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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I ordered my 2014 Q4 with the B&W audio system, and thought I'd post a few comments about it.

For background, I've owned the following cars:
Porsche Cayenne with Burmester system
Porsche 911 with Burmester system
Mercedes Benz C63 with Harman Kardon system

During my early driving years, I used to replace the factory audio systems with aftermarket components, which usually sounded far better. As cars have grown more complex electronically, I've been ordering my cars with the best audio systems provided by each manufacturer instead. I love my music, and do most of my listening these days while driving. Premium factory systems offer seamless integration (backed by manufacturer's warranty), while sounding and costing comparatively well to aftermarket options. Also, I don't think it's logical to compare sound systems across different manufacturers, other than to make academic comparisons. The car as a whole dictates which car you buy; once you decide which car you want, you spend on the audio system according to your musical needs and budget.

With that out of the way, here are my thoughts on the B&W system in the Ghibli. Overall, the system sounds excellent. In simple terms, it sounds better than the (MB) Harman Kardon (which lacks bass), and just a notch below the (Porsche) Burmesters. Bass is more than adequate (I prefer tight balanced bass), midrange and highs are solid. I've adjusted the equalizer with a slight boost in bass and treble, keeping the midrange flat or -1.

To date, I don't have any rattles coming from the components, but I do have one gripe. While the system offers 2 surround modes in addition to straight stereo, THERE DOESN'T SEEM TO BE ANY WAY OF SAVING THE PREFERRED SURROUND MODE. Each time the system is powered up, it defaults to Stereo mode. I hope Maserati offers a software update in the near future to fix this.

One side note regarding the Navigation system. Specifically, the soft keys controlling the turn-by-turn guidance volume have been omitted. Doing a quick search online reveals that this adjustment is offered on other Uconnect systems; Maserati's decision to omit it from their MTC seems odd. I know that you can adjust the volume while the system is giving you directions, but timing the change while you're driving is inconvenient.

I prefer a hardwired connection instead of Bluetooth for my audio source. Not only does it provide noticeably better sound, but allows you to see the pertinent info on the car's display and use the car controls to navigate your songs and playlists. As such, I find the cubby space containing the USB input to be ridiculously small. A current iPhone or iPod touch will not fit in it with the cable attached; I don't expect anyone with one of the fashionably larger Android phones to fare better. Why didn't Maserati simply put the USB input in the cavernous center storage console (just behind the tiny one), or in the glovebox? I've worked around this issue by using an old (square) iPod Nano, but I can't for the life of me explain why Maserati designed the USB location this way.

One more thing. I can appreciate the symmetry of putting the 2 control knobs on either side of the screen. But I think it would be easier for the driver to control both knobs had they been located to the left of the display, maybe making them a bit larger, and thereby easier to use while on the move. Not only would this configuration make both knobs easier to reach, but it also avoids blocking the screen with your arm while controlling the right knob.

Even with this laundry list of issues, I am pleased with the system. While I can't insist that every buyer opt for it, I strongly encourage them to give it a serious evaluation.
 

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B&W review

Thanks for this review, I have ordered B&W in my Ghibli. On a test drive I discovered the same issue with the iphone5, it wouldn't fit in the space with USB cable attached, only a few millimetres bigger and it would have. Poor design.
But good news that you rate the sound quality compared to other systems. :)
 

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My opinion is the same, the B&W is a quality hifi system, in my audi S4 avant I've got Bang & Olufson , and I must admit the b&o is best car-audio I've ever heard in my life but the b&w comes very close to it. The premium and standard audio systems of maserati are garbage.

Although my experience of the b&w i've tested comes from a quattroporte so I hope it wil be the same in the ghibli (i've ordered few weeks ago).

I also advice it to everyone who loves music in the car, its an expensive option but a pleasure for your ears.
 

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Thanks for positive news!


I am used to a really good sound system at home and in my cars and had struggled with my decision, with regard to sound system on my 2015 order, based in the c***y Premium Sound system provided in the 2014 Q4.


Given Anderson_b76's efforts it seemed I had no option but get the B &W and this actually pushed me towards leasing not buying, as the so called Premium sound system will not be sorted until at least late model 2015s.


DD
 

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QUOTE=Nice Nige;57610]Thanks for this review, I have ordered B&W in my Ghibli. On a test drive I discovered the same issue with the iphone5, it wouldn't fit in the space with USB cable attached, only a few millimetres bigger and it would have. Poor design.
But good news that you rate the sound quality compared to other systems. :)[/QUOTE]

Have you tried to connect the iphone on the USB that is in the back seat armchair?
 

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Problem solved!

I bought an iPod mini. 16 GB has the same total storage as my iPhone.
It fits in the storage box with the cord.
It connects via USB so you get full control with graphic display of song, title, album art.
Your entire song library is permanently connected, continuously charged.
Connect and forget unless you want to add more music...
No issues with connectivity, no dropped or disconnected music and it works great with UConnect. MTC

iPhone stays in my pocket and is connected via Bluetooth push phone and your there. I have had some Bluetooth issues and reported them to Brian Anderson on his list but I have had no issues with the direct iPod connect.

Steve
 

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you realize you can also use an SD card and hold much more. I have 9GB of music on my SD card and it all shows on the display. My gripe is not being able to stream Pandora when you are plugged in. Used RSM's solution to get a battery charger (that fits in the small compartment) and just plug into the battery and stream my Pandora........
 

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you realize you can also use an SD card and hold much more. I have 9GB of music on my SD card and it all shows on the display. My gripe is not being able to stream Pandora when you are plugged in. Used RSM's solution to get a battery charger (that fits in the small compartment) and just plug into the battery and stream my Pandora........

I really hate the location of the SD-slot really annoying!
 

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I have an iPod mini that fits in the small compartment.
But, the sound via Bluetooth from my phone is signifcantly better than any other form of input.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
QUOTE=Nice Nige;57610]Thanks for this review, I have ordered B&W in my Ghibli. On a test drive I discovered the same issue with the iphone5, it wouldn't fit in the space with USB cable attached, only a few millimetres bigger and it would have. Poor design.
But good news that you rate the sound quality compared to other systems. :)
Have you tried to connect the iphone on the USB that is in the back seat armchair?[/QUOTE]

I actually tried that. The port in the rear armrest charges the device, but doesn't seem to be connected to the MTC.
 

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That makes sense as the rear passenger would only need charging. if that socket were hooked up to the MTC would be a conflict with the front socket.
 

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you realize you can also use an SD card and hold much more. I have 9GB of music on my SD card and it all shows on the display. .
Thanks ... I guess I was so excited with everything else about the car I never noticed the SD car slot ... I just ordered a 16GB card to free up the glove box and will use the phone exclusively on Bluetooth.
 

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I ordered my 2014 Q4 with the B&W audio system, and thought I'd post a few comments about it.

For background, I've owned the following cars:
Porsche Cayenne with Burmester system
Porsche 911 with Burmester system
Mercedes Benz C63 with Harman Kardon system

During my early driving years, I used to replace the factory audio systems with aftermarket components, which usually sounded far better. As cars have grown more complex electronically, I've been ordering my cars with the best audio systems provided by each manufacturer instead. I love my music, and do most of my listening these days while driving. Premium factory systems offer seamless integration (backed by manufacturer's warranty), while sounding and costing comparatively well to aftermarket options. Also, I don't think it's logical to compare sound systems across different manufacturers, other than to make academic comparisons. The car as a whole dictates which car you buy; once you decide which car you want, you spend on the audio system according to your musical needs and budget.

With that out of the way, here are my thoughts on the B&W system in the Ghibli. Overall, the system sounds excellent. In simple terms, it sounds better than the (MB) Harman Kardon (which lacks bass), and just a notch below the (Porsche) Burmesters. Bass is more than adequate (I prefer tight balanced bass), midrange and highs are solid. I've adjusted the equalizer with a slight boost in bass and treble, keeping the midrange flat or -1.

To date, I don't have any rattles coming from the components, but I do have one gripe. While the system offers 2 surround modes in addition to straight stereo, THERE DOESN'T SEEM TO BE ANY WAY OF SAVING THE PREFERRED SURROUND MODE. Each time the system is powered up, it defaults to Stereo mode. I hope Maserati offers a software update in the near future to fix this.

One side note regarding the Navigation system. Specifically, the soft keys controlling the turn-by-turn guidance volume have been omitted. Doing a quick search online reveals that this adjustment is offered on other Uconnect systems; Maserati's decision to omit it from their MTC seems odd. I know that you can adjust the volume while the system is giving you directions, but timing the change while you're driving is inconvenient.

I prefer a hardwired connection instead of Bluetooth for my audio source. Not only does it provide noticeably better sound, but allows you to see the pertinent info on the car's display and use the car controls to navigate your songs and playlists. As such, I find the cubby space containing the USB input to be ridiculously small. A current iPhone or iPod touch will not fit in it with the cable attached; I don't expect anyone with one of the fashionably larger Android phones to fare better. Why didn't Maserati simply put the USB input in the cavernous center storage console (just behind the tiny one), or in the glovebox? I've worked around this issue by using an old (square) iPod Nano, but I can't for the life of me explain why Maserati designed the USB location this way.

One more thing. I can appreciate the symmetry of putting the 2 control knobs on either side of the screen. But I think it would be easier for the driver to control both knobs had they been located to the left of the display, maybe making them a bit larger, and thereby easier to use while on the move. Not only would this configuration make both knobs easier to reach, but it also avoids blocking the screen with your arm while controlling the right knob.

Even with this laundry list of issues, I am pleased with the system. While I can't insist that every buyer opt for it, I strongly encourage them to give it a serious evaluation.

Great review Sparrow650. I have the B&W Sound Option as well. Totally agree on your review. I like the sound. It's different than my C63's HK Logic 7 system, although Logic 7 seems to have a more "surround effect". I wonder if STEREO is actually one of the surround modes, than "STEREO". I agree that they should have a firmware update to:
1. Keep the selection of sound mode until changed again.
2. Improvements need to happen on Iphone integration via bluetooth and cord
3. More equalizer adjustment capability. My former 335i BMW could change up to 9 settings.
 

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I really hate the location of the SD-slot really annoying!
Yeah but once you have it in ur done!!
Ow my mistake, I tested the b&w in a quatroporte and there was the sd-slot really bad placed you allmost coudn't remove the sd-card within 1 minute, I see there's lot more space in the Ghibli and there its just fine..

My bad, wrong impression.
 

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you realize you can also use an SD card and hold much more. I have 9GB of music on my SD card and it all shows on the display. My gripe is not being able to stream Pandora when you are plugged in. Used RSM's solution to get a battery charger (that fits in the small compartment) and just plug into the battery and stream my Pandora........
Pandora does work from my iPhone but you just have to keep pressing play on the Pandora until it settles and it will play. I would say about 6-8times. It's annoying but I think there has to be a glitch on the MTC.
 
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