1. Welcome to 4Runners.com!

    You are currently viewing as a guest! To get full-access, you need to register for a FREE account.

    As a registered member, you’ll be able to:
    • Participate in all 4Runner discussion topics
    • Transfer over your build thread from a different forum to this one
    • Communicate privately with other 4Runner owners from around the world
    • Post your own photos in our Members Gallery
    • Access all special features of the site

DIY 3.5" JL Audio dash speaker upgrade - Wow!

Discussion in 'Audio & Video' started by 57HotrodVW, Oct 24, 2018.

  1. Oct 24, 2018 at 9:55 AM
    #1
    57HotrodVW

    57HotrodVW [OP] New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2018
    Member:
    #6664
    Messages:
    22
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Texas
    Vehicle:
    '18 Cavalry Blue TRD Pro
    After seeing a few posts about speaker upgrades, I decided to do one to the dash speakers in my '18 TRD Pro, and thought I'd share. In short, this lower cost, relatively easy upgrade is well worth it, and makes a huge difference in sound quality!

    Rather than just going with a popular tweeter upgrade (aka, ), I decided to go with 3.5" coaxial speakers from JL Audio - the C2-350x models. These full range speakers cost ~$80, and I bought mine at Amazon - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B001UDNXOQ

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I also purchased a pair of tweeter wiring harness adapters, so I didn't have to cut the factory wiring (others have taken apart the stock speakers to make an adapter plug of sorts, or kind of "jumpered" the male portion of the 4 wire factory plug). I got the adapters from Taco Tunes - To limit lower frequency sounds from being played by these speakers, and prevent "clipping" at higher volumes, I also bought a pair of 133 microfarad capacitors (aka "bass blockers"), to cut sounds below 300 Hz - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B017AJ5ECW

    [​IMG]

    The construction differences between the OEM and JL Audio speakers are notable:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Removal of the stock speakers is easy. I started by using a plastic trim tool (part of a set like the ones at https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00ZRJCYQ2), and gently prying from the center/rear-most portion of the speaker grills to "pop" the two clips that hold them in.

    [​IMG]

    From there, a small ratchet, extension, and 10mm socket was used to remove the two hex head screws (with Phillips patterns in the top, as highlighted in red in the image below). After these screws have been removed, the speaker mount and speaker can be lifted out as an assembly. Push the tab on one side of speaker plug/harness to release it from the blue "cap" of the stock speaker, and disconnect the speaker assembly (the second image below is one where the factory mount is still in place, but I suggest removing the speaker and bracket as an assemblly, vis the Phillips head screws)

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The Taco Tunes adapter harnesses make wiring a pretty simple affair. Because of the way that the door speakers are wired with the dash speakers, there are four wires in the factory dash speaker harness/plug. To mimic the same using the Taco Tunes adapter harnesses, make four wires into two -- red and white wires go together for the positive side, and black and white/black go together for the negative side. I cut the long wires of the Taco Tunes adapter harnesses down to about six inches, to reduce bulk when installed under the dash.

    The capacitor is connected inline, on the positive side wire. Joints were soldered and finished with heat shrink tubing.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Next, I fabricated some mounting tabs out of 1" wide x 1/8" thick aluminum bar stock, which can be purchased at most hardware or home improvement stores. These didn't have to have as complex of a shape as I made them, and a simple rectangle would have worked, but mine are shaped like they are due to earlier plans changing a bit, and not wanting to re-make the brackets.

    Rectangular tabs would be 1.75" long and .75" wide. Two holes are drilled in the tab, 1 5/16" apart. The smaller one at the top (which the Phillips head screw will go into) was drilled using a 5/32" bit, and the larger one was drilled with a 3/16" bit.

    The hardware used to attach the tabs to the speakers is 8-32 button head machine screws that are 3/4" long, with matching nuts and washers. I put one washer under the screw head, two washers between the aluminum tab and speaker (for spacing), and one washer under the aluminum tab.

    [​IMG]

    The Phillips head screw can be used to make threads in the smaller/top hole. It takes a little force to start the screw in the hole, but do this, tighten until snug, and then remove the screw. It is much easier to do this outside of the vehicle, than inside when mounting the tab/speakers in the dash.

    [​IMG]

    This photo depicts what the tab looks like when mounted on the speaker. The Phillips screw was removed prior to putting the speaker in the dash. I put blue thread locker (aka Loctite) on the button head hardware, and tightened it fairly well, but just loose enough so that I could move/align the tab with the speaker in the dash hole.

    [​IMG]

    When installing the speakers in the dash, the side of the speaker without the "tab" attached will be fastened using the Phillips head screw and existing "spring nut" that is already installed on the dash plastic. On the opposite side, you'll need to remove the "spring nut" by simply sliding it off the dash plastic (don't drop it into the dash hole, or it may be hard to retrieve. The photo below shows one of the spring nuts after it has been removed.

    [​IMG]

    After plugging the factory speaker wiring harness to the speaker, and tucking in the wires, the speaker can be carefully dropped into the dash hole. On the driver's side, put the speaker "ear" on top of the spring nut that is on the left, and loosely fasten it with one of the Phillips head screws. The fabricated "tab" on the other side of the speaker goes under the dash plastic where the spring nut previously was. Insert the Phillips screw through the top of the dash, and tighten it into the tab below, as depicted in the images below. Don't overtighten the Phillips screws on either side of the speaker, and it is a good idea to put some thread locker on them.

    The installation of the passenger side speaker is similar, but it is a tighter fit due to the ductwork for the defroster vent below the speaker hole. It took some wiggling and pushing down to get the speaker into position, and clearing the sheet metal closest to the windshield.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    The OEM speaker grills have a ring on the bottom side that meets up with foam that is on top of the factory dash speakers. I used an angle grinder and sanding disc to carefully sand away/remove both rings, so that the back of the grills was essentially flat, and no speaker interference would occur.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Snap the speaker grills back into place, and the installation is done.

    Now crank up some tunes, and enjoy the much improved sounds, as well as the satisfaction that you did it yourself!!
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2018
    tngo23, scottalot, Backslider and 5 others like this.
  2. Oct 24, 2018 at 10:52 AM
    #2
    tuc4r

    tuc4r New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2018
    Member:
    #5922
    Messages:
    85
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Todd
    Tucson, AZ
    Vehicle:
    2018 T4R TRD ORP
    2018 4Runner ORP W/KDSS - ADS coil overs, ADS remote resi rear shocks, Total Chaos UCA's, Icon 2' rear springs, Nitto Ridge Grapplers, FN FX PRO wheels, AVID rock sliders, RCI Aluminum front skid, Bussman Fuse/Relay module, Canvas backs, Accessorides remote start, Rago Mole Panels, HID low beams, LED high beams, Morimoto XB fogs, Ceramic window tint, Ecotechne roof rack,
    Great write up, I need to get going on my upgrade.
     
    57HotrodVW [OP] likes this.
  3. Oct 24, 2018 at 10:58 AM
    #3
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    Dammmm can you install something on my ride..

    I mentioned a topic on sound system, now you're ideas look great like some of the other guy's that have done a system
     
    jgcaps and 57HotrodVW [OP] like this.
  4. Oct 24, 2018 at 10:59 AM
    #4
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    I should take an electrical class, it probably will save me the work
     
  5. Oct 24, 2018 at 2:17 PM
    #5
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    Did the same buy used JBL GTO series 3.5" coax speakers. The Subi tweeter upgrade is a total waste of money, still just a tweeter. This is absolutely the way to go. I removed and reused the OEM tweeter plugs, bypassed the OEM capacitor, soldered it all together and good to go. Still plug and play, no cutting of the OEM wiring, saves the 30 bucks or so on the tacotunes adaptor harness.

    Dash 1.jpg
    Adaptor 3.jpg
    Dash 2.jpg
     
    jgcaps likes this.
  6. Oct 25, 2018 at 2:19 PM
    #6
    Trail2016

    Trail2016 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2017
    Member:
    #3346
    Messages:
    19
    Vehicle:
    2016 Trail
    anybody in San Diego, CA know a place to get this done? or is there a better upgrade option to get better sound without taking away any storage area? With 2 young babies, no time for a DIY project. Thanks in advance for any recommendations.
     
    Strandskov likes this.
  7. Oct 25, 2018 at 2:40 PM
    #7
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    I asked that as well before but in THe LA area.. Guys here gave me great tips doing it myself but I rather leave electrical to the professionals..
    If you find someone good in San Diego with a great price let me know...
     
  8. Oct 25, 2018 at 3:22 PM
    #8
    tuc4r

    tuc4r New Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2018
    Member:
    #5922
    Messages:
    85
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Todd
    Tucson, AZ
    Vehicle:
    2018 T4R TRD ORP
    2018 4Runner ORP W/KDSS - ADS coil overs, ADS remote resi rear shocks, Total Chaos UCA's, Icon 2' rear springs, Nitto Ridge Grapplers, FN FX PRO wheels, AVID rock sliders, RCI Aluminum front skid, Bussman Fuse/Relay module, Canvas backs, Accessorides remote start, Rago Mole Panels, HID low beams, LED high beams, Morimoto XB fogs, Ceramic window tint, Ecotechne roof rack,
    Wish you were in AZ, I'd help you in a second.
     
    Strandskov likes this.
  9. Nov 21, 2018 at 9:23 PM
    #9
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    Jen
    Try diy..it's easier then you think,follow the instructions per the thread above. The only time consuming part is removing the old connector from stock tweeter, soldering the cap to block bass from midbass. I will probably do mine in 2 weeks.
     
    Strandskov likes this.
  10. Nov 21, 2018 at 9:44 PM
    #10
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    You really think I can do it Tony. I'm really good with directions..
     
    jgcaps and 2016 4Runner SR5 like this.
  11. Nov 21, 2018 at 9:45 PM
    #11
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    Thanks
     
  12. Nov 21, 2018 at 10:09 PM
    #12
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    YES
    If you want I can walk you thru after I do mine.....I will ping u after I am done or if you decide to do it before, let me know...we can chat or text
     
    Strandskov likes this.
  13. Nov 21, 2018 at 11:13 PM
    #13
    Strandskov

    Strandskov Take the Road Less Traveled

    Joined:
    Sep 25, 2018
    Member:
    #7288
    Messages:
    783
    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jennifer
    So Cal
    Vehicle:
    2015 Toyota 4Runner SR5
    Imma get some confidence then
     
  14. Nov 22, 2018 at 2:55 PM
    #14
    robfl

    robfl New Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2018
    Member:
    #5572
    Messages:
    39
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Rob
    Vehicle:
    T4RORP
    Strandskov likes this.
  15. Nov 22, 2018 at 9:42 PM
    #15
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    Doubt you'd notice the difference between the 2 being such a small speaker. JL speakers are an easier install since the JBL speakers have a tall plastic lip around the edge that has to be trimmed in order to clear the grill. JBL speakers will last longer being a rubber surround rather than the foam surround on the JL speakers which will deteriorate quickly being directly in the sunlight.
     
    Strandskov likes this.
  16. Nov 24, 2018 at 9:31 AM
    #16
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    Just ordered JBL 3.5" speaker suggested by Chris above.....I will try to keep factory harness by prying it out.....Will update once speaker arrives and installation is complete......
     
    Strandskov and 2016 4Runner SR5 like this.
  17. Nov 24, 2018 at 12:03 PM
    #17
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    If you need assistance just let me know!
     
    Strandskov and tngo23 like this.
  18. Nov 25, 2018 at 1:14 PM
    #18
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    5A9EB472-28B7-4347-8C4C-C854D0FAA707.jpg
    5E00DCFA-5A9E-464D-8514-C097D238803B.jpg
    2103071C-C186-446C-A847-A33FC1911357.jpg
    31B8BC5A-91C5-409B-81DD-FD214AA0CCFB.jpg
    04559648-DCC1-440F-B99A-B7547D2229B8.jpg

    Speakers arrived yesterday and I decided to stay up to do it......JBL GTO 329 are not bad.....Only hang up was the passenger side's tight fit.....There are a couple ways to mount the speaker on my install, cut the stock mounting adapter or use speaker brace some use to secure a sub box. The plastic speaker grill will need a dremel job to accommodate the height of the JBL's.
    Sound is definitely an upgrade, now I want to add all new Door speakers and 4 channel Amp.
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
    2016 4Runner SR5 likes this.
  19. Nov 25, 2018 at 2:49 PM
    #19
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    Shave down the plastic ring around the edge of the JBL speakers, they will fit much better. I added the JBL GTO 6x9s to the front doors which was also a big improvement. For me this is all temporary so I haven't bothered to amp them. Ultimately I will have a 5 channel, 6 channel, active system but I needed something to hold me over.
     
    tngo23 likes this.
  20. Nov 25, 2018 at 2:51 PM
    #20
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    Chris,
    Thx for the tip of reusing the stock speaker harness....Saves time, $, and keeping it stock!
     
    2016 4Runner SR5 likes this.
  21. Nov 25, 2018 at 2:54 PM
    #21
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    I thought about what you brought up but wanted to trim the cover ring first to see if it will fit....Snug but fits.....
     
  22. Nov 25, 2018 at 2:54 PM
    #22
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    You're welcome. You do have the polarity wrong though. Cap goes on the positive side of the speaker which it looks like you've got right. Your positive wire is soldered tot he negative terminal on the stock plug though. Positive side is where the OEM cap is. Also make sure you bypass that OEM cap otherwise all you'll get is very high frequencies out of your new speakers. Look at this picture for reference.

    Adaptor 3.jpg
     
  23. Nov 25, 2018 at 3:28 PM
    #23
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    Hmmmmm, on the stock harness, I could not tell where positive or negative is so solder positive on white stock wire, negative on black side......Am I reverse on that?
     
  24. Nov 25, 2018 at 3:31 PM
    #24
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    Yes. If you look at mine, the white/black wire is negative, solid white is positive. Also desolder the stock capacitor and remove the terminal to take that out of the equation.
     
  25. Nov 25, 2018 at 3:40 PM
    #25
    tngo23

    tngo23 New Member

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2016
    Member:
    #3141
    Messages:
    138
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Tony
    Vehicle:
    OG White
    Custom JL Subwoofer, TRD Wheels, Custom front grill/Led's, Blacked out emblems
    I can just disconnect stock cap or pull it out and plug will still work right?
     
  26. Nov 25, 2018 at 3:42 PM
    #26
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    Yep I left mine there just because I didn't feel like pulling it off but it is disconnected. If yours is still connected, your new dash speakers are getting the same high frequencies your stock tweeters did. Remove that cap, reverse the polarity so it's correct, take a listen. You like it now, just wait till you hear it when wired correctly. You can also run much thinner wire if that wire is getting in your way. Looks like 12 gauge, definitely overkill but won't hurt anything if that's all you have around.
     
  27. Mar 16, 2019 at 1:21 PM
    #27
    JWG

    JWG New Member

    Joined:
    Saturday
    Member:
    #9194
    Messages:
    7
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    John
    Vehicle:
    2015 White 4Runner SR5 Preminum
    None
    I just purchaced the JBL GTO speakers and noticed they come with 150 microfarad capacitors. I notice you used 133 microfarad capacitorssetup with the JL speakers. Is there an enough of a difference to use one over the other?
     
  28. Mar 16, 2019 at 6:35 PM
    #28
    57HotrodVW

    57HotrodVW [OP] New Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2018
    Member:
    #6664
    Messages:
    22
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Eric
    Texas
    Vehicle:
    '18 Cavalry Blue TRD Pro
    There's a formula you can use to determine what frequencies get blocked based on the caps and impedence. If the JBLs came with 150 microfarad caps, you should be fine and it'll sound great.
     
  29. Mar 17, 2019 at 5:05 AM
    #29
    2016 4Runner SR5

    2016 4Runner SR5 New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2017
    Member:
    #3447
    Messages:
    439
    Gender:
    Male
    First Name:
    Chris
    Maryland
    Vehicle:
    2016 4Runner SR5, tech package, MGM
    Bought it 1/29/17 TRD Pro suspension with spacer, 285/70/17 Falken AT3W, FX Pro wheels
    The JBL speakers are 3 ohms, the JL speakers are 4 ohms. This changes how the capacitor works. Use what came with them, JBL knows what they're doing.
     
  30. Mar 17, 2019 at 10:26 AM
    #30
    akkording

    akkording New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2018
    Member:
    #7309
    Messages:
    38
    Gender:
    Male
    HTX
    Vehicle:
    2012 blizzard pearl sr5 4x4, 02&03 Tacoma sr5 dcsb v6
    Yeah my JBL club 3020 came with 270 uf, caps, I didn't notice them until I flipped the foam packaging to throw the box away when I was done soldering 14uf to the speakers. I'm going to run the 14uf for now and maybe test one 270uf and adjust left and right balance to see if I notice a difference
     

Products Discussed in

To Top