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Does the awful sound improve when you upgrade the head unit?

 
Old 01-06-2014, 10:53 PM
  #16  
mcbit
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Originally Posted by Dennis C View Post
I agree with Mike's comments. The Bose system in my Cayenne actually sounds pretty good. I think it could be improved, but for everyday use it's not bad at all. The Bose system in my C4S was another matter...
Nuff said on both accounts!

... as far as the Cayenne is concerned, I really don't need any better in a car. I'm on my third Cayenne and all (including the 2005 CTT with Kenwood DNX7160 on original Bose speakers) have sounded pretty much the same.
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Old 01-07-2014, 02:31 PM
  #17  
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My Bose stock system sounds pretty good to tell you the truth. Used to have 2x12 and big system in my previous cars, but I don't listen to those music anymore and Bose stock unit fits my needs.
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Old 01-08-2014, 01:51 AM
  #18  
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Perhaps I'm just one of the unlucky ones. I doubt that my speakers have mold on them because the interior of my cayenne is like new. I wouldn't be surprised if something's going on with the amp because it's literally like listening to mono all the time. Also the sound imaging is such that the sound is centered in the middle of the car and doesn't fill the space. I never get this problem (even with AM radio) in other cars.

Thanks for the suggestions on the surround feature. I made sure it was turned off as it seems to further degrade the sound quality.

The mobridge, most hur harness and dennison units seem too costly for what you get. 2 of those options require the CD changer functionality to be switched on by the dealer (if you don't have a CD changer), adding even more to the cost. Lastly, the Becker audio input solution is mono.

I'm wondering if it would be possible to just re-wire and replace the front 2 speakers and not worry about the the rest of the car. I'd hate to rip out most of my interior to run new speaker wires but wondering if someone's tried just doing the front 2 door speakers?

Currently I'm using a bluetooth fm transmitter but those have their own issues. And the fact that the cigarette outlet doesn't shut off with the ignition adds to the inconvenience.
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Old 01-08-2014, 12:24 PM
  #19  
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thank you very much for the tip on turning off the 'surround' setting!!!
It's enough of a difference, that I've taken a $tereo upgrade off my list!!

While still not great sound, it's now at least become acceptable to this non-audiophile.

Thanks Mike/mudman 2, digitaljok and endless_corners
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Old 01-08-2014, 12:29 PM
  #20  
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Dunno why criticism of the audio system seems to be a no-no. IMO, Porsche deserves a lot of criticism for saddling a $90K+ car with a mediocre and difficult to upgrade audio system with audio performance hardly on par with base systems in mass market sedans costing a fraction of the Cayenne. When I bought my CTT, I had planned to replace the head and amp...until I was stung learning the cost impact of dealing with the gimmicky MOST fiber optic bus and the incompatibility of Bose components with industry standards.
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Old 01-08-2014, 12:44 PM
  #21  
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Like I said. The Bose system in my 2004 cayenne sounds better than the "base" system in my 2007 bmw x3. And definitely better than my 06 dodge ram, vw monsoon, ml430 Bose, c43 amg becker... Basically it sounds better than any of my previously owned vehicles. Again I don't think it's amazing but definitely adequate.
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:32 PM
  #22  
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Originally Posted by spooltime View Post
Since adding a Dension unit fueled by an iPod Classic, I have zero complaints about the sound quality in my Cayenne.
+2.

IMHO it's one of the better parts of the P!G.. it is much better than any BMW system I've heard, and much better than the premium HK system in SWMBO's Lexus RX.
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Old 01-10-2014, 03:27 PM
  #23  
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Originally Posted by deilenberger View Post
+2.

IMHO it's one of the better parts of the P!G.. it is much better than any BMW system I've heard, and much better than the premium HK system in SWMBO's Lexus RX.
I'll disagree with that. '08 BMW X5 with premium audio (or whatever they call it) I used own had the best audio system to date. I don't listen to music all to often, so I can't say I'm overly disappointed with sound quality in my Cayenne with Bose (08 model as well), but it is definitely not even close to what I had in X5.
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:56 PM
  #24  
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Originally Posted by DWC in Sedona View Post
Dunno why criticism of the audio system seems to be a no-no. IMO, Porsche deserves a lot of criticism for saddling a $90K+ car with a mediocre and difficult to upgrade audio system with audio performance hardly on par with base systems in mass market sedans costing a fraction of the Cayenne. When I bought my CTT, I had planned to replace the head and amp...until I was stung learning the cost impact of dealing with the gimmicky MOST fiber optic bus and the incompatibility of Bose components with industry standards.
Well said. The audio system is a complete joke. Furthermore, it's nearly impossible to upgrade. Being in the class of cars that Porsche is, they absolutely deserve criticism for this. It's totally ridiculous. I could go out and by the cheapest of cheap new cars and chances are the stereo system would be 10 times closer to audiophile quality.
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Old 01-10-2014, 11:57 PM
  #25  
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I really want to hear other people's cars. Perhaps there is variance from vehicle to vehicle. I swear most of you are butt hurt it doesnt hook up to your ipod.
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Old 01-11-2014, 02:36 PM
  #26  
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Originally Posted by mx22 View Post
I'll disagree with that. '08 BMW X5 with premium audio (or whatever they call it) I used own had the best audio system to date. I don't listen to music all to often, so I can't say I'm overly disappointed with sound quality in my Cayenne with Bose (08 model as well), but it is definitely not even close to what I had in X5.
You seem to have missed "BMW system I've heard".

The one's I've listened to extensively (and owned unless otherwise noted) are:

'87 535i needed a subwoofer badly - then it was just OK..
'91 525i not much there actually - anemic sound
'96 528i upgraded audio - and still no low end
'98 M3 convertible - "Business" system - later replaced the head with one from a later model (CD version) which actually made a big improvement in the sound. It was almost OK.
'01 M5 (friend's car) with the optional dual subwoofers and DSP - despite the subwoofers low end was lacking, and imaging was poor.
'02 M3 convertible with HK upgrade system, and extra subwoofer. Finally got some low end from the system by drilling holes in the back of the arm-rest area so the sub could be heard in the car instead of just in the trunk. It was marginally OK but not up to the Cayenne Bose system.
'03 525i Touring - with the optional subwoofer - was just OK. Low end was lacking.
'99 M-Coupe (had the premium system) - it provided background music OK, but not anything worth listening to.
'01 M-Coupe with premium system and the newer CD-53 based headunit. That one still lives in my garage. Happily the engine makes such nice noises that I'm not bothered by the lack of audio.
'08 335i (friend's car) - awful audio, even on Sirius, and an ungodly interface (early I-drive nightmare)
'12 335i (friend's newer car) - audio didn't improve a lot, but the I-drive interface did, it's almost user friendly.

I have not heard your X5 system. It might have been wonderful, if so it's an exception from the usual BMW crap (Harmon-Kardon and all..) If you don't have iPod or MP3 capability on your Cayenne system you may be disappointed in the sound, although the CD sound isn't awful.
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Old 01-12-2014, 11:56 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by DavieGravy View Post
Well said. The audio system is a complete joke. Furthermore, it's nearly impossible to upgrade. Being in the class of cars that Porsche is, they absolutely deserve criticism for this. It's totally ridiculous. I could go out and by the cheapest of cheap new cars and chances are the stereo system would be 10 times closer to audiophile quality.
I'm not trying to bash the Cayenne, however. The driving experience makes up for this minor flaw.
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:05 PM
  #28  
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I'm a bit of an Audiophile and appreciate quality systems. In my home I have McIntosh/Dyanudio setups and can most certainly discern quality from crap. I have to say, the Bose system in my P!G isn't all that awful (I'm not in love with it either). One has to consider the source of the music. If you're listening through an iPod type device you are largely going to be limited by the bandwidth therein, simple as that.

At home for background music I use AppleTV run through the aforementioned setup and it sounds ok. However, if I'm listening to music just for the sake of listening to music I transport through vinyl or DTS/DVD audio where there is a significant difference.

I used to think that it was important to have an audiophile grade setup in the car (my 911 has a McIntosh amp and Dynaudio speakers as did my former Benz that the P!G replaced) but at the end of the day it's just background noise. It was ridiculous to spend several thousand on a system that is limited by the environment.

For the commute to the office on Fridays and uber crappy weather days in addition to shuttlling my kids between baseball games and swim meets the Bose is just fine. Even in my Audi where I spend a bit more time than my P!G the "concert" system where I listen to an IPod/Sirius/Pandora is more than adequate for my pretentious audiophile sensibilities.
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:16 PM
  #29  
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I wonder how many people are *really* comparing apples to apples here?

I currently own 5 cars from the 2004ish generation (Mercedes, Porsche, Audi S6, VWs, Dodge) and 2 80s Porsches. Comparing the Cayenne to similar year cars the stereo is actually very good!! Comparing it to more modern cars and it starts to lack a bit.
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Old 01-12-2014, 02:23 PM
  #30  
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hmm...like I posted above, now that I have unchecked the 'surround', its acceptable...but really not more and still disappointing for a vehicle of this genre. But, I no longer feel compelled to change it and will 'suffice' on the long rides that I make in the summer (its my tow vehicle).
Having said that, my 05 Nissan Pathfinder's Bose system will absolutely and completely blow it away.
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