Lanson's Sound Quality build - 2017 Crew - Chevy Colorado & GMC Canyon
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post #1 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 09:48 PM Thread Starter
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Lanson's Sound Quality build - 2017 Crew

The first step was measuring the acoustic response of the factory system Acoustic Measurement Thread - Stock Colorado Base sound system (6 speaker)

Now that this portion is complete, the build can begin. First, the equipment list so far:

Stock head unit, we'll see if it is any good after some tune time
Processor - Helix V-Eight. This provides me 10 channels of DSP and 75W x 8 power in one unit.
Subwoofer amp - Arc KS 500.1 Mini
Subwoofers - Image Dynamics ID8 pair
Front woofers in the door - Image Dynamics X69
Front dash speakers - Audible Physics AR3-A wide-banders
Front tweeters - Audible Physics AR20

Pulled apart the rear seat area first, man getting those seats out was annoying (looong bolts)



Back panel pulled


Rear panel raw and clean (simple diluted degreaser is what I use)


Its a truck, so the interior panels can go in the bed during the teardown. I laid down some moving blankets to keep things scratch-free


I'm impressed with the factory carpet quality, including the foam backing


I decided to try a new deadener. I usually use Knu Konceptz Kolossus which is some exceptional stuff. However I was in the mood to try something different so I ordered Reckhorn ABX from Amazon. I would say it competes with Knu Konceptz lower grade stuff, as far as quality, weight, thickness, etc. But so far its been a pleasure to work with. Gloves are smart if you're going to be running your hand over it, as the foil is razor-sharp.




I laid a bit of deadener on the plastic rear panel

Rear panel readied, can't mount it yet because the rear side panels tuck in behind it
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'17 Crew V6, Build log of sound system / Build log of rest of truck modifications
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post #2 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 10:04 PM Thread Starter
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I pulled the factory head unit, noticed right away the connectors are different than expected. Looks like there's changes for 2017


I then used a "Euro barrier strip" to connect the speaker outputs to my processor.


Head unit back in.


Decided to take a break from the head unit, to look at how the doors will get wired. And then I noticed there's a molex in the way. Yep, this door isn't getting a speaker wire upgrade..

Its just too complicated to work with


So that went right back together


I pulled the A-pillars and top dash panel, took a look at the factory speakers. They look to be something like a 2" or 2.5" type paper speaker. This isn't really too bad for factory.

Factory mounting


The mounting hole is about 2.7" diameter


This is the Audible Physics AR3-A wide-bander. And it will need a bit more space than the factory speaker, unfortunately!


'17 Crew V6, Build log of sound system / Build log of rest of truck modifications

Last edited by LansonF; 03-04-2017 at 10:41 PM.
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post #3 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 10:18 PM Thread Starter
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The speaker diameter is about 2.50"

The factory speaker is about 1.5" deep (including flange)


The AR3-A is about the same depth


The magnet diameter is pretty large, so this will need some work to fit


I had to pull the whole damn dash! It wasn't too bad but there were some pucker moments



I took a break from the insanity of pulling the entire dash, and decided to run the power wire. I needed something easy to do for a while. Best spot bar-none is the rubber grommet right above the accelerator pedal.

I'm using 4 gauge Radaflex welding cable. My system plans call for a modest amount of power so 4 gauge should suffice. Radaflex is an absolutely awesome copper cable, and I high recommend using it in audio builds. The cable is sheathed in red techflex

I ran the cable down the driver's side

Next up I built connectors for my front speakers. These are XT60 type. I really like using these for audio builds, and I buy them in bulk.


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post #4 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 10:23 PM Thread Starter
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I realized with the door molex being what it is, I won't be able to run the tweeters in the door sail panel area like I was hoping to. So plan B is to use the pillars. I cut some holes and got to it

I got them pretty even I think. That's always a gamble


The whole damn dash


This is the factory mounting area, marked off for cutting


I trimmed the whole and then the mounting tabs, and my AR3-A's fit right in


Tomorrow, I'll try to finish up the front dash and pillar area, and we'll see what else gets done.
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post #5 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 11:01 PM
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I did a ton of work to my stereo system but still havent done the front dash speakers yet. As for the door molex, I actually did the 2 rear doors, using a dremel to burrow a hole thorough the molex. Sadly, the front doors were a no-go due to, couldnt get the molex open on the passenger side.

Here is wishing you the best along the way.

PS, if you have the dash panel still off, can you take some pix of the in-side of it? I have to remove mine in the near future and that might help.

2005 5 cyl, Black on Black, 4 door
2016 Z71, Black, Long Box, 4 door
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post #6 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 11:40 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Toughsox View Post
I did a ton of work to my stereo system but still havent done the front dash speakers yet. As for the door molex, I actually did the 2 rear doors, using a dremel to burrow a hole thorough the molex. Sadly, the front doors were a no-go due to, couldnt get the molex open on the passenger side.

Here is wishing you the best along the way.

PS, if you have the dash panel still off, can you take some pix of the in-side of it? I have to remove mine in the near future and that might help.
Sure, mostly you can't forget the two airbag bolts (and connector), that slowed me down a while. Its a crap-ton of bolts for the whole dash. I also dropped a 7mm Kobalt socket down in one of the defrost vents. I pray that doesn't rattle, because there's no chance whatsoever of retrieving that, short of pulling the entire HVAC unit apart (a day job in itself.) Give me details on what other pics you need, and I'll try to get it done.

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post #7 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-04-2017, 11:46 PM
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Originally Posted by LansonF View Post
Sure, mostly you can't forget the two airbag bolts (and connector), that slowed me down a while. Its a crap-ton of bolts for the whole dash. I also dropped a 7mm Kobalt socket down in one of the defrost vents. I pray that doesn't rattle, because there's no chance whatsoever of retrieving that, short of pulling the entire HVAC unit apart (a day job in itself.) Give me details on what other pics you need, and I'll try to get it done.
Funny you mention the HVAC unit, as thats exactly what I have to remove once the weather breaks. I have the 2016 with the broken door on the left side, and knowing the dash has to be taken down to the firewall, the front pad is really the only main component I was concerned about, for cosmetic reasons, naturally.

2005 5 cyl, Black on Black, 4 door
2016 Z71, Black, Long Box, 4 door
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post #8 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 05:36 AM
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Originally Posted by LansonF View Post
Sure, mostly you can't forget the two airbag bolts (and connector), that slowed me down a while. Its a crap-ton of bolts for the whole dash. I also dropped a 7mm Kobalt socket down in one of the defrost vents. I pray that doesn't rattle, because there's no chance whatsoever of retrieving that, short of pulling the entire HVAC unit apart (a day job in itself.) Give me details on what other pics you need, and I'll try to get it done.
Try a magnet on a string.
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post #9 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 09:27 PM Thread Starter
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Try a magnet on a string.
Success came from a Kobalt magnet picker-upper thing shoved into the defrost vent. I heard the ultra-satisfying "clink" and knew my butt was saved.

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post #10 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-05-2017, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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Time for an update

Started with the rest of the dash this morning, just cut the other side so my mids would fit


Also had to cut the remaining part of the dash still in the truck, just used a box-cutter and took my time



Decided to deaden the dash, why not, right?


Dash went back on without a hitch


AR3-A widebanders prepped for installation.



I stuffed the inside of the speaker holes with thick radiant barrier, and lined the outside with Ensolite


Mounting was easy, other than needing to use a screwdriver bit in my hand to fasten the screws closest to the windshield. Got some sore fingers but that's it




I added more Ensolite to make a type of cup up against the speaker and the top dash panel





Mounted the tweeter in the A-pillar, only one got done so far, but I think it looks pretty good





Next up, gotta finish the pillars and get the front stage wiring ran to the amp rack-to-be.
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post #11 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-06-2017, 12:24 PM
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High quality build here, I like your connector ideas for the breakout at the radio and to the speakers. You posting this up on DIYMA as well? Subscribed!
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post #12 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-06-2017, 12:28 PM Thread Starter
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High quality build here, I like your connector ideas for the breakout at the radio and to the speakers. You posting this up on DIYMA as well? Subscribed!
Yep, simulcasting on DIYMA. I've been a member there forever.

I lost a damn tweeter, now I've got that to deal with.

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post #13 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-06-2017, 04:51 PM
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I heard the ultra-satisfying "clink" and knew my butt was saved.
wait, I thought it was in the vents!! hahahahaha.
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post #14 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-06-2017, 04:55 PM
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I love reading audio build threads! Subbed for updates.

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post #15 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 12:12 AM Thread Starter
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Minor update for the evening, decided to take a crack at one of the doors while I'm waiting for a tweeter

First off, the OEM manual for 2017 at least is off on how the truck goes together, or at least my WT model. Not sure about the others, but it pointed to access spots and things I don't have, so that made things tricky. Second, the majority of the plastics in this car have proven to be excellent quality, but these door parts are painted and super easy to scratch, even with the proper plastic panel tools. I always try very hard to leave no evidence I've of work on the panels, but these pieces are showing a bit of scuffing (will show as I go)

This panel must be popped up. All edges scratch even with plastic tools, so I found the best spot to be at the back, by the pad. It WILL sound like you are breaking it, notice the scuffs around the edges, minor little nicks but the tools, even my thinnest plastic popper, had a hard time getting a grip.


That part pries off, and you can see this inside.


So next, this side panel has to come off. This proved very tricky


Side panel came off, had to not only pry, but also carefully nudge each clip out with the pry tool, by pressing inside the metal clip.


The issue I think is the metal clips have a lock feature, which is this little piece of metal that jambs itself and locks against the other panel, right in the middle of the clip on the top, and bottom. This part did not want to come off, but it must to access the bolts holding the door. Again, none of these bolts are shown in the OEM manual.


These two bolts must come out


Next problem, the top of the door panel did not want to release at all. Again in the manual, it just says pull, shows a few clips but ignores the top. Not sure if I was supposed to or not, but I lifted UP and with lots of pressure, released the actual window liner part along with the door panel. It fought hard to stay on


I noted that the factory speaker has indentations from the door panel, around a foam gasket. This means I need to build a replacement baffle that ends up almost exactly as tall as the factory speaker and spacer, and then add my own foam gasket. Sometimes its not clear how tall to build a baffle, this time I know precisely.


Inside the door has a sorry excuse for deadening. Looks like it was literally slapped on, and the e-coat or seal coat or whatever that goes in the door went over that



Bare metal underneath!



Because of the bare metal issue, I made sure to cover these spots completely with deadener, which will preserve it. Using the last of my KnuKonceptz Kolossus here, split what I had left in two for the other door when its time. Knu Kolossus is better than the Reckhorn I bought to try, but more expensive and heavy. However if I were doing it all over again, I'd just get more Kolossus and skip the Reckhorn. Its not bad, but its not Kolossus! There is about a sheet and a half inside each door's inner shell, placed strategically.


The rest of my Reckhorn was used on the outer shell. Despite not being as thick and dead as the Knu, Reckhorn has a thick aluminum foil top so it helps fill holes. I added some indentation as I was covering these holes, because the plastic door panel looks like it sinks in just a bit, so I didn't want a massive clearance problem when the door goes back together


The door panel itself didn't seem very resonant in the tap and knocking tests, and it also has good reinforcement all over, so just tiny dabs of deadener across a couple panels was all I felt it needed.


Now this might need some trimming, but I decided to glue on 1/4" Neoprene I got from an order at foamsbymail. We'll see how it goes, I still need to tidy up some holes and build the baffle and foam around that, but this stuff really feels good so far.


I added some very thick, robust foam behind the speaker mount area, it is a gym mat type of closed cell PCV/NBR, figured it may help dissipate the rear wave some.


That's it for now, just a couple hours after work is all I get in the week days.
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post #16 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 06:36 AM
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post #17 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Yeah a yoga mat may work. The foam I used was Gym Rubber - Rubber flooring, closed-cell foam exercise mat in 3/8", ordered a 96"x24" on that. And the Neoprene, ordered 1/8" and 1/4", full sheets, and free shipping when I put all that together, so that was a huge plus. So far, so good with this stuff.

I want to talk about this deadener stuff for a minute.

If you haven't noticed, I've been experimenting with a new type of deadener on the market. It is Reckhorn ABX, which comes in at ~80mil thickness and has a particularly thick top foil, which is embossed with a hexagonal type pattern. My comparison product is Knu Konceptz Kolossus, which is a super-thick ~100mil type product, and has been reviewed consistently as one of the best deadeners (CLD Constrained Layer Damper) available at ANY price. However, I'm always up for trying something new so when I saw the Reckhorn on sale at Amazon, I decided to give it a shot.

Now, my experience with CLD type products are many. Throughout my life, I've tried old Dynamat from back in the day (the asphalt stuff we started with before we knew better), Dynamat Xtreme (the modern butyl product today), old messy RAAMMAT BXT, new butyl BXTII, GTMAT Quadro (a joke product), Onyx (a worse joke), Knu Kolossus, now Reckhorn ABX, SDS tiles, and a handful of other stuff like Stinger and NVX just in samples. Of them, SDS and Knu are absolute king. If shipping SDS didn't cost me so much due to being on the other side of the states, I'd handily use it over other stuff, as it is pretty good value AND a top performer.

So now, a recommendation. For this truck, I would recommend ordering a full box of Knu Kolossus. I'm not a 100% coverage kind of guy with deadener, but I do like to work around the 30-40% range give or take. Kolossus works with this really nicely. The Reckhorn is just less substantial of a product, so it takes more coverage to get near Kolossus in performance. A single 35 sq foot "car pack" should do it. I say that because I ordered the 21.5 sq ft roll of Reckhorn, and I had 3 sheets of Kolossus left over from my Durango build, so that's about 30 sq. feet total. Also, the Reckhorn, despite the good price, leaves too much bare foil on the edges (parallel to the way it is rolled up), its like 1/3" per side. So you take this roll and have these edges that don't really do anything. I've been trimming them off. So that makes ~2/3" of lost material total as you use it, meaning you are getting a little less product than 21.5 sq ft, probably closer to 20 sq ft. At ~$60 it was still a good value, and definitely is not junk. Another product I want to try is SoundQubed's mat, as SQ is a pretty good value-for-money type brand. Other than that, I'd probably stick with Knu Kolossus. I bet Knu's lower line, their Resonance Control series, is a lot like Reckhorn.


Anyway, rapping on the door with my knuckle, its pretty doggone dead. Knu Kolossus has a really good effect on skins like this. It doesn't make noise other than the initial impact of my knuckles and that's what we want. If I have to get back in the door and add more deadener, I will...but I will dread doing that given this door's unwillingness to come apart. Also until some of my old gear sells off (Arc amp, AE sub, Audio Dev speakers), my budget is shot since I had to re-order the tweeters for this setup (lost one while cleaning up my garage...fml!..edit... that or one day I'll probably find it at the bottom of one of my kid's toyboxes, knowing how things go around my house.)

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post #18 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-09-2017, 07:21 PM
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Nice build.

This is relevant to me particularly the deadener.

The sound in my '16 Canyon SLT CCSB isn't close (maybe 7/10ths to be generous) to the sound of my old '14 Silverado LTZ, both are BOSE. Don't know the exact specs on each BOSE system but I figure a big difference is that the Canyon has thinner interior panels and less deadening than the Silverado. The cabin of the Silverado is huge compared to the Canyon so I really expected more from the Canyon. The difference in plastic panels is huge and most apparent in the door cards. My Canyon is a diesel so there is supposed to be added deadening in the firewall, floors etc. , does a good job tho in that regard as in lessening engine noise.

I'm not about to change out the BOSE just yet but may address the deadening issue first.

Great info, thanks for sharing the build.

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post #19 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-10-2017, 01:04 AM Thread Starter
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Ok so small update via phone here.

I sacked up and ordered a new box of Kolossus. Amazon had it priced with free shipping so that's what I did. I'll use this to go over the doors a tiny bit more, do the rear doors, and add a little more coverage on the floor and back wall.

I got my replacement tweeters in and installed the driver pillar, so the front dash stage parts are done. Can add a pic or two around a pc later.

Ran into trouble with the factory positive battery terminal, trying to unscrew the mounting bolt all the way so I could add a ring terminal. Stripped the damn thing. Ordered a mil spec type terminal and will remake the setup from the terminal to the integrated main fuse pack. Just an annoyance.

Oh and I ordered the Metra 6x9 adapter baffles. I'll see if they are good enough but they were only 10 bucks while doing my other Amazon order.

Now we wait some more

edit: added some pics


And this is the damn battery cable that will need to be replaced. Stupid design, the nut won't fully back off (on mine at least), and it stripped. A mil-spec one will replace this junker.

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Last edited by LansonF; 03-10-2017 at 12:57 PM.
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post #20 of 119 (permalink) Old 03-10-2017, 07:46 AM
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Love the build thread! I used to sell car audio about 15 years ago, and had some crazy installs in my cars back then (full SPL competition style systems) back when Dynamat was the go-to deadener. Now, with a family, I can't do the same type of audio builds, but want better sound than stock (not going for a SQ set up, but a decent balance would be nice).

I'll be following along to see how this turns out, and maybe copy a small portion of what you do.
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