How good is the sound in the GP? - Page 2 - North American Motoring


How good is the sound in the GP?

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  #26  
Old 10-06-2014, 07:36 PM
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akng akng is offline
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Originally Posted by JCW_Coupe View Post

well I have the Alpine kit in my GP and the Integral Audio Rear Sub kit sounds nice but not a lot of volume out of the alpines...
Did you get the alpine kit installed at the dealer and was it a difficult job for them? I heard they would have to pull a lot of new wires. Please advise. Thanks.
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  #27  
Old 10-06-2014, 08:21 PM
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Originally Posted by akng View Post
Did you get the alpine kit installed at the dealer and was it a difficult job for them? I heard they would have to pull a lot of new wires. Please advise. Thanks.
nope, did the alpine and the IA install myself its not for the faint of heart...ill say that but feel free to ask q's
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  #28  
Old 10-06-2014, 08:57 PM
keen keen is offline
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Originally Posted by Drivehard View Post
Wait. Let me get this. And I'm a racer. Die hard car guy. Track rat etc etc etc.........

You guys are discussing the audio quality of a car offered by an OEM to be a bare bones no rear seat no sound insulation rough riding near close to track only use car ?
I think you may be confusing the GP2 with the GP.

The GP2 isn't loud, doesn't have reduced sound insulation, isn't (super) stiff or rough, and most definitely isn't a track car (certainly the brakes arent. great on the street, but they dont cool enough from what I've read)

(regardless of how they advertise it. yes, it's stiffer than the base/sport/jcw suspensions, and yes it's missing a back seat....but honestly the other 3 suspension options are just too damn soft already. the GP2 suspension is much closer to the stock sport suspension on the R53...actually a bit less harsh)


Quote:
Really the radio. That's what the issue is.

I don't get it. Just me. Sorry carry on.
if you're not a music person, that's cool. not everyone is. but (when I'm commuting) I spend 1-2 hours a day in the car. It's the best time to listen to tunes. And I want them to sound good.



but what do I know - i bought a GP2 because it had auto AC. -none- (ok, very very few. and those were flat leather) of the new or used '13 JCWs I could find did. ok, I didnt realize it was sans rear wiper. that's a stupid delete down here in florida...
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  #29  
Old 02-29-2016, 08:28 AM
Matty33 Matty33 is offline
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Sorry to bring this back from the dead but just wanted to get thoughts on the sound options for the GP2 now that those who've installed it have had plenty of time with them.

Still worth the cost?

Looks like either the Alpine or the Integral audio are the only 2 real 'easy' options for this upgrade? My commute is a little longer now and starting to miss having good tunes..or will once the GP comes out of storage!
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  #30  
Old 02-29-2016, 09:24 AM
keen keen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matty33 View Post
Sorry to bring this back from the dead but just wanted to get thoughts on the sound options for the GP2 now that those who've installed it have had plenty of time with them.

Still worth the cost?

Looks like either the Alpine or the Integral audio are the only 2 real 'easy' options for this upgrade? My commute is a little longer now and starting to miss having good tunes..or will once the GP comes out of storage!

So the short answer:

The GP2 is uniquely wired/programmed. At the time, IA wasn't aware of this...I know they are now, and I'm not sure what solutions they are offering.

The challenge with any non-GP2 specific stereo upgrade:

The X9331 harness is not wired the same as any other mini, and the headunit crossover programming is unique (which feeds signal to this wiring).

If you dig through the coding for the car, you'll find the following configuration:

RAD22_VEHICLE_FILTERS
r56_gp2_stereo
RAD22_CROSSOVER_B
r56_gp2_stereo


With the tools I had at that time (no ethernet based coding tools), I couldn't talk to RAD to write changes - this -might- still be possible to switch this to the hifi or base stereo coding, but.


So the result of this is that the "front" and "rear" pinout in the X9331 harness are actually "high" and "midbass" crossover outputs - the two speakers in the door actually get electronic crossovers applied, and both the front/rear wiring feed into the door.

The -rest- of the mini's only get the "front" wiring sent to the door - and this is (from memory here) full range (unfiltered, or limited filtering). Crossovers are at the speakers. The "rear" wiring (in some configurations) is filtered - low frequencies are removed if I recall. There's lots of discussion about these details for the non-GP cars.



So, back to the GP:

This means you have two heavily filtered signals to try to get full range audio from. This is starting to get more and more common (I recall Kevin mentioning he'd just discovered a similar case in a recent BMW he was working on at the time), so solutions may be getting better.


For me, with the IA soundstage, I had to do the following:

Use a custom X9331 harness that I modified to change the pin configuration so I could capture and route speaker level signal from all 4 speakers to the rear of the car, and feed new input into the correct speaker line in the door to feed the IA crossovers.


Use a DSP to re-combine the two filtered sets of audio into a single signal. I'm using a Rockford Fosgate 3SIXTY.3 - but you can potentially get away with a cheaper non-programmable signal combiner. (JL Audio Cleansweep comes to mind)

The straight filtered result isn't really a complete signal yet - going from memory without looking at my signal graphs - the high end still rolls off, the middle has a valley, and it's rolled off at the low end. Because the GP speakers are such absolute crap, they had to filter the highs and the lows.


So next, I used the 360 to reshape the signal curve - which was a very long and time consuming process of measuring/changing/listening/rince/repeat. I'm an amature, so my measurement rig is far from a mockup of the human ear. As Kevin frequently reminded me.

Eventually I got an "input" signal I was happy with, and split that into 3 output channels - front LR and subwoofer mono. Fed that into the IA amp, adjusted gains, and am mostly happy.


This setup - and indeed any amp installation - WILL require a NCSExpert coding change - the "chime" sounds are configured to use the stereo, and at a fixed output volume. (well, it's minimally configurable, but not enough). As soon as you start amplifying your chime signal.....it's unbearably loud. You have to make a coding change to switch the sound to use the speaker built into the gauge cluster.

"KOMBI - HU_VERBAUT from radiostufe_3_4 to radiostufe_2 - door gong in console instead of stereo"



Also, on adjusting gains - the stock headunit is both extremely noisy AND clips heavily. AND has zero volume level indication. Even counting clicks from turnon volume is not reliable. So finding the balance between a gain increase that gives you the volume you want, and not picking up increasing the noise level (alternator whine primarily), and still being able to turn up the volume without clipping, is a challenge.



My opinion now:

Install a single DIN headunit (or other audio source - there are many for the marine and classic car markets) somewhere. Something with a remote display and control that you can stick somewhere.


Use that to supply audio to your amp, speakers, and sub. Use a modified X9331 harness to avoid having to cut up the factory wiring. Use the IA kit if you prefer, since it comes with a matched set of speakers and A pillars and an amp that fits in place - or assemble your own drivers/parts/crossovers/amps..)


There's also now an aftermarket KOMBI+RAD cluster/headunit from china that I've seen - it's a bit pricy, and I know zero about it. Maybe it provides a decent full signal? It might not match the GP interior, and it definitely violates my idea of a mini speedometer...but.


There's also the center stack trim replacement that shifts things down and around to put a single DIN in the stack.




Was it worth it to me? YES.

Would I do it again, knowing what I know now? Probably not - I'd buy a '13 JCW and put the GP or similar coilovers on it. But since I already have the GP...it definitely needed fixing.

And yes, that's the short answer.
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  #31  
Old 02-29-2016, 09:42 AM
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funny i have both the alpine and the sub from IA and no issues, must be issues with the soundstage speakers.
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  #32  
Old 02-29-2016, 09:59 AM
keen keen is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCW_Coupe View Post
funny i have both the alpine and the sub from IA and no issues, must be issues with the soundstage speakers.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JCW_Coupe View Post
well I have the Alpine kit in my GP and the Integral Audio Rear Sub kit sounds nice but not a lot of volume out of the alpines...

Or it sounds OK enough to you.


Actually, with the alpines (no additional amp, simply swap the 4 speakers?), you'd probably see an improvement over stock - though no increase in power or volume.

The IA sub with the standard harness will work, too - and if you're not looking for it, you might not notice the difference. But the signal it's working with has a significant power drop at the frequencies you want the sub to receive - AND it rolls off (power drops more) as they get lower. So it's ~ok for the low end of the midbass realm with enough amp gain, but if you want the low stuff you're very much missing it.

For the sub only, the quick fix is to pull signal from the other set of pins (the bottom door speakers).


Audio is very much a subjective subject - what sounds like an excellent improvement, to one person might not at all be what someone else is looking for. The type of music/audio you listen to can contribute to this heavily as well.
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  #33  
Old 02-29-2016, 10:03 AM
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JCW_Coupe JCW_Coupe is offline
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Originally Posted by keen View Post
Or it sounds OK enough to you.
I saw an improvement over the stock speaker minus the volume level in the side speakers. they sound clearer and the sub thumps plenty for my use, of course it could have more, we always want more. but your detective work on the pinout is intriguing, never noticed that on the GP2 before
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  #34  
Old 02-29-2016, 10:04 AM
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and i am running both amps, alpine and IA.
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  #35  
Old 02-29-2016, 11:19 AM
Matty33 Matty33 is offline
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Wow great insight, appreciate all the info and very detailed responses!

I had thought of just replacing the factory speakers and seeing how much better that made things. I don't crank it up overly loud so not too concerned over volume just sound quality.

For comparison I loved the hk system in my last mini, which I know many don't find so great, so my ears must not be too specific
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