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

Old 08-23-2012, 10:54 AM
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Thanks firebirddude,

I have been reading your posts around the forum and you are a really smart guy and this forum really is A+ because of guys like you .

I dont know a ton about car audio but i love to DIY and I love to learn new skills. One thing i do know about sigals and audio is that the more processing etc. that you do the more likely you are to get quality issues. So by cutting out using a LOC i am just trying to cut out "over processing" and buying something i dont need.

For now I am just looking to add a 10 or 12 to the bose system (who knows what the future will hold) Do you have any amp speaker combos that you would recommend given your professional car audio status?

I read somewhere about your idea to buy a box off ebay and properly tune and port it. Did you ever do that? Sounds like an interesting project to me.

Thanks much!
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Old 08-23-2012, 11:32 AM
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Preciate the kind words. I do what I can with what I know. I'm no guru, but have done my time installing car audio professionally. And I always keep up on the latest and greatest stuff out there. Just a hobby.

I actually did make the ported box. I bought the Zen Enclosures box with one 12" hole on the left side. Then I bought a huge 4 1/2" hole saw, cut a hole in the right side and installed some 4" PVC. I painted the inside black to smooth out the look a little (sorry no pics). Worked pretty well, but the expense added up. The hole saw was like $25 and 4" PVC isn't cheap either. All in all, I probably wouldn't recommend it. There's just other easier/cleaner options. I used it for a little over a year, then bought the two 4080 boxes. Much cleaner look. More storage space. There's actually an eBay seller selling ported RX8 boxes now. I have no clue how they perform. Some crude calculations shows a reasonable tuning frequency(~28Hz), but I'd be worried about port noise with those tiny ports.

My recommendations are going to depend on your budget and personal preferences. If you just want to increase the amount of low-end from the Bose system quickly and cheaply, I'd probably recommend an amplified sub system, such as the Bazooka tube. They're cheap, clean, easy to install, easy to temporary remove for the track and add plenty of bump. For 200 bucks, it's a solid offering. If you're a bit of a basshead and want more than that, a pair of 12"s it is. Which subs should you buy? Which amp should you buy? All depends on your budget. The bare minimum you should be looking to spend on a setup like this is roughly $400 + labor. A solid mid-range setup would be more in the $600 range. Of course, the sky is the limit, so think about where you want to head long-term.
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Old 09-06-2012, 08:43 AM
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Mazda RX-8 DVD Player, Mazda RX-8 Navigation System, Mazda RX-8 GPS DVD, good choice for your car

I was wondering if anyone here has had some experience with this one? does this need the axxess box that a Metra Kit comes with? this seems to good to be true, any help would be appreciated
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:17 AM
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Thanks for all the info firebirdude, you've saved me hours of searching around with the information you've provided!

I was wondering however, what sort of options I had if I wanted to upgrade the Bose system on a Series II, while still keeping the head unit? My rear amp recently stopped working and it's been tough finding a replacement, but I'm unsure if I should actually replace that one part, or the entire system itself. Although if possible, I'd like to keep the headunit.
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Old 02-15-2013, 11:18 AM
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Thanks firebirddude,

When using second skin on say a door, is it better to use a door kit (single sheet) or to use multiple smaller sheets in a bulk pack? I assume that ease of install would be the smaller sheets, but is there a noticeable difference in sound quality?

Also NVX vs. Dynamat vs. GTMAT vs. FatMat; is one better?
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Old 02-15-2013, 11:39 AM
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Get small packages and use sparingly. The recommendation from the pros, and I'm not talking about the BestBuy guys, is cover 25% with a skin to stop resonance. More is not better. Take a look at Your Source for Sound Deadening Products and Information and do some reading. You can also head off to DIYMobileAudio and read. I have a complete build thread and I cover skins and sound deadening as well. It's here on RX8 as well as at Hammer's 2009 Mazda RX-8 Build - DIYMA Car Audio Forum

I'll have to go back and look at the final results but I was able to reduce cabin noise 7dB. If you are looking for road noise reduction, you are looking for CCF and MLC

Last edited by bhammer; 02-15-2013 at 11:42 AM.
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Old 02-15-2013, 12:37 PM
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Though I think the whole 25% rule is a little extreme, I understand the theory behind it. I don't think I'd use the term "more is not better", but rather beyond that is simply a diminishing return. Valid points are raised in regards to adding a ton of unnecessary weight or making specific areas of the vehicle hard to access. I just don't want to promote the thoughts that too much MLC is exactly counterproductive.

I'll post more later. Gotta run.
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Old 03-03-2013, 09:12 AM
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MO Factory Navigation install

Hey guys,

Anyone have a wire diagram for an 04 8? The navigation system isn't working adn I think it has something to do with the other owner. The previous owner put in a cable for an iPod/phone/Pad/etc. with an on off switch. I don't have an i products anymore and want to see if I can get the Nav working again. Any ideas how to test it or see if it just might be some re-wiring? I am a novice when it comes to audio installing, but can figure things out pretty quick. Thanks for any guidance!!
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:36 PM
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hoping someone has come across this issue before.
I have a issue with my stereo install as to subwoofers barely pumping or moving.
I know everythings hooked up fine so for me id think everyone that has done an install usually runs into this issue but didnt care to share. (Or i couldnt find searching)

Ive noticed from transfering my system from my old car to this car there seems to be an issue with how much sound is being delivered to the sub-woofer.
Ive tried different RCA's & their connected to the SW port and the settings are correct within the deck (from what i know)

Ive double checked everything & i keep coming back to how somehow the stock stereo with bose amps is too powerfull I think.

My system pumped hard in my old car & now in this car it will barely pump at high volume & gains way up.
i have an Alpine IDA-X305 ( http://support.alpine-usa.com/produc...DA-X305_EN.pdf )

Im not sure what im doing wrong but i know for sure everythings hooked up correct.
One thing ive noticed is soon as I turn the volume **** theres decent high level sound coming from the bose speakers. In my older car the volume had to be a 1/4 up for the volume level to match what the RX8's seeing.

any suggestions are much appreciated.
Thanks

Edit: I connected another car up to mine.
Ran just speaker wires off the amp = Working fine.
Ran just RCA cables from the other cars deck = Working fine.

Has to be my Deck. OR something to do with the Bose stereo

Last edited by Carbon Fibr; 03-29-2013 at 06:18 PM.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:27 PM
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In the future, make a new topic. Rather than posting in our FAQ thread...

Sounds like you're well on your way troubleshooting. You've narrowed it to the headunit. Ensure the RCAs are connected to the SW RCA output (the bottom pair on your specific headunit, if I remember right). Make sure the RCA output is set properly on the headunit (turned on, crossover, etc). That's all there is to it man. The Bose system has absolutely zero to do with your sub amp. You have an aftermarket headunit supplying an aftermarket signal to an aftermarket amp which pushes an aftermarket subwoofer. The Bose system is out of the equation for the subwoofer.
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Old 03-30-2013, 01:27 AM
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thanks for the info, going to have to look into that damn deck some more.
i appreciate people that have knowledge & help others.

& sorry for the post in here. Usually people get **** on by the lifers on the forum so i was scared to make another topic.
rx8 owners must become moody down the road.
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Old 04-02-2013, 07:45 PM
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My 8 has the stock Bose System, and I was looking to upgrade. I received a quote from a professional car audio specialist that told me a good option to improve the quality of my sound was to replace the front 9" speakers in the doors. However, you said that this cannot be done. Is this so called "specialist" not as professional as I thought, or is there a way to actually replace the front 9" speakers?
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:20 PM
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If you'll read, you'll note that the factory 9" speakers are 0.5ohm. The vast majority of aftermarket speakers are 4 ohm, some being 2 ohm. Regardless, the increase in impedance to the factory Bose amp means about 1/4 the power output, best case. Though maybe he's thinking he can install a pair of 8" woofers in there that have dual 2 ohm coils (few and far between, but just what if). Well that's still a 1 ohm final load and then you're going to run into SERIOUS depth issues. Your "specialist" evidently doesn't specialize in the RX8.

If you're looking for a basic upgrade without ripping out the entire Bose system, either replace only the factory headunit or search Jedi's stereo upgrade (Replacing rear 6x9's, front tweeters, and adding a real subwoofer).
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Old 04-03-2013, 10:38 AM
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Thanks a lot! I was about ready to take my "specialists" advice, but thanks to you I just saved myself $700+!
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Old 04-03-2013, 10:41 AM
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I live in Central Florida. If you, or anyone else reading this, wants face-to-face help, PM me. I'll also put this up in the first post.
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:26 AM
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Sorry to bring up an old thread but I'm really struggling here after countless nights of searching and reading.

I have no headunit at all but want to power my factory amp ONLY when the key is turned to accessories.

If I was to connect for example an iPod directly via Line out to RCA in to the speaker wires that were originally going in to the back of the headunit via harness. Would that signal be enough to power the amp?

My setup will be...

Bluetooth Receiver (Constantly on and power via cigarette lighter when ignition is on.) --> RCA/Phono Connections to Speaker harness that used to connect to the old headunit --> factory bose amp --> factory bose speakers.
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Old 05-09-2013, 08:44 AM
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Theoretically it can be done, sound quality will be sub-par. Also RCA's are not needed.

Still waiting for someone to show me where everyone is thinking the Bose amp receives its signal from RCA's

Bose amp uses high output inputs (aka a direct connection to a single output from the head unit via the speaker wires in the radio wiring harness) RCA's are low level outputs, they are common in the aftermarket but unless you get a top dollar (audiophile quality) receiver RCA's just can't swing the appropriate rail amplitudes on the OP AMP. Thusly increasing interference and signal distortion

Theoretically you will need to power the remote wire located in the factory wiring harness. From there you will need to take the 3.5mm headphone jack and splice the stereo signal into the speaker wires you want to power. The more wires you connect the lower output you will receive out of the speakers. I doubt it will be very loud, and it might not work at all. As the typical output for an IPod/IPhone is in mA. You may need a signal amplifier in between the two components.

It can be done but you will need to research the appropriate components needed. It will be much easier and better quality if you just purchase a receiver.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:11 AM
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Thanks for the quick response!

I'm wondering if I've worded it wrong or used the correct terms. Here is what I have and was planning to connect to the corresponding Left Rear, Left Front, Right Rear, Right Front wires which used to plug in to the original headunit.



Am I correct in saying that all I'd need to do is connect the remote wire that used to go in to the back of the headunit in to a 12v source that only comes on when the key is at accessories?

If this was the case, and the ipod was left in the car playing music but the ignition was turned off. Would this be a drain on the car battery and cause the amp to stay on even with the ignition completely off?

Cheers,
Danny
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:17 AM
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Yes, the remote turns on the amp. Thusly if the remote is not turned on the amp will not be drawing power. Meaning you can supply any signal you want to the amp without any inverse effects on your battery.

You will need a signal amplifier as your device will not be able to provide a strong enough signal to the amp. You will need a small power amplifier. I have no idea what would fit your application, as I have not researched it.
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:41 AM
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Any idea on how high of a signal I need? If I send too high of a signal will I fry the factory amp?
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Old 05-09-2013, 09:42 AM
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Like I said you will need to do a lot of research, and if you don't have a good understanding of electrical and audio principals then this is discouraged.
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Old 05-16-2013, 03:33 PM
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MD

Originally Posted by bhammer View Post
Get small packages and use sparingly. The recommendation from the pros, and I'm not talking about the BestBuy guys, is cover 25% with a skin to stop resonance. More is not better. Take a look at Your Source for Sound Deadening Products and Information and do some reading. You can also head off to DIYMobileAudio and read. I have a complete build thread and I cover skins and sound deadening as well. It's here on RX8 as well as at Hammer's 2009 Mazda RX-8 Build - DIYMA Car Audio Forum

I'll have to go back and look at the final results but I was able to reduce cabin noise 7dB. If you are looking for road noise reduction, you are looking for CCF and MLC
That is awesome to see SDS is getting noticed on here. I did the full SDS system in my protege5, and the benefits are too many too list. So worth it and Don @ SDS is simply the most knowledgeable person in the industry on dampening for car audio.

Here is the link to my Protege5 build log with SDS: SDS install log on the SSA Mazda - Build Logs - SSA Car Audio Forum
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:07 AM
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Originally Posted by Astral View Post
How to tap into accessory plug[/url]. (The Bose amp has no remote turn-on available, only constant battery voltage.)
If as you say above, the Bose amp just has a constant 12V and no remote turn-on then what is stopping this from being a battery drain?

I have removed my headunit completely and now my amp doesn't turn on. It still shows the 12V constant from the battery but it isn't turning on with ACC. Is this because it only turns on when it receives a speaker level signal?
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:18 AM
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Who are you quoting?

Thats not even from this thread.

YES! the Bose amp has a remote, anyone who tells you differently needs to seriously consider removing themselves from this forum
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Old 05-17-2013, 07:42 AM
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Sorry, I have about twenty thousand threads open about this as I'm stuck trying to power this Bose amp without a head unit. I had the original thread open (of which the quote is from) too from before it got swapped over to this sticky. Sorry about that.

Does anybody know which wire going in to the Bose amp is the 12v remote wire? I've obviously located the constant 12V White/Red wire. Without a head unit it's difficult to locate the remote wire as the remote signal goes through the head unit (which I don't have.)
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