~~ CAMRY AUDIO INSTALL ~~

Orion CS 63CX 6 1/2

Orion C63

 

 

 

Orion CS 63CX 6 1/2

Orion C693
(yes it's a doctored pic)

 

 

Audiobahn A4004T & A2002T

 

 

 

SRV303

Clarion SRV303 120W Powered Subwoofer

 

 

 

Part Number 299-028

Aura Bass Shaker Pro - 50W

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
  • I began planning the Camry install as fairly simple upgrade. The factory four speaker system is very basic. It's my wife's car mainly and she wanted it to be simple to use and to look original. I decided to keep the factory head unit and added the factory 3 disc in-dash CD changer (which is made by Alpine). I picked up the Orion C63 6.5" for the front doors and C693 6X9 for the rear deck. Both are 3 Coaxials and installed in the factory locations.
     

  • For the low end I originally planned a custom sub box mounted against the rear seat bulkhead and set up with two Image Dynamics ID8 subs facing into the trunk.
     

  • For amplification I picked up a Hifonics Z700 5 channel amp to mount on the front of the sub box. As installed on the box it would be viewable and accessible via the trunk pass through. A PAC or Navone interface will be used to connect the factory head unit to Z700.
     

  • Had to make a "slight" change to the sub and amp part of the install. My wife decided she wanted to be able to use the pass-thru so I came up with a new idea. I picked up the Clarion SRV303 powered subwoofer that will be mounted to the bottom of the rear shelf for sub duties. I'm working on a way to augment this with a couple of Aura Bass Shaker Pros. Maybe under the center console or in the dead area behind the rear seat cushion (probably my best bet).
     

  • The new amp is a Hifonics Warrior Eagle 4 channel for the Orion's. It's rated  50Wper channel at 4 and 100W per channel at 2. With the 3 Orion's it should work out to about 66W per channel(rated). I have picked up a Hifonics MercuryX 50W x2 amp to power the Bass Shaker's (when I find a mounting place for them). Both of these have a small "footprint" and will be mounted in the left side of the trunk wall in a custom amp rack.
     

  • FEB 06: Due to problems (space and cooling issues, they were too tall) fitting the Hifonics amps to the trunk wall amp rack I have made a another change. I have purchased an Audiobahn A4004T for the Orions and A2002T for the Bass Shakers (pictures to come). Not only do these fit better into the amp rack location (height wise) they have internal fans  that should help the cooling issue(plus cool blue lighting!, Ooooohhh!). I looked at these amps before but the price was a limiting factor. Since Audiobahn has released a 2nd generation of these amps the 1st gen's have been discounted and therefore more favorably priced. I will hold onto the Eagle but resell the Mercury as I have a few good "old school" 2 channel amps for future projects.
     

  • The amp rack is currently under design/construction. I hope to have it in MDF by April 2006 (I have too many other distractions). The Audiobahn's turned out to be a little wider but I've been able to modify the rack to fit them the way I want. Due to the lighting I decided to put a plexiglas window in the rack cover. It will be fitted with a pop in cover for non "show" times.
     

  • I have decided (I think) on the Bass Shaker mounting. Under the front seats. The heater duct blows out under the seats but I think I can place the units away from the direct flow. Besides the Shakers won't be maxed (and therefore generating major heat) very often. This location was also endorsed by the wife (and it is her car!) so it's definitely the first choice. Her comment was "if they're in the back seat you can't feel it".
     

  • All wiring will be KnuKoncepts.
     

  • All interior, door and trunk surfaces will be dampened with a combination of spray on and self adhesive products.
     

  • Install pix and descriptions to follow.
     

  • My plan is to have it all installed by June 2006 (her birthday!). Hopefully it'll happen.
     

 

     

The Clarion proaudio company                         

David Navone - Navone Engineering

 

 


Template


Pieces


Test Fit


Painted


Rack & Cover


MDF Cover test fit


Clarion powered sub


Wire run


Bass Shaker mounting


Amps fully wired


Access Cover View


Fully Hidden


Blue Amp Lighting


Front speaker baffle


Front speaker mount


Orion installed


Navone LOC


JBL P632 Components


Tweeter installed in mirror cover


The set installed


Rear JBL's





SWS-8





  • In April 2006 I did get the amp rack built and actually installed in the car by early May. It came together pretty well with only a couple of "hiccups". All the wood is 5/8" MDF.
     
  • The first pic is the cardboard template for the cover to establish how much space I actually could use.
     
  • Next is the puzzle pieces :) I actually had to remake the bottom amp "shelf" after discovering that it put the amp to close to the floor and the RCA cables wouldn't fit. That's why I dry assembled and did another test fit. I routered notches in both shelves for the cables. The piece on the right of the rack doubles as a mount to the car and for the power/ground distribution blocks. Only one extra hole was drilled for this mount. The odd bracket on the left side was created to utilize an existing hole.
     

  • Once I got the fit right I drilled the cooling holes in the rack sides (reasonably lined up the Audiobahn's fan exhaust). Then it was assembled and screwed together using Liquid Nails glue for extra strength. After one more test fit with both amps installed it was ready for painting. I used a primer/sealer first then 2 coats of Zolotone (trunk paint). The blue streaks were added for a little color and match the amps blue lighting. The outer sides and block mount were then painted black then the whole rack was clear coated.
     

  • Now that the rack is done it was time to build the cover. I had the template which I test fit again with the rack installed in the car. Once I was happy with the basic fit I cut it out of the MDF. The strip on top was required to fill a slight gap. I spent a lot of time getting the fit just right. It took much recutting, filing and sanding to get it the way I wanted it. I got the fit right and then drilled the cooling holes and cut the amp access/viewing window (which also lightened it by about 1 LB). I was going to install a piece of plexi but clearances and simplicity changed my mind. I made an access panel out of a piece of pegboard instead. I figured it would help with cooling too. The cover is attached to the rack with four screws threaded into nutserts in the rack.
     

  • Next up was carpeting the cover with matching trunk type material. I took my time and even with the many curves and sharp corners it came out tight and smooth. The thin unbacked material is very easy to work with. The access panel was covered in the same carpet and fits flush into a routered recess. It's held on with thin strips of the hook side of velcro glued to the access panel.
     

  • Over the next few weeks (in between work and other projects) I ran the 4AWG KnuKonceptz power and ground cables and installed the inline fuse holder. I also was able to fabricate the brackets for the Clarion Subwoofer and install it. After mounting the KnuKonceptz distribution blocks on the rack I ran the cables (KnuKonceptz of course) from them to the amps.
     

  • Memorial day 2006. I decided to take the long weekend to rip out the interior and at least run speaker and signal wires. Hopefully I can get the Bass Shakers installed and the front Orions.
     

  • Well, I not only ran all the wiring I got the whole system all installed and fully functional. Planning helps!
     

  • With the amps mounted in the rack I set it in the trunk and one by one ran all the front speaker and signal (RCA) cables to their intended termination point. I ran the signal cables up through the center console and the speaker wires down each side of the tunnel. The Orion crossovers for the front speakers are mounted to the inside of the front console "wall". I then ran the two sets of wire through the factory door conduit to the Orion  C63's.
     

  • The factory speakers are molded with the speaker mount/baffle so I had to fabricate some new ones to mount the Orions in. I just used the factory shape for aq pattern and cut new ones out of 1/2" MDF. With a slight recess in the mount holes I was able to use the original bolts. Tee nuts hold the speakers to the MDF mount and a foam baffle keeps the speaker dry as well as helping the bass. Aluminum faced sound deadener was used on the door metal. The Orions have pivoting tweeters so they were aimed toward the center of the car. Since the speakers are mounted very low in the doors it's not as good as separate tweets mounted higher but it works.
     

  • The Bass Shaker Pro's were mounted to the bottom of each front seat. It is better to mount them to the floor but I didn't want to drill holes through the floor. Very hard to "fix" if the Shaker's were ever removed. I did have to "massage" the seat pan a little to make them fit flat though. You do feel the bass quite well! I will install a remote Bass Knob on the A2002T to adjust the Shaker's bass.
     

  • The rear Orions are mounted directly into the rear deck metal in the same type of foam baffle as the front speakers. Their tweeters were also aimed toward the center. The crossovers are mounted on the trunk bulkhead just forward of the speakers. Sound deadener was used on both sides of the rear deck as the Clarion SRV303 powered sub is mounted to the underside between the speakers. Speaking of the Clarion, it puts out decent bass but it needs the Bass Shaker augmentation. The whole system sounds clean with defined bass but is definitely not a "thumper" system! I may have to come up with a way to get a real sub in there somewhere. Maybe a 10" Image Dynamics in a custom fiberglass enclosure in the right side corner of the trunk!
     

  • The four channel KnuKonceptz cables were run up to the Navone N-774V four channel Line Output Converter. It's zip tied to the console bracketing. The other side of the converter was wired between a Metra OEM radio harness and vehicle harness to the OEM radio and indash changer. Using both harnesses allows keeping the factory radio wiring while be able to wire the speaker leads to the LOC. No cutting or splicing of the factory wiring was required so it can be put back to stock if needed (but who wants that!). All this wiring was soldered.
     

  • With everything wired up and installed all that was left was tuning. All gains were adjusted starting with the LOC then the amps. When all sounded good I mounted the amp rack back into the car and installed the cover. The whole system looks and sounds great and I did get it done well before my wife's birthday.
     

  • We took the Camry on a short vacation to the Napa Valley (for her birthday!) and I got to listen to the system for an extended period and over a wide range of music. I even tried the MP3 player through the cassette adapter and it even sounded quite good. It was quite hot that week but even with the trunk packed I observed no amp overheating problems or any other glitches. I also have observed no noise problems so my grounds are solid and all wiring is routed well. I'm sure the use of twisted pair wiring helps as well.
     

  • So with good planning, use of quality components and a realistic idea of the outcome I achieved my goal, A good quality sounding audio system. My wife is happy with it as well.
     

  • That said, with a speaker upgrade using separates in the front and a real subwoofer...
    Nah, I better just go on to my next audio project in the Dak.
     

  • Well, I couldn't leave it alone. The Orion's just didn't sound right to me. I thought the 3 ohm VC's would be cool because it effectively gave me more power to the speakers. That worked but they just didn't sound clean enough. Plus bringing the high soundstage up would be better.
     

  • I found some JBL 9602 6x9 coaxial's on craigslist to kind of match the P632 6.5" components I had and wanted to put in the Camry (they were originally purchased for my F150 upgrade). This way the main speakers are all 4 ohm now and all JBL as well.
     

  • The 9602's in the rear were just a drop in replacement. Luckily the wiring from the amp to the Orion crossovers was long enough. I did end up making a adapter plate out of 1/2" MDF to match the factory speaker holes. It gave me a little more height too as the JBL's were a little shallower than the Orion's.
     

  • I pulled one of the inner mirror covers off and measured out where the tweets would fit. I wanted do it without hacking too much of the cover while still getting decent placement. Since they swivel it wasn't too critical. I did have to move them fairly far forward to clear the mounting nut for the mirror. On the cover, once I cut away some of the "bracing" I whipped out the hole saw and popped the tweets in. The stock JBL wiring on the tweeter was just long enough to mate up to the original Knu Koncepts wiring I ran to the Orions. I was being lazy and didn't want to run all new wire just to the tweets :)
     

  • Once that was done I popped in the JBL mids. Just a simple swap. The JBL crossovers went in the same place as the Orion crossovers.
     

  • The initial fire up of the new speaker setup sounded pretty good. After a little amp tweaking they sound much better than the Orions ever did. Even though they're only 4 ohm it's loud enough. I knew it was right when my wife (her car after all) noticed the difference in sound and said it sounds much better.
     

  • I also finally found a gain control knob that works with the Audiobahn amp for the sub system. Right now it just tweaks the Bass Shakers but a change is coming in the sub system too.
     

  • That change is an Earthquake SWS-8 8" shallow mount subwoofer (e-bay of course!). Now I need to build a box for it. It'll mount to the same mounts the Clarion is mounted to now. Stay tuned!
     

  • Just for grins I threw a 12" Image Dynamics in my test box and wired up in the trunk. Without the Bass Shakers wired it sounded sweet and it wasn't even a tuned box. Couldn't talk the wife into it though :(
     

  • Got the new small sub box installed. Constructed with 5/8 MDF. I could have used 1/2 for more volume but I had 5/8 in my "stock". Outside dims are 14.5 x 9 x 3.375  and volume is about .10 cu ft not including sub displacement.  You can see it's stuffed full of cotton batting. It's actually slightly bigger than Earthquake's recommended size of .07 cu ft so I guess I'm good with my box. Since it's pretty much hidden I opted for not painting the MDF grill black before stretching the grill cloth over. The grill pops on with home audio style grill mounts. Holds on tight so far. Tri-moded with the Bass Shakers it sounds much better and has much more bass than with the Clarion powered subwoofer.
     

  • I think the system is now complete.