Some info on 2020 MBUX Speaker Upgrades

andrewarm

Andrew
I just spent the weekend upgrading my speaker setup, and I wanted to provide info to others on the forum. I installed the following:
- Fix 86 DSP
- Alpine R-A60F Amplifier
- Focal ES 165KX2 Speakers

The pieces that I thought might be relevant for some folks are a) the speakers are 3" deep, b) speaker wiring for 2020 MBUX.

Regarding the speaker depth, I did several things:
- Shaved down the factory speaker ring (used a pocket knife, but a dremel would've been better)
- CNCed a speaker ring which mounts to the surface of the door rather than the existing ring
- Mounted CNCed ring using Sikaflex
- Heat formed speaker grill to get more space for cone (in retrospect, not sure this was necessary)

Regarding the 2020 MBUX wiring:
- To remove the MBUX Screen, you must first pop out the vents. Could use a coat hanger, or a tool like this: Mercedes Trim Tool. Just grab onto the crossbars inside the vent (preferably in two places at once) and pull.
- There are two large Aptiv/Delphi connectors on the back of the MBUX unit (note, this is the piece _behind_ the screen). The one with the speaker connections is the larger of the two (26 pin). Pins 2,3, 11, and 12 are FR+, FR-, FL-, FR+, respectively. Note that I do have a little bit of uncertainty about the FR+/- pins - I haven't done a phase test yet, but I'm 80% confident that's the right phase (backed up by the color of the wire). I do not have the rear connections, but I believe (and will be testing soon) that the pinouts for the rear speakers are 15,16, 24, and 25 for RR+, RR-, RL-, and RL+, respectively. If you do not have those connections already, you'll need to purchase terminals to fit in the connector. I currently have several connectors on order from mouser.com and will report back when I determine one that fits.

I've attached some photos to aid my descriptions. Happy to help folks so that they don't have to go through the struggles that I did figuring this all out.
 

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VanGoSki

Well-known member
Cool stuff. So you haven't actually tested this yet, right? I'm sure you're anxious to see how it sounds.

Just FYI -- the option EP7 adds a plug under the driver's seat to add your own wiring for rear speakers. However the wires you have flagged have different colors. Here are the colors for that plug. Not sure if that helps or not.

Audio High Green\Pink 7
Audio Low Green\Black 8
Audio High Violet\Yellow 1
Audio Low Violet\Black 2
 

andrewarm

Andrew
I have tested it, but wires are running everywhere and it’s a mess, so this weekend is cleanup. It sounds pretty spectacular to my novice ears.

Awesome info on the EP7! Wish I had it!
 

VanGoSki

Well-known member
Wow, I'm glad to hear it sounds great.

The only issue with the EP7 is how can I easily amplify the front speakers? If I have to pull the MBUX to access the front speaker wires then it greatly reduces the advantage of the EP7.

BTW, where did you put your amp?
 

andrewarm

Andrew
The only issue with the EP7 is how can I easily amplify the front speakers? If I have to pull the MBUX to access the front speaker wires then it greatly reduces the advantage of the EP7.
Just grab the speaker wires on their way out to the door, splice into that location, and run that to your amp location. Then, run another wire back and connect to where you just cut the speaker wire. It’s a little janky, but it allows you to accomplish everything without having to remove the MBUX. That said, once I figured out the trick with the vents, removing the MBUX wasn’t bad at all. I would say the big advantage of the EP7 option is actually the pins in the back of the connector. I’ve ordered about 8 different types of pins trying to find ones that fit the connector. I _think_ the latest ones I’ve ordered will fit, but I’ve said that before...

BTW, where did you put your amp?
Everything (DSP, amp, and crossovers) is under the passenger seat. Right now it’s all just ziptied in place but one night this week I’m going to make a vented box out of HDPE that will hold it all in place (and allow for easy removal).
 

Eric B

Well-known member
Hi @andrewarm sorry if this is a dumb question ... but why not just splice the speaker wires in the doors rather than pull the MBUX and get them right at the connector to the H/U ? I’m not seeing what that extra work gets you ...
 

andrewarm

Andrew
Hi @andrewarm sorry if this is a dumb question ... but why not just splice the speaker wires in the doors rather than pull the MBUX and get them right at the connector to the H/U ? I’m not seeing what that extra work gets you ...
Not a dumb question at all. My motivation for pulling the MBUX out was twofold - to simplify the wire routing (you could make a signal quality argument, but it’s really just an aesthetics/cleanliness issue), and to capture the rear signal (this one is the hard requirement). If you weren’t as concerned with keeping the wiring chaos limited and you didn’t need to grab the rear signal (either because you don’t need it or you have the EP7 connection), your solution is totally fine.
 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
I just spent the weekend upgrading my speaker setup, and I wanted to provide info to others on the forum. I installed the following:
- Fix 86 DSP
- Alpine R-A60F Amplifier
- Focal ES 165KX2 Speakers

The pieces that I thought might be relevant for some folks are a) the speakers are 3" deep, b) speaker wiring for 2020 MBUX.

Regarding the speaker depth, I did several things:
- Shaved down the factory speaker ring (used a pocket knife, but a dremel would've been better)
- CNCed a speaker ring which mounts to the surface of the door rather than the existing ring
- Mounted CNCed ring using Sikaflex
- Heat formed speaker grill to get more space for cone (in retrospect, not sure this was necessary)

Regarding the 2020 MBUX wiring:
- To remove the MBUX Screen, you must first pop out the vents. Could use a coat hanger, or a tool like this: Mercedes Trim Tool. Just grab onto the crossbars inside the vent (preferably in two places at once) and pull.
- There are two large Aptiv/Delphi connectors on the back of the MBUX unit (note, this is the piece _behind_ the screen). The one with the speaker connections is the larger of the two (26 pin). Pins 2,3, 11, and 12 are FR+, FR-, FL-, FR+, respectively. Note that I do have a little bit of uncertainty about the FR+/- pins - I haven't done a phase test yet, but I'm 80% confident that's the right phase (backed up by the color of the wire). I do not have the rear connections, but I believe (and will be testing soon) that the pinouts for the rear speakers are 15,16, 24, and 25 for RR+, RR-, RL-, and RL+, respectively. If you do not have those connections already, you'll need to purchase terminals to fit in the connector. I currently have several connectors on order from mouser.com and will report back when I determine one that fits.

I've attached some photos to aid my descriptions. Happy to help folks so that they don't have to go through the struggles that I did figuring this all out.
Please keep everyone posted on the rear speakers, pin locations, the place to by the pins and part numbers. It will be greatly appreciated

I too have use The FIX 86 and split the ft speaker wires to ft and rr channels of FIX. All of my components are JL Audio. My system sounds awesome but missing ft to rear fader. I have the JL Audio Sub controller that plugs in amp and have set my gains to balance out the sound ft to rr.
 

andrewarm

Andrew
Please keep everyone posted on the rear speakers, pin locations, the place to by the pins and part numbers. It will be greatly appreciated

I too have use The FIX 86 and split the ft speaker wires to ft and rr channels of FIX. All of my components are JL Audio. My system sounds awesome but missing ft to rear fader. I have the JL Audio Sub controller that plugs in amp and have set my gains to balance out the sound ft to rr.
Will do. I connected with an Aptiv/Delphi sales person just an hour or so ago and he was not confident that the pins I ordered will work. They’re connecting me with a technician but said it could take up to a week.
 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
Cool stuff. So you haven't actually tested this yet, right? I'm sure you're anxious to see how it sounds.

Just FYI -- the option EP7 adds a plug under the driver's seat to add your own wiring for rear speakers. However the wires you have flagged have different colors. Here are the colors for that plug. Not sure if that helps or not.

Audio High Green\Pink 7
Audio Low Green\Black 8
Audio High Violet\Yellow 1
Audio Low Violet\Black 2
I think if you do not have EP7 the pins slots are blank/empty in the plug for MBUX
 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
Will do. I connected with an Aptiv/Delphi sales person just an hour or so ago and he was not confident that the pins I ordered will work. They’re connecting me with a technician but said it could take up to a week.

I started this threat months ago. The Massive EQ corrupted the signal and that's why made me use the FIX with out a fader
 

andrewarm

Andrew

I started this threat months ago
Yeah I ran across it when I was desperately searching, hoping someone would’ve solved this problem for me. 😂 Looks like a great setup!
 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
Yeah I ran across it when I was desperately searching, hoping someone would’ve solved this problem for me. 😂 Looks like a great setup!
Here the other thread I started. My system is a night and day improvement over stock. Sounds like a high end home system now


 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
Will do. I connected with an Aptiv/Delphi sales person just an hour or so ago and he was not confident that the pins I ordered will work. They’re connecting me with a technician but said it could take up to a week.
Any new info on pins from delphi or locations for rear speakers?
 

andrewarm

Andrew
Any new info on pins from delphi or locations for rear speakers?
Mouser couldn’t provide me the part number, but said they could work with aptiv to get them produced, but I’d need to buy 21,000 of them. 😂

So I scoured the web for any pins that looked remotely like the ones I needed, and I ordered a bunch. Most of them came in this morning, so I’ll probably check this evening to see if any fit. Will update after that.
 

andrewarm

Andrew
It’s definitely a TE Connectivity MCON LL 1.2, but the crimper I haven’t didn’t do a good job on them so I couldn’t get any of them to slide in - will try again tomorrow.
 

sanomechanic

Well-known member
It’s definitely a TE Connectivity MCON LL 1.2, but the crimper I haven’t didn’t do a good job on them so I couldn’t get any of them to slide in - will try again tomorrow.
maybe try a sliver of solder. Crimps can be tough if you do not have the specific crimp tool.
 

andrewarm

Andrew
I’ve got it to fit. No guarantees on performance (I won’t be getting around to turn the fader on anytime soon) but it looks identical. The part is TE Connectivity MCON-1.2 LL (SWS) (TE part #7-1452671-3). I ordered from mouser.com here: https://www.mouser.com/ProductDetail/te-connectivity/7-1452671-3/

Note, you’ll need to use 18 or 20 gauge wire, even if your signal wire is bigger than that, as that’s all that will fit in the connector.
 

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