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i would like to upgrade my OEM Bose system. i'd like to do this w/o having to change out the head unit.

i was wondering if i were to change the door speakers, adding an amp, adding tweeters and some mid's.......would i get a much better sound out of the stock head unit?

aside from the obvious upgrade to the music quality, i am also interested in getting a much better DVD sound quality.....from highs to lows. maybe even getting a 5.1 or 6.1 quality.

the bottm line is........is this even possible w/o changing out the head unit?

thx in advance!
 

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This has been touched on before -- and unfortunately ...it's not that simple. The folks at Bose have decided to ensure that it's anything but simple to replace the OEM speakers. My understanding is (I've not pulled one to see) is that the BOSE speakers are either 2 or 4 ohm speakers...but even more peculiarly is that they only run one wire to the speaker. In other words...if you want to upgrade...you'll have to upgrade your head unit...and go through the trouble of running all your speaker wires as well -- basically starting from scratch. You're in even bigger trouble if you have the NAV systems....because all the display from the head is shown on that...and I've not seen or heard of anything that can substitute thus far. I'll be interested if you discover something that has changed....i.e. someone has put something out there that can substitute....but as of a few months ago...this is how it was.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
EightmanVT said:
This has been touched on before -- and unfortunately ...it's not that simple. The folks at Bose have decided to ensure that it's anything but simple to replace the OEM speakers. My understanding is (I've not pulled one to see) is that the BOSE speakers are either 2 or 4 ohm speakers...but even more peculiarly is that they only run one wire to the speaker. In other words...if you want to upgrade...you'll have to upgrade your head unit...and go through the trouble of running all your speaker wires as well -- basically starting from scratch. You're in even bigger trouble if you have the NAV systems....because all the display from the head is shown on that...and I've not seen or heard of anything that can substitute thus far. I'll be interested if you discover something that has changed....i.e. someone has put something out there that can substitue....but as of a few months ago...this is how it was.
this is what i was afraid of!

now couldn't i run regular speaker wires from the OEM Bose system or even run the single wire from the head unit, then to a possible "converter" of some sort to convert into red/black wires. i'm not installer, but just a thought! :D

luckily, i do not have a NAV system.
 

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Before we owned the '05 Armada, we owned an '03 Murano w/Bose. I gutted everything except for the head unit, because the head unit shared the same circuit card as the HVAC controls. In the end, I replaced all the stock speakers and added two subs. I found a company called Pac-Audio that makes Bose interface kits that allow you to add aftermarket amplifiers to your existing Bose stereo system without cutting any wires. The unit "T's" into the stock harness just behind the radio and gives the user front and rear RCA outputs for an amplifier, along with a remote turn on lead. We sold the Murano and put it all back to stock and I have the Pac-Audio unit in my garage right now as we speak. I am waiting on word to see if the same connectors are used in the Armada w/Bose. If tradition follows, it should because all Bose systems up to 2004 have the same connector at the back of the radio. We shall see.

About the comment for the Bose speakers using one wire. The Murano's had two going to each one, just like every other speaker I've ever seen. Each has a positive and negative. Without one of the two, I dont see how a speaker would be able to function, because of the way the magnet needs both sides of input in order for the speaker to move and reproduce sound. It IS common for the Bose systems to have less than normal impedance for their speakers so they can extract more power out of the tiny amps they use on their cars. I've seen some Bose speakers for cars read as low as 1/2 ohm. This is where you get the problem when people just replace the door speakers and use the factory amp. For example, if the stock Bose is running off of 2 ohm speakers, and you replace them with 4 ohm speakers, then you are cutting the amplifier power output by one half.

Hope this sheds some light on the subject. The way I see it now, people with Nav should be able to do this as well, just as long as they dont mess with the 10th speaker (or impedance match the old one with new one if they do want to replace it) because this is where the Nav voice comes from. You'll notice when the voice guidance is talking, it lowers the volume of just about all speakers except for the center channel. I see this working as well for the Pac-Audio unit as well because the Bose amps are usually external to the head unit. If this is true with the Armada, the Pac-Audio interface ties inbetween the head unit and the Bose amp, just like my Murano did.
 

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I would agree with you regarding your comment about the BOSE wiring. Since I was passing on what an audio shop owner told me when I stopped in, right after buying the Armada, to discuss upgrade options, I decided to see if there was anything in the manual. The manual schematic shows two wire pair going to each set of speakers...but it looks like the speakers are wired in parallel -- which could explain the non-traditional impedances of the speaker sets.

The Bose amp must be custom built for this type of set up - would need more specs on the speakers.
 

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I hate my bose system. It sounds so hollow. There is no depth to the music. There is a woofer in my system? Where is it? I can't feel that much bass from it. What is it a 5" sub or something. heh ;) I can't wait to rip it all out and start from scratch! I'll wait a year or so before i do any mods to this thing.
 

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Tien said:
I hate my bose system. It sounds so hollow. There is no depth to the music. There is a woofer in my system? Where is it?
You should be sitting on it.
 

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Of all the installs

Of all the radio upgrades I've done over the years, the Armada was the worst. Had to run all new wire for the speakers, and the install took me two full days.

For you Bose folks, try stuffing some fiber-fill (get it at Wal-Mart) into your sub under your seat. This will "trick" the sub into thinking it's bigger than it is and will give you some improvement on the lower end. It still won't be :awesome:
, but it will be better.

You know what they say:

"No highs, no lows, it must be Blows- er Bose!"
 

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adjmcloon:

What all did you replace in your set up? Do you have Nav? I am thinking of doing the same, but just haven't had the time to look into it. What size speakers everywhere?
 

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Cardomain

I don't have the nav, but actually I'm going to put a Lilliput 7" touchscreen in my dash with the factory bezel cover. Attached to that I'm going to run a Pentium4 mini-computer with DVD for navigation, etc.

For now though, it's just audio. I've got MB Quart components all around with a Premier head unit and a Soundstream Van Gogh 800.5 amp. Check out my cardomain page for pics, etc:

http://www.cardomain.com/memberpage/547845
 

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Adjmcloon,
Could you move your headunit up or down and get the monitor to fit above or below? It looks like there is a lot of blank wasted space there...
 

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I suppose

I suppose. Right now it's mounted to where it is pretty much centered to the 2 din hole. But actually, I like that clean look and with the aluminum on it it looks pretty good in person. Lilliput makes a model that has a brushed aluminum frame, so that's what I'm going to go with. I think my only hope (other than having something custom) is to just get the factory navigation bezel and mold it in. Did you see that thread over on TT? It didn't look too hard.
 

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Looks like a nice set up. Looks like I'm also "screwed" cause of Navigation...haha. Do they MB Quarts drop right in, or did you have to modify anything? I have some Infinity Kappas I might be putting in the Armada.
 

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Yep

Yep, I just bought the 6.5's with the 1" tweets all around. I had to make a mounting template for the fronts, and the backs just bolted in.
 

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You wouldnt happen to have any pics of the speakers installed would you? I'm looking at the possibility of integrating an aftermarket receiver into the stock navigation through Pac-Audio. Of course, I will probably lose the radio info on the nav screen, but who cares...
 

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Sorry

Unfortunately, I just have the pics over at cardomain. The install kicked my ass enough to where I didn't even want to take pictures- I just wanted to get it done. Pulling speaker wire through the door grommets and around the vehicle was a pain in the ass.

I have the PAC SWI-X installed so I could keep my steering wheel controls, and it works great. I put my transmitter in the front of the console. Just pulled out the console section and mounted it right next to the key socket. Works great.

If you want to keep the stock sizes and just bolt speakers in, it will be a little tricky for the front. The front doors have 6x9's and a 2" mid/hi in the dash. Honestly it was no problem to bolt in 6.5" woofers and just make a template for the 1" tweets. The sound is great and with the tweets pointing at you from the dash you get great stereo imaging and crystal clear highs. I suppose you could get 6x9's and some separate tweets and cross them over at whichever frequencies you prefer. Do your speakers come with crossovers? Not sure how well versed you are in car audio, but it's not that hard if you know what you're doing.

The rear doors have 6.5's and 1" tweets from the factory so they just bolt right in.

I don't have NAV so I can't help you. LLajumpvid might, though as he's done some NAV work and tied in. Do a search for his username and/or dvd and see what you come up with. There has been lots of info on this subject in the past on this forum.

Good luck, and post some pics!
 

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Yep

Those are what I used- Crutchfield? As I recall I had to very slightly mod them, but they worked just fine. 6x9 to 6.5 adapter?
 
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