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Old 02-22-2011, 09:07 AM   #1
Darth Martel
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DIY Installing front speakers LOTS OF PICS

I've found a great DIY thread on swapping out the rear speakers but, didn't really see one on swapping out the front speakers. Figured I'd put one together which shows how to take the door panels off, where to mount the crossover module, and how to route the wiring.

So let's start by taking the door panel off. The first step is taking the little rubber cover out and using a torx bit (sorry don't remember size) and remove this bolt from the door handle area.



Next is the door opener handle. You need a 7mm hex head driver or ratchet to remove this bolt.



You now have 3 more 7mm hex bolts to remove in the following locations.

The top front of the door panel.


Bottom of the door panel towards the front under the speaker.


And lastly bottom of the door panel towards the rear of the door.


Once you get all the bolts out you can pop the panel off. It's easier if you have the window down all the way. You can start at the top rear of the panel and just pull the plastic away from the door. There are several snap locks along the top that you can pull out with relative ease.



Once you get the top ones popped out, you just need to go around the rest of the door panel and pop out the rest. At this point, you can lift the door panel off of the door. It will still be attached due to the wiring but, you can move the door panel at least. You need to pop off the tweeter now. It just pops off of the door panel with a good tug. Once it's free you can disconnect it via the connector and put it aside. Lift the door panel off of the push lock and then unhook the connectors and the lock cable. The lock cable(green thing) is a little odd but, you simply pull that away from how it normally rests and you then lift up on it. The door panel should come off freely now.



To remove the speaker is quite easy. It's one 7mm bolt. The housing is LIGHTLY glued to the door. You can pull it off without the strength of 10 men. A little old lady could probably do it.



Here's the front of the factory speaker.



And here's the rear. As you can see, I simply cut the connector off with about 3 or 4 inches of wire left dangling. I did this just in case I wanted to one day return the factory speakers to the car if I were to sell it or trade it in.



As you can see here. I replaced the stock speaker connector with spade and socket connectors. This makes swapping out speakers universal. I just need the wires from the speaker to have the appropriate mates.



Here is the crossover unit that came with the component speakers. They are Kicker 6.5" with a tweeter. I forget the model #.



I crimped on the appropriate mating connectors to the crossover unit and plugged those in. I also put some double-sided tape on the back of the unit.



As you can see here, the crossover unit fits well on the inside bottom of the door where the speaker goes.



You should prep the tweeter now. There is one screw that you need to take out for access to the tweeter. Once the cover is off, you can pull the tweeter out of the casing.



Here is the Kicker tweeter.



As you can see here, it doesn't fit very well into the housing.



I needed to dremel the tweeter a little bit but then it fit quite nicely.



Although the tweeter fit fairly well, I taped the tweeter in place to make sure it didn't move around. It's now ready for install back onto the door panel.



You now need to run the wire up to the tweeter. I didn't want to mess with the existing wire for the factory tweeter so, I just took the wire coming from the crossover unit and ran it out this rubber grommet.



The wire from the crossover unit is exactly long enough to go up along the existing wire harness and to where the factory plug for the tweeter is. I just taped up the new tweeter wire to the existing wire bundle to keep it neat.



The subthump adapter is definitely needed to use ANY type of aftermarket speaker. If you scroll back up to the factory speaker, you'll see that it's encased in that huge plastic housing. It's molded in place and unless you want to destroy the housing, you can't get the speaker out. Using the subthump adapter allows you to add an aftermarket speaker with ease.



Here it is hooked up to the crossover unit and ready for install.



Installed.



All that's left is to add the Dynamat to the door and then remount the panel. When doing the Dynamat, be sure to stay aware of the holes in the door that are necessary for mounting the door panel. Covering those up is BAD. Measure out the lengths you need and cut out where the holes are. Then remove the backing and apply the Dynamat.

Hang the door panel back up on the door via the push lock and reconnect the wiring. Be sure not to forget to plug in your tweeter. I taped up the junction to make sure it didn't shake loose at some point. TEST YOUR SPEAKER BEFORE PUTTING THE DOOR PANEL BACK ON!!! Nothing sucks worse than having to take everything off because you forgot something simple like plugging in a wire. Also, don't forget the door lock wire. Put the ball in the socket and pull on the green plastic thing until you can slide it back into it's original place. You can now line up the tabs from the door panel to the door and start popping things back into place. Once everything looks fairly secured to the door, bolt everything back up. Rinse and repeat with the other door.

Meschwenk already did a great write-up for the rear speaker install so, I'll link that here for people to easily click on if they're doing front and rear speakers.

http://www.camaro5.com/forums/showthread.php?t=123352

The biggest bitch about doing the rear speakers is getting the back seat out. The part you sit on isn't bad but, the back rest is horrible, especially if you're an army of one doing it alone. It also doesn't help if you're 6'2" and weigh 300lbs. as that back seat area is CRAMPED . If you read the instructions Meschwenk posted, you can see he tells you to pull the lever back and pull up on the seat. Pulling straight up doesn't work. You have to pull at an angle. Look closely at how the bar sits in the latch and notice how the path the bar needs to take to come out is at an angle. Also, notice how the bar is shaped as part of it is flat and another rounded. Not only do you have to pull at an angle but, you need to have the seat at an angle. It's very frustrating but, it can be done. The good news is when you go to put the seat back in, it goes in almost effortlessly.


If there's any questions, feel free to ask.

Once I get everything straightened out with the Metra and Pioneer 3300BT install, I may do a DIY for that.

Enjoy

Last edited by Darth Martel; 02-22-2011 at 09:29 AM.
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:34 AM   #2
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Great writeup! Very detailed with good pics!
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Old 02-22-2011, 10:56 AM   #3
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Very nice write up!!!

I see two issues with it tho,
1. You need to seal those speaker adapters!!!!!! If you put them in there "raw" like that, big big trouble!
2. The placement of the crossover worries me. That area on cars is known for rust and water penetration. Additionally isnt it a bugger to set the crossovers?

Did you happen to see any space where you could mount the crossover on the interior side of the door (part facing in toward the cabin)?

Lastly a question for you, when you removed the panel, are there any "fir trees" to monger up or any clips that may be a good idea to have on hand to replace?

Again nice write up.
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Old 02-22-2011, 02:30 PM   #4
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What kind of trouble are we talking about with not sealing the adapters? I would think that subthump would have put a seal on them before selling them.

The crossovers aren't lying in a low spot. They're actually sitting somewhat vertically about 3 or 4 inches above the bottom of the door. They are sealed, although I'm not sure how well. So, there is a layer of protection there from water if a little happens to get inside the door. The crossover is easy to set with the flip of a switch although I'm not exactly sure if the switch changes the crossover points or scales the amount of signal passing to the tweets. The setting is either 0, +3db, or +6db. I set them both to +3db and stuck em to the door's wall.

I didn't really consider installing the crossover on the interior door facing the cabin as it's kinda thick and I wasn't sure how much space is truly needed between the door and the door panel. I also installed Dynamat and that adds an extra layer of thickness.

I didn't really notice any fir trees but, there are some plastic tabs you should at least take note of as to not manhandle or bang in that area without making sure things are lined up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moriartii View Post
Very nice write up!!!

I see two issues with it tho,
1. You need to seal those speaker adapters!!!!!! If you put them in there "raw" like that, big big trouble!
2. The placement of the crossover worries me. That area on cars is known for rust and water penetration. Additionally isnt it a bugger to set the crossovers?

Did you happen to see any space where you could mount the crossover on the interior side of the door (part facing in toward the cabin)?

Lastly a question for you, when you removed the panel, are there any "fir trees" to monger up or any clips that may be a good idea to have on hand to replace?

Again nice write up.
Cheers
K
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Old 02-22-2011, 03:28 PM   #5
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Cool I see what are talking about.

The issue you are going to run into with the adapters not being sealed is moisture as mdf is basically really nice cardboard. It will whick up moisture, swell, and degrade over time. More than likely not for a while however this will be an issue.

I think I either hit Steve up about this or it was tossed around, they dont come sealed as it gives the consumer the ability to coat how they want. Paint, resin, glass, etc.

Cheers
K
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Old 02-22-2011, 03:55 PM   #6
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Oh ok... good to know. I've got some time then on the adapters. I'll wait till a warm weekend and seal em up.

thanks for the tip... saved me some headache down the road

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moriartii View Post
Cool I see what are talking about.

The issue you are going to run into with the adapters not being sealed is moisture as mdf is basically really nice cardboard. It will whick up moisture, swell, and degrade over time. More than likely not for a while however this will be an issue.

I think I either hit Steve up about this or it was tossed around, they dont come sealed as it gives the consumer the ability to coat how they want. Paint, resin, glass, etc.

Cheers
K
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Old 02-22-2011, 04:38 PM   #7
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How's the difference in sound? and is your car with BA system?
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Old 02-22-2011, 06:04 PM   #8
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no my car was a stock non-BA system. The difference is night and day. I'm so glad I made the switch.
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Old 02-23-2011, 01:30 PM   #9
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Great write up. The door speakers, are those 6.5"?
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Old 02-23-2011, 02:22 PM   #10
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yes they are. 6.5" components. They came with a tweeter.
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:08 AM   #11
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did you add any additional amp?
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Old 02-24-2011, 06:13 AM   #12
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no additional amp... I did swap out the head unit though to a Pioneer 3300BT which does pump out a bit more current than the stock head unit.
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Old 02-24-2011, 06:34 AM   #13
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Good write up man. Thanks for taking the time to post. This should be made a "Sticky".
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:11 PM   #14
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I agree I think this should be a sticky in the audio forum.
Cheers
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Old 02-24-2011, 12:40 PM   #15
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Very nice writeup. Thanks for the effort.
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Old 03-06-2011, 10:25 PM   #16
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i like the write up good work
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Old 04-21-2011, 11:46 AM   #17
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Sorry if i missed this but I didn't notice it anywhere. What is the mounting depth for the 6.5 and what size tweeter fits into that factory bracket? Thank you very much for sharing your install.
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Old 04-21-2011, 12:51 PM   #18
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What speakers did you use? Coudl you point me in the direction. They are Kickers I see but just curious which ones you used. Also, do you need a crossover for each door ie. each front speaker? And Ive never done this to a car before except replace stock speakers out of my Explorer but what does a crossover do? Im looking to add subs to my car via SubThump so I may also just do a complete system redo minus the headunit.
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Old 04-21-2011, 01:09 PM   #19
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Nevermind, I went to crutchfield and found these:

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_206DS62...-2.html?tp=106

By the pic of the crossover, I think these may be what you have. So the system is really that much better vs. stock that its night and day like you said?
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Old 04-21-2011, 01:21 PM   #20
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These are the model speakers and head unit I used.

Kicker 07DS6502 DS-Series 6.5-Inch Component System with 20mm Tweeter

Kicker 07DS6930 DS-Series 6-Inch x 9-Inch 152mm X 229mm 3-Way Speaker

Pioneer AVH-P3300BT

The crossovers come with the speakers. When you're using component speakers, a crossover is needed to filter the lower end signal out as the tweeters are just for higher audio spectrum signals. Subs are for very low spectrum signals and generally there's a separate crossover to pass only the low end signal to the sub. High-pass filter for tweets. Low-pass filter for subs. Everything else can go to your front and rear speakers.

If you're going to replace anything, replace the head unit. It will make the stock speakers sound halfway decent. The stock speakers aren't rated very highly as far as power and that's why I swapped them out for the Kickers. I like to crank my music up, roll the windows down, and jam out as I'm cruising.

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Originally Posted by bigwayne3000 View Post
What speakers did you use? Coudl you point me in the direction. They are Kickers I see but just curious which ones you used. Also, do you need a crossover for each door ie. each front speaker? And Ive never done this to a car before except replace stock speakers out of my Explorer but what does a crossover do? Im looking to add subs to my car via SubThump so I may also just do a complete system redo minus the headunit.
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Old 04-21-2011, 01:48 PM   #21
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Thanks man. I would replace the head unit but honestly, Im really not a fan of any of the Metra kit and the Alpine kit whenever thats released isnt much better. Another question I have than is since I will be running 2 10" subs from SubThump eventually depending on what I do first (speaker replacement or subs) would I have to run anything from the crossovers to the subs or would I just hook up the subs like I normally would?
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Old 04-21-2011, 02:27 PM   #22
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You wouldn't need to mess with these Kicker crossovers at all. They're JUST for the front tweeters. I'm not sure how adding subs works on a stock system but, I think you end up splicing into the wires going to the rear speakers and adapting them for the subs. Subthump does have what you need for all that. Honestly though, a new head unit has sub outputs already built into it and it handles the crossover so, it's practically plug n play. If you're not into what kits are available though then I don't know what else to tell you. Upgrading the speakers and adding a sub is doable and will probably sound ok but, it's far from ideal.
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Old 05-23-2011, 12:48 AM   #23
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I showed these pics to a local install shop and they had similar comments about the crossover placement. I washed my car today with a hose (not power washer) and then started on the install. I had moisture on the inside of the door, where the moisture barrier is glued to teh inside structure of the door. I think there's no good reason to put the crossover out there to rust. Living in Cali, I can tell you it will start to corrode when there's moisture around.

I found there's tons of room inside the door panel. If you look on the same side as the door lock arm (top right on passenger side) and then at the bottom, there's tons of room there. Heck if you're bored with lots of time, put it in the foam block.

My top part didn't really pop cleanly out. So half the cllips up near the window came off with the door panel. Anyone else have this problem and how did you put it back? I think the clip goes on the door first, then the weathersealslips down on top, and then the door pops on....however it doesn't look right this way.

Any help would be great!!

I'll probably post up a thread with specifics on how I got Hertz Hi-Power HSK 165's to fit using the factory adapter for the mid and adapting the tweeter's ring to work with the single phillips screw that hold the pod in place (while allowing the other side to pop into the tabs).
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Old 05-26-2011, 05:24 PM   #24
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The pics and writeup are for the passenger side. How did you get the driversside rear trunk wire harness off? The others are standard clips but the rear hatch release isn't letting go.
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Old 05-29-2011, 12:17 AM   #25
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Well, guess I'll answer my own questions just to help the next guy:

If the clips come off, there are inserts along the top of the door. They're easy to miss, but there are about 9 small slits along the top. Start with the top, closest to the door lock knob. Now, skip every other slit. Once that's in you can slip the rubber seal back along the top lip of the door.

I'm not sure how it popped out, but while manuevering the rear hatch harness released. There is a very small little rubber plunger between the button and the harness. If you're not paying attention IT WILL FALL OUT UNNOTICED. I can attest to this firsthand. I got it back together and realized the button just flops around. I never saw a piece fall and figured I'd be making a trip (ended up anyway) to the parts. Fortunately, I found it a couple hours later under the car (I'd test driven a few times), on the driveway. I'll put it in when I pull the door for replacing the window switch..which leads to...

Last lesson learned. When your wife and kids are yelling for you to hurry up, don't get in a hurry with the harnesses. The harness for the side mirror adjustment WILL FIT into the window motor levers. I had the system on as I was multitasking (system check, etc) to try and get done faster. Let the smoke out and now the driver's side window switch is inop. The motor's ok because the window auto-cracks for opening/closing, and the passenger window switch still works on the driver's door.

First time I've seen a GM door with harnesses that if crossed would smoke something, then again I haven't been installing in about 15 years.
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