4"x6" speakers in the dash?


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millerized
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4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Wed Dec 16, 2015 5:26 pm



Didn't find anything in the search, can't believe no one has tried it here? Well, I'll take that as a challenge even if someone has.

Well, if anyone took a look at my trailer build, they'll know that if I can't find it, I'll make it. That brings me now to the stereo on the motorcycle.

I hate crappy sound systems. One of the first things I do to a new vehicle, besides making sure it's mechanically sound and safe (always first up), is 'fix' the stereo. Not bass pumping ghetto machines...just quality sound at any volume up to and including bleeding ear drums. Don't really care to let the neighbors know what I'm playing, but if I did I'm sure they'd like the quality of the sound even if they didn't like the artists. ;)

I'm also a 'keep it hidden' kinda stereo guy. Anyone looking into the vehicle might notice the head unit, but little else. Hidden, tucked stock looking. With what's out there parts wise, and what can be manufactured, there's no need for the thing to be visible to the naked eye (unless you're looking through the stock speaker grills). At least in my book and my installs. I also don't remove it when I sell the vehicle, so any modifications don't need to be 'fixed' before the new owner gets his music.

Stereos on a motorcycle are already at a sound disadvantage because of the ambient noise levels. Competing with that much 'natural' noise is a challenge. Again....I'll take that challenge. Lets see what we can do about it. Over the next 2 weeks or so, we'll be installing an amplifier (one of those new compact amps that are all the rage), an equalizer (either parametric or 'old school) possibly a new head unit (possibly...a few items may just get added instead of removing it...can't mess with what's integrated that much). Well...you can...and that may be next years project.

So far...what I'd tried so far: 3.5" Blaupunkt GTx352's in the back. They'll benefit a lot from the upcoming amplifier, but they do pretty well right now. Definitely a smaller speaker, but space is limited back there without doing a lot of work. The little 'cubbies' will hold something a lot bigger than a 3.5" speaker though...and it's just a matter of replacing the existing doors with a plate. Looking at them right now, a 4x6 plate speaker like the Polk dB641 would be simple. That might happen later....just checking right now.

5.25" speakers in the front...too big. Tried that (Blaupunkt GTx542's). You might get them in the fairing with some selective whacking of the plastics, but you won't get the dash over them. Heck of a lot of quality sound...too bad they didn't fit.

5" Polk dB501's...(and I'm heartbroken to say it cause I'm a Polk kinda guy!)...didn't have enough output to blow out wet match. Maybe some serious amplification, but their '5" might have been the outside measurement on the box they came in...NOT a 5" cone, and not 5" worth of sound coming out of it. Ohms aside, the 'stock' J&M's that came with my bike had a better sound quality. Nope, the Polk's were sadly lacking in my opinion. Maybe amplified they'll work out, but they'll never fit in the dash after I'm done with it.

Set of 4x6 Pioneer's showed up today off the clearance rack at Amazon. Poly coned, marine capable, with at least 2 ways of mounting them. We're gonna give those a try in the dash, behind the existing speaker grills. The hole will still be the stock diameter, but a tiny bit bigger speaker under them. The 'stock' J&M's being 'about' 4" to 4.5" cone and a surface area of under 16"sq. A true 5.25" speaker will run you shade over 21"sq. The set of Pioneer that just showed up will give me almost 19"sq. Driven correctly, that should be substantially more 'noise' output.

Picture is one of the 'spacer's to install them in bigger holes, or for different mounting arrangements. It 'looks' like it'll fit, and with the metal grill over the speaker hole, the possibility even exists of opening the speaker hole enough to catch some more of the eclipse outline of the speaker. We'll see. Worst case, I buy a new dash cover or a bunch of ABS and do a lot of plastic welding a 4.5" speaker back into it. But, if I'm gonna weld plastic back in, I'll inset the plate into it enough to get a set of 6.5"s in there! Hey...I'm up for it if you are! This is gonna be fun!!! (and likely expensive...but isn't that the definition of a FARKLE? Fun Accessory, Really Kool, Likely Expensive!)
And off we go!

More to come!
(yeah, the Concours in the background is VERY unhappy the wing is getting all the attention)



kybigmac
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby kybigmac » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:03 pm

I'll be watching this closely because I've been wanting to upgrade my speakers. Good luck and have fun!

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby joeincalif » Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:47 pm

just putting a bigger speaker in will not always make a difference, your radio needs to have the output power to play them.
You might try installing an amplifier if you go to much bigger on the speakers. Also make sure the speakers you use are water proof or at least water resistant.
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby Happytrails » Wed Dec 16, 2015 11:16 pm

Saw a post by someone who installed non-waterresistant/waterproof speakers and he enjoyed his results. Can't imagine getting cause in a rainstorm and looking for a bridge to pull under though. Agree that just swapping speakers is going to give lackluster results. Going to need an amp. Will be cool to watch this thread. I'd like to upgrade my audio too but its difficult because what level do you take it too. You can really throw some cash as a system making it nice.
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby spiralout » Thu Dec 17, 2015 1:50 am

joeincalif wrote:just putting a bigger speaker in will not always make a difference, your radio needs to have the output power to play them.
You might try installing an amplifier if you go to much bigger on the speakers.

Happytrails wrote: Agree that just swapping speakers is going to give lackluster results. Going to need an amp.


millerized wrote:Over the next 2 weeks or so, we'll be installing an amplifier (one of those new compact amps that are all the rage), an equalizer (either parametric or 'old school) possibly a new head unit (possibly...a few items may just get added instead of removing it...can't mess with what's integrated that much).

millerized wrote:So far...what I'd tried so far: 3.5" Blaupunkt GTx352's in the back. They'll benefit a lot from the upcoming amplifier, but they do pretty well right now.


Doesn't look like milerized's post was edited to me, I might be wrong though.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby Sempai » Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:39 am

Weatherproof, waterproof, schmudderproof.

The speakers that came on the Goldwing from the factory are no more waterproof, or weatherproof than the speakers in any automobile. If you remove the dash and look at the decorative grills from the inside, you'll see an inner grill. Sandwiched between the two grills should be a swatch of speaker grill mesh (cloth,) the same stuff you see covering any average household speaker. Goto your localcar audio installation shop, they're likely to have scraps they'll just give you.
Cut a piece just large enough to span the the grill area. I used the 3M brand spray water repellent, applied 3 coats to each side. Reassemble the dash with the mesh between the inner grill and the visible one...and now your speakers will be safe.
Incidentally, if you were so inclined, you could go to a fabrics store and purchase any material of thin enough dimension so as to fit between the grills.going this route, you could color match the grill's face to your bike's color? Be prepared to redo this every year though, as the color will likely fade away...
Keep the rubber side down.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby WingAdmin » Thu Dec 17, 2015 9:40 am

Happytrails wrote:Saw a post by someone who installed non-waterresistant/waterproof speakers and he enjoyed his results. Can't imagine getting cause in a rainstorm and looking for a bridge to pull under though. Agree that just swapping speakers is going to give lackluster results. Going to need an amp. Will be cool to watch this thread. I'd like to upgrade my audio too but its difficult because what level do you take it too. You can really throw some cash as a system making it nice.


Some have used non-waterproof speakers, and sprayed the cones with lacquer to seal them, with good results.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby joeincalif » Thu Dec 17, 2015 10:24 am


The speakers that came on the Goldwing from the factory are no more waterproof, or weatherproof than the speakers in any automobile. If you remove the dash and look at the decorative grills from the inside, you'll see an inner grill.

The inner felt came off the front speakers on my 92 and I rode in rain, snow and hail, the rear speaker pods have drain holes I wash my bike with a bucket of water and a hose just like I was my car and NEVER had a speaker go out, so i would have to disagree with you when you say they are not water proof/water resistant

Here are Honda rear speakers and their description from Wingstuff.com

15-watt output weatherproof speakers integrate with the standard audio system to offer premium sound quality.
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Thu Dec 17, 2015 1:15 pm

WingAdmin wrote:
Happytrails wrote:Saw a post by someone who installed non-waterresistant/waterproof speakers and he enjoyed his results. Can't imagine getting cause in a rainstorm and looking for a bridge to pull under though. Agree that just swapping speakers is going to give lackluster results. Going to need an amp. Will be cool to watch this thread. I'd like to upgrade my audio too but its difficult because what level do you take it too. You can really throw some cash as a system making it nice.


Some have used non-waterproof speakers, and sprayed the cones with lacquer to seal them, with good results.


As long as you're not getting water down inside the voice coils or across circuitry, you're normally good. High amperage/wattages to a speaker and paper cones do NOT like water, but if you let them dry out you're good as long as it's not a water soluble glue holding things together. But a slight waterproofing (spray, brush or covering) will do wonders for a paper coned speaker without the back being opened to water. Piezo speakers, as long as you don't saturate them, are near indestructible. Let them dry out, and you're good.

A good percentage of speakers out there today are either poly or waterproof coated paper cones. Coated paper is heavy, some plastics can be made both stiffer and lighter than paper, equating to a better sound and less mud in your music. The poly cones (and other exotics available now like Kevlar/carbon fiber) are both waterproof and likely indestructible speakers outside of pysspoor voice coil or the suspension and centering of the cone in the frame.

One of these days I'll revisit a push/pull voice coil I thought up in the middle of the night when I was a kid. Simply a single speaker cone with a double wound voice coil around a longer magnet. One operated as a push, the other as a pull with the polarity of the signal, never letting the speaker cone over-drive one way or the other. The weak point of the whole thing was the paper cones of the middle 70's...they'd destruct cause they couldn't handle the stresses of the precise start/stop of the cone. I'm wondering what would happen with some of today's graphite Kevlar coned jobbies out there, or even the capacities of today's rare earth magnets. Maybe a summer project? ;)

Anyway, work will continue on the speakers Sunday. I have to go pick up another motorcycle in NE Ohio on Saturday. My long 'lost' GS300L Suzuki I resurrected in 2004 is coming home after a 10yr barn stay. 4 miles older than when I sold her. Damn shame it didn't get ridden, but my lil' Suzi is coming home where she belongs.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Sun Dec 20, 2015 3:44 pm

Whew, that was a pain in the asssss. Near 800mi to/from Ohio to pick up the little GS300L Suzuki. Includes a 50mph 300yrs off-road trip down the right side of the median when traffic did a complete scene from ice-capades. Road turned to a solid sheet of ice nearly immediately, and me pulling a 2000lb+ trailer and summer tires...well...that'll eventually buff out of the seat.

Anyway...4x6 speakers. They Are In!. Oh, so much better sound, even being meekly pushed by the stock system. Loads of bass compared to the J&M's. A set of those foam tubs for under them (baffles) and I'll have bass for days. ;) Well, as good as I'll get from a set of 4x6's.

Template shows they'll fit...at least in theory they'll fit. Time to take off a bunch of stuff.


All the stuff comes off to get to them, and using the template/plate they send with it, outline where you want to go.



I ended up taping everything, and redoing the outline. Hard to see marker on plastic, and I didn't like my orientation...trying to get it all without cutting so much dash. After figuring out it needed to go pretty flat across the space, I redid it on the tape...and the tape is really easy to see to 'cut' along the dotted line.


Cut it all out with a dremel, and smooth the edges. Preliminary fit showed I needed to cut out a little bit more to get it to set flush. Easier to cut too little than have to melt it back into place


In place and ready to hit the other side.


Dash fit back with a little interference problem at this screw in the center of the photo. Cut about 1/8" off the post, using a heat gun heating the tab and using the screw to pull it to a 'normal' place. Takes care of the fit issue. Dash fits snug with no rattles from the speaker on full.



Other side finished and installed temporarily. Gotta run new speaker cables back to the left saddlebag. Going to put the amp in there. Don't want to fill up the trunk since I might actually have to put stuff in there for trips. ;)

So, so far, the speakers are in and working. Much better quality sound, bass, treble are where they need to be. Amplification will give it the boost to clean up the need to take it to 3/4 volume to get the best out of it now. Going to try the Pyle Hydra 4ch to start. Since all the wires/cables will already be run in there, and the amp mounted on a plate, changing 'stuff' out won't be that big of a deal. Won't have lots of holes in the bag, only where the cables came in. Everything else will be mounted on the plate.

Seriously considering one of the old school eq/amp's we all used to run in our cars in the late 70's and early 80's. Those things kicked some but, but the old school stuff is $$$ now. Stuff I threw away cause I didn't like it anymore is now going to triple digits on eBay! We'll see...everything in time.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby Happytrails » Sun Dec 20, 2015 5:28 pm

Very nice. You were able to install a baffle behind? Looking forward to seeing your amp install. :D
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Sun Dec 20, 2015 6:09 pm

Happytrails wrote:Very nice. You were able to install a baffle behind? Looking forward to seeing your amp install. :D


Baffles will be here Tuesday per Crutchfield's shipping email.
Speaker wires are being routed into the saddlebag.
Working on the install of the amp as well. Left saddlebag, back in behind the tool kit/owners manual strap on the back. Actually, the strap bracket that attached to the back of the saddlebag is the bottom mounting point. I've got the heavy duty 3M velcro across the top. So far, stable and out of the way. Wiring to commence tomorrow afternoon after a trip to the DMV. Teaser photo below.
Brownie and ice cream, family time in a few minutes. It's time for Die Hard!!!

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby spiralout » Sun Dec 20, 2015 8:00 pm

millerized wrote:
Working on the install of the amp as well. Left saddlebag, back in behind the tool kit/owners manual strap on the back. Actually, the strap bracket that attached to the back of the saddlebag is the bottom mounting point.

I, too, am looking forward to seeing this project completed and would love to hear it in person if I were closer. One thing though, you should consider moving your tool kit to the right side bag. It fits better there. My left bag has a hole and crack in it from the kit being carried there all those years.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Sun Dec 20, 2015 8:41 pm

spiralout wrote:
millerized wrote:
Working on the install of the amp as well. Left saddlebag, back in behind the tool kit/owners manual strap on the back. Actually, the strap bracket that attached to the back of the saddlebag is the bottom mounting point.

I, too, am looking forward to seeing this project completed and would love to hear it in person if I were closer. One thing though, you should consider moving your tool kit to the right side bag. It fits better there. My left bag has a hole and crack in it from the kit being carried there all those years.


I carry a pretty good sized bag of tools for the Concours that will end up in the trunk of the wing. Helps with the wheelies! Just haven't modified it to 'fit' the wing yet (fit as in getting all the tools/parts just right). Probably make a new bag just for it though. Lots of items on the wing that don't fit the connie and vice versa. But, the connie I can nearly change engines with the tools I carry, and if nothing else I could probably do 'something' to it. Haven't noticed any cracks in it yet, although I am noticing 'other' things about this bike that 'show' it's not a new one. Lots of little cracks on the rear inner fender. Wondering if this is normal, or something I should think about replacing when the snow hits.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby kybigmac » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:43 am

I'll try this again, already posted this once and l guess it vanished into thin air :D l want to do something like this and was wondering about getting to the speakers. It looks like the mirrors have to come off to pull the speaker covers, are there any other tricks to getting to the speakers. Thx for any advice.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:48 am

kybigmac wrote:I'll try this again, already posted this once and l guess it vanished into thin air :D l want to do something like this and was wondering about getting to the speakers. It looks like the mirrors have to come off to pull the speaker covers, are there any other tricks to getting to the speakers. Thx for any advice.


Follow the same procedures at this link down to the dash cover coming off (step 19). At that point, speakers are right there and ready.
viewtopic.php?f=14&t=10998

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Dec 21, 2015 11:39 am

millerized wrote:
Happytrails wrote:Very nice. You were able to install a baffle behind? Looking forward to seeing your amp install. :D


Baffles will be here Tuesday per Crutchfield's shipping email.
Speaker wires are being routed into the saddlebag.
Working on the install of the amp as well. Left saddlebag, back in behind the tool kit/owners manual strap on the back. Actually, the strap bracket that attached to the back of the saddlebag is the bottom mounting point. I've got the heavy duty 3M velcro across the top. So far, stable and out of the way. Wiring to commence tomorrow afternoon after a trip to the DMV. Teaser photo below.
Brownie and ice cream, family time in a few minutes. It's time for Die Hard!!!


I see you have your Big Larry light in there! Aren't they great? I just used one for hours on the weekend while wrestling an induction motor and fan out of a furnace.

I would suggest making the amp connections into just one or two quick-disconnect connectors on the OUTSIDE of the bag, to make it easy to remove the bag for servicing the rear wheel. I originally had used individual male/female spade connectors for the stuff in my bags, but that became such a pain to disconnect, then match up and reconnect that I scrapped all of them and switched to a 6-place Hitachi style connector (same as used in the OEM connectors throughout the bike). One connector to quickly disconnect and the bag comes free.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby WingAdmin » Mon Dec 21, 2015 11:44 am

spiralout wrote:
millerized wrote:
Working on the install of the amp as well. Left saddlebag, back in behind the tool kit/owners manual strap on the back. Actually, the strap bracket that attached to the back of the saddlebag is the bottom mounting point.

I, too, am looking forward to seeing this project completed and would love to hear it in person if I were closer. One thing though, you should consider moving your tool kit to the right side bag. It fits better there. My left bag has a hole and crack in it from the kit being carried there all those years.


This is a good point. The tool kit has a slot in it that fits correctly when it is installed in its original position inside the right bag. For reasons unknown, Honda relocated the toolkit in later models to the left bag - but did not redesign the tool kit, so it does not fit correctly, causing undue pressure on the ABS of the bag when it is installed. Eventually it will cause the bag to crack.

Relocating it back to the correct place on the right side will prevent this from occurring.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Mon Dec 21, 2015 2:27 pm

WingAdmin wrote:I would suggest making the amp connections into just one or two quick-disconnect connectors on the OUTSIDE of the bag, to make it easy to remove the bag for servicing the rear wheel. I originally had used individual male/female spade connectors for the stuff in my bags, but that became such a pain to disconnect, then match up and reconnect that I scrapped all of them and switched to a 6-place Hitachi style connector (same as used in the OEM connectors throughout the bike). One connector to quickly disconnect and the bag comes free.

Way ahead of ya ;) One 4 pin for the front speakers, one 4 pin for the back speakers and one 3 pin for the power/ground/remote wire.
But thanks for reminding me I had them...I was going to install it anyway...eventually...when I remembered them a few weeks after I installed it :oops: But this helps if/when I swap amps in the future.


Now I gotta go find my wire loom.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:33 pm

Well, couldn't find the wire loom, had to do it ol' school...tape wrap.

Speakers have wired TO them, and those wires are connected to the amplifier. When the speaker connectors come in tomorrow (with the baffles) we'll tie everything back together.

Going to try an MP3 player straight to the amp before I pull the stock speaker wires back through to the amp. I'm going with the line in setup until I decide to go with a RCA input from a different head in the future.

Since no good deed goes unpowered, I went ahead and installed a much better power plate than the spaghetti that was in prior. Blue Sea Systems (from Amazon) is some seriously good stuff. Very heavy base, and the fuse connectors are very solid. You won't have a fuse vibrate out on this thing. They make several versions, I stuck with the simple 6 fuse. Simple aluminum plate riveted to the battery stay, folds out of the way when you need to remove the battery.



OK, quick disconnects are in as well.. Just outside the bag beside the shock and air compressor. One for the rear speakers, one for the front, and one for the power.


Amp is wired, and waiting on speaker connectors. Yes, I could use regular female spade connectors, but they don't hold as well. The ones I have have to be crimped and then still don't hold to my liking. http://www.crutchfield.com/p_120FQS10PK ... ml?tp=2610 is the 'right' stuff, and since I don't plan on taking the dash off again anytime soon (unless someone poops a cheap set of 4x6 Polks in my lap), right is right now. Will clean up the wiring a bit and wrap with some tape/ties to keep it out of the way. So far, so good.

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby Happytrails » Tue Dec 22, 2015 6:07 am

Nice install. Did you use a common ground location someplace? And your using iSimple to bluetooth back to the bike to play your favorite music? :D
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Tue Dec 22, 2015 3:22 pm

Happytrails wrote:Nice install. Did you use a common ground location someplace? And your using iSimple to bluetooth back to the bike to play your favorite music? :D

Battery post. I'm of the opinion that audio has to go back to the source, no matter how long the cable needed to be. No loops if there are no loops.

iSimple FM modulator for the Sirius audio out. The 3.5mm jack is in the left front pocket. I can plug in anything with a 3.5mm jack and roll with it.

I have sound. UPS will probably be late, and I wanted to see if there is any sound coming out of what I have installed so far. 2 inputs into the amp, and I have all 4 speakers rolling. Enough sound at rest to know this isn't a stock system. Relatively solid bass, ear splitting highs, definitely more sound than previous and head and shoulders above the J&M speakers that were in there.

I'm guessing by looking at this thing, it does NOT have a true 4 channel output. Front 2 channels only, with them split and feeding/fading to the back. I'm going to have to go look at the wiring diagrams for the stereo, but it's not looking good for using a 4 channel amp when 2 channel is all it needs. Of course, using bike wiring (Speaker Level Input - SLI) as an audio input to an amp isn't the best either, but changing that will require a SLI to RCA converter or a new head unit. Right now I'm using the speaker level inputs, and it's not liking being double fed. Going to recheck my wiring, but not really too happy with the results so far.

Crap...yeah, it's a 2 channel out. Front/Rear 'fader' just splits it to 2 left front and 2 right front. 2 channels.

For me to get a true 4 channel out, I'm going to need a different head unit. :| More than I wanted to get into, but possibilities are possibilities until they're either tossed out or made into realities. We'll see where reality ends up.

That said, it's still head and shoulders above where it was. No engine noise. Can't wait to see where the automatic level control takes it on a ride. Sweet!!! so far!

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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby Happytrails » Tue Dec 22, 2015 5:56 pm

Any chance of figuring out where the pre-amp wires are and bypassing the OEM radio amp?
1991 GL1500 SE Anniversary Edition
Sun Flare Gold Metallic
Vallant Brown Inset

millerized
Posts: 170
Joined: Tue Oct 27, 2015 6:33 am
Location: Inwood, WV
Motorcycle: 99 GL1500SE
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Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby millerized » Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:58 pm

Happytrails wrote:Any chance of figuring out where the pre-amp wires are and bypassing the OEM radio amp?


It's on the schematic for the radio, but I'm going to stop here. I'm good, but I'm not going to pop open the radio and play with 16+ year old circuits. Just not in my best interest right now.
The radio works, the tape works, the Sirius works.
The option for any type of signal coming out of a 3.5mm stereo jack is there. (iPod, cell, mp3 player)
I'll replace the radio if it gets to where I need more than what I have.

Now, somehow, I've got a high pitched whine coming from the HID's. Wasn't there before, straight through the speakers without the radio even on. I must have knocked a ground off somewhere. Luckily, it's very slight and you can't hear it with the radio on. Still, it'll be addressed.

Looks like tomorrow is a short ride to work on my day off. Lots of paperwork piling up, and while I love being on vacation, some stuff just needs done. At least I don't have to dress up to go take care of it.

raygald
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2012 9:06 pm
Location: Canada
Motorcycle: 2004 GL1800A

Re: 4"x6" speakers in the dash?

Postby raygald » Fri Jan 01, 2016 1:56 pm

Does someone have replaced OEM front speaker for GL1800 (2001-2005) for a better sound? I know that latest GL1800 has 2-way front speakers playing better than former Wings. Thanks for your ideas.




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