New speakers, radio and back up camera...

In Camper Entertainment - televisions, stereo systems, DVD players, CB radios, computer, internet
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Kentuckian
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B190 Year: 1993
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New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

This is the first posting for my project to upgrade the audio system of our 1993 B190. The plan is to replace all of the factory speakers, upgrade the factory radio and add a backup camera using the display of the new radio system.

Step one speakers:
The existing factory speakers are 6” x 8” paper cone speakers with a paper cone tweeter in the center. The speakers are marked as FORD parts so they came as FORD factory parts and are not Airstream aftermarket parts.

After removing the speakers from the six locations in the B190, I found the speaker diaphragms in reasonable condition. However, the foam rubber suspension on all speakers had dry rotted. (refer to photo)

I selected the Clarion SRG6832C 6” x 8” Multiaxial 3-way speaker as the replacement for the FORD factory speakers. To retain plug in compatibility with the factory wiring harness, I removed the factory plugs from the old FORD factory speakers and soldered those connectors to the Clarion speakers with a three inch length of jumper wire between the connector and the speaker. Care should be taken to maintain the same polarity on each speaker and FORD connector. This reduces potential for phase distortion. I’m sure you would never actually notice phase distortion in this listening environment… but I’m an Engineer and it just makes me feel better. <smile>

The Clarion SRG6832C bolted up fine to the factory mounting hole locations. I would guess that other brands of 6”x 8” speakers should work equally well.

Sound quality? The speaker replacement eliminated the popping and buzzing at volume that I had been hearing. I haven’t been too worried about sound quality yet since I still have the original FORD factory radio installed.

Clarion SRG6832C (left side) and FORD factory speaker (right side)
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Replacement speakers sml.jpg
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1993 Airstream B190
Marko Polo
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Marko Polo »

Nicely done! I was just getting on to ask what size the speakers are in the van as I've just upgraded the receiver. I put in a Kenwood Excelon KDC-X397 - and was surprised to find it didn't require any filing/modification of the van.

I'll be putting in speakers next - thanks for the recommendation. You also recommended the new headlights I believe, which was a huge upgrade for a low cost.

Final note: Order your receiver from Crutchfield. Their customer service is beyond helpful. My '94 B190 did NOT require bypassing the amp, so just get the wiring harness that comes with the system.
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

While I was working on the doors to install the speakers I clean and repainted the door panels. I used a can of "Dupli-Color Vinyl & Fabric" dark gray to spray the plastic panels mounted on the upper side of the front doors and the plastic panels of the side and back doors. Pretty close match to the FORD dark gray dash color. My panels were severely faded and stained and look a world better for the $6 can of spray paint and a little time.
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1993 Airstream B190
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

Marco Palco,
I agree, Crutchfield is a good company to deal with. However, I just can't bypass the employee discount I get on Clarion products. :)

Your Kenwood looks like a nice unit. I have had Kenwood products in the past and liked them. I'll be installing the Clarion VZ401. One of the things I'm after is the fold out display for the rear view camera which is in the installation que.

I find the Clarion speakers that I mentioned nicely balanced. Clear highs, midrange and mid bass. They are light on low bass though. I'm going to see how they sound with the more powerful source unit. I may add a subwoofer later.

Enjoy the new sound system!
1993 Airstream B190
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

Next step Receiver/DVD Player:
Got the dash diss-assembled to remove the FORD factory radio/cassette player. While I was in there I removed the instrument module opened up and clean it. I don't plan on opening the dash again anytime soon so while I was in there I replaced all the bulbs in the instrument panel with new ones. Now working on rewiring the radio harness. Power and front speakers was a breeze. The Airstream wiring on the rear speakers is looking strange. My test meter is showing shorts between all four rear speakers? I need to see what that is all about before finish rewiring.
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1993 Airstream B190
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

I finished installing my new radio and back up camera this weekend. Its a winner! Delighted with the performance.

Here is the Clarion VZ401 in closed position. Just fits the factory dash slot. This radio model can be played in this closed position but needs to be opened to adjust controls from the main display screen.
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Last edited by Kentuckian on Sat Mar 22, 2014 9:06 pm, edited 1 time in total.
1993 Airstream B190
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

Here is the menu view after pressing the "Open" button to open up the display. I use; AM, FM, USB, front audio/video jack, and back up camera functions.

Note that the display covers the HVAC controls. To use the HVAC controls the display can be retracted with the radio still playing. The display just clears the HVAC controls! Couldn't have been a better fit. The photo doesn't do the display justice. Nice crisp colors. The included remote control works all functions. I have the radio wired so the we can play the radio and DVD player without the key in the ignition.
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1993 Airstream B190
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

And here is the view with the back up camera active. The camera is mounted at the center edge of the door with the ladder. The camera is mounted about six inches from the bottom of the door. This is the sweet spot to cause the projected lines to show the right and left edges of where the B190 will be when backing up.
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1993 Airstream B190
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Keystone
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Keystone »

Nice work! I am especially jealous of your back up camera!
Keystone
1994
B190 4x4
galennelson
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by galennelson »

im supposed to get a knock off deck like yours, RFosgate front/rear speakers, sub and amp today! cant wait.

-im hoping the screen clears the controls it looks awful close....

rock on
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lido14co
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by lido14co »

Send some pics after your install. I've been using a UE Bluetooth boombox for the last year that's worked out great for camping but having only a cassette deck while driving is annoying. May as well have an eight track! Happy listening.


Cliff
FoCoKCCO
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by FoCoKCCO »

I'm about to replace my radio with something similar but when removing the front of the dash I ran into a problem removing the headlight switch. I unscrewed the small ring right behind the knob but how does the knob come out?

Thanks!
-Tony
1993 B-190
WBCCI: 8008
Fort Collins, CO
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Kentuckian
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Re: New speakers, radio and back up camera...

Post by Kentuckian »

Pull the light switch out to the on position. Then look at the base of the knob as you rotate the knob. You will see a notch. You can access a small spring clip that has to be pulled away from the metal shaft of the light switch allowing the knob to pull off. The small spring catches on grooves in the metal shaft. I used a small jewelers screw driver. A piece of stiff wire might also work.
1993 Airstream B190
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