View Full Version : Working on a pure SQ install in the BMW

david in germany
01-05-2012, 03:10 PM
So, I have gone through the bass head stage of my life (still appreciate deep clean bass though) and have started an install on my 118i. I have installed a Alpine CDE-126bt (european version with alot more features than the US version.), I have a new Alpine MRX V60 5 channel amplifier waiting to go in to power a set of 4" Mb Quart Components (Old school German models) subs and rear fill. I have already installed a pair of Earthquake 8" SWS shallow subs in the stock locations under the seats (Very capable little subs) and have them powered with a little Arc Audio KS125 at 70w per channel at the moment and they get LOW.
All will be topped off/controlled by a Fosgate 3sixty.2.
The install will be 100% hidden other than the deck.

I will be doing all the tuning with Term-lab as well.. Do I have any intention of competing? Nope, just want audio bliss. :drool:

A bit Overkill?

01-05-2012, 07:03 PM
No, I dont like your choice of amplifiers for what you consider an SQ install, but Im sure it will sound great.

david in germany
01-05-2012, 07:59 PM
haha, I know, I had second thoughts originally about the alpine but in the mid 90's Richard Clark (god of SQ) did a challenge with amps and proved without a doubt that no one can determine one amp from another when properly installed. The Alpine also has a very small footprint that will make the install that much easier. I was debating if I wanted to use my Rockford Fosgate 25 to life Power 1000 (limited edition) to power the system but it is just too much power. Like putting twin Allison Aircraft engines into a moped. ;)

Eric Barrera
01-06-2012, 05:55 AM
A bit?

Haha, looking forward to your build.

01-06-2012, 08:22 AM
Are those the same Earthquake SWS 8" subs which Jax and Shadowlife25 opined as no longer coming from a quality manufacturer?


david in germany
01-06-2012, 12:33 PM
The did mention that the Earthquake gear in general is not where it was before but I can asure you, these were purpose built subs and they are awesome for that purpose. When I first picked them up I thought to myself, dear god, where is the motor on these, why are they so light? They are nothing like my custom 10" with passive radiator on 1000w but they do get low, stay clean and don't need that much power to push them. Most people have issues with the SWS because they try to run them too high but down low is where they need to be (talking about frequency not mounting positions). What I like about the Earthquakes is no one even knows where the bass is coming from in my BMW when they hear them.

01-06-2012, 02:50 PM
So hurry up and finish this already!

david in germany
01-06-2012, 03:33 PM
haha, My Fosgate 3.sixty.2 in in route back from repair. The Bluetooth module died and the guy I bought it from failed to tell me...

david in germany
01-07-2012, 11:42 AM
Ok, I determined that I will be using a set of Priemium 4" components in the front. I also have a pair of 5.25 and a pair of 6.5 Priemium mids to do the kick pannels if I need it later. I am debating if I want to leave the stock 4's in the rear or stick a pair of 4" mb quart reference mids in the back (no highs). I think the mb quarts will be better because the stockers may have a higher sensitivity than them. I will need to rebuild the hatch floor to lift it up about an inch to clear the amp as well. I am going to order a new rear hatch floor and modify the one I have so I can reference it to keep it looking as close to stock as I can.

Oh and my 3sixty.2 should be here in a week or less. :)

david in germany
01-18-2012, 08:14 AM
Gettign closer to having everything to start. I have the 3.sixty back from fosgate but they forgot to put the power plug in the box. Alpine amp is here, front stage is waiting for the mounting adapters to arrive for the mids, My Knu RCA's are now installed.
To do list;
-get power plug for the 3sixty.2
-run speaker wires to the doors for the components
-build up the false floor about an inch
-install the components in the doors
-install the amp and processor under the false floor
-pull out the laptop and tune
-enjoy audio bliss

I may throw in my 10" enclosure just to get a Term-lab reading before I go pure SQ first though.. But I don't want to piss off the neighbors too much LOL

david in germany
01-21-2012, 11:10 AM
I just realized I have another bump in the road... I had to use a canbus adapter to be able to use the parking assist in the car so presently the deck speaker level goes through the canbus adapter to the speakers. If I use RCA outs on the deck it bypasses the canbus, I need to run RCA signal out to the amp the back up to the dash through the canbus and then out to the speakers.. I need creat a new harness to do this... Damn..

david in germany
01-24-2012, 09:18 PM
I test fit the highs and mids today. The mids bolt right in and the tweets will pop into stock locations with no issue but.. The MB Quart crossovers will not fit in he doors.. I have to run fresh wires through the door jams from where I will mount the amp or find a place close to the front of the car.

01-24-2012, 10:58 PM
Running wires through door jams was definitely not one of my favorite things to do :P

01-25-2012, 06:32 AM
Wtf is SQ? Sorry ive only had systems for pure bass competions and loudness.......my old honda hatch was a great comp car.

You look to be using some quality stuff mang, though I'm not a fan of fosgate what so evr. The german stuff migt be different than what we have here.

Good luck

david in germany
01-25-2012, 06:42 AM
SQ = Sound Quality.
German fosgate is the same as US Fosgate.
So far I have learned, BMW's are a pain in the ass to install anything into... They have no constant power or switched power like you would normally need to power up a deck. I had to use a "key in" switched power from the clutch and a constant from the fuse box (located behind the dash and glove box) my Celica took 3 minutes to install a deck into..

01-25-2012, 07:18 AM
Sound quality....lmao I should have figured that out.

david in germany
01-25-2012, 10:37 AM
Thinking about just going with 3 amplified channels (2 for the front and mono for the subs.) If I do this I won't need to raise the floor to fit the amps and I won't have to worry about the park distance adapter as all the sounds go through the rear speakers. I may use the Arc Audio KS125.2 on the Fronts and an Arc Audio clone 500.1 on the subs. Pondering... I won't be able to EQ out the rear speakers though but... They are for fill anyways, The front speakers are where your staging is done.

david in germany
04-12-2012, 08:53 PM
Small update, finally installed a set of MB Quart Premium components in the front running off the deck. I installed the Alpine amp but I have not yet installed the speaker wires to the highs and mids. The front stage is crystal clear but they want the power from the amp. The subs now on rated power surprised the hell out of me!

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david in germany
04-12-2012, 08:54 PM
Forgot to add, I didn't need to raise the floor to install the amp.

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04-13-2012, 11:15 PM
I look forward to seeing the new install David :)
I haven't had the chance to mess about with mine in a looong time. I needs moar sub, as only the midwoofer is no longer satisfying to me.
Also, I cant wait for that model of BMW to get stateside. :D

david in germany
04-30-2012, 07:23 PM
getting closer to being done, all speakers are now amplified! I popped in some santana to get a feel... CLEAN sounding but I still need to make time to get the 3sixty.2 in. :)

david in germany
05-02-2012, 08:41 AM
I think I have reached the thermal limits of my Earthquake subs. I was beating on them with a little bit of chopped and screwed remixes and the car started to smell like burnt coils! LOL I need to get my gains adjusted sooner than later!

david in germany
05-12-2012, 07:09 PM
Reworked the subs with proper wire and set the gains. The subs are feeling better now.

I will need to reset the gains once I stick the 3sixty.2 in. I am now hearing the major difference between iPod audio and cd so much more..

david in germany
05-13-2012, 07:58 PM
Cleaned up the wires tonight and realized that I need to order some other RCAs so they are not too long. This is where I will be placing the 3sixty.2.http://img.tapatalk.com/54ad543e-041c-fdae.jpg
This is how it looks all covered up.

05-14-2012, 06:22 PM
Great job! I had considered a while back getting a 360.2 but never had issue with the signal processing in my Eclipse CD7000 so never explored further. I look forward to your findings on the differences made with the unit. :)

david in germany
05-18-2012, 11:30 AM
I am really not happy with the signal processing of the Alpine amp. The internal crossovers are not as precise as they should be and I am experiencing frequency bleed into the front components that should not be there.. This should not be an issue once my cable order arrives and I can install the 3sixty.2 and set the amp to flat. I will be able to make on the fly adjustments with my palm to get it set properly as well. Also the sub control is not so good either, it is either on or off and not much in the middle.

05-19-2012, 04:20 AM
Wanna play with a real amp DIG? I got an Eclipse 4 channel and a JL 300/4.

david in germany
05-19-2012, 07:54 AM
:finger: I have plenty of amps but it must be small enough to fit under the floor in the rear. Otherwise I would have been running my Fosgate 25 to Life Power 1000.

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david in germany
05-19-2012, 07:55 AM
By the way, I am running 5 channels. :)

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david in germany
05-21-2012, 07:43 PM
ALMOST DONE! I only need to run the sub control wire back to the 3sixty.2 and that is it! Speaking of 3sixty.2.. What an awesome processor! I will NEVER do another system without one again!!!

Sun enclosures that vent into the body cavity with Earthquake SWS 8's installed
About 1" of clearance from the grill
Amp area with sound deadened panel
ZERO loss of storage space!!
And it sounds amazing!!

05-21-2012, 07:46 PM
Im with ya. Except for that damn headunit.

david in germany
05-21-2012, 08:08 PM
Lunipoo, I know your taste. Just so you know, the European Alpines have different specs than the same model US decks. Not to mention 3 band tuners with rds and traffic functions ( I'm on the road over 2 hours a day) other requirements for me were Bluetooth and full iPod control which it does without a hitch. Some of the decks you guys have in the states do not work here because of the tuning otherwise I may have selected something else.

david in germany
05-21-2012, 08:13 PM
Had to correct my first post, the deck is a CDE 126bt not a CDE 125bt (big difference)

david in germany
07-21-2012, 08:49 PM
Just ordered a replacement earthquake sws 8. One of them is fine but one of them had a bad tinsel lead that surfaced after all this time. I was wondering why my bass was lacking on some songs..
I am planning an Aperiotic enclosure for a single 12 in the rear hatch cover to give me a bit more bottom end. I have most of the parts but lack the time at the moment to do it.

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david in germany
09-19-2012, 07:45 PM
Update. Today I swapped out my Alpine MRX V60 amp for two of the new Fosgate boosted rail mini amps, a PBR300x1 and a PBR300x4. Power to the subs is cut to about 50% but so far I do not hear a difference. I also have done a bit of tuning with my 3sixty.2. The subs are crossed over at 150hz and below and the front highs and mids are seeing 125hz and above. I also swapped out my MB Quart tweeters of om SAS silk domes to tone them down a little. Before you ask, my subs are in the front so the will not be pulling the sound stage to the rear. The bass smacks you dead in the face like nothing I have heard before. But I still have to see how they do with the lower power.
More to come, still need to reorganize my cables because it looks like spaghetti since I swapped the amps.

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david in germany
09-22-2012, 03:51 PM
Tiny amps!!!!

09-22-2012, 04:43 PM
Man, those things are tiiiiny.

david in germany
08-12-2013, 02:30 PM
A little update
Pulled the Earthquakes out and put a pair of Original BMW Logic 7 woofers in. Bass in the front seems more blended now. I bandpassed the front woofers so that I can try something I have wanted to try for a couple of years. Infinite Baffle in the hatch with a apriotic membrane.
Her is the results.

With the seat in place, sweep, 20hz-90hz
One side of the split seat down
If I get time I will remove the membrane and do another run on the TL but it may take a few days.
I am only running 1 sensor so the second reading may be from my laptop mic. Overall, I am pleased. a single 12 on about 400w.

08-13-2013, 05:01 AM

That is all. :D

david in germany
10-14-2013, 06:30 PM
Little update.
Alpine deck is out and replaced by a Dynavin.
The 3Sixty.2 has been set off in the garage to collect dust. I am now running a JBL MS-8, I have swapped out my components to BMW Oem L7 (2ohm)components, pulled the Earthquakes and replaced them with BMW L7 woofers. I am running a single 10" on a DD SS1a amp with the rest of the speakers on the MS-8.
Present project: Center channel.
Stock BMW Dash Box
Dynavin Deck JBL MS-8 display

Center channel, Single JBL 2 way 4"
Dash box is a bit ugly but solid
The box is a bit dusty from working on it.
Sound deadening
Grills held in place with high strength magnets
I have the same pressed into the grill under the grill cloth.
Now I need to install it, wire it up and do a couple of new signal sweeps with the MS-8. Next project, fiberglass sub in the side panel of the hatch!!

10-14-2013, 07:04 PM
Nice job on the center channel!
I thought of trying to add one to the Celica a while back but I am loathe to pull that damnable dash out again to do so. Even if I did use a nice OEM part like you have there the vinyl on the dash would peel back over time and just be horrid to look at.

10-15-2013, 06:06 PM
Nice job on the center channel!
I thought of trying to add one to the Celica a while back but I am loathe to pull that damnable dash out again to do so. Even if I did use a nice OEM part like you have there the vinyl on the dash would peel back over time and just be horrid to look at.

It'd be aite in the 7th gen, though. There's even a nice wide open "Sunglasses bin" that could be made to look stock.

david in germany
10-17-2013, 10:02 PM
I stuck the center channel enclosure in tonight... I couldn't find my roll of speaker wire to wire it up though... Arggggghh. Got to pick up some wire tomorrow or run some knu 12g wire I have that is too over kill for what it needs lol.

10-18-2013, 04:30 AM
Look around in boxes and such in your storage man! You'd be surprised at the stuff you have forgotten about from disuse. :)

david in germany
10-18-2013, 07:23 AM
First thing I did daddy'o. Still no dice. I need to pick up some 16g today at lunch.

david in germany
10-18-2013, 07:26 PM
:turboboink: center channel done!:turboboink:
Pics tomorrow when the sun returns. :)

10-19-2013, 03:26 AM
That is great! I wish I could get a listen.
I assumed you had looked already, but by strange coincidence I found half a roll of some (absolute shit) 12ga wire in the garage last week. I figured it wasn't only me. lol
Standing by for pics.

david in germany
10-19-2013, 09:53 AM
Trying to upload with tapatalk. Lets see if it works. I forgot to mention what the cloth tab was for.

Sent from my GT-S7710 using Tapatalk

10-19-2013, 04:06 PM
Looks pretty clean :) And yeah, what's the tab for? Other than opening the grille portion.

david in germany
10-19-2013, 05:19 PM
Just to lift it up. :)

Sent from my GT-S7710 using Tapatalk

10-19-2013, 07:51 PM
lol fair enough. I thought perhaps you had incorporated some kind of wizard shit into that too :D

david in germany
10-19-2013, 09:01 PM
Ta Da! It lifts! LoL

10-20-2013, 04:36 AM
What sorcery is this?!


david in germany
10-25-2013, 09:15 PM
Ok, I am about 90% complete.
I am running all Original BMW L7 highs and mids except for the rear tweeters which are BMW "high Fi" tweeters (soft dome vs the L7 are titanium) and the center channel which is a JBL 2 way 4". The underseat woofers are also L7 8". All are run from the MS-8.

The last 10% I need to complete is the sub stage. I have not decided what I will be using but I have it narrowed down to a self built fiberglass enclosure with a single 10" I have or a pair of 8" I have. For 8" subs I have some old school Earthquake 8" and a pair of Kicker Solo-baric. I am leaning towards the kickers because of the power handling.
I also have a Infinity basslink ii to try for fun.

10-26-2013, 01:35 AM
Those Infinity units always seemed like a great idea. Until you saw how many of them had failures. :( Too bad because it really was a good solution.
If you are considering 8" subs the new alpines seem quite nice in the correct enclosure space.
A 10" driver is always a good performer, so that usually gets my vote. Just depends on space and specs.
You should check out some of Bing's installs over there. He does some great work. May be nice to check out for the purpose of some ideas.

david in germany
10-27-2013, 01:57 PM
I hooked it up. It really does do pretty good for as small as it is. It doesn't get as low as my custom built box but it is a different level anyways.
I will run it for a few days to get a feel of it.

david in germany
10-28-2013, 07:34 PM
Ok, this is embarrassing. I am considering the Infinity Basslink II as my new reference for tight, dynamic bass.. It is not going to win any SPL comps but it does get low and sounds great doing it and to top it off installation takes about 2 minutes including the time to carry it to the car! I need to get this thing on the termlab ASAP. It is not a replacement for a proper custom enclosure but it will give one a run for their money in the same power category. I have done installs of the original Basslink in the past but the improvements over them with the Basslink II make this one a 100% better product.

10-28-2013, 08:24 PM
Interested in the results. :)

david in germany
12-06-2013, 09:02 PM
I have learned a bit more about the MS-8 settings lately. I always assumed the front stage would overlap with the sub frequencies but with the MS-8 that is not the case. I was wanting the underseat 8" to work a bit more but I wasn't allowing the to.
Each frequency you set in the MS-8 goes as a high AND low pass in the setup.
First you set the subsonic filter, then you set the sub frequency (in my case now 20hz subsonic and low pass at 65hz) then you set the front stage (you have already set the highpass frequency With the sub ie 65hz and up in my case.) I run a 2 way front (8" under the seats and 4" components) I then set the xover for the 2 way front (this sets the low pass for the 8" and the highpass for the 4" and tweeters) for mine I changed it up to 115hz, this gives the 8" underseat woofers 65-115hz and the components 115 and up. Moving on to the rear it asks the highpass but no option for low pass as the MS-8 needs the full upper range for the logic 7 I set mine at 115hz, the same as the front components as i am using the same components in the rear but a little bit lower range of tweeter. You then move on to the center channel (again highpass only)I set mine at 100hz to overlap a bit with the 8".
It sounds much meatier in the front than it did choking the 8".

I like it, even with the Infinity sub woofer. :)

12-07-2013, 01:16 AM
Ah so now you have the ever elusive up front bass and a solid image? :)

david in germany
12-07-2013, 07:20 PM
Yup and since they are under the front seats, my upfront bass rattles your loins. :) well as much as 25w or so can. ;)

12-09-2013, 02:39 AM
Mmmmmm... rattling loins. :D lol

Glad to hear you are pleased with the result brother!

david in germany
03-01-2014, 07:35 PM
Today's update, MS-8 powering center channel (now BMW logic 7 components) and rear components. JBL MS-a1004 powering the front Logic 7 speakers in the doors and the underseat 8" woofers. Doors are crossed over at 130hz and up. The underseat woofers are getting 130hz and down to 60hz. 20hz to 60hz is through a JBL MS-a5001 and a custom 10" in a fiberglass enclosure in the rear side panel. I was running a set of Gladen 3 way components in the front but they don't even sound close to the Logic 7 components, out they came and the Logic 7's went back in.

I may drop the frequency of the sub to 50hz as the underseats will take down to 40 or so without issue.
Pics soon. :)

03-01-2014, 10:54 PM
What slopes are you using for the x-overs? Might be part of the issue you were having with the comps.
Looking forward to the next update. :)

david in germany
03-01-2014, 10:58 PM
At the moment most are set at 18db

Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk HD

03-01-2014, 11:22 PM
I usually have good luck with 24db filters, but that is also totally driver dependent. I was just curious. :P

david in germany
03-12-2014, 12:58 PM
Swapped out my Custom Built PSI Sub from the Mini install to a Sundown SD1V2... I gained 6db from the sealed enclosure! I knew the sub prefered ported but I didn't think it disliked sealed so much..

david in germany
07-02-2014, 03:01 PM
I think I have arrived to where I wanted to be!
Frequencies set to 20-55hz to the Sundown sub powered by the JBL MS-5001, All highs and mids powered by the Ms-8 with all 4" and tweeters crossed over at 250hz and above at 24db underseat mids picking up 55hz to 250hz. Front stage is solid and clear. The sub blends with the front stage almost like there is no sub (untill you turn off the sub and then you notice that it is missing). Now when I drive my Focus I am sad... Mario, hook me up brother!

07-04-2014, 10:15 AM
PM sent. :)