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#1 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 05:28 AM
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I have started toying around with audio upgrades on my 1995 325i (had the factory premium package but not HK). Replaced the head unit last week and also put in some relatively cheap Blaupunkt 4" coaxial speakers. Not happy at all with the sound, especially bass at medium volume levels. In the process I found out about the external amp in the back. Now if the amp has a crossover integrated, shouldn't this improve bass control?

1. What are some of the mid price range 4" speakers I should consider?
2. Should I buy good speakers with cross overs and bypass the amp? (not planning to replace that amp). Or can the amp be adjusted?
3. Anyone have info or specs on this external amp?

thanks for your thoughts. am relatively new to this board.

(PS i live in Philippines where there is almost no aftermarket support for these things -- they only know how to pimp out Hondas ... ghead Also, limited availability of speakers and such -- have only seen Blaupunkt, RF, JBL and Pioneer)
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#2 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 09:29 AM
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Bypass the factory amp before any more purchases/changes. That will make the single biggest impact on your sound. The aftermarket speakers sound almost as bad on the factory amp as the oem ones do. Then give it a listen and go from there.
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#3 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 02:05 PM
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yes, first thing's first, get a dedicated amp for your speakers with low THD and high 'signal to noise' with plenty of wattage to spare.


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#4 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 07:31 PM
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but as mentioned, not planning to replace the amp (other priorities, like replacing headlights which lens covers are cracked).

should be able to get reasonable sounds quality from decent head unit and decent speakers! right?
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#5 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 08:17 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by paps@Jul 14 2004, 07:11 PM
but as mentioned, not planning to replace the amp (other priorities, like replacing headlights which lens covers are cracked).

should be able to get reasonable sounds quality from decent head unit and decent speakers! right?
Yep... you sure can! Bypass that crappy factory amp and hardwire your headunit to the speakers in the car. It will sound much better even off of the aftermarket deck. Extra amps/subs can be added later, that is the easy part. Bypassing amp /rewiring the speakers/etc is the hard part.
Have fun!
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#6 (permalink) Old 07-14-2004, 09:56 PM
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you won't want to run the stock speakers with out the stock amp. or a lot of cross-overs.

each speaker get its own signal right from the amp. there are 2 pair to each one in the rear deck (the "woofer" and tweeter) then 1 pair for earch speperate speaker up front.

this means lots of work and wiring. replacing the HU and using the stock amp will still give you better sound.

later you can replace speakers and bypass/replace amp.

2008 128i Jetblack
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#7 (permalink) Old 07-15-2004, 12:07 AM
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well, the stock Nokia speakers (1" and 4") in back HAD to be replaced - one of them was blown. Decided to replace the head unit as well. The audio installers didn't know about the external amp in the back (and neither did I) until they started work, and recommended to hook it up to the new HU and all the speakers. Front speakers now sound great, but rears don't. It seems/sounds like the amp is pushing the high frequencies to front tweeters and low frequencies to back coaxial speakers (someone please correct me if this isn't right). With only 4" in the back, they don't seem able to handle it. Someone else earlier said I just needed crossovers for the back, but I read on another thread that this amp has crossovers.

I am inclined to have them bypass the amp and see how that sounds. Guess it depends on how much work that is.

Before I bought the HU and speakers, they wired them directly in the store and it sounded great, including bass freq. So seems like it is the amp causing the problems. Maybe the amp installed was optimized to run with the factory head unit?

I now see how this stuff can become all consuming. Not that that is a bad thing!
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#8 (permalink) Old 07-15-2004, 11:30 AM
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Assuming what you are saying, is that the installers bypassed the oem amp, and have the new head unit powering all your speakers, the following advice will be applicable....

The only way your new head unit is sending nothing but highs to the front and lows to the rear, would be if the head unit has such settings. Some do. Pioneer for instance calls it FIE. This creates decent imaging by splitting the frequencies up in a manor that is conducive to a good sound stage. With your speaker set up though, this is not ideal.

I have yet to mess much with the stock amp, but would imagine the following is true. The oem amp has several channels of amplification (like ten). Each one of those channels is crossed over at a specific frequency for each speaker. Your head unit's amp has four channels of amplification. Without the use of seperately purchased aftermarket crossovers, there is no way I am aware of to run all speakers off your new deck.

I would normally recomend sticking with the oem amp, until you replace all the speakers. The reason for this, is the new speakers for the front for example will come with it's own seperate crossover (if of course you buy two-way or three-way seperates for the front).

The rears you bought are fine, you just need to either turn off the internal crossover on the head unit, or make sure their is nothin in between the rear speaker lead on the head unit and the rear speaker. :wink

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#9 (permalink) Old 07-15-2004, 10:04 PM
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thanks for the detailed advice. Audio guys have not yet bypassed the amp - something I will ask them to try tomorrow. What they did tell me before, was they were able to adjust the settings for front oem speakers but not the new back. This didn't make sense to me, so will have to take a second look tomorrow.
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