity Reference 4002cfx (4" rear speakers)
Infinity Reference 3002cfx (3.5" dash speakers)
Great info! Just wondering if you tried to mount the 4002cfx in the dash instead of the 3.5's. Did they fit? I got the kappas for the doors and I am still looking for a good dash replacement. But there is not so much info on dash mounting depths for speakers. If I can go 4'' instead of 3.5 it would be nice. Thx!
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Old 09-13-2017, 02:44 PM   #7
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infinity 6.5 6kappa 62.11i install with pics

Hi again,

As there are no pics available in this thread, I though I'd share mine. I recently did install some 6 1/2 infinity kappa on the front doors. I also have a pair of JL audio C1 400x coaxial speakers for the dash. But I have not installed them yet. Will post when I do.

So, first some considerations after viewing a lot of videos and threads on speakers.

a) Removing the door panel is tricky. Be extremely cautious. Some plastic clips will be retained on the metal part of the door, some will loose a black plastic circle they have around, etc. Drivers door was easier for me. I had to struggle with passenger's side. Very though. Might be a good idea to strengthen screYMMV.

b) If attempting to reuse the OEM plastic mold for your new speakers, as I did, beware when cutting the plastic brackets. Some chips may sparkle to your face.

c) White wire is always the positive one in both right and left doors (2006 brz. Blue and brown are negative)

d) I used eastwood stuff to sound deaden the doors (well, just the speaker hole in it). No smell, so far so good. Although it is a little bit difficult to glue it given the speaker hole and window placement.

e) When soldering wires to the speaker plastic mold, heat will affect the glued clamps and may cause them to fall off. Did not happen...but it could.

f) Just putting these speakers on, even if tweeters are not in use (they might be if you decide to upgrade your amp and head unit and redo the wiring, so nothing is lost really. IT IS an upgrade) makes an audible difference. More bass and sound clarity for sure. But do not expect subwoofer bass thumps. Sound on default speakers whas not that bad, but distorted a lot at higher volumes. This is much better. Even without upgrading dash speakers. You will feel a difference. Sure thing.

g) difference in weight is not that significant (except for the eastwood xmat if you decide to cover a lot with it. I just did the speaker hole).

Ok. Now some pics.

Some tools needed:


thermoacosutic stuff:


Removing OEM speaker cone:


Removing brackets:



Soldering and matching polarity:



Door harness details:





speaker fittment in mold (screws do not completely fit right, you could possibly want to use some glue to make sure they do not get loose)



mounted on door:



door handle cables attached to panel:



That's all. I'll post more pics if I get the c1's to fit the dash. Have fun.
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Old 09-14-2017, 04:22 PM   #8
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Dash speakers install jl audio c1-400x

ok. So...I installed the dash speakers. Did not go as good as expected and it will probably require some fine tuning. But as for now, it sounds and fits ok.

As usual, some considerations first:

a) tools needed: the obvious ones plus 10mm ratchet wrench and detached 10 mm socket, phillips #1 detachable screwdriver (you will need the detached tip to be able to screw the bolt on the windshield side, same goes for the 10mm socket for the OEM dash speakers)

b) jl audio c1-400x are 4 inch speakers. They do not perfectly fit. The bottom contacts the air-vent and the holes in the speaker do not match the OEM screw (which is massive). So yo may want to bend a little bit the given metal screwing holes that jl provides so they can be attached (aka glued) to the factory bracket holder so you can actually screw your speakers. You may want to put some foam tape in strategic spots to avoid rattles at this point.

c) Removal of the tweeter harness is almost impossible. It is best to unclip it / unglue it from the dash grill.

d) unbolting and bolting the windshield side screw is quite a painfull process (thx subrau). Be sure to not drop it into the hole.

e) After putting everything in, there is a slightly unfittment in the passengers side. Did not happen on the driver's side though. If you are like me you will not sleep well until is fixed. Do not know exactly what the difference is and why. In order to fit, anyway, you will need to cut the plastic arc that stays right above the tweeter and says "jlaudio". Be extremly careful because you can easily dent your tweeter dome. I did. Although tweeters do not seem to be affected (soundwise) and I am not quite sure they are even getting any signal from the dash location. Still, you'll have to cut it.

Ok, now some pictures:

Opening the dash



The speaker (note the plastic arch that says jlaudio, taht part has to be removed):


Unscrewing, that one is the easy one. The other one is a complete different story...


Testing the speaker. No surprises here. Black is ground, red is positive. On the speaker side, big clamp is positive, little one negative (see pics above). Speaker sounds really good. It did surprise me. I did not expect that much of a change. I already had the infinity's in the door and it is a great improvement. But man, these speakers on the dash are really worthwhile.



Removing OEM harness:



Detail:



Preparing for soldering:



Fitted, cutted, and screwed (passenger's side): Note how the tweeter plastic arch is removed from the equation.



Driver side final, all-in:



Passengers side, all-in. Note the little wave...sigh:



That's all. I wonder if 3.5 would have been a better option. Althogh I really love the sound I get with this setup. I am not planning on adding a woofer. I had a previous setup of kicker and bosé woofer in my older car and it is nice to have that vibrating, deep, deep bass. But unless you go nuts, there is always something that will start to rattle really bad. Side mirrors, some stuff in the truck, some stuff in the dash..did not want to go trough that with my brz

Hope it helps. Have fun.
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Old 09-14-2017, 06:47 PM   #9
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I have used Infinity speakers in my past 2 vehicles and bang for buck and for my listening taste and volume I think they are exceptional. Thanks for the info.
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