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Upgrading the Stock Audio System

Bentley From the original 3 Litre to the current Continental GT and Mulsanne

Upgrading the Stock Audio System

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  #16  
Old 09-27-2011, 11:40 AM
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As an Opto Mechanical Engineer/ Wedding Photographer / Watch aficionado, I think I am clearly the authority in Audio .

All kidding aside, the Bentley audio system is hands down the best oem audio system I have ever heard in term of imaging and all around symmetry. The bass coming from the doors is ridiculous.
I always add a sub-woofers to all my cars. Either a 10" or a 12". In fact I had a sub and amp waiting to go into her until I simply turned up the bass a bit.
I'm no kiddie anymore but I use to build systems and almost blew my right eardrum @ 16 years old. Now I just want a tight system with zero distortion and great imaging.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stereo_imaging

Lest we forget the rest of the car runs off the LCD- a/c etc...

And if this still doesn't convince you to keep your system stock then I have a 12" Orion Sub in a 1 cu/ft x .75" mdf wall, sealed box and rockford fosgate old school amp with bass **** for sale! :-)
 
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  #17  
Old 09-27-2011, 02:42 PM
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LOL enginyr

While i agree the stock system is darn good for OEM and agree bass coming from the doors is excellent. Like you, built/installed various systems over the years and sure remember Ms. Alma Gates and her ridiculous dB Wars 160dB+ systems (never understood WHY... other than because someone could). Take care of those ears guy, they can't really be replaced! Now you had some of those blue colored Class A Soundstream amps....

As for keeping the Bose system stock... well, to each their own. Am sure you are not saying you don't hear the breakup and distortion at higher volume levels. C'mon, why not mod the stock audio system? Color me too lazy at this point to dig in and redo the audio system, it is 'good enough'... yet still far from the very best my ears have ever heard in a car. The Naim gets much closer.

It would be nice to have a 7-band EQ instead of just 3-band (for starters). That should be easy fix via firmware update. Not like we're asking for custom DSP capability with various filters/effects/shaping/etc. It is like we are stuck with an 'old school' basic electronic ignition system that uses perhaps three potentiometers versus the newest generation with full computer integration.

Thanks for your post, gave me a big chuckle

PS: Do you have any of the blue Soundstream amps? Actually i just looked online and OMG they are making them again it seems... and better
www.soundstream.com/AudioProducts/Amplifiers/reference.htm . Wow, never knew they'd play to us 'old school' guys. Ever tried the Milberts, the sound from them is quite interesting.

(Some humor, some truth) BTW, real men used USAMPS that could double as arch welders runing them at 0.25 Ohm... and not those puny Rockfords
 

Last edited by stevenrmusic; 09-27-2011 at 03:01 PM.
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  #18  
Old 09-27-2011, 03:46 PM
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Yes, at one point I had 5 of the blue SS when they were going out of business and then I picked up 3 of the chrome ones then later sold them at a profit. Those were beasts. I was running 2 x 15w6 in a hatchback camaro with an epicenter. I could set off a building alarm at some real low frequencies

Not like we're asking for custom DSP capability with various filters/effects/shaping/etc

It does include some DSP in the upper right screen under the Audio button
Neutral, Concert etc...

Thank god my hearing came back
 
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  #19  
Old 09-28-2011, 03:28 AM
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Originally Posted by enginyr View Post
Thank god my hearing came back
(Humor) What did you say? What? What?

Yeah those amps were getting some nice $$ in their day. Was, frankly, surprised to see Soundstream is now making them again with all this darn Class T 'efficiency' seemingly taking over the amplification market. i miss the days of super hot running Class A car audio amplifiers you could fry an egg on, all the beefed up alternators and power distribution blocks and multi-capacitor banks. Just running all that big heavy wiring was an art form unto itself.

Yes Bentley does offer some DSP, yet it is close-ended i'd be happy with having a 7 band EQ as the 3 band is just too dull a knife to cut up the entire frequency spectrum imho.
 
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  #20  
Old 09-30-2011, 03:18 PM
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Thot I would share the audio system upgrade recently completed on my 2006 CGT Mulliner.

n Goal. I wanted a state-of-the art sound system that looked as close to factory installed as possible. And I wanted maximum listening/viewing options. In other words, I wanted a system that plays cds (retain 6 disc changer so I can listen to books on tape or the old fashioned cd), has ipod capability, and has video-in-motion capacity. As to the sound, I wanted clear highs but substantial bass; but, again looking as close to factory as possible. This included my refusal to allow a subwoofer to displace the ski boot (somewhat to the chagrin of my audio designer/installer). Thus, figuring out how to add bass in a different way became one of a variety of challenges. The result is: I have an ipod; I have the original 6 disc changer; I have video-in-motion. And until you open the glove compartment (and see the ½ din dvd) or the trunk (and see the Tru Technologies amp and custom rack) the entire system looks as if it came direct from Crewe. And the system sounds “incredible” ( per a friend of mine that is a former Bell Labs scientist and audio/soundstage designer for several Broadway theaters).
n The System Components. After considerable thought, research and discussion my designer/installer decided upon a combination of Dynaudio, Morel, Tru Technologies and Fosgate components. He/we considered a number of other options but after listening to the Dynaudio system in a Veyron (stock install) and Morel in the studio I was convinced that the combination provided the sound I wanted. More specifically as to the equipment:
1) Tru Technologies L8i Line Driver (hidden in electronics control panel in trunk)
2) Tru Technologies Super Billet 6 amp with upgraded burr brown devices in trunk with custom built amp rack -- Plexiglas bent over amplifier
3) Rockford Fosgate 360.2 (line output converter/sublevel control/aux input, 1/3 octave equalizer/crossover)
4) Dynaudio Esotec 8” mid bass drivers in doors with custom fiber glass enclosures
5) Dynaudio Esotec Dome mid-range drivers in doors with custom fiber glass enclosures
6) Dynaudio Esotec tweeters flushed into factory locations in A pillars
7) Dynaudio 8” subwoofer under each front seat with custom molded fiber glass enclosures
8) Morel Supremo in rear quarter panels
9) ½ din dvd attached below the 6 disc changer (a cheap unit, but all that we could find that would fit below the 6 disc changer and allow the glove box to close); video-in-motion integrated thru the Bentley navigation screen
10) Noise suppression (ie., sound deadening) throughout (doors, roof, floorboards etc.)
n Designer/Installer. Charles Maddy at Systems Unlimited in Bellevue, Washington. He is simply the best. I went to several other installers and they all told me that what I wanted was impossible. For example, I couldn’t have an ipod and retain the original 6 disc changer. Wrong. I couldn’t have an ipod, 6 disc changer and video-in-motion. Wrong. And I couldn’t achieve state-of-the-art sound, including solid bass, unless I was willing to give up the factory look of my ski boot pass-thru and A pillars. Again, wrong. And Charles has an excellent ear that was critical for the final tuning.


In addition to the audio, Systems Unlimited did a stealth installation (both inside and out) of a 9500ci radar/laser system and a back-up camera (tucked above license plate and integrated into the nav screen).
 
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  #21  
Old 09-30-2011, 03:36 PM
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here we go....nice system...gotta love the dyns and billet!
 
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  #22  
Old 10-01-2011, 04:04 AM
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Originally Posted by Gobedo View Post
Thot I would share the audio system upgrade recently completed on my 2006 CGT Mulliner.

n Goal. I wanted a state-of-the art sound system that looked as close to factory installed as possible. And I wanted maximum listening/viewing options. In other words, I wanted a system that plays cds (retain 6 disc changer so I can listen to books on tape or the old fashioned cd), has ipod capability, and has video-in-motion capacity. As to the sound, I wanted clear highs but substantial bass; but, again looking as close to factory as possible. This included my refusal to allow a subwoofer to displace the ski boot (somewhat to the chagrin of my audio designer/installer). Thus, figuring out how to add bass in a different way became one of a variety of challenges. The result is: I have an ipod; I have the original 6 disc changer; I have video-in-motion. And until you open the glove compartment (and see the ½ din dvd) or the trunk (and see the Tru Technologies amp and custom rack) the entire system looks as if it came direct from Crewe. And the system sounds “incredible” ( per a friend of mine that is a former Bell Labs scientist and audio/soundstage designer for several Broadway theaters).
n The System Components. After considerable thought, research and discussion my designer/installer decided upon a combination of Dynaudio, Morel, Tru Technologies and Fosgate components. He/we considered a number of other options but after listening to the Dynaudio system in a Veyron (stock install) and Morel in the studio I was convinced that the combination provided the sound I wanted. More specifically as to the equipment:
1) Tru Technologies L8i Line Driver (hidden in electronics control panel in trunk)
2) Tru Technologies Super Billet 6 amp with upgraded burr brown devices in trunk with custom built amp rack -- Plexiglas bent over amplifier
3) Rockford Fosgate 360.2 (line output converter/sublevel control/aux input, 1/3 octave equalizer/crossover)
4) Dynaudio Esotec 8” mid bass drivers in doors with custom fiber glass enclosures
5) Dynaudio Esotec Dome mid-range drivers in doors with custom fiber glass enclosures
6) Dynaudio Esotec tweeters flushed into factory locations in A pillars
7) Dynaudio 8” subwoofer under each front seat with custom molded fiber glass enclosures
8) Morel Supremo in rear quarter panels
9) ½ din dvd attached below the 6 disc changer (a cheap unit, but all that we could find that would fit below the 6 disc changer and allow the glove box to close); video-in-motion integrated thru the Bentley navigation screen
10) Noise suppression (ie., sound deadening) throughout (doors, roof, floorboards etc.)
n Designer/Installer. Charles Maddy at Systems Unlimited in Bellevue, Washington. He is simply the best. I went to several other installers and they all told me that what I wanted was impossible. For example, I couldn’t have an ipod and retain the original 6 disc changer. Wrong. I couldn’t have an ipod, 6 disc changer and video-in-motion. Wrong. And I couldn’t achieve state-of-the-art sound, including solid bass, unless I was willing to give up the factory look of my ski boot pass-thru and A pillars. Again, wrong. And Charles has an excellent ear that was critical for the final tuning.


In addition to the audio, Systems Unlimited did a stealth installation (both inside and out) of a 9500ci radar/laser system and a back-up camera (tucked above license plate and integrated into the nav screen).
Congrats and Thanks For A VERY Helpful Post!

May I Ask:
- Why did you use the Morel Supremo's in the rear quarterpanels and not go Dynaudio throughout?
- I am going to go for a sub through the ski boot (probably a single 12, but not necessarily) and am looking for something that will match well and not weigh a huge amount. Any recomendations?
- The custom fiberglass enclosures in the doors, did this require modifying the stock grills or did the enclosure just sit within the doors?
- For noise suppression did you use Dynamat or a different material?
- Is there anything you would do differently?

P.S. Show some pics Please
 

Last edited by farris; 10-01-2011 at 04:30 AM.
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  #23  
Old 10-01-2011, 12:16 PM
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Morel v Dynaudio in rear: I find the Morels to be a little more laid back, which I prefer in the rear fill. Obviously, subjective.

Ski boot sub: If I would have put a sub in the ski boot (to complement my system) I would have selected the Dynaudio Esotar 12 (not that lightweight). You might also consider the Dynaudio MW 190 or the Morel Ulitmo 12. BTW, your willingness to put a sub in the ski boot will provide you really nice bass.

Stock grill modification: none required.

Noise suppression: Dynamat is fine, but I recommend STP.

Hindsight modifications: As I said, I'm really happy with the system. Perhaps I would consider Esotar instead of Esotec speakers. And of course I would use the latest iteration of the Fosgate integration unit 360.3 (not sure if its available quite yet).


I'm out of town without access to pics but will display on this site when I return.

Good luck with your design/install.
 
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  #24  
Old 10-01-2011, 02:31 PM
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Originally Posted by Gobedo View Post
Morel v Dynaudio in rear: I find the Morels to be a little more laid back, which I prefer in the rear fill. Obviously, subjective.

Ski boot sub: If I would have put a sub in the ski boot (to complement my system) I would have selected the Dynaudio Esotar 12 (not that lightweight). You might also consider the Dynaudio MW 190 or the Morel Ulitmo 12. BTW, your willingness to put a sub in the ski boot will provide you really nice bass.

Stock grill modification: none required.

Noise suppression: Dynamat is fine, but I recommend STP.

Hindsight modifications: As I said, I'm really happy with the system. Perhaps I would consider Esotar instead of Esotec speakers. And of course I would use the latest iteration of the Fosgate integration unit 360.3 (not sure if its available quite yet).


I'm out of town without access to pics but will display on this site when I return.

Good luck with your design/install.
I am not familiar with STP, how does it differ to Dynamat?

Thanks for being so helpful!!!
 

Last edited by farris; 10-01-2011 at 02:42 PM.
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  #25  
Old 10-01-2011, 03:34 PM
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Guys I really don't want to take out the speakers in my GT to establish what sizes the stock speakers are. Can someone please confirm?

After the very helpful posts I am narrowing my options to Hertz Audio, Dynaudio (Thanks to a cool and helpful 6speeder), Morel, Polk Reference and the JL Audio ZR Range.

Thanks and you guys are awesome!
 

Last edited by farris; 10-02-2011 at 06:26 AM.
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  #26  
Old 10-01-2011, 11:49 PM
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Originally Posted by Gobedo View Post
Thot I would share the audio system upgrade recently completed on my 2006 CGT Mulliner.
Very nice!
 
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  #27  
Old 10-02-2011, 10:57 AM
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STP v Dynamat. Altho STP is the market leader in Europe it is relatively new to the US market (just recently opening up major parts warehouse in NJ). STP's noise suppression product line is based on materials developed in Russia for military applications (think submarines etc.). I've used Dynamat in the past (a terrific product) but found STP has a more diverse product line, including thicker mats. The result is not only more sound deadening but a less involved application (ie., one rather than multiple layers required). In any event, you and your installer should check out www.stp-atlantic.com. And do not scrimp on sound deadening (I suggest floorboards, doors and roof). The Bentley GT is a wonderful car, but not the quietest ride vis-a-vis hosting audio excellence.
 
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Gobedo View Post
STP v Dynamat. Altho STP is the market leader in Europe it is relatively new to the US market (just recently opening up major parts warehouse in NJ). STP's noise suppression product line is based on materials developed in Russia for military applications (think submarines etc.). I've used Dynamat in the past (a terrific product) but found STP has a more diverse product line, including thicker mats. The result is not only more sound deadening but a less involved application (ie., one rather than multiple layers required). In any event, you and your installer should check out www.stp-atlantic.com. And do not scrimp on sound deadening (I suggest floorboards, doors and roof). The Bentley GT is a wonderful car, but not the quietest ride vis-a-vis hosting audio excellence.
STP It is.

The STP Bomb looks really interesting. I would have thought this would ideal for the doors and the rear deck (due to door speakers and the sub in trunk), but apparently it is not recommended for either of those loctions.

The STP GoLd looks interesting too

Thanks, this is really helpful!

Now I just need to establish what are the ideal speaker sizes.
 

Last edited by farris; 10-03-2011 at 12:01 PM.
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  #29  
Old 10-04-2011, 04:34 PM
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Ok after hours of research I have narrowed it down to two brands and three options.

Option 1 (Dynaudio):
Esotar 650 (Pair)
Esotar 430 (Pair)
Esotec Tweeter (Pair)
Esotar Passive Crossovers (Pair)
Esotar Sub


Option 2 (Dynaudio):
Esotec 342 System

Option 3 (Hertz Audio):
Hertz Mille MLK 3 PA
http://www.hertzaudiovideo.com/default_en.htm


In all cases, I will be going with an Audison Bit One and SPL Soundproofing on the rear deck and doors.

I welcome peoples thoughts.
 
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Old 10-05-2011, 10:28 AM
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Never personally heard any of those speakers per se so can't comment. Have heard Dynaudio upper line home audio speakers MANY times over the years and they are nice.

Looking at the Bit 1 owner’s manual, seems to me you DO NOT need passive crossovers, and frankly imho it is better to allow the Bit 1 handle the crossover points (plus EQ, timing, phasing, etc adjustments). Of course this means each driver/output needs its own amplification. Try to eliminate using passive crossovers all you can as the digital crossovers in the Bit 1 should achieve better sonics plus far and away more flexibility / control.
 

Last edited by stevenrmusic; 10-05-2011 at 01:59 PM.
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