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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, it looks like the ASK amp is going out. The PCM3 is powered but no sound. This happens intermittently. When the sound comes back, there is a loud pop. I've checked the plug connections under the seat.

I got a lot of info from a post by burrsg101 but still have some questions. (1) 987.2 ASK (Sound Package Plus) Wiring and amp upgrade how-to | Planet-9 Porsche Forum
I'm a decent wrench but lacking on the electronics.

I just want to replace the amp with aftermarket and leave the HU and 9 speaker system as is.

Would I need 7 channels to do this? My limited knowledge of amps was 1 channel per speaker. I kind of doubt the ASK uses 7 channels.

I am looking for advice on the type of amp to use. Number of channels and wattage. I assume all the speakers are 4 ohm, but don't know if that is correct.
Also, suggestions on how to hook up the amp would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks a bunch :):)

Non Bose SPP w/ 9 speakers
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Per the diagram you're showing (and the thread you linked), it looks like the amp is just a 4-channel setup, which makes sense. Not many multi-channel systems in cars (you get those in home theater, but music isn't often mixed that way).

The other thread implied that there are passive crossovers on each speakerset, which is good, because then you could certainly just replace the amp with a single one, as was done there. You just need a 4-channel amp and you should be all set. Sounds like the 130w x4ch that was from the other thread is certainly enough. Just make sure whatever you get can run 4ohm speakers, and you should be good to go...

Just to dive a bit deeper, my concern would be regarding the crossovers and the different power levels needed for the various speakers. I would hunt down the wiring to make sure the crossovers are really there, because otherwise you could burn out the tweeters if you push too much LF power to them. I would have thought that the ASK amp had all this stuff internally, but the other thread implies that they are external, in which case the job is certainly easier.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks Schwinn,

I guess my confusion comes from the hookup.
burrgs101 used 2 channels for the mids and tweets and 2 channels for the woofers. He left the center unpowered.

My research show the mid and rears in my setup are the same part numbers.
Would you hook the rears to the same channel as the mids? What about the center (my understanding is that the phone uses it).

Still researching the specs for the speakers and if crossovers are passive. Alldata is pretty weak, so having to find other sources.
 

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Earlier this year, I replaced my HU with an aftermarket one. I initially looked at a completely new system (HU, amp and speakers). I enjoy clean, full range music and am not compelled to make my ears bleed. I found a company called Car Audio Innovations (CAI) out of California. They helped me understand the system I have in my Cayman S (sound package plus) and make the right decisions on what I actually needed. I ended up only replacing the HU. I got the HU, a 2009 CS, SPP specific wiring harness from them and installed it with no issues. I'm not a salesmen for CAI, but they did me a solid with their products, product support and I'm thrilled with the result.

So back to your question - I have a 2009 CS with the SPP. Of the 9 speakers, the PCS powers the center dash and the 2 in the rear. The ASK amp powers the 2 larger door speakers (2 channels total) and the smaller door plus the tweets in the dash. The smaller door and dash tweets are on the same channel and have a factory capacitor installed to limit the frequencies to the dash tweets. This description looks consistent with the schematic you posted. So 9 speakers, 7 channels (since the dash tweets are on a common channel with the door mid drivers). Several companys make 6 and 8 channel amps with DSP capabilities (if you have the capacity to wire and tune with the DSP). I have a JL Audio 6 channel in one of my other cars and amp/DSP combo is absolutely incredible. This goes back to my clean, full range music comment from above.

Good luck. I consider myself a reasonably competent audio installer, but I didn't like the prospects of replacing the HU and amp given the combination of PCM/ASK powered speaker arrangement. Maybe I'm a wimp and maybe I'll tackle the prospect in the future. But for now, I'm more than happy with just the new HU.

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks Ed,

I'm not that great with electronics, but I have done a few audio improvements on previous cars. This 9-speaker system is more than I have tried to deal with before

I figured 7 separate channels as well. Not sure how to incorporate it into a 4-channel system. I have more learning and research to do.
 

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The thing is, it's not a 7 or 9 channel system at all. It's a 4-channel system with multiple speakers per channel. That's why you need crossovers to take the full-range sound and deliver it to the appropriate speakers (for sound and reliability reasons). As I said, I expected that the ASK amp did this internally, but the post you linked said there were crossovers in the speakers or elsewhere in the car. If that's the case, then you can simply power them and "assume" they're correct. My preference is to find them to ensure they're really there...

You could take a shortcut and just put a high-pass filter on the tweeters, to protect them, and let the other speakers take the full range... they won't be damaged from it, after all. The sub you may want to put on a low-pass so that the sound doesn't get "muddy".
 

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No problem. I'm happy to help more deeply, but you would have to do the heavy-lifting to find crossovers and trace wiring. I can't do that remotely for you (what's more, my car has a Bose setup which was previously replaced with an aftermarket unit, so I have nothing to look at and compare with).
 

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Jetstream - for what its worth, here was my thought process:

Speakers - personal choice. I'm fond of Alpines myself, but wouldn't rule out Focal or Hertz. Replacing the speakers in the doors and dash tweets isn't too bad for a days work

Amplifiers:

The good - Alpine makes an 8 channel DSP capable amp that I would imagine could be placed under the passenger's seat. The power and RCA cable install wouldn't be too difficult. The draw back that I see is the amp power. I'm not sure if 25w per channel would drive anything other than the factory SSP speakers. But, with such a small cabin volumetrically, it may do just fine with the SPP's or good replacement speaker selection (should a person want to change the speakers). The cost isn't awful even with a speaker change.

The bad - install a 4 channel amp in place of the ASK amp. Again, power and RCA cable install wouldn't be too bad depending on the amp power needs. I think the issue here is after going to all that trouble, keeping the door mid base and dash tweets on the same channel would be a crime. But, the speaker wiring would be straight forward and an amp this size may also fit under the passenger's seat. Again, the cost isn't bad.

The UGLY - go all in. Get an 8 channel DSP amp, split the door mid base and dash tweets into 4 channels and forgo the center dash channel. Eight speakers, eight channels. The DSP portion of the amp would greatly enhance the sound stage throughout the cabin and help control the mid base/tweet split. The ugly part of this option (to me) is placing the amp. I doubt an amp this size would fit under the passenger's seat so this leads itself to placing where the navigation computer sits (assuming an aftermarket HU is installed, and the navigation computer is removed). Power would be easy, RCA wouldn't be too bad, but a 16 conductor speaker cable would need to go from the amp to under the passenger's seat. With all the speaker connections under the seat and the ASK amp no longer required, this might not be a bad option. The unknown to me is what happens to the car if the Navigation Computer is disconnected. I haven't looked too deep into this, but the little I did look didn't yield anything. Cost - pretty high if you go all in with new speakers. The 6 channel JL Audio DSP amp I have in my other car is over a grand now and the 8 channel version is obviously more.

So this is the Analysis Paralysis thought process that I went thru. I have little doubt someone else can come up with more combinations and permutations. My personal favorite, go with the Alpine amp, see how the car responds and then decide on speaker replacement.

Ed
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ed and Schwinn

I really appreciate your inputs.

This is getting way more complex than I was expecting. I just want to replace the problematic ASK amplifier with a more reliable and better aftermarket unit. I'm Ok with the system as it is.
Heck, after 35 yrs of listening to airplane noise, my hearing is not that good anyway:( But no amp=no sound.

If it was just a simple rewire at the amp, that would be fine. But figuring out crossovers, which speakers to safely wire together on a single channel, etc.,etc. is too much for my limited knowlege.

I'll probably just wimp out and find a replacement ASK on fleabay.

Thanks again.
 

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Not a bad plan... replacing the amp is the easiest way to go, I think.

As I said, my car came with an aftermarket headunit. And I can see some 16-gauge copper wires peeking out from behind the side-panels on the center console. And, I have the Bose system... so I have no idea what they did or how they did it. It sounds ok, but distorts really easily. Eventually I may get in there, but for now I'm taking the easy way out as well and leaving it all alone... so I agree with your direction of taking the easy way out!
 
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