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Old 07-27-2011, 10:03 AM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 91212
Join Date: Jul 2005
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Martinsburg, WV
2011 WRX 5DR
Satin White Pearl

Default Install Log: 2011 5DR (Revised)

See http://www.subaruaudio.net/my-wrx/audio-system/ for more info!

After creating my initial install log (which was up to 4 pages) and having much of the information get outdated, I decided to do a new thread where I break down the different elements of the system into individual posts.

This post is about the basic system, layout, goals, etc. Posts below will be for specific parts- HU, door speakers, amplifier, subwoofer, wiring, deadening, etc.

So for the basic System Concept:

I have a 2-hour daily commute. I primarily listen to talk radio in the AM and either alternative/rock/country on my afternoon commute, or to a USB drive with basically the same types of music. I do want BT integration, and I don't (currently) have an iPod other then my shuffle for the gym.

I wanted a good, basic system that does not cut into the usable space in the car. I also cart around my 2 young kids, so loud is not as important as clean and clear sound. I also don't want to have to hack up any of the stock parts nor to add tweeters in non-stock locations. They SQ may not be the best with this approach, but I want it to all look 100% stock.

Headunit: Clarion CX609. I went with this due to its basic layout, color-match to the dash, and the core features that it has. It has a few drawbacks (512 file limit in USB being the main one), but otherwise, it seems like a good, basic HU for my needs. I got it on sale at Crutchfield for a great price. Subwoofer crossover and level control built-in and enough power to run the rear speakers. I considered more flashy headunits, as well as some DVD units, but the basic layout of the Clarion really had me impressed. Reviews on it were good, and the radio and BT clarity seem to be major strengths.

I also bought a Metra Axxess SWC. Bought this (and the extra BT wires) from DavidC (SVXdc on here) and wired it up.

I also purchased and installed a JDM bezel panel to clean up the look of the install.

Amplifier: Boston Acoustics GTA-504. 50W x 4 at 4 ohms, bridgable to 160x1 for the subwoofer. Should fit under the front seat and will be enough to run a small sub and a set of components in the front doors. I also bought this from Crutchfield due to a 1/2 price sale and $35 in gift cards.

Front stage: Rainbow CSX 265 components. I bought these at the recommendation of a fellow moderator on another site who sells a lot of high-end gear. I was originally going to go with SLC165 coaxials, but he talked me into components. I considered the SLX 265 Deluxe components and the SLC 265 components, but the SLC tweeters would not fit in the stock locations. He recommended stepping up from the SLX to the CSX due to the woofer construction.

Rear speakers: Stock for now. May do the Polk dB coaxials in the future, btu not too likely.

Subwoofer: In the end I went with the Earthquake SWS 10x shallow mount subwoofer. This was one of the few 10" subs that would fit in the enclosure that I selected. Reviews on it have been consistently good, it has been tested in the enclosure that I purchased.

I considered several other subs, even buying a Pioneer TS-SW841D shallow sub and attempting to build an underseat box for it. In addition to the Pioneer and the Earthquake, I considered Tang Band 10" and 8" shallow mount subs from partsexpress (these were still in consideration when I found a good deal on the Pioneer), elemental designs SQ10 (out of stock for months) and e3.8 (too deep), Kenwood Excelon shallow subs (needed too large of a box), and the 10" Pioneer shallow mount sub.

Enclosure: After a significant amount of searching, evaluating, and researching, I purchased a used fiberglass spare tire enclosure made by JSEnclosures. I had contacted JSE about making an enclosure, but when this one came up for sale, complete with a spare hatch cover and subwoofer, I jumped on it.

I also considered the underseat option (could not get the space that I needed for ANY sub) and the Audio Integrations enclosure. The AI enclosure was a great option, but I could not stomach losing that area of the hatch, plus exposing the sub and enclosure to stuff in the hatch and prying eyes.

In the end, the in-spare option worked out the best for me considering cost, weight, and space.

Last edited by phenryiv1; 02-03-2012 at 12:00 PM.
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