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Just finished my installation, first time doing this ironically it wasn't that difficult. I have Bose in mine so i did what Dave suggested with the RCA plugs after that the installation was a breeze. The sound quality isn't the best but it is good enough for the time being, later down the road i'm going to install new speakers.
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Dumb question, but instead of having some harness bypass adapter (is there one?) couldn't one just wire an aftermarket HU into the Bose HU Harness, then at the Bose amp harness, take the corresponding inputs and run them to the output wires?
 

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Risickulous
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You could if you didn't want to do it right. That factory wiring is some skimpy shit. Why not at least bypass the factory HU wiring since the power and ground is crap and just wire from the head unit down to the plug on the output side of the amp if you want to keep the stock wiring to the speakers. Seems odd considering Bose speakers are the cheapest shit ever made and won't match your new HU very well.
 

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You could if you didn't want to do it right. That factory wiring is some skimpy shit. Why not at least bypass the factory HU wiring since the power and ground is crap and just wire from the head unit down to the plug on the output side of the amp if you want to keep the stock wiring to the speakers. Seems odd considering Bose speakers are the cheapest shit ever made and won't match your new HU very well.
I wasn't aware the factory wiring was crap. I figured by 2005, Mazda would at least be using decent wires.

My 98 Jeep had a similar setup, with a factory HU and factory amp working together. Ultimately, I ended up gutting just about everything. Last decent 1.5 DIN HU Alpine made, new 4 channel amp, removed all the tweeters and just kept the door speakers and soundbar speakers. But I used the existing speaker wire. Never been a fan of replacing all the speaker wire.

So is the suggestion being if you want to replace the factory HU and bypass the amp, to run all new wire? Including 12v power and ground?
 

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I wasn't aware the factory wiring was crap. I figured by 2005, Mazda would at least be using decent wires.

My 98 Jeep had a similar setup, with a factory HU and factory amp working together. Ultimately, I ended up gutting just about everything. Last decent 1.5 DIN HU Alpine made, new 4 channel amp, removed all the tweeters and just kept the door speakers and soundbar speakers. But I used the existing speaker wire. Never been a fan of replacing all the speaker wire.

So is the suggestion being if you want to replace the factory HU and bypass the amp, to run all new wire? Including 12v power and ground?
It's not a Mazda thing. It's a factory thing. They all use thin, cheap wiring to cut cost and save weight and space. Any decent amp or stereo setup should have better speaker wire ran. It's usually not that hard. The Mazda Door wiring connector on the Speed6 was one of the hardest I've ever had to go through though. Worth it in the end. That tiny 18 gauge shit with thin jackets that is factory in cars wasn't designed for the best stereo performance there is.
 

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It's not a Mazda thing. It's a factory thing. They all use thin, cheap wiring to cut cost and save weight and space. Any decent amp or stereo setup should have better speaker wire ran. It's usually not that hard. The Mazda Door wiring connector on the Speed6 was one of the hardest I've ever had to go through though. Worth it in the end. That tiny 18 gauge shit with thin jackets that is factory in cars wasn't designed for the best stereo performance there is.
I will have to check it out. I am not saying that there isn't a performance advantage to using better wiring, its just always been a hot topic as to in reality, with just a cheaper aftermarket HU and speakers, is it really worth the time/$$$.

I am not looking to put anything too high end in. Talking a cheap Pioneer $150 HU or Alpine, with some Infinity speakers. Prob a coaxial in the rear doors and components in the front.

Now, if I was putting in some higher end stuff, sure.
 

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Okay I was reading this post and im not very good with all this, i am learning slowly, but i am kind of confused. I have an 04 with bose and i installed my Jensen headunit by matching color to color wires and then plugging everything in. I am confused where you were soldering wires together and with the harness plug layouts and stuff. I was just curious as to if someone could clear all this up. Like wheres the bose harness? i dont know which one that is. and also, if I just plugged everything in the way it is, is this bad for my car? (like i said, im new at this wiring stuff and still trying to figure it out)
 

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Wait... you replaced the FACTORY unit for a JENSEN?? You should be slapped!!
yeah, it was a gift and i needed something to play my ipod/iphone since my car didn't have a aux jack and this one can charge my phone too while i play it and its touch screen so im not worried about the brand name. like i said, im new at all this so down the road ill invest in a new one. but i don't understand if just plugging everything in the way metra says too will ruin anything since this keeps talking about the bose amp under the passanger seat and stuff. someone has to dumb this down for me. ha.
 

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thx to that post !!! night and day difference!

i did an experiment and tried to conect just one rear back speacker the olf way(hu wire teped to metra harness wire) and i dont know why all 4 speakers sounded as they are in old mode without rca plugs (bad as before this posts mode.
i gues all 4 speakers need to be rca plug soldered and connected for it to sound better.
 

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[QUOTEOkay I was reading this post and im not very good with all this, i am learning slowly, but i am kind of confused. I have an 04 with bose and i installed my Jensen headunit by matching color to color wires and then plugging everything in. I am confused where you were soldering wires together and with the harness plug layouts and stuff. I was just curious as to if someone could clear all this up. Like wheres the bose harness? i dont know which one that is. and also, if I just plugged everything in the way it is, is this bad for my car? (like i said, im new at this wiring stuff and still trying to figure it out)[/QUOTE]

ill try to...

so your new head unit came with lots of different wiring.
wires that you need for that mode are(from new hu)

1)18 pin connector extension lead
2)wiring that connects to your HU and gous to the amplifire ,it has rca plugs in the end ( in my case it is for 6 chanel amp with 6 rca plugs 3 reds and 3 white)

there are 2 ways to connect the speakers.
1) as you did,by using the 18 pin extension lead and just connect wire to wire ( 2 wires per speaker , 8 total)

2) connect 18 pin extension lead to your HU and tap all the wires needet,but do not touch any speaker wires from that 18 pin

now you got all the stuff connected just 8 speaker wires are not(metra 8 wires and 8 speaker wires from new 18 pin extension), so the ones you need to solder plugs to ,are the speaker wires from metra harness .(+ and - from a speaker to 1 rca plug. total 8 wires =4 plugs)
speaker wires from you HU harness can be insulated and left alone...

after you have soldered the plugs ( Soldering 101 - YouTube)

now take the oteher harness that came with the HU for aplifier connect it to the HU and the connect new rca plugs to the rca plugs on that harness.

thats it.
 

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Hey everyone, I have an '04 6s with Bose. The sound quality seemed fine to me but the CD player was acting up and I wanted new features like aux/usb/bluetooth anyway.

I installed a Sony HU with the Metra dash kit from Crutchfield following the wiring directions that were included. I didn't think I had to do anything special since Crutchfield specifically said the Metra kit was compatible with Bose systems.

Audio quality is good, volume is good, and all the features work. One MAJOR problem though. When I turn the HU on and off or change radio stations, I hear a "pop" sound out of the speakers. The HU also has a "beep" feature when you press different buttons. The beeping is so loud that it hurts my ears sometimes. It's just always loud no matter what the volume is set on.

There's an option to turn off the beep but this seems like some kind of connection problem and I don't want to just ignore it if it can be fixed. At first I thought it was a grounding issue. The HU ground wire had a ring on it that I placed under a screw to ground it and I covered the ground wire from the Metra kit. Then I cut off the ring and connected the HU ground to the Metra ground. Same thing.

I've seen stuff about line output converters and now i've stumbled upon this thread and am wondering if I should be using the HU's RCA connections.

Sorry for the long post. Any help would be appreciated. Here's a link to the HU I got for reference: Sony MEX-BT4100P CD receiver at Crutchfield.com
 

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I've seen stuff about line output converters and now i've stumbled upon this thread and am wondering if I should be using the HU's RCA connections.

Yes.

In short, if you did not do any wiring outside the metra (bypassing the Bose amp) then yes, you need to be using the aftermarket hu's rca preouts.

The stock Bose system goes:

Bose hu (line level signal) ----> Bose amp, under seat (converted to speaker level) -----> Bose speakers and also a line level signal to Bose sub which is then converted to speaker level at the Bose sub amp which is located directly on the Bose sub.

So with your aftermarket hu, you are sending a speaker level signal to the Bose amp which then sends out an amp'd speaker level signal to the Bose speakers.

Easiest way to use the Rca outs is: take two pairs of Rca's, cut them both so you have about 6-8" of wire along with one side of the plugs. Strip the wires. On your harness where you connected the aftermarket hu harness to the metra, cut the 8 speaker wire connections.

The side of the speaker wires that goes to the aftermarket hu, tape up individually and tie them together so they dont do anything, touch anything.

The side of the wires that goes to the metra harness, solder/connect the stripped rca's. Keep in mind positive and negative and label them, front left, front right etc.

One the rca's connected, plug them into the correct preouts on the back of the hu, and switch the hu's output to usually an amp setting if needed.

Should be very simple.

Also to prevent confusion, each rca plug will be connected to two wires ( positive and negative)
Ex. One plug will have front left positive to one wire (usually the white or grey depending on rca) and front left negative (usually black) to the other wire.

So you will end up with 4 plugs connected to 8 wires total.
 
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Yes.

In short, if you did not do any wiring outside the metra (bypassing the Bose amp) then yes, you need to be using the aftermarket hu's rca preouts.

The stock Bose system goes:

Bose hu (line level signal) ----> Bose amp, under seat (converted to speaker level) -----> Bose speakers and also a line level signal to Bose sub which is then converted to speaker level at the Bose sub amp which is located directly on the Bose sub.

So with your aftermarket hu, you are sending a speaker level signal to the Bose amp which then sends out an amp'd speaker level signal to the Bose speakers.

Easiest way to use the Rca outs is: take two pairs of Rca's, cut them both so you have about 6-8" of wire along with one side of the plugs. Strip the wires. On your harness where you connected the aftermarket hu harness to the metra, cut the 8 speaker wire connections.

The side of the speaker wires that goes to the aftermarket hu, tape up individually and tie them together so they dont do anything, touch anything.

The side of the wires that goes to the metra harness, solder/connect the stripped rca's. Keep in mind positive and negative and label them, front left, front right etc.

One the rca's connected, plug them into the correct preouts on the back of the hu, and switch the hu's output to usually an amp setting if needed.

Should be very simple.

Also to prevent confusion, each rca plug will be connected to two wires ( positive and negative)
Ex. One plug will have front left positive to one wire (usually the white or grey depending on rca) and front left negative (usually black) to the other wire.

So you will end up with 4 plugs connected to 8 wires total.
Thanks for the quick helpful response! I will have to try this out this weekend.
 

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I couldn't wait for the weekend so I went ahead and did the job.

I had originally connected all the wires from the HU harness to the Metra harness. I disconnected the 8 speaker wires and attached RCA plugs on the Metra harness. Then plugged the RCAs into the outputs on the HU. Overall it sounds pretty good. I'll get a better idea when I start driving around a little bit. Here are my immediate observations:

Right away the biggest difference is volume. Turning the volume up to 16 or 17 used to be really loud. Now I can go up to 50, which I didn't even know was the max.

No more beeping...at all. Even when I turn it on in the menu there are no beeps. I don't mind though. I think it's a dumb feature anyway.

Overall I'm satisfied. I thought I had to live with all that noise. Glad I could fix it.Thanks for the help!
 

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So in order for everything to work right with my aftermarket head unit I have to spend 200 dollars for the kit plus the price of the rca connectors, do this extra bypass stuff, just to get a 160 dollar radio to work in my car. The Mazda 6 is ridiculous.
 

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It's really not unusual anymore. Las an example most GM cars made in the past decade are the same way with really expensive wiring harnesses. The more fancy electronics manufacturers stuff into car radios the more complicated and expensive it gets to replace the radio.


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