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2012 EXL Stereo Build
This may sound extreme to some people, but I spend a lot of time behind the wheel. I have been known to drive 900 miles a day and listening to music just breaks up time.
The original plan was to keep the stock head unit (the cheap non-Navigational head unit) and just build on from there, so I installed the following:

Morel Hybrid 6 inch component speaker (fronts)
Morel Tempo 6" coax with external crossover (rear fill)
Audio Control LCQ-1 6 channel EQ factory interface module with accubass
Audio Control Matrix Plus 6-channel line driver
JL Audio HD 900/5 5 channel amplifier
JL Audio TW5 thin woofer

Basic Layout: The Morel drivers where mounted in the stock speakers locations. The JL Amp and Sub were mounted in the cubby/ headrest storage area. The JL Flat Sub is in a sealed box (just a bit smaller than JL recommends and yes it can pound out the bass).

After the installation and many hours tweaking the system overall sound was great except for two items.

FIRST: while the head unit was warming up/communicating with the rest of the Pilot you could hear and electronic noise through the newly installed drivers. After a few seconds of this noise it would clear up and sound good. This could have been overcome by a simple toggle switch, turning off the amp until the radio was up and running. I tried a delay turn on, but this would not delay the amp long enough so that idea was ditched. Auto Control also confirmed that the problem was with the Honda head unit and doubted that using a Clear Sweep would be any better.

SECOND: The stock head unit produced a “floor noise” that I could hear, the average person would say wow what a system. But I have had some fairly high end systems in the past I wanted that high end sound in the Pilot. This could not be overcome (I was asking just too much of the stock head unit).

My answer was to ditch the stock head unit in favor of a Kenwood KDC-X996 In-Dash CD Receiver and the Audio Control L QC. This unit has the navigation, time alignment and EQ settings to fine tune the system. The only problem was where to put it? The logical spot was where the stock unit is, so the disassembly started with a new custom made center dash. I hope to have this finished this weekend and will post pictures when done.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Sub & Amp Rack
 

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Not to knock you, but kudos on the build. Why use the lcq and matrix? have you considered grounding all units including head to same spot? also where are you getting your remote from? I'll be putting in an alpine amp with built in hi level input and report if I have the same noise.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
I used the LCQ as a "gateway" from stock speakers and this converts it to RCA's that plung in to the amp.

The Matrix Plus kicks the voltage up going to the amp an being able to turn the amp gains down (the voltage of the stock head unit is very low).

Since up grading to the Kenwood head unit I have removed the Auto Control LQC, I plan on keeping the Matrix Plus even thought the Kenwoods out put voltage is 5voilts. The matrix will boost that voltage up to around 9volts.

I have tried all different grounds with no positive effect. When Audio Control confirmed that the problem is not the install..... but the Honda radio, that is when I started looking for different options.
 

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since switching headunits has the noise been supressed or gone? 5v is more than enough...IMO. have u tried an antenna ground isolator for ****s and grins?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
To be honest I am still re-working the dash for the new Kenwood. Trust me this is not a ground issue. It is a signal that is going through the system, when you first turn on the stock radio and you see the "H" on the display, that is when most of the noise is at it's highest. I have had Auto Control and several other people go over the install (including one person that trains installers).

Most people would be very happy with the system I am replacing.... but there is always one person like me that is very picky or maybe just a pain in the A$$.
 

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Finally someone tackels the lastest gen sound system! Except, the exsisting "sub" was never touched? Was it disconnected? Or completely left alone?
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Finally someone tackels the lastest gen sound system! Except, the exsisting "sub" was never touched? Was it disconnected? Or completely left alone?
The sub was never touched..... but it was disconected from the system. I have mid-bass drivers in my Chevy kick pannels large than the Honda Sub.
 

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Where are you tapping the power for the new headunit and interface boxes? If you're using harness power have you tried to power it from the AMP power line (I assume you have a direct battery wire to run your JL Audio)

Sometime just relocating cables away from the noise source helps. Is the noise generated in the headunit or a interconnect cable or box?
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
The power for the Kenwood is not using any exsisting factory wires, all new power wires are seperate from the factory wires. Just like the speaker wires are new running from the amp to the speakers.

This is a complete re-work. The only thing that is or maybe used is the back-up camera.
 

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thank God I have a LX, with just a basic display...let's see if i can get it done for the weekend.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
thank God I have a LX, with just a basic display...let's see if i can get it done for the weekend.
May I ask what are you going to do? Remove the stock display or just and on to the stock head unit?

Do not forget the pictures... or it didn't happen :)
 

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just add on, like the look of stock. saw the pics of the russian honda pilot, it has the radio glass in black and red hazzard button.
 

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DMG,

How did replacing the HU affect the Bluetooth, rear camera and other display functions? Not sure what is controlled by the HU but do you lose everything? That would be a deal breaker for me. Were you able to interface the steering wheel controls with the new HU? How are you finding the noise when the engine drops to 4 or 3 cylinders with no ANC? Sorry for all the questions but I too am unhappy with the stock system in my EX-L. I was almost wishing I had sprung for the Touring because I am upgrading the stereo, adding roof rack and towing harness but I've read on another thread how unhappy many are with the Touring stereo as well. I just ordered an Alpine KTP-445U 45W RMS x 4 amp. It has speaker level inputs so that will eliminate the level converter and I already have a Rockford 500W monoblock amp to power my 12" sub. All I've done so far is run a power cable from the battery to under the seats but I'm hoping to get it all installed next weekend. I miss the system I had in my old Pilot!

May I ask what are you going to do? Remove the stock display or just and on to the stock head unit?

Do not forget the pictures... or it didn't happen :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
[FONT=&quot]Hey Toolman, the Kenwood has the BT and the back-up camera input built in to the head-unit (it’s a double din head-unit). I used a PAC SWI-RC unit to interface with the steering wheel controls and the Kenwood. I mounted the Kenwood BT mic. in the stock location in the overhead consul. When I have some more time I plan on installing the stock display in a motorized piece mounted in the center consul. On my first try using the stock head-unit I had no noise when the Pilot dropped cylinders, only when starting the car did I have excessive noise except for a very high “floor noise” (in my opinion). Most of the noise I experienced was when the radio turned on, when you see the big “H” on the display.[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]
[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]So far I have only tested out the system (no RTA or fine tuning yet) and I am very happy with it. I did run into a small problem with the texture and color matching of the new center dash, so this set me back a few days. For me I am not sure if I would be happy with the Touring system, so I would still have to do some up-grading of the sound system. The up-side of the touring is it has an Alpine head-unit that can use the Auto Control LQC without the noise I experienced (not sure if the floor noise is better).[/FONT]

[FONT=&quot]
[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]When I had the ANC hooked-up it tried to adjust the system that I was trying to tune, it was like “trying to herd a bunch of cats and never winning.[/FONT]

[FONT=&quot]
[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]One of the things I want to re-do is the rear floor where the sub is, I want to get some carpet without backing so you cannot see where the sub is.[/FONT]

[FONT=&quot]
[/FONT]
[FONT=&quot]I should finish up the install in the next few days (fingers are crossed after saying that) & will post some pictures when done.[/FONT]

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I look forward to the pics. I'll let you know how my installation goes as well. I considered installing a relay to turn on ANC mics when audio system is off and short them when audio system is on but I have a feeling just adding and amp will make that impossible. Your system sounds really nice. The guys who got the Navi (Alpine HU) aren't complaining of high noise floor. I love my Pilot but not happy with Honda for the things they've cheapened in it, especially the stereo...

BTW, any tips on getting the door panels off?

Good Luck and take care,

Joe


[FONT=&quot]I should finish up the install in the next few days (fingers are crossed after saying that) & will post some pictures when done.[/FONT]

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May I ask what are you going to do? Remove the stock display or just and on to the stock head unit?

Do not forget the pictures... or it didn't happen :)
Speaking of pics or it didn't happen, I think we've all been patiently waiting to see pics of your headunit installed. Lets see it...:31:
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
Speaking of pics or it didn't happen, I think we've all been patiently waiting to see pics of your headunit installed. Lets see it...:31:
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I ran into two small problems:


(1) I had some problems with the paint curing correctly with the cold and moisture here in Seattle. I solved that by turning the heater on in the shop.

(2) The back-up camera. None of the local Honda dealers would let me look at the shop manuals to look at the camera wiring. I solved that with the help of eBay. I bought the 4 book set of Honda shop manuals ($215.00), they showed up yesterday and the back-up camera is now working.

(3) The Pac interface was working until last night, I lost the volume control and now that is fixed.

I spent some time adjusting the system and I could not be happier with the outcome! The Kenwood’s time alignment works great, I had to set the sub up as though it was 16’ away from my ears. Now the bass plays as though it is mounted in the front of the cabin. The amount of EQing need was very small, nothing added just a few bands needed a little subtracting.


Sitting in the front seat it sounds like the band is playing on the dashboard, so I am very happy with the sound stage.


Center stage: it still wanders a very little, I hope with some more time on tuning I can overcome this. When I removed the center dash, there is a spot for a center speaker I hoped I could use. But using the double DIN Kenwood there just was not enough room to mount a center speaker, unless I raised it up off of the dash.


I still am working on a few things like; redoing the finished floor covering the sub and adding a little more sound-deadener to the back door.



OK you are right……………….. No pictures or it didn’t happen! I will be doing more pictures in the next week or so (using a better camera and not a cell phone). Here is one quick picture of the center dash.

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SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful List Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="73" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Grid Accent 1"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="60" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Shading Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="61" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light List Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="62" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Grid Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="63" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 1 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="64" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 2 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="67" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 1 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="68" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 2 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="69" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 3 Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="70" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Dark List Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="71" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Shading Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="72" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful List Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="73" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Grid Accent 2"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="60" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Shading Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="61" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light List Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="62" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Grid Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="63" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 1 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="64" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 2 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="67" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 1 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="68" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 2 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="69" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 3 Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="70" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Dark List Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="71" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Shading Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="72" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful List Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="73" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Grid Accent 3"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="60" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Shading Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="61" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light List Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="62" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Grid Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="63" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 1 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="64" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 2 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="67" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 1 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="68" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 2 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="69" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 3 Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="70" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Dark List Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="71" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Shading Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="72" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful List Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="73" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Grid Accent 4"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="60" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Shading Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="61" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light List Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="62" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Grid Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="63" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 1 Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="64" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 5"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" SemiHidden="false" 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6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="61" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light List Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="62" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Light Grid Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="63" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 1 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="64" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Shading 2 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="65" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 1 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="66" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium List 2 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="67" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 1 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="68" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 2 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="69" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Medium Grid 3 Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="70" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Dark List Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="71" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Shading Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="72" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful List Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="73" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" Name="Colorful Grid Accent 6"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="19" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Subtle Emphasis"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="21" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Intense Emphasis"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="31" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Subtle Reference"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="32" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Intense Reference"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="33" SemiHidden="false" UnhideWhenUsed="false" QFormat="true" Name="Book Title"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="37" Name="Bibliography"/> <w:LsdException Locked="false" Priority="39" QFormat="true" Name="TOC Heading"/> </w:LatentStyles> </xml><![endif]--><!--[if gte mso 10]> <style> /* Style Definitions */ table.MsoNormalTable {mso-style-name:"Table Normal"; mso-tstyle-rowband-size:0; mso-tstyle-colband-size:0; mso-style-noshow:yes; mso-style-priority:99; mso-style-qformat:yes; mso-style-parent:""; mso-padding-alt:0in 5.4pt 0in 5.4pt; mso-para-margin-top:0in; mso-para-margin-right:0in; mso-para-margin-bottom:10.0pt; mso-para-margin-left:0in; line-height:115%; mso-pagination:widow-orphan; font-size:11.0pt; font-family:"Calibri","sans-serif"; mso-ascii-font-family:Calibri; mso-ascii-theme-font:minor-latin; mso-hansi-font-family:Calibri; 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