Quoted from nosro:
In case anyone needs a "for dummies" (no disrespect intended) version, here's a wiring diagram to convert from parallel to series so that you can use any standard car audio 4 ohm (or lower) speaker.
In this version, I recommend crimp-on connectors. Solder is certainly the best way to go, but I am so lazy that I would rather crimp some stuff than pull out the soldering iron. Crimping on some connectors certainly makes it more reversible and crimps have never let me down with speaker upgrades in a home environment. For any crimp newbies, you will want red colored ones as these are the best for the very thin gauge wires in MMr. If you choose to crimp, please get a proper ratcheting tool like the one shown in the diagram or one of these on Amazon: amazon.com link »
amazon.com link »
You can even experiment with plugging the speakers into the gray-orange wire instead of the gray-red wire. If you choose the gray-orange wire, you will get some amount of bass removal (filtering) whereas the gray-red wire has no bass filtering. You might want some bass filtering if you feel you have too much bass or if you have a backbox rattle that you want to tame.
If any of this seems too complex, there's no shame in that. Just buy the excellent MMr speaker upgrade kit from Pinball Pro and play more pinball with the time you saved.
I figured I would put up my experience with upgrading my MMR speakers and provide thoughts\feedback and have a question or two for the audio\electrical experts to just make sure I did it right as one set of instructions have something specific about keeping the BLACK\GRAY wires connected while the above post doesn’t reference this and that is the one I followed. Before I begin, I just like to thank everyone for all the feedback and helpful information as I am far from an expert at electrical work but slowly but surely getting better.
Got my MMR a week ago and after reading this thread beforehand, I was skeptical if this would be THAT MUCH better as well as I was concerned with re-wiring everything. I also am very interested in the XL Display that might eventually come out and that comes with new speakers (whether they are upgraded or not, no one knows or has mentioned this). However I would ass\u\me that if it does come out, that they would just have you unplug the current Molex that goes to the board so modifying the setup after this connection, shouldn’t be an issue, so I was sold on trying this out.
As mentioned, I followed the amazing instructions above. I bought the crimping tool and a kit that had all the crimps connectors needed and purchased a set of 5.25 4 ohm Kickers, not the same as the ones referenced so far but perhaps the newer model? I first started with cutting the three wires from the Molex (RED\GRAY, ORG\GRAY & BLACK\GRAY) BEFORE the connector, so that the wire coming from the board still has the Molex connector. I then put female bullet connectors on each of them. I then un-soldered the wires from the speaker terminals and cut all the zip ties. I had to loosen the bottom two screws from the DMD display in order to get these wires out to be able to cut the zip ties. I then took out all the extra wiring that were attached to the speaker terminals and left the green ground cord of course. Next I used some of this existing wire that I just removed to make the connections from the new speakers back to the female connectors. So I took two wires and crimped on male bullet connectors on one end and spade connectors on the other to connect to the speakers. These wires would connect the RED\GRAY wire (female bullet) to the Left Speaker + (spade connector) and the other wire would connect the GRAY\BLANK wire (female bullet) to the Right Speaker - (spade connector). All that was left was to use another existing removed wire and crimp on two spade connectors and connect the Left Speak - to the Right Speaker +. That was it, WOW that wasn’t too hard.
So I finished cleaning things up (re-zip tying the wires to the existing green ground wires, I did not do anything to the green wires) put the zip tied wires back underneath the DMD on the bottom and secured the DMD back. I secured the speakers in place and I was ready to test.
WOW, I definitely could notice a difference and you have to hear it, to really appreciate and notice it. The voices are a lot clearer and cleaner and more distinct. I can confirm that you can now hear sounds a lot clearer (drawbridge chain when it lowers, the slash from when the dragon’s head gets cut off, etc.). It clears everything up but as others have said, there isn’t much thump\bass, even though before it wasn’t overwhelming and perhaps the muddy sounds make it seem like there was more bass than there really was. I originally had my volume at 8 or so and had to raise it to around 14 to be at about the same level as before. The only other random thing is sometimes the King’s hechmen’s call outs are lower but there is no rhyme or reason to it. One time the Duke of Bourban was low but the next time he came up it was at the same level as the other call outs, again no set pattern when this happens.
So the question I have is in reference to all the posts where everyone states they kept the two BLACK\GRAY wires connected that were originally connected to the Left Speaker, see post below:
Quoted from yancy:
the 2 spare GRA-BLK wires (originally connected to L- ) remain disconnected.
I should clarify, current is still flowing through these wires back to the board, they're just not connected to the left speaker anymore.
I didn’t do any of this and mine appears to be working as it should or did I do something wrong and am I missing out on anything? It seems those that didn’t do this and had issues, no sound was present, so I ass\u\me that the way I did it was different from theirs and since mine works, it was installed right? Thanks for any help on this.
My next step was to replace the cabinet speaker. I didn’t want to have to remove that mounting board that seems to be required if you go to an 8” or larger speaker, so I just went with an inexpensive Pyle 6.5 speaker that was 4 ohms (which is ok since the cabinet speaker, or at least mine, had 4 ohms on it). I wasn’t looking for a huge improvement, just more consistency that stock. It was an easy swap since it was the same size as the stock and no issues on troll clearance. I used the same crimping kit and just cut the existing wires connected to the stock speaker and crimped on spade connectors and easily enough just un-mounted the stock speaker and put the new one in it’s place and Voila. The difference is ever so slight, not as dramatic and noticeable as the back box speakers but for $16, I figured why not.
The last modification I did was after I had everything installed. I noticed I could slightly see some of the silver logo on the back box speakers, through the black grills. While it wasn’t really bad, I figured it was Sharpie to the rescue. I sharpied the logos as well as the silver ring around the tweeter (the logo on the actual speakers took a couple of coats, I guess due to material) and now I can’t see anything and it looks more stock now.
Anyway, that was my adventure and I know this was an extremely long post and sorry to resurrect and old thread, but as you can tell I am kind of OCD and figured this might help anyone else who might be on the fence about this like I was. All total, I spent $111.25 which I had leftover gift cards from Christmas and my birthday so really no cost to me. Below are all the items I bought and used and they are not affiliate links in case you are wondering, the soldering iron I already had, and was a portable butane Harbor Freight one ($19) that I use when I can’t sit down and use my Hakko. I probably could have saved a little by just buying 8 ohm replacement speakers (Fidelity or PinballPro) but there have been times where having a crimping set would have helped me out (I like to fix\mod other things like consoles and other electronics), so that’s another reason I figured I would try this.
Hope this helps and take care everyone:
$21.38 - Crimp Tool : amazon.com link »
$18.99 - Crimp Connector Kit: amazon.com link »
$54.43 - 5.25 Kicker 43DCS504 D-Series Speakers: amazon.com link »
$16.45 - 6.5 Pyle Mid Bass Woofer: amazon.com link »