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#303520 - 20/10/07 12:12 AM New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) *****
Anonymous
Unregistered


I'm posting this thread to give others a bit of insight on different things you can do, stereo-wise, in the 2nd gen Xterra. Some people have louder setups and higher quality components, but I present some cool ideas that may be of value to somebody putting together a modest system. Be warned, it is a lot of work. wink Here we go!

I wanted a double din head unit that would give me gps and dvd playback. For various reasons and features I decided on the Kenwood DNX7100. To this, I added the Ipod adapter, aux input adapter, and Kenwood rear view camera. I also was happy with the Infinity Reference speakers I had in a previous vehicle, so I installed them in the X--Infinity Reference 6010cs components in the front doors, Infinity Reference 6012i coaxials in the rear doors. I have an Alpine MRV F345 amp in my other car, and like it alot, so I got another one for the X. It puts out 75w x 2 to the front components and 300w x 1 to a subwoofer. My rear speakers are run off the head unit's rear speaker output. So that's the equipment; on to the install.

All four door panels come apart the same. Pry off the elbow arm rest, and then the wrist rest where the power window controls are. I find that the best way to get the window control section off is to wedge a flathead screwdriver under the top edge closest to the hinged side of the door, even though it is counter intuitive. Once those are off, unscrew the two tan bolts, NOT the silver ones:


Then, use the flathead screwdriver to pry off the semi-circular trim by the doorlock, and then the "cup" where the doorhandle sits. After that, remove the brass bolt under the "cup".


Now you are ready to remove the whole door panel. It's not hard, just give it a yank and it will come off.



After removing all four door panels, it was time to get started on the rest of the interior. Reason being, I applied Raammat (Similar to Dynamat Extreme) to the entire vehicle. I covered all of it, afterward, with Ensolite (an acoustic closed cell foam which absorbs sound). So here we go.



Once you have committed yourself to taking out ALL the interior, it is not hard to figure out. Every piece unbolts and unplugs, one at a time. Eventually I discovered the factory sound deadening. It was this nasty goop applied sparingly to strategic places on bare metal. They didn't do a very careful job; notice that sometimes they buried objects beneath it:



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#303521 - 20/10/07 12:14 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


There are really only two ways to remove this stuff. One, with a pry bar of some sort. This works, the stuff comes off easily, but there's a lot of it and your hands start to hurt:


The preferred tool--I daresay the tool of champions--is the air chisel... laugh


I highly recommend to anyone that is choosing to do comprehensive sound deadening that you remove all this factory crap. Not doing so prevents the butyl deadening material from making direct contact with the sheetmetal and absorbing the vibrations it was designed to absorb. When you're done, get out the shop vac and vacuum up all the pieces (they're heavy and plentiful!!). Then get ready for the daunting task of applying the material.




All the Raammat finally applied (used a little leftover Dynamat Extreme left over from a previous job):


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#303522 - 20/10/07 12:16 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Forgot to mention: MAKE SURE TO CUT AWAY THE RAAMMAT AND ENSOLITE WHERE THE BOLT/SCREW HOLES ARE!! It is hell to put humpty dumpty together again if you don't. At this point you can start to apply the Ensolite. It doesn't have any sticky stuff, so you have to use your own adhesive. For this I really like 3M High Strength 90 Spray Adhesive, which is good to glue carpet to wood trim and speaker boxes also. Just cut the foam, glue it down, and trim to fit. This process actually goes very quickly, much more quickly than applying the Raammat. As you can see, by this point I had already cut custom speaker mounts for the door speakers. I highly recommend this if you have a jigsaw; it gives you a much more solid fit than pre-made speaker adapters.





The Kenwood DNX7100 is a big one, and adding a bunch of accessories and RCA cables like I did makes it even more difficult to fit in the dash. First, remove the stock stereo:





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#303523 - 20/10/07 12:17 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Then, make sure you have a wiring harness adapter. Solder it to the aftermarket stereo harness like so:



And then lay out all your wires before installing the stereo so you can try to get them all to fit compactly inside the dash:





A good way to wire your power and ground is to run power cable inside the vehicle to a fused distribution block. Then, run power to the amp and to the head unit from that block, and also ground both the head unit and amp to the same grounding point (make it a good, solid ground, like a seat belt bolt or seat mounting bolt). This has kept me from getting any alternator whine in the system. Use the rest of the factory wires from the wiring harness, but usually constant +12v and ground wires from the factory are inadequate and using separate grounds for amp and head unit can create a ground loop.

Next up, the rear view camera. I wanted a location that would provide good visibility while not being overly obvious. I found that I couldn't get good visibility from any point on the bumper, putting it behind glass on the inside of the back window made the view impossible unless you cleaned your back window twice a day, so I ended up putting it by the rear washer nozzle on the glass. GREAT visibility, and as it turns out, unless you're really looking for it it isn't that noticeable. To hide the wire took a bit of creativity. I had to remove the washer nozzle and notch it to make room for the wire. Then, I ran the cable through the top of the hatch door and through the grommet into the vehicle.




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#303524 - 20/10/07 12:19 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


I had to wire the camera control unit to the rear reverse light circuit so it would activate when I went into reverse. Same with the head unit. However, I wanted a way to also turn on the camera while NOT in reverse to look behind for whatever reason; pulling a trailer, etc. So I wired in a relay, a two position illuminated switch which I mounted next to the VDC button (sorry don't have a pic), and hid all the wiring under the center console:




1 3/4" hole saw is the usual tool necessary to cut holes for flush mount tweeters in the doors for components. I hid the crossovers up above the footwells on either side.



Last, I made a slim amp rack to go under the passenger seat out of 1/4" hardboard with mdf legs, covered it with charcoal felt from Joann Fabrics, and mounted the amp:



She's all back together now and everything sounds awesome!! I couldn't be happier with the Kenwood DNX7100 and the rest of the system sounds great as well.

I will post an update to this thread very soon about my subwoofer installation and PAC SWI-JACK steering wheel adapter. I'll let you use your imagination on the sub but I can tell you this... it's a 10".. and it's not going in the back of the truck. wink

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#303525 - 20/10/07 07:39 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Very good thread!

Looking forward to the PAC installation as those little controls are what's holding up my removal of the stock system.

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#303526 - 21/10/07 03:41 PM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


The PAC steering wheel control adapter is installed and working exactly as it should. You can program the unit so different buttons do different things. I programmed volume for volume and the other rocker switch for up/down track. Mode selects source, and Power I programmed for mute. There is a delay of about 0.5 seconds compared to stock. You simply get used to holding down the steering wheel button longer than you used to. Overall it was very much worth $70.

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#303527 - 26/10/07 01:09 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Here are some pics of the PAC Steering wheel adapter. These are the wires you want to use, so cut off this plug:



And this little blue and yellow wire on the left is the one that you wire into your Kenwood wiring harness.



Next, it was time to make the sub box. I am using a Pioneer TS-SW2541D Shallow Mount 10" sub. The new shallow mounts are the only 10" subs that will fit under your seat, trust me. I believe Sony makes one too, and a couple other manufacturers. Looks pretty cool underneath the Pioneer sub:



To make it fit, a custom fiberglass box had to be made. This sub needs 0.6 cu. ft. of airspace to make it perform, and to achieve this under the driver's seat, I had to cut. The carpet directly under the seat had to go, and so did the back seat foot vent (on the driver's side only):



It wasn't really so bad, since I had the Ensolite under there, it's not very noticeable at all (especially with everything reinstalled). Next, the area needed to be taped off and plastic drop cloths had to be used to protect the interior. Then, I began laying the fiberglass and applying resin over top. I used three layers at this point, for strength. You should let each layer dry at least two hours before applying another.



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#303528 - 26/10/07 01:24 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Skip ahead a couple of steps, and you can see progress:



Then I stretched fleece fabric across the gap, and used a hot glue gun to attach everything (used it for the dowel legs also):



Then more resin. This stuff could knock out a cow. It is so nasty smelling you'll want to puke--I still have some resin smell in the Xterra.



I decided the bottom could benefit from a fourth layer of mat to make it even stronger:



Then you've got to cut off any jagged edges, and sand it smooth. I decided not to smooth out this box with bondo simply because it was going to be 90% hidden, and covered with carpet besides.



Then, the box was carpeted and the sub was installed. I drilled a couple small holes for speaker wire going into the box and then hot glued the holes to ensure no air leaks. I also put down one layer of Ensolite inside the box to keep the wires from buzzing against the fiberglass inside.



Finally, the sub can move in to it's new home:


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#303529 - 26/10/07 01:35 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Now! Everything goes back together. You can see the fit on the sub box, and the clearance it has under the seat (seat was lowered all the way with the knobs on the side). The Xmax of this sub is only 6 millimeters so it doesn't appear to be hitting anything, so far.




And, here is a picture of the head unit installed, because I forgot to post one. You can also see the rear-view camera switch next to the VDC button.




The only thing I hate, hate, hate are the RCA cables. The ones I got are waaaay too long. I need to re-route them and possibly replace them with shorter ones:



So, finally, i'm done. I may consider making the under-seat sub boxes for sale if there is interest.

Impressions: The sub hits hard!!! With 300wrms going to it in a box with almost precisely the amount of recommended volume, this is surprisingly loud. Not to mention you're sitting on the thing. eek I achieved the effect of having bass shakers under your seat by using an actual speaker. wink After you've done all this, of course, it could still sound like crap if you don't take the time to tune it to the vehicle's interior and your listening tastes.

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#303530 - 26/10/07 01:13 PM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Very nice write-up! Now just do the same thing for a 1st gen and I'll be happy wink

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#303531 - 12/12/07 09:01 PM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


bump

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#303532 - 02/04/08 10:50 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


[Wave]

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#303533 - 04/04/08 08:20 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics)
Anonymous
Unregistered


Awesome!

Way to go Will, this thread was like watching Remmy on Unique Whips but so much better. [ThumbsUp] [ThumbsUp]

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#492408 - 13/08/09 12:40 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) [Re: Anonymous]
mario Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 12/08/09
Posts: 5
how much for a box? Very interested.

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#492463 - 15/08/09 11:55 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) [Re: mario]
-Will- Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 15/08/09
Posts: 7
I can make you one for $500, including sub, Raammat, and Ensolite material.

Edit: this was originally my thread... but then my login info got deleted.


Edited by -Will- (15/08/09 11:55 AM)

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#493474 - 18/10/09 06:05 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) [Re: -Will-]
MongarEric Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 25/06/09
Posts: 1
I am interested in that under-seat box as well.

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#493488 - 19/10/09 03:59 AM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) [Re: Anonymous]
Gonzo-2 Offline
Member
***

Registered: 23/06/09
Posts: 518
Loc: Lansing, Michigan
Will - What did you use to stick the backup camera to the glass. I'm installing one now and have all but given up finding a place to mount the camera (besides the license plate frame) until I saw this update. Seems like a perfect solution.

Also, is there room in the rear window washer nozzle housing to run the cable for the camera? Seems that it would be pretty tight in there. How did you go about running the cable through there?

Thanks,
-Gonzo
_________________________
'03SE

BFG AT/KO
Custom fuse panels for electrical mods
Custom backup solution mod (lights/camera/monitor)
Custom switched power outlets (8+ total)
Lots-o-Lights (6 driving lights, 10 total)

Original registration - Sep, '03
Pre-crash post count - ~1100

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#677735 - 21/01/12 01:13 PM Re: New stereo system in 2005 X (COMPLETED, with subwoofer pics) [Re: Gonzo-2]
-Will- Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 15/08/09
Posts: 7
Gonzo-2, I don't know if you're still on this board, but I figured I'd reply anyway. The adhesive to mount the camera on the glass came with the camera. It was a square of foam with adhesive on each side I believe. You also may use double sided 3M exterior adhesive. It comes on a roll, is gray, and has a red film that you remove after you've stuck it in place. It is very heavy-duty stuff.

I had to cut a notch in the wiper fluid nozzle to run my wire. I avoided the channels in the plastic where the fluid actually does run; this is the tricky part that requires a steady hand. I used a Dremel.

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