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Thread: Plan for an audio system

  1. #1
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    Plan for an audio system

    When I was younger I had an $800 honda with a $1000 sound system in it. But for the Marauder I never wanted to mutilate it so I had a mild upgrade of infinity speakers in all 4 corners (forget if they are kappas or whatever) and a jl 6W3v3-4 in the stock sub box (perfect sealed size volume for it!).
    I've had it that way for more years than I can remember now but the bug has bitten once more thanks to all the advances in tech and years learning more about electronics and whatnot.
    So here is my plan for my second audio system upgrade, let me know what you guys think and if there is a problem in my logic.

    audio2.jpg

    Headunit:
    Made from a 7" touch screen, oem connectors and radio chassis, power control hardware, and a raspberry pi 4 running open auto pro. Will use the hdmi output to run a digital signal to the trunk of the car, avoiding electrical interference.

    Extractor:
    In the trunk, this will take the HDMI audio and convert it to 5.1 RCAs. This part is a home audio part, will need a buck converter for the 5v needed as well as a trigger switch.

    DSP:
    The RCAs will be super short connecting the extractor to minidsp's c-dsp-8x12 (https://www.minidsp.com/products/car...dsp/c-dsp-8x12). This active crossover's output is then 12 channels to the amps. One reason I picked this dsp (and the amp chips) was because of their use of new chips. a lot of class-d amps and dsp use really old tech. The chips can be 15+ years old but if it sells they still make it and never update it.

    Amps:
    The amps should be close to the DSP as well, again keeping the RCAs short. One thing I've learned over time is that commercial amplifiers can be a rip off. A $3,000 amp hailed as sounding great can have $15 digital chip at its heart.
    I was really impressed with texas instruments TPA3251 (https://www.ti.com/product/TPA3251) chip when it came out. It is a class-D that is 90% efficient and not many external components needed, keeping the size small. I made their design for a 700 watt amp (https://www.ti.com/tool/PMP11769)
    but it lacked a remote turn on lead and a few other problems. I couldn't quite figure out how to alter the pcb well enough. I didn't want to fool around with all that again so I found http://www.3e-audio.com/ who make a 4 channel 100x4 tpa3251 based amp. Problem is this is for home use so it needs a
    boost converter and a trigger switch for each one. 3 of these handles the 12 channels. Side note, you know how everyone raves about the ICEpower stuff? those are tpa32XX based as well.

    Speakers:
    what to do with 12 channels? I'm thinking 3 way component speakers up front. 1" tweeter in the sail panel, convert the stock speaker location to a 3.5", and use a custom door pod to add a 6.5" https://www.customspeakerpods.com/19...crown-victoria.
    It will take a lot of work to get everything to look nice. Some people don't use any rear fill but I'd like to build this for rear seat passengers as well so 2 way components in the rear. Not sure where the tweeter will go yet but will convert the stock location to 6.5".
    I'll keep the jl 6W3v3-4 in the stock sub box, it will use 2 of the channels summed (and bridged from the amp) and feed it 150w, all other speakers get 100w.

    So it should , in theory, sound great and be way cheaper....in theory...
    Last edited by the fat bastid; 02-16-2020 at 01:46 PM. Reason: explain yo' self, fool!
    "Come to me, Superman! I defy you! Come and kneel before Zod! Zod! "

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by the fat bastid View Post
    When I was younger I had an $800 honda with a $1000 sound system in it..
    Interesting writeup. My first excursion into HiFi was a Craig 8 track/FM unit mounted in the glove compartment of my 1966 Ford Fairlane with Jensen 6x9 dual cone speakers on the rear package tray. I was in heaven. FM was next to useless due to lack of FM rock stations at the time - they were still on the AM band. Grand Funk Railroad never sounded better! Some time and a few cars later, I moved up to a nearly new 1979 Sedan Deville with the factory AM-FM 8 track (first year of the digital display), along with the optional, dealer installed Cadillac/Delco Symphonic Sound Package. This option included speaker upgrade and an under dash booster-equalizer. AC-DC never sounded better.

    Next experience at HiFi wasn't until 1999 when I bought a nearly new 1998 Mustang GT with the Mach 460 Sound System. Nirvana never sounded better. My first car to have a factory installed CD player - loved this car until I wrapped it around a power pole one early saturday morning in 2011 (fell asleep at 0330). One month later I buy my current Mustang from the original owner, a like new 2005 GT with the Shaker 500 system. Only 6k miles and the price was right. Disappointed that it didn't have a cassette player - found out that 2004 was the last model year a cassette player was available in a Mustang. I'm stepping up in the world audio wise. Stone Temple Pilots never sounded better.

    Fast forward to 2019. I trade my 2006 Ranger Supercab 4X4 for a brand new 2019 Ranger Lariat 4X4 Super Crewcab. The Lariat comes with the Bang & Olufsen 10 Speaker Sound System (B&O Play). 675 watts of total amplifier power. Johnette Napolitano/Concrete Blonde never sounded better.




    Regarding Marauder, I'm content with the stock Alpine manufactured Symphonic Sound System with single CD player, CD changer and a cassette player (top of the line Panther sound system at the time). Lately, I'm listening to a lot of Channel 35 XMU on Sirius XM from my phone through Marauder's radio using a ROAV bluetooth adapter. I've never been a true audiophile of sorts - not hard to please.

    Last edited by Invective; 02-13-2020 at 08:12 PM.
    Current Garage:

    2004 DTR Marauder
    2005 Mustang GT Premium
    2019 Ranger Lariat Super Crewcab 4WD
    2008 Triumph Sprint ST
    2015 Triumph Trophy SE



    “Be the change that you wish to see in the world.”
    Mahatma Gandhi

  3. #3
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    I love your plan!

    I have had many a sound system with extensive mods in several of my vehicles (I'll edit this post with more details later today). I would say that the active crossover/eq setup is the way to go for today's automobiles. It is astounding the audio perfection that can be achieved with time alignment and proper equalization with such a setup. People that would hear these modern tuned vehicles are usually blown away at how fewer watts/speakers can turn into audio that destroys ALL (and I mean ALL) factory setups. In 30 years of sound system playing and hobby, I have never heard a factory sound system outperform a properly tuned aftermarket system.

    You've got a good setup...Although I would learn heavier toward the bass side of the equation. If your system were my system, I would at least put two ten inch subwoofers in the package tray where the spare tire sits. Two tens with about 250-500 watts apiece would be amazing. My former Marauder (God rest her poor totaled soul) had Focal 5-1/4" components up front and Focal 5x7 coaxials in the rear with two JL audio 10w7 subs in the trunk. I ran a JL Audio 450/4 for the front (150 watts x 2) and rear (75 watts x 2) and a 1000/1 for the two subwoofers (500 watts each). It was amazing!

    You may need an upgraded alternator, since our vehicles are a bit anemic when it comes to adequate amperage from the power plant.

    I'm sure Kenny (BAD MERC) will chime in here, he built an amazing system in his silver beast that put all (in my opinion) to shame. Of course, we are sound quality fans...the boom system crowd has another manner of producing what their ears like to hear. Enjoy the ride!
    2003 300A
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    Eaton Swapped by Curless
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  4. #4
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    With your proposed set up how do you plan on dealing with the inverse Marx-Klaxon wave feedback oscillation? You will need to incorporate some sort of a philharmonic sine cornish eliminator.

  5. #5
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    Well planned TFB.

  6. #6
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    I think youd be much better off with a nice 6.5" component set in the doors and dedicated 8" mids mounted up front. Tweets in the sails is a horrible idea IME Ive never once heard it sound right at all and pulls the imaging too far from center. I never understood why some some vehicles come like that stock.

    two sealed 10s on the back deck and leave the kappas or what you have for the rear fill.

    I have some JBL 6.5 components up front and just though alone with a boom mat was a significant improvement over the stock setup with the puny 6.5" sub.
    '03 Marauder 300A - 87 Octane Race Tune
    O&E Speed Shop - 2333 Aberdeen St. Kenner, LA
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  7. #7
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    How do you plan on dealing with Sideway, Radiated, Engine and Alternator Noises?
    1/4 Mile Time 11.542 @ 121.19 MPH
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  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by sailsmen View Post
    How do you plan on dealing with Sideway, Radiated, Engine and Alternator Noises?
    Alternator noise is either picked up in the RCAs out of the head unit or a bad ground. I'll run the HDMI cable on the opposite side of the car from the power cable, (like done normally with RCAs) and since it is a digital signal any induced voltage shouldn't cause any 0s to turn into 1s in the mind of the extractor. Induced voltage should be in the mV, not enough to trigger a high bit.
    As for a ground, hum, we will see. Our cars don't have great grounds. That is why so many of them get the flickering gauges thing going on. I'll scrap the paint and try for the best on the stock locations first and start drilling if that doesn't work.
    "Come to me, Superman! I defy you! Come and kneel before Zod! Zod! "

  9. #9
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    I like those door pods. I wish I had seen them when I was doing my system. I did all JL Audio C-3 components (doors/deck) but would loved to have gone with a 3 way in front, and I really like a strong front stage. In fact, I'd rather have a better front, and no rear at all, than a middle of the pack all round. The one thing I wish for was better imaging from the tweeters. Not a fan of the mid door placement. I'd like a dash placement, way up front by the glass. I did consider the sail panels, but decided against it. I do think you may need a bit more bottom end though. I went with the JL Audio 12W3v3-2 in a down firing sealed box. It's small enough to be placed right under the package tray where the original sub used to hang. I welded bolts to the floor, then bolted it down, so do drilling into the fuel tank, and I still have the entire trunk. It hits hard enough to sound real good, but it's not mushy and boomy like a ported box. It's tight, and accurate.

    Take factory sub out...



    Weld bolts to floor. No drilling into fuel tank.



    Sealed, down firing enclosure.



    New sub, and brackets.





    Bolt it down. It's not going anywhere...



    Good strong bottom end, and I still have entire trunk, that I use... a lot... (she's a daily)



    I can't remember what vehicle that box was made for. I got it from a stereo shop that was going out of business, (they couldn't even remember) but you can always custom make an enclosure. Thing is, you can fit a 12" sub in the same space as the factory sub... just not with a big ass stupid ported box.
    2003 Marauder... the gentleman's hot rod.

    You know what I like best about most people? Their dogs.


  10. #10
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    Looks like you did your homework . Don't forget the sound deadener.
    2004 marauder black purchased new. Sold 9/16 at 297,000 miles. Still ran strong didn't burn a drop of oil.
    2003 marauder black 28,000 miles all stock. Garage Queen.
    2004 marauder red daily driver.

  11. #11
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    BIG PICTURE WARNING!

    So here is the initial fitment of one of the amps and its parts.

    The TPA3251 4x100 amp on the black pcb. The boost converter is the red pcb. The trigger switch is the small blue one.
    The amp inputs are connected to the rca jacks. The boost converter output is connected to the amp. Nothing else is hooked up yet.
    The yellow wires are not hooked up to anything, they are the negatives for balanced differential inputs. I used the ultimate box maker off of thingyverse as a base for the case. I had to modify the .scad file to add more mount points as the file is really just for a single pcb.
    Each case half takes about 10 hours to print and this is like the 4th version I've had to test haha
    Case size is ~224 mm X 125 mm X 50 mm


    These white plates are monoprice home audio electrical outlets. Kind of a strange choice for car audio speaker termination but I wasn't really happy with other choices such as barrier strips and phoenix plugs. These allow for banana plugs or bare wire connection


    On the input side I used nvx xqdc4 power plug for the positive, negative, and remote turn on lead. I was just looking for mountable screw downs but for some reason the only replacements i could find where those 45 degree ones that pivot the wire up, that is the style these days on car amps. I hate those. This is probably the
    janky-est part as it is just hot glued into the case. The hole you see is for fuse holder that should be coming soon. They are stuck in quarantine. Not a joke.


    Stuff not needed:
    High level inputs. Since I know I'll be using low levels there is no need to include them.
    Frequency cutoffs. All that will be handled by the active dsp.
    Gain control. Set at 20db by design.
    Last edited by the fat bastid; 03-14-2020 at 03:36 PM.
    "Come to me, Superman! I defy you! Come and kneel before Zod! Zod! "

  12. #12
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    I've designed and 3d printed some tweeter cups for the sail panels.
    The ID is 48mm, OD 54mm. 19mm depth before the 'turn'
    I need to aim them, glue them down, then use a grill cloth, resin, and body filler to smooth it all together.
    IMG_20200329_131045490.jpg
    "Come to me, Superman! I defy you! Come and kneel before Zod! Zod! "

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by the fat bastid View Post
    I've designed and 3d printed some tweeter cups for the sail panels.
    The ID is 48mm, OD 54mm. 19mm depth before the 'turn'
    I need to aim them, glue them down, then use a grill cloth, resin, and body filler to smooth it all together.
    IMG_20200329_131045490.jpg

    What!?? You ALSO 3D print? Wow! Man! I am watching this build! I am also considering a 3-way component set. I'm considering a version of what you're considering. any more updates? Pics?
    2003 300A
    Widened Rear Wheels with 295 45 Nitto G2's
    Eaton Swapped by Curless
    Brake Upgrade
    Mo's Tune
    JLT Intake
    Addco Sway Bars
    Metco Control Arms
    4.10 Gears
    Aeroforce Gauges

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