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Discussion Starter #1
Today I actually got to order my '01 M5. FWIW, I decided on Royal Red with Caramel All-Leather interior.

Thanks to everyone who gave their thoughts on color selection (Carbon Black was a close second).

Has anyone heard the 'enhanced audio' option? Would I be better served to save the money and put it toward an aftermarket stereo? I am inclined towards aftermarket stereos anyway, assuming it can be well-integrated. Any thoughts on this option would be appreciated (I think I only have a day or so to cancel the option).
 

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Congratulations! The royal red/carmel combo is beautiful.

Forget about aftermarket stereo. You can upgrade the speakers, and potentially add outboard amps, but changing the central brains is practically impossible since it is the same unit used for many other functions. It is tighty integrated with the display and knobs which are used to interact with the OBC and the Nav system as well as the sound system.

I don't think the stock system is all that great, but it isn't awful either. I don't know what the "enhanced audio" system is - do you have more details?
 

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As I understand it, the enhanced audio option adds a subwoofer, and probably a few more speakers.

That's really the point though, I *don't* have any more details. I'll be sure to post after my dealer talks to BMWNA.

Does anyone know if the stereo system can be upgraded easily (in other words, does the factory head unit have low-level outputs that can be used to bypass the factory amplifier)?

Thanks again...

-jay
 

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The "M Audio w/Enhanced Bass" (0752) option adds 2 extra subwoofers, and costs $1200. I don't know where they will be installed, or whether these 2 subs will take away some space in the trunk (major concern).

Given my experience with M5 audio. I'd say don't bother. The stock stereo's bass response is so bloated, and the midrange and high frequency response transparency and smoothness simply isn't quite there. Overall, it's a decent car stereo system, but already needs a bit of tweaking as is to get the tonal response that I like. The 7-band EQ may not be enough to do the job, and the room-echo processing is a joke.

I think I might have heard better midrange and high frequency smoothness in my old 96 Civic.


I am in no way a car audio snob (never put anything aftermarket in any car I own), but I do own decent home hifi system to be my reference point.
 

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All,

I would forgo any factory upgrades. I have spoken with two reputable car audio experts. Both agree that you do not want to mess with the front end of the system. They do recommend that the system can be upgraded by changing the amps, speakers and even the CD changer. The cost is anywhere from $2400 to $5000 depending on the brand of equipment that is being used.

Of course they recommend that this will vastly improve the quality of the system. I am sure this is probably true, as I have had some experience with aftermarket equipment. I have found it to be twice the quality at half the price of any OEM system.

It is ashame that you need to go to this extreme to get a quality system, but this is one of the corners that they cut and a place that can be vastly improved.

As a side note, all of the aftermarket equipment can be installed in the factory openings and will probably reduce the weight of the OEM system. The two way speakers in the rear shelf are housed in some type of tube system that can be done away with.

Happy listening,

Mark
 

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I opted for the M-audio on my week 36. I don't want to mess with the stock system unless I absolutely have to. I chalked it up as roughly a $1000 gamble. I'm hoping for the money there is a little more than just extra bass added since I've heard the system is already bass heavy. I'm chancing the M-audio option hoping I'll be content with it and don't have to go to a aftermarket system.
 

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I did the same thing for the same reasons.

BTW, I also have a week 36 build and my dealer contacted me today to let me know that production is ahead of schedule and the car is finished! It is waiting for a ship date.

Mark
 
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