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Old 04-13-2014, 03:20 PM   #1
jadawgis732
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Default 2012 WRX Install Log

Hey,
So I just wanted to give a little bit of info regarding my recent headunit & speaker upgrade.

Products Installed:
Kenwood DNX571HDKenwood DNX571HD

HDE336 Backup CameraHDE336 Backup Camera

Metra ASWC-1Metra ASWC-1

Pioneer TS-A1675 6.5" 3-WayPioneer TS-A1675 6.5" 3-Way
(Front)
Pioneer TS-G1644 6.5" 2-WayPioneer TS-G1644 6.5" 2-Way
(Rear)

Issues Specific to WRX:
The Kenwood headunit has a few nuances. First, it won't map the On-Hook, Off-Hook buttons yet. Hopefully, Metra will release a firmware update that will enable this functionality soon. Either way I have a ticket in to Kenwood on the issue.

Second, powering the backup camera with the reverse light, while it works, won't automatically switch to the backup camera when you're in reverse. So, instead I had to hook up the reverse gear sensor, pictured here. (It's the third pin in, brown and yellow wire. I just vampire clipped into it.)


Since powering the backup camera via the reverse gear will only allow it to relay video while powered, and I thought it'd be cool to see how close a person tailgating me is I went in search of a 12v switched source in the same area. (I really don't know why I needed this, but then again I didn't even need a backup camera. I was just doing it because I could, and it was cheap). This is the source I came up with. There are 6 pins in a flat configuration, and the wire on one end is black, and the other is red. Using a voltmeter showed it to be a switched 12v.



Review of Headunit:
I was apprehensive about getting a Kenwood Navi Headunit, as all the previous years' models had people commenting on how slow it was. That, combined with the 'bubble' GUI threw me off. My criteria in my search was a double din, GPS capable (with speed limit displayed), modern GUI, and Bluetooth capable.

My first stop was the JVC KW-NT500HDT. The GUI was pretty dated, and the speed limit signs were only posted on interstate highways, with no "current speed" displayed. (I realize I can reference the speedometer- I shouldn't have to).

That pretty much left Kenwood as my only option. As a long time Garmin user, I was praying it'd be good enough so I could remove a redundant device in my car. The ASWC-1 preserved my steering wheel functionality on my 2012 WRX (minus the phone buttons, which Kenwood will not map) and I was off to the races.

The unit isn't lightning fast on startup, taking about 10 seconds before the map is displayed (but will display reverse camera video within 1 second). But once you're there, there is no sluggishness to be found. The sound is great (I think the JVC might've been a little better, but I've only had 2 days to play with the audio settings), and I am very pleased.

One minor point is, if you are putting in a backup camera, and powering it from the reverse light, don't expect it to automatically switch to it. You need the reverse gear sensor wire connected appropriately.

Pros: Awesome navigation, as good a GUI as can be found in car infotainment today, and pretty awesome sound.
Cons: I wish it would preserve steering wheel functionality such as answer and hangup. Making the PTT (push to talk) button correspond to the home button on the iPhone would be awesome, but I'd settle for on-hook and off-hook functionality.


Pictures of the Headunit in Action:






Let me know if you have any questions and thanks for all the helpful posts that were invaluable throughout the install!
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Last edited by jadawgis732; 04-28-2014 at 12:06 AM.
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Old 04-14-2014, 11:07 PM   #2
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Nice write up! I was just looking at these today for my other car, my DD. Never been a big fan of Kenwood, but I've heard some pretty good things about their newer models. Still gonna look around, but thanks for the review.
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:22 AM   #3
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Thanks for the writeup! Been looking at a few HU but with the mapping issues I might go with Pioneer.
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Old 04-16-2014, 08:47 PM   #4
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Default Phone buttons

Is that HU a 2013 model or a 2014 model? I wanna say the 2014 kenwood models have mapping for phone on hook and off hook, no PTT. but I could be wrong. I'm looking at one of the 2014 DVD HUs and I want to know if the 60$ it'll cost me to retain the SWC remote is worth it. Anyone know if SVXdc still makes those custom 70 7552 harnesses?

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Old 04-16-2014, 09:46 PM   #5
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I have been looking at the kenwood ddx371, ddx491hd and the lack of mapping for the on-hook off-hook is kind of a deal killer for me. I know it's not the exact same model as yours, but all the newer models have the Siri eyes free, and I really want to be able to map the PTT button on my steering wheel to Siri eyes free feature. Seems like a reasonable request to me, since they have a button for it on the front of the head unit. Guess I'll have to start over with my search, though I don't think any aftermarket stereo will activate Siri from the steering wheel.
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Old 04-17-2014, 06:49 PM   #6
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This is the just-released unit. I was the first reviewer on Amazon for it, and it just came out a few weeks back. All the other SWC functions work, except for on-hook, off-hook. Maybe my Metra unit is too old. Will try updating firmware...
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:14 PM   #7
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I could be wrong, it is just what I read while researching which HU i wanna get for my 2013 STi hatch. I'm looking at the Kenwood DDX5901HD or DDX8901HD, but I'm gonna be kinda disappointed if the freakin built in Bluetooth cant be operated by the SWC. If it cant not much point to bothering with the SWC integration in my opinion. I would try updating the firmware of the SWC module and see if that helps, I thought I read a forum post somewhere of someone having this issue then they got the on and off hook buttons to work. Please let me know if firmware update helps because I don't think I'll bother installing the Axxess ASWC-1 module I ordered until they update with a fix for this.

By the way, thanks for the info on the rear cam install. That will save me time if get one with the HU
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Old 04-18-2014, 09:05 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boborjoe View Post
I could be wrong, it is just what I read while researching which HU i wanna get for my 2013 STi hatch. I'm looking at the Kenwood DDX5901HD or DDX8901HD, but I'm gonna be kinda disappointed if the freakin built in Bluetooth cant be operated by the SWC. If it cant not much point to bothering with the SWC integration in my opinion. I would try updating the firmware of the SWC module and see if that helps, I thought I read a forum post somewhere of someone having this issue then they got the on and off hook buttons to work. Please let me know if firmware update helps because I don't think I'll bother installing the Axxess ASWC-1 module I ordered until they update with a fix for this.

By the way, thanks for the info on the rear cam install. That will save me time if get one with the HU
No worries. Firmware update did not solve the issues, but on the bright side, I got one of these to retain use of my USB in the center console. Also on the bright side, I found I had to switch source for apps and iPod to Bluetooth (rather than USB) to use my iPhone as an app source or an iPod source (so I can have coverflow, album art, upcoming tracks, etc.)

As far as not getting that headunit, because of the lack of on-hook, off-hook functionality, the volume, mode, and track buttons get used quite a bit more in my case than the answer or hang up buttons. I also attribute the lack of on-hook, off-hook to the amount of time this line of headunits has been out.

One other point I'd mention is that the Pioneer NEX line has Apple CarPlay coming to it this summer. That means you can buy one of those headunits now and expect a firmware update before long enabling this functionality. It'd really piss me off if Kenwood doesn't follow suit, or if they do, but only for future models. Anyway, good luck with this search.

P.S. As for the Metra 70-7552 custom harnesses, you can make your own by just ordering two and cannibalizing one. Beyond what the Metra 70-7552 gives you, you'll only end up using pins 4, 13, and 14.

Last edited by jadawgis732; 04-18-2014 at 09:34 PM.
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Old 04-18-2014, 09:32 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nate79dawg View Post
I have been looking at the kenwood ddx371, ddx491hd and the lack of mapping for the on-hook off-hook is kind of a deal killer for me. I know it's not the exact same model as yours, but all the newer models have the Siri eyes free, and I really want to be able to map the PTT button on my steering wheel to Siri eyes free feature. Seems like a reasonable request to me, since they have a button for it on the front of the head unit. Guess I'll have to start over with my search, though I don't think any aftermarket stereo will activate Siri from the steering wheel.
Wait, there's a button for Siri Eyes Free?? Thanks! And it absolutely does seem like a reasonable request. In fact, I made that very request to Kenwood a week or two back. The response basically said, we have what we have, if you want to forward these suggestions to the R&D department, here's their address.
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Old 04-19-2014, 05:10 PM   #10
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Do you happen to have a picture of where you mounted the camera? I want to get a feel for how it looks on the car.

I've just bought the same headunit and will be putting it in my car next week.
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Old 04-19-2014, 08:36 PM   #11
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I just got my aswc-1 today and was reading updates in firmware and it says there where updates at different times for both Kenwood Bluetooth functionality and oem Bluetooth button mapping. It still didn't work for you? That sucks! I ordered the DDX5901HD and I am going to hook up the aswc-1 to it anyways cause I have it. it says it has commands for all three Bluetooth buttons (generic) including PTT. must not be supported by the Kenwood HU. Hopefully Kenwood puts out a firmware update someday to address it.

As for the custom harness I ordered an extra off amazon and I literally just pulled 4 wires to implant in the second harness coming with the HU 5 mins before reading your post, lol. Thanks though for the info
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Old 04-19-2014, 08:44 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jadawgis732 View Post
In fact, I made that very request to Kenwood a week or two back. The response basically said, we have what we have, if you want to forward these suggestions to the R&D department, here's their address.
Thanks for your money, now sit on it an swivel? gotta love faceless corps. I had a lot of respect for Kenwood gear being right up there in terms of tech in the past (10 years ago) but they're leaving a sour taste in my mouth as of late. don't think the merger with JVC did them any good.
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Old 04-19-2014, 10:22 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by be0tch View Post
Do you happen to have a picture of where you mounted the camera? I want to get a feel for how it looks on the car.

I've just bought the same headunit and will be putting it in my car next week.
Sweet, let me know how you like it! It's dark out, and I really didn't think it was noticeable enough to take a picture of before, but sure, here ya go.


Quote:
Originally Posted by boborjoe View Post
I just got my aswc-1 today and was reading updates in firmware and it says there where updates at different times for both Kenwood Bluetooth functionality and oem Bluetooth button mapping. It still didn't work for you? That sucks! I ordered the DDX5901HD and I am going to hook up the aswc-1 to it anyways cause I have it. it says it has commands for all three Bluetooth buttons (generic) including PTT. must not be supported by the Kenwood HU. Hopefully Kenwood puts out a firmware update someday to address it.

As for the custom harness I ordered an extra off amazon and I literally just pulled 4 wires to implant in the second harness coming with the HU 5 mins before reading your post, lol. Thanks though for the info
Yeah, it does suck. Please let me know if you are able to get those three buttons to work.

As a software developer, I can tell you that if the functionality exists in the Kenwood to take those three inputs from SWC modules, then the onus is on Metra to come up with a solution. We know it maps outwards from the Subaru, and that it gets interpreted through the ASWC into the Kenwood (hey, the buttons do something, right?), it's just not performing the correct action on the headunit. My guess is that Metra, if they are actively supporting the unit, will release a firmware upgrade for all the recently released 2014 models in the coming weeks.


Moving on, I'm looking to fill in the low end, and I don't want to break the bank. I have had 2 10's in my last Subee, and 2 12's in my Jeep (and a different lifetime), but I'm older now, more...refined I'm thinking a single 10" should be plenty.

I can't decide between an Infinity Basslink, an enclosed 10", a Bazooka tube, or an 8" under the seat type. Ideally, I'd like to get the custom kick panel for the driver side of the trunk, but they're $350 alone. Add a 10" sub, an amp, and wiring, maybe a professional install (don't like the idea of routing wire through the firewall myself) and that's getting north of $600. I'd prefer to be able to do it all for < $400. Any advice?

Last edited by jadawgis732; 04-19-2014 at 10:34 PM.
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Old 04-20-2014, 03:30 PM   #14
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Regarding the mappings issue, this guy has some insight.
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Old 04-21-2014, 11:01 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jadawgis732 View Post
Wait, there's a button for Siri Eyes Free?? Thanks! And it absolutely does seem like a reasonable request. In fact, I made that very request to Kenwood a week or two back. The response basically said, we have what we have, if you want to forward these suggestions to the R&D department, here's their address.
Based on everything I looked at, if you push and hold the TEL button on the lower left side of the unit, it should activate Siri.
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Old 04-22-2014, 11:58 AM   #16
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Default sub option

I believe the Kicker designed OEM single 10 trunk box comes with a t harness that patches in between the forward and reverse radio harnesses in the dash to steal power, remote, and audio signal. I know the little under seat OEM subs do this but I believe the kicker 10 does as well ( don't quote me on it, hehe). if this is the case you wouldn't need to pull power from engine compartment. Whether or not you want to tax the power feed to your radio additionally is up to you. The kenwood head is already potentially pulling 22x4 watts rms plus whatever power it consumes to operate and I believe the 12V memory wire in dash is only 14 gauge (12 at most). I personally would not pull more than 12-15 amps max through a 14 gauge and that is probably more than it is rated for, but it should be fused so if it blows the fuse you'll know why. So if I'm correct about the t harness it would save you some money on an install, assuming you don't mind running those wires to the dash.

I am personally thinking about adding 1-2 of the kenwood KSC-sw11 compacted subs under the seats. It is a 75 W rms powered 8 x 5 1/4 oval sub in a rather compact design, think its like 12 x 8 X 2 3/4 inches. believe freq response is 35-150 hz with an impressive 110dB sensitivity. amazon has them on "sale" right now for 155 $ each. If anyone has any experience with these I would like some input. not looking for a lot of bass just enough to fill in lows cause I don't necessarily want below 80-100 hz coming from the door speakers (planning on putting in Rockford fosgate punch series 6 3/4). there are a number of different compact powered enclosures available that should fit under the seats, I think you could potentially get one up to 150w rms (kicker makes a 150w 8 in but I'm not sure it will fit) under there. I just like how small the kenwood design is, should not even be seen and people in back seat shouldn't be able to kick it. The Kenwood one it the most compact design on the market that I've seen. Also, a lot of the 100-150 w designs have sensitivities in 85-95 dB range so what kind of sound output is the increased power getting you? The kenwood unit also includes a harness that has a 16' fused power feed, 16' remote feed, 5 ' ground; all you would need to get is RCA wires. You would be stuck routing a 10 gauge wire to the battery though unless you don't mind stealing 75 w RMS from the 12 V memory circuit in the dash, again if the fuse blows you'll know why. I know the OEM under seat sub get there power there but I don't know how much power ( whether they have a just a woofer or if there is an amp in there). But again I would think your kenwood HU is drawing more power than the OEM HU and 75 W is over 6 amps @ 12v, don't know that I would do it. If someone could provide these OEM component power consumptions that may help.

Last edited by boborjoe; 04-22-2014 at 12:29 PM.
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Old 04-22-2014, 07:43 PM   #17
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Thanks for the pic. I've bought a similar camera. Will update with the install and my impressions.
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Old 04-22-2014, 08:13 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nate79dawg View Post
Based on everything I looked at, if you push and hold the TEL button on the lower left side of the unit, it should activate Siri.
That's correct. Only it's not an unadulterated Siri. Siri's been adulterated! Just kidding. Seriously though, it's Kenwood overlaying Siri, and you've got to prompt it to return to the music when you're done using her.

After looking at reviews for way too long I decided to forgo the idea of a powered loaded subwoofer. They just have too high of a failure rate, from what I've seen. I wanted to be able to diagnose the issue if something goes wrong. Having both the amp and the sub in the same unit makes that impossible. If I were to go that route I'd probably opt for the MTX ThunderLink or the Infinity Basslink.

Instead I purchased the
Pioneer TS-SWX251Pioneer TS-SWX251
and will power it with a
Boss Audio T11100MBoss Audio T11100M
. The amp is super cheapo, by a company I've never heard of, but at that price, and with it being the #1 seller in Amazon's audio section, and having a good rating, I can't really go wrong.

Quote:
Originally Posted by boborjoe View Post
The Kenwood one it the most compact design on the market that I've seen. Also, a lot of the 100-150 w designs have sensitivities in 85-95 dB range so what kind of sound output is the increased power getting you? The kenwood unit also includes a harness that has a 16' fused power feed, 16' remote feed, 5 ' ground; all you would need to get is RCA wires. You would be stuck routing a 10 gauge wire to the battery though unless you don't mind stealing 75 w RMS from the 12 V memory circuit in the dash, again if the fuse blows you'll know why.
I threw out the idea of the Kenwood one since it is only a 6x9" subwoofer. The
wiring kitwiring kit
I purchased, again the most popular on Amazon in its category only cost $11. And this video convinced me it would be easy enough to run the wiring to an amp:

I think people who get into car audio abhor those powered, self-contained subwoofers because they limit your options once installed. Also I would highly advise against powering a sub from anything but your battery.

EDIT: It's actually an 8-1/4" x 5-1/8" subwoofer. It's only 75W RMS. This seems like a pretty bad deal. The reason I rejected the under the seat mounted options were because sound waves need air to turn from vibrations into sound. Having a seat right on top of the subwoofer limits its ability to accomplish this.

Last edited by jadawgis732; 04-22-2014 at 08:41 PM.
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Old 04-22-2014, 08:47 PM   #19
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Polk audio has an ebay outlet store where you can pick up cheap amps, subs and even some separates. I'm not crazy about their db series, but the MM series subs are actually quite good for the money and don't require much volume. I have a 10" mm sub that I ran in my last car. It was plenty loud in my wagon, but won't be as loud playing through the back seat of the sedan. I've never had one of their amps, but they're pretty darn cheap on their ebay outlet...
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Old 04-22-2014, 10:20 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jadawgis732 View Post
EDIT: It's actually an 8-1/4" x 5-1/8" subwoofer. It's only 75W RMS. This seems like a pretty bad deal. The reason I rejected the under the seat mounted options were because sound waves need air to turn from vibrations into sound. Having a seat right on top of the subwoofer limits its ability to accomplish this.
I'm still planning on getting the kenwood excelon xr series amps. I like the overall size, and all connections and adjustment bits are on the same side. I think these amps are ideal for underseat installs, while maintaining the capability to make adjustments as necessary. You'll spend quite a bit more than $400, but, you get what you pay for.

Also, running wire through the firewall is generally pretty easy. Most cars have grommet near the brake pedal you can poke a hole in for the amps power.
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Old 04-24-2014, 04:22 AM   #21
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Default got a question about the ASCW-1

When you wired the ASWC-1 to your DNX571HD did you use the female 3.5mm plug adapter and wire to the blue/yellow remote connection wire in the harness like the ASWC-1 install instructions says? The DDX5901HD manual shows that it has a 3.5 mm input dedicated for SWC input as well as the blue/yellow wire in the wire harness, I assume the DNX571HD is the same. Curious if I can just plug in to this dedicated jack and insulate the blue/yellow wire. My interpretation is that they are redundant connections to make it more universal. I'm just wondering how you connected it.

Also, Did you ground the parking brake safety circuit to bypass it? want to know if this still works on the new models.
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Old 04-24-2014, 11:00 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by boborjoe View Post
When you wired the ASWC-1 to your DNX571HD did you use the female 3.5mm plug adapter and wire to the blue/yellow remote connection wire in the harness like the ASWC-1 install instructions says? The DDX5901HD manual shows that it has a 3.5 mm input dedicated for SWC input as well as the blue/yellow wire in the wire harness, I assume the DNX571HD is the same. Curious if I can just plug in to this dedicated jack and insulate the blue/yellow wire. My interpretation is that they are redundant connections to make it more universal. I'm just wondering how you connected it.

Also, Did you ground the parking brake safety circuit to bypass it? want to know if this still works on the new models.
Yes, I did use the female 3.5mm connector, and connected it to the blue/yellow wire on the back of the unit. I didn't see a connector for the SWC like there was on the JVC I had originally purchased. And yep, I grounded the parking brake safety circuit. I grounded the ASWC and the parking brake to the black wire coming from the factory harness. Hasn't caused any issues.
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Old 04-27-2014, 07:39 PM   #23
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So I've installed the amp and sub, sounds great! I also got around to replacing the badges. Took the idea from the 2015 WRX concept, and I think it looks pretty good. I saw a pretty awesome idea for a removable sub mounting mechanism on another forum. It makes use of 'sash locks' which are basically window locks. Let me know if you have any questions. If you have an issue with the wiring, you're welcome to come clean it up. Until next weekend I'm not going to be dealing with it.







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Old 05-01-2014, 08:35 PM   #24
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I've installed it now. I'm impressed with the sound and gui, also the speed. Backup cam function is very cool.
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Old 05-01-2014, 11:33 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by be0tch View Post
I've installed it now. I'm impressed with the sound and gui, also the speed. Backup cam function is very cool.
Nice! Did you get phone SWC's to work?

Update:
So I've gotten sick enough of the stock tweeters to do something about it. Picked up a Rockford Fosgate R400-4D, a set of Alpine Type R 6.5" Components, some Fatmat (Dynamat knockoff) to cover the doors, and two pairs of 10' RCA's to run to the amp.

Current plan is to mount the amp under the front driver's seat, channel 1 and 2 go to the Alpines, 3 and 4 get bridged and run to the sub.

I was worried about how to run speaker wire to the front speakers, but have it on good authority that the standard way of doing this is to run the speaker wires from the amp back to the headunit, cut out the two channels on the headunit (FL and FR), and tap into the harness to power the front speakers. This seems like a clean implementation and accomplishes what I need to do.

Will update with pics once I have the fatmat and a solid plan. Oh, and my schedule cleared out for the entire weekend

Last edited by jadawgis732; 05-03-2014 at 10:59 PM.
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