2012 focus with sony upgrade retain stock headunit & aftermarket speakrers\amp
I have a customer with a '12 focus and the upgraded sony system. before i dig into his car i was trying to do some reasearch and i was not comming up with much!
I dont know how many people have upgrade to an aftermarket amplifier\subwoofer\speaker setup, but that is what we are doing.
we are trying to retain the stock headunit
and i will be installing an arc audio xdi805, german meistro concept component speakers up front, and a custom fiberglass box for a sundown audio SA8v2.
before i make him buy some line output converter and anything else, i was interested to know if the sony headunit has low level phono outputs (RCA connectors) - or does it only have high level speaker outputs?
basically i am interested to know what signal goes from the stock radio to the stock amplifier. if i can tap into that, and it outputs low level RCA signal that an aftermarket amplifier can use, i do not need a line output converter. if it is not - then i need to know if i need to tap in before, or after the stock amplifier.
other than that i have all my bases covered.
maybe if anyone has images of behind the sony radio, that would also be helpful before i take his car apart.
diymobileaudio [dot] com/forum
You basically have to use the high level outputs coming out of the sony amp, which is located in the trunk or rear hatch area under the spare tire cover in the upper left hand corner of the foam spacer block.
Give this thread a read it will give you a jump start on wire locations
The focus only has one center channel (in the front) and one sub, hence the 10 speakers versus 12 in the fusion, and the wire colors are most likely different.
Most likely you will not have to rip into the dash at all, just the doors and trunk or hatch area.
i read somewhere that the factory headunit has low level subwoofer outputs. is that also true? if it is then i only need 2 channels from the LOC out of the amplifier for the front speakers.
otherwise i need 3 channels on the LOC for the stock sony sub\amp.
i just need to come up with a solution for it this week. at this point im having him get two LOC's - a single channel and a dual channel unless somone can identify if the stock headunit does have a subwooder output.
I know on my fusion there was no low level outputs on the back of the head unit, most likely the focus has the same setup. Basic LOC's are not expensive, just get three of them and be done with it.
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the plan is an audio control LC6i. should be perfect.
thanks a bunch. i will post what i can on here as far as information i glean from taking his car apart :)
sorry i never posted pictures. here is what i ended up doing.
i found that the stock radio does not have a built in volume. it sends its low-level signal for the front, rear, and sub via an rca-type cable into the sony amplifier, and the volume is controlled inside the amplifier. you CAN take these signals and input them directly into an aftermarket amplifier, but you will have no way to control the volume unless you got some sort of resistance based circuit, or a digital interface with the headunit of some kind to deal with it... so i ended up using a line output converter for simplicitys sake - and the fact that i had a real nice one on hand.
this looks to be the harness with the signal wires (with thick black shielding to the right) and whatever digital control for the other wires. when i tested the line level wires from the headunit - the voltage would never change with the volume roll, but when i tested the amplifiers output wires, the voltage would change with the knob. if i unplugged this plug - the volume knob would no longer do anything, there would be no sound from the speakers, and on the display - the indication of the volume going up and down would no longer appear. these are my reasons for not messing with it - i deduced the amplifier has a volume control on output side. :p
this is the factory amplifier;
i built a ported fiberglass enclosure for a sundown SD-8 V2 subwoofer. about 1.5 cubic feet tuned to 35hz.
this is the amp rack. it consists of the stock amplifier. the speaker outputs from that were disconnected from the speakers, and put into an audio control LC8i line output converter \ preamp, and then the signal was fed to an arc audio xdi805 amplifier to drive the subwoofer with about 400w@2ohm, and the front speakers - a pair of german meistro 6.5" components. sorry they are a bit blurry.
the false floor is pressure-fit wood with risers on the left, right and center. it is about 100 times better fitment than the stock floor - i cant believe how poor of a job ford did making that cardboard\carpet piece.
Very nice work! Looks very professional.
Only one question, do you have to pull the sub out to change the right rear tail lamp?
i got a PM, here is my reply.
what i did, was using a 1.5v AA battery, i soldered a wire to the + side and the - side, and touched the pins in the connector (after looking at the wire colors behind the speakers in the doors). when you touch the battery to the pin, the speaker will make a clicking noise *DO NOT HOLD THE BATTERY THERE* just tap it. that will give you the wire from the trunk to the speaker. i then cut them with plenty of slack on each side and put male and female quick disconnect connectors on them, so that i could easily put the setup back to its OEM condition. i then took the side that goes to the speaker, and made a small pigtail that could reach the amplifier terminals. the other side that goes out of the amp i put into the line output converter. it was super simple.
i really wish i could use the low level outputs from the headunit - but if i did that there was no volume control because that happens inside the sony amplifier. so the signal BEFORE the amplifier is always at 100% volume and there is no way to change it unless you built your own volume controller for it.
and another PM;
**there are tools MADE for getting contours - a CONTOUR TOOL is one of them. another is a flexible curve template tool. if you dont have either one of these - i will tell you a simple way to do this.
first things first. you want to get some cardboard, and cut it real rough to the shape of your trunk corner or wherever you want your template to fit. once its kind of the same there should be gaps here and there or whatever.
then, using your masking tape, and other pieces of scrap cardboard - tape\cut smaller pieces to fit into the biggest gaps. once you are as close as you can get it we go to the next step.
type A - find a real big washer and trace the contour of the wall of the trunk like this -
type B - get a pencil or marker (i like the fat sharpies) and tape a strip of cardboard about 2" long to the side of it perpindicular and drag the end of the cardboard along the wall to copy the contour onto the cardboard. you could also use a compass like so;
more in this link -
once your line is drawn - use a sharp razor to cut the cardboard out, and then repeat and tape the pieces together until you make one big template of the trunk.
place this onto a piece of wood, trace the template, and cut it with a jig saw!
i hope that helps.
btw, you can buy automotive carpet at walmart - but it is very stiff. try jo-anne-fabrics for un-backed carpet that can stretch around contours if you are doing a fiberglass box. i recommend at least using 3m super77 adhesive *READ THE DIRECTIONS* you need to spray BOTH surfaces and wait until the glue solvent evaporates - THEN put the carpet on. when doing carpet work - use a brand new razor blade. it will make your life a whole lot easier.
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