Hello everyone. This is my first post, and I thought showing how I added some extra bass to my ‘15 Soul Red Touring (non-Bose) would help some folks considering an upgrade without breaking their budget.
I originally owned a 06 Mazda 3 GT that I did the same thing to, but at 230K miles, she finally gave out and I found myself in my 6. New car, new forum!
Anywho, what I've installed is a Bazooka BTA850FH. It's a self-amplified tube and I only had to connect 6 wires to make the whole thing work. Yes... 6 wires. You can find it online, and occasionally Woot.com will have it for $99. Amazon has it for around $129. Like I said, not expensive at all.
Before I go any further, many thanks to the members that posted the workshop manual for the 6. I used it extensively to disassemble everything and figure out the wiring. I put this off for a few months after I purchased the car simply because I was cringing at the thought of tearing apart my interior. But based on my experience with my 3, I knew Mazda would make things easily accessible, and they did.
I'm sorry that I don't have pictures of removing the panels and head unit, but I didn't think of documenting this until I had it all apart and everything wired.
Ok, enough chatter, on to the install.
To install this, you'll need to remove:
passenger side decorative trim panel
plastic frame around head unit
passenger side kick plate
front and rear sill step covers
trunk carpet mat that covers the spare tire (HUGE! It goes from the rear of the trunk to the back of the rear seat)
I also recommend getting a dash/trim removal kit. I picked up a 5 piece set at Harbor Freight for 6 bucks.
The harness that Bazooka ships the tube with comes with what's called a "FAST 9999" harness. It has 6 connections:
Remote antenna or acc turn on
This connects by modular plug to the tube's main harness, which is close to 20 feet long. Near to the tube itself, there is a ground connection, and a yellow loop wire that should be removed if you have a remote turn on. I left it connected, and it works fine.
The hardest part of this was determining where the speaker leads were on the head unit, and where I could tap power. Again, thanks to the workshop manual and my multimeter, I found them. Then it's a matter of having some faith and twisting the connector on.
In this shot you can see the rear of the head unit. The speaker leads for the car’s rear channel are on the top row, all together. To make room for the tap connections, I had to trim back the wire loom to expose more of the factory wiring. I didn't want to chance not having enough space to connect them. There was plenty of room behind the head unit for the extra wiring from the Bazooka. Keep in mind, mine is non-Bose, so if you have the Bose setup, your mileage may vary. And PLEASE triple check before you connect!
These were the wires I joined:
Head unit Blue to FAST Gray/Black stripe
Head unit Red to FAST Grey
Head unit Blue/Yellow stripe to FAST White/Black stripe
Head unit Red/White stripe to FAST White
All four are on the upper row of the passenger side connector on the rear of head unit, on the right side, and all in a row. The workshop manual wiring diagram shows their colors also.
For power, I connected the Head unit Red/Black stripe to FAST Red. This is on the BOTTOM row of the same connector as the speakers. It's a little hard to see in this shot, but it's there. That's it for the head unit. Your connections are made.
Here you can see the wires that were not used (including the RCA connections).
More of the rear with connections made. Note the unused grey slot. Not sure what it was for, but I searched and searched almost frantically when I put everything back together thinking I'd missed something. I didn't.
Now it's just a matter of routing the harness to the rear compartment.
I took it behind the glove box...
Down the passenger side kick panel...
Under the front side sill step cover...
And the rear side sill step cover (no I didn't remove the pillar cover between the two doors, it slid under it just fine)...
To the rear of the car. This is where I connected the ground for the tube. With the rear mat/tire cover removed you'll find a nice big plate mounted to the body for the rear seat that worked great for the ground. I removed one bolt, connected it, and put it back. Done!
This brought me to the biggest problem for the whole thing. How to mount/secure it without drilling metal. My son had an idea that worked great. I had two plastic plates that were larger than the tube’s strap base, so I lined the plates up under them, and drilled to match the strap's base.
Next I marked the placement location with Sharpie, and punched four holes through the mat. With that done, I used four large zip ties (yes, you read that right... ZIP ties!) and threaded them through....
Trim the excess off and TA-DA! They hold much tighter than you expect, and I haven't experienced any movement at all. The best part is that if I have to remove it, there are no visible damage/marks except for a few barely noticeable holes in the mat.
This is a view of the final install from the trunk...
and from the passenger compartment (notice the yellow wire on the harness because I didn’t use remote turn-on at the head unit)
Well there you have it. Let me know what you think!!