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Discussion Starter #1
So what's the best bang-for-the-buck horn that I can get for MY2018 XV? I hate its stock horn and I'm using it for about 2 years now and I feel that it's really time for an upgrade. Is it easy to install a horn by yourself?
 

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I’ve got hella sharptones also. They were pretty easy to install and the stock horns were really underwhelming. There were times with the stock horns where I was completely ignored and didn’t phase other drivers at all. The point of the car horn is to get people’s attention (and hopefully prevent an accident), and the hella sharptones are much better at that. Sometimes there’s even a little jump from other drivers, which is kinda funny too...
 

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I went with PIAA Superior Bass Horn (330/400Hz), part # 85115.

They're louder, sound great, don't need a relay and fit in the OEM locations but I did have to bend the lower bracket a little bit.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Some folks here like Hella horns. It's on my to do list, too, as I hate the "meep meep" of the OEMs.

There are loads of posts and threads about them. Try searching for Hella.

Here's one: https://www.subaruxvforum.com/threads/diy-hella-horn-install-video.154186/#post-1790842
I'm running hella sharptones. I like the sound vs stock but in practicality I don't know that they're more effective.
I’ve got hella sharptones also. They were pretty easy to install and the stock horns were really underwhelming. There were times with the stock horns where I was completely ignored and didn’t phase other drivers at all. The point of the car horn is to get people’s attention (and hopefully prevent an accident), and the hella sharptones are much better at that. Sometimes there’s even a little jump from other drivers, which is kinda funny too...
Are Sharptones generally more preferred compared to the older Supertones?

I went with PIAA Superior Bass Horn (330/400Hz), part # 85115.

They're louder, sound great, don't need a relay and fit in the OEM locations but I did have to bend the lower bracket a little bit.
Interesting. Are these as famous as the Hella Horns? I'll see if I can find a review that compares these and the Hella Horns.
 

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Are Sharptones generally more preferred compared to the older Supertones?
From what everyone says on other forums, the supertones are louder than sharptones and usually come in more colors. The sharptones are a bit louder than stock, and have a different frequency range than stock. Lots of people end up going with sharptones it looks like. I ended up painting my sharptone covers to match the orange of the vehicle. I think the real difference here is mostly preference. Can’t attest to the PIAA horns.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
From what everyone says on other forums, the supertones are louder than sharptones and usually come in more colors. The sharptones are a bit louder than stock, and have a different frequency range than stock. Lots of people end up going with sharptones it looks like. I ended up painting my sharptone covers to match the orange of the vehicle. I think the real difference here is mostly preference. Can’t attest to the PIAA horns.
I see. For the Sharptones, do you really see the yellow grill from the outside if you decide to keep the stock color? My 2018 Crosstrek is Dark Blue.

Also, do you absolutely need the wiring harness and bracket in the bundle sold by subimods?
 

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I see. For the Sharptones, do you really see the yellow grill from the outside if you decide to keep the stock color? My 2018 Crosstrek is Dark Blue.

Also, do you absolutely need the wiring harness and bracket in the bundle sold by subimods?
They’re kinda hard to see through the sock grill because of the grill shape itself. If you do want to see them, I put a grillcraft mesh grill on and you can see them very well with that.

You need some kind of wiring harness. They have a good one and I have theirs. The kit may not be the most cost effective way of getting horns, a bracket, and harness. I got mine separate from different retailers and saved some money.
 

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You need the wiring harness if you want the full effect of the hella horns, they draw more power than the stock wiring can provide.

to further my earlier comment above, I think removing the horns from their original mounts to use the subimods bracket has reduced their volume. I have read that the original mounting tab is part of the horn's design. If I were to do it over I would either mount the Hellas as-is in the stock horn positions (with a wiring harness), or get the piaa horns listed above by Doca.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
They’re kinda hard to see through the sock grill because of the grill shape itself. If you do want to see them, I put a grillcraft mesh grill on and you can see them very well with that.

You need some kind of wiring harness. They have a good one and I have theirs. The kit may not be the most cost effective way of getting horns, a bracket, and harness. I got mine separate from different retailers and saved some money.
Do you mind mentioning here where specifically did you buy those parts separately to save a bit of money?

You need the wiring harness if you want the full effect of the hella horns, they draw more power than the stock wiring can provide.

to further my earlier comment above, I think removing the horns from their original mounts to use the subimods bracket has reduced their volume. I have read that the original mounting tab is part of the horn's design. If I were to do it over I would either mount the Hellas as-is in the stock horn positions (with a wiring harness), or get the piaa horns listed above by Doca.
I see. With ease of installation as the advantage of the PIAA horns, what advantage do the Hella Horns have over them?

If you can mount the Hella Horns as-is in the stock horns positions, why would one still need that Subimod bracket?
 

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The horns and torque solutions bracket I purchased from different sellers on eBay, and the harness from Subimods.

You could certainly try to mount them in the stock positions but I’m not sure if the bolts/holes are the right size.
 

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@Doca Do you have any further comments on the PIAA horns that you recommended? Thanks.
Not really.

I looked at several Hellas and a few other companies as well but knew that fancy looks would be unnoticed unless I addressed the grill. I kinda wanted to do it but it wasn't worth it to me.
I can barely see a portion of the upper mounter PIAA's silver label behind the grill but I know where to look. My wife didn't see it until I pointed it out.

I also knew that I'd have to install a new bracket to mount both front and center to get the visible affect of the Hellas. That would have made wiring and mounting easier. Also, it's easy to unclip the lower OEM horn harness.


In the end, I wanted a deeper tone and I got that from PIAA.

PIAA's Superior Bass Horn pipes 112 db (db means almost nothing once installed in the car) @ 330 Hz and 400 Hz.
The Sharp tone M23S announces themselves with 115 db @ 350 Hz and 415 Hz.
I had considered tri-tone Hella Super tone B113 (118db, 300/375/500 Hz) but at 123mm, I was concerned they'd be too large.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Not really.

I looked at several Hellas and a few other companies as well but knew that fancy looks would be unnoticed unless I addressed the grill. I kinda wanted to do it but it wasn't worth it to me.
I can barely see a portion of the upper mounter PIAA's silver label behind the grill but I know where to look. My wife didn't see it until I pointed it out.

I also knew that I'd have to install a new bracket to mount both front and center to get the visible affect of the Hellas. That would have made wiring and mounting easier. Also, it's easy to unclip the lower OEM horn harness.


In the end, I wanted a deeper tone and I got that from PIAA.

PIAA's Superior Bass Horn pipes 112 db (db means almost nothing once installed in the car) @ 330 Hz and 400 Hz.
The Sharp tone M23S announces themselves with 115 db @ 350 Hz and 415 Hz.
I had considered tri-tone Hella Super tone B113 (118db, 300/375/500 Hz) but at 123mm, I was concerned they'd be too large.
I see. So with the PIAA, you can use the existing wire harness for the stock horns and install both horns in the stock horn locations? Do you have to remove the stock horns altogether?

How and why did you have to bend the lower bracket?

Sorry, I'm a car noob and I'm just starting to learn here. Thanks.
 

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I see. So with the PIAA, you can use the existing wire harness for the stock horns and install both horns in the stock horn locations? Do you have to remove the stock horns altogether?

How and why did you have to bend the lower bracket?

Sorry, I'm a car noob and I'm just starting to learn here. Thanks.
No worries, sharing and learning are what a place like this is all about.

Yuppers, I used the OEM wiring and mounting locations. You will have to remove the OEM horns. The upper one is stupid easy; just pop off the clips holding the plastic cover directly behind the grill and its right there. The lower one is a more difficult to access.

I didn't remove the bumper fascia to access the lower horn as many people seem to have done. I unclipped the relevant plastic panels below the engine and wheel well. I didn't have to remove a single panel but I folded up the small panel directly below the horn to give me clear access. It took me a while to get it right but I think I could do it in about 10 minutes now.

I may have some pics of the process as I was intending to do an alternate installation method DIY. I think I got too frustrated as I'd decided to make it a learning experience by removing as much as I reasonably could just to see what would have given the easiest and cleanest access, from the top. I figured it out when I removed the filter box but while access was awesome, I couldn't see what I was doing so I went back underneath.

I had to bend the bracket because of the shape of the PIAAs. I can't remember if it was the position of the wiring connectors or the shape of the bell. I'm leaning towards the wiring connectors but regardless, a little bend in the bracket made everything alright.

298323


I believe a round horn, like the Hella Sharp Tone, would drop right in.

Edit: Almost forgot; If getting the PIAA, you'll have to be prepared to cut the OEM connectors off and solder/crimp on standard connectors. Super easy for the upper, more challenging for the lower. The Hella Super Tone horns come with a relay so you'll have to wire that in and disconnect the OEM horns, unless you want to three or four horns.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
No worries, sharing and learning are what a place like this is all about.

Yuppers, I used the OEM wiring and mounting locations. You will have to remove the OEM horns. The upper one is stupid easy; just pop off the clips holding the plastic cover directly behind the grill and its right there. The lower one is a more difficult to access.

I didn't remove the bumper fascia to access the lower horn as many people seem to have done. I unclipped the relevant plastic panels below the engine and wheel well. I didn't have to remove a single panel but I folded up the small panel directly below the horn to give me clear access. It took me a while to get it right but I think I could do it in about 10 minutes now.

I may have some pics of the process as I was intending to do an alternate installation method DIY. I think I got too frustrated as I'd decided to make it a learning experience by removing as much as I reasonably could just to see what would have given the easiest and cleanest access, from the top. I figured it out when I removed the filter box but while access was awesome, I couldn't see what I was doing so I went back underneath.

I had to bend the bracket because of the shape of the PIAAs. I can't remember if it was the position of the wiring connectors or the shape of the bell. I'm leaning towards the wiring connectors but regardless, a little bend in the bracket made everything alright.

View attachment 298323

I believe a round horn, like the Hella Sharp Tone, would drop right in.

Edit: Almost forgot; If getting the PIAA, you'll have to be prepared to cut the OEM connectors off and solder/crimp on standard connectors. Super easy for the upper, more challenging for the lower. The Hella Super Tone horns come with a relay so you'll have to wire that in and disconnect the OEM horns, unless you want to three or four horns.
Basing from these info, I would take it that the Hella Horns would be easier to install but more expensive overall (with all the brackets, harness, etc.)?

Is there any advantage of using a relay and a wiring harness for the Hella Horn? I guess I just want to understand what's the difference between using a relay and a custom wiring harness vs. not using any of those at all? I'm confused.

Also, if you cut the OEM harness and replace it with standard connectors for the PIAA, wouldn't you lose your warranty?
 

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Basing from these info, I would take it that the Hella Horns would be easier to install but more expensive overall (with all the brackets, harness, etc.)?
Yeah, that's about how I read it but I don't think the total price would be much different.

Is there any advantage of using a relay and a wiring harness for the Hella Horn? I guess I just want to understand what's the difference between using a relay and a custom wiring harness vs. not using any of those at all? I'm confused.

Also, if you cut the OEM harness and replace it with standard connectors for the PIAA, wouldn't you lose your warranty?
The short version is that those Hellas require more power than the OEM relay supplies, apparently. I don't know why it needs so much more power especially as there's only 6db difference between them and PIAAs. That's a db value difference less than the "volume" of normal human breathing.

I haven't seen an installation but YouTube can probably walk you through both PIAA and Hella's installation. That may also address some questions, even if not Subaru specific.

You can expect to loose your warranty on the immediate wiring harness because you cut it but, as I understand it, they'd have to prove that the changes you made are what caused a reported problem. However, that is probably country specific and I have no idea how the Republic of the Philippines, Subaru Philippines or Motor Image Pilipinas, Inc handles that.
 
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