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Has anyone gone this route? My husband was an audiophile in a previous life and would like to put a system in our prius but is a bit nervous about screwing with the electrical system. Equipment added would include- 2 amplifyiers (with an approximate load of 30 amps total), new radio, and speakers. Counting the hours--I pick up our new Prius at 4pm!!!
 

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Plenty of threads on this, especially on PriusChat.

First off, are we talking JBL factory system or NON-JBL? The JBL as a separate amp/computer controlled preamp under the passenger seat, that can't be replaced without replacing the head unit along with it.

If you replace the head unit, you will lose steering wheel and MFD control, unless it is specialized to integrate with Toyota's AVC network.
 

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Some folks have successfully swapped out the stock speakers on both JBL and NON-JBL systems with great success. Others have added bazooka tubes in unique places. In general, you can swap out the Prius head unit with a different one, however I think there is more to loose than gain, both asthetically and in terms of vehicle integration.

My feeling is that your husband should start with speakers before messing with the head unit and amp. The head unit's integration with the MFD and the steering wheel controls is both nicely done and something unique and very Prius-like. I wouldn't mess with that. On top of that the amplifier associated with the JBL system can be a pain to deal with when trying to "improve" the Prius stereo system.

So, my strongest advice is to start with speakers and go from there.
 

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It would sound feasable to add an amp behind the JBL amp (or the head unit if you don't have JBL), but then you amplify the MFD beeps which appear at the speakers at a fixed level, regardless of the audio volume level or even the audio being on. No real way around it, except set your amplifier gain to near 1:1 ratio, which makes it pointless.
 
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