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Unread 04-20-2009, 12:00 AM   #1
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Default Just got my 2005 Passat GLS 1.8T AWD!

Please excuse the crappy dealer photos, I will replace them with photos taken on my digital camera at higher quality but here it is:


Anyway, I was told in my other thread (considering a BMW 3-series) that modding was my next step

This is going to be my car for a good while, a minimum of three years of but most likely a bit longer provided she run well. I haven't considered much aside from cosmetics such as tinted windows or replacing the chrome trim with black (dont ask why, I just never liked the chrome trim around the windows)

So, where should I start? I would prefer this to be an ongoing project, nothing too sporty where it looks like I should wear sunglasses and have spiky gelled hair, but I don't want this to look like some grandpa's car. I am looking at building a priority list of upgrades for the future. For example, I am considering replacing the stock sound system with something aftermarket, preferably with an mp3 hookup.

I would like to add that I have a 3 year unlimited mile warranty and I do not wish to jeopardize the warranty so don't suggest any mods that might, thanks lot guys I am excited to get my feet wet!
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Unread 04-20-2009, 12:41 AM   #2
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Nitro?

But seriously, adding a new stereo is simply - you can get a nice one for under $150, plus $15 for the faceplate adapter, and $15 for the wiring, and you're set. Installation takes anywhere from 10 minutes to half an hour. Speakers can be a bit more complicated depending on your car (rear speakers in my car involved dismantling the entire back seat, rear quarter panel interior, and a crapload of other stuff) but if you have a repair manual and you're not in a hurry, it shouldn't be a problem.

If you're looking to improve the sound, you might start with a cold air intake, since that shouldn't void your warrenty (correct me if I'm wrong) and eventually couple that with a better exhaust system.
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Unread 04-20-2009, 07:52 AM   #3
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The car looks great man!

Many people start with the stereo system as their first mod as factory stereos are generally not all that great.

How much are you looking to spend on your audio system?

All I have in my Jeep right now is a Sony HU with a cheap amp powering my factory speakers and the difference in quality and volume is night and day. (I can hear music on the HWY now!)
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Unread 04-20-2009, 01:17 PM   #4
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Quote:
Nitro?

But seriously, adding a new stereo is simply - you can get a nice one for under $150, plus $15 for the faceplate adapter, and $15 for the wiring, and you're set. Installation takes anywhere from 10 minutes to half an hour. Speakers can be a bit more complicated depending on your car (rear speakers in my car involved dismantling the entire back seat, rear quarter panel interior, and a crapload of other stuff) but if you have a repair manual and you're not in a hurry, it shouldn't be a problem.

If you're looking to improve the sound, you might start with a cold air intake, since that shouldn't void your warrenty (correct me if I'm wrong) and eventually couple that with a better exhaust system.
Hahaha @ nitro, I'd kill myself pretty quickly I think. Or at the very least kill my car!

So you think I could install an aftermarket stereo myself? I consider myself pretty handy with computers and it seems as if this is not much different. Is it better to buy online and install myself or go to best buy and allow them to install for me? I think the speakers are pretty solid, but the quality could be improved and the best place to start is the source. So that seems like a great idea!

I am also open to suggestions as to what is a good one. A CD changer would be a plus, but not necessary. I also require an MP3 input, since most of my songs are on my iPod. Is there a marked difference in sound quality between a CD in the CD player and an MP3 player playing through the MP3 hookup? I just like the ipod for the convenience of changing bands/genres etc.

I listen to mostly metal, with some hip/hop as well.

This will be the first car I've put really any money into at all, since I decided my 97 civic wasnt worth it. What sort of things could I expect from adding a cold air intake, and what sort of exhaust would be best for me? I must stress that getting an exhaust that is louder than stock is definitely a negative, haha.

Quote:
The car looks great man!

Many people start with the stereo system as their first mod as factory stereos are generally not all that great.

How much are you looking to spend on your audio system?

All I have in my Jeep right now is a Sony HU with a cheap amp powering my factory speakers and the difference in quality and volume is night and day. (I can hear music on the HWY now!)
I think spending $200-300 is definitely an option if it really future-proofs me on the audio, but as little as $150 is fine as well. I am not sure that I need to replace the speakers though. Also if I was to replace my stock stereo, could I sell it? Or should I hang onto it til I resell the car and take out my aftermarket stereo when I get a new one?

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Unread 04-20-2009, 01:46 PM   #5
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With the new head unit, you might consider getting one that has an SD card slot - that way instead of using cds/your MP3 player, you can just pull the SD card out of your MP3 player (if it has one) and plug it into your head unit - I know a guy with one of those and it's so convenient. I personally always install myself - I think its a waste of time to pay $50 for Bestbuy install, but if you have the $50 and not the time, I don't *think* they could screw it up too badly. lol

Honestly, crimping the wiring harness is the hardest part, and you justh ave to match the colors. (Or you could spend $40 on a premade "quick" harness - you buy one from the stereo to universal, and one from universal to your vehicle).

Honestly, I wouldn't try to sell your stock stereo, as you'll get next to nothing for it - just save it for when you want to sell the vehicle.

As for the exhaust, I know flowmaster has some that aren't too loud, but it still might be a bit louder than stock. The CAI will add slight horsepower/fuel efficiency gains, but without the exhaust, it won't reach full potential. A good CAI is about $250-$300, I'm not sure how hard it would be to install on your vehicle. If you decide to mod for power, though, the CAI/exhaust is the place to start.
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Unread 04-20-2009, 01:51 PM   #6
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What are some good head unit's with an SD card slot?

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Unread 04-20-2009, 04:09 PM   #7
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I'm not very up to date on current head units, as I haven't shopped for one in a while, but Pioneer is generally considered to be one of the top brands that doesn't cost an arm and a leg, and Sonys usually give you a pretty good bang for the buck, though I don't think they're usually quite as high-quality as Pioneer. I'd definitely check out www.crutchfield.com - they've usually got decent prices, and excellent customer service. (I've even called them before when I need a schematic for an outdated vehicle or head unit, and they've always been terrific.)

If you've got a Frys Electronics nearby, you might see what they've got to offer as well.
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Unread 04-20-2009, 04:46 PM   #8
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I am a bit of an audiophile myself so I have to have my CD's because there is a subtle difference between wave files (cd format) and mp3 files (Ipod format), and I can tell and it bothers me.

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Unread 04-20-2009, 09:03 PM   #9
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lol, soon enough that'll be like saying you still carry a floppy disk.

(But yeah I know what you mean - I've got several dozen cds in my car too.)
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Unread 04-20-2009, 09:58 PM   #10
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lol, soon enough that'll be like saying you still carry a floppy disk.

(But yeah I know what you mean - I've got several dozen cds in my car too.)
99% of my Mp3 music (some 4500 songs) are from my own cd's that I converted over with audiograbber to MP3 format. A lot of people are confused by my playlist, they are like "Dude, how do you have the entire CD???" as though I have some secret website or something, and I'm like "no, I actually buy the CD and legally convert my music over."

Right now I've got Seether, Avenged Sevenfold, Three Days Grace, and Breaking Benjamin in the cd changer, and I think Creed's Weathered, just an older favorite.

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