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      04-07-2011, 10:11 PM   #1
Second Lieutenant
DavidZ's Avatar

Drives: '11.5 E90 M3
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Maryland USA

iTrader: (1)

Zapco DC650.6, REF650.6 or JL HD900/5?

Hi there. I just joined the forum but I've been reading a lot of threads about audio upgrade options for my '11.5 E90 M3 with base "HiFi" audio. I'm fairly well versed in the car audio world having done several installs myself but I'm totally new to BMW. I'd like to replace the stock amp with a 5 or 6 channel one powering all new speakers in the stock locations. I've decided on Earthquake SWS 8s. Front doors will probably be Focal K2 Power 100KRS for ease of installation unless someone can convince me that the Morels are an easy install. I've read that the Morels require that the speaker grill tabs be cut and the grill be stuck to the speaker with Dynamat or whatever and, well, I like things to be fastened a little better than that. Is that only on the coupe though? Are the Morel's a "drop in" install on the sedan? What about the tweeters? Rear speakers are not a concern right now.

So anyways like the title says my question is really about what amp to choose. I definitely want one that will accept the balanced differential inputs from the HiFi system, but I'm not sure if I want an amp with internal sound processing or not. I could save a bit of money by getting a DC650.6 now vs. getting a REF650.6 or JL HD900/5 and an external processor later (to tune for a flat frequency response). Problems I see with the Zapcos are size and availability. Only problem with the JL is no equalization and I prefer class AB to class D. If I did go with a straight amp, if I found the sound did need equalization, not sure which processor to get. Which accept balanced differential inputs? I'd rather not use any kind of line converter. I think I read the Audison Bit One can't accept the BMW's output? Or was that for the EP or L7 system? I don't really like the JBL system as I have no use for its 8 channel amp and I dislike unnecessary features. Does anyone with similar setups even need equalization? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

'14 Honda CR-V [Monday-Friday]
'17 Chevy SS 6MT [Saturday]
'11 BMW E90 M3 6MT [Sunday]