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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Havent got my 3 yet so cant see for myself..........but

Has anyone had a look to see if a head unit would fit where the cig lighter is???

Not sure if this is the best place to put it but just want to see if it was even an option??? :roll:

Also.....are we loosing much sound quality wiring an amp through the stock head unit as opposed to wiring it through a good quality head unit with an if we could install one.
 

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three said:
Havent got my 3 yet so cant see for myself..........but

Has anyone had a look to see if a head unit would fit where the cig lighter is???

Not sure if this is the best place to put it but just want to see if it was even an option??? :roll:

Also.....are we loosing much sound quality wiring an amp through the stock head unit as opposed to wiring it through a good quality head unit with an if we could install one.
It may be a real tight fit in the cig light location.. and mounting would be diffcult. Can mounting could be ok, but would look better ISO mounted with a trim ring.

Yes and no. Yes because the circuits inside HUs that kick out 4v or 8v are a lot better and cleaner than outboard EQs/processor. Most high end HUs kick out balanced outputs instead of typical, so there is less chance of noise and flutter.

No, because most people wont hear the difference.
 

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I'm almost positive the cig light area is too small. From a little eye balling (when I was also considering it), the top is large enough, but it slopes inwards as it goes down, and it looks too small at the bottom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks VaBoom, you have been a great source of info and your efforts (in sharing that info) is much appreciated.

bknass, same goes for you....I was wondering why no one else had thought of it or mentioned it, but it looks like you have. You still havent put it to bed for me though (having only eyeballed it). I might have to get out the tape measure.
 

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Oops, I just re-read what you posted. I thought you were asking about the ashtray area! (That was the place I was considering).

I just measured and that would be a dandy place to put the CD player. The only problem that might arise is that it might be hard to mount the head unit. It looks like there is only enough room to ISO-mount it unless you want to take off the center part of the console every time you want to pull the thing out.

Definitely an interesting place to stick it if nothing else. If you could relocate the cig lighter right next to the shifter in that little divit, that would be pretty cool. Then you could have a place for an LCD plus a standalone DVD player.
 

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I was thinking about mounting a deck where the lighter is too. I don't think it is deep enough back there. I tried to take it apart but ran out of time and had to put it back together. I noticed that it looks like there were air ducts running down behind the ashtray area. This could be a problem, without a lot of cutting I don't think a deck could fit there.
 

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I just got an audio store to install a deck where the lighter and ashtray goes. It looks pretty good. There were air ducts that had to be removed but they came out pretty easily and there was a little trimming to be done in order for the deck to fit. They put in a custom trim piece covered in vinyl and it looks really good. I got a Kenwood 922 deck with 5volt preouts and my subs were so much cleaner and louder than when using the high level input. This deck also flips around when it’s off so you can't even really tell it's there, so hopefully it won't get stolen. I will post some pictures of it some time this weekend.
 

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Sweet, definately sport some pics for all to see.
 

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Here are some of the pictures of my deck that was installed. Sorry about the quality. It looks better in person. The flash on the camera highlighted the texture of the vinyl.




If anyone in the GTA is interested I got it installed at Car Audio Haven in Brampton. (905)459-2277
 

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wow thats nicely done.

does that place have a website? how much did they charge?
 

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No the store doesn't have a website, they are fairly new but they do nice work. They charged me about $200 for the install because there is a little bit of trimming to do as well as making the trim piece. It took them about two and a half hours to do it because it was the first mazda 3 they worked on. I think its well worth it. They are doing this CRX in their shop with a full fibreglass enclosure for four 12's. It looks so sweet.
 

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Wait. So you lost the ashtray too?? or no??

That was the spot I'd been cosidering for certain items, but since then I've been toying with other idea. I hate to lose the LCD display for everything (if you replace the HU, you would have two clocks), but I''ve been thinking HU down there you have it, a hidden DVD nav unit (glove of course!) and then going with a 6.5" or 7" LCD display for the spot where the radio is now. The only real issue would be some of the curves. It would need to be custom (for now, until a mold is created), but I think it could work.

The hardest part - no one seem to make the stand alone touch display, they all fold out, which I HATE (too much to break). However, Sony makes a BEUTIFUL LCD display that have about 2-3 buttons on it, and mounts in that spot perfect.

Of course, that's another $2.5K when you add all the components together..... That will be the Christmas task... ;)
 

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That is actually what I am looking into doing after the box project is finished tomorrow after I carpet it(it hits nice and fits like a glove. more pics of the box will be up tomorrow). I have my old carputer form the eclipse and am looking for a spot for the LCD I like having the stock head unit and am looking to convert the spot by the ash tray and lighter to house the LCD since it would only require a small bit of fiberglassing, I looked into also just removing the stock HU and glassing a custom dash piece for it but I like the stock look and am still having problems with gettign rid of the steering controls now thta I've gotten so used to them :)
 

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Yeah - those steering controls are wonderful!!

I wish that someone (like alpine/pioneer/sony) would make the touch nav unit only - without all of the mp3/am/fm stuff. I like those features, but like you said - there's still a lot of class in the head unit.

I suppose it may not be too hard to rewire the steering controls - if you knew your new unit just as good.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
What I was getting at when I started this thread was if the HU could be placed where the cig lighter is and not touch the ash tray part.

What was done in the picture looks alright but I dont want to have to use any plastic surround, as it can look tacky if it doesnt match, I just want to fit it in the slot.

Can anyone confirm a HU will fit in there???
 

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It should fit in there, but the recessed portion of that whole are under the A/C control might cause a problem.
 

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The ash tray and the cig lighter part are attached together. You would have to cut them apart and it would not really hook in very well because it is held with screws in the bottom and clips at the top.
 
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Can we fit a DVD player in there????

I'd also like to know if we installed a DVD plyer, is there anyway that we can make it function without loosing the LCD function. I mean, making the DVD player function as an individual unit as itself???
 
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