I give in. I'll get a head unit. Wanna help?

Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
If you haven't seen me around here yet I am a motivated and eager to learn idiot. I will get some terms wrong, promise. I am very overwhelemed by the process of upgrading my system in my 2018 Toyota Corolla. I have a thread where some very cool people have helped me but I think I need to dumb it down.

Originally I wanted to keep the interior look of my car by not changing the head unit. After a 2 hour drive yesterday I realized my HU doesn't really do much. THEN I realized that you can get a head unit that does sound staging (wrong term?) things like 12 band EQ, time alignment, and crossover. PLUS my car doesn't interact with my phone almost at all. Android Auto looks pretty cool for that.

So I can save a step by not buying a signal processor, I wont have to flatten the stock radio signal, and I get a significantly better UI? Why didn't anyone tell me I was being dumb? Lol

Am I on the right track? That I can have all that in the head unit?

What models do you recommend? Which ones don't lag, have good controls for audio, and have a nice resolution? I can sacrifice power. I am not looking to be a loud car. My stock HU gets almost loud enough. An upgrade to 40 or 50 watts (seems to be the norm for the ones I have seen) should be plenty.

Goals: Again, motivated noob, bear with me.

Ability to dial in EQ, time, and whatever else to make a system with updraded woofers, tweets, and an undetermined sub (will have it's own power of course) be used to it's potential, within reason. If I can save money on a processor I am willing to spend more on the HU.

I appreciate all the help I can get. I am no stranger to forums, I will post a build log once I know what the hell I am doing.

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
Here is what I am working with.

0412190950.jpg

0412190951.jpg

0412190952a.jpg

The corolla has a larger face than double DIN. I would love a large high res screen to fit in the space. The larger the screen the less of an ugly mounting ring I will have to put in. Could be up to an inch on either side if I use a standard double DIN. I haven't found a lot of double DINs with faces larger than the back. Probably not a common thing?

This HU seems to have good reviews and says it has just about everything I ask for. Time, EQ, Android etc. Worth taking a look at? Kenwood Excelon DNX694S

https://www.crutchfield.com/p_113DNX694S/Kenwood-Excelon-DNX694S.html?cc=07&tp=72381

 

phantom240

ALL YOUR INTERNETZ
Aug 8, 2005
6,067
12
Southeast Louisiana
As someone who has plenty of Kenwood HU's, I'd advise you not to go with the DNX694. Kenwood units always seem to be buggy as hell in my experience. 

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
I was curious as to what you all thought about the brands. I appreciate the replies. I will take a look a the NEX EX Jeff. I will build my setup based on that. 

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
forgot my comma, EX or NEX 
Jeff, you had a Rolla. Do I need to be concerned about the electrical system of the vehicle when adding a sub? Will a 500w sub amp draw too mcu power from the alternator? I don't plan on using battery power only for audio.

At what point do I need to start thinking about that?

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,261
252
South Coast Metro, CA
Jeff, you had a Rolla. Do I need to be concerned about the electrical system of the vehicle when adding a sub? Will a 500w sub amp draw too mcu power from the alternator? I don't plan on using battery power only for audio.

At what point do I need to start thinking about that?
500 watts plus a 4 channel is nothing. Just do the big 3 upgrade. Best thing to do is add a voltage meter with pos and neg connected to your sub amo and you can monitor voltages.  If its under 12.5 you'll want to swap to an agm battery under the hood. Most likely youll still be above 13 volts easy.

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
500 watts plus a 4 channel is nothing. Just do the big 3 upgrade. Best thing to do is add a voltage meter with pos and neg connected to your sub amo and you can monitor voltages.  If its under 12.5 you'll want to swap to an agm battery under the hood. Most likely youll still be above 13 volts easy.
Nice. I will go into my local shop to try out the individual models of pioneer and make a decision. I am sure I will find more questions about subs lol. I appreciate the help.

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
Played with a few models and think I have decided on the Pioneer DMH-C2500NEX. There are some cooler HUs that I was with 9" screens and stuff but the price is almost double... Way too much for the "cool factor".

While I was at one of the shops I had them tell me what they thought. One shop recommended the AudioControl ACM 1.300 amp to go with the Rockford Fosgate p2 12 sub I was looking at. Anyone see any red flags here? I was gonna do the 15" but I would need almost double the space for a good ported enclosure. RF makes a tuned ported enclosure for the 12". Sounds logical to me.... Am I taking the bait?

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,261
252
South Coast Metro, CA
Played with a few models and think I have decided on the Pioneer DMH-C2500NEX. There are some cooler HUs that I was with 9" screens and stuff but the price is almost double... Way too much for the "cool factor".

While I was at one of the shops I had them tell me what they thought. One shop recommended the AudioControl ACM 1.300 amp to go with the Rockford Fosgate p2 12 sub I was looking at. Anyone see any red flags here? I was gonna do the 15" but I would need almost double the space for a good ported enclosure. RF makes a tuned ported enclosure for the 12". Sounds logical to me.... Am I taking the bait?
junk mediocre recommendations literally overpaying out the @ss for not much value at all.    If you are getting a sub in a box, skip anything RF or any pre-made box, it'll be complete sh*t unless you do a 15 in a sealed which will be acceptable for SQ.    

Dayton HO 12 works very well for very good sound quality and gets loud if needed.

https://www.parts-express.com/dayton-audio-rss315ho-44-12-reference-ho-dvc-subwoofer--295-467

This amp will be fine to power the dayton, plus if you ever want to add another or change sub setups in the future, you literally are future proof. The amp is tried and tested on the amp dyno to be a good performer and efficiency as fk.   If you are worred about electrical, install a voltage meter and turn up the gain till you only drop to 12.6 to 12.8 volts and you are in the clear, there's no need to worry if you vehicle can handle it, you literally just set the amp to what your vehicle currently handles.

https://www.amazon.com/Taramp-HD3000-1-Stable-Channel-Amplifier/dp/B00FGULS78

 
OP
Q

Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
junk mediocre recommendations literally overpaying out the @ss for not much value at all.    If you are getting a sub in a box, skip anything RF or any pre-made box, it'll be complete sh*t unless you do a 15 in a sealed which will be acceptable for SQ.    

Dayton HO 12 works very well for very good sound quality and gets loud if needed.

https://www.parts-express.com/dayton-audio-rss315ho-44-12-reference-ho-dvc-subwoofer--295-467

This amp will be fine to power the dayton, plus if you ever want to add another or change sub setups in the future, you literally are future proof. The amp is tried and tested on the amp dyno to be a good performer and efficiency as fk.   If you are worred about electrical, install a voltage meter and turn up the gain till you only drop to 12.6 to 12.8 volts and you are in the clear, there's no need to worry if you vehicle can handle it, you literally just set the amp to what your vehicle currently handles.

https://www.amazon.com/Taramp-HD3000-1-Stable-Channel-Amplifier/dp/B00FGULS78
So the sub has an RMS of 700w shouldn't the amp be rated similarly? I love the idea lf a cheaper amp that has a good reputation though.

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,261
252
South Coast Metro, CA
So the sub has an RMS of 700w shouldn't the amp be rated similarly? I love the idea lf a cheaper amp that has a good reputation though.
no you dont match the RMS of the amp to the sub, you always have way more power than you ever need to keep the signal clean, amp running smooth and efficient barely lifting a finger to power your subs.  Just because you have 3000 doesnt mean you need to use all of it, you literally set how much power you want the amp to output via gain settings and with a voltage meter you can see whats a safe level for your vehicle as well.  Vs having an amp being red lined all the time struggling to feed the sub. which one do you think has a cleaner signal, runs cooler and lives longer?

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
no you dont match the RMS of the amp to the sub, you always have way more power than you ever need to keep the signal clean, amp running smooth and efficient barely lifting a finger to power your subs.  Just because you have 3000 doesnt mean you need to use all of it, you literally set how much power you want the amp to output via gain settings and with a voltage meter you can see whats a safe level for your vehicle as well.  Vs having an amp being red lined all the time struggling to feed the sub. which one do you think has a cleaner signal, runs cooler and lives longer?
I asked that exact question at one of the shops today, if it would be worth getting a more powerful amp to make sure it was always running on less than full power in the interest of cooling and longevity. They looked at me like I was nuts.

If you think the Dayton is the way to go I will take a look at it. Best place to get a box? I am a woodworker but not sure if I can quite get exact enough to meet these needs.

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,261
252
South Coast Metro, CA
I asked that exact question at one of the shops today, if it would be worth getting a more powerful amp to make sure it was always running on less than full power in the interest of cooling and longevity. They looked at me like I was nuts.

If you think the Dayton is the way to go I will take a look at it. Best place to get a box? I am a woodworker but not sure if I can quite get exact enough to meet these needs.
If you are a wood worker, definitely build your own box lol. @shredder2 can hook you up with a design thats easy to follow.   The dayton is best bet for sound quality under 300$ range.    if you want loud boom spl, it'll be another woofer. 

Definitely avoid those shops. they sound like they have no idea about anything car audio other than selling to you and making a profit.

 
OP
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
If you are a wood worker, definitely build your own box lol. @shredder2 can hook you up with a design thats easy to follow.   The dayton is best bet for sound quality under 300$ range.    if you want loud boom spl, it'll be another woofer. 

Definitely avoid those shops. they sound like they have no idea about anything car audio other than selling to you and making a profit.
I think you sold me. More power than I need but that is a good thing really.

Is there a need to have a shop hook this all up for me? I am a DIY guy but have been so overwhelmed with research I never even thought about it. 

How hard is getting steering wheel controls and such to play nice? Worth the 120 they wanna charge me for the HU install?

 

Jeffdachef

Gunz That Turn on Nunz
Feb 5, 2013
17,261
252
South Coast Metro, CA
I think you sold me. More power than I need but that is a good thing really.

Is there a need to have a shop hook this all up for me? I am a DIY guy but have been so overwhelmed with research I never even thought about it. 

How hard is getting steering wheel controls and such to play nice? Worth the 120 they wanna charge me for the HU install?
If you buy the head unit on crutchfield or sonicelectronix they include the dash kit, wiring harness and the steering wheel adapter for a discount.  The steering wheel adapter is easy to figure out and  you can always call their customer support team to walk you through the installation.  Your amps and wiring are all a lot easier than you expect.  For wiring i'd actually recommend running underneath the car if your corolla doesnt have a convenient fire wall location.  You dont really need a shop to do any of this plus you know exactly whats been done vs a possible shoddy install where they might cut corners especially if they cut the stock harness which is an absolute nightmare.

 
OP
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
If you buy the head unit on crutchfield or sonicelectronix they include the dash kit, wiring harness and the steering wheel adapter for a discount.  The steering wheel adapter is easy to figure out and  you can always call their customer support team to walk you through the installation.  Your amps and wiring are all a lot easier than you expect.  For wiring i'd actually recommend running underneath the car if your corolla doesnt have a convenient fire wall location.  You dont really need a shop to do any of this plus you know exactly whats been done vs a possible shoddy install where they might cut corners especially if they cut the stock harness which is an absolute nightmare.
Guess I gotta put my big boy pants on and figure this out! I appreciate all your help. I'm sure I have been a pain!

 
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Quartersawn

CarAudio.com Enthusiast
Mar 30, 2019
49
2
Bought the HU and goodies to go with it. I am going to try my hand at installing it myself. It has been years since I have done any soldering so I chickened out and got the harness service Crutchfield offers. It was 25 bucks and it would cost me more than that to get a decent iron. Heres what I bought. Once it comes in I will start a thread in the install and wiring section if y'all wanna follow along while I fumble around.

Screenshot_2019-04-16-17-24-01.png

 

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