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Old 05-12-2011, 04:01 PM   #1
phenryiv1
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Default Guide: Replacing door speakers in '08+ WRX/Impreza: Spacers, adapters, instructions

Visit www.subaruaudio.net for more pictures, a longer, more in-depth writeup, and more information!!


SEE POST #6 FOR MORE DETAILED INFO AND PICTURES OF MY ACTUAL INSTALL AND POST 11 FOR REAR SPEAKER INSTALL


So I see a lot of questions about swapping out the speakers in WRX/Impreza models. Not much is different in the front of the cars, but this thread will focus on the 08+ models rather than the earlier models.

The biggest thing to understand is that you can't just yank off the doors, drop in speakers, and call it a day. If you add more power to the doors, the speakers move more. more cone movement equals more metal reverberation, and that means distorted sound and less efficient reproduction of the music.

Let's skip over proper (or even basic) sound deadening (it has been covered a few times in here and in car audio forums) and focus on the mechanical aspects of upgrading door speakers. Door disassembly, speaker replacement, adapters, spacers, wiring, etc. Just the basics.

Door Disassembly:

First up, I found digital copies of how to disassemble and reassemble the doors, both front and rear. There are a few minor errors (more below), but overall, the directions are pretty good and there is not too much to be added.









Figure 7 on the Front door diagrams shows the rear door. No big deal.

I found another good thread with some real pictures. It may be good for more info:

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=1891166

Also, I always recommend grabbing plastic prybars from somewhere cheap like Harbor Freight or the local discount auto parts store. They are cheap from HF if you are ordering other stuff, but you might as well buy them locally if you are in a hurry or if they are all that you need to buy. You can see them used to remove the armrest in the pictures above, but they are also good as a panel popper, and for removing the trim around the headunit.

Anyway, the basic disassembly instructions above are pretty good. At least look them over before taking the doors apart.

Spacers/adapters:

Why do you even need door spacers or adapters? Well, your stock speakers have an odd shape. They speakers are contoured to fit the door, and the mounting holes are 3 holes in a roughly triangular shape where the screws go into a nylon insert (as opposed to the inner door skin). This helps prevent the screws from backing out too easily. This is a good thing, so you should try to re-use the stock mounting points. This means that you need some sort of an adapter, because aftermarket speakers typically use 4 mounting holes that are on a different mounting pattern than the stock circle.

In addition to an adapter for the mounting holes, most aftermarket speakers are more robust than the stockers. This means bigger baskets, bigger magnets, and an overall deeper profile. Sometimes, the basket diameter is much larger than the stock ones. You need an adapter that has a larger cutout diameter.

You will also need something that will allow your window to clear the larger magnet assembly on the back of aftermarket speakers. For this, you need a spacer.

Here is the stock mounting depth in the picture below. As you can see, not very deep. If you don't have a spacer of some sort, you pretty much have the depths below to work with. Really, you only have 1.5" (the shallower depth), because the OEM bracket is angled.

EDIT: I forgot that there is a little space between the window and the OEM speaker, so your max depth (with out a spacer) would be more than 1.5" and WITH a spacer should be fine for most common speakers. Somewhere in the 2.5-2.75" range seems about right. If you have doubts, break out the tape measure and get a reading from the door skin to the window, when it is down (I'll try to do this when I re-open my doors to do more deadening).



Also, I disassembled the OEM bracket to see if it can be reused, but it only allows for a mounting diameter of 4 13/16" for a speaker to drop in. You COULD modify it, but I woudl not. At the end of the day, it is still flimsy ABS plastic, and once modified you can't ever take it back to stock.

No matter what adapter/spacer you get, plastic or a synthetic, non-porous material is preferred. You can get them made from wood, but even if sealed, they can rot, split out, warp, or even mold. This is not a good thing.

As far as type of plastic, you can get injection molded plastic, but it tends to be thinner and more brittle than other options. The preferred material is PVC (just like the pipes) or High Density Polyethylene (HDPE). Either of these are strong, dense, and will withstand the rigors of being in car doors.

You have 2 main options here: DIY or buy a set.

Buying can be from a mass-market vendor or a local shop or individual.

Mass market:

iA and Kartboy are the 2 main companies for the Subaru community. Both are 1-size fits all, and both adapt to the stock mounting holes.

KartBoy spacers are HDPE and are about .5" thick. This helps with the depth, but not enough for all applications. They are well-made, but are 1-size-fits-some.

iA spacers are also 1-size-fots-most, but you get 2 sizes. 1 set is thin- about .25", while the other is about .5". Some people stack them to make a deeper spacer, but then have nothing to use in the rear. Also only 1 cutout diameter. These are made of injection molded plastic.

Of the 2 above, I like the KB ones better, but they were not deep enough for my application, so I made my own.

Local shop or other 1-off source:

If you go with a local shop or contact someone to make you a set, you can get the accuracy of a custom-cut set, which has some sognificant benefits. Just make sure that they use a quality material (see above) and have them made to your specs. Expect to pay the shop their hourly rate for fabrication, plus material costs. They might save you some money on the economy of scale if they have PVC or HDPE for these sorts of projects.

You also might find a friendly forum member (me) who can make them for you, if you ask nicely.

DIY:

To make my own adapters, I used 3/4" PVC (about $30 for a sheet, which is more than enough for a few sets of adapters, but only sold in 8' and 12' lengths. Yes, that was FEET, not inches.). Various widths are are available- I use 7.25" wide material for mine. I used PVC for my WRX and in all of my past cars. It works well, does not split or rot, and was easy to work with. The 3/4" depth has worked well for 95% of speakers that I have seen.

The tools needed to make your own depends on what you have available. You need a drill for the mounting holes, but otherwise you can be flexible.

I use a fly cutter in a drill press for the center cutout, then a drill press for the mounting holes, then a bandsaw to cut the outer perimeter. You can do them with a router and a hand drill, a coping/jig saw, whatever you have. The material is not cheap (about the cost of buying a set), but you'll have leftover material, even if you mess up a few times.

I make them for other people by request, so PM or contact me if you need a set made and don't want to DIY.

Here are some that I made, which I finally installed recently. Obviously, this is without the speaker:



Wiring:

You will need to either run new wire from your amplifier/headunit to your speakers, or you can use the stock wiring (definitely fine for running speakers off of the HU).

If you re-use the stock wiring, you will need an adapter to get from your stock connector to the terminals on your speakers. You can get them from Crutchfield, BestBuy, etc.

EDIT: According to crutchfield, the 2011 requires 2 pairs of the adapters below:

You need Metra 72-8104

http://www.crutchfield.com/S-KZKAOxD...Harnesses.html



/edit

If you decide to add an amp, you'll need to add wiring from the amp to the speakers in the door, wither direct with a 2-wire traditional speaker wire (for coaxials or if you have components with the crossover in the door) or a 4-wire setup if you put the crossover in the passenger compartment. In-wall speaker wire is good for this. You want a 16/4 wire or a 12/4 wire, both of which are 4 insulated wires in a single sleeve. 16 gauge is smaller than 12 gauge, FYI.

Large zipties are good for snaking the wire through the stock wire boot between the kickpanels and the door.

That is all that I have for now. I might add more as I think of it.

Vibration control and Deadening:

First off, the 2011 have a terrible vibration issue with some mystery box in the door, behind the panel. This has been covered time and time again, so I won't rehash. Great info in this thread (and also a good how-to with pictures on removing the door panels):

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=2111476

It is amazing what can be done with very little foam weatherstripping tape. Truck cap/camper top tape is also a good way to go for this.

No matter what method(s) you employ for noise control, the key to a good application is good surfact adherence and a clean, dry, grease/oil-free surface to which it will be applied. I use Windex Vinegar as a cleaner, but you can get any good automotive degreaser to clean things up. I also try to wipe things down with alcohol (or even white vinegar) right before I apply the noise control.

Deadening:

As posted above, there is a lot on the forums about deadening. I'll explain the very, very basics of it, but don't want to get too much into specific brands or tactics. Sorry- you have to do your own research there. Try caraudio.com or diyma.com for good info.

That said, there are 2 primary methods for deadening sound- adding weight (mass loading) and blocking the sound (barrier membranes). The most effective strategy is to apply mass loaded deadner first, then to apply barrier membrane over that mass deadener and to use the barrier membrane to cover large openings in the inner door skin.

I also STRONGLY recommend securing the edges of deadner (mass loaded or barrier membrane) with aluminized HVAC tape. One roll is far more than needed for an average installation, but it is designed to adhere to sheet metal (like HVAC ductwork) and to maintain its adhesion in changing temperatures, and in varying humidiy conditions. It is a cheap way to provide extra security that the deadener won't detatch from the metal.

What is the difference?

Mass Loading:

Mass loading is what most people think of when you say that you are doing sound damping or deadening in your car. Metal reverberates when the speakers move, when road noise causes vibrations, when you hit a bump, etc. The main area that vibrates is the inner door skin. That is the metal inner door that is covered by your door panel. Your outer door skin also has reverberations (primarily from road noise), but the inner skin is where your speaker is located, so it is responsible for holding still while the speaker moves (violently) within the plane of the inner door skin. Simple physics, but heavier the object the more energy that is needed to make it vibrate. Not only does it take more energy to make them vibrate, but when they do vibrate, it will be at a lower frequency (typically more difficult to hear).

Mass deadener is your typical sticky, heavy material that is added to surfaces in your doors, floorboards, firewall, ceiling, hatch, etc. to control vibrations by adding weight (mass) to the surfaces. This is what the old-school dynamat is. It was the first widely-popular mass loading product for automotive deadening, but there are dozens of other products at all kinds of price points. You can get sheets, strips, mats, squares, rolls- all kinds of "flat" applications and products.

Without good contact and adherence, mass deadner does not do much. It has to be attached to the surface to be effective. Applying these is usually best done with a clean surface (see above) and with the aid of a heat gun or hair dryer to help the material flex to make good contact with the surface. To get the material tight and to ensure that the adhesive makes good contact, small rollers (such as wallpaper rollers) are also a good idea.

Below is an example of some mass deadener applied to the door of my past vehicle (will be updated with pics of WRX deadening, once completed). It is best laid in large sheets, but you also have to do your best to make maximum contact. Taping the top and sides with HVAC tape is a good idea.



Very basic idea of how to do the area around the speaker in a WRX:



You will have to do the rap-and-tap method of determinig where you need to add deadner (basically, tap or bang on the metal and see what reverberates the most. Add deadner, re-tap, repeat as needed). Popular places to add mass deadener are the inside of the outer door skin, particularly low on the outer door skin, and in the area immedately behind the speakers. On the inner door skin, the common place to use it is in the area near/around the speaker. Using it in this location also functions as somewhat of a gasket if you put it behind your spacer/adapter.

Barrier Membranes:

Barrier membranes actually block sounds from transmitting into the vehicle cavity. Typically an adhesive-backed closed-cell foam or similar, these actually absorb sound waves, blocking their entry. Several companies make these products, so look around for a good price on the amount that you need. I actually went the el cheapo route with the material below (my only specific endorsement, since I have used it myself and have found it to be a good value that actually works).

Here is a picture of barrier membrane applied to a past vehicle. I had not completed the sealing of the voids in the picture above, but you get the idea. Again, this will be replaced once I finish the WRX install.



Barrier membrane is good not only for going over the mass loaded deadener do block sounds that make it past the mass loading, but is also great for covering large openings or voids. Without sealing off the big holes, sounds from the outer door skin are free to pass right through to the inner door panel.

A really cheap option for covering large areas in the doors with a foam product is a self-adhesive foam roll product made by Frost King. It is (or was) about $12-15 at HD or Lowes, and has foam with a metallic outer coating. I have used it in the past as a barrier membrane. It can be applied to a clean metal surface and is best used in conjunction with the aluminized HVAC tape to promote permanent adhesion.

http://www.frostking.com/Lowes/FoamF...Insulation.htm
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Last edited by phenryiv1; 01-31-2012 at 01:28 PM.
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Old 05-12-2011, 09:08 PM   #2
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Allow me to be one of the first 30 people to actually SAY....



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Old 05-12-2011, 09:09 PM   #3
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and it only took 3yrs.. lol..

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Old 05-13-2011, 07:49 AM   #4
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Awesome!
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:31 AM   #5
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Nice. I dont have, and never will have (Just not my thing) an 08 WRX, but THANK YOU. Posts like this are what make NASIOC great and keep it IMO the best technical source of any car board out there.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:43 AM   #6
phenryiv1
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Thanks for the votes of confidence. I intend to go clean up some editing issues, as well as to add very basic deadening info (mass-loading v. barrier membranes), sealing, etc. I may also update the pictures a bit. I hope to get my own stuff installed soon, so when I do I will put up my own install photos to bolster the "stock" info from the instructions above.

EDIT:

I FINALLY got my components installed on 06.20.11. This was way to long in the works, but I finally got some time this weekend to get the Rainbows installed. Obviously, this post is now way out of order, but that is no big deal.

This post now focuses on installing my Rainbow CSX 265 component set, running off of the HU and with the crossovers in the doors. I did this for simplicity, though when (if) I amplify them, the crossovers will be reloacted...probably.

So here is how it went down...

First off, I forgot to take a picture of the back side of the door panel to show the location of the door pins. This is REALLY helpful for people doing door speakers, because if you know where they pop spots are, you can pull in the right places.

There is no secret to successfully removing the door panels without feeling like the car is about to break. You can use the special plastic or metal door panel tools, and they sometimes help. The real trick is practice. You WILL feel like the door panel is about to break, especially your first time removing the panel (and/or the first time opening up any door). If you are to nervous, go to a pick-and-pull that has a car of the same make and the same or a similar model and practice there. Don't kill the car for the sake of it, but get familiar with how they come apart.

What I did get a picture of was the underside of the armrest assembly. Knowing where the retaining clips are located will make it easier to know where to apply pressure.



After getting the armrest off and popping the panel, you have a couple of choices. I try not to remove the lock mechanism and handle assembly unless absolutely necessary. When I am doing a full deadening, I usually pull it all off, but for the speaker install and basic deadner install, it was not needed. I just used a soft cloth to rest the panel on and worked around the panel.

Tweeters:

The first thing that I did was to remove the stock sail panel. To show where the stock clips are located, I took a side-by-side pic of the sail panel and of the location where it clips into place. Note in the picture below that I had not removed the metal clip that goes in the center hole. It is the silver/metal part in the middle of the door. You have to remove this from the door and put it on the post on the sail panel to reattach the sail panel. Don't forget to do this, if theat seperates from the sail panel.



On to actually mounting the aftermarket tweeter into the stock tweeter housing. While this was my greatest fear about the install (and the greatest unknown until I got the door apart, it ended up being the best part of the install! The Rainbow CSX 265 set comes with the CAL 20 Silk 20mm silk (duh) dome tweeter.

So the big question for a lot of people wanting to use aftermarket components is whether the tweeters will fit in the stock housing. While a little caulk or hot glue will help position a smaller tweeter, and while a Dremen and/or file can enlarge the stocl location, many people just don't want to permanently hack into the stock parts. Just an FYI on that- the stock parts for the sail panel assembly are fairly cheap, and even getting a set of sail panel blanks and surface (or even flush, depending on the tweeter depth) mounting tweeters there would work for many people.

The stock tweeter is somewhere in the 1" range, which leaves a lot of options. If you look at how the stock assembly is in 2 parts (plus the actual driver), it becomes apparent that a little caulk and some space filler (foam tape, plastic, etc.) would allow most tweeters under 1" to work in the stock location.

Knowing this, I figured that the 20mm CAL 20 would be fine in the stock location, even though I might have to do some space filling to make it work without any excessive movement.

Below is a picture of the stock housing, the stock tweeter, and the CAL 20 aftermarket tweeter.



I test-fit the CAL 20 in the stock location and the tweeter was a perfect fit. Not a close fit- a PERFECT fit. When the tweeter was placed in the ring where the stock driver rests, there was no movement from side to side. This was awesome.

My next step was to reassemble the stock assembly to see how the depth worked out. I had a small gap between the back of the tweeter and the rear part of the housing assembly. I knew that I woudl need to fill this with something to hold the tweeter in place. Step 1 was to lay a really thin bead of caulk around the mounting ring of the housing, then to press the CAL 20 into place in the housing. This would reduce the likelihood that that the tweeter would have any movement, particularly once I added something to the back of the tweeter to hold it in place from the back. The caulk that I used was clear (it looks white in the picture but dries clear).



I then pressed the tweeter in place, being careful to position the tweeter wires in the direction where I wanted them to go.



The next step was to cut a small (5/8" x 5/8") square of foam adhesive weatherstripping. This is about 3/8" to 1/2" thick, but compresses well. Once I affixed it to the back of the tweeter, I replaced the back of the stock tweeter housing and reinstalled the 3 mounting screws. Once this was done, the tweeter was locked into place. From the front, it is completely invisible.



Midranges:

The midranges were very easy to install. The CSX midrange requires a 143mm (5.63") cutout diameter, so I made yet another set of PVC spacers/adapters (PM me if you need a set made) then marked and pre-drilled the mounting holes to attach the midrange to the spacer.

Once that was done, I cleaned the mounting area well with a degreaser, then took a small amount of deadner and applied it to the mounting area. This functions as both deadner and as a gasket for sealing the spacer to the inner door skin.

First, I cut a pie-cutout in the deadner and folded the excess around the back of the inner door skin. Then, I applied a single layer of deadner to the outer door skin immedately behind the speaker location. This may not do much, but it does not hurt.



Next, I used (3) 1.5" #10 sheet metal screws to attach the spacer to the door skin. You want to use a #10 sheet metal screw, but for length you can use 1-1.5" without any complications. I usually use 1.25" screws with my 3/4" spacers, but I only had 1.5" #10s handy. I had a picture of all of the fasteners that I used, but the 10-picture limit is killing me.



Finally, you want to attach the speaker to the spacer. I used 1/2" sheet metal screws, but you will usually get mounting screws with your speakers. Whatever you do, PREDRILL YOUR MOUNTING HOLES! This will prevent stripping or cracking. Predrill the holes based on the shank/body size of the screw (not the thread size).

Next, you want to pull your wires to your crossovers and slide the midrange into place.

You can't see it too well, but I used another layer of deadner as a front gasket. I cut a 1/2" wide strip and made relief cuts, then curved it to match the curve of the spacer, then I sandwiched it between the speaker and the spacer. After that, I tightened it down.



That was it for the midranges. With the right adapter/spacer and the right wiring, mounting them up and running the wires is as simple as installing coaxials.

Wiring & Crossovers:

If you are not running an amplifier, and thus are re-using the stock wiring, the easiest and most solid way to do the wiring is to use a wiring adapter. I bought mine on Amazon for $7 shipped, but you can get them at Best Buy, Crutchfield, etc. The harness that I used is the Metra 72-8104. According to crutchfield, the 2011 requires 2 pairs of the 72-8104 adapters (1 pair front, 1 pair rear). I only did the front speakers for now.

I also have a comparison of the Metra harness to the stock speaker input, but they are the same. That is what makes them useful adapters.

I connected the Metra harness to the stock wiring, cut the spade connector ends off of the adapter, and ran the positive and negaties wires into the inputs on the Rainbow crossovers. From that point, I connected the tweeter wires from above and the midrange wires that I had pulled up from below. I know that the tweeter wires look ugly in their zip-tied condition, but the tweeter wires are soldered to the tweeters, so until I have everything finalized, I did not want to cut off the excess wire.

Mounting the crossovers was pretty straightforward. I mounted them horizontally up under the lock/handle assembly, righ tin the area where the door panel bulges outward to contour to meet the dash. I first tried to mount it vertically and a little bit forward, but the location interfered with the panel. I tried to move it backward but there were structural impediments. After some playing around, I ended up turining it 90* and mounting it in the location below. I attached it with (2) 1/2" sheet metal screws.

From there, I ran my wiring to and from the crossover, tightened it down, and wired it up.



That should be it. If you have any questions, ask away. As I update the thread with more pics and as I install more gear, some of this info may become obselete, so bear with me.

Last edited by phenryiv1; 06-16-2014 at 10:30 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:54 AM   #7
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When you do your own stuff, put some "live" pics in the thread. Bonus points if you stick them in the relevant spots.
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Old 05-22-2011, 01:57 AM   #8
builthatch
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question:

figure 9 for the front on the crutchfield doc, and figure 8 for the rear...

if you have two way speakers stock, as opposed to what they call "standard speaker", it looks as if you don't need spacers for your replacement speakers unless you have an issue with depth, right? because it looks like it is a standard mounting configuration within what is effectively a stock spacer, right?
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Old 05-22-2011, 11:44 AM   #9
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subscribing, should be a sticky
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Old 05-22-2011, 03:31 PM   #10
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Patrick!

I never knew! I just posted a question about this... I'm sure I'll get massively flamed, because I didn't search well enough!

PM, you need to come visit and eh... bring some of your stuff too. I
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Old 05-23-2011, 11:11 AM   #11
phenryiv1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by builthatch View Post
question:

figure 9 for the front on the crutchfield doc, and figure 8 for the rear...

if you have two way speakers stock, as opposed to what they call "standard speaker", it looks as if you don't need spacers for your replacement speakers unless you have an issue with depth, right? because it looks like it is a standard mounting configuration within what is effectively a stock spacer, right?
It is actually the same 3-hole mounting configuration for both the standard speaker and the "premium" 2-way model. The mounting setup on the 2-way may or may not match your aftermarket speaker. They don't match up with mine.

With both the standard and the premium speakers' 3-hole setup, the adapter is necessary, even if you don't need a spacer. I bought a set of adapters (not spacers) one time, but you still end up needing to drill into the door because the diameter of the (most) 4-hole aftermarket speakers will still be in the sheetmetal. Even the thin KB spacers eliminate that issue, assuming that your speakers are compatible with the KB mounting diameter cutout.

EDIT EDIT EDIT:

I ran out of space in the earlier posts, but here is some info about the rear speaker install...

Rear Speakers:

Against my better judgement,I decided to pick up a pair of Polk dB651 coaxials. Crutchfield had them on special price ($60/pr, shipped, with the wiring harness) and Polks were buy-1-get-1-half-off, so my brother and I split 2 pairs.

I figured that they'd be a modest upgrade at best, btu I was wrong (more on that later).

For now, just some pics of the install...

Speakers and adapter:



Spacers:



Partial door disassembly:



Underside of handle assembly (note clip location):



Interesting...



Weatherstripping gasket applied:



Installed:



I'll come back and add the details later, but I wanted to get this posted...

Last edited by phenryiv1; 09-13-2011 at 10:28 AM.
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Old 05-23-2011, 11:29 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phenryiv1 View Post
It is actually the same 3-hole mounting configuration for both the standard speaker and the "premium" 2-way model. The mounting setup on the 2-way may or may not match your aftermarket speaker. They don't match up with mine.

With both the standard and the premium speakers' 3-hole setup, the adapter is necessary, even if you don't need a spacer. I bought a set of adapters (not spacers) one time, but you still end up needing to drill into the door because the diameter of the (most) 4-hole aftermarket speakers will still be in the sheetmetal. Even the thin KB spacers eliminate that issue, assuming that your speakers are compatible with the KB mounting diameter cutout.
ahh, ok - that makes sense.

i'm leaning toward the iA set at this point. if i had some MDF left from when i built my box i would probably just make them, or even PVC like what you've done but for the cost of that and running out to get it, etc., i'd rather just buy the plastic ones.

great thread, thanks!!!
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Old 06-10-2011, 02:01 PM   #13
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Thread updated with correct wiring harness information.
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Old 06-10-2011, 02:55 PM   #14
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I've checked around town about the harness you suggested. No one in town apparently carry's those. They all just cut the adapter off the end apparently. If doing that, what kind of connector would you suggest? Also, are the cables labeled with +/-? I'm going to be installing them this weekend and don't want to wait on Crutchfield.
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Old 06-10-2011, 03:13 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by dragoryte View Post
I've checked around town about the harness you suggested. No one in town apparently carry's those. They all just cut the adapter off the end apparently. If doing that, what kind of connector would you suggest? Also, are the cables labeled with +/-? I'm going to be installing them this weekend and don't want to wait on Crutchfield.
I can't remember which is positive and negative on the harness, and I don't have the doors open to look at the factory color codes.

I'll see if I can dig up any info and will post it here.

In the meantime, I added the Metra part number to the first post. Before, I just had the crutchfield item number.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:26 PM   #16
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Updated Post 1. Picture limit prevented me from putting more of the writeup in post 1. Will figure out something and go from there.
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Old 06-21-2011, 03:36 PM   #17
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Updated: Edited Post #6 to include actual install (my own experience) and pictures.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:47 PM   #18
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Nice write up, thanks. I'm still debating whether or not I want to touch the stereo in my outback. These photos help!

Two things:

How exactly are you covering the voids in the door? That's my biggest concern about messing with the stereo in this car. The door looks like it needs a hefty amount of work to seal it.

Also, it looks like maybe Subaru doors get a little more water in them than I'm used to. It's usually not recommended to put crossovers in doors for that reason. That crossover location would worry me.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:53 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by jamesder View Post
Nice write up, thanks. I'm still debating whether or not I want to touch the stereo in my outback. These photos help!

Two things:

How exactly are you covering the voids in the door? That's my biggest concern about messing with the stereo in this car. The door looks like it needs a hefty amount of work to seal it.

Also, it looks like maybe Subaru doors get a little more water in them than I'm used to. It's usually not recommended to put crossovers in doors for that reason. That crossover location would worry me.
I will be covering the door voids with adhesive-backed closed cell foam (see the Frost King stuff noted at teh end of post #1) for the big areas.

As to your concerns about the crossover, I would rather not leave them there, but for now, it beats running 2 wires out of the doors then 4 wires back in. Since the crossovers are right near the OEM electronics, they should be in the safest possible place in the doors. When/if I amplify the components, I will probably move them to the kickpanes and run 16/4 in-wall speaker wire frm the crossovers to the doors and then split it off into (2) 16/2 runs to the individual drivers.
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Old 06-21-2011, 10:11 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phenryiv1 View Post
I will be covering the door voids with adhesive-backed closed cell foam (see the Frost King stuff noted at teh end of post #1) for the big areas.
Will it just be kind of hanging over it with no solid material to back it. I've seen people cut out aluminum sheets the shape of the hole and screw/seal them to the door. There are so many wires and latches/rods coming through these doors, getting a good seal on the door has been my concern.


Quote:
Originally Posted by phenryiv1 View Post
As to your concerns about the crossover, I would rather not leave them there, but for now, it beats running 2 wires out of the doors then 4 wires back in. Since the crossovers are right near the OEM electronics, they should be in the safest possible place in the doors. When/if I amplify the components, I will probably move them to the kickpanes and run 16/4 in-wall speaker wire frm the crossovers to the doors and then split it off into (2) 16/2 runs to the individual drivers.
Ah. I missed the part where you said you were running them off the head unit. Do these doors just have a grommet or is there a molex connector in there?

This floor under the carpet of the outback area is ridiculous. There's a factory solid foam template for a false floor...not to mention JL stealthbox...it's hard for me to ignore
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:35 AM   #21
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Originally Posted by jamesder View Post
Will it just be kind of hanging over it with no solid material to back it. I've seen people cut out aluminum sheets the shape of the hole and screw/seal them to the door. There are so many wires and latches/rods coming through these doors, getting a good seal on the door has been my concern.
Plexiglass is another option. I may try to cover the larger areas with plexi before I do the foam, but at this point, I don't know. I need to weigh the benefits. The car is so loud that the likelihood that quieting the doors will just make other cabin noise more apparent makes doing too much door deadening work unattractive.

My door deadening is primarily aimed at reducing the resonance cause by the drivers moreso than quieting ambient noise.


Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesder View Post
Ah. I missed the part where you said you were running them off the head unit. Do these doors just have a grommet or is there a molex connector in there?
It is a gromet...no molex. You just have to snake new wires through. Pretty straightforward, but a pain to do for 16/4 running to the door AND some 16/2 coming from the door connector in to the crossover.

The other option would be to skip using the front speaker connections on the factory->aftermarket wiring harness behind the HU, run the front speaker outs to longers wires to the crossover in the kickpanels, then run the 16/4 out to the doors to go to the component drivers.

Since I had already used the HU wiring adapter/harness back when I was still on the stock coaxials, I did not feel like undoing that wiring at this time.
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Old 06-22-2011, 11:15 AM   #22
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i see. thanks for posting all that. definitely helping me weigh my options
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Old 06-22-2011, 12:34 PM   #23
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I am actually done with the rears but when I put in the front coaxial db651's in the front I ran into something I'm not sure about.

Should I run the stock tweeter with the 2 way like they did with the stock setup in the 2011 or unhook the stock tweeter entirely and just let the better speaker do all the work.

I am running them off the head unit right now. I'm not really interested in buying an amp and rewiring everything so I'm wondering if the extra tweeter would sound worse when hooked up with the polls than if I just ran the polks.

I know the stock tweeters can't possibly take more than a couple watts of power. My head unit currently runs 20w rms to each channel. When I would plug the tweeter in with the stereo push to that side I couldn't hear a difference other than more highs. So in experimenting I left the stock tweeters hooked up. Do you suggest changing this?
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Old 06-22-2011, 01:33 PM   #24
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Originally Posted by dragoryte View Post
Should I run the stock tweeter with the 2 way like they did with the stock setup in the 2011 or unhook the stock tweeter entirely and just let the better speaker do all the work.

I know the stock tweeters can't possibly take more than a couple watts of power. My head unit currently runs 20w rms to each channel. When I would plug the tweeter in with the stereo push to that side I couldn't hear a difference other than more highs. So in experimenting I left the stock tweeters hooked up. Do you suggest changing this?
It is not power consumption that matters as much as the impedence that the HU "sees" when running (2) 4-ohm drivers from a single channel.

The stock tweeters are nominally 4 ohms. So are the Polks. The HU (most headunits, for that matter) is designed to drive a single 4 ohm speaker. With (2) 4 ohm drivers on a single channel, the HU "sees" a 2 ohm load and tries to double the power. Maybe it can take it, maybe not. It will generate more heat and may cause premature failure of the amplifier section of the stock HU.

If you are not in love with having more highs and having them located higher in the doors, I'd unhook the tweeters for the safety and longevity of the HU.
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Old 06-22-2011, 01:55 PM   #25
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Originally Posted by jamesder View Post
i see. thanks for posting all that. definitely helping me weigh my options
Chayse did a good writeup of how he filled the voids and applied deadner to the doors. He also utilized a set of my PVC spacers.

Here is a link to the specific post (scroll down a bit):

http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...5&postcount=54

I still prefer plexiglass and short screws for the large areas, but his way works as well.
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