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Old 16th November 2015, 22:00   #1
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Default ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

After spending four years listening to the OEM ICE (which i consider quite good for a front 2 speaker set), i finally decided to give a small upgrade to my beloved fabia's audio set-up. So i read, searched and researched the forum and the internet far and wide in the hope of getting a quick fix budget friendly solution.

My initial search was to upgrade the HU with 2 front components with an Amp (if need be). I figured out that JBL and pioneer have a plug and play set-up which can be piggybacked onto existing factory set-up for a budget friendly quick fix upgrade. On further enquiry, i found out that these set-up where not available in the vicinity of my residence on the day (sunday - 15/11/15) when i wanted it done.

Being determined to get it done anyhow on sunday and not delay it any further i finally landed at planet accessories in malad (mumbai). I met vicky one of the brothers / owners of the shop. I was expecting to audition a huge range, decide on a configuration and get it done. Unfortunately he only had a handful of brands and nothing that i could really vouch for. Determined to get it done, I told vicky my requirement - a component set-up for the front with an amp and asked him to set up an audition for some brands. To my horror and dismay he did not have any audition provision (his excuse/reason - "there are so many brands how can i can set-up auditions for each brand!"). He said "trust me, you will have no issues in the quality or brand that i recommend."

Following my instinct (which i will only know whether it was right / wrong, after you guys reply to this post with your feedback) i decided to go ahead with his recommendations.

First up i told him that i have a budget of 20K for 2 sets of components (i decided on the spur to get the back doors done as well) and a 4 channel amp, wiring and some damping. He said that the budget will not get me any great sound quality and that i should increase it to 25. After a little deliberation i agreed and Vicky had a satisfactory smile on his face. He showcased 2 options (that was all that he had in the good sound quality range) Focal Auditor and the Helix B62C.

According to vicky Focal has a treble heavy set-up and Helix had a more vocal friendly set-up. I opted for Helix Blue.

In amps he suggested to go with blaunpunkt or focal auditor. I enquired for kicker and a ground zero. Both of which i saw in his display. Kicker apparently was not available and ground zero he was more than happy to dispose. He said he had been wanting to get sell them for long now. It made me sceptical, but since i had read about the brand, the reliability and the output i was sure it would not be a mistake.

So my final set-up was 2 helix blue B62C components (8k each) and a 4 channel ground zero iridium series 4115HPX (i am not exactly sure of the model number) amplifier (8K). He also said that i would need a hi-low filter for the stock HU to adapt to the amp.

However, I was very disheartened by his ignorance towards having a good set of wiring. He did not have any brands; only the local hardware type wires. Mojo for the speakers and some Red wire for powering the Amp; the tweeter wires too were some local make and so was the RCA cables to connect to the amp and the hi-low filter. This was the saddest part and i am still sceptical about whether what i am getting is the best sound output that can be achieved. Maybe when i do a HU upgrade i will change the entire wiring with a good brand. Only grouse is that it will be a long tedious process.

All in all he charged me 4k for wiring and the filter. Damping was not needed according to me, as the Fabia doors are concealed completely with no unwanted holes or gaps (pics attached). I was very impressed with the quality of the Skoda build. So in total it worked out to be 28K and we closed the deal at 25K and it took a gruelling 5 hours to complete the job.

The sound seems OK to me. I am no Audiophile and remember i was content with my Fabia OEM set-up, so you can understand my need and desires.

So nett nett, i did manage to do my Fabia ICE upgrade (if i can call it that) and on a day that i wanted it to be done in the price approximately that i had in mind. As of now i am very happy with the install.

However, i have an issue that i am facing: while braking, accelerating i hear a strange "humm" more like a "trrrr" noise coming from the speakers. Could it be a bad ground connection or do i need to add something else to the set-up to get rid of it?

Attaching some pics of the install (hope i manage to upload it correctly). Hope you guys enjoy reading it and please do feel free to share suggestions, opinions & reviews.
Attached Thumbnails
ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-skoda-hu.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-door-inside.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-ground-zero-amp.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-helix-b62c.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-tweeter.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-mojo-wires.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-install.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-install1.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-amp-action.jpg  

ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia-wires.jpg  

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Old 17th November 2015, 14:03   #2
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

Quote:
Originally Posted by smally View Post
However, i have an issue that i am facing: while braking, accelerating i hear a strange "humm" more like a "trrrr" noise coming from the speakers. Could it be a bad ground connection or do i need to add something else to the set-up to get rid of it?
Does the tone of this sound change when you accelerate. If it alternator whine it will change depending on the rpm of the engine. Do you hear this hum when the engine is off (but the music system is on)?
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Old 17th November 2015, 14:21   #3
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

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Originally Posted by navin View Post
Does the tone of this sound change when you accelerate. If it alternator whine it will change depending on the rpm of the engine. Do you hear this hum when the engine is off (but the music system is on)?
haven't checked it thoroughly as the car is not being used by me currently. will check all the points that you mentioned and reply.
my only worry is that is it harmful for the set-up or the car in any manner?
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Old 17th November 2015, 14:56   #4
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

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haven't checked it thoroughly as the car is not being used by me currently. will check all the points that you mentioned and reply.
my only worry is that is it harmful for the set-up or the car in any manner?
No it is not harmful per se, just irritating.
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Old 18th November 2015, 01:29   #5
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

It is quite sad to hear that good wiring is not available at the shop you got this from.

I would suggest getting your wiring tested at a good audio install shop, pay if you have to.

Last edited by GTO : 19th November 2015 at 17:45. Reason: Language correction
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Old 18th November 2015, 09:49   #6
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

Since the length of the RCA cable is ~17', (which I hate in the car audio), good quality shielded cables is a must. Also make sure that you run this wire where the power and signal wires are less, atleast never run in parallel. If you are satisfied with speaker cables, you can check with home audio-video shops, 16awg should be fine. It seems the quality of the installation is poor, if possible, solder + heatshrink all the joints than simply twisting the wires.

Last edited by ::CMS:: : 18th November 2015 at 09:52.
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Old 20th November 2015, 19:48   #7
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

Hi Friends,
Thanks for the advice.
So i had a chance of driving the car yesterday and checking out the system thoroughly.
The "trrr" sound majorly comes when braking (it is the loudest while braking), then the turn indicators gives out the second loudest; while the left side indication is as loud as the brake, the right side indication is very faint. Then comes the horn, which is in between the 2 indicator db levels.
So i am convinced that the sound is from a faulty ground wiring.
Will plan for a change of wiring with proper proper gauge wires and connectors and heat shield as suggested.
I will update once i get this done.
Meanwhile please do keep writing in with suggestions / help.
thanks,
smally
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Old 20th November 2015, 20:57   #8
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

Quote:
Originally Posted by smally View Post
Hi Friends,
Thanks for the advice.
So i had a chance of driving the car yesterday and checking out the system thoroughly.
The "trrr" sound majorly comes when braking (it is the loudest while braking), then the turn indicators gives out the second loudest; while the left side indication is as loud as the brake, the right side indication is very faint. Then comes the horn, which is in between the 2 indicator db levels.
So i am convinced that the sound is from a faulty ground wiring.
Will plan for a change of wiring with proper proper gauge wires and connectors and heat shield as suggested.
I will update once i get this done.
Meanwhile please do keep writing in with suggestions / help.
thanks,
smally
Changing to better wiring and proper grounding should resolve the issue.
Have you got components for the rear as well , where have you placed the rear tweeter.
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Old 21st November 2015, 20:56   #9
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

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Originally Posted by soumen.blore View Post
Changing to better wiring and proper grounding should resolve the issue.
Have you got components for the rear as well , where have you placed the rear tweeter.
Thank you soumen.blore,
Yes i have components at the back too.
Fabia has a pre-set location made available for speaker and tweeter at the back.
And boy, they sound great!
No need for a sub woofer.
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Old 21st November 2015, 21:07   #10
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Default Re: ICE upgrade in my Skoda Fabia

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Originally Posted by smally View Post
Thank you soumen.blore,
Yes i have components at the back too.
Fabia has a pre-set location made available for speaker and tweeter at the back.
And boy, they sound great!
No need for a sub woofer.
Matter of time before the itch to upgrade starts and you start looking for that sub woofer.
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