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Jez

E61 standard hifi?

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So, there I was expecting the stereo in my newly acquired 2008 E61 LCI 535D Touring to be something slightly worse than a portable speaker from Poundland! I read various comments on forums to inform that view, here and elsewhere. 

 

But it simply isn’t, in fact on some music it sounds brilliant, especially on cd replay. I hear decent levels of bass with reasonable definition, vocals sound very natural and it has that bogie factor too. Put something like Led Zep on and it sounds superb. 

 

I’m now a bit confused as was intending to book the car in almost immediately for MB Quart speakers and subs and a matching power amp upgrade .I’d be very interested to hear of others opinions? 

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Hi,

 

Just goes to show how the same setup can and will sound different to different people! 

 

I've heard the base audio in E60's and E90's, E53/E70 X5's and then the same cars with some of the better OEM setups including Logic 7 etc, one of the extended family members 2005 120d had L7 and I thought they all sounded muddy, undefined, woolly bass, lack of sparkle and a bit lifeless. Lots of tweaking improved a little but not much. I've had demo's via a few of the UK's dealer level importers for new products, active DSP addon's etc and although improved by a good margin, to me still didn't sound as good as a modest upgraded/aftermarket setup. 

 

For your E61, given you were going to get the upgraded and much better performing MB Quart speakers anyway, I'd say get them and fit them in. As time/budget allows, if you then add in a compact high quality amplifier, those MB Quart's will play even better! The sub bass upgrade under the front seats will also play much more strongly too!  I think at this stage you'd be rather astounded at the improvement and most likely won't be describing the OEM setup as you've currently done !

 

Cheers, Dennis!

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Hi Dennis, 

 

Thanks, a really useful reply. The system I was thinking of was the front MB Quarts with the matching subs and a matching four channel power amp. All to be installed straight away. 

 

To to put this in context. I’ve been an audiophile (nerd) since I was 15 (now 50),  having owned a very good Linn/Naim system (still have a hi-spec LP12), a variety of different speakers including current active studio monitors and a Weiss Dac202. Not to mention many customers (worked in a Linn/Naim/Rega shop when I was a student) and friends systems I’ve heard over the years and more recently Naims full blown Statement/Focal system. So I think I have a reasonable grounding in what sounds right and what doesn’t! Hence my surprise that the system in my car performed beyond expectations. Now it may be partly down to the type of music people listen to - as you say audio is hugely subjective. 

 

If ianyone has an uprated system in the Sussex area (I’m Brighton/Horsham), I’d be really interested in hearing it before I splash out my hard earned.  

Edited by Jez

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Hi Jez,

 

I'm not far behind you at 47 and also been a hi-fi enthusiast since around 14 ! Between me and some schoolmates, we'd all save up our pocket money/birthday money etc and buy a mid range hi-fi component and share it for a few weeks each amongst us. Older brothers/cousins who were working and had contacts could get us discounts, for instance, Panasonic/Technics main UK centre was a couple miles away and we'd get staff discount prices. A few had home AV and TV shops etc too. The family audio system was Technics and so I'd fiddle around with it etc and try a different cassette deck or record player. A Nakamichi RX202 (or 505?) I remember we all purchased, along with amps/CD players (once they had come out a few years later) from the likes of Rotel, NAD and a few others. I don't doubt that you know what sounds good to you of course, but 'generally' BMW oem audio systems aren't really well rated. I agree that well recorded music can sound better on OEM setups and once some tweaking of audio controls is done, it can be acceptable / good.

 

When I passed my test, I'd already had an Alpine head unit and Clarion 3 way's & 2 ways sitting for a few months prior ready to be fitted into the then family's Vauxhall Cavalier!  I'd heard some of the older guys I knew and their setups and wanted to move in the direction they had which was excellent products and well installed - Capri 2.8i Specials & BMW 635CSi's of which there were a number of examples running around in the very late 80's and early 90's around here! So since then all my cars have had upgrades with quality as a fundamental aspect. 

 

A few recommendations for you;

 

1. Huets - http://www.huets.com/ they're in Shoreham by Sea

2. Studio In Car - https://studioincar.com/ they're around the Fareham/Portsmouth area, Speak to Carl. I had him finish off my car's install and do some custom fabrication work. 

3. Audio File - https://audiofile-incar.co.uk/audio-upgrades/bmw-1-2-3-4-5-6-7-and-x-series . A good overview on the stage 1,2 and 3 setups they do for BMW's including the E60/1s. 

 

Cheers, Dennis!

 

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Ah - a man after my own heart!  

 

I know Peter at Huets as have had them do previous ‘stealth’ installs. They fitted a MB Quart system with JL sub into a RS2000 - that sounded amazing. 

 

I do think the E61 is a good basis for a great system. The doors are so solid compared to many of the cars I’m used to and the discrete under seat subs are a great design. 

 

I think you you are helping to persuade me to spend some more money! 

Edited by Jez

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Hi Jez,

 

Great stuff! If you already know Peter at Huets, I don't need to say anymore really ! 

 

On the 'car' forums, there's plenty of misconceptions about lots of stuff and car audio is no different. Many will say that 'audio' is meant to be at home only and can never achieve great sound in a car. Over the years I've seen many many jaws drop when someone hears a modest, well installed and setup audio system in a car and then compared to what they 'heard' previously. The great thing is that nowadays, it's a lot easier and cheaper to get excellent SQ than what it used to cost in the 90's and early 2000's. Product technology has vastly improved and pricing has dropped massively in relation to performance levels. 

 

I'm sort of saying spend more money, but over time! do a stage 1, then 2 and then maybe 3? !

 

Cheers, Dennis!

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Me and my 15 year old son have noticed a definite loss of quality in sound in my E61 over the Mercedes S210 it replaced. Even on an 02 plate that had a Bose system that was excellent. The BMW just lacks depth of sound. Any other suggestions on speaker replacement?

Sent from my SM-G970F using Tapatalk

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