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This was a great video series! I have an ST3, and I agree that the stereo needs help. I've already ordered the speakers he recommended.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
You Sir are too Fucking Funny....... Love it
How about a little info or video at getting door panels off without damage...... Thank you
Alrighty then you ask you shall receive. as soon as I get back from work tomorrow I will do a whole video on how to remove the doors.
 

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Thanks will be looking forward to it.....
 

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Stereo speaker swap

thanks for the good feedback. I try to be straight forward when it comes to what I and people like me spend our money on.
thanks for the good feedback. I try to be straight forward when it comes to what I and people like me spend our money on.
Well, I have to say you were spot on with your videos, Jason! Long story short, I never cared for the shrillness and harshness of the original stereo. It just got annoying at anything resembling a loud volume. I disconnected the center dash speaker, but that only helped a little. Finally, I swapped out the stock speakers for the same Infinities you recommended, and they did the trick.

Sure you can get higher end speakers, and if I were going to do it again, I just might. But these are really just fine, didn't cost a ton of cash, and turned an annoying stereo into a good stereo (good, as in good enough, but not great--this is still not an audiophile system). At 93 dbl efficiency, these new speakers make the most of the stock amp. And you're right--the speakers were the bottleneck, as you put it.

Now the bottleneck is the amp. As soon as I find a better amp that can make use of the stock wiring and installation location, I'll replace that also. The head unit will stay the same, for good or bad, because everything on this car seems to be integrated thru it, and I don't want to mess with the functions. The electronics in this car are quirky enough!

One thing about the replacement speakers--you don't have to butcher the original speakers to get the mounting rings. Crutchfield has adapters that fit the car, and they work just fine. They do leave a gap around part of the ring, but I caulked that closed with silicone caulk. Easy fix.

One word of caution for anyone doing this job--check that each speaker works as you install it. I had a blown tweeter right out of the box, and if I had waited to test it after the install was complete it would have really sucked. This is not an easy car to replace speakers on--very time consuming with many steps. Also, take care with your + and - connectors. Lots of different colored wires to work with. Just pay attention and take notes and you'll be fine.

Nice job Jason--those vids really helped, especially the part with the strange crossover arrangement. That would have taken some time to figure out!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Well, I have to say you were spot on with your videos, Jason! Long story short, I never cared for the shrillness and harshness of the original stereo. It just got annoying at anything resembling a loud volume. I disconnected the center dash speaker, but that only helped a little. Finally, I swapped out the stock speakers for the same Infinities you recommended, and they did the trick.

Sure you can get higher end speakers, and if I were going to do it again, I just might. But these are really just fine, didn't cost a ton of cash, and turned an annoying stereo into a good stereo (good, as in good enough, but not great--this is still not an audiophile system). At 93 dbl efficiency, these new speakers make the most of the stock amp. And you're right--the speakers were the bottleneck, as you put it.

Now the bottleneck is the amp. As soon as I find a better amp that can make use of the stock wiring and installation location, I'll replace that also. The head unit will stay the same, for good or bad, because everything on this car seems to be integrated thru it, and I don't want to mess with the functions. The electronics in this car are quirky enough!

One thing about the replacement speakers--you don't have to butcher the original speakers to get the mounting rings. Crutchfield has adapters that fit the car, and they work just fine. They do leave a gap around part of the ring, but I caulked that closed with silicone caulk. Easy fix.

One word of caution for anyone doing this job--check that each speaker works as you install it. I had a blown tweeter right out of the box, and if I had waited to test it after the install was complete it would have really sucked. This is not an easy car to replace speakers on--very time consuming with many steps. Also, take care with your + and - connectors. Lots of different colored wires to work with. Just pay attention and take notes and you'll be fine.

Nice job Jason--those vids really helped, especially the part with the strange crossover arrangement. That would have taken some time to figure out!
AS of now I have done videos on the removal of the front and the rear door panels (diff videos).

Also I am doing another install for a different ST owner. Same set up as me except for He is going to be running the alpine 5ch amp. I will be making a step by step install_guide.pdf.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Crimp connectors are only good when using a PROPER crimping tool.

Good:


Bad:
Your bad picture has the crimp connector tool in the dead center of it. You use the correct size nipple to crimp the cap. I have never ever had a crimp cap fail when using the correct size nipple.
 

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That's why you don't use caps. It is also what is found in most cheap sets of kits. Plus it allows you to swap leads when a manufacturer switches the harness leads, much like Kenwood and Pioneer have done in the past. For outside US markets, where ISO is the standard connecter used. Swap connectors as you trade vehicles, if the HU does not already come with a OEM to ISO connector already. Makes PnP that much easier. Unlike what they offer in the US.
 

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Sony OEM to ISO:



ISO to BMW OEM:


Older Sony 6000 system phone adapter:
 

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See my reference to Kenwood/Pioneer issues.
 

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I had a question for anyone who has the ST3 setup w/ the subwoofer. Does the stock setup not have some kind of crossover to channel low frequency to the sub only and not the door speakers as well? My door speakers have the full range trying to play and it seems as though a real improvement would be to block the low frequency from the doors and channel only to the sub in the trunk.

Just wondering if this is typical or an oversight in my car that I should have the dealer address.
 

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My st3 seems to have full range going to the doors as well. When I upgrade the system that will be eliminated. I plan on only allowing 70hz and up to the door speakers and about 80hz and lower to the subs in the back. I plan on using the clean sweep to sum and level the sony amp outputs and then the corssovers in my amps to direct frequencies where I want them. I plan on doing my system over the next two months, I just need to get the clean sweep still.
 

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I had a question for anyone who has the ST3 setup w/ the subwoofer. Does the stock setup not have some kind of crossover to channel low frequency to the sub only and not the door speakers as well? My door speakers have the full range trying to play and it seems as though a real improvement would be to block the low frequency from the doors and channel only to the sub in the trunk.

Just wondering if this is typical or an oversight in my car that I should have the dealer address.
This is typical. The Sub is an option, so for cars that don't have the sub they route the lows to the woofers in the rear. Most OEM systems work that way. They have two ways in the front and woofers (or two-ways in the back if it's a 4 door). The two-ways may be single unit, or split up component wise (tweeter + woofer). Even if they add a sub they don't filter out the low's from either set of woofers (this is why in many cars cranking the bass gets washed out and annoyingly bad sound).

Obviously if you buy a car with an upmarket (branded) system, this can change. Bose is known to not do it for example, but others I think do.
 

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Thanks for the input...it's a shame they couldn't fine-tune it for the addition of the sub. I guess if you want something done right...
 
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