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Keep the 17 or get the 18

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Yeah, a salesman should not be taking deposits from people without a signed deal - that just leads to hard feelings all the way around.

Bright side, the car was the wrong color and didn't have the heated wheel and owning an air suspension car out of warranty is $$$$ to fix so maybe keep looking for something that checks all the boxes - these cars are pretty plentiful so not hard to track down.
Once you have signed a contract deposits don't matter anymore. With few exceptions you are on the hook to buy the car. Only thing you would be doing at that point is putting a down payment on it. Thats not a deposit.

I sell cars and I don't take deposits when people offer them. I tell people they are pointless, sign a deal and the car is yours. No? then it'll be there till they or someone else buys it.

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Discussion Starter #62
Once you have signed a contract deposits don't matter anymore. With few exceptions you are on the hook to buy the car. Only thing you would be doing at that point is putting a down payment on it. Thats not a deposit.

I sell cars and I don't take deposits when people offer them. I tell people they are pointless, sign a deal and the car is yours. No? then it'll be there till they or someone else buys it.

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You're a car salesman? With your winning personality?馃き
 

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Back to my observation, you obviously wanted that heated steering wheel...make sure the next one has it. ;)
After buying my first Volvo in October I continued searching second guessing myself multiple times, it's never ending.

Would you have went with the votes if the "Keep the 2017" came out ahead? think you are set on B&W and air...and a heated wheel
 

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Discussion Starter #64 (Edited)
Back to my observation, you obviously wanted that heated steering wheel...make sure the next one has it. ;)
After buying my first Volvo in October I continued searching second guessing myself multiple times, it's never ending.

Would you have went with the votes if the "Keep the 2017" came out ahead? think you are set on B&W and air...and a heated wheel
You're spot on man. I test drove a XC90 with air and B&W after I bought mine(huge mistake) and I knew I wanted both.

Be that as it may the deal I worked out with the GM was really good especially with me only losing 1.5k on my trade in. I wasn't gonna back out if they came back to me quoting me 1k for the heated steering wheel..which would've never happened because the GM was willing to pay for install.

But you're totally correct. I want what I want.

Side note: my wife drove it for the first time today and commented how much smoother this car is vs our L405 Range (air suspension). Go figure.
 

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You're spot on man. I test drove a XC90 with air and B&W after I bought mine(huge mistake) and I knew I wanted both.

Be that as it may the deal I worked out with the GM was really good especially with me only losing 1.5k on my trade in. I wasn't gonna back out if they came back to me quoting me 1k for the heated steering wheel..which would've never happened because the GM was willing to pay for install.

But you're totally correct. I want what I want.

Side note: my wife drove it for the first time today and commented how much smoother this car is vs our L405 Range. Go figure.
New 2021 XC90 owner here. Just bought an inscription with premium Harman Kardon, +integrated booster. It was this vs another inscription with B&W and luxury package, no integrated booster. Wife really wanted an integrated booster so we compromised.

I am a "mid-tier" audiophile. Own Focal speakers, Anthem integrated receivers, high end headphones and DACs. My phone is connected directly to the car, sound stage set to neutral, centered to driver. I test drove the B&W, I thought it was a tad bit better. But extremely happy with our choice, and wife is happy.

Bottom line- if you're not an audiophile and going to connect to BT most of the time, listening to streamed audio or 320 kbps mp3, it is not going to matter.
 

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Bottom line- if you're not an audiophile and going to connect to BT most of the time, listening to streamed audio or 320 kbps mp3, it is not going to matter.
This really isn't a fair assessment of the B&W system. I have the B&W and my mom has the HK, and I frequently drive them back to back and have taken many long drives with both. While the B&W system's true performance requires a higher quality source than streaming or BT music, even when connected to those poorer sources the the B&W system offers far superior sound. The front door panel woofers offer substantially more powerful base with the B&W, and the sounds staging is miles apart. I suspect many people never really spend time with the graphic equalizer, but the B&W comes alive when you tailor it's performance to your music type. The result is far superior sound than the HK, even if you just listen to FM radio. The higher the volume, the more difference the B&W system makes. When people comment the two systems are not really that far apart in quality it's apparent they are either not well versed in critiquing speaker performance or listen to very "vanilla" tracks and low volumes. The HK is very, very good. It's better than many optional "upgraded" systems from other brands and very reasonably priced. But the clarity, crispness and staging of the B&W system is a large step up from the HK. There is just no way around it...they don't sounds the same. At all....IF you have certain expectations for how and what music you play. The B&W may not entice many buyers to spend the $3,200 for one fo the worlds best car audio systems, and luckily the HK offers a great listening experience. But the B&W deserves soooo much more distinction in it's quality than just "marginally better than the HK". I have listened to nearly every high end car audio option on the market, and literally one of the major reasons I purchased an S60 was because of the B&W system. Every time I jump out of my mom's car and into mine it's shocking at the difference in timbre, presence, and fidelity the B&W is. Only you can decide if your listening habits merit spending the money to upgrade, but don't be lead astray to think the HK system is "nearly as good". It very well may be good enough for many, but a true audiophile smiles every time a B&W listening session hits those crystal clear high frequencies and the seats literally shake from the undistorted base notes.
 

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I really don't want to re-open this can of worms... but I had two XC90s with B&W and one without. The two with B&W had rattling speakers Volvo dealers could not fix. I would pay extra for a car without it, at this point.

Even without rattles... it really is a subjective thing. The sound suffers from very heavy post-processing. I am not the greatest audiophile - but I do have some musical training, and a passion for sound... heck, my first job out of highschool was selling customized sound solutions for cars in Italy, in the '80s. Yet I am not impressed. It's a loud system - and the speakers covers are pretty. That's it.

Add to that the chunkiness of Sensus and how hard it is to store and organize music on it.... I really, truly, don't think it's worth it.

I know many people disagree, and it is a testament to the fact that sound perception is, after all, tremendously subjective. Professional reviews all rave about it. I am not offering my opinion because I think it is objectively right. I just want to point out that it is not as crystal clear (the issue, but the sound as well, if you want) as some here make it sound. But, to anyone considering it, I would say one thing - don't trust Volvo's marketing, overt or covert. Go to a dealer's lot, and trust your ears. If you like it, good for you.
 

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I know many people disagree, and it is a testament to the fact that sound perception is, after all, tremendously subjective. Professional reviews all rave about it
I think when professional reviews place it in the top 5 best audio systems ever installed in a car you can be pretty confident it's not marketing or just pretty speaker colors and cool stainless steel grills. Some of the early cars had speaker vibrations, but that has been largely solved and shouldn't be considered as "normal" should you buy a B&W system. You are right, everyone should listen themselves, but I still find it shocking people can say the two systems are are similar. I also don't find the post-processing to even be notable, but more a reference system. In 60 seconds I could show you the sounds stage between the two cars is miles apart, and there are many nuances you can't even reproduce in the HK system. Literally today I drove mom's HK car and played uncompressed audio that I just listened to last night on my drive home. The difference between the sound is night and day in my mind. Blindfold me and I could identify which system is which is 5 seconds. I'm still a firm believer many owners have not adjusted the B&W system to bring out the "flavor" of the music they enjoy most, nor do they listen to high-quality sources. If you don't, the listening experience between the two brands is much more similar. Audio is certainly subjective, so thanks for your input.
 

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Use Tidal and connect your phone through cable. Spotify and bluetooth take away some clarity and soundstage feels bit compressed (don't know if it's right word) compared with when using Tidal.

For me B&W is one of the things I enjoy most in my XC90. Another is the T8 drivetrain. It's so quiet. I have laminate side windows also.
If possible get B&W, it really is good. And for the 3200 euros Volvo is asking for it here in EU, it's a bargain. BMW is asking 6000 euros for comparable B&W system in their new X5 45e.
 

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I think when professional reviews place it in the top 5 best audio systems ever installed in a car you can be pretty confident it's not marketing or just pretty speaker colors and cool stainless steel grills. Some of the early cars had speaker vibrations, but that has been largely solved and shouldn't be considered as "normal" should you buy a B&W system. You are right, everyone should listen themselves, but I still find it shocking people can say the two systems are are similar. I also don't find the post-processing to even be notable, but more a reference system. In 60 seconds I could show you the sounds stage between the two cars is miles apart, and there are many nuances you can't even reproduce in the HK system. Literally today I drove mom's HK car and played uncompressed audio that I just listened to last night on my drive home. The difference between the sound is night and day in my mind. Blindfold me and I could identify which system is which is 5 seconds. I'm still a firm believer many owners have not adjusted the B&W system to bring out the "flavor" of the music they enjoy most, nor do they listen to high-quality sources. If you don't, the listening experience between the two brands is much more similar. Audio is certainly subjective, so thanks for your input.
My 2020 had the rattles with B&W. And my 2021 has the same rattles with B&W. The speakers are amazing. But not only are these late models, the 2021 has the slightly upgraded speakers (the gray color, not the yellow). Aesthetically, I miss the yellow. But there is zero difference in the annoying rattles. Same cause, same places. It's very disappointing.

Side note, on the 2021, I've had the speakers cut out after a loud "pop" twice within 1300 miles. No more sound anywhere. Except the bass...I could subtly hear it. No sensus sounds, no turn signals, parking sensors, phone, etc. Since Volvo's software update, I've had a loud "pop" several times, but audio continues. It's startling and I feel crazy to think this, but every time this happened I felt static electricity. The hairs on my arms stood up within the second of the "pop" sound. Sounds like a blown fuse, or worse, a shattered windshield or sunroof.

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My 2020 had the rattles with B&W. And my 2021 has the same rattles with B&W. The speakers are amazing. But not only are these late models, the 2021 has the slightly upgraded speakers (the gray color, not the yellow). Aesthetically, I miss the yellow. But there is zero difference in the annoying rattles. Same cause, same places. It's very disappointing.

Side note, on the 2021, I've had the speakers cut out after a loud "pop" twice within 1300 miles. No more sound anywhere. Except the bass...I could subtly hear it. No sensus sounds, no turn signals, parking sensors, phone, etc. Since Volvo's software update, I've had a loud "pop" several times, but audio continues. It's startling and I feel crazy to think this, but every time this happened I felt static electricity. The hairs on my arms stood up within the second of the "pop" sound. Sounds like a blown fuse, or worse, a shattered windshield or sunroof.

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Next time this happens, pull over and whip out your cell phone. Record the issue so the dealer can see the problem. You may also opt to invest in a dash camera to capture the initial "Popping Noise".

In my 15.5 S60, I had an issue where the backup camera was very intermittent. After 3 unsuccessful attempts at repairing issue, I captured the problem on video. Drove straight to dealer, let them see issue, and they finally got it resolved.

With these types of gremlins, especially with intermittent ones, documentation helps the dealer trace the root cause.

Food for thought.
 

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Next time this happens, pull over and whip out your cell phone. Record the issue so the dealer can see the problem. You may also opt to invest in a dash camera to capture the initial "Popping Noise".

In my 15.5 S60, I had an issue where the backup camera was very intermittent. After 3 unsuccessful attempts at repairing issue, I captured the problem on video. Drove straight to dealer, let them see issue, and they finally got it resolved.

With these types of gremlins, especially with intermittent ones, documentation helps the dealer trace the root cause.

Food for thought.
I have every popping noise on dash cam. Interior view and exterior view. The dash cam footage (with audio) is why the dealer believed me and they did the software update after the first two times. It was described as a "fix" from the service advisor. Although the software update was strictly for the orange key and audio limitations. The orange key was never near the car or in the car when these pops have occurred. And the pops continued, albeit the audio continued working.

Once I bring it in for a tire rotate, I'll address it again. As for the rattling, I'll ask. But it's a clear design flaw in the door panels. Same design used since at least the 2017 models. It was never addressed in design or production. So I wonder what fix there is.

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My 2020 had the rattles with B&W. And my 2021 has the same rattles with B&W. The speakers are amazing. But not only are these late models, the 2021 has the slightly upgraded speakers (the gray color, not the yellow). Aesthetically, I miss the yellow. But there is zero difference in the annoying rattles. Same cause, same places. It's very disappointing.

Side note, on the 2021, I've had the speakers cut out after a loud "pop" twice within 1300 miles. No more sound anywhere. Except the bass...I could subtly hear it. No sensus sounds, no turn signals, parking sensors, phone, etc. Since Volvo's software update, I've had a loud "pop" several times, but audio continues. It's startling and I feel crazy to think this, but every time this happened I felt static electricity. The hairs on my arms stood up within the second of the "pop" sound. Sounds like a blown fuse, or worse, a shattered windshield or sunroof.

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This matches my experience exactly. I had two XC90s with B&W (well, one mine, one my GF's), 5 years apart in models (2016 and 2021) and, despite the re-design, they have the exact, same, rattle, in the exact, same, spot, at the exact, same, frequency. In both cases, multiple visits to multiple Volvo dealerships did not solve anything. All of the techs acknowledged the rattles, but responses varied from "I don't know how to fix this," to "It's normal, they all rattle."

So I do question how "normal" or "abnormal" this all is. I am sure not all of them rattle (although I have not heard one that does not). But the chance of getting one with rattles is not negligible.

When my GF was buying her car, we did not want B&W. Even the dealer acknowledged that it rattles, but we had to wait three extra months for the same spec without B&W - we were eventually able to negotiate and get it "for free" - yea, I know, it's never free, but ok. Nevertheless, I'd rather have the base system.

We had the "pop" once, in 4k miles, followed by a complete loss of all audio. It's scary as all hell. Super-loud, I was convinced the windshield had exploded, or something. It happened in the first 100 miles and has not happened again. The dealer shrugged it off as "stuff that happens."


I will stop, I know I am sounding like a broken record. But it is frustrating - on one side, I have rattling speakers and the dealers are not doing anything - even claiming it's normal and inevitable - and then I come here and read about how the problem has been solved and it does not occur anymore. But I realize that posting about it won't change anything...
 

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It's odd that some of us never have B&W rattles. EVER. I've been in a number of cars and any vibration buzz is so occasional I don't think it's even fair classifying it as an issue It's also interesting that it seems a lot of the comments about speaker buzzing is only on the 90 series. As far as addressing the problem, there has indeed been changes made on the assembly line, and there are specific TSBs about speaker noise. My mom's HK system has a driver door tweeter grill buzz that's pretty bad but is clearly a loose grill. It's certainly hard to develop these systems to not create rattles. I can literally see the door panel move a few millimeters every time the base hits, so its no wonder things have to be screwed down perfectly to not rattle. My R8's Bang and Olufsen system had some speaker vibrations as well (but it didn't sound nearly as good).
 

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It's odd that some of us never have B&W rattles. EVER. I've been in a number of cars and any vibration buzz is so occasional I don't think it's even fair classifying it as an issue It's also interesting that it seems a lot of the comments about speaker buzzing is only on the 90 series. As far as addressing the problem, there has indeed been changes made on the assembly line, and there are specific TSBs about speaker noise. My mom's HK system has a driver door tweeter grill buzz that's pretty bad but is clearly a loose grill. It's certainly hard to develop these systems to not create rattles. I can literally see the door panel move a few millimeters every time the base hits, so its no wonder things have to be screwed down perfectly to not rattle. My R8's Bang and Olufsen system had some speaker vibrations as well (but it didn't sound nearly as good).
I think you're correct: the complaints seem to be on the 90 models. It seems to have something to do with the length of the door panel, the materials that are mated together along the door pocket and the lowest speaker, and the lack of rigidity of the panel that makes up the cup holder/storage pocket.

I circled the areas that rattle on the pictures. The length of that panel is probably longest of the Volvo 90 models. One (all black) is the 2017 and the other (with brown) is the 2021. When I pull on these panels in both cars, they make the same squeaking and have the same amount of movement/flex/play. 4 years apart in builds and with my non-scientific analysis, they are exactly the same. And there certainly wasn't any difference in my 2020 XC90 either.


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I think you're correct: the complaints seem to be on the 90 models. It seems to have something to do with the length of the door panel, the materials that are mated together along the door pocket and the lowest speaker, and the lack of rigidity of the panel that makes up the cup holder/storage pocket.

I circled the areas that rattle on the pictures. The length of that panel is probably longest of the Volvo 90 models. One (all black) is the 2017 and the other (with brown) is the 2021. When I pull on these panels in both cars, they make the same squeaking and have the same amount of movement/flex/play. 4 years apart in builds and with my non-scientific analysis, they are exactly the same. And there certainly wasn't any difference in my 2020 XC90 either.


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That's a shame you can't get that resolved. That is indeed a design difference with the 60 series, the panels are not quite like that with fewer seams. Panels come off easily. If I were you I'd pull a panel and see about separating that map pocket piece and use some felt tape and see if I could fix it on my own. It is crummy it can't be addressed under warranty. As someone that has worked with a number of Luxury brands in service, I can assure you all brands spend endless hours chasing door panel vibration issues from speakers.....
 

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Add us to the list of folks that have experienced the very loud POPPING sound from what seemed to be the B&W system. This was in a 6-week old 2021 T8. I wasn't in the car at the time, but my wife thought something smashed into the windshield or the front-end, but it was her passenger that pointed out it sounded like it came from the speakers. Everything checked out fine, though, and the B&W sounds normal at every speaker throughout.

But since this thread was originally about the worthiness of the B&W - I say yes, absolutely. Especially now since I stopped listening to SiriusXM via the satellite and started listening to my favorite channels via the SiriusXM CarPlay app.
 

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I have every popping noise on dash cam. Interior view and exterior view. The dash cam footage (with audio) is why the dealer believed me and they did the software update after the first two times. It was described as a "fix" from the service advisor. Although the software update was strictly for the orange key and audio limitations. The orange key was never near the car or in the car when these pops have occurred. And the pops continued, albeit the audio continued working.

Once I bring it in for a tire rotate, I'll address it again. As for the rattling, I'll ask. But it's a clear design flaw in the door panels. Same design used since at least the 2017 models. It was never addressed in design or production. So I wonder what fix there is.

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+1 Dash Cameras.

The fix would be asking the Dealer to involve Volvo Help Desk. Provide a copy of the video, with all the fun popping sounds, to the dealer. Let them supply this to Help Desk, and send out a Tech. Clearly, if it's a design flaw and you can prove as such, Volvo may address the issue.

These are the types of issues that are generally written off as a customer being "whiny" unless there's hard proof. You've got the proof, and now need to get it into the right hands.
 

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I'm late to the party, but count me among those vouching for the B&W. Our 2018 hasn't had any popping noises thankfully. The downside is the wife drives the Volvo and when I drive my E350, which has a mid-upgraded sound system, I feel like the audio is lacking.
 

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Well, the B&W has been amazing for me using Amazon HD streaming... Definitely an upgrade over the standard system in my previous 2016 XC90. I did however have the rattle problem and using a signal generator from my iPhone was able to isolate some problem areas... I cover this in my post below.

Sound Deadening for B&W
 
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