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Re: Aftermarket Audio for E39? (archive)

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Posted by JimL on January 08, 1999 at 02:27:34:

In Reply to: Re: Aftermarket Audio for E39? posted by Bob Hazelwood on January 08, 1999 at 01:42:22:


I'm was very interested in your a/d/s/ site and the upgrade diagrams for the E39. Is the upgrade different if I have the premium+DSP setup? For example, if I replace the factory subwoofers with yours, will the BMW "premium" amp drive them sufficiently? I mean, BMW claims some ungodly power rating on their amp (but I don't really believe it). Do your subs drop in without modification to the rear parcel shelf? And, what is the proper diameter - 10" with the dual coils?

Also, the factory setup is with 3 way drivers up front. Will your 2-way sound better than the 3-way? I know that you have a dealer locator (I'm in the San Francisco area), but can you recommend one that really knows their stuff?



: You have been misinformed about the difficulty of upgrading an E39. You do NOT have to upgrade the audio after the factory amp. THis is costly, complcated, and basically just asking for trouble. It will not work. The best place to pick up the signal is BEFORE the BMW amplifier, where it is a standard 4-channel common ground signal. Simply plug this into any aftermarket amp which can handle a 4V signal. No problem, No noise. You can even use ALL of the already installed BMW wiring for signal to the new amp and from the new amp and the speakers. If the installer knows what he is doing, the E39 actually is one of the most simple vehicles to upgrade on the market. If a dealer tries to tell you differently, don't let them get anywhere near your car. They don't know what they are doing.
: See our site at for a few ideas.

: Best regards,
: Bob Hazelwood
: VP Product Management, a/d/s/
: '93 525 5-sp, BL/ss'd, Sharked, etc.
: BMW CCA (Boston)

: : Ok, so even with the premium audio I STILL didn't like the way the stereo in the 540i sounds. Sad that BMW gets EVERYTHING else right and then puts in a stereo that is blown away by what's in a Caddy Seville.

: : In any case, I took the plunge and upgraded the stereo. What an ordeal! You must hook the sundry equipement AFTER the BMW amplifier... Mind you this entails 12 channels of amplification (separate channel for each speaker driver). But it's still not right, the noise levels are too high! Does anyone know of a way to put an aftermarket radio in an E39 without completely trashing the dash and losing telephone functions? I remember Sony doing a concept car using an E39 but can't find the article ANYWHERE!

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