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Discussion Starter #1
Well, here's a little upgrade on my install for those kind enough too care :).

As expected when you get to the final stages there were some glitches. First off, mainstreetaudio did not yet deliver the subs. On the invoice I found a cursory not saying "to follow". Great! They could have told me that before. Even more upsetting was that the front system that was supposed to come with an extra set of tweeters to be mounted in the A pillar had them missing from the very fancy box. They ship these $900 speakers in little aluminum hard cases with foam inserts and all the gadgetry to mount them and then they forget to put the tweeters in the box, come on!

So anyway we got the basic system running last night and I drove home with really nice sound. However, since today the amp triggers its protection circuit after 30-120 seconds. Very annoying and I wonder what the reason is. I listened yesterday night while parked and it played fine. Today when I wanted to show off the system to my very critical GF it shut off after two minutes and repeated this behavior throughout the evening. I don't think it's a short circuit due to cut cables or something. The speaker load should be fine, too. Well, tomorrow I will disconnect one speaker after the other and try it out. On sunday Steve and I will do more troubleshooting. Well, at least the protection circuit works... .

The Gold 07 series midwoofers fit into the standard bracket if one cuts out all the inner stuff (rain gutter) and leaves just the ring. Then you need to use long screws to go into the side of the enclosure. Not pretty but works well. Clearance to the window is ok and sidepanel clearance just needed a little bit of cutting on the inside of the panel (invisible outside). They give decent bass which made the absence of subs temporarily bearable. Front staging in terms of stage height is not as good as stock without the upstage tweeters. That was to be expected, of course.

The CL6X fit nicely into the parcel shelf brackets. I could use two of the four mounting holes from the original speaker and drilled two new ones into the bracket. Holds nice and tight. They work very well as rearfill. I do like rearfill a lot so I set the Fader (for now but we are still tweaking) to only F2.

The Alpine D100 HU is really sweet. VERY understated look; even with the button panel mounted it almost looks stealth.The display does not hit or touch the AC buttons when it is open. There is a neat function where you press the OPEN button for the display while it is already open. The display will then fold down (but not slide in), you can adjust the controls for AC and after ten seconds the display flips up again. Smooth. This will not interrupt the music playing. By accident we programmed this function on the steering wheel mute button but I like it there and will probably leave it as is. The big volume knob on the HU doubles as MUTE, so that's easy enough to reach. Image is very good and horizontal viewing angle works for both driver and passenger without a problem. Radio reception and sound are very good.

There are some points of critique also. There seems to be some interference or noise from the hard disk when using the ipod connection. I still have to figure that out. The ipod is in the glove box and between the glove box and the HU is the DC-DC switch power supply. That might be it. This was very apparent yesterday night but not today. Still the ipod sounds rather terrible compared to CD. The difference is MUCH bigger than on my home stereo which is certainly more resolving and has a quieter background. So I guess something is wrong there. If we cannot take care of it I will ask Crutchfield for another cable, perhaps it's the connection.

I am also not sure whether the D100 can use the equalizer functions of i-personalize. It can use the background image functions but I am not sure about the sound (time correction would be intereting).

I might be finnicky here but I would like to see a volume control of 50 settings and just 35 even though in the real world it seems good enough. I have also not yet found a function which controls the volume in reaction to ambient noise level. Still got to study the manual.

I sure am glad to have someone to keep his calm and sort through the install glitches. If you guys got any ideas for amp trouble shooting, let me know.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Couple of updates. The short triggering the amp's protection circuit was one of the speaker terminals that rubbed on the car metal and thus got grounded. It's fixed and amp and speaker play flawlessly now. Yeah!

The 7" mid-woofers make quite a nice bass. Perhaps not as deep as the stock subs in the parcel shelf but definitely cleaner. The subs are still to be delivered and the upstage tweeters should be here on Thursday ... I hope.

For whatever reason, the crackling sound from the ipod has vanished and the sound is now quite good. Treble has a slightly higher pitch than from CD but I should be able to find an EQ setting on the Ipod that fits. The ergonomics are great. The interface is practically as fast as the one on the Ipod with the same menu structure.

The sound right now is still a bit tingy for my spoiled ears but the system is not yet broken in and the balance is still off because there are no subs and no upstage tweeters installed. Otherwise it sounds very high fidelity but not yet high-end if you know what I mean. This will hopefully change as the installed components are definitely on the high-end side.

The screen covering the AC controls is not a problem in my daily use. I can adjust the 1,2,3,4 vent knob just fine with it up. I usually leave the rest alone anyway. The emergency flashers can also be triggered without a problem when the screen is up.

I like the extra storage space that I got by using the single DIN unit (Scosche by the way for the kit) and might install a little clock in there.

What I like most is the stealth look. I noticed that there isn't even any writing anywhere on the radio (when screen is closed) that says Alpine. Since my car is parked outside this is important to me.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Maybe I should rename this thread into Till's Install Diary (or is that diarrhea?).

Today we installed the upstage tweeters in the A-pillars. I would not have thought but it makes a tremendous difference. Now the system is approaching what I would call high-end (still no bass though cause the subs aren't here yet, darn it). The crossover (CDT ES-200US) is fairly complex, offering a lot of different settings to blend the component system in the doors and the upstage tweeters. The soundstage at the driver's seat is great now. At the passenger position it is still very good.

The tingy, metallic sound is almost gone. That is strange to me because there are now more of the same tweeters installed and they are all brand new (the ones in the doors maybe have three hours on them; the pillar tweeters 30 minutes). I figure it must have something to do with the crossover. He installed the tweeters into the pillars without the mounting hardware that came with it in order to gain depth for proper positioning and to stay stealth. Stealth it is indeed, the tweeter is firing right through the cloth of the A-pillar and only a very slight bulge is visible. If you don't know it, you don't see it.

I still find the treble a bit aggressive. As bloody expensive as the HU was the EQ on it is pretty pathetic. Especially one cannot download the EQ and time correction with i-personalize. This is possible with the D310 but that one doesn't have the full speed Ipod interface and is the older unit. It's also another $200 more. So I will live with it for a while and if it still bugs me I will get the P701 sound processor. That should take care of it.

I'll post some pics tomorrow when I get my camera back from a friend.

Till
 

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tfar said:
I'll post some pics tomorrow when I get my camera back from a friend.


When are the subs coming?
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I love that smiley! Where do you guys always get those crazy smilies from? Padre has some great ones, too. I once tried out a smiley program but it scewed other stuff on my computer so I took it off again.

The stupid subs have no scheduled delivery date yet. Guy at mainstreetaudio was really friendly and got on the missing tweeters right away and CDT sent them out right away. But not the subs... I have the feeling they didn't have them in stock anyway (although it said in stock on the site) and now they cannot get them because it appears they are out of production.

I'l call them again tomorrow to be getting on their nerves. I wanted this to be ready so badly for the Oasis meet on Saturday but it just won't happen.

Thanks for allowing me to vent through my install diary. Good thing, Fellippe didn't do one; his took a month or more IIRC.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #7 (Edited)
Here are some pics for ya.

I already forgot again how to post pics that show up right away. I will check that out. I think it should be in the How to post pictures thread from not too long ago.

Till









 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
Some more for good measure of the speakers.







The red speakers are the ones in the back. The orange speakers are obviously in the doors.

Sorry for the big and very grainy pics. I tried to make them smaller in file size without making them smaller in pixel size too much and this is what happened to them.
 

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That cap is very blue.
Can you get your trunk floor piece out with it right there?


Anyway it looks good. I like the tweeter in the A pillar. Looking forward to hearing it someday.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the feedback. Yup, the cap is BLUE. I was lucky that it matched the lights on the amp exactly. To be honest I didn't even know the cap would light up like that when I bought it. It's a little bit of bling in an otherwise understated system; that's ok in my book.

The floor piece pops out without any trouble. You can even get the spare out but you must put a little piece of cloth or so over the amp. There is only 1/8" space to get it out. Mounting the amp higher was not possible.

I am proud of the A-pillar, too. It's the detail I like best.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Tonight we put in two CDT Audio EF-100 10" woofers. They are SVC 4ohm. We tried to hook them up as stereo woofers with very unsatisfactory results. Bridged amp and run woofers parallel as 2ohm load was MUCH better. The woofers are not bad but need some serious break-in. They are not very efficient and draw a ton of power. I might hook them up on a separate amp one day. The good side is that CDT has a sale on them right now. So I got $180 woofers for 50% off. Built quality is very good, just the push wire terminals are smallish.

It took us more than one hour to get them to play decently. I will say decently because I think there is still more that can be done. But first we want to insulate the sidepanel a bit more with the pink fiberglass wool and then mount the interior panels back on. Good thing the amp has a phase dial. The bass is now very nicely located in the front soundstage. We crossed over at 70 for now but maybe we can go a bit deeper still. Bass sounds natural and not bloated. I hoped it might be a bit dryer/punchier and reach deeper. Probably the box is the limiting factor here and possibly an amp with even more juice and higer damping factor would help, too.

I've got a good 17 years of high-end stereo experience but must admit that it is far more difficult to make a car sound good than a home stereo. My hat is off to all those who do that professionally and do it well.

One good thing is that the metallic treble (all tweeters used are silk dome) is much better now. With the help of the PM EQ built into the amp I will probably be able to tame it to my liking.

More (and pics) tomorrow.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
Here are some more pics of the sub install and the installation of the IR diode of the PAC switch. Very neat.

Till







The last pic is the PAC SWI-X universal IR remote. It is ok but it works intermittently only. I believe it is a contact problem. All controls work in humid weather and only the forward and backward song jump work in dry weather.
 

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Till,

Steve called me last night to see when I was coming to visit. He had nothing but nice things to say about you and how much he enjoyed working on your car. Hope you like how everything turned out.

Shane
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Shane,

thanks so much for the great recommendation. As I said in the Texas forum I owe you at least a drink. And you know who to go to if you ever need an install in your GTO. Steve's a great guy and I can only recommend him for his work as well as for his agreeable personality.

Check out the finally installed thread here, if you haven't yet:

http://www.ls1gto.com/forums/showthread.php?t=105186

Chief D asked if I got any rattles or if the sub is touching the interior sidepanels. I was afraid that would happen but luckily it didn't.

I really like the very sleek tweeter location in the A-pillar and the just as sleek IR emitter location in the arm rest.

The fact that there is not much to see and show off probably accounts for the relatively small number of responses the thread(s) had. And perhaps the fact that the stuff used was a bit exotic, so not many people are interested in it...shrug. That's the problem with understatement; it makes it harder for people to appreciate his great job.

Till
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Lothar34 said:
y dint u get JL 13w7 4 the sidez? they roxorz
Nice one! Would have loved to, but money and space are too tight to mention, to use an old Simply Red title with great bass.

Even if you do fiberglass 7 inch mounting depth is all that goes in the side panel.

As I said, should I feel the need for bigger bass I can still get something more high-end and have an FG box but, frankly, the way it sounds now is already quite nice to say the least. No rattles whatsoever, no brakelight, no license plate, no side or door panel rattling. Just natural bass that seems to come from the front despite being almost two feet behind the listener.

Till
 
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