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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I guess it is my time to share a project in the works with my 2015 Equinox. I started building this as a last minute project for my company and our booth at the CES show in Las Vegas in January so I have 6 weeks to get it all wrapped up..

Working for an audio manufacture I have had more than my fair share of exotic build that leave in some cases nothing more than a show car as well as been in the competition arena in sound quality with multiple championships in several organizations over the past 10 years.

This time as I have a new baby and a wife who simply wont put up with it anymore I am back at it again but with some guidelines for the build to follow-

  • Hi End Sound Quality Demo Vehicle
  • Must be a show worthy install to showcase the products at tradeshows
  • must not use up any usable cargo space in the vehicle, however can replace, modify or re-create areas that are behind panels or in areas that cant be used as open storage space off the lot
  • System must sound incredible and yet be a lot of fun to listen to
  • Vehicle must retain OEM function and operation
  • Must be able to play all kinds of music

So I will cover the steps of this build over the new 6 weeks including sound dampening, wiring, fabrication, installation, application, and the big one modification of the OEM output and it's current electronics as I will be beefing up the electronics and outputs of the stock deck as I want to retain 100% functionality of the stock deck and its way its integrated and functions.


Step 1- Teardown-

Before Teardown-



Behind the left side panel there is a single main harness running in the vehicle. The harness connects to what looks like possibly a BCM or sorts. Also the wheel well is much larger than on the passenger side. Also on this side there is a rubber wire grommet where most all of the exterior electrical wires run thru to the outside. This is where I will be running my rear radar sensor wires thru for the K40 (more to come on that). The rear BCM like module is grounded thru the chassis so when we move it we will have to make sure that it is properly grounded.

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Factory subwoofer is located on the passenger side behind the rear panel in the 2015 Equinox. The harness for this side of the car is split and routed via two different paths (from the front of the vehicle as well as over the ceiling behind the headliner.) Although the stock side panel is larger than the drivers side the wheel well is about 30% smaller. So this will give us more room for a formed sub enclosure if we choose to go this route. to remove the stock sub enclosure it is held in place by 4 10mm nuts and simply unplug the molex at the bottom right and its out.

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_005.jpg.html][IMG][/URL]

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_007.jpg.html][img]http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/Insane01VWPassat/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_007.jpg


To start access to the center council the side panels simply pop off. Each side is in three sections. Start with the front sides (be sure to remove the small plastic pop that arttaches the drivers side panel to the under dash panel), then pop off the very back of the council (be sure to unplug the power port), then unbolt the center council lid and pop the top trim then remove the middle section side plates.

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After removing all of the side plastics (door runners, pillar bases etc) you can now remove the carpet kit without having to remove the entire council. The carpet does go under the back of the center council so you can remove the back two brackets and rear metal place (4 10mm bolts and 8 Phillips screws) and the carpet can slide out from under it. If you are really ambitious I guess you can remove the entire center council but even I have my limits with the amount of electronics and mechanical pieces to the shiftier there is in there.

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_011.jpg.html][img]http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/Insane01VWPassat/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_011.jpg


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[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_015.jpg.html][IMG][/URL]

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_016.jpg.html][IMG][/URL]

When pulling down the headliner be very careful as most all of the wires that run thru the roof are hot glued to the back side of the headliner. Make sure you have somebody help you so you dont crease or bend the headliner as they are easily damaged and have them carefully remove the wires from the back. Once down and out of the vehicle you will have a wiring mess that looks like this.

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_017.jpg.html][img]http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/Insane01VWPassat/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_017.jpg


 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Next we start with the sound deadening. First lets take care of the roof and upper sections first fot today.

I am only using Dynamat brand products. I have used so many different brands over the years and yes, more expensive but it jsut works regardles of the temperature or application. This install will use 5 bulk packs of Dynamat Extreme, 10 rolls of Dynaliner 1/4" foam, 2 Sheets of Dynapad, 8 rolls of Dynaliner 1/8", and 2 rolls of Dynaliner 1/2" pad.


First the roof-

as our beloved equinox's are made with a thin skin outer metal first use to start applying a double layer of Dynamat Extreme-

Although my preference is 100% coverage and going edge to edge however I am not very ambitious to the removal and re-installation of airbags. so we will go from side to side and front to rear and most importantly over the ribs in the roof.



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Then a sinalge layer of 1/4" Dynamat Dynaliner foam in the larger areas.

[URL=http://s77.photobucket.com/user/Insane01VWPassat/media/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_026.jpg.html][img]http://i77.photobucket.com/albums/j67/Insane01VWPassat/2015%20Equinox%20Project/WP_20151121_026.jpg


The Dynamat Extreme helps change the resonant frequency of the panel to reduce flex, rettles and reduce some road and wind noise however teh foam significantly reduces road noise, improves quiet in the cabin, and also improves thermal isolation between inside and outside of the vehicle. It also helps reduce unwanted resonantions (physical and acoustical) on or around the panel to improve the final sound in the vehicler.
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Wow, talk about a picture worth a thousand words.
I see a few questions being answered just by looking at your pics.

Really good pics of front to rear and cross body wiring.
Does your Nox have auto opening rear hatch, I didn't see much in the left rear corner.
Keep the good stuff coming. :thumb:
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

If there is any areas you guys want more step by step details on (integration, disassembly, wire routing, sound dampening, etc) please let me know and ill make sure to document it in more depth with more details.

I plan on using some of our engineers test equipment to show what the actual frequency vs distortion specs and to show the quality of the stock source signal from the deck prior to modifying it. Also comparing it to the performance of the stock amp the how to integrate into it.

I'll also show how to integrate and install a K40 360i radar system.

Also looking at,lighting changes and additions.

I'll also put some time into documenting how to properly sound deaden the doors to reduce road and wind noise while increasing low frequency performance and increase output by use of sound deadening.

Let me know if there is anything else you guys want looked into while I have this all blown apart
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

......subscribe.....thank you for the write up....I'm sure this will be informative.....
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Very interesting. :popcorn:
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

rednox301 said:
Wow, talk about a picture worth a thousand words.
I see a few questions being answered just by looking at your pics.

Really good pics of front to rear and cross body wiring.
Does your Nox have auto opening rear hatch, I didn't see much in the left rear corner.
Keep the good stuff coming. :thumb:
Mine is the LT1. I didn't want the autogate as it takes up a lot of room where I have planned to install one of the dual sub enclosures.

I have a lot of work later this week and this weekend prewiring everything for the system and aftermarket electronics and complete all of the sound deadening so we can start fab next week

Also sorry for typos as on doing this on my phone. And am rarely near a PC. As I can get near one that I can have the tine ill go back add more stuff and correct a bunch of the typos etc.
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Very interesting just to see the teardown, I look forward to seeing the finished product.
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

wow!!! thanks for sharing this!
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

And wow, to finish all this in 6 weeks? Thanks for sharing your progress. Wish you the best!
I'm curious if you're also planning to keep the sliding back row feature after the build? (It'd be awesome if you didn't have to peg the back row to route wires/amplifiers.)
Another question: Will you be using the Low Level outputs directly from the head unit? (I'm assuming you will be?) If so, could you show how you're wiring that up?
I'm pretty close to pulling the trigger of putting in a new sound system, but also probably going with a new head unit. The bluetooth connectivity at startup is hit/miss with my 2013. Sucks!

Keep posting pictures when you can! Like rednox301 said, your pictures have told us so much!
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

I was taking another look at your roof pics where you installed the Dynamat.
Talk about being nose to nose with the airbags.
Anti-static wrist strap??
 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Nice, Id like to see what you come up with. One question tho, the headliner is held up with magnets on almost the entire roof, I'd think the Dynamat would effect their holding power, no?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Chas said:
And wow, to finish all this in 6 weeks? Thanks for sharing your progress. Wish you the best!
I'm curious if you're also planning to keep the sliding back row feature after the build? (It'd be awesome if you didn't have to peg the back row to route wires/amplifiers.)
Another question: Will you be using the Low Level outputs directly from the head unit? (I'm assuming you will be?) If so, could you show how you're wiring that up?
I'm pretty close to pulling the trigger of putting in a new sound system, but also probably going with a new head unit. The bluetooth connectivity at startup is hit/miss with my 2013. Sucks!

Keep posting pictures when you can! Like rednox301 said, your pictures have told us so much!
Thanks for the luck especially since were only working on it a coupole nights a week and on the weekends. lol

So we will be keeping the rear row sliding seat feature. it will not be stuck in a single position as well as the partial recline feature will be retained as well as ability to collapse the seat for storage to the backs of the front seats. I will say we will be getting rid of the spare tire and complete rebuild of the side panels in the back.

We will be using the factory deck low voltage outputs. I will be showing a clip on how the factory signal looks on an oscilloscope as well as on an audio percision to show the frequency response vs THD specs of the stock deck before and after modifying the inside of it as we will be upgrading the power supply, output section as well as adding a digital output right off the transport. I have not decided but we may while we are at it hard wire RCA outs right off the PCB of the stock deck rather than solder etc to the harness leads out fo the deck. Also for the speakers it will be a full rewire as I refuse to use the stock speaker wires for any of the signals including those running into the doors.

The bluetooth in my stock deck is pretty decent however I am putting a high end DSP into this install using a hi-Res bluetooth module so I will use it or streaming hi-res music and other content over the factory deck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

rednox301 said:
I was taking another look at your roof pics where you installed the Dynamat.
Talk about being nose to nose with the airbags.
Anti-static wrist strap??
No worries.... I actually used to work for a company that made airbag charges years ago and even then it takes quite a bit to set them off. In this case the batter is still connected so the electronics still have a reference ground. even if I zap them were all good. 23 years in this industry only seen one bag go off and it was from a rookie audio installer using a old POS test light to test wires for an alarm and snagged the airbag wire. oops. lol
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

AfterhoursFab said:
Nice, Id like to see what you come up with. One question tho, the headliner is held up with magnets on almost the entire roof, I'd think the Dynamat would effect their holding power, no?
magnets? No it's held up by the side panels as well as the hanger hooks i the back, the door grab handles in the roof and the visors. No Magnets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

One thing I will say is that if you ever do venture down this path one big pain in the rear on this is geting the headliner back in. Make sure you have a friend to help. Also the top headliner contol panel with dome lights and for some sunroof controls etc is a pain to put back in. My suggestion is to put it and the upper support on the headliner and then reach over nad plug it in then snap the whole thing up. Also all of the wires that run thru the roof are hot glued to the top of the headliner so be careful when removing them as you WILL have to remove them and not damage them. After pulling the headliner I used the extra slack in them to re-route all of them in a much cleaner way. **** factorys always go for the sloppy quick way in production.
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Here is some photos of my last two builds. This project WILL not be as extensive as these as the wife basically set the ground rules that the car must be usable when I get done. Happy wife, Happy life.


2001 VW Passat Project







Yes that is a kids seat for my son at the time. Wife said "Jr must be ableto have a place to ride in it. So I made it happen



 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

And my daily driver (now second car) since I bought the Equinox-








As this car was build in three days with two people simply upholstery was a must so simple carpet.

 

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Re: 2015 Equinox Build For The Consumer Electronic Show

Totally awesome does not begin to describe it.
This forum keeps getting better and better.
 
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