Soon after purchasing my Titan I realized that the factory Rockford Fosgate stereo was not up to par with the stereo I had been accustomed to in my last vehicle. Initially I only planned to upgrade the system by replacing the oem driver's seat subwoofer. My first attempt can be found here. That setup was soon replaced by my next upgrade to a 10" Infinity sub powered off of a 300w rms Infinity amplifier, the topic can be seen here. That sounded pretty good, but definitely didn't have the full range that a complete after market system would have. So the decision was made to fully upgrade the stereo with new amps, components, and a more powerful sub/amp. At first I planned to use the oem RF HU (despite having added a hardwired mp3 player ), but I continued to be frustrated with it's poor output and lack of options. That lead me to my final configuration.
I felt that if you're going to do something, might as well do it right from the begining, so this install would be a complete replacement. The parts/components include:
As mentioned before I originally planned to use the oem RF HU in this install. My main reasoning was that I wanted to retain the factory look, along with the steering wheel controls. In fact I had even ordered the Navone LOC and was ready to use it. From information I had gathered from TitanTalk I knew that the RF HU had very low signal strength and would require some type of line driver to get a decent signal to the amps. Unfortunately I was getting the run-around with Alto Mobile over their UI-4, and didn't want to pay/wait for the JL CleanSweep. The AudioControl LC6 was another option but it doesn't have a line driver. I eventually copied Bestatchess and found an AudioControl Matrix on ebay at a reasonable price. I was beginning to realize that the RF HU was more trouble than it was worth, especially when you take into the consideration that it still didn't have a quality AUX input, and wasn't near as feature rich as an aftermarket HU. That's when I ran across m95roadster's post , which had photos of his JVC KD-AR5000 installed. I really liked the clean look of this HU, plus you can color match it to your instrument panel. I did a quick ebay search and found the newer KD-AR5500 for some very reasonable prices.
First there was radio, then 8-track and cassette found their way into our cars. Compact discs took over in the 1990s, followed by everything from DVDs to iPods. Now JVC's KD-AR5500 CD receiver lets you play back songs from Secure Digital (SD) cards. Fill your pockets with the tiny memory cards and hit the road; hours of music will now quite literally fit in the palm of your hand!
And this convenience comes bundled with an array of high-performance audio and a host of connection options. Its motorized, flip-down faceplate features a user-friendly, touch-screen control panel with Voice Support. Just touch the large, bright screen and you get spoken acknowledgments of each command you enter. Too cool!
Touch control isn't this display's only trick, either. It also offers a palette of over 1,700 variable colors, so you can set the receiver to match your interior, your outfit, or your mood! And with the PICT (Personalized Image Capture Technology) feature, you can load slide shows of your own digital images via the CD or SD card inputs.
JVC's DiAS digital AM/FM tuner delivers powerful radio reception, and you'll enjoy superb CD, MP3, and WMA playback, courtesy of the Advanced Multi-bit DAC (digital-to-analog converter). The on-board MOSFET amp (22 watts RMS x 4) ensures clean, realistic sound, while the 7-band iEQ (with its 12 preset tone curves) gives you the tools to shape that output to match your car's acoustics. Use the three sets of preamp outputs to send a powerful 5-volt signal to your external amps.
CD receiver with built-in amplifier (22 watts RMS/52 peak x 4 channels)
plays CDs, CD-R/RWs (including discs loaded with MP3 and WMA files), and Secure Digital (SD)
7-band iEQ with 12 preset tone curves
motorized, slide out, detachable face with multi-color display
touch screen control with voice support
SIRIUS satellite radio controls
DiAS digital tuner
18 FM/6 AM presets
1,728 variable color display with PICT custom image software
5-volt front, rear, and subwoofer preamp outputs
dedicated subwoofer level control
advanced multi-bit DAC (digital-to-analog converter) for accurate sound reproduction
direct track access (tracks 1-12)
CD/MP3 changer controls
CEA-2006 compliant amplifier
CD frequency response 5-20,000 Hz
CD signal-to-noise ratio 102 dB
FM sensitivity 11.3 dBf
warranty: 2 years
In order to install this single DIN HU, you need to get an install kit (either the Nissan 2 DIN Face and Metra or the Scosche.) I went with the Schosche NN1451B install kit. I liked the fact that it retained the factory AUX input and included everything you need (almost )
It's a pretty straight forward install, but requires a little modification to make it fit perfect. Simply remove the factory bezel and radio. You need to then remove the A/C controls, airbag light, hazard light button, and AUX plug from the oem bezel. You also have to remove the small metal clips from the rear of the oem bezel and transfer them over to the Scosche along with everything else. Those clips are a pain, but just take you time.
The black plastic portion of the kit is what holds your actual radio. The metal mount that comes with the aftermarket HU simply slides into it, then you bend the tabs to hold it in place. Then the whole assembly screws into places using the oem radio screws and mount. You'll want to run all your wiring up to the dash prior to installing the mount.
In order to get the bezel to seat properly I had to notch the plastic directly behind where the relocated hazard light button's wires run, as it was binding up there. I used a Dremel tool to make easy work of it. I also removed a little excess material from the back of the Scosche bezel to get a tighter fit. It wasn't a great deal of material, just a few mils or so.
This is the Scosche bezel installed:
Update: After driving around with the Scosche bezel for a while I decided to go with the OEM Nissan 2DIN bezel instead. I did this for a couple reasons, the Scosche bezel didn't perfectly match the rest of the interior, close but not exact. Second, it didn't fit as tight as the oem, since it doesn't have the extra clips down the side of it like the factory bezel does.
So I purchased a new bezel from Courtesy Nissan and installed it. Unfortunately the opening in the Nissan bezel isn't as wide as the Scosche and wouldn't allow use of the JVC trim ring. Now I was stuck with a nice looking bezel, but a crappy looking install because you could see the metal sleeve of the HU. Which gave me the idea of glassing the opening to fit closely around the HU, and while I was at it I would move the SWI-X IR LED to a better location.
I used masking tape to cover the opening from the side that faces into the cab. Then I layed fiberglass and resin from the back side. Repeat this process a few times over until it was fairly solid. I also reinforced the backside of the bezel to keep it from flexing too much and having the fiberglass seperate from the plastic. I then used body filler to fill in the low spots, including the two dimples in the lower right hand corner. Then it was sanded smooth and retouched with filler and sanded again. Three coats of primer with sanding in-between, then sent off to a body shop to be painted to match the interior.
As seen from the back. I filled the opening up with resin and fiberglass, all the way to the lip of the bezel. Additional fiberglass was added for strength. To help the resin adhere to the plastic, it was rough sanded, gouged with a razor blade, and notches cut along the opening.
Here you can see the body filler (the pink stuff.) You can also see where I originally drilled the hole for the PAC SWI-X. I later centered it beside the HU for looks alone.
This is after several coats of primer and sanding with a fine grit.
The final product after paint. The paint matches pretty close, but not exact to the factory interior paint. It's close enough to where I'm probably the only one who notices. I had to have it repainted after a couple days because the cheap Bondo brand body filler (don't recommend) I used had contracted slightly. Notice the Nissan logo on the display. I have it set so that it zooms into the logo on startup and zooms away from it on shut down.
The SWI-X is a learning remote which allows you to retain the use of their steering wheel or rear seat radio controls when replacing the factory head unit. Basically it learns what signals are sent from the steering wheel controls then emits IR signals to your HU based off of your aftermarket HU's remote control.
Installing the SWI-X was pretty straight forward. You'll need to follow the Titan specific instructions found here. The install requires two resistors which must be soldered to the appropriate wires. It's a bit confusing which wire you have to tap into, but when you pull off you oem bezel you'll notice a wire that plugs to it towards the top right. It is a very narrow plug with a lot of wires. You need to follow that bundle of wires further into the dash where it plugs into a larger plug, remove it at that point. The remaining plug in the truck is the one the PAC instructions refer to. After that, simply follow the instructions for programming. It takes a little time to get it down right, but after that it's a snap.
IR LED Location:
The installation requires placing a small IR LED somewhere close to your HU's IR receiver so that the signals can be transmitted. It was a bit difficult to find a decent location. Originally I planned on locating it on the shifter finisher, but after testing it I didn't get any response from the HU. Several other forum members had mounted their LEDs on the actual bezel, so I ended up doing that. It works fairly well, still a little trouble in bright sun conditions.
Update: Since I replaced the bezel, I relocated the LED from centered below the HU, to the left of the HU. This made a huge difference with the SWI-X. Before if I leaned to the left in my seat the IR signal wouldn't have anything to reflect off and my steering wheel controls would not work. Now it works 98% of the time. I only seem to have issues if the sun is coming through the windows at a weird angle and bleaches the signal out.
Here you can see the two resistors soldered into place prior to being covered with heat shrink:
This shows the wiring. The blue clips are the splices into the factory plug. You can also see the fuse holder for the SWI-X. After all the wires were installed I secured everything with electrical tape:
Eventually I'll migrate some more information over here, but for now you can read my existing topic: Hardwired MP3 Player (the conept remains the same, except I no longer needed the PIE inline amp since the new HU has level adjustments)
Originally I never planned on installing a CD changer. In fact I always thought they were kind of worthless, as I was the type of guy who whould change CD's out on a regular basis and not have a set group of CDs to listen to. And with my 40gig MP3 player I didn't really see the need for one. Well after having the RF 6-disc changer for nearly a year I grew to like having a changer. So just for the heck of it I looked for a changer and found one that would work with my HU and it also plays MP3 discs, the JVC CH-X1500.
* World's Smallest 12-CD Changer
* MP3/CD-R/CD-RW Compatible
* Shock-Proof Full-Floating Mechanism
* Hung Mounting and Angled Mounting Capability
* CD Text Capability
* 1-bit (24-bit resolution) DAC
* See-Through Magazine
* High Precision 3-Beam Laser Pickup
* Track Error Recovery System
* Fast CD Access
* Mounting Bracket Supplied
* Magazine Lock Function
* Smart Eject
* J-Link Connection
* 1 Year Warranty
Installing the changer is very simple. It only requires one wire, the JVC J-Link. This sends power, ground, signal, everything. The changer can be mounted a several different mounting angles. At first I planned to install it in my center console. I thought this would be best for security and would also allow me to change the magazine from the driver's seat. I actually had the changer completely installed in the center console when I changed my mind and decided to go underneath the passenger seat. I felt that it took up too much room in the center console that I'd like to save for other essentials.
For under the seat installation I built a small pedestal out of 3/4" MDF and covered it with black carpet. This mount allowed the rear foot HVAC vent to still blow freely. I secured the MDF mount to the floor using the OEM installed plastic screw anchors that come installed in all Titans. I'm not sure what they are used for, but probably for some factory/dealer installed option that I didn't have. If you look carefully under your passenger seat you will see three small openings in the carpet where these holes are located. I ran the J-link wire though the same carpet hole as the passenger seat wiring runs, then ran it up to the tranny tunnel then up to the HU.
Notice the small piece of B-Quiet mat I placed on the top of the changer. I did this to ensure I wouldn't have any rattles.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-01-2006 at 05:33 PM.
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In order to avoid signal noise and keep things organized I ran signal, power, and speaker wires down the middle, right, and left part of the cabin respectively. In order to run wire down the center of the cabin, the majority of the cabin must be removed.
I chose to run all my speaker wire from the amp rack up the left side of the cabin then to the individual speakers. I mounted my crossovers (4) on the amp rack for easy access, so in total there would be 8 seperate sets of speaker wire running from the rack. I chose 14ga wire, as it was smaller than 12 and would make it easier to fit two sets of it through the rear door rubber boots. I shopped online for speaker wire, but the prices were not that great, especially since I would need a good deal. It's difficult to estimate just how much I would need, so I simply purchased a 200' spool from Lowes. While this type of wire isn't as flexible as car-audio specific wires, it was still flexible enough for the installation. I cut all my wires extra long as a precaution, and ended up using over 100'.
Since I was also matting the entire cabin I had already removed all the seats, console, carpet, and plastic interior trim. This made it fairly easy to run the wire. Where possible I ran the wire in the existing OEM wire "tunnels" that are installed below the door opening finishers. This helped keep the wiring together and protected. I used copious amounts of electrical tape and zip ties to keep everything organized and secure. In areas where zip tying the wires wasn't possible, I used aluminum HVAC tape to secure the wire to the body.
Front Speaker Wires:
After running the wires up the left side of the cabin I split the right front off and ran it across and under the dash. The front door rubber boots are more difficult to access than the rear and took several attempts before I had success at running the wire to the door. To do this I simply pulled the boot loose from the pillar and door and compressed it like an accordion. The stiffer speaker wire made it fairly easy to slide through the boot. The tweets were mounted in the stock location and were easy to wire. That section of the dash is hollow and allowed me to pull the wire up and through.
Rear Speaker Wires:
Both tweeters and mids were installed into the doors so I had to run the wiring up though the B-pillars then through the rubber boot into the door. This boot is larger than the front one and easier to access, which was good considering I had to get two sets of 14ga through. The right rear door wire was run up the left side of the cabin then across the center of the cab where the front seats mount, then to the right side B-pillar.
Photo Description: This photo is taken from the driver's side door. You can see the OEM wire "tunnel" alon the edge of the door opening. The top cover is removed for installation of the speaker wires. The speaker wires are the clear insulated copper wires bundled together with electrical tape. If you look closely you can see where the right rear speaker wires break off to the right and go over the tranny hump. You can also see a few small patches of B-quiet mat used to secure the wire. With the top cover of the tunnel reinstalled, this method takes up no extra room in the cabin. (Click images for a larger version.)
Photo Description: This was taken looking in from the passenger's side rear door. Again you can see the wire running through the tunnel, now the cover is reinstalled. There is no tunnel at the rear doors, but there are factory wires running down the channel. I used tape to keep the wires together then zip tied the bundle to the oem wiring. You can see all the extra wiring coiled up waiting for the amps to be installed.
My HU offers 6-channels of RCA output; stereo front, stereo rear, and stereo subwoofer. I utilized all 6 by running RCA cables from the HU to the Matrix and then to the Amps (3.) I went with KnuKonceptz's 4 channel 6 meter interconnect for the front and rear channels and a 2 channel 6 meter for the subwoofer. In hindsight I know that 6m was too much for my install and probably could have got away with 4m. I also purchased 2 sets of 1 meter 4 and 2 channel interconnects for the short run from the HU to the Matrix and for the amp rack (see post below.)
Note: I'm very impressed with these cables, although I must warn you to only unplug them by pulling on the actual metal plug and not the cable itself. I accidently detached one of the small inner wires from the plug end. It was easily fixed by resoldering it. I added some glue to the inside of these plugs to help prevent this.
The RCA cables were installed after the matting and amps were installed, because I would be running them down the center of the cab on top of the matting. I ran them down the angled right side of the transmission tunnel to avoid crushing the wires underneath passengers' feet. The wire was secured using HVAC aluminum tape. As I mentioned earlier, there was more cable then needed. This extra wire was coiled and secured with electrical tape and zip ties underneath the center console mounting bracket. At the front of the cabin the cables were snaked up to the passenger foot well where the Matrix would be installed. The short 1 meter interconnects were run from the HU down to this point as well. The connections at the amps will be covered later in the amp rack portion.
Power and Ground Wires
Because I am running a large amount of power in this system, the choice of 0ga power/ground wire was a no brainer. Again I went to KnuKonceptz for the power wire. The power wire would be run from the battery, through the fire-wall, down the right side and to the right rear corner of the cabin where a fuse distribution block would be mounted to the amp rack.
The power wire was connected to the battery using a KnuKonceptz positive terminal. A short length of wire was then ran to an inline ANL fuse holder that is mounted to the top of the A/C box using industrial velcro (for easier removal during fuse installation.) The wire then continues down the right side of the engine compartment to just above the A/C rubber drain line. I covered the wire in split loom, then covered that with electrical tape to prevent chafing and heat related damage.
A 1" diameter hole was drilled through the firewall from the passenger's footwell. Then a water tight grommet was installed around the wire. These type grommets have an inner rubber seal that is compressed on the wire when you tighten it down.
Once inside the cabin the power wire was run just like the speaker wires on the opposite side. I ran it through the oem wire tunnel and down to the back corner. 0ga is pretty thick, but it wasn't any trouble fitting it down the side. The 0ga ground wire was run from a ground distribution block mounted on the rear of the amp rack to a bolt protruding from the lower rear wall. This bolt attaches an L-shaped bracket to the rear wall and rear cabin floor. The bracket is bare metal so no paint removal was required. The oem nut on the bolt was used to secure the 0ga ring terminal.
Battery and Chassis Ground
I hadn't originally planned to upgrade the battery, but after running the oem dead twice after very little power usage, I decided I might need an Optima. The local auto parts stores didn't carry the reverse terminal Optimas like the Titan is setup to use, but a standard terminal layout will work with no modification.
The factory grounding cable would also need upgrading due to the increase in power drawn from the battery. The oem cable couldn't be larger than 8ga by my estimate, and many members have reported problems with running it and large systems.
Installing the Optima is no different than installing the factory battery, except that it goes in backwards. I mentioned that I couldn't get a reverse terminal battery (+ on right), so the easy fix is to just turn it around. The Optima has provisions for a base mount and the oem clamp locks it down nicely. The factory fuse terminal requires a little modification for any aftermarket amplifier installation so that you can get you power wire to the battery post. The Knuknoceptz terminal allows several different connection arrangements to make things easy. I used a short length of very stiff (low stand count) 8ga fitted with ring terminals on both ends to attach the factory fuse cluster to the battery. I notched the plastic oem terminal cover to allow it close properly over the new 8ga wire. The 0ga power wire was simply secured into the battery terminal with the allen set screw.
The new 0ga ground cables were very easy to install as well. I removed the factory ground cable first. It's attached in three places: at the battery, the bottom of the battery tray, and too the engine (I believe the A/C compressor.) I used the oem ground cable as a guide when cutting my new 0ga. This results in two short pieces of wire to which you must attach ring terminals to. Then it's secured back into place just as the factory one was. Just like the power wire, I covered the lower ground wire with split-loom and electrical tape. Tip: I found that a big set of Vise-Grips work well for crimping the large ring terminals on the 0ga.
This should give you a better idea of how I attached the factory fuse connector to the aftermarket battery post clamp.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-02-2006 at 09:47 AM.
I already had one 2 channel Infinity 7521A from my Sub Box II Project, so I wanted to reuse it in this complete overhaul. It puts out close to 100w RMS per channel, so it would work well driving a pair of components. To complete the system I bought another 7521A to power the second pair and a 1210A mono sub amp to power the subs. The 1210A puts out 1300W at 2 ohms, which will be more than enough for my two 10"s. The difficult part would be fitting these three amps at the back of the cabin wall.
Here you can see the basic layout I would use for the amps and crossovers.
The amp rack started out as a large piece of 3/4" MDF. I took measurements of rear cab to figure out how much room I had to play with. I then layed out all the components on the board and traced them and drilled my pilot holes for the mounts. In order to get the rack to sit flush with the rear wall I would have to notch the back of it so that the bolt heads on the cab would counter-sink into the board. I also added some odd thickness strips of MDF to the rear of the board. Two small blocks of MDF were added to the right and left hand side of the rear of the board for further support. After test fitting the board I added another piece of MDF to the lower left hand corner (while looking to the rear of the truck) to mount the 3-way fuse distribution block. This added piece follows the contours of the cabin floor. The last step before installation was to carpet the rack. I used black automotive carpet that I found at Wal-Mart, and used 3M spray adhesive to secure it as well as industrial staples along the back side.
Here you can see the back of the amp rack with the countersunk holes for the cab bolt heads and also the strips of MDF added so that there would be clearance behind the board to run the wires and the board would sit perpendicular to the cab floor.
This shows how the notches allow the board to mount flush to rear wall. Note the piece of masking tape, this is how I kept the board centered. You can also see the outline of the crossover and amp.
Here's the rack just prior to being carpeted. On the left side you'll see the additional piece of MDF I installed to mount the distibution block. You can also see how I drilled the holes for the RCAs, which allowed me to run them from underneath the amps.
This is after being carpeted and the carpet over the wire holes removed.
The back of the amp rack. Once again you can see how I cut the holes for the RCA cables. The plugs on the ends of the RCAs require a large hole, but I didn't want a visable hole, so I made these odd shaped holes to pull the cables through then have them coming out from underneath the amps.
This is the back of the rack just prior to installation. You can see how much of a pain it was to run all the wiring. I wanted everything to remain hidden, as well as try to keep the power/ground seperate from the RCA signal wires.
Here's the final product with the seats still removed. The rear wall cover had to be cut out along the edge of the amp rack so that the rack would mount flat against the rear wall. Small black plastic caps were used to cover the 5 mounting screws. I also used scrap pieces of the rear wall carpet to cover up all the b-quiet mat that was showing through the various openings in the rear cover.
I originally purchased the Matrix line driver with the intent to use it in conjunction with the OEM RF HU. It was needed to overcome the RF's horribly low output voltage. When I decided to go with an aftermarket HU, I figured it couldn't hurt to have the benefits of maximum voltage and a subsonic filter.
The Matrix is made by AudioControl, and basically is a line drive. It boosts the signal coming from an RCA cable up to 13V (peak.) It has 6 inputs/outputs, that's front/rear/sub. Using it with the already decent output from the JVC HU allows me to run the amps at zero gain. The idea is to reduce electronic noise in the system.
» Six Channels of Input and Output
» 24 dB of Signal Gain - 13 Volts Peak Output
» 12 dB of Signal Attenuation
» PFM Subsonic Filter
» Output Level Controls
» Balanced Differential Inputs
» Linkable Inputs - 2 Input Channels to 6 Output Channels
» Low Impedance Outputs
» Voltage Indicator LEDs
Line drivers work best when placed as close to the source audio (head unit) as possible. So now for the challenging part. At first I thought I could mount it within the glove box. After actually getting it in the glove box, I soon realized that it wouldn't fit once the RCA cables were installed. I even tried some right angle adapters. The end result was a cut up glove box. Luckily for me I was able to get a new on off of another member for a good price. The next try was to mount it up under the glove box above the passenger foot well. After a little work, I got it in there. The Matrix requires 12V power, a power on signal, and a ground wire. I ran a new 14ga power wire through the hood release grommet, under the dash, and to the Matrix's location. The turn on signal was tapped off of the HU's amp on signal, and I grounded it to a dash bracket screw.
This is the wiring prior to installation of the Matrix. The RCA cables were wrapped in split loom to protect them from cuts on the sharp dash frame (not shown.) The wire coming from the HU is one 1m 4 channel, and one 1m 2 channel. Again, HVAC aluminum tape was used to secure wires to flat spots where zip ties could be used.
This is the final installation. Note the stainless steel safety wire used to hold the Matrix secure. Right angle adapters were used on 4 of the plugs to keep the wire from making extreme bends. The red wire is the 12V power coming from the battery where an inline fuse was placed.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-01-2006 at 06:18 PM.
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Sammy Sandbag For This Useful Post:
For my mids and highs, I went with the Infinity Kappa 60.5cs. These are pretty affordable and sound pretty good IMHO. They are a component system, so it icludes a woofer, a tweeter, and crossover. They are the pretty much standard size of 6.5".
» Ceramic Metal Matrix Diaphragm Plus One woofer cone
» 1" C.M.M.D. dome tweeter can be flush-, surface-, or angle-mounted
» hi-roll rubber surround
» 2-way crossovers (high-pass/low-pass at 3500 Hz, 18 dB/octave)
» frequency response 45-21,000 Hz
» power range 2-90 watts RMS
» peak power handling 270 watts
» sensitivity 90 dB
» top-mount depth 2-3/16"
As you probably already know, the CC Titan comes equipped with 6"x9" speakers in the front doors and 6.5" speakers in the rear doors. So in order to fit a 6.5" speaker in the opening left by the OEM speaker, a baffle or mount must be fabricated. MDF mounts would be used for the rear speakers as well. Even though the Titan has 6.5" speakers there, they use a proprietary mounting layout. The other added bonus to making MDF mounts is that they provide a sturdy mount for high powered speakers. This cuts down on distortion, rattles, and resonance.
The common and probably most effect way to do this is uring MDF. In order to come up with the proper shape needed for the front doors, I took the OEM plastic 6x9 mount and traced it onto cardboard. Then I transfered the template to the 3/4" MDF. The correct size hole for the Infinity 6.5" was cut in the center of this mount. The rear mounts were easier to make since the speaker location isn't as confined. I simply cut a mount large enough to seal up the opening and line up with the factory speaker mounting holes. The final step was installing the Infinity steel mounting rings to the MDF mounts.
Here you can see the bare mount right after cutting it. A few additional cuts were made in order for the door panel to properly seal up. So it isn't an exact replica of the factory plastic mount.
This is the final product ready for installation. The entire mount was painted with gloss black spray paint to protect the MDF from moisture which is present inside the door shell. Foam weather stripping was added to the back-side to help seal up the door. This is needed because the OEM door shells aren't completely flat. A small tab made from bquiet mat was placed on the back to give some protection from the possibility of water draining down.
The factory speakers are mounted to the metal doors with bolts going into a somewhat tapped hole. These screws wouldn't be long or strong enough to mount the MDF boards. So I bought some 1/4" allen head bolts (sorry I don't recall the length), flat washers, and nylon locking nuts. The factory holes were opened up a bit with the drill. The MDF mounts were then secured to the doors using the mentioned bolts, washers, and nuts. They were torqued until the foam weather stripping was completely compressed and the mount was flush with the door. Following that, the speakers were wired in and installed.
This is the front left door. The extra length of wire was cut shorter before installation. Flat washers were used on both the inside and outside of the mount. Aluminum HVAC tape was used to secure any loose wires to the inside of the door
The left rear door.
The front left speaker installed.
The left rear speaker installed.
NOTE: I have replaced the Infinity Kappa metal dome tweets in the front with Infinity silk dome, in an attempt to have a less harsh sound. The pictures have not been updated, but the methods of installation still apply.
The factory tweets are located on the dash and the rear doors. The front tweet run off of a seperate channel directly from the RF OEM amplifier. The rear tweets are spliced into the rear channel inside the door and use an inline passive crossover. I wanted to retain as much of a factory look as possible, so the tweets would be mounted in their factory locations. Like most aftermarket component speakers, these Infinity's came with several mounting options. I chose to use the mount that sinks the majority of the tweeter below the mounting surface and has the ability to swivel or aim the speaker.
Unlike the rest of the speaker installations, installing the tweeters is pretty easy without much fabrication involved. However, the OEM tweets are larger in diameter than aftermarket dome tweets, so a large hole is left once removed. To compensate for this I went the easy route and simply cut the proper size hole in the OEM tweeter grille using a Dremel tool. The same method was used for the rear tweeters as well. The rear doors have a small grille that easily pops out from the door panel. I removed all of the factory plastic material except for a small ring. The opening in the door also had to be clearanced slightly for the new tweeters.
Here you can see how the tweets mount into the Infinity mounting system.
These are the two front tweeters installed into the OEM tweeter grilles ready to go in the truck.
Since I've already covered the wiring, you can probably figure out how the install went. Like on the doors, I used HVAC aluminum tape to secure the wires inside the dash and rear doors. I used crimp on bullet connectors to make for easy installation/removal. I also reversed the male/female of the positive and negative connectors to insure the polarity wouldn't be accidentally mixed up. Heat shrink was applied on all connections as well.
This is the front left tweeter mounted in the truck. The swivel mount allows me to point the tweeter.
This is the left rear door tweeter mounted in the factory location.
NOTE: I have recently decided to mount the dash tweeter below the factory grilles. I already have two new grilles, but have not found the time to relocate the tweets. I decided to do this to help give the truck a more factory look, as well as hide the tweets from thieves and the sun's UV rays. I'll be sure to update this once I finish and have photos.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-01-2006 at 09:53 PM.
It's always advisable to apply some type of sound absorption or anti-resonance material when performing an audio installation. These type of products which can come in liquid or mat form, help reduce resonance that is induced by a now more powerful stereo system. This not only improves the sound quality, but also cuts down on road noise, and keeps the sound inside the vehicle rather than being heard from the outside.
After a little research, I decided to go with B-Quiet's Extreme sound deadener mat. It was the most economical when buying large quantities and each order also included a roller. For the Titan, I ordered and completely used 200sq ft, which came in 50sq ft rolls. This allowed me to cover the floor, doors, rear wall, and B and C pillars. This mat is a 45mil thick composite mat which consists of rubberized asphalt with an aluminum constraining layer. While there are thicker mats available, I was planning to double, triple, and even quadruple the coverage in certain spots.
Basic: As you can imagine, this part of the audio installation is easily the most time consuming and laborious. In order to do a proper installation, nearly everything from the interior must be removed. My truck was completely empty save for the dash, headliner, and the upper B pillars. In order for the mat to properly adhere to the vehicle, it must be clean. So I spent a good deal of time vacuuming and cleaning with solvents. The adhesive on this mat is extremely tacky, so it often adheres itself to unintended spots of the truck.
This is the rear of the cabin with all of the interior removed. There's one small strip of factory mat along the center of the wall. You probably noticed that I covered the cabin vent with mat. I later removed a portion of that, as it made it difficult to close the doors and I had poor ventilation with it sealed up.
Doors: The doors took the most time since they need a good deal of mat and are a pretty constrained space to work in. I found that the best method was to cut multiple small sections of mat, rather than try to work with a few large ones. The steps are to mat the outside wall, then the inner side, then seal up the entire door.
This is the driver's door. It will be completely sealed up except for the opening for the speaker. The masking tape is just temporarily used to hold the switches and wires in place.
Floor, Rear Wall, and Pillars: With everything out of the interior, the floor wasn't too difficult. I layed extra layers beneath the future location of the sub enclosure. The floor was completely covered from the rear wall up to the fire wall. The only spot I didn't bother with was under the airbag computer, because I didn't want to mess with removing it. The rear wall was completely covered as well. The rollers worked real well on the floor and wall to push and stretch the mat into the ridges in the body. I covered most of the C pillar since I had all the plastic removed. I only covered the B pillar from the floor up to the upper plastic material, because I never removed it. I placed mat through any openings in the interior sheet metal that I could as well.
This shows the floor after the rear wall has been completed and the amp rack is installed.
Miscellaneous: Although the large majority of mat was used on the sheet metal of the truck, I used all that was left over on various plastic parts. I lined the inside of the center console with a good bit of it. I also covered the back side of the rear plastic door panels. If you haven't noticed yet, the Titan's front doors are covered in a foam/rubber type of finish, where the rears are just bare plastic.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-01-2006 at 09:52 PM.
I originally planned to use a single Infinity 10VQ 10" sub, in a partial fiberglass enclosure using only half of the rear cabin floor. Since I had plenty of power to work with, I decided to go with two 10VQ's. My measurements said it'd be tight, later I decided it would be too tight. So I sold the Infinitys and went with two SoundSplinter rl-10. These subs had good reviews and a more manageable mounting depth. These are dual 4Ω voice coils, and would be wired for a total 4Ω load, or about 425w RMS to each. This would be the third sub box I've built for the Titan. You can see my other boxes here: Sub Box I and Sub Box II
Design and Fabrication:
My first design was to downfire the subs, but this would have proved very difficult to do, so I scratched that and went with a more traditional approach. Each sub would have its own seperate air-space, of about .72 ft^3 or so. A length of 10ga speaker wire would run through the center divide to connect the two speakers to a single terminal cup. I originally planned to paint the enclosure using Duplicolor's spray-on bed liner. That turned out to be a bad idea. The spray on bed liner turned to a tar-like goo that I eventually had to scrap off, totally ruining the hours and hours of primer, sanding, and body filler I had put into this box. So in the end I carpeted the box in the same manner I had with the other two boxes. I suppose pictures are better than words, so here you go:
This is the very beginning. I basically designed and redesigned as I built, test fitting as I went along.
The small strip of wood laying next to the incomplete box was added to give the box a little more length that I originally hadn't designed for. You can also see the two holes cut out of the bottom of the box to allow for a little more clearance on the bottom of the subs.
Here you can see the chop mat fiberglass. This helped increase the mounting depth by approximately 1/2". I used aluminum foil underneath the hole to keep the resin in. I also made a series of cuts into the edge of the hole to allow the epoxy to seep into the wood.
In this picture you can clearly see the two layers of MDF on the rear of the enclosure. If you look at the bottom of the "U" you'll see where I used a router to remove about a 1/4" of material from the bottom of the box. I did this because the box was resting too much on the transmission hump.
Here's the box completed except for the top. I used caulk to help seal off the enclosure. You can also see the small wedges used as bracing along the top. Just like my Sub Box II, this box includes a 3/4" lip along the forward edge so that the floor mats fit neatly underneath it.
In order to have the subs sit flush with the top of the box, I had to make their mounting surface 1" below the top. To do this I built a router jig, so that I could remove 1/4" of material from the MDF rings.
This is a test fit of the MDF rings. You can see where the material was removed from the center portion of the rings.
Here are the rings mounted to the top board. I used 4 3/4" fine thread dry wall screws on each ring and carpenter's glue to secure the rings. Then a layer of epoxy and fiberglass was added to the edges to strenghten the spots made thin by the router. The subs would be secured using 8-32 x 1" allen head bolts and T-nuts. I had to grind off the edges of the T-nuts for clearance between the sub basket.
This is after the 1st coat of primer. Because I was originally planning to paint the box, I had counter-sunk all the screws, then filled all the holes. I also used a 1/4" round-over router bit to give all the external edges a clean look. After 3 coats of primer and a little body filler it was looking good.
After the disaster with the spray on bed-liner, I decided to carpet the box. Rounding the edges helped the look, as well as the flush mounted subs. It took me several tries to mount the subs, since I kept knocking the T-nuts out. Eventually I used a dab of super glue to keep them in place. With everything cranked down, the box sealed up perfectly.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-19-2006 at 02:00 PM.
I originally hadn't planned on a Sirius install, but I was getting sick of the local selection of FM stations, plus I was lucky enough to find a tuner on ebay for only $50 (they normally run $100.) My JVC HU was already Sirius ready so all I had to do was plug in a tuner and antenna.
The install of the SIR-JVC1 tuner is pretty straight forward and it includes everything you need. It allows you to "daisy-chain" with your JVC CD changer, so that the HU will run both. The antenna is a Micro, that is magnetic. I simply installed it through the third-brake light like is recommended for trucks. The light is easily removed by pulling the two small grey plastic covers located at the rear of the cabin ceiling. Once you have these gone you can see two nuts that hold the brake light on. Remove those and the brake light simply pulls out. The wire for the antenna was run above the head-liner to the driver side B-pillar where I ran it down to the floor. From there I ran it under the carpet below the driver's seat to the center console where the tuner is located.
UPDATE: I have relocated the tuner, read next section for details.
I used industrial Velcro to secure the box to the inside of the center console. There's not much room there, but enough. In order to wire the tuner to the HU, I unplugged the J-link wire from the disc changer and taped another J-link wire to it and pulled both through the carpet to the below the center console. I was able to do all this without completely removing the console. Then the new wire I pulled was plugged to the changer then to the tuner. The original wire that ran to the changer was plugged into the tuner. Reinstalled everything, simple as that and now I have Sirius radio!
Change in tuner location:
After a long trip (7+ hours) my Sirius went into Reset 08 mode, which is just a generic reset fault. When it does this you lose use of the Sirius functions as well as the CD changer since they are daisy-chained together. I tried researching on a Sirius forum what could be the cause, but never found any concrete answers. But, something I did notice was that the side of the center console where the tuner was located was getting pretty warm to the touch. I concluded that the tuner was over-heating and shutting itself down. As you can see in the above photo, there isn't a whole lot of room for air circulation.
So in an effort to prevent any more over-heating, I relocated the tuner to under the driver's seat where the OEM sub enclosure used to be. I mounted the tuner to the foot heater vent using 6 black head stainless steel screws. I did this prior to another 7+ hour trip, and good news is that the tuner is working perfectly now.
Last edited by Sammy Sandbag; 01-01-2006 at 01:55 PM.
The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Sammy Sandbag For This Useful Post:
Overview: Well to say it's a completely new system would be an understatement. While this system isn't going to win any competitions, it more than suits my needs. With Sirius, a 12 disc CD/MP3 changer, a single disc CD/MP3 player, FM/AM radio, a SD memory card slot, and a 40gig MP3 player I can drive forever and never have to listen to the same song twice.
Color matched to the Titan's interior lights.
Simple to use interface
Good SQ without breaking the bank
No CD pause feature
Can be difficult to read in bright sunlight
No crossover option for mids and highs
No complaints here. I love having 12 discs, and it shuffles and plays faster than the HU plays the internal single disc.
Good mid bass
tweets are too bright in a lot of songs
Overall these are some real nice subs. But don't look at them if you're into SPL, they don't really thump that hard. They are nice an clear and work nice for the mounting depth restriction. The biggest plus with SoundSplinter is their level of customer support. I exchanged many emails with the actual owner when building my enclosure. Top notch service!
Nothing much to say here, it works as advertised.
How did I live without it?
I'm impressed with this stuff. I liked it better than the Dynamat I put in my old truck. While it's still expensive considering what it is, it was priced competitively. After installing, you can barely hear any music from the outside of the truck. Another added benefit is that now the doors are heavier and have a much more solid feel when you close them. In fact you don't have to slam the doors at all with the added weight.
KnuKonceptz (wires, parts):
These guys have some quality wires, cables, and parts. I used their stuff throughout. The best part is their pricing, hard to beat.
So where did all this stuff come from?
http://www.ebay.com : Speakers, Head Unit, Matrix, CD Changer, Sirius Tuner, B-quiet, mono block amplifer
Man, that is a good writeup. I wanted to do something like that, but just didn't end up taking many pics. I love your sub box. I am going to be making my version 2.0 similar to that. I used the stock battery and terminals. I just made a slit down the plastic cover for the ring terminal to slide through. It fits perfect and is pretty clean. Awesome install, makes me want to install sirius too.
2005 Titan SE 4x4
SE Popular Package w/ captains chair
Big Tow Package
Nissan Drop-in Bedliner
Front windows tinted to 35%
In-Channel Vent Visors
Front Husky Liners
Pioneer DEH-P8MP Head Unit
PAC SWI-PS Steering Wheel Control
DLS MS6 fronts and 226 rear speakers
Fatmat in front doors, rear doors, rear floor
DLS A5 3-channel Amp (500x1 + 85x2) (Custom sub box built w/ 2 JL 10W3V2 subs
KnuKonceptz Wiring and Amp Kit
The Following User Says Thank You to ecbmxer For This Useful Post:
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