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E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
22-03-2015, 06:20 AM
Post: #1
E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Hi Guys

This is my first time posting an Audio thread, Im a little clueless when it comes to sound though im willing to learn.

I Have a Harman Kardon system from an E46 individual that I would like to retro fit into my E46 which has the standard sound system.

I know , iv heard many time that its to costly , time consuming , not worth the effort, there are better aftermarket replacements speakers out there etc etc but I have the system and have the time , So would like to fit it to my car .
Also... I really prefer keeping my car as original as possible , I have heard the system in another car and its more then enough for me.

This is what I have .

Complete wiring harness , all doors (in fact I have the complete door harness for each door) as well as the main wiring loom that goes from the head unit to the amp .
10 speakers including the two subs with the little amp
Main amp that fits below the CD shuttle
Spatulizer Button and console that goes onto the dash.

To my knowledge ,
I am missing the two speakers that sit on the rear shelf.

I'm not sure if there's anything else missing , though if there is , i can easily get it .


Can you guys tell me , How exactly does the system "hook up"

Iv layed out the complete system, attaching each piece to their respective wires and everything does fit .

How does the system get its power? Is it fed from the head? If so should there be a wire going from the head unit connector (plastic piece that attaches to the head) to the fuse box?

How does the amp get its power? Is there supposed to be a wire going from the amp to the fuse box? Or a wire going directly to the battery ?

As im missing the two speakers from the shelf , Can I use my existing "standard" shelf speakers in their place?

The car that this system was removed from , had a blutooth attached to the loom as well as a sub, ( im going to have to remove these wires and clean up the loom , thankfully non of the wires were cut .

Any help on my new venture would be really appreciated.

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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22-03-2015, 06:28 AM (This post was last modified: 22-03-2015 06:29 AM by Ratslaaf.)
Post: #2
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Shjo, ambitious project but nevertheless worthwhile! I have no idea where the wires should go, but in a case like this I would either have a look at Ista/D or look at WDS online. It'll take some digging using WDS, but if you have the VIN of the donor car this would help a lot. Because you have the loom, most of the game is won.

If you can send me the donor VIN I might also be able to assist. I'm not sure if this was a retrofit option, but if it was, there might also be a Tech Bulletin showing you how to install it.

Ta,

PMs don’t work, so if I don’t reply I’m not being rude.
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22-03-2015, 06:50 AM
Post: #3
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Thanks soo much for your quick reply Ratslaaf , It may be a challenge but im up for it.

I do have the cars VIN , Last digits are NG53272 , It was an E46 320i individual , with the Harman Kardon package added as an option , so factory fitted option on its list. This car did not come with the Bluetooth , thus i figured the Previous owner fitted an aftermarket piece to it.

I dont think the Harman Kardon package was available as a retrofit ( I could be wrong though)
Where can One find a Tech Bulletin on this?

I tried reading up on the WDS , but couldn't truly understand it that well.

I know I have most if not all of the loom , but I cant help but feel im missing something , Just cant figour out how the system would be powered up. Apart from two loose wires coming off the amp (connector) The system seems closed.


(22-03-2015 06:28 AM)Ratslaaf Wrote:  Shjo, ambitious project but nevertheless worthwhile! I have no idea where the wires should go, but in a case like this I would either have a look at Ista/D or look at WDS online. It'll take some digging using WDS, but if you have the VIN of the donor car this would help a lot. Because you have the loom, most of the game is won.

If you can send me the donor VIN I might also be able to assist. I'm not sure if this was a retrofit option, but if it was, there might also be a Tech Bulletin showing you how to install it.

Ta,

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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22-03-2015, 08:36 AM
Post: #4
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
AFAIK, The Head-Unit feeds the amplifier a balanced differential input. The amplifier then provides power, crossover and equalisation to each speaker such that there are no seperate crossovers in the car, the amplifier does it all.

I really suggest you look at a stealth install of aftermarket components. Its simple enough to install aftermarket components without seeing anything. Take a look at my threads on my e46 car audio build, besides the subwoofer and amplifier in the trunk, there is absolutely nothing in my cabin that looks out of place.

I too love a stock look, but I would be hesitant to put as much work as is required by your project into an audio install where the end product will unlikely justify the time spent.

If you are still adamant about this build, good luck!

Current:
2005 BMW E60 525i M-Sport Titanium Silver (Manual)
Race Car Build:
2001 BMW E46 330i Titanium Silver (See Here )
In Progress:
BMW K75 Café Racer (See Here)
Previous:
1991 BMW E34 520i Calypso Red
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Spiro
22-03-2015, 12:42 PM
Post: #5
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
My 325i has the HK option. It is better than the standard system but not great. An aftermarket upgrade would be a better option.

But I admire your go-getter attitude. Good luck with the project!

Not sure that it would work out without the HK rear shelf speakers, though. The HK amp might be too powerful for the standard ones.

Present BMWs:
'89 735i Auto
'01 325i Manual
'02 530i Manual
Past BMWs:
'79 520 Manual, '97 328i Manual, '97 528i Auto, '98 318is Manual
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22-03-2015, 01:49 PM
Post: #6
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
hey man... welcome to our Forum...


your project was just like the one i set out when i just got my e46... nonetheless... i have all(most) of the items now lying in random parts of my house... and some up for sale...


if you have time it's ok, BUT.... the amount of work vs. the amount of sound... naa...

i exercised the option and went aftermarket.... upgraded drivers, amps, all other small bits, but kept the look, still OEM, and all Visual items remained OEM...

i would say, fit the factory amp, at least, and change all the drivers, do not use the BMW Speakers... even the HK setup was not even premium level stuff...

if you need any other info... please PM me....


Groovy

CoolShakeCoolShakeCoolShake
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zippy320
22-03-2015, 04:16 PM
Post: #7
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Thanks so much for the encouragement guys! I really appreciate it. I am going ahead with this project, Just want to make sure that I have everything and ever single part and installation procedure in place before I tackle the job .

I have the standard 6 speaker system , I must admit , Its not alll that terrible , but it is aging, The drivers arnt damaged or torn , but after listening to the HK system in another E46 and being in a friends 4 series GC almost daily , I cant help but notice that my system is lacking something , as if the sound dosnt really fill the cabin or have that "Sparkel"

@Spiro , Thats exactly what I was thinking as well, If for some reason im unhappy with the setup once everything is installed , I could change out the drivers if needed,, in that way , I would still have all the wiring in place , the amp fitted etc. I still prefer to keep everything original .

I just cant figure out , how does the system gets its power? Where does it pull its 12v current to power up the system , Is there a separate wire going from the back of the head unit to the fuse box? there are two separate fuses for the Radio . Do I unclip that from the back of my existing 6 speaker loom and attach it to this new loom? ( Im going to keep my existing loom in the car .)

Or should there be a wire going from the amp to the battery in the boot?

And where does that spatulizer button connect to? Is it a direct connection to the cars loom itself? or the Amp? If to the car , how does that then talk to the radio?

Im going to have a look at the doner car again on monday hopefully , and see if iv missed anything.

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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22-03-2015, 04:35 PM
Post: #8
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
http://www.scribd.com/mobile/doc/200108745

___
Current:
2011 E70 LCI X5 40d XDrive
2009 E90 330d lci MSport
- Xcede SW + Xflow DP & Exhaust
- N54 Intercooler
- XHP Gearbox Flash
2003 E46 330d

EX:
2007 Polo 1.4 trendline
2006 E90 320d
2007 E90 320d msport Promotec + DP
2012 E70 LCI X5 3.0d XDrive
2009 Jeep Wrangler Saraha Unlimited
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zippy320
22-03-2015, 05:55 PM
Post: #9
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
(22-03-2015 12:42 PM)Maljan Wrote:  My 325i has the HK option. It is better than the standard system but not great. An aftermarket upgrade would be a better option.

But I admire your go-getter attitude. Good luck with the project!

Not sure that it would work out without the HK rear shelf speakers, though. The HK amp might be too powerful for the standard ones.

I agree. HK is miles better than standard but it's not the greatest. If you're the type that likes a sound system that packs a punch HK isn't the best option, it does have good clarity though. I'm in the process of upgrading my HK system now with a ski-pass sub.

[Image: 53b27b4d-a12e-41be-8670-930e78e95fcd_zpsqhwljevx.jpg]

Current: E46 328i, E87 120i, E70 xdrive35d, RRS '11.

Ex: E30 318i, E36 318i, E36 325i, E34 520i, E39 520i, E53 4.4i, E65 745i, E60 525i, E60 545i, E90 330d, E83 3.0sd, E92 M3, E60 530i, F10 530d.

Reppin' Malawi - The Warm Heart of Africa
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zippy320
22-03-2015, 05:58 PM (This post was last modified: 22-03-2015 05:59 PM by Ratslaaf.)
Post: #10
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Sorry man, I know you struggling. I've not had a gap to look into it for you.

The doc that Dieselfan posted should get you going tho.

PMs don’t work, so if I don’t reply I’m not being rude.
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24-03-2015, 12:30 AM
Post: #11
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Hi Guys!

@OppositeLockMT , Thanks for your input, thats exactly what I like , good clarity , not much of a punch sort of person , to much bass , loudness isnt for me . I listen to alot of instrumental , classical music so clarity is what I look for .

@DieselFan , Thanks for the link! I had actually downloaded this a few days ago , read it over , I believe these are instructions on retrofitting the HK system to a vehicle that had originally come with the 10 speaker Hi-Fi system .

Which would mean that that car had come with the Alpine Hi-Fi amp in the boot as well as all the little bits making up the 10 speaker system ,
Which would mean that as I have the complete HK system , I dont need to splice up the attachment going to the amp , or create a new harness to power the subs ( those two speakers under the rear shelf) Or try and power up the subs amp as it looks like that amp has a power wire going from the big amp to the small amp.

My problem is , I have the complete harness for the HK system , that is the wiring going to all the speakers including the subs , but havnt a clue as to how all of it is powered up , there does not seem to be any wire that should go to the fuse box or battery coming off the wiring harness. I would have assumed that there should be a wire going to the fuse box at least from the part of the harness that attaches to the back of the radio , as there is a power wire going from the harness to the amp.

The second problem is that spatuliser button that goes in the dash, no clue as to where that goes. I have the complete console as well.

im going to try and take out a picture of the complete harness laid out on the floor.

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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24-03-2015, 11:39 AM
Post: #12
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
If you are lucky, the HK wiring will plug into the existing harness, using plugs that are already there. If not, you are looking at quite a project.

Present BMWs:
'89 735i Auto
'01 325i Manual
'02 530i Manual
Past BMWs:
'79 520 Manual, '97 328i Manual, '97 528i Auto, '98 318is Manual
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24-03-2015, 01:35 PM (This post was last modified: 24-03-2015 01:38 PM by Maljan.)
Post: #13
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
This site has a lot of parts drawings. They list no fewer than eight different Harman Kardon wiring harnesses, each with a different part number. It changed between model and year. Uhoh.

http://parts.bmwofsouthatlanta.com/showA...lYear=2001

If you have the right one, it should just plug and play by the look of it. Only one way to find out and that is to start dismantling your car's interior. Fitting it is going to be a lot of work - lifting carpets, pulling off door cards etc. Perhaps even removing seats. Keep us posted. =)

Present BMWs:
'89 735i Auto
'01 325i Manual
'02 530i Manual
Past BMWs:
'79 520 Manual, '97 328i Manual, '97 528i Auto, '98 318is Manual
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24-03-2015, 01:54 PM
Post: #14
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Yup, I'm expecting it to be big, it was tough removing the loom and other pieces from the doner car, but am fully aware of the hurdles I may face, somewhat. I have the standard 6 speaker system.

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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25-03-2015, 11:31 AM (This post was last modified: 25-03-2015 11:37 AM by oda111.)
Post: #15
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Hello ! I'm glad to find someone who's in the same boat as I am when it comes to this project. I own a 318i coupe and plan to have the same upgrade from a regular 6 speaker sound sistem to hk. I've been searching the forums for a few months now, never found anyone doing this specific upgrade, almost everyone had some sort of previous hk or hifi remnants in their cars, thus making it a little easier to do the job and not helping me too much.
I'm waiting on my speakers and amp to ship, ordered it yesterday, so I don't have the things in front of me to try and figure stuff out, but I like the idea of doing the same project with someone else at the same time, I hope we can work together on this one.
Having said that, you were saying that you don't know how to power the amp, I'm thinking the solution is in the harness. I haven't had the time to look it up in detail, but I would say that the power lines are connected to the head unit, they should be around there somewhere. Once I get my hands on the wiring diagram I'll come back with more info. Btw,the power line is the red thicker one in the harness, and the ground is the little bolt on the amp shell, connected to the chassis.
As to how the whole powering on procedure works, I haven't the faintest yet, still need to do some more research, but I'm on it!
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zippy320
26-03-2015, 01:06 AM
Post: #16
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Hi Oda111

Thats great to hear! Im sure we could help each other out, I would have expected that there would be a few more people who have done this sort of project but it seems really scarce . Im having the same problem with finding info on this , the wds does not seem to help all that much as well, most if not all that I have come accross are people upgrading the HK system with aftermarket parts or people retrofitting the HK system into their already 10 speaker Hi-Fi package cars . I dont think many people in SA bothered with the 10 speaker system on an E46 , probably just went with the HK system .

Regarding the powering of the amp , I do see the wiring for power going from the Head unit to the amp , then from the Main amp to the Subs little amp.
But there should be some lead going from the Main harness to the car, There has to be a wire going from the harness to the battery terminal or maybe the fuse box .
I went out and double checked the donor car today and , I have taken everything off it , I have no idea how this system is powered up .

Im going to take a few pictures of what I have and will put them up for you to view .

I think the coup harness is a little different and the sub housing that attaches to the rear deck is as well . Maybe the amp is different as well though as my amp has a SEDAN sticker attached to it.

On my harness , Im going to have to neaten it up a little , Their seemed to have been a separate amp and sub attached to it , as well as a motorola bluetooth car kit as well , the Car it is still attached to the harness , I wonder if I could get it to work .

At present I have the standard 6 speaker package , With the BMW Ipod attachment , (removed the plug used for the 6 cd changer and replace it with the BMW Ipod harness) I will be doing the same to this harness.

Great to have you on board! haha

Current Cars
16 BMW F30 320i B48 LCI Automatic
02 BMW E46 318i N42 LCI Automatic
93 Mercedes Benz W124 E320 4 Door LCI Automatic
88 BMW E30 320I M20 LCI Automatic

Old cars
Hmm
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oda111
26-03-2015, 01:20 AM (This post was last modified: 26-03-2015 01:30 AM by oda111.)
Post: #17
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
I was thinking of using the existing wiring for my new setup, provided the power wire that goes in the head unit will not melt when powering both the amp and hu. That is a possible solution, and it lets you power on both of then at the same time.
Do the number of speakers differ on the sedan on the regular unit as opposed to the hk system? I'm talking just about the number of ports in the doors, because if you don't have to change the door panels and rear deck panel, you can still use the old wiring harness, and spare yourself the extra work of pulling out the upholstery in your car. You just need to take the wires from the back of the hu, lead them to the amp and then come back to the wires behind the hu that connect to the speakers. That's what I'm planning, if it makes any sense. I feel that removing the wires from all the doors, and putting new ones in will be more work and possibly more errors.
The spatialiser button wires go to the amp, still waiting on the schematics to figure out exactly how.
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26-03-2015, 12:39 PM
Post: #18
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Got mine from the stealers (Sandton auto) in 2007, can't remember the price but it was costly. Hope you come right.

[Image: image_2637974480.jpg]

[Image: 53b27b4d-a12e-41be-8670-930e78e95fcd_zpsqhwljevx.jpg]

Current: E46 328i, E87 120i, E70 xdrive35d, RRS '11.

Ex: E30 318i, E36 318i, E36 325i, E34 520i, E39 520i, E53 4.4i, E65 745i, E60 525i, E60 545i, E90 330d, E83 3.0sd, E92 M3, E60 530i, F10 530d.

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26-03-2015, 01:06 PM
Post: #19
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
(26-03-2015 12:39 PM)OppositeLockMT Wrote:  Got mine from the stealers (Sandton auto) in 2007, can't remember the price but it was costly. Hope you come right.

[Image: image_2637974480.jpg]
I think you posted in the wrong thread

___
Current:
2011 E70 LCI X5 40d XDrive
2009 E90 330d lci MSport
- Xcede SW + Xflow DP & Exhaust
- N54 Intercooler
- XHP Gearbox Flash
2003 E46 330d

EX:
2007 Polo 1.4 trendline
2006 E90 320d
2007 E90 320d msport Promotec + DP
2012 E70 LCI X5 3.0d XDrive
2009 Jeep Wrangler Saraha Unlimited
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26-03-2015, 01:28 PM
Post: #20
RE: E46 Harman Kardon system retrofit ..
Lol, busy morning. My bad.

[Image: 53b27b4d-a12e-41be-8670-930e78e95fcd_zpsqhwljevx.jpg]

Current: E46 328i, E87 120i, E70 xdrive35d, RRS '11.

Ex: E30 318i, E36 318i, E36 325i, E34 520i, E39 520i, E53 4.4i, E65 745i, E60 525i, E60 545i, E90 330d, E83 3.0sd, E92 M3, E60 530i, F10 530d.

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