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Discussion Starter #1
Hi, i've recently removed (to much relief!) the Connect Nav+ that came with my pre-owned GT and replaced it with the Pioneer AVIC-F700BT. My oh my what a major ******* improvement!!

I know a lot of people hark on about the Pioneers but I've upgraded all the firmware, BT software and added mods (GTIMatt's mods, in case anyone's interested) - now it works a treat! The mods certainly clear up a lot of the shortfalls in the released version of the Pioneer. That said, I have heard about a major firmware upgrade coming out in June - maybe that will address the issues without the need for clever people to provide mods...

A couple of annoyances do still remain, though (about which I will digress...):

  • Contacts management - NIGHTMARE! Can't view, edit or delete individual contacts on the unit. Have to extract the Phonebook onto an SD card, edit them on a computer then copy them back over again (all done in WinCE mode).
  • "Favourites" (locations) - can't be edited or individually deleted, which is annoying if someone moves house (means you have two entries for some people, or delete the entire list of favourites and start again).
  • Directions to POIs - two options to look at POIs. 1) by going through the menus to search for POIs, which brings up a list according to your search but doesn't tell you in which direction they are (imagine driving along somewhere unfamiliar and needing petrol, bring up a list of petrol stations but nothing to tell you if they're in the direction of travel or behind you or what; 2) second option is to click on the map, press Info and show list of POIs near current location / along current route etc, which makes it easier to see which POI you should be heading for. Problem with this option, though, is that you can't select the POI as a destination and get directions to it!). Quite frustrating...
  • Finally, just a general gripe, but Settings menus are all over the place (eg most settings for Navigation are under "Navi Options" but Traffic settings are under "Destination", which is a completely separate menu). That's just one example, there are quite a few like that. I just think it's a weird way to build software...
Anyway, that's a short summary of my experience with the Pioneer. For search purposes, also applies to the F900 and F90, I think...

Back to the real issue at hand... SPEAKERS!

So, have hooked up the Pioneer and audio is a MAJOR improvement on the Connect Nav+ (tbh, that's not a surprise - it was a piece of sh*t, there's better fidelity in a sewer). However, I'm comparing sound quality to my Ford Focus Ghia which has an iPod connected up to a simple, 15-yr-old Sony HU, and sounds amazing for all types of music (hip hop with heavy bass, guitar rock, jazz, you name it - I can pump it up loud and it sounds good and clear. No amps, subwoofers or EQs, just the iPod, HU and factory-fit speakers).

My GT, on the other hand, has about half the volume tolerance before the sound gets flat, warbled, or distorted. Sometimes mid range and sometimes bass bottom out, but usually it's both! I suspect my Ford has pretty good speakers because it's a TotR Ghia. My GT didn't come with the Bose sound system, so suspect my speakers aren't as good as they could be, and I'm guessing this is where my next improvement should be.

So my question is, has anyone upgraded their (non-Bose) GT speakers, what have they been replaced with and what are the results?

Specifically, has anyone got same / similar set up as me?!

Hope there are some out there with relevant experience to share.

T
 

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AO Silver Member, 155 Lounge Winner 09
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worth upgrading the factory speakers for sure. and unless you carry rear passengers heaps (and want to cater for them), just upgrade the front speakers to the best you can afford. though, if there's no plans for an amplifer, no point overcapitalising. 'no amp' budget might want to be around UK$100; for over UK$150, they are only worth having if you add an amp, to get the most out of them, as well as sound deaden the doors.

there's plenty of room in the GT doors for virtually any 6.5" component speakers (for the woofer anyway). you may need to slightly modify the factory tweeter location to fit bigger aftermarket ones; not a big deal if you are good with such things.

best to replace the plastic factory speaker holder with an mdf wood spacer, cut to the right size to suit your new speakers. it will ensure the screwholes line up, that there are no air leaks/gaps, and make it to the right depth to suit the new speaker.

to access the speakers, the whole door trim requires removal. not a big process if you have done this sort of work before.

i fitted Dynaudio E650 6.5" woofers, and made 39mm deep spacers (18+18+3mm pieces laminated together).

http://pic20.picturetrail.com/VOL97/467659/19095446/314773615.jpg
http://pic20.picturetrail.com/VOL97/467659/19095446/319876520.jpg

without knowing what you are wanting to spend, who's going to do the installation (DIY vs pro), or what you are aiming for (in terms of building up a complete sound system), i won't go into further details at this stage. but happy to offer further advice if you want it. :)

:)
 

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Have a read of this thread and look at the pictures I put in there of changing my GT speakers:
http://www.alfaowner.com/Forum/ice-and-blue-and-me/89188-soundsystem-upgrade.html You need to be handy with some MDF and buy some new clips for the top of the doors (few pence) as they break, but apart from that its pretty easy.

Big improvement over factory fit, which are really cheap and nasty, and I have seen a lot of cheap and nasty speakers in my time!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Paul, Shiney, thanks for your responses. This is more involving that I thought - had naively hoped I'd just buy some good quality speakers and swap them out!

I was thinking about getting something like this (for use without amp):
Kenwood KFC-X1720P High Performance 17cm Component Speaker - KFC-X1720P from Kenwood

Is this the sort of top end front component speakers I should be aiming for? Any other suggestions?

I'm not really equipped to make the deadners at the moment (all my tools etc are in storage and I have not outdoor working space) - will see if someone can make some for me.

Shiney, I saw on another post that you had some Dynomat foil all over the inside of the door - what's that for?

Does anyone know the maximum depth I can use on the GT (or does that depend on the deadners I use?)?

Thanks all, you make this place an invaluable resource for peeps like me!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
What were the mods you did?
You can find out all about hacks and mods for the Pioneers at AVIC411.com • View forum - Hacks/Mods: F-Series

I went for GTIMatt's mods for simplicity of installation - just did it a couple of weeks ago. Apart from improved in-map layouts and better usability, one of the key mods from GTIMatt is the Nav Mute button - turns off the nav voice at the touch of a button from the map screen.

Check out the avic forum - let me know if you get stuck. Have read a lot recently so can distill the key bits for you, if you get stuck. Happy modding!
 

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tarrier, its not drop in I am afraid as the Alfa speakers have a nasty plastic rim round the outside, I don't have a pic to hand but I am sure shiny does in his vast archive ;)

The long and shot of it is that the Alfa speaker has its own "rim", about 1"/3cm around the outside of the speaker to space it from the door. An aftermarket speaker has no such rim. You can buy plastic mounts, I did partly to see if I could cheat the MDF dust and partly because I could use them as a template and you could use these. They were a bit flimsy though so not the best, but perfectly acceptable if you were running the speakers on the HU I expect. I am putting 150w (thats an Alpine watt not a normal watt either ;)) into each door so built the MDF ones.

The kenwoods do not look that sutible to me as they are 100w RMS and the head unit is going to be a bit underpowered. Also as you can see from your link they have a crossover box you have to hide in the door, so see my pic above again you can see I spent some time with door card on/off to work out where I could mount it, then had to make a bracket to hold it in the right place while the door card went back on.

The tweeters are just split off the woofer wiring I believe in the factory setup. You could leave the factory tweeters alone and just replace the main driver. Still need to take the door apart though so still not a simple job. Something like this might be ok:
Kenwood KFC-1690ie - 16cm speakers - KFC-1690ie from Kenwood

Its the old time vs result tradeoff I am afraid!
 

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AO Silver Member, 155 Lounge Winner 09
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I was thinking about getting something like this (for use without amp):
Kenwood KFC-X1720P High Performance 17cm Component Speaker - KFC-X1720P from Kenwood

Is this the sort of top end front component speakers I should be aiming for? Any other suggestions?
there isn't much point IMO on spending more than about UK$100 (which those kenwoods are priced at, but retail for much more) on speakers if you won't run them off an amplifier. you'll never get the best out of them.

i've not listened to those kenwoods, but kenwood are not renowned for high quality speakers. those could be an exception, but i wouldn't buy without auditioning first (applies to any speaker).

safer bet for us to recommend speakers from specialist speaker brands, like:
*boston acoustics S60, SX60
*focal 165A1, 165V1
*mb quart DSG-216
*hertz ESK165, HSK165
*morel pulse, tempo

worth having a listen. go to some specialist stores and see what they recommend for your budget.

Shiney, I saw on another post that you had some Dynomat foil all over the inside of the door - what's that for?
that is 'sound deadener'. it is self adhesive. it reduces audible resonance and stops rattles. but i also use it to help seal over the gaping service holes; this is probably more beneficial than stopping the resonances. creating a 'sealed enclosure' for the speakers greatly improves clarity and bass. it's a 'required' installation step for any good quality installation. not essential, but for anything better than 'entry level', should be done (doesn't have to be as extensive as what i've done, to be of benefit, so long as the service holes are covered).

Does anyone know the maximum depth I can use on the GT (or does that depend on the deadners I use?)?
i don't know the exact max depth, but it is 'deep'. the doors should fit virtually any readily-available 6.5~7" driver without probs. a standard driver might be 50~60mm deep, and that's no issue. of course, the spacer ring is important to ensure it fits.

my spacer ring is about 39mm deep/thick. my speakers has a depth of 67mm.

tarrier, its not drop in I am afraid as the Alfa speakers have a nasty plastic rim round the outside, I don't have a pic to hand but I am sure shiny does in his vast archive ;)

The long and shot of it is that the Alfa speaker has its own "rim", about 1"/3cm around the outside of the speaker to space it from the door.[/url]

Its the old time vs result tradeoff I am afraid!
my GT has the Bose 2-way coaxial speakers. i presume these differ to the non-Bose fitment.

http://pic20.picturetrail.com/VOL97/467659/19095446/312714694.jpg

:)
 

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Shiny - std speakers are the same size, but just twice as nasty...

My speakers been in for two years, but a few weeks back I modded the door handle surround with the tweeter in to install the infinity swivelling mounts and now have much better soundstage with a slight angle backwards rather than firing across the car. Lost track of your build Shiny, how did you mount your tweeters?
 

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