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benjdow

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About benjdow

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  1. Thanks guys. Yes, I've come to the conclusion the DIY is not worth it on this one, don't know enough about AC systems. Thanks for the tips. My thing with taking it to the dealership for the repair and possibly getting GM to cover some of the bill is that they'll use the same AC Delco condenser that's proven to be of poor build quality. A lot of people have had their condenser go out on these trucks. I'm having trouble finding an aftermarket condenser that is a direct replacement....i.e., not one that will work, one that is identical in form, fit, and function.
  2. Here's my stereo install thread. It may help you with some ideas. I'm hoping to compete in the next IASCA sound quality challenge once I get a few rogue rattles sorted out.http://www.gm-trucks.com/forums/topic/174144-my-stereo-install/?fromsearch=1
  3. My AC conditions developed a pin hole leak along the seam/braze. The AC Delco condenser lasted just long enough to get me through the warranty period. I thought it was the AC to condenser line, but not the case, despite my truck not coming with the bracket that GM started adding to later models (thanks beta testers). The stealership quoted $1k to fix it...not happpening. Has anyone DIY'd a condenser replacement? Does the drier need to be replaced as well? Any recommendations on alternative condenser brands? Don't want to replace it with an equally inferior condenser.
  4. So grateful I came across this thread! Mine is doing the same thing, was thinking I was in for a crazy repair cost. Torqued them down, all is well. Thanks guys!
  5. Had my Texas Edition wheels stolen, feel your pain. They busted out my back window twice in 2 weeks. Once to find the rim lock key and a 2nd time to steal my stereo....after the back sliding window was just replaced. It was still on blocks when they busted out the back sliding window the 2nd time. It sucked, and was quite an ordeal, but in the end it worked out. I got the wheels and tires I really wanted. There's a lot of options to choose from when you have $4800 for wheels and tires....thanks to Chevy's outrageous replacement costs.
  6. Personally, I didn't think the install was difficult at all. I can take my head unit out in about 2 minutes. Pop the silver plastic piece off and remove for screws. Yes the factory backup camera can be integrated into the head unit that turns on when in reverse. You can also toggle to camera view with a touch of the button regardless if you're in reverse or not. I have the backup camera in the rearview mirror, so I left the factory camera alone. The head unit has 2 backup camera inputs. I'm in the midst of installing a 2nd camera on the roof, possibly on top of the 3rd brake light. This way I'll easily be able to see my blind spots with the 170 degree viewing angle.
  7. I'm not familiar with the features on the factory 8" screen, remote start, curb side mirrors, etc. so I can't say for sure if it would work with the head unit I have or others. I do know the PAC RP5-GM51 can be programmed for a number of things. Below are the features listed on their website. Retains OnStar Telematics system Retains front and rear park assist Retains all warning chimes (chime module included) Retains OEM Auxiliary Input Data controlled outputs for connection to your navigation radio; speed, reverse and E-brake status output wires Retains original steering wheel control functions with the new radio with no additional interface or programming needed Data controlled RAP accessory output Works right out of the box with most radio brands Keeps vehicle data-bus intact for service Interface can be quickly updated if needed from the PAC website using a PAC-UP USB adapter
  8. Here's what time alignment looks like on the head unit.
  9. I used 2 pieces of 1" x 3" wood running horizontally across the back wall. The wood is covered with sound dampener and mounted to the back wall with self tapping screws, the amps mount to the wood.
  10. I forgot to mention the integration piece in my original post. Yes, everything works, USB, OnStar, Bluetooth hands free calls, steering wheel control, etc. You will need a wiring interface. I have the PAC interface listed below, and the American International dash kit, which is much cleaner than the other dash kits on the market. http://www.crutchfield.com/S-3QqKv5kshgX/p_541RP5GM51/PAC-RP5-GM51-Wiring-Interface.html http://www.crutchfield.com/S-NAdfHbLn0nK/p_003GMK325B/American-International-GMK325BM-Dash-Kit.html
  11. Guys, I'm sorry. I didn't realize I had any responses or interest on this thread. I understand where you're coming from. Most people have never had the opportunity to listen to a well implemented sound quality oriented install. The vast majority of car audio shops do not know enough or care enough to install a high fidelity stereo. Car audio and audio in general is a science. I've always thought if you're smart enough to really understand it and implement it, then the chances are your profession is not car audio installation. Not to say there aren't great shops out there, they're just few and far between. In my case, my reasons for installing a sub and head unit are not the same as high school kids/ricers. What you're thinking of is people with a very loud sub that shakes things and overpowers all of their stock speakers. My sub is not capable of setting off car alarms, annoying neighbors, etc. What it is capable of, is articulately reproducing frequencies from 20hz to 80hz. The purpose of my head unit is not for flashy lights, but for the control it gives me over the speakers. For example, humans can hear a frequency range from 20hz to 20khz. I can tell my head unit what frequencies to assign the respective speakers. My sub plays 20hz to 80hz, mids 80hz to 2,500hz, and the tweeters from 2,500hz to 20,000hz. Another key feature is time alignment, and it makes a huge difference in sound quality. Music sounds good when you're directly centered between the 2 speakers, which is impossible to do unless you have a McLaren F1 where the drivers seat is in the center of the vehicle. Time alignment delays when a speakers plays which makes it as if you're sitting in the center of the vehicle. That turned out to be a longer than expected justification/explanation. Sorry.
  12. I live in San Antonio and shopped around for quotes to install my 2.5" RC level kit. The cheapest I got quoted was $350 and that's just labor. Finally I said F it, and did it myself. I bought a 20 ton bottle jack from Harbor Freight (which was a huge help) and used jack stands. All and all it was quite simple, just time consuming. If you're able bodied, capable of following simple instruction, and want to save some cash, I'd consider DIY. Otherwise, any mechanic shop should be able to do it. If they can't, they shouldn't be in business.
  13. Yeah, always been a fan of Sundown subs. A lot of sound quality oriented installs use hardware and raw driver brands that most consumers are unfamiliar with. Take the Silver Flutes for example, if someone offered to give me the Silver Flute 6.5 ($60/pair) or JL Audio's most expensive 6.5, I'd take the Silver Flutes. The same Silver Flute drivers are used in some very high end boutique loudspeakers, e.g., the $6k Gemme Tanto's
  14. Hi all, got my new stereo installed, figured I'd share. I bought my 2014 Silverado lightly used (9k miles) from a private seller. The previous owner had a custom stereo installed....in total he paid $4700 (have receipts) to a local stereo shop. I was astounded by the price and extremely underwhelmed with the performance. The midbass was nonexistent and the highs were piercing, to the point of being unbearable to listen to. Being somewhat of a DIY audio enthusiast, I had plans to redo the stereo. My truck got broken into, and the subs and head unit were stolen, which jump started my install. My goal was sound quality. I'm not trying to set off car alarms, I just wanted the most realistic reproduction of music that I could get within a reasonable budget. I got exactly what I wanted, and couldn't be any happier. Really goes to show that name brand and $$$ invested have no correlation to performance....wish you guys could hear it. Unfortunately I didn't get a lot of pics during the install. What it had: Head unit: Kenwood DDX771 Front Speakers: Alpine SPS-610c, components Rear Speakers: Alpine SPS-610, coaxials Subwoofers: (2) JL CP108LG-W3V3, 8" sub in ported JL box Amp for speakers: Rockford Fosgate Prime R250X4 Amp for subs: Rockford Fosgate What I replaced it with: -Pioneer AVH X5700bhs, $360 -Silver Flute 6.5 mids, $60/pair -NVX XSPTW tweets $100/pair -Sundown SD-3 10" sub $200 -Subthump box $120 -Autotek SX-475 on mids $60 -Boss C655 on tweets $80 -PPI ION 650.1 on Sub $108 -Power wire/Sound dampener, misc $200 $1300 The head unit is a crucial part of this stereo. It's one of the very few double dins that offer active crossovers. This is a 2 way active setup, meaning I don't have passive crossovers and I control the crossover points through the head unit. I installed a bypass so I can have full features without the parking brake engaged. I applied sound dampener on the outer and inner part of the door. I also sealed off the door with thin sheet metal covered with sound dampener. Closed cell foam was also applied. Sealing the door really gave me the midbass I was after. Here are the silver flutes. I made my own speaker adapter out of birch, and used sound dampener and modeling clay to reduce resonance in the door. You really don't even need a sub with these drivers. They will make the mirrors vibrate when you turn it up. Unfortunately I didn't get a pic of the tweeters. I'm in love with these NVX tweeters...they're actually rebranded SB acoustics tweeters. Here's a pic of the sub. I don't have a pic of the box. This is my first time ever purchasing a sub box. I've always built my own, but I didn't want to deal with all the angles I crap it needed to fit under the seat. I requested subthump redesign a box to accommodate the Sundown SD-3. The box was .9^ft and the Sundown calls for .5^ft (sealed), so I added some bracing to the inside of the box to reduce the internal volume. I love this sub...it's very tight and articulate...excellent sound quality sub IMO. This is where I installed the remote bass knob Here are the amps. I could've easily used one small footprint 4 channel amp for mids and highs, it was personal preference. I'm sure some of you will baulk at the Boss amp and maybe the Autotek. Both of these amps are 90's model amps, made in the US by Zed Audio, really good amps. I also installed mass loaded vinyl on the backwall. I have flowmasters, and I can barely hear them. This truck is like a coffin. I intentionally do not have speakers installed in the rear doors. Speakers in the rear ruin the sound stage unless properly applied...which is quite difficult to do. The head unit has an auto time alignment and eq function which is wonderful. All you have to do is plug in the mic and let it do it's thing....it works surprisingly well. Next on my agenda is to install a backup camera and possibly a front view camera. The head unit has 2 camera inputs, which is a nice feature.
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