A client from Northampton recently dropped into Mobile Edge to discuss options for upgrading his 2016 Ford F-350 stereo system. We had installed a stereo system in his previous truck, and he was anxious to move that equipment to his new Super Duty. After talking about how he enjoys his music, we came up with a two-stage plan to transform his sound system into something amazing.
Stage One – Complete Audio System Overhaul
We started the project by removing the factory sound system equipment from the F-350. We ran Audison Connection power and signal wiring through the truck to work with the new amplifier and added Hushmat sound deadening to the interior and exterior door skins.
We fabricated a set of plastic adapters that would let us mount the Hertz HSK165XL components from his previous vehicle in the doors. A set of Fast Rings acoustic coupling baffles helps channel the energy from the speakers through the grille in the door panel to improve the sound of the system. With the plan in place to upgrade the system further, Mike integrated two tweeter mounts into the factory A-pillar. We mounted the tweeters from the Hertz set in the top locations and added a block-off plate to cover the second holes.
We replaced the factory source unit with a Pioneer AVH-X490BS multimedia receiver and added an SXV300V1 SiriusXM satellite radio tuner module so the client can listen to any genre of music he wants at any time.
Ford F-350 Super Duty Subwoofer System
The client had a pair of Hertz ES250 10-inch subwoofers from his previous system. We ordered an Atrend A394-10CP enclosure and mounted it and the subs behind the rear seat of the truck. To power the system, Mike fabricated a steel amp rack for the client’s Hertz HCP5 five-channel amplifier under the driver’s seat, keeping it out of the way while making sure it’s easily accessible for tuning.
Before the client left, we tinted the windows with 3M Color Stable film to keep the interior cool during the summer and protect the client from UV exposure.
Part Two – Things Get A Little Fun!
About six months after finishing the original installation, the client returned to Mobile Edge to begin the second part of the upgrade. He liked the way the system sounded but was anxious to get it playing much louder. Bob and Mike had a plan to install four 6.5-inch Hertz woofers in each door and add a second set of tweeters to the pillars.
Mike removed the door panels and masked them with 3M 301+ masking tape. This heavy-duty masking tape is designed to stick to painted surfaces and would serve as a release layer for the fiberglass enclosure we would construct in the door. We applied several layers of fiberglass to the pocket in the door, then set the mounting panel in place and ’glassed that to the rear part of the enclosure. Once done, we sanded the face of the pod smooth so that it looked as though it belonged as part of the door.
Mike also created a custom trim ring for the DRC controller from the bitONE HD processor. Once the door panels, tweeter pods and trim ring were complete, we sent them out for hydro dipping. That’s a process that transfers a graphic image onto the complex shape of the panels. As you can see, the diamond plate and ghost skull pattern give the panels an aggressive appearance.
Amplification and Signal Processing Upgrade
We added a Hertz HCD5D amplifier and an Audison bitOneHD under the passenger seat to give us complete control over the signal going to each speaker in the system. The tweeters are powered by a single pair of channels on the HCP5. The second pair of channels powers the pair of MP165P woofers in the factory door location. Two channels on the HCP5D power the MP165P woofers at the front of the doors while the other pair of channels drives the last two 6.5-inch Hertz woofers. This configuration allowed us to time-align the output of each driver. The forward woofers are assigned midrange duties while the four rear woofers act as midbass drivers.
What’s Next for this Ford F-350 Stereo?
The client isn’t done yet. He plans to return to add more subwoofers to the system. He’s considering a custom center console for the back seat and more power for the subs. Whatever he chooses, we’ll be ready and happy to help! If you are looking for “just a little more” from your factory sound system, drop by Mobile Edge in Lehighton and speak with a member of our team. Alternatively, you can reach us by phone or by e-mail using our online contact page accessed by the button below.
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