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Audio/Headunit: Frequently Asked Questions! Have A Question? Look Here First!

Old 12-01-2011, 07:55 PM
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Audio/Headunit: Frequently Asked Questions! Have A Question? Look Here First!

For anyone living in Central Florida (or willing to drive), I'd be happy to give you face-to-face help with your car audio problems/upgrades. PM me.

Speaker sizes & specs:

base radio:
  • front mids: 6x8", hole is 5x375" x 7.625" (door photo)
    • 5x7" speakers will also work, it's the same mounting holes as 6x8"
  • front tweeters: 1" (photo in sailpod)
  • rear mids: 6x9" (photo)
  • all speakers are 4ohm impedance
Bose radio:
  • front mids: 9", hole is about 8.4" diameter (door photo, photos of speaker and speaker opening & more)
    • impedance: .5 ohms
  • front tweeters: 2"
    • impedance: 4 ohms
  • rear mids: 6x9" (photo)
    • impedance: 2 ohms
  • rear tweeters: 2" (photo, another rear tweeters & mids photo)
    • impedance: 4 ohms
  • front center speaker: 3", but you can make a 4" fit (photo)
    • impedance: 4 ohms
  • Bose amp location: Main amp is in the trunk next to the right rear speaker. Two smaller amps are in each door and are used to power the Bose 9" woofers.

Front mounting depth (Base and Bose system): 3" safe, about 3.125" to glass (distance to window glass. deeper speakers can probably be mounted with a baffle)

What parts can I replace? (Bose and non-Bose):
Non-Bose system: Anything. Any of the speakers or the headunit may be replaced with any aftermarket equipment without any special precautions.

Bose system: The front tweeters, center speaker, rear 6x9's and headunit may be be replaced with any aftermarket equipment. The front 9" woofers in the doors and the rear Bose amp cannot be replaced alone with aftermarket.

Head unit:

Stock car harness is J-01:Aftermarket harnesses:
  • doesn't look like we're going to get an actual RX8 specific harness from Metra or Scosche other than what comes with the Metra kit, but you can use any J-01 harness (e.g. one for 2003 Proteges)
  • existing harnesses are missing a lot of pins from the top 2 center rows (the smaller pins)
  • harness, into car:
    • Scosche MA03B (only has 2 pins in top 2 rows)
    • Metra Turbowire 70-7903 (has 3 pins in top 2 rows)
  • reverse harness, into radio:
    • Scosche MA03RB (only has 2 pins in top 2 rows)
    • Best Kits BHO7902 (only has 2 pins in top 2 rows)
    • Metra Turbowire 71-7903 (not sure about pins)
Stock headunit:Installing an aftermarket headunit:
  • Removing stock headunit breaks A/C and heater operation. An aftermarket installation kit is required when replacing Bose or non-Bose factory headunits to retain all stock functions, except steering wheel controls. In order to retain full steering wheel controls, you must also purchase an adapter to be installed with the Metra kit. The exact one will depend on what brand headunit you're installing, but PAC Audio makes them all. Factory navi will be unaffected when replacing the headunit.
  • The following headunit replacement kits are available:
    • Metra dash kit (A must read for those with Bose) (<--- Some have reported induced whines/noise with that method, here's another option)
      -They actually offer 4 different versions of the Metra RX8 kit. They offer piano black and flat black versions of both single and double din kits. The model numbers are as follows:
      95-7510 = Double din flat black
      95-7510HG = Double din high-gloss black
      99-7510 = Single din flat black
      99-7510HG = Single din high-gloss black
      However the kit has had some reported problems here and there. Many have reported their disappointment with the color/finish match on the kit. Also, several have reported issues with their HVAC systems malfunctioning. Visit this thread for more info. Please be aware there has been many satisfied customers as well, so don't think the kit is total garbage. There has been several firmware version updates released. Please ensure you're getting a kit with the latest firmware or you plan on updating it yourself.
    • Corksport Kit (only option for those with automatic climate controls)
    • Kanatech RX-8 Car AV Installation Set, (this is same as Corksport's kit) can possibly still be ordered via Japanparts

- Common problems with the Metra kit

Clock does not keep time, runs slow, runs fast: This is a common problem that Metra acknowledges. The firmware of the axxess box needs to be updated. This can be done by sending the Axxess box to Metra for them to update free of charge, or you can purchase the small update cable online and update the firmware yourself. However, the cable is known to run about 50 bucks.
Older versions of the Metra kit had a poor piano black finish on the faceplate. Here's a picture. As you can see, the finish has pretty bad orange peel. This was corrected in their newer kits. No model numbers were changed so we have no way of knowing how old the kit is until you buy it and see for yourself.
Many users have reported problems with various features of their HVAC systems after installation of this kit. Sometimes it's the rear defroster, or recirculation, or A/C button, etc etc. No end-all fix has been found. Some people solve their problem by simply exchanging the Axxess box for a new one. Others seem to have their problem fixed with a simple firmware update (explained above). And still others just live with it.

- How to remove headunit.
Headunit removal. Obviously ignore the IceLink stuff if you're not installing an ipod module.
Another headunit walkthrough


Basic Installation:

Amp installation:

How to properly splice existing factory wires. Those replacing factory speakers READ ME!!!

Front speaker installation:
Rear speaker installation:

Door/system wire colors:
  • base radio:
    • Door left: +R -W (tweeter same)
    • Door right +W/B -Y/R (tweeter same)
    • Rear left +V -P
    • Rear right +W/L -B/L
  • Bose radio:
    • Door tweet left +R -W (door speaker connected direct to amp)
    • Door tweet right +W/R -Y/R (door speaker connected direct to amp)
    • Centre mid +L/B -G/Y
    • Rear left +V -P (tweeters are co-axial, same colors)
    • Rear right +W/L -B/L (tweeters are co-axial, same colors)
Subwoofer/amp installation examples/guides:

- I want more bass. What are my options?
-List of RX8 specific subwoofer boxes

- Adding an aftermarket amp to the factory headunit (Bose and without Bose) / What is a line output converter (LOC)?
So you want to install an aftermarket amplifier, but your factory radio does not have RCA connections. What do you do? You use a line output converter. Also commonly called a source level converter. Features and build quality aside, all line output converters (LOC) accept a regular speaker wire input and convert it into an RCA connection. Now it's as simple as plugging your RCA cables into the LOC and then into your amplifier. But which LOC should I buy? What's the difference? Basically, we can split LOC into two categories: powered and non-powered. Powered LOC require a separate +12V source be ran to it for power. Non-powered does not require this.

A majority of LOC on the market are the simple non-powered design. If you walk into a car audio store and ask for a line output converter, you'll be getting a non-powered one. They are cheap and are generally effective. Prices usually range from about $15-$35. Here is an example of one.

As you can see, it just requires that you splice into your existing factory speaker wires to "hi-jack" the signal, to which it converts into RCA connections on the other side. Almost every LOC will have two or more potentiometers on it to allow the user to increase or decrease the signal strength being output to the amp. For those users only looking to add subwoofers to their factory stereo, these non-powered LOC's are the perfect choice.

For a slightly more elaborate setup involving replacement of the factory speakers/amp, using a powered LOC is recommended. These quality products generally offer many useful features such as adjustable crossover points, equalizing options and signal summing. The RCA signal output from these are generally much stronger than what a non-powered LOC is capable of. Here is an example:

The above picture is the Audiocontrol LC6i. Some other options are the Rockford Fosgate 360.1 or 360.2 and the JL Audio Cleansweep.

For those with the Bose system, it is to the users advantage to "hi-jack" their signal prior to entering the Bose amplifier in the rear of the car. The Bose amplifier adds some wild EQ curves to an otherwise smooth output from the Bose headunit. For those just adding subwoofers, this many not be an issue. However those replacing all Bose speakers and using all aftermarket amplifiers will want to have an even frequency curve to input into their aftermarket amps. The very best way to do this is to purchase one of the powered LOC mentioned above and tap into your factory speaker wires prior to them entering the Bose amp. Most of those LOC will "add" or "sum" all the signals on each speaker wire together, then split them up into separate RCA connections for Front, Rear, and Subwoofer out. For those people using a non-powered LOC, it is best to tap AFTER the Bose amp. The signal coming from the stock Bose headunit is low level. It is simply not strong enough to use without a powered LOC.

A great thread discussing this

So to recap, powered LOCs tap in before the Bose amp. Non-powered LOCs tap after the Bose amp.

How to properly splice existing factory wires. Those tapping into Bose wiring READ ME!!!

- iPod integration modules available.
Many of the following modules require that your factory headunit's firmware be greater than 9.55. To find out which revision your Mazda RX-8 has, make sure the radio (FM) is turned on, then press and hold "TEXT." Then, also press and hold "1" at the same time for a few more seconds. The LCD should then report your firmware version.
Walkthrough on how to install ANY of these integration modules

XCarLink (formally AudioLink) = Retains steering wheel controls, charges iPod, options available for USB, mini-jack, video, bluetooth, and iPod connections. No song data displayed on RX8 readout above headunit. Will not work with below 9.55, 9.81, or 10.01 firmware.
Dension IceLink
DICE Electronics = Pretty much identical to the XCarLink but the R2 kit advertises that it will show song data on the RX8's screen above the headunit.
Axxess = Biggest advantage of this module is that it connects via the MiniDisc/Tape port on the rear of the factory headunit vice using the Satellite Radio port that every other one uses. So if you have the Satellite Radio option, you can now have iPod too! Displays song data on RX8 display. Retains Steering wheel controls, etc.
Neo Prolink
GROM Audio = Identical to the XCarLink. They also offer a USB style connector.
Mazda DOES offer an iPod integration kit very similar to all of these.
AuxMod will work with any firmware version
CD hack - iPod mod will work with any firmware version
Beefed up version of CD hack - iPod mod to include more control and works with any firmware version.

Last edited by firebirdude; 04-03-2013 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 12-01-2011, 07:56 PM
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- Making adapter plates for front Bose woofers
The front door speakers on RX8's equipped with the Bose system are 9" woofers. They are also very shallow for a woofer of that diameter. This is a very uncommon shape for aftermarket replacements. It is recommended that one install a 6.5" component set in it's place. The 6.5" woofer will install in place of the 9" woofer and the tweeter will replace the factory Bose tweeter. Adapter plates must be made in order to mount the new, smaller, woofer in the door. DO NOT make the adapter rings out of wood. Moisture will enter the door panel and warp/ruin them over time. Plexiglass or Lexan is recommended. These items can be found at Home Depot or Lowes. They are commonly sold in the window department. Do not attempt to use the thinnest sheet they sell. (0.094 I believe) That stuff chips, cracks and crumbles to bits between installation and daily vibration abuse. The next thickness up is about 0.224. This is much stronger and highly recommended. Once you have the proper materials, it's pretty obvious what we're trying to do. You need to cut the product into a circular shape roughly 9" in diameter so it can be mounted using the screw holes the 9" woofer used. Then cut a smaller hole in the center of it just large enough to mount your new 6.5" woofer in place. Measure twice and cut once. I found a jigsaw to be easy to work with. Use a fine tooth blade. It helps greatly to slowly pour ice water over the blade/cut as you are cutting. This keeps the blade and plastic cool and helps prevent the plastic from melting and rejoining right behind the cut you just made. When drilling holes, start with the smallest drill bit you have as a pilot. Do a quality job the first time so you won't be tearing the door apart again later.

- Front Bose speakers cutting out? No bass from Bose system?
DIY: Bose speakers in the doors not working? $1.67 relay fix.

- Can I install the factory navigation system from another RX8 into my non-navi RX8?

Is it possible? Yes, it has been done. Is it worth the labor? Absolutely not. The factory navigation is dated and never was as user friendly as anything aftermarket. In addition, the installation of the navigation pop-up screen, gps antenna, navigation dvd player, touchpad, wiring harnesses, etc makes it a lose/lose. It's simply not worth all the effort and cost, to install an inferior navigation system. It is recommended to simply replace the factory headunit with an aftermarket double-din unit with built in navigation or purchase an outboard stand alone GPS such as one made by Garmin or Magellan.

- I removed and re-installed my factory headunit and now certain buttons/amber display doesn't work!

The actual face of the factory headunit is a separate piece from the actual CD player hardware. Like aftermarket faceplates, the connection is made with a set of male/female push pins. If, while pushing on the center of the faceplate, your display/buttons work again, this is certainly your problem. If pushing on the face of the headunit doesn't help, it is still advised to remove the headunit again and ensure the faceplate is tightly secured to the CD hardware.
The top amber colored display gets its info from a ribbon cable. This is another thing that is commonly bumped lose during headunit removal. Remove the headunit and A/C vents and ensure the ribbon cable is secure.

- What are some recommendations on brand names?

This list is by no means designed to be all inclusive, but rather to help those that may be just starting out or have been out of the hobby for a number of years. Also, some brand names make many lines of equipment from low-end to high-end. Price being your big clue obviously. Additionally, some brands may produce one piece of equipment very well and other pieces not so much. Great headunits for examples, but low quality speakers or amps. I'll try to note those where I can. Though everyone may not agree on my suggestions, this is just a ballpark.

Top tier: Focal, Diamond, Rainbow, Morel, CDT Audio, Arc Audio, Boston Acoustics, MMats, Zapco, USAmps, Polk, RE Audio, JL Audio, Image Dynamics, JBL, Infinity, Digital Designs

Mid tier: Diamond, CDT Audio, Boston Acoustics, Alpine, Rockford Fosgate, Kicker, Kenwood, Pioneer, Sony (headunits), Polk, RE Audio, JL Audio, Bazooka (subwoofers), Image Dynamics, JBL, Infinity, Soundstream, MB Quart

Bottom tier (avoid): Jenson, Pyle, Pyramid, Rockwood, Dual, Sony (everything except headunits), Visionik, Volfenhag, Crunch, Soundstorm, Lightening Audio, Bazooka (everything except subwoofers), Boss, XO Vision, Audiovox, MTX (sorry, it's true), Eclipse (sorry, it's true)

- Satellite radio connection options for the stock headunit
  • Adding-on the factory satellite radio equipment: First, your headunit must be satellite ready. You must have the SAT button on your headunit. 2004 and early 2005 RX8's did not come with this, and as such, their headunit would have to be swapped out with a newer one before adding any additional equipment (SAT equipped vehicles production date 8/1/2004 (VIN 50143221)). Second, just because your headunit already has the SAT button, it does not mean you have all the satellite radio equipment installed and can just start your subscription. If you cannot hear the Sirius ad channel when pressing the button, you don't have the equipment installed. Those looking to add the equipment will need part numbers 0000-81-G01B (~$300) and 0000-81-K02B (~$12).
  • Adding an outboard satellite radio receiver: Any outboard sat radio receiver can be used with the RX8 factory headunit. All of the receivers have a built-in FM transmitter BUT THEY SUCK. You will want a hard wired connection for the best sound quality satellite radio can offer. Couple ways you can do this. First method is to use the XM or Sirius FM adapter kit. This will sit in-line with your headunit's antenna plug. For XM sat receivers, the kit is XMFM1. For Sirius receivers, the kit is FMDA25. From here, use the suction cup the kit came with or purchase one of the many aftermarket brackets to hold your receiver in a desirable location. Another method to achieve the same sound quality is to install one of the RX8 iPod adapters that feature a 3.5mm headphone plug. Most satellite receivers have a 3.5mm headphone plug, so this would enable you to listen to satellite radio OR your iPod with the same connector.

- What's a CarPC? How can I install one in my RX8?
A CarPC or Carputer is simply a custom computer that one builds and integrates into the car to control all A/V functions and possibly engine parameter monitoring. The main computer is usually hidden away in the trunk, glove box or under the dash and the monitor is either mounted in the factory navigation location or using the Metra headunit replacement kit.
-What gauge power wire should I use with my aftermarket amp?
Before selecting what gauge power wire you should use, it is important to understand that not all wire is created equal. Generic brands generally use thicker insulation and less copper to make it appear to be the same size, when in fact it's not. Also note that some use a large mix of aluminum and copper (maybe 90%-10% mix) rather than pure copper (98+%). This lowers the total amperage carrying capacity of the wire greatly. Now, we need to calculate the maximum possible current draw of the amplifier(s) in your system. Most every aftermarket amplifier has one or more fuses along the side of it. Add up the fuse values for all amplifiers in your system. For example, your subwoofer amp has two 40 amp fuses and your cabin speaker amp has three 20 amp fuses. Your total maximum possible current draw amount is 140 amps. Take that number, along with the total length of the main power wire run, and find your wire gauge on the table below. (note this is for 100% copper wire. If your wire is mixed, bump up one size) It is also important to use the same size ground wire and you use for power wire.


-Where should I tap into in my fuse box to get power?


- How to remove the rear seats :

Pull straight up on the front of the bottom cushion (point A). Sometimes it's a little stiff, but give it a solid jerk upward. Now remove the bottom cushions from the car. Remove the two bolts from the bottom of each seat back (total of four bolts). Push the seat back straight up towards the car's headliner. As you can see in the above pic, each seat back has small little "hooks" that clip in similar in the way the seat bottom clipped in. Once they're unclipped, remove the seat back from the car. Install in reverse order. Ensure both seat parts and actually clipped down into place. Give them a solid push downward until you hear/feel the snap.

- How can I disassemble my cloth seats?

- What Optima battery should I use?
If you want to install an Optima battery (red or yellow top), the Optima 35R is the correct size to use with the RX8. You will also need the height adapter tray that is often included with the battery (although I've seen them sold without the tray too). The "R" stands for reverse. Meaning the side post terminals are on the opposite side from normal. Without the reverse terminals, you would be forced to extend your battery cables in order to connect them to the battery. Although some owners have recently reported success with the non-reverse Optima red top. The yellow top is rated at 650 CCA and the red top is rated at 720 CCA. The red top is a high quality battery that is maintenance free, vibration resilient, and can be mounted in any orientation. The yellow offers these same features, but also has a deep cycle ability. This means that it can be drained completely dead and then recharged without any adverse effects to the battery. This can be done repeatedly. In more common terms, the battery has no memory effect like most other car batteries do. If you plan on playing your system/having electronics on without the car running, by all means, the yellow top is the better option. If you never have any electronics on once the car is turned off, you will not notice any advantages of the yellow top over the red top. In fact, the red top offers a higher CCA rating and is less expensive. It would be the better choice in this situation.

- Hardwiring radar detector / Mounting radar detectors
Essentially you're just wiring +12V accessory (power only when key is on) and ground to the radar detector. One note though, some radar detectors run off +12VDC and others off +5VDC. You should either buy the hardwire kit specially made for your specific radar detector OR you can wire your ACC and ground connections directly to the cigarette lighter plug the radar came with. +12V on the nipple or tip of the plug and ground to the outer pressure plates on the sides. Stash it all under the dash and run the radar power wire to wherever you have the radar mounted. The cigarette lighter plug steps the +12 down to +5V. It's exactly the same as if it were plugged into the cigarette lighter.
How to hardwire your radar detector and mount near center windshield
Country Joy Crafts super solid radar detector mount. There are two mounting sizes offered. RX8 owners have debated about the correct sizes for certain year RX8's. But it IS confirmed that Mazda has used both size mirror posts in the RX8. So you will need to measure your rear-view mirror post with a tape measure and find out yourself.
Blendmount is anther option for mounting your radar detector.

- Headlights dimming with bass? Charging system upgrades/ High Output Alternators
The stock alternator is rated at 100amps. When shopping for a high output alternator, it is of the utmost importance to find out the amperage output AT IDLE. I have run across many alternators that are labeled as high output, which in fact are, but only at 2k RPM and above. While sitting at idle they actually output LESS amperage then the factory alternator! A complete waste of money for the car audio world if your headlights dim everytime you're stopped at a streetlight.

Irragi Alternators the RX8 is not specifically listed in these, but the owner has been contacted and says they can make them. Price quoted was $419-$459 for 180-220amp. I have personally used their alternators in past vehicles of mine with many years of great success. Another option for the 8 is the ProPower alternator. The group buy may be over, but the alternators are still being made. So it's another option. Ohio Generator also has been making quality H/O alternators for years. Give them a call and I'm 100% positive they will be able to provide you with an alternator that will fit into the RX8.

- SAFELY installing remote start on a manual trans RX8 AND operating with factory keyfob!

- Auto window up/down with the factory keyfob

- Installing sound deadening in the RX8

- How to remove door panels

- How to make your windows have one-touch down AND UP!

- No heat? No A/C? This may be your fix!

- How to remove your headliner

- Navi System FAQ

- Replacing interior and exterior bulbs with LEDs

- How to replace red LEDs in factory headunit Another one

- Replace the red LEDs behind your factory dash cluster

- DIY Footwell LEDs for $10!

- How to code a NEW KEYFOB yourself!

- How to fix center armrest slanted/broken button

Last edited by firebirdude; 10-29-2012 at 07:29 AM.
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Old 12-01-2011, 07:57 PM
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reserved for future postings due to character limit
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Old 12-01-2011, 09:45 PM
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Subscribed for later so I don't lose it. I'm going to bed now but I want to read this later. Thanks for the write-up seems very informative.
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Old 01-01-2012, 12:57 PM
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to get the firmware version of my 2004 RX8, (my version is 9.53) I press the text button along with the "1" button. Are there any other hidden features of the audio system? I tried pressing text button as well as "3" button and the display changed and caused my audio volume to shoot up... Not sure what function invoked... Please help
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Old 01-12-2012, 03:37 PM
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Ex son in law stole the cable that connects MP3 player/iPod....where can I get a replacement?
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Old 01-12-2012, 04:14 PM
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w00t- excellent write up!
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Old 01-21-2012, 01:49 PM
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Hey guys been looking around for the answer to my question but can't seem to find it. I have a navone LOC and found all the info needed on tapping the speaker wires but can't find any info on where to tap the power and ground for the LOC ? Getting ready to do my install today but need my question answered first. Thanks in advance for any help.
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Old 01-21-2012, 05:17 PM
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Get it from anywhere you want. Under "Amp installation" above, there is a section for remote turn on leads. These are simply wires that are hot only when the key is in ACC position. If you don't have the Bose system, then you're left with the rear cig lighter. You can get the ground from the cig lighter if you want, or just chassis it out.
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Old 01-21-2012, 05:22 PM
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Thanks for the response, I have the Bose system....can I tap into the Bose amp wires for the remote, power or ground ?
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Old 01-21-2012, 05:26 PM
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Did you read under "Amp installation" like I said? Must not have...

Also note that the pink/black and yellow/white wires on the Bose amp inputs are hot only when ignition is on.
There's two options for the power and/or remote line. You can ground anywhere you want.
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Old 01-21-2012, 06:09 PM
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One more question, are the rear speaker wires that are behind the back seats preamp ? Or can I tap into those ? Seems hard to tap into the wires coming out of the speakers since they are pretty small.
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Old 01-24-2012, 04:32 PM
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Does anyone know the dimensions of the bose amp? I would go out and measure them, but right now I'm living at my house near my school's campus and do not even have a ruler here :/

I plan to get an amp that will be able to be mounted in place of the bose amp.
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Old 01-24-2012, 04:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Stars25 View Post
Does anyone know the dimensions of the bose amp? I would go out and measure them, but right now I'm living at my house near my school's campus and do not even have a ruler here :/

I plan to get an amp that will be able to be mounted in place of the bose amp.
9" x 6" including the harnesses sticking out one side. But there's plenty of room around it. You could probably go up to ~ 14" x 9" without problems. If you space it down a touch, you could fit even larger. Lunchboxcritter just did this exact thing.
https://www.rx8club.com/series-i-interior-audio-electronics-24/subwoofer-enclosure-build-inside-213721/page5/
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Old 01-26-2012, 04:13 PM
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Thanks!

When I install my Kappa four in place of the bose amp, would I just be able to use the power, ground, and remote turn on wires that are already there? I know the Kappa four "says" 4-gauge wire is required for installation but I figured I could just get away with not having to run all new wires.
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Old 01-26-2012, 05:14 PM
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Unfortunately no. You must run a much heavier gauge power and ground wire to the amp. Factory Bose wiring is, what, 12 gauge??! I would recommend just running the 4 gauge and be done with it. Here's a great website for wiring.
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Old 01-29-2012, 09:08 PM
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Does anyone have any detailed info on the H/F Tel Mute pin? Any voltage or signal info that is transmitted to the factory Bose radio would be great. The aftermarket radio has a push button switch that has to be used for the pust to talk features of the radio. It is a simple switch with two wires. One for positive and one for ground I would assume. I am researching the radio side to make sure. Just wanting to utilize that button if I can. I don't think Hands Free button is recognized by an Axxess but could be wrong.
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Old 01-29-2012, 10:00 PM
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Guess maybe I'm not understanding exactly what you're trying to do, or what you're really asking. Are you asking which wire in the stock harness is for the Tel Mute? Or what type of signal travels on that wire?

Any any aftermarket radio that has a button you push, and then speak certain commands, should mute the music by itself.
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Old 01-29-2012, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by firebirdude View Post
Guess maybe I'm not understanding exactly what you're trying to do, or what you're really asking. Are you asking which wire in the stock harness is for the Tel Mute? Or what type of signal travels on that wire?

Any any aftermarket radio that has a button you push, and then speak certain commands, should mute the music by itself.
Sorry, it was perfectly clear to me when I posted it. Let's see if this helps you any with my search.

I want to use the factory push to talk button on the steering wheel instead of the aftermarket remote button. I thought that that wire would be the H/F Tel Mute, pin L for the push to talk for a bluetooth connected phone. Am I wrong with this?

If it is that pin, I am after what signal or voltage is at pin L or exactley what it does. If this is not the ptt, is there a pin for that feature that tells the bluetooth to answer the phone?

It appears that my head unit, a Kenwood 9980HD, looks for a ground when you push their external push button. I have yet to verify this myself or with anyone of knowledge but am in the process.
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Old 02-04-2012, 10:51 PM
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Now this is hiw all threads/post should be Excellent job OP!
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Old 02-11-2012, 05:04 PM
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Question

Im new to this thing, how do you post in the archive for everyone to see. i Have a question about my RX8 but dont know where to go to post it?
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Old 02-11-2012, 09:44 PM
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First, you use the search feature to see if your question has been answered previously. If not AND it's not answered in this thread, you click the "new thread" button right above the link for this thread.
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Old 02-18-2012, 01:39 AM
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Originally Posted by bhammer View Post
Sorry, it was perfectly clear to me when I posted it. Let's see if this helps you any with my search.

I want to use the factory push to talk button on the steering wheel instead of the aftermarket remote button. I thought that that wire would be the H/F Tel Mute, pin L for the push to talk for a bluetooth connected phone. Am I wrong with this?

If it is that pin, I am after what signal or voltage is at pin L or exactley what it does. If this is not the ptt, is there a pin for that feature that tells the bluetooth to answer the phone?

It appears that my head unit, a Kenwood 9980HD, looks for a ground when you push their external push button. I have yet to verify this myself or with anyone of knowledge but am in the process.

Okay, I have done some more digging in to this. Our steering wheel controller is a resistive type. The exteranal controllers are looking for a certain resistance. I sent my DMM and oscope out for calibration right after I set my gains. I have to get them calibrated annually. They should be completed early next week. When I get them back, I'll get the specific resistance of each. I am sure there is a way to be able to look at a resistance and with a certain point, set a switch to ground. More digging and then I'll bet Paimon can help explain what I would need to do.

More to come.
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Old 08-05-2012, 11:00 AM
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[*]Both HUs output differential speaker-level signals. Do not hook the HU signal directly to an amp's line-level/high-level inputs. Instead, connect to a line output converter first. Otherwise, frying of HU may occur.


Hi Firebirddude,

Thanks for the great posts. I have a question, you mention above not to hook up the prebose straight to an amp. but in the thread https://www.rx8club.com/do-yourself-...s-19906/page3/ G8rboy runs for 5 years without any LOC and had no issues. Do you really think not usings an LOC is an issue?

Also the ZX kicker line of amps boasts "Differential inputs also make KICKER amps compatible with any factory or aftermarket radio." Do you think you would be able to use these without an LOC.

Thanks.
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Old 08-05-2012, 12:04 PM
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Originally Posted by ChikaFreak View Post
I have a question, you mention above not to hook up the prebose straight to an amp. but in the thread https://www.rx8club.com/do-yourself-...s-19906/page3/ G8rboy runs for 5 years without any LOC and had no issues. Do you really think not usings an LOC is an issue?
Honestly, the top section of my first post was already made in our old FAQ thread which was around before I joined the board. After that poster sold his RX8 and stopped posting here, it became necessity that someone else start a new one which included all the other stuff we now know about the 8. So I copied all his old info, added much more, and posted it up here. Before I joined, apparently a couple people fried their headunits and were accusing the high-level inputs into their aftermarket amps as being the culprit. Was that really the cause? Is there any amount of truth to it? I honestly don't know. I rarely used high level inputs on vehicles while working as a professional installer. But on vehicles that I did, I never heard of anything like that happening.

I would like to point out this post by G8rboy:
Originally Posted by G8rboy View Post
Yes, that's the way you should do it, but I didn't... I just made an RCA-to-line-level cable by cutting a standard RCA cable pair in half and stripping the wires, and used those stripped ends to tap into the pre-amp speaker signals coming from the head unit, and plugged the RCA's on the other end into my amp. It's been working for my Alpine for almost two years now...
So he's actually using the RCA inputs on his amp. Not the speaker-level or high-level inputs. He simply hacked up an RCA cable versus using an adjustable line output converter. (Same thing, but most people like the adjustability of a LOC) That may be the difference. May not be. Like I said, I've never experienced headunits frying in any vehicle due to this.

I have, however, done several installs in 8's. I have tried connecting the LOC before the Bose amp, listened to it for about 30 minutes, then moved the LOC to after the Bose amp. Much louder. I didn't notice any problems with blending/adjustment that G8rboy mentions. Though he's a big proponent of the Audiopilot, which I hate. So maybe that's the difference there.


Originally Posted by ChikaFreak View Post
Also the ZX kicker line of amps boasts "Differential inputs also make KICKER amps compatible with any factory or aftermarket radio." Do you think you would be able to use these without an LOC.
Well Kicker saying that it's "compatible with any factory or aftermarket radio" is really just marketing. I'm sure there's special cases in certain vehicles where it might not (Mercedes with fiberoptics comes to mind). So take what they say with a grain of salt. However, I doubt you'd have a problem in the 8. Worse comes to worse, tap right at the rear speakers. I really think G8rboy is making too much of it...

Last edited by firebirdude; 08-05-2012 at 12:09 PM.
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