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What I have learned from all the great posts in Mazda3revolution forums have saved me many headaches. I have an upgraded audio system that is a bit different from what I have seen so I want to share--maybe give people ideas for their upgrades.

I wanted to get a tight musical sound. I don't care about pure volume. I also wanted to have the entire hatch available so I can put both of my bikes inside the car. AND I wanted to keep full use of the OEM integrated system(bluetooth, blind-spot monitoring, steering wheel controls, etc)

I originally wanted Audiocontrol to bridge the OEM system to my aftermarket upgrades. But my installer sold me on an Audison Bit One processor.

So OEM to Bit One, to Audison Voce 4 channel amp, to a pair of Dynaudio front components(hidden under the bose grills), and a 12 inch Audison Voce sub in a sealed box in back.

Bose amp REMOVED from the car, center speaker unplugged, and rear speakers unplugged.
Pictures and details to follow
 

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Notice there is no Bose amp under the passenger front seat--just the massive Dynaudio crossovers and the Audison Bit One Processor. Before my installer handed it to me, I thought it was necessary to keep it with all aftermarket upgrades. At least not with this Audison Bit One.
 

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This is the Audison Bit One controller It can be put anywhere. This is where hand rests most comfortably. I adjust the volume often. You can adjust volume, fade, balance, sub, and up to 6 preset customized EQ's(less clicking than the mazda's controls). It has a auto power cut-off and auto start function so it doesn't drain the battery.
 

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This is the massive Audison Voce 4 channel amp-behind the equally massive sealed 12 inch sub(30 lbs!). The sub is not bolted down(for portability) The net works perfect--a was very convenient(it was already there!)
 

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I did not want to sacrifice storage. The Voce amp is a massive AB amp--but it is relatively thin. When the Sub is taken out, I have nearly all of my hatch storage! It looks pretty crisp there as well.
 

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I like this solution and it is really clean. You basically have turned the Bose system into an old line 2.1 system. You lose the surround effect but gain clarity and balance. I don't quite understand how he gets a full signal, however as none of the lines in the Bose system has a full signal to my knowledge. You also lose pressure but if you're not playing your system really loud, you don't need it. The AudioControl DSP, which I assume could also be used, actually recombines the signal. I saw by your pictures, that yours is not recombined.

Given what you've taught us, an ultimate system could be built by using the high end AudioControl DSP with a 6 channel amp and a separate amp for the sub essentially making it a 5.1 / 7 speaker system. Of course, all of the speakers would have to be replaced.

So how much did all of this cost? My upgrades of a sub, tweeters, LOC's and amps ran about $260 but is really a kludge and not very clean. It took a lot of effort to tune the system and it's much better than stock, but not perfect. My sub is small so I don't have to remove it and it includes the amp. It's only about 3" thick vs. using a box. I don't have any external controls except for a sub volume knob I installed under the driver seat so I could reach down and control it while driving if needed but you can't see it.

Certainly, yours is the more elegant solution and tuning is rather easy, but I'm not sure I'd be willing to give up on the full factory control and "surround" effects -- or for that matter, the space. When my hatch is full, I still have my sub working.
 

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What did you use for a tuner? Were you able to somehow decouple the FM/AM/XM/HD tuners from the TAU and use them, or does the Bit One have tuners built in? Great system though. I would only take it one step further and wire a custom microcontroller that can read the steering wheel control data packets to change tracks / stations and adjust volume without having to use the BitOne's controller (and hide it in the glovebox or something, only using it when I want to change EQ or whatever).
 

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I agree about the pressure. I am sure that my top end volume is not as high as it could be. That said, It still goes louder than I want to listen to it. The sub is set up to play musically--not to rattle apartment windows as I drive by. So that works out ok for me.

The sub actually works ok when I put it behind the front passenger seat. It has about 1.5 inches of space between the speaker and the back of the seat. The installer gave it just enough cable to fit neatly in both areas. Of course I actually have to move the darn thing to that space when I need all of the hatch room. Your solution setup makes life easier. I was considering getting a pioneer sub that is super thin like yours and I wouldn't have had to move it.

If I find any faults with my system, one of them is way more sub than I need.

I original limit was 2k. I did a lot of listening to different systems. When I actually heard the dynaudios in my installer's own car, I just had to have them. When I committed to the Dynaudios, I decided to go to 3k. The Dynaudios are expensive to begin with. Further, they need high quality power, so you have to have a better amp.
 

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What did you use for a tuner? Were you able to somehow decouple the FM/AM/XM/HD tuners from the TAU and use them, or does the Bit One have tuners built in? Great system though. I would only take it one step further and wire a custom microcontroller that can read the steering wheel control data packets to change tracks / stations and adjust volume without having to use the BitOne's controller (and hide it in the glovebox or something, only using it when I want to change EQ or whatever).
Oh yeah. I have full use of all the OEM controls-including the steering wheel controls. I only use the bit one controller for volume and to play with the sub level.
 

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wifi and bluetooth also work. Of course bluetooth just has poorer sound quality due to the compression. Unfortunately as you upgrade your sound, the flaws stand out more. So that is another inevitable downside. My usual source is a Fiio 3X portable DAP though the AUX input. I have 64 gig of music in large format on it. It has a built in DAC as well. So my source is great. When you upgrade audio you always think of weakest link in the chain. If you have crappy compressed music files or only play bluetooth.. The Mazda bluetooth integration with my iPhone is so so cool and convenient though...
 

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I agree about the pressure. I am sure that my top end volume is not as high as it could be. That said, It still goes louder than I want to listen to it. The sub is set up to play musically--not to rattle apartment windows as I drive by. So that works out ok for me.

The sub actually works ok when I put it behind the front passenger seat. It has about 1.5 inches of space between the speaker and the back of the seat. The installer gave it just enough cable to fit neatly in both areas. Of course I actually have to move the darn thing to that space when I need all of the hatch room. Your solution setup makes life easier. I was considering getting a pioneer sub that is super thin like yours and I wouldn't have had to move it.

If I find any faults with my system, one of them is way more sub than I need.

I original limit was 2k. I did a lot of listening to different systems. When I actually heard the dynaudios in my installer's own car, I just had to have them. When I committed to the Dynaudios, I decided to go to 3k. The Dynaudios are expensive to begin with. Further, they need high quality power, so you have to have a better amp.
Yes, I'm sure the quality of your system is better than mine. But I've been doing this for decades and doing the installations myself as I seem to do a better job than most installers (although it takes me twice as long). But after my last $3K system, I decided not to do that again. If your car is standing still in a parking lot with the motor off, there is a huge difference. However, when you're cruising down the highway, the difference is a lot less -- and this is not a quiet car. Since I rarely listen to the car audio when I'm parked, the cost difference between $260 and $3,000 is just not worth it to me. I used to have a BMW 7 series which was ultra quiet, and I did put a very high end system in that.

My current modified system sounds close to one of the $2K systems I had, so I'm a fairly happy camper. That said, I have learned a lot about this system. When I started, I thought it would sound better if I favored the rear speakers for a better surround type sound. But since I've learned the rear speakers are mono, I've now favored the fronts and have much better separation. I listen to a lot of XM radio and some BT. The quality on those channels is not that good, so again, a higher end system would be a waste for me.

Of all of the solutions so far, including mine, I think you've got the best bones. Regarding compact subs, they are pretty good these days and do reach the very low frequencies. You're not going to get the sound pressure of 2 12" boxes, but if you're after quality, you don't need it.
 

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What did you use for a tuner? Were you able to somehow decouple the FM/AM/XM/HD tuners from the TAU and use them, or does the Bit One have tuners built in? Great system though. I would only take it one step further and wire a custom microcontroller that can read the steering wheel control data packets to change tracks / stations and adjust volume without having to use the BitOne's controller (and hide it in the glovebox or something, only using it when I want to change EQ or whatever).
There are three components to the Bose system -- the head unit, the TAU, and a separate amp. The TAU is located in the passenger footwell and the separate amp is under the passenger seat. So he picked up the signals after the TAU which means the Tuner is still intact. Since you control volume from the amp, he needs to control that from the Bit One controller. The only issue I can see from this setup in addition to using separate controls, is that it may not pick up the whole signal. It probably misses the very highs and very lows because Bose has bass fall-off programmed and if you tap the mid-high speakers, the twinkle tones are also weak. But you will get strong mid-bass and good regular treble so orchestral sounds will be great. It's when you get into harmonics that the very highs and very lows play a more important role.
 

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Thanks @rvoll. I knew the TAU included an amp, I didn't realize that the bose system added a secondary amp (I thought that tech was in the TAU). That explains why all the controls and volume still works with his setup.

Even cooler construction of the CMU <-> TAU <-> Amp than I thought. Makes it easier than a lot of newer cars to switch out parts of the system.
 

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Thanks @rvoll. I knew the TAU included an amp, I didn't realize that the bose system added a secondary amp (I thought that tech was in the TAU). That explains why all the controls and volume still works with his setup.

Even cooler construction of the CMU <-> TAU <-> Amp than I thought. Makes it easier than a lot of newer cars to switch out parts of the system.
I don't know what amplifier functions are in the TAU. All of the speakers output through the regular amp under the passenger's seat. I'm thinking it may be the equalizer stuff for Centerpoint and Audiopilot. However, the DSP defeats those systems in his setup. I'm still unclear which speaker leads were tapped. It can't be the rears, as they are mono. It can't be either the woofers or mid-high dash because neither of those is full range. The AudioControl DSP unit will recombine both of those, but I don't see that function in his unit nor do I see the leads attached. He only has a 4 channel amp so that is the two front and bridged output for the sub. It is possible that full range leads do come out from the TAU, but I can't figure out where they would go. I know the rears are full range, but they are mono so there is no separation.
 

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We analyzed the signal with a RTA. I do really have 100% of the signal.
So do you know which leads were tapped? What was the frequency range? If I knew where I could get a complete signal, I might just redo parts of the system. When I tested the system I could get a wide range, but not a complete one. I tested each lead individually. I was able to get a complete range on the rear speakers but that didn't do me any good as they were mono.
 

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So do you know which leads were tapped? What was the frequency range? If I knew where I could get a complete signal, I might just redo parts of the system. When I tested the system I could get a wide range, but not a complete one. I tested each lead individually. I was able to get a complete range on the rear speakers but that didn't do me any good as they were mono.
No I agree with your assumption of the incomplete channels on the bose system. You need to have a processor that allows "channel summing" like the excellent audio control products. In my system, the higher part of the frequencies that would be sent to the bose dash speakers and the lower part of the frequencies that would be sent to the bose door speakers are both plugged in the the Bit One and the Bit One recombines them into the complete signal.
 

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No I agree with your assumption of the incomplete channels on the bose system. You need to have a processor that allows "channel summing" like the excellent audio control products. In my system, the higher part of the frequencies that would be sent to the bose dash speakers and the lower part of the frequencies that would be sent to the bose door speakers are both plugged in the the Bit One and the Bit One recombines them into the complete signal.
That makes sense. Again, a very good system and I've learned more about the Bose functionality. Thanks for posting this.
 
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