View Full Version : New e90 in the family. Needs help in audio dept.
06-28-2009, 08:36 AM
My wife just picked up an '07 323. She has only had it for a few weeks and is very dissapointed with the stereo. It is pretty awful.
I have searched the forums and Google but can't find out the number and size of speakers in the base stereo system.
Would changing out the speakers only make a big difference in sound quality?
Does anybody know the wattage of the factory amp and if it could be easily swapped out for an aftermarket one?
Thanks for the help.
06-28-2009, 09:25 AM
Need more info on the car. Sedan/coupe/convertible? Navigation? Its looking like 5 1/4" upfront and 6 1/2" in the rear.
Here is a good link for you:
They have a fit guide there.
06-28-2009, 09:37 AM
Its a sedan, no navi. It's the base system. From what I can see there are door speakers, look like 4" and rear deck speakers.
Didn't find crutchfield that great. They list dozens of speakers of every size, most that don't fit the car and the couple that do require modification.
What are the quality of the factory speakers like? Will changing only the speakers have a big impact in quality?
06-28-2009, 11:56 PM
If you want quality sound off of the factory H.u., you should really look into a decent set of components for a good front stage and you can cheap out a little on the rears if need be as they are really just filler. This goes for all audio set ups no matter where it (sound) is needed. I am new to the BMW scene, but as with most cars, you can pretty easily check and measure your speakers and then go an buy from there. It shouldn't take more than 10 minutes or so to find out what they are.
06-29-2009, 08:54 AM
Do like everyone else I know does.............. walk into a car audio shop........... pretend you want stuff and are ready to buy................ milk them for all the info you can (sizes, specs, etc, etc regarding your car).......... and then tell them you'll get back to them cause you're unsure if you're wife wants to spend that kind of money and walk out. That way you can buy off the internet or people on MAX and do the install yourself for a fraction of the price.
Just speakers.............. will usually make a decent change to the overall sound, assuming you buy decent quality stuff.
If you want to get into a new amp........... read on.
On some BMW systems, I've seen people splice in RCA's to the leads going into the factory amp (low level inputs) and plug that into an aftermarket amp........ and into new speakers.
Or........... take high level output from the output side of the factory amp and go into high level inputs in an after market amp............. and then into new speakers.
Or..........gut the factory radio and the amp and go all new.
Any of those three ways still make use of the factory speaker wiring. But they will all vary in cost and effort.
My advice would be to leave the factory head unit............... change the amp and the speakers.
07-02-2009, 08:57 AM
I just helped my buddy design a system for his 2009 323. I have about five years of experience selling car audio, and have designed and installed many systems over the years. My specialty is budget systems.
The audio set-up in the 323 is the base 'Stereo' system (as opposed to the HiFi or Logic 7). It uses 2 x 4" speakers in the doors (mid range paper cones with rubber surrounds- no tweeter), 2 x 4" speakers in the rear deck (same as fronts), and 2 x 6.5" subs (yes I said sub) under the front seats.
Unlike many BMW systems with an external amp, all 6 speakers run off of the deck, including the subs.
I didn't feel like taking the responsibility for hacking up a new leased 323, so we farmed out the labour to East Hamilton Radio, who did a decent job with the install. Here is what we did for his car, which addressed the awful sound of the stock system.
1- Installed 4 channel Alpine amp with variable x-overs (front doors on HP and underseat subs on LP). Alpine MRP-F300, which comes with a high-level input (also known as speaker level input); $250
2- Installed 2 x 4" Hertz EP4 speakers in front doors; $200
We left the subs as is for now and the system sounds pretty fantastic- it's a little bright up front for my taste, but my friend LOVES it. When my friend took the car in, EHR's installers spent a good hour arguing with us that the car had an external amp, and then trying to find it. They didn't, as it does not have one, but be aware that fishing for free advice from car audio shops may yield incorrect guidance. They are used to the 328i's system which DOES have an external amp (with built-in x-overs) and tweets in the doors. Your car, like the Euro 320, does NOT have a factory amp.
The next phase in the upgrade would be to swap out the 6.5" subs under seat (which use an inverted magnet structure in a shallow plastic box) for Earthquake SWS-8s. We haven't done this yet, as the additional power from the amp really did a lot to clean up the sub's bass.
PM me with questions.
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