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Np300 - SQ Install

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Firewall
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Np300 - SQ Install

Postby Firewall » June 3rd, 2021, 9:12 pm

So, I have been collecting gear for this vehicle for a few years now. Earlier this year, I finally collected all the pieces to the puzzle.

The equipment list is as follows:

Tweeters: JL C5 075ct
Midrange: JL C5-400cm
Midbass: JL ZR800-cw
Subwoofer: JL 13tw5v2
Amplifiers: Alpine pdx-v9 and pdx-f4
Processor: Mosconi 6to8v8
Headunit: Stock

The reasoning behind the equipment choice is as follows:

Midbass:
The vehicle has 6x9's in the front doors. I think it will be nice to try and fit some 8's in that space. It doesn't hurt that these are some of the best reviewed midbass speakers.

Tweeters:
I have used the C5 650 component set before and I find the tweeter to be quite nice. I preferred going the route of the devil you know, rather than choosing the zr tweeter which I have no experience with.

Midrange:
Partly OCD to match the tweeter, but it also has been well reviewed. I hope I like it.

Subwoofer:
I wanted something that would fit with Zero modification to the seat. This will accomplish that. Also, it's not a bad driver at all.

Amplifiers:
Planning a 3way active.
The 5 channel (v9) will be midrange, tweeter and subwoofer, with the 4 channel (f4) bridged to midbass. Everything should be adequately powered. Obviously I would love to have jl amplifiers to match (OCD again), but they cost about $5000 more than what I have now. Also, I have HD amps in the car, so I can try something different.

Processor:
A few years ago, I purchased a 6to8 and a 6to8v8 together. The 6to8 is in the car, and the 6to8v8 is going into the van. Reason being the higher output voltage of the 6to8v8 may be beneficial when using the stock heasunit. I have some experience using the mosconi and I know what drives me crazy with it, but its NOT a deal breaker for what it offers.

Headunit:
I have the dash kit for the vehicle which allows a wider unit like the kenwood (ddx718wbt) to fit. I also have an android unit for the vehicle. The steering wheel control works. The only thing is the multi info display on the dash doesn't display any info (only aays Aux) when a non stock unit is used. Therefore to start with, I will keep the stock unit. If anything, I might go with the 10" kenwood or a Tesla style android just because...

Obviously, because of the lockdown, I will be limited to reusing materials that I have at home. Thankfully (or not?) I have a lot to scavenge from.

That said, I will try to upload some pictures of the equipment/ progress thus far.
Last edited by Firewall on June 19th, 2021, 8:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 3rd, 2021, 9:49 pm

This harness was made using stinger speed wire. The oem plugs were used on each end to enable it to function as an extension from the vehicle side to the radio side. The speaker wires are on the plug to enable diversion of the signal to the processor. The remote wire from the factory harness is about 4v once the ignition is on acc (but radio not "on"), therefore this cannot be used in my application for turning on the amplifiers. The processor has signal sensing, so this will be used instead. The blue remote wire on the speed wire was left in case I change headunits in the future, or if the signal sensing doesnt work as planned.ImageImageImage

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 8:07 am

Part of this process is to fix certain non audio related things that were previously installed by "shops".

When the vehicle was purchased, parking sensors were installed. Below, you will see a pic of what they did. Also, the rear sensor wires were run through the rear cabin filter, instead of the grommet 2 inches away. This will be shown later.
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I took this time to redo their handiwork and to install a platform for and additional aftermarket accessory power needs which may be required. Scrap 3/8" was used to make this. This board is held in place using 4 magnets so it is secure, but can also be easily removed.
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The fuzeblocks fz-1 is something that I have used before and had another one packed down for this install. Basically, it has a 30a relay and allows you to choose whether you circuits are constant power, or accessory powered via fuse placement. Image

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 8:39 am

To run the main power for the system, a fuse holder needs to be placed close to the battery. In the car, I placed this on the battery hold down. This worked, but created an additional complication when removing the battery. I decided against this route in this install.

Instead, there are two bolts close to the battery that dont seem to serve any purpose. I used this as the base for making the fuse holder mount.

I had previously cut 3/8" aluminum stock in 2" squares to make an amplifier stacking kit, but went another route. These pieces came in very handy in making the fuse holder mount along with the cutting board pieces remaining from the door speaker mounting rings in the car. The cutting board was attached to the aluminum using rivnuts and bolts.

The fz-1 main fuse was also mounted on this.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Rovin » June 4th, 2021, 1:35 pm

out of d blue comes a SQ build thread - cool !

very nice choice of equipment

looking forward to seeing d rest of this build .... 8-)

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 6:51 pm

Rovin wrote:out of d blue comes a SQ build thread - cool !

very nice choice of equipment

looking forward to seeing d rest of this build .... 8-)
Thanks man! Hope all goes well.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 7:37 pm

Some equipment pics.

Tweeters
The JL C5 tweeters when purchased separately from the component set, come with their own inline caps.
ImageImageImageImage

Midrange
The JL C5 midrange has 4 breakaway tabs for greater install flexibility. If all tabs are removed, there is a plastic trim that can mount the speakers from the rear. The plastic ring is very flimsy, so thankfully before the lockdown, I got Vulcan Engineering to 3D print a new set 3 or 4 mm thicker. Printed on left, original on right.
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Midbass
These are some monstrous drivers. Seriously hope that I do them justice.
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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 8:31 pm

So, on to the amprack.
The stacking kits for these amps are obscenely expensive when you consider what it is.

I initially fabricated a kit from scraps of red cutting board material (hdpe), but it was lacking in aesthetic presentation.

This was the first thing I had Vulcan Engineering 3D print (before the midrange rings). I took off about 1mm to get the fit I desired and put in the threaded inserts with a dab of gorilla glue. It looked great, but it was a bit too thick and looked "off"
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Went through my scrap materials and got a piece of 1/4" lexan, just big enough to work. This worked out great and looked great to me. Additionally, I hope that the led on the top of the amp will diffuse into the plexi stacking kit and give it a dim blue glow when on.

The amp board was cut and drilled with threaded inserts used to secure the amp.ImageImageImageImageImage

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 4th, 2021, 8:55 pm

Amp rack wired up. (Remote turn on not wired up as yet)
Took a page from Dean and Fernando and used tie straps instead of the screw clips. Worked great on this thickness of board (3/8") the only downside was the time it takes to line up where the wires go and drilling the holes.

Couldn't sand/paint back the underneath after the tie straps were drilled because it was already carpeted.ImageImage

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Gladiator » June 4th, 2021, 11:46 pm

Very nice install man... keep the logs coming.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby kavaninho » June 5th, 2021, 9:48 am

This is what I like to see, excellent!

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby *KRONIK* » June 5th, 2021, 10:34 am

Inside for moral support

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Rovin » June 5th, 2021, 2:24 pm

good work so far ... 8-)

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby SR » June 5th, 2021, 2:51 pm

Ah like it

Only 1 concern. Those staples used at the back of the rack have a way of coming back to bite you

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 5th, 2021, 4:23 pm

SR wrote:Ah like it

Only 1 concern. Those staples used at the back of the rack have a way of coming back to bite you
Tbh, I was getting fed up drilling holes and thought it's just the speaker wire....

Would you recommend removing them? I did add a piece of dynamat to keep it in place also. Image

I run the remote turn on wire for both amps. Somehow the grub screw was missing from both amps. Had to find a bolt with the correct thread pitch and make up two.Image

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby SR » June 6th, 2021, 4:58 pm

Use the staple to secure a tie strap to the board

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Rovin » June 6th, 2021, 6:56 pm

^^^ that is something i learnt yrsss ago when i built my arcade machines ...

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Brad32 » June 6th, 2021, 7:07 pm

I must say very nice bro, keep the updates coming much appreciated for the time taking to share this

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 6th, 2021, 7:08 pm

I actually did that a couple of times before. Seems it completely slipped me this time. Hopefully it won't be a big issue.

Installed it in the van today.

This is not an install where everything works out perfectly first time. So I will highlight the problems and what solutions I used.

This is some more 3/8" scrap used to make the base board. The board was attached to the vehicle using butyl rope. (Same thing holding down the base of the baffle in the car). Its rigid.
The amp rack and the base board was clamped and drilled to ensure the holes lined up. Threaded inserts were put into the base board. The screws were previously cut to what I believed was the correct length.

It wasnt.

I didnt account for the thick insulation in 2 sections and I had already pre cut all but 2 of my remaining screws.

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What I ended up doing was using the 2 longer screws to line up the rack to the base board, and use some gypsum screws to keep it in place. This will work until lockdown ends and I can get the correct fasteners.

All the wires were run without any issues. Wire ferrules were used where needed and the ground was properly crimped. There are 2 "free" covered holes under the center console. It was relatively simple to find a bolt with the correct pitch to use as the ground. The spot was sanded to bare paint.


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This was bothering me so added the heat shrink this morning.
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Last edited by Firewall on June 6th, 2021, 7:08 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 6th, 2021, 7:28 pm

Brad32 wrote:I must say very nice bro, keep the updates coming much appreciated for the time taking to share this
No problem. I like to see install logs. Just paying it forward.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 9th, 2021, 7:46 pm

I finally put back all the trim pieces after running most of the wires. The only wires exposed at the dash are the speaker wires which will be rolled up and tucked away until the time comes to use them.

The amplifiers are under the passenger seat and the processor is under the driver's seat. This was placed here for ease of access when tuning. In the car it is sunk behind the dash and this made setup of the gain levels a bit troublesome.

With the seats in their usual positions, nothing can be seen from the rear. A panel will need to be made for the side to hide the fuse block and wires.

ImageImageImageImage

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 9th, 2021, 9:27 pm

I had one and a half sheets of secondskin damplifier pro left over from a previous install.

Used that to deaden behind the rear seat. Cleaned the metal with 70% alcohol in preparation.

On the right side of the pic you can see where I rerouted the parking sensor wires through the grommet. Also put them in the techflex split loom (not the regular techflex) which I like better. It was initially run through the vent by the "shop"

Will probably put up a post tomorrow comparing the two.

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Not the greatest pic, but you get the idea. Almost 100% coverage.
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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 9th, 2021, 9:41 pm

So previously I said I wanted to fit the sub behind the seat with zero modifications. To that end I test fitted the subs that I had.

Previously I had built an enclosure for 2 sundown SA6.5 that didnt fit, so I wanted to get it correct this time.

This is test fitting the 10 tw3. I couldn't get it to fit how I wanted.Image


Next was the 13tw5. I was more comfortable with the fit of this driver and a little more confident that I could make it work.
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Last edited by Firewall on June 9th, 2021, 10:16 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 9th, 2021, 10:07 pm

So I started to frame out the sub box. I can't remember the dimensions off hand right now.
The wood was cut as close to contouring the space as possible. There were still some gaps between the wood and the metal. This is not an issue, as upol fibral is an excellent short stranded fiberglass filler which can be used in these instances.
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The frame was assembled and positioned, the area was taped off and the upol applied. This was allowed to dry.
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The fiberglass layers were then applied. 2 layers of 1.5oz mat were done inside the vehicle, allowed to cure and then it was removed.
As you can see, there are air bubbles in the fiberglass.
This imo, can not be avoided when working multiple curves in a vehicle with 1.5oz mat and not using a roller. This was one of the reasons why only 2 layers were done in the vehicle and the rest done outside.
Tbh, I didnt see the need to grind them out so I left them.

There is always the risk of warping the part when adding layers outside, so I didnt mix the fiberglass hot at all. I wanted a long cure time to ensure it didnt warp.

4 more layers were done outside with 1.5oz mat, and two additional final layers of fiberglass cloth (not mat) were used.
It's quite rigid. The speaker was then test fit with the grill behind the seat. Fits perfectly.

I will have to take pics of the box as it stands.
*edit: Pic of the box as it is now.
The left side is the 1.5 oz mat finish and the right is the fiberglass cloth finish.
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To complete the box: Subwoofer ring has to be cut out, material stretched and the front fiberglassed.
Last edited by Firewall on June 11th, 2021, 7:18 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby *KRONIK* » June 10th, 2021, 10:05 am

Waw hoss

I liking it

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby evolution7tt » June 10th, 2021, 1:09 pm

This is really good work! Keep it up!

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Firewall » June 10th, 2021, 9:57 pm

Thanks guys! I appreciate the support and motivation.

As I said earlier, this is a small post about the types of loom and my thoughts on them

Here are the 3 types that I am familiar with.
The yellow one is the most common type (not color) of split loom and can be found in most automotive stores.
The middle one is the common techflex (flexoPET) and comes in the widest variety of colors.
The remaining one is techflex split loom braided sleeving.
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As you can see, there is no overlap in the yellow one
This one cuts cleanly and does NOT require any finishing work.
Its quite easy to install, and MAY provide some basic protection from drips/spills.
It will provide basic protection for occasional scuffs, but can be easily cut if abrading against a metal edge for any length of time.
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This is regular techflex. It is best cut with a hot knife. If not, the ends must be treated to prevent fraying. Usually a lighter is used.
The regular techflex expands to about 25% of its diameter.
This allows 2 things.
Firstly, If the corret size is chosen, it can expand to fit over RCA ends and then fit snugly over the wire itself,
Secondly, one size can be versatile for many wire sizes due to the expansion.
When expanded, the length is decreased.

My problems with this type of sleeving are as follows:
On long runs of wire, it becomes difficult/tedious to feed the wire through.
What i assume is as a result of the weave, there is a tendency for wires in techflex to "pull" (will not lay flat/straight)
This is not an issue when installed and tie strapped, but during prep, they can be tangled easily.
Abrasion resistance is fine for use in a vehicle environment.
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The last one is techflex split loom.
This type overlaps itself by 25% to ensure that the wires cannot come out.
As a result of the overlap, its final thickness is greater than that of the regular techflex.
The weave seems a bit looser than the regular techflex, but there is an additional fabric component to the split loom weave.
This also cuts best with a hot knife to prevent the ends from fraying. (this seems to fray easier than the regular)
Also, heat treatment of the ends (using the lighter) seemed easier with the regular than the split loom. The looser weave seemed to burn easier without "sealing" the ends.
This type pretty much behaves like normal wire when prepared, without any "pull"
Abrasion resistance seems to be equal or greater than the regular
Perhaps best imo, this can be added after the fact as you do not need an open end for installation.
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Moving forward, I will use whichever techflex is easier to get the job done, as they both have pros and cons.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Rovin » June 10th, 2021, 10:23 pm

" techflex " is actually a brand name ppl casually use for braided sleeve like how ppl say scotch tape for any brand of clear tape ...

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby Brian Steele » June 11th, 2021, 12:02 am

I installed my Alpine PDX-F6 in a similar way. I oriented it so that the wires faced towards the front of the car though, Not only did that ensure that they wouldn't be disturbed by an errant foot from someone sitting in the back seat, the glow from the amps was a bit more visible and gives my otherwise stealth install a bit of pizazz.

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Re: Np300 tomfoolery

Postby sMASH » June 11th, 2021, 12:10 am

^^ since he's in the fiber glass realm, could do an end cap like the rockfords and kicker, to protect the wires from kickage.

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