1995 SL500 Sound System overhaul - Mercedes-Benz Forum
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-23-2018, 05:41 AM Thread Starter
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1995 SL500 Sound System overhaul

"Project 1995 SL500" It's almost that time again to bring 1995 tired factory sound system into 2018.

The goal for this car is to make it sound good yet remain simple, no complicated crossover matching, no extensive modification and not giving up any trunk space for the subwoofer and budget minded. So here is the plan:



I will do 10" subwoofer, again, in the trunk, but, unlike my SL320 system, I will not be using factory Bose woofer, instead, I really think that R129 can benefit from the Tactile Bass Shaker installed into the driver's seat. Particularly with the top down and road noise, some of the lower frequencies no longer felt as pronounced as they should.

R129 has a very rigid metal bucket of the seat base with plenty of clearance for mounting one these Base Shakers directly onto it, to kinda wake up that "sensory" dimension/experience. The seat bucket is easy to remove and easy to work with, so I'm definitely looking forward to trying these little guys.

The 5-Channel amps I've grown to be a big fan of for the past 25+ years, and going to use one again. Trying something different this time, JVC... It is simple, class D, on the factory site, images show good quality components, good specs and was on great sale, and still compact. Going to be mounted into the factory CD changer location using factory CD changer mounting rails, so no extra space taken from the trunk.

Now, 6x9 for the rear is an overkill, but, for the open road, with top down may not be a bad thing. I can always tone them down.

The head unit is simple, yet has matching illumination selection and most importantly DTA setting. So slowly I will start...

Regards,
D
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-23-2018, 08:22 AM
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Don't forget to add tweeters in the dash where the car phone speakers are currently located. Made a big difference in the sound in my 95.
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-23-2018, 08:29 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Lee Wireless View Post
Don't forget to add tweeters in the dash where the car phone speakers are currently located. Made a big difference in the sound in my 95.
Yep, that's where Focal tweeters will go - indeed makes a big difference. Sound stage transforms! Already removed the stock phone speakers, temporary old pair of old Boston tweeters in it, powered by the new head unit.

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D
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-23-2018, 08:36 AM
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 12-25-2018, 12:16 PM Thread Starter
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No coal for me this year, thanks "Santa", its a start...



Regards,
D
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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-17-2019, 03:43 PM Thread Starter
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Winter hibernation, what can I say...

Figured out what I'm going to do with the rear speakers. Unlike my other R129 system, I want this one not only clean and precise, but also loud with the top down. I got extra rear compartment doors so I can work with them as I want to. Definitely installing 6x9's in those compartments.

Very thoughtful designed speakers in terms of flexibility. Swivel mount tweeters, and top or bottom mountable (all the hardware supplied).

20190317_171749 by Duh_Vinci, on Flickr

These I will mount from the bottom

20190317_172113 by Duh_Vinci, on Flickr

And from the top, I will finally use these custom speaker grills I've wanted to use for years, but had to be a well suited install:

20190317_173307 by Duh_Vinci, on Flickr

These are low profile, all metal 2pc design

20190317_173222 by Duh_Vinci, on Flickr

The trim ring I will coat in very dark graphite matte to match the color of the carpet, and the center grill portions will be covered in grill grill cloth, the end result as I envision it will look very well suited for the interior.

Regards,
D
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2019, 03:00 AM
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Someone gave me a complete rear shelf assembly, so cannibalized it with bass speaker, ported it ,recovered, put a 3 or 500watt amp in trunk at side, have a bass control knob at console slide compartment, works great, with top down outside noise cuts the sound in half.
A better head unit would be nice, door and dash speakers are original and work fine.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2019, 04:12 AM
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I'm still recommending the Pioneer MVH-series (I bought the MVH-S512BS) or SPH-10bt over the Kenwood. I had the KDC-mp562bt that sounded terrible in the stock system compared to the Pioneer I replaced it with. Then the smart sync app basically lets you use your phone to control the headunit - including navigation. So for road tripping, mount your phone, press the nav button and your preferred app comes up (waze, maps, etc). And 200,000 color choices for the display and buttons let you match perfectly to the interior.

I'm sure your custom install will sound fine with the Kenwood - but the Pioneer app and the plug-and-play of the Pioneer was worth the $100 spend.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2019, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ceta4zng View Post
I'm still recommending the Pioneer MVH-series (I bought the MVH-S512BS) or SPH-10bt over the Kenwood. I had the KDC-mp562bt that sounded terrible in the stock system compared to the Pioneer I replaced it with. Then the smart sync app basically lets you use your phone to control the headunit - including navigation. So for road tripping, mount your phone, press the nav button and your preferred app comes up (waze, maps, etc). And 200,000 color choices for the display and buttons let you match perfectly to the interior.

I'm sure your custom install will sound fine with the Kenwood - but the Pioneer app and the plug-and-play of the Pioneer was worth the $100 spend.
I do agree with the app and features of the Pioneer, but in this case, he is bypassing the stock system, so, the Kenwood should be good to go.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 03-18-2019, 06:08 AM
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I do agree with the app and features of the Pioneer, but in this case, he is bypassing the stock system, so, the Kenwood should be good to go.
I agree that the Kenwood sound will benefit from the custom install - just that for the same money, the app and color choices of the Pioneer make it the favorite for me. Admittedly, I have not checked if Kenwood currently offers a similar app.
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