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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Has anyone installed an aftermarket amp in their 2018+ Limited with HK / NAV system? Can I use breakout harness behind head unit or do I have to tap the amp outputs? Not finding much info on doing this.
According to these guys the 10 & 6 pin harnesses work with 2019 Limited with NAV

https://www.autoharnesshouse.com/82191_info.html

So far I have replaced all six speakers with Infinity reference series speakers in the dash and front and rear doors. Noticeable bass improvement but still lacks overall volume especially in rear. The HK system sounds great in my garage but as soon as I roll down the highway it is average at best, especially with AT tires and roof rack. The Infinity speakers want more power for sure.


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Discussion Starter #2 (Edited)
Interestingly, the speaker wiring changes colors between the amp outputs and speakers in doors/dash.
Also, not 100% sure about polarity since Subaru service manual doesn't show polarity markings on their audio diagrams.

Update: see images in post 29 below for speaker polarity



 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
On the Crutchfield adapters, white is +, black is -, and the connectors are different sizes so they can only be install one way on speaker terminals

Pics of speaker connectors:

Amp 30-pin





Rear doors





Front doors





Dash







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Interestingly, the speaker wiring changes colors between the amp outputs and speakers in doors/dash.
Thanks for the pinouts. I haven't got the HK but it's good to have for reference.

The HK wiring harness clips directly into the back of the radio and gets power from an otherwise unused 12VDC/GND connector, also behind the radio.
The return line clips into the standard speaker wiring harness behind the radio. That said; the speaker wires changing colours isn't a surprise.


I don't see any reason you can't remove the HK box and then cut the wiring for a new amp's high level inputs and it's output.
It would certainly save you a bunch of work by not having to remove the radio and run new lines.

I don't believe you can buy a replacement HK harness (should you want to put it back) but I wonder if you'd be able to remove the pins from the existing clip and fashion something that'll work but also save the factory HK hardware.

I tested the above unused 12VDC connector but forget if its switched or constant. I'd have to check again but I think it's switched and you can use the HK's power as your new amp's acc switch. You can easily test this yourself using the HK clip pins. Don't want to state the obvious but don't use the HK's ground. I grounded my amp using the bolt that the HK is mounted to the floor with.


If have Infinity Reference in my dash. Great little speakers but don't forget to get a good set of bass blockers; you'll need them with a better/louder amp. I used 800Hz and am quite happy with them.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Also, according to 2019 Impreza/Crosstrek wiring diagrams, the dash tweeters are not connected directly to the amp, but are fed from the DCM (Data Communication Module), after the amp, also it appears only one of the rear channels is fed to amp from HU, and then split to both left/right rear speakers from amp.



 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
If have Infinity Reference in my dash. Great little speakers but don't forget to get a good set of bass blockers; you'll need them with a better/louder amp. I used 800Hz and am quite happy with them.
My Infinity 3.5's came with 270uF blockers but i havent installed them since im still running off the factory amp which already has DSP and sends only mid/highs to the dash speakers.

System block diagram

 

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Love the schematics.

Yeah, the front speakers are run through the module because that’s where it cuts in for the telephone and for the car’s voice command lady. The radio wiring harness, and HK via the return harness, connect to the input of the module.

That 270 capacitor is only good for about 147Hz. I first tried 300Hz blockers then the 600s. My 800s are about 50uf. Car Audio - Speaker Crossover Chart and Capacitance vs. Frequency Calculator(High-pass)
 

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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
That 270 capacitor is only good for about 147Hz. I first tried 300Hz blockers then the 600s. My 800s are about 50uf. Car Audio - Speaker Crossover Chart and Capacitance vs. Frequency Calculator(High-pass)
Don’t forget your non-HK system has dash and front doors in parallel so your definitely gonna need a blocker.

The HK system definitely has some DSP going on for sure, the front doors roll off quickly above 500Hz so the 6x9 tweeters in the doors aren’t doing much.
My Infinity 3.5” dash speakers are pretty efficient and sound really good driven off the factory amp.
I may just run the front and rears to a four channel amp to add some volume to the rear. I’m seeing the rears roll off down below about 100-125Hz. This system actually sounds good when source is newer smooth jazz or country, but suffers with older 80’s-90’s stuff.


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Discussion Starter #9
I don't see any reason you can't remove the HK box and then cut the wiring for a new amp's high level inputs
I forgot to mention earlier , it looks like volume is controlled by the factory amp via CANBUS so the amp will have to stay.



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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
BTW

In case anyone might be interested, here’s a great app found on the IOS App Store for testing car audio system,

Signal Generator: Audio Test Tone Utility by Media Punk Studios https://apps.apple.com/us/app/signal-generator-audio-test-tone-utility/id543661843
I used it to test roll off on the factory amp channels and can help isolate rattles and vibrations in the doors, dash, etc.





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I forgot to mention earlier , it looks like volume is controlled by the factory amp via CANBUS so the amp will have to stay.
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When you say “factory amp” are you talking about the Harman G3/3.1 headunit’s factory amp, in the dash, or the Harman Kardon tuned amplifier unit under the passenger seat?

I ask because the dash Harman controls the volume (fed to the Harman Kardon) and yes, it has to stay; unless you replace it with a JVC or something.
 

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Discussion Starter #12 (Edited)
When you say “factory amp” are you talking about the Harman G3/3.1 headunit’s factory amp, in the dash, or the Harman Kardon tuned amplifier unit under the passenger seat?

I ask because the dash Harman controls the volume (fed to the Harman Kardon) and yes, it has to stay; unless you replace it with a JVC or something.
I’m referring to the amp under passenger seat.(shaded area in diagram)




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Ah. Thanks For the clarification.

I've been harvesting the internet to figure out why the HK DSP has a CANBUS connection but I get nothing.
Actually, I can't even see it in your pictures.

Your pictures and pin out guide show 12 wires + 2X pwr & gnd. That tells me you have 6 sets of inputs as I'd suspect they kept inputs on one clip and outputs on another clip.
Unless there's a third clip plugged into the HK, there can't be a CANBUS connection, just like the Rockford Fosgate package.

Are there more clips and can I see it?

RF instructions:https://www.subaru.ca/content/7907/media/en-ca/accessory/installation-guide/H630SFL000 - Audio System Upgrade Kit_2017 Impreza _11_17_16_ENG.pdf.pdf

That said; There is no special HK output on the headunit output. Each of the four Harman models that Subaru uses has the exact same outputs.
I believe you can remove the device and revert back to the standard speaker lines; using the HK harness wires or running new ones from behind the radio via splice or breakout.
The HK would have to plug into the standard Subaru harness somewhere behind the radio.
The question becomes where that connector is because the headunit's output only has 4 channels yet you have 6 HK inputs
That means it's somewhere after, or at, the place where the harness does a parallel split to separate the door and dash speakers.

Of course, if there's another clip with 8 wires, the 12 wire clip would be your outputs to the 6 speakers plus power/gnd.

FYSA: I could be wrong for the Base model and would have to check again but the only difference is that it doesn't have a XM input.
The functionality differences between the models are: Base hasn't got a CD player. The High is a Mid with navigation. Otherwise, they share all internal components and connectors (except the Base as per above). For reference, the 2019's G31 models are BE2831 (Base), BE2832 (Base+), BE2833 (Mid) and BE2834 (High).
The G3's are similar to the 31s but while the Mid and High are separated by navigation only, the 6.5"'s internals are not very similar.


I still think you can use the HK harness to your advantage and I love that it provides the option of running a 6 channel amp (to hell with the dash capacitors) or a 4 channel amp capable of a parallel 2Ω.

As said, I don't have the HK (thankfully) but you can easily test my assumption: Unplug the HK and see if anything funky happens. If not, connect a speaker to the exposed harness terminals.
If it works, your solid.
If I'm wrong, I'll be happy to eat it. (It won't be the first time; eh, MiniSQ?)
 

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Would you advise the 6x9 and tweeter upgrade? I have the HK system and went with doing full sound deadening on the doors first. Bass was tightened up enormously. Now I am wondering if I want to upgrade just speakers but use the HK amp. I am following this thread for sure :)
 

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Word on the street is that the HK speaker upgrades are mid-levels but I haven't got any facts on it. Perhaps the speaker model is identified around the magnet.

Sound deadening is something we should all do. I haven't :( but I also have no sound quality issues thanks to my upgrades.
Maybe if I get bored enough or run out of other little projects that aren't panning out so well.



For a few months after the 18's came out, there were a number of people debating the quality and value of the RF and HK packages.
I haven't seen much discussion since the 19's release but the general impression I got was:

1. Stock sucks: I thought they were much better than the previous generation but yeah; in comparison to aftermarkets, they suck.
2. RF is a waste of money: If you're willing to drop $685 CDN on that, invest in 6 better speakers all around, add a DSP if you can afford a couple hundred more. Or get 2 awesome 6x9s and the DSP much cheaper.
3. HK is much better than stock and probably better than RF but you could do better if you had to pay extra for it.


[P.S. Don't forget that the HK and RF boxes are really DSPs that also amplify a little.. Except for high end applications (stereo competitions, professional demonstrations, etc.), I don't see the value of a DSP in any vehicle. However, for a couple hundred bucks if it makes you sound and feel better when there's no road noise, why not?]
 

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Discussion Starter #16
My biggest complaint with the HK system is lack of volume. As I mentioned, it sounds excellent when parked with late release audio sources, but as soon-as you hit the road the sound is lost with wind and road noise , worse with AT tires and rook rack, and when you turn up the volume the DSP and roll off takes over.

My goal is to get full range plus added volume from all door speakers with added bass in the fronts, and keep all existing audio features such as phone / NAV audio to the dash. Once I figure how/where to grab the front and rear channels I’ll run them to a 4channel amp and go from there. It’d be nice to keep the rear fade feature but I can always balance front/rear using the amp gains and X-overs. I’m leaning towards a Audio Controls LC-4.800 which’s has speaker level inputs and additional front high inputs plus summing of front and rears if needed.




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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Would you advise the 6x9 and tweeter upgrade? I have the HK system and went with doing full sound deadening on the doors first. Bass was tightened up enormously. Now I am wondering if I want to upgrade just speakers but use the HK amp. I am following this thread for sure :)
If your happy with the volume of the HK system I would keep it as is.

I have replaced all my HK system speakers with Infinity Reference series and while the front doors 6x9’s have improved bass response, overall I think they could use more power and less roll off to the rear 6.5’s.
Also the 8-speaker marketing ploy is BS. There are six speakers: mid-highs in dash , mid-bass in front doors and two-way coaxials in rear doors. By their logic, I now have a 12-speaker system with two-ways all around, LOL!


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Lol, I remember that discussion. Here’s what Harmon Kardon states is inside:

4 × 80mm-high-efficiency-wide-dispersion-midrange speaker
2 × 80mm midrange speaker with 16mm tweeter unity extended bandwith speaker
2 × 170mm Coaxial high-efficiency midwoofer with 25mm tweeter

Ref: https://www.harmankardon.com/subaru.html

No, I don’t understand how they get those figures or how the picture in ref’d link represent what’s actually in the vehicle. I mean, really; six 3.15” drivers (two with itty bitty tweeters) and two 7” (also with itty bitty tweeters?

Hey Vulcan, I don’t suppose you still have those HK speakers laying around and can check them for marks? I’d like to see what data can be found on them.
 

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If your happy with the volume of the HK system I would keep it as is.

I have replaced all my HK system speakers with Infinity Reference series and while the front doors 6x9’s have improved bass response, overall I think they could use more power and less roll off to the rear 6.5’s.
Also the 8-speaker marketing ploy is BS. There are six speakers: mid-highs in dash , mid-bass in front doors and two-way coaxials in rear doors. By their logic, I now have a 12-speaker system with two-ways all around, LOL!


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I am happy with the volume but have the same complaint as your other issue. New sources/recordings sound great, stuff from before 2010 or earlier just doesn't sound even close to as good as it should
 
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