The Jeff Anderson Head Rest Fix
(And various other sundry repairs)
I had been trying to get time to have Jeff Anderson do the HR speaker fix since I heard about it, but the concept of having no tunes for a week or more was a little bit more than I could handle. I figured I would wait till the beginning of a really good, couple of week snow front and send it down to him.
The weather gods were much more interested in seeing how much top down I could get in, and winter came and went with the radio still intact.
However, while doing yet another radio in and out with the CD changer , I had set the radio on the garage floor. My neighbor came over to hang out, and as I got out of the car to greet him, I kicked the radio over. When I reinstalled it, the LED display was gone. Radio worked fine, did what it was supposed to do, just no display. And to an anal retentive like me, this was completely unacceptable. Thought about just replacing the whole thing with an aftermarket unit, and solving the vexing problem of the CD changer at the same time, but I really wanted the look and theft resistance of the stock radio.
I e-mailed Jeff, and asked if in addition to the famed HR repair, would he also be able to fix the display. While waiting for a reply from him, I hit the classifieds at Miata.net and ebay. Struck out on Miata.net. Found one auction on ebay ending in a couple of hours. I placed the high bid and got the unit from ebay.
At the same time, after a couple of e-mails, Jeff figured that he could probably fix mine, but thought it might be better to leave my original unit in the car, and just do the headrest repair on the ebay unit. That seemed like the best direction to me, and that was the plan till the ebay radio showed in the mail.
The monkey that ripped the ebay radio from the Miata it formerly resided in had ripped the antenna lead from the circuit board, and half the lights on the display were out. I decided that the best move now was to swap out the radios, soldering in a new antenna lead, and have Jeff repair my old unit, do the HR repair, and I would to the swap one more time.
So we did.
Jeff then informed me that based on the wiring diagram I sent him that my headrest speakers were cross wired and out of phase. This is not uncommon, but I had deluded myself into thinking that my car was wired properly. I followed his instructions for rewiring, and reinstalled my original unit.
The sound, which was pretty impressive before, entered another dimension entirely. Others have mentioned that post Jeff's HR mod that the rear speakers actually are too loud and the balance needs to be set with a definite front speaker bias. I don't feel that that is valid on my setup anyway. The HR speakers now fill in and they actually have some bass. I recommend Jeff's service wholeheartedly. He also buffed out a scratch which was on the display. The radio now looks like brand new, and sounds better than new.
You can reach Jeff here ---> Jeff Anderson