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2016 WRX LTD with HK Premium Audio HU Replacement Issues

3198 Views 11 Replies 3 Participants Last post by  GoogleMaster
Hi everyone - first time poster......

I have trawled through the various threads and can't find a satisfactory answer for the following, so apologies if it is out there, and please just direct me to it!

I picked up a 2016 WRX LTD with HK Premium sound in May, and have had nothing but headaches with a number of different issues on the HU.
Having discussed at length over 6 months with dealer and Subaru USA, I am fitting a Pioneer AVIC-8200NEX HU to replace the standard Fujitsu unit.

Took the vehicle to Car Toys, who said they could do this, and after having it for a 14 hour day, they came up with an insurmountable hurdle - Apparently the HK Amplifier does all kinds of clever things including volume control, and splitting the audio to the various channels, but they could not work out how to trigger the amp ON, and didn't even get as far as volume and EQ control. They tell me the info to the amp is sent by a digital bus (I am assuming CAN bus) and they cannot replicate this to activate and control the amp.

Their solution is to replace the Amp and all the speakers, at an additional cost of around $2K.

My question is: has anyone successfully integrated a new HU into the HK Premium system, while retaining the existing Amp and speakers?

Are there any after market wiring harnesses available for this, and any wiring diagrams for the Premium system out there?

If I have to live any longer with the existing HU, I may well end up in an asylum!!

Thanks for any help you can provide!!
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Get the mini Alpine amp and be done with it. That and new speakers will work wonders to your system

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New speakers or the existing ones?
Will the Alpine amp deal with all the existing channels?
If you use that HU. You will use RCA out to the alpine amp

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Understood...... which Alpine amplifier?
Again, possible, or good enough to use the existing speaker array in the Premium system?
The Alpine has enough outputs to drive all of them?
Depends on how you wire it. I wired my front and used existing wires for rear doors.

Its a 4 channel amp. Its not gonna rattle any windows but def gives more clarity and volume than stock

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I'm running that amp with DDX-9903s, maestro , alpine mini amp and coax rear door and component front doors. Works fantastic

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Thanks for the link........
So no sub output?
The Premium system has nine (I think) speakers, but I assume the two on the front dash are tweeters only..... and could therefore be paralleled off the front doors?

Basically, I will give this back to Car Toys to do, but just want a clear way forward that will give me a reasonable system.

Gutted that I have to forsake the HK amp though..... which genius came up with a system that can't be integrated into an after market HU?!
Big reason why I didn't go for HK system since I knew after that test drive that the starlink was gonna get trashed after the first week

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Sub output is usually found on the HU which you then drive to the sub amp. I don't think I've seen any typical class AB amps over 4 channels. For subs I'd use a Class D amp

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IT's not even the Starlink so much, although the idiocy in the interface for Pandora etc blows my mind, let alone the system's desire to play pandora from my phone when I connect to usb, even when Pandora isn't open on said phone.......
Not happy with the side buttons - I like positive feedback when I push something.
And then there are the voice control and mic clarity issues with phone and nav that I am not allowed to discuss, following the settlement with Subaru.......

Appreciate the advice.....
I ran into the same struggles. The HK system utilizes DSP technology where a digital audio signal is sent to the HK amp for processing. Currently, the only way to swap the deck out is to bypass the HK amp as well.

Technology exists today to retain the factory deck and use aftermarket DSP's to send signal to an aftermarket amp, however a viable solution for using an aftermarket deck with a DSP amp doesn't
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