Upgrading an in-dash receiver, Musicar style
By Patrick Rollins, Musicar Northwest
Photos by Patrick Rollins, Pierce Barrett, and Nick Akin
The client approached us at Musicar looking for CarPlay for a recently-acquired 2013 Porsche Cayenne with PCM navigation and the Bose sound package. We discussed various options, and the client really liked the idea of a larger-format display integrated into the interior (Specifically, the Sony XAV-AX8000).
He originally wanted the standard, free-floating display in front of the vents, but then he asked about recessing it slightly. We looked at the vehicle carefully, and I suggested flushing the display into the dash. We cautioned the client that this would be time-intensive, but he wanted us to work up the time and materials required. We frankly thought the price tag would scare him off.
Mapping out the tasks involved, we came up with 40 hours of installation and fabrication time for the dash work (there were other tasks not included in that total, such as a rear camera and an audio upgrade). Some clients would have changed their goals at that point, but this client said “Let’s do it!” He didn’t just have us integrate the Sony receiver into the Bose system – he also agreed with our audio upgrade proposal, which was installing an 8-channel amplifier/9-channel DSP in place of the Bose main system amplifier. This delivered more power per speaker, and allowed us to retune the system from a two-seat presentation to a driver-optimized presentation with better fidelity (and better bass from the factory subwoofer).
Here’s what it took:
Well, we did end up a bit over the 40 hours quoted – we were between 40 and 50 for the radio and dash work, plus the camera install and amplifier integration.
We thought we had 4 or 5 hours of buffer in there, but we did have to engineer the modification process.
Next time that whole thing will go a lot quicker, and I’d like to change the modification to the vent caps so they blend into the radio bezel better.