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After replacing my factory head unit last fall with an Alpine CDE-123 I was still disappointed with the sound that I was getting. So I decided to start by replacing my factory Bose amp with a Sony XM-4S. I went with this model because it's small physical size, 4 channels and the controls. It has separate front and rear gain controls, rear bass boost, front high pass frequency and rear low pass frequency (I played around with frequency cross overs but in the end left them off). I was able to get one off of ebay for around $60. It was used and had a few scratches but who is ever going to see it? I used a Kicker 09-DPK8 amp mounting kit (also ebay).

Prior to replacing the Bose amp I could turn the volume up to 20 on my Alpine before the speakers would begin to distort. With the top down it was never even close to loud enough at highway speeds and there really wasn't any bass. With my new setup I can't even get close to 20. I like listening to all kinds of music including metal and it gets too loud to listen to comfortably before distorting. I'm finding that around 10 is a perfect volume.

Another plus is that the rear speakers can be controlled by the headunit and that you can feel the back speakers pounding a little through the seat. Now this doesn't replace having a true sub sitting behind you but at least you can feel the music.

For those people having problems with their after market head unit making that popping sound when changing songs or stations this took care of it.

I used this the following thread from benzworld as a reference. 2000 SLK 230 Limited Edition Car Audio Install - Benzworld.org - Mercedes-Benz Discussion Forum My routed my power just as he described. Everything looked the same for my install except that because my 230 is a 5 speed manual I don't have the auto transmission control box (at least that's what I think it is). In the middle of the mounting plate. If you are looking at using this same sub I would take the plate out and measure first!!

I have done many car audio installs and the 230 is by far one of the easiest to work on.
 
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