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bose sound system help

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by hon, Apr 22, 2010.

  1. hon
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    hon New Member

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    Just bought an audi s3, 99 model, the head unit says bose when switched on, but the front door trim doesnt have the bose badge on it, as i seen some s3 has them, it this right?

    also the sound quality is quite rubbish to be fair, it doesnt sound clear like my mate audi tt does, i turn the treble to the highest setting (5) and the sound it still not sharpe. I looked at the boot where my cd changer is, it has a bose sub but its just not that great.

    Sorry but another problem is when i drive fast the cd player read no cd or error, but will come back to play after few minutes, any helpers what cause this problem?
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  3. s3dave
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    s3dave TFSI Hybrid

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    rip it all out it is all **** imo ...
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  4. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    Its not that ****....its just not as good as you might expect from the name it carries sadly.
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  5. s3dave
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    s3dave TFSI Hybrid

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    well it depends what you are satisfied with, imo i think it is quite poor, the sub is pathetic, if you listen to background music its fine, hence this was one of my first jobs and took the lot out...
    Last edited: Apr 22, 2010
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  6. ALPINE
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    ALPINE Yes its diesel, now cry u lost

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    [Apr 22, 2010]

    i done the same on my A4.. it sounds gash.. buy some after market bits and you will get much more bang for your buck. ANDYMAC (asn user) makes a aftermarket sub upgrade that sits in the same place your o/e one sits if you dont fancy subs in ya boot.
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  7. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    That's pretty standard for the Bose system in the A3/S3, which is particularly poor. Woolly sound, quite a bit of bass but horrible bass. Easiest upgrade you can do is pull the HU and snip the Bose EQ wire on the back. This is an earth on the HU that puts the HU into the "no highs, no lows, it must be Bose" flat EQ setting. Disconnecting this wire will give you back a smiley face EQ and you'll get a far more responsive Bass & Treble control. The wire you should snip is detailed on the top of the HU:
    [​IMG]
    But for a huge improvement add a proper sub and disconnect the tupperware unit. This will allow you to run the HU on minus Bass settings which dramatically improves the sound from the cabin speakers as well as providing proper clean punchy bass.
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  8. fran-s3
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    fran-s3 Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    Got to be honest I really like the Bose system only since I ditched the sub for my own fli sub.. And the headunit to a Alpine XD001 - so much better enough to keep it. And believe me I always upgrade the sound system in any new car I get to components so I do have a taste for good sound systems... ish! ;)
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  9. ALPINE
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    ALPINE Yes its diesel, now cry u lost

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    ALpine ftw.. cant beat a Alpine HU imho!
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  10. hon
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    hon New Member

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    Thanks andymac, i give that a go, if no joy i will have to buy new sub and change all the speakers, Im also having a bit of a problem with the volume switch, sometime i turn it, it goes jump to really loud and some time really quiet, don't suppose you know what it might be? thanks
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  11. ALPINE
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    ALPINE Yes its diesel, now cry u lost

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    its common as fook mate im sad to say. im sure theres a fix somwhere on here.
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  12. hon
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    hon New Member

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    Would this damage the headunit or blow any fuses because it's not earth? thanks
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  13. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 22, 2010]
    No it is the same HU as the non Bose system, and this is how it is wired on non Bose HU's, earthed for flat EQ when driving the Bose amp and left disconnected on non Bose systems.
    You'll need a new HU anyway as the volume problem you describe is an inherrent design flaw and will only get worse & worse until it is unusable:
    http://www.erta.ru/review/chorus-problem_eng.shtml
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  14. hon
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    hon New Member

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    would the concert 2 for an audi tt single cd player HU fit into the s3 3, also would it be compatible with the cd changer and back light would be the same?
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  15. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    Concert2 is a CANBUS controlled HU, so you need to ascertain whether your S3 is CANBUS, if it is not then you need to budget for a CANBUS emulator, otherwise the HU will turn off after an hour & won't show the DIS info.
    All Audi HU's work with the Audi changer
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  16. DJ_Troopa
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    DJ_Troopa K1 Driver

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    My BOSE is brilliant in mine. Plenty of power and nice bit of bass! No distortion and no flat points in different frequencies. My one is fully amplified as i found out a couple months ago after many people said it was only half amplified. I've got the Audi Concert stereo. There's no way i'll change the audio in the car.
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  17. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    I think I may snip my that wire then, I'll cut it so I can repair it if its **** though!!.

    Seems worth a punt.
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  18. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    intersting, my car doesnt have a BOSE wire on the diagram on the HU...odd as it has the sub and it says BOSE on the screen when its turned on, its even in the documentation for the car.
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  19. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    All A3's have a sub and the Bose on the screen is purely cosmetic, you can switch it on/off with VAGCOM, it means nothing.
    If it is a Bose system then you will have a Bose sub with two 4" drivers and a black front, if it is non Bose then it will have a single 6.5" speaker with a metal front.
    You will also have a black Bose amp for the cabin speakers in the drivers side boot cubbyhole.
    Sounds like the HU was swapped due to the dreaded volume issue, and the replacement was taken from a Bose equipped car.
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  20. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    Lucky for you you have no concept of what sounds good, just ensure you never hear a decent system!
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  21. finesse
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    finesse Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    :ninja::ninja:
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  22. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    I have a BOSE sub Andy, its got 2 cones, one on top of each other but slightly staggered....confused.com!.

    I'll have a poke about on the drivers side and see if anythings in there....not looking good so far!.
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  23. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    Yep, small black amp with an awful lot of wires going in and out of it in the drivers side cubby hole....under the light cluster.

    I have also found a discarded phone kit stuck up under the dash...had the head unit out and there's a couple of pink wires from the bak of the headunit (from the red plug) that look like they've been cut and not reattached to anything. Cant find what they're supposed to be connected to behind the dash.

    Although I've just put it all back together and tidied the wiring up a bit and it does seem to sound a bit 'deeper' so I'm not sure if I've pushed something home that had come unconnected?.

    All very confusing.

    T
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  24. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    The Bose wire detailed on the top of the HU may just say GA or GALA as that's what it's used for on the non Bose system. Are you saying there is no wire at all at that location? It's the same location on all Audi's so you should have something there.
    The big red plug is used with a phone kit so that's why it has cut wires on it.
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  25. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 23, 2010]
    I'll have another look in the morning, the sticker on the headunit differs tot he one you posted so I'll get a snap of it and post it up for you to have a look at.
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  26. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 24, 2010]
    Right, update...

    There was a small wire shown on the diagram marked 'GA', green and white.


    I took the plunge and snipped this and then checked that everything still worked (changer, all speakers etc) and its spot on.

    Had a bit of an 'adjust' of all the levels and its a LOT better now, the in car speakers seem to sound a lot better and there's a load more bass and trebel so happy days.

    Thanks for your help Andy :)
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  27. fran-s3
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    fran-s3 Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Apr 24, 2010]
    I still find it amussing that snipping the BOSE wire makes BOSE sound a lot better lol!

    Would it make any difference for me Andy although I'm running an Alpine headunit not the standard audi one which in itself has made a difference. (still fully BOSE'd though)
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  28. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 24, 2010]
    Yeah but the Bose "scientists" hate you actually having control over "their" sound
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  29. sportstractor
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    sportstractor Chugger

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    [Apr 24, 2010]
    wow, that is strange. I quite like the sound of my bose, although the subwoofer is rubbish.

    Problem iv got is some speakers flickering on and off when cornering. No doubt a lose connection somewhere, but havent got a clue where to start. Any ideas?
    #28
  30. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 24, 2010]
    Well I'm glad you came on here and told us how to over ride it Andy, its like a totally different system now....much punchier and a lot deeper sounding than before.

    I dont think the subs working any harder but the cabin speakers certainly sound like they're doing a bit more.
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  31. fran-s3
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    fran-s3 Active Member VCDS Map User

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    [Apr 25, 2010]
    Question Andy would you still recommend snipping the cable if your using an aftermarket headunit ie an Alpine X001? Weird as just upgrading the headunit made a massive difference in sound quality I found....
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2010
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  32. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 25, 2010]
    The cable does nothing on non-Audi HU's, so effectively by changing the HU you already have snipped it. No flat EQ on aftermarket HU's, thank god.
    #31
  33. badger5
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    badger5 www.badger5.co.uk Site Sponsor

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    [Apr 25, 2010]
    is this bose mod an audi s3 only thing or would my s6 bose benefit from such a simple mod too?
    #32
  34. AndyMac
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    AndyMac Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 25, 2010]
    All Bose systems have it
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  35. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 26, 2010]
    Its worth it, trust me!
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  36. badger5
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    badger5 www.badger5.co.uk Site Sponsor

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    [Apr 26, 2010]
    thanks.. I'll try this
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  37. <tuffty/>
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    <tuffty/> Badger 5 Edition Staff Member Moderator

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    [Apr 26, 2010]
    Works well... I did this to mine before I changed the HU altogether... you actually get tone control!!!... The S3 Bose system is much worse than the one you have in the S6 Bill tbh... the S6 sub sounds much better IMO... more depth and punch than the S3 item...

    Shall I add that to the todo list for the S6? ;P

    <tuffty/>
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  38. A3Tom
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    A3Tom Smell my finger.

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    [Apr 26, 2010]
    yep, I didnt think mine was 'that bad' before I got snipping but bloody hell...its sooooo stangeled through the BOSE EQ.

    T
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  39. 666markyboy
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    666markyboy Well-Known Member

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    [Apr 26, 2010]
    just done mine but not noticed any diff..... however when i first got the car i noticed front to rear fader didn't work.... did some reading up on the net and found that to be standard setting for BOSE... there was a link i think it's on WAKs TT site that told you how to dissable it via VAGCOM which i did and i noticed a huge improvement when i did that... so is cutting this wire just a hardware way of doing what i had already done via software and hence why i've noticed no further improvment ????
    #38
  40. s3gav
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    s3gav Member

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    [Apr 28, 2010]
    i just cut my wire
    what a difference it unbelievable how much better it is now i definitely recommend anyone with bose doing this
    thanx andymac
    #39

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