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Old 10-16-2010, 12:29 AM   #1
MaxBell
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Question E30 Head Unit Wiring for Dummies

Hey everyone;

I've been reading and using the search function on here for a few weeks, but havn't posted yet. However, I've hit some pretty huge walls and so I think it's time to seek help.

My lastest project is I'm trying to wire up a new stereo into my new (old) 1987 325i E30 (Premium Sound, with the fader in the dash and the amp in the trunk) Guess what? IT'S SUPER NOT EASY! I'm wiring in a Alpine CDE-100 headunit, I'm keeping the stock speakers for now. I can't use a wiring harness as they don't exist for that old car.

If anyone knows of a good DIY or wants to start giving me some info, I'd be very glad. I can't handle "Teenage Dream" and the rest of the shitty Top 40 radio listening any more.

This post was one I found, but I am wondering if it would work out for premium sound? (i have the two speakers in the back, amp, fader):

Quote:
Originally Posted by StereoInstaller1 View Post
OK, stop right there.

If you have a non premium sound car, you do not need (nor would I recommend) to run new wires...everything you need is already in the dash.

That diagram you made in the OP is WRONG, and will smoke your deck after a while, plus it will sound really shitty.

Ask "Danny" what a difference it made, I did his in 15 minutes while we were at the Picnic.

Here is what to do:
1. Remove deck

2. remove fader

3. unwrap wires to the fader, about 8 to 10 inches before the plug.

You will find 2 sets of 3 wires, all brown, or like brown/orange.
These are your speaker negatives.



Now, use yellow/red for the left front positive and the wire it is twisted with is the ground for that speaker.
Yellow/black will be the left rear positive, the twisted wire is the ground for that speaker.
Blue/red is right front, again with the twisted wire thing...bet you see the pattern now, dont'cha?

Seriously, if this takes you half an hour, I would be amazed.

You will also see how the 2 blue wires feed into the fader, and the chassis ground.

If you see a grey/red wire, that is the dash light circuit. Cap it off, you won't need it.

BTW, the stock 20 year old BMW wire is excellent, use it in good faith.
If anyone who is in Ottawa is willing to meet with me and help me get this done, I'd be willing send some payment their way.


Cheers.
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Old 10-16-2010, 01:27 AM   #2
Eurostyle
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If you have an amp and premium sound, just make it easy on yourself and run new wires. Working with the OEM components is just a waste of time, a good modern head unit should have more power (and quality) then the 20 year old amp...
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Old 10-16-2010, 09:28 AM   #3
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I ran a whole new trigger wire from the ignition fuses and also a new line from the battery. The only stock wire I re-used was the ground wire because it was in perfect shape. It's the best idea since I tried to put a new stereo in with the old wires and it didn't even power up. I bought bigger wires to be safe since it's 8gauge and will be holding power instead of speaker wire.
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Old 10-16-2010, 08:19 PM   #4
MaxBell
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Steve, you wanna give me a hand when it comes to wiring this up, when I have all the components?
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Old 10-17-2010, 11:30 AM   #5
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Sure thing man. It ain't hard to do really. Hardest thing for me was hiding the wires. Except for the 6x9's that I had to cut the trunk deck out a bit which sucks but w/e lol.
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Old 10-17-2010, 11:46 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eurostyle View Post
If you have an amp and premium sound, just make it easy on yourself and run new wires. Working with the OEM components is just a waste of time, a good modern head unit should have more power (and quality) then the 20 year old amp...
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Old 10-18-2010, 11:44 AM   #7
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The previous owner had cut the factory harness, and here's what i used,

bought a harness adapter and a reverse harness and it works like a charm, not sure if it was for an e30 but just a suggestion if you want to go the harness route.
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Old 10-19-2010, 08:30 AM   #8
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Ok, so I've been taking pictures and shit of my install, I'll show you all when I'm done.
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