Base, Harman Kardon, and B&W wiring
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    1. #1
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      Base, Harman Kardon, and B&W wiring

      Thought I'd share a few things I've been looking into. Info applies to V90cc, but may apply to other models as well.

      Background:

      In 2018 and 2019 Volvo offered a Base (2??w, 10 speaker, code K502) stereo, a premium Harman Kardon (650w, 14 speaker, code K504) stereo, and a premium Bowers & Wilkins (1400w, 19 speaker stereo, code K503). However on 2019 Volvo Ocean Race models, the starting stereo offering was the HK stereo, which you could option up to the B&W stereo.

      In 2020 Volvo did away entirely with the Base option and the HK stereo became the new standard option on US-spec V90cc.

      My assumption was that Volvo saw that very few US destined V90ccs were being bought with the Base 10 speaker stereo, and that starting in 2020, with only the T6 being available, even fewer would be opting for a stripped down stereo option. I had a suspicion that Volvo also made this move because the HK and B&W systems share wiring harnesses, and it would cut down on inventory and assembly line logistics. I based this on that the missing 5 speakers from the HK system are; the nautilus speaker on the dash (the other center dash speaker is present on the HK system), the tweeters back in the headliner (the other midrange speakers are present on the HK system), and the mid-range speakers in the rear doors.

      From an older look at the Base vs. B&W system on the XC90:

      Untitled.001.jpeg

      And the wiring present at the amp on a V90cc with the HK system:

      20191123_153254.jpg
      20191123_153509.jpg
      20191123_153519.jpg

      Notice that the wiring for the V90cc with HK is identical to the XC90 with B&W.

      As of now, all that means is that the wiring to and from the amp is identical. Having seen B&W headliner speakers, I know those are drop in replacements with the HK units. I also know the center dash B&W speaker connector is the same as the HK speaker. So for those, there shouldn't be an issue swapping them in. The only question is whether the rear door harnesses and connectors are the same, to accommodate the B&W mid-range. The parts fiche isn't much help here, as they're a mess of several different options and production change overs. So, TBD on that.

      Anyway, figured I would share for those that are interested.

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    3. #2
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      Base, Harman Kardon, and B&W wiring

      Very good information. So whats the part numbers for the speakers in HK configuration? Are they the same as for HP (would think so).

      My guess the roof speakers are HP with one element. So then you can swap to B&W which have two elements each. Same goes for the center dashboard, gives an additional speaker.

      So update roof + center = 14 + 3 = 17

      I guess the two additional speakers are missing in the rear doors, maybe they are the tweeter which are missing?
      Last edited by HitTheRoadJack; 11-25-2019 at 03:33 AM.

    4. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by HitTheRoadJack View Post
      Very good information. So whats the part numbers for the speakers in HK configuration? Are they the same as for HP (would think so).

      My guess the roof speakers are HP with one element. So then you can swap to B&W which have two elements each. Same goes for the center dashboard, gives an additional speaker.

      So update roof + center = 14 + 3 = 17

      I guess the two additional speakers are missing in the rear doors, maybe they are the tweeter which are missing?
      The HK speakers are not the same as the Base speakers. I had already composed a part number comparison.

      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...t?usp=drivesdk

      Also, it's the mid-range speakers that are missing in the rear doors, not the tweeters.

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    6. #4
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      Quote Originally Posted by nbvolks View Post
      The HK speakers are not the same as the Base speakers. I had already composed a part number comparison.

      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...t?usp=drivesdk

      Also, it's the mid-range speakers that are missing in the rear doors, not the tweeters.
      This is so helpful! Thanks!
      2018 V90CC T5 with P*, Saville Gray/Charcoal
      2015.5 XC60 T5 Drive-E Platinum, Twilight Bronze/Hazel Brown

    7. #5
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      Nice :-)

    8. #6
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      Swapped out the amp from my MY19 HK system for a B&W amp (36012657).

      Everything bolted up and connected no problem. Sound-wise, it was louder for the same volume setting. The B&W amp was putting out more bass, so dialed that back in the equalizer and in the Sound Stage app. I did not get the 9 channel equalizer, that others got by swapping in the B&W amp. I instead still have the 5 channel equalizer. Another thing was that the Surround Sound setting in the Sound Stage app stopped working. It was audibly stuck in max surround. You could adjust it on screen, but it didn't change the sound. For now that's fine, because that's how I had it set.

      I'm wondering if the next time the car is in for servicing if the software update is going to recognize the new hardware and upload different software to the car.

    9. #7
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      Another thing that's come up since the swap is that the sound for the front proximity sensors is VERY muted. Rear sensor alerts sound the same as they always have. I'm thinking the B&W amp is looking to send that sound through the center channel tweeter...which for the moment doesn't exist. You can still slightly hear it coming from the front mid-range speakers.

    10. #8
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      Next step in the project is installing all of this.

      That will also allow me to inspect the door harnesses to double check the part numbers on those and cross reference to any B&W specific harness if necessary.
      Attached Images Attached Images

    11. #9
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      Installed B&W speakers in place of the HK door speakers.

      First three pics are of the rear door tweeters. The B&W tweeters are the same front and rear.
      Attached Images Attached Images

    12. #10
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      Next up were the front door mids and tweeters.
      Attached Images Attached Images

    13. #11
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      Impression so far....

      I forgot to photograph adding the center dash B&W speaker/tweeter combo, bit it's there as well. Overall, it was immediately obvious that the clarity was just a bit better.

      This is with the system still using the HK amp, HK door woofers, HK sub, and HK headliner speakers.

      I noted the existing door and door panel wiring harnesses so I can source the correct B&W equivalents where necessary. As it is, it appears the front door harnesses already support the B&W setup, but the front door panel harnesses may be HK and B&W specific. There's and extra set of pins on the door harness side that are not carried through to the door harness. The rear door panel harnesses are missing the connector for the mid speaker entirely, so that definitely needs to be sourced.

      Next steps:

      An easy pair to do would be to swap out the headliner speakers, which will up the speaker count by two with the addition of the B&W tweeters. It's also a quick plug-n-play that won't add much burden to the HK amp. I'm hesitant to swap out the woofers and the sub until I get the door harnesses sorted out, because I think those will be too much for the HK amp to power properly. And I can't put the B&W amp back in until those harnesses are sorted out so that the right speakers are getting the right signals.
      Last edited by nbvolks; 12-23-2019 at 09:52 AM.

    14. #12
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      I have the stock speakers. Would that be the HK?

    15. #13
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      Have you tried changing the Speaker Grille yet? To me they looked welded onto the door panel.

    16. #14
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      Quote Originally Posted by Fatandre View Post
      I have the stock speakers. Would that be the HK?
      Maybe.

      There are three stock systems that were available at various points for certain models.

      Base system = "High Performance"
      Harman Kardon = "High Performance Pro"
      Bowers & Wilkins = "Premium"

      If you have the HK system your front door grills and center dash grill should say "Harman Kardon" on them.

    17. #15
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      Quote Originally Posted by HitTheRoadJack View Post
      Have you tried changing the Speaker Grille yet? To me they looked welded onto the door panel.
      They are plastic riveted/welded on. To be honest, I was surprised to see that. I'll still do the swap, but that will have to wait until Spring when I can do it outside, or at least with the garage door open. Plastic welding needs to be done with PLENTY of ventilation.

    18. #16
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      I've updated the speaker parts crosswalk after spending some time on VIDA using reference vehicles to pull part numbers from. This crosswalk may work for other model years, but this one used MY19 cars, with relatively close build dates, as the baseline of comparison.

      https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...it?usp=sharing

      I also ordered the rear door panel harness that should accommodate the additional speaker for the HK system. Like most parts for Volvo, it seems these are also on back-order, so TBD on when they'll be in. I did however also order the correct screws and washers, so when installing the B&W speaker everything will be mounted up just as it would have been if it had been ordered that way.


      In poking around in VIDA for the three reference cars I did come across a few things, some good, some odd, and some are unknowns.

      The Good:

      - The IHUs between the B&W and HK car are the same. So there's no physical/hardware limitation there.
      - The front door wiring harnesses for the B&W and HK are the same. [Though that makes it all the more weird that I had the strange loss in mid-frequency sound (proximity sensor beep) when all I did was swap in the B&W amp. I have not swapped it in again since I swapped in the B&W speakers, so maybe I should try that. Or maybe the amp just needs a software refresh/update. More on that below].

      The Odd

      - VIDA's information on the part number for the B&W amp is confusing, and potentially conflicts with what is widely shown on most web-based part houses. In VIDA for MY19 a car with B&W is shown to use part number 36012657 [which is the amp that I have]. BUT...in the description it lists that as being used UP TO a certain chassis number which clearly pre-dates MY19. That's also what's reflected in online parts house descriptions. But here's where it gets weird. In VIDA if you put just that 36012657 part number in it returns all MY19 and newer cars as applicable options. If you put in part number 36003118, the amp part number where the description says it's for cars BEYOND a certain chassis number, it returns MY18 and older cars. So....I'm thinking that Volvo has messed up the descriptions for these two part numbers. It also would doesn't make sense to me that Volvo would have a later iteration of a part, but give it a lower part number, when it doesn't do that anywhere else that I can see. (see example of the superseded HK amp part number).

      So what's the physical difference between these two B&W amp part numbers? Does it impact performance? I don't know the answer to either. One thing I do know is that a friend with a MY18 V90cc, with B&W, has a status light just to the left of the MOST connector on the amp. That is not present on the B&W amp that I have, and otherwise all the connectors and wiring are the same.

      - Rear door panel harness. So this one is a real head scratcher. In VIDA it shows that the part number for the door harness attached to the rear door panels are the same between the B&W and HK car. Except they're not. In fact the part number present on the two harnesses on my rear door panels do not appear to exist anywhere in VIDA. Like at all, for any car, at any point in time. Not that it was superseded at any point, or anything, they just flat do not appear in VIDA. The harnesses on my car are, left side: 32218505 and right side: 32218506. Compared to what VIDA says should be there, which is left side: 31678592 and right side: 31678594.

      I mean...maybe my later revision harnesses numbers didn't make it to the VIDA programmers to upload in their reference lookup. Or more likely, Volvo opted for some production cost cutting by having an HK set for the manufacturing process (the door panels are sub-assemblies made in advance), but then opted to save money for stocking/warehousing purposes by listing the shared HK and B&W harness part number in VIDA, since it'll work for both.

      Unknowns

      - AUD reload. In the suite of parts associated with the different amps (which Volvo refers to as the AUD), there's a software part listed as part number 31489264. It's unclear to me what this would actually do. In VIDA you can see the existing software associated with either the B&W or HK AUD, and none of them match this part number. So what does this 'reload' do? Does it reflash the AUD and IHU and install the appropriate software based on the AUD that the IHU sees? In which case, is this the key to getting the B&W version of the Sound Experience app onto an HK car (or a base stereo car)?

      Before everyone says, "but Volvo has a server of what the car came with and won't allow that", I'm not so sure that's true. What it looks like to me, and how the car, VIDA, etc., interact, it's that VIDA looks for what's on the car. It does a hardware/software 'inventory', if you will. VIDA then applies updated software for the hardware it sees. Just as when you add certain accessories that require additional software for other components, when VIDA is connected, the new hardware/accessory is recognized on the bus and VIDA notifies the tech that "hey, you want/need to add this software part number".

      Either way, this aspect remains a bit of a mystery to me, and would need a willing tech to spend some time seeing what VIDA says once a car is hooked up with a different AUD than it was delivered with. That, or I need a proper battery maintainer so I can test it out myself. :P Probably end up being cheaper to do the latter.
      Last edited by nbvolks; 12-30-2019 at 02:14 PM.

    19. #17
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      Great reading I can’t advice with the unkown but I hope you are right. The odd seems a probably conclusion to keep spare part a minimum.

    20. #18
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      Quote Originally Posted by HitTheRoadJack View Post
      Great reading I can’t advice with the unkown but I hope you are right. The odd seems a probably conclusion to keep spare part a minimum.
      Yeah, Volvo seems pretty smart about some things (e.g.: how easy it is to remove the door panels and components), but then weird about other things like what I described above.

      Another thing I don't understand is why when others swapped in a B&W amp, they immediately saw the B&W 9 band equalizer. That wasn't the case for me and the HK system, but I don't know if that's again a software issue for the amp I have since it's a new unit, not one pulled from an existing car that may have been updated at some point.

    21. #19
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      *Update*

      Wiring diagrams for HK and B&W systems added to the google doc.

      The wiring diagrams present an additional oddity. The wiring for the B&W system on the driver's door, but not the passenger's door, is different from the wiring on the HK system. I don't understand what's going on with the wiring on the driver's door and why it's not replicated on the passenger's door.
      Last edited by nbvolks; 12-30-2019 at 11:52 PM.

    22. #20
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      I'll try my questions more directly with images to hopefully get a response.

      I'm trying to understand what I'm looking at in the wiring schematics of the MY19 V90 B&W system. The driver's side door has redundant wiring for the mid-range speaker. This wiring is not represented on the passenger's side. It's also not present in the HK system. Is this an error in the schematics, or is there a reason that it would be wired that way? This is all isolated to the door card/panel wiring harness.

      B&W system, with the portion wiring in question circled in red.

      B&W V90 MY19 wiring_v2.jpg

      And for comparison, the HK system, with the same section circled in red.

      HK V90 MY19 wiring_v2.jpg

    23. #21
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      And upgraded the rear headliner speakers, bringing the speaker count to 17, with the addition of the two tweeters.

      Still waiting on the rear door panel harnesses, which are on back order with an ETA of late January.

      Here's a comparison of the HK headliner speakers and the B&W speakers. Note the substantial difference in size of the magnets! The other thing worth pointing out is that the B&W version has additional padding on the frame so no vibrations are transferred to the mounting bracket. That's a cool little extra touch.

      These are by far the easiest speakers to swap out. Just use a small panel puller to pop off the covers, then 3 torx screws hold each speaker in place, disconnect old speaker, and reverse order to install. Took less than 15 minutes with photographing for comparison.
      Attached Images Attached Images

    24. #22
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      I suspect that an easy and relatively inexpensive upgrade would be to just swap out the the HK speakers in the front of the cabin (front doors and dash)with B&W speakers. Unless I missed something they would be plug n play and drop in?

      You wouldn’t end up with “the B&W system“ but you might get a significant upgrade wrt to detail and center staging without too much effort or technical expertise.


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    25. #23
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      Quote Originally Posted by chillg8r View Post
      I suspect that an easy and relatively inexpensive upgrade would be to just swap out the the HK speakers in the front of the cabin (front doors and dash)with B&W speakers. Unless I missed something they would be plug n play and drop in?

      You wouldn’t end up with “the B&W system“ but you might get a significant upgrade wrt to detail and center staging without too much effort or technical expertise.


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      Already did that.

      This is a multi-phased project.

      Phase 1: Replace/Add the mid-range and tweeters with B&W. I've done that now for all but the mid-range door speakers for the rear doors. I have the speakers, but the door panel harness is on back order until the end of the month.

      Phase 2: Install the new B&W amp prior to next servicing and have the dealer run the AUD (amp) reload software, and cross my fingers that it recognizes and updates the AUD software. If that doesn't work, then it means having to use a B&W amp from a wrecked car that already has the correct AUD software loaded on it. New amps come without the correct software and have some sort of "base" software used for internal QC before shipment. You have to run the AUD reload software from VIDA before it will correctly operate in whichever car it's put in. But, I read that others with pre-SPA cars that tried installing the Dynamic audio system would run into a situation where upon running the AUD reload VIDA would notify that it was the incorrect hardware for the vehicle and would not install the appropriate software. But, like I said, using an amp from a wrecked car would circumvent the need for running the AUD reload, and instead would just update the software as usual when running the normal service 2.0 updates.

      Phase 3: Replace the 4 woofers in the doors and the subwoofer with the B&W equivalents. Absolutely have to do this after the B&W amp is in place, because otherwise I don't think the HK amp is up to the task of supplying enough power at higher volumes.

      TBD on whether the concert hall part of the Sound Experience app will be updated as part of the AUD reload. But even if it's not, that's not a huge loss, as the HK system Sound Experience app has everything else.

    26. #24
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      Base, Harman Kardon, and B&W wiring

      Quote Originally Posted by nbvolks View Post
      Already did that.

      This is a multi-phased project.

      Phase 1: Replace/Add the mid-range and tweeters with B&W. I've done that now for all but the mid-range door speakers for the rear doors. I have the speakers, but the door panel harness is on back order until the end of the month.

      Phase 2: Install the new B&W amp prior to next servicing and have the dealer run the AUD (amp) reload software, and cross my fingers that it recognizes and updates the AUD software. If that doesn't work, then it means having to use a B&W amp from a wrecked car that already has the correct AUD software loaded on it. New amps come without the correct software and have some sort of "base" software used for internal QC before shipment. You have to run the AUD reload software from VIDA before it will correctly operate in whichever car it's put in. But, I read that others with pre-SPA cars that tried installing the Dynamic audio system would run into a situation where upon running the AUD reload VIDA would notify that it was the incorrect hardware for the vehicle and would not install the appropriate software. But, like I said, using an amp from a wrecked car would circumvent the need for running the AUD reload, and instead would just update the software as usual when running the normal service 2.0 updates.

      Phase 3: Replace the 4 woofers in the doors and the subwoofer with the B&W equivalents. Absolutely have to do this after the B&W amp is in place, because otherwise I don't think the HK amp is up to the task of supplying enough power at higher volumes.

      TBD on whether the concert hall part of the Sound Experience app will be updated as part of the AUD reload. But even if it's not, that's not a huge loss, as the HK system Sound Experience app has everything else.
      So what improvement did you notice after phase one? Was it as significant as i suspect?

      Nice write up, very helpful.


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      Last edited by chillg8r; 01-11-2020 at 12:27 PM.
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    27. #25
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      Quote Originally Posted by chillg8r View Post
      So what improvement did you notice after phase one? Was it as significant as i suspect?

      Nice write up, very helpful.


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      Thanks, yeah, so with only doing the mid-ranges and the tweeters, the main thing was a perceived increase in sound clarity. I did the center dash and doors before Christmas and when listening to traditional Christmas music with choir singing and bands, the cymbals and higher pitched choir points sound very sharp/crisp. We're not talking a night and day difference, but definitely an improvement. I'd say the greatest improvement comes from the addition of the center channel tweeter. The HK system has the mid-range there, but the addition of the tweeter makes the sound presentation SPOT ON. What I mean, is that whether you're sitting in the passenger seat or the driver's seat the front channel sound (particularly vocals) feels as if it's centered directly in front of you. And I mean in front of your seating position, not in front of you centered on the dash. Without the center dash tweeter, I think the system struggles a bit to do this with the tweeters in each door, and the sound ends up feeling like it's coming from the center of the dash. (sorry if this doesn't make sense, it's hard to accurately describe.)

      I can't yet comment on the difference with the rear headliner speakers swapped out, as I did that quickly then handed the car off to my wife. So will have to comment on any perceived benefit of those at a later time.

    28. #26
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      Quote Originally Posted by nbvolks View Post
      Thanks, yeah, so with only doing the mid-ranges and the tweeters, the main thing was a perceived increase in sound clarity. I did the center dash and doors before Christmas and when listening to traditional Christmas music with choir singing and bands, the cymbals and higher pitched choir points sound very sharp/crisp. We're not talking a night and day difference, but definitely an improvement. I'd say the greatest improvement comes from the addition of the center channel tweeter. The HK system has the mid-range there, but the addition of the tweeter makes the sound presentation SPOT ON. What I mean, is that whether you're sitting in the passenger seat or the driver's seat the front channel sound (particularly vocals) feels as if it's centered directly in front of you. And I mean in front of your seating position, not in front of you centered on the dash. Without the center dash tweeter, I think the system struggles a bit to do this with the tweeters in each door, and the sound ends up feeling like it's coming from the center of the dash. (sorry if this doesn't make sense, it's hard to accurately describe.)

      I can't yet comment on the difference with the rear headliner speakers swapped out, as I did that quickly then handed the car off to my wife. So will have to comment on any perceived benefit of those at a later time.
      Makes perfect sense and,imo, predictable.

      It’s been my experience that if your into rap or loud rock n roll that adding a well powered sub will give you the best bang for the buck but if you’re into jazz, r&b, rock at moderate levels with an interest in staging and clarity that upgrading front speakers will improve the sound the most.

      Of course it’s best if you can do it all as it all matters and contributes; amps, preamps, Speakers, cables, sound deadening etc. but if a Volvo owner wants to easily improve on the HK system we now know, because of your work, that they can easily change out the fronts with great effect.

      I have the B&W in my XC90 and I’d consider upgrading the HK system in my S60 if I planned on keeping the car past 2021 or if I drove it more.


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      Making the same project on my XC60 MY20 with HK PRO.

      Did already:
      - replaced central speaker with grill.
      - replaced mid-range speakers in front doors.
      - replaced twitters in front doors
      - replaced twitters in rear doors (there are no mids in rear doors, only twitter and woofer, moreover, same wire/channel used for rear doors, for woofer and twitter)
      Wiring is the same for HK pro and B&W in XC60, only speakers and amp are different.

      Even after speakers upgrade, having HK Pro amp, is better than it was.

      Thinking now if to proceed further or leave it as it is if yes, next step is B&W amp, and later woofers update.

      Quote Originally Posted by nbvolks View Post
      Already did that.

      This is a multi-phased project.

      Phase 1: Replace/Add the mid-range and tweeters with B&W. I've done that now for all but the mid-range door speakers for the rear doors. I have the speakers, but the door panel harness is on back order until the end of the month.

      Phase 2: Install the new B&W amp prior to next servicing and have the dealer run the AUD (amp) reload software, and cross my fingers that it recognizes and updates the AUD software. If that doesn't work, then it means having to use a B&W amp from a wrecked car that already has the correct AUD software loaded on it. New amps come without the correct software and have some sort of "base" software used for internal QC before shipment. You have to run the AUD reload software from VIDA before it will correctly operate in whichever car it's put in. But, I read that others with pre-SPA cars that tried installing the Dynamic audio system would run into a situation where upon running the AUD reload VIDA would notify that it was the incorrect hardware for the vehicle and would not install the appropriate software. But, like I said, using an amp from a wrecked car would circumvent the need for running the AUD reload, and instead would just update the software as usual when running the normal service 2.0 updates.

      Phase 3: Replace the 4 woofers in the doors and the subwoofer with the B&W equivalents. Absolutely have to do this after the B&W amp is in place, because otherwise I don't think the HK amp is up to the task of supplying enough power at higher volumes.

      TBD on whether the concert hall part of the Sound Experience app will be updated as part of the AUD reload. But even if it's not, that's not a huge loss, as the HK system Sound Experience app has everything else.

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