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Discussion Starter #1
Is there any way to remove the HK head unit and replace it with an aftermarket head unit and then bypass the HK Amp to send the headunit output directly to the speakers?

When I first got my 2005 MCSC, I really liked the HK and thought it sounded fine. Now that I've put an Alpine 9355 in my other car, I realize how poor the HK sounds (just my opinion).

Anyway, is the above question possible? I know Ian makes an adaptor for an aftermarket unit to go through the HK amp, but I rather just bypass it all together. Any ideas? Thanks.
 

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Yes, you can bypass the HK head unit and amp, but it doesn't stop there. The speakers are also 3 Ohm versus the standard 4 Ohm. This means you have to replace them as well. Also, the head unit is wired directly to the amp, not the speakers. While you can use part of the stock wiring to get the speaker signal to the amp location and then jumper it to the speaker wiring, you'll still need to run another set of wires from the HU to the amp for the rear speakers. To give you an idea of how this is all wired up, check out these:

Grey amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-grey.htm

Black amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-black.htm

You can simplify things be keeping the amp and speakers and using the HK enabler. But using the same speakers and amp means there won't be too much of an improvement in sound quality.
 

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Just to expand on the comments ...
not only are the HK speaker impedances unsuitable for direct driving from the head unit, but in addition there is no low/mid crossover in the doors, and the rear speakers are dual voice coil - you might be able to source a cheap crossover which will work "OK", and only use one of the two coils on the rear speakers, but that will also halve the power level.

But the fact that the amp will probably overload trying to drive the speakers is the biggest problem. New speakers as well as new head unit, and the need to strip the cars interior panels to run new wiring, is a significant commitment - and if you don't get the right speakers, or a good install, the sound likely still won't be as good as you want.


NOTE TO PROSPECTIVE BUYERS: Always try out the HK system with your favourite music, before ordering. Be sure you want it because if you change your mind, upgrading it is tricky.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the input, Ian. Always appreciated. I've been looking very carefully at your site in the downloads section where it describe essentially using the HK Amp as a "line out" for a "typical" amplifier with new speakers. It looks very enticing...I'm just wondering if you had any followup on that persons install? Did he like the results?
 

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Yes, you can bypass the HK head unit and amp, but it doesn't stop there. The speakers are also 3 Ohm versus the standard 4 Ohm. This means you have to replace them as well. Also, the head unit is wired directly to the amp, not the speakers. While you can use part of the stock wiring to get the speaker signal to the amp location and then jumper it to the speaker wiring, you'll still need to run another set of wires from the HU to the amp for the rear speakers. To give you an idea of how this is all wired up, check out these:

Grey amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-grey.htm

Black amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-black.htm

You can simplify things be keeping the amp and speakers and using the HK enabler. But using the same speakers and amp means there won't be too much of an improvement in sound quality.
Any updated
Yes, you can bypass the HK head unit and amp, but it doesn't stop there. The speakers are also 3 Ohm versus the standard 4 Ohm. This means you have to replace them as well. Also, the head unit is wired directly to the amp, not the speakers. While you can use part of the stock wiring to get the speaker signal to the amp location and then jumper it to the speaker wiring, you'll still need to run another set of wires from the HU to the amp for the rear speakers. To give you an idea of how this is all wired up, check out these:

Grey amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-grey.htm

Black amp harness:
http://gbmini.net/downloads/PGEN/hk-plug-black.htm

You can simplify things be keeping the amp and speakers and using the HK enabler. But using the same speakers and amp means there won't be too much of an improvement in sound quality.
Any up to date wiring diagrams?
 
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