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Pro S AWD | Moonstone | Lunar Grey
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I would not modify the sound. If you were to injure or kill a pedestrian and the sound was found to be modified you could be sued or possibly have charges brought against you.
Absolutely. While some people, pedestrians and drivers, can act stupidly at times it’s not an excuse for putting lives at risk. And yes perhaps on a quiet street the sound may be louder than desired, on the bright side the neighbours should be thankful they and their kids are safer because of it.

Tampering with a mandated security system in a vehicle is a recipe for some serious pain and suffering for drivers, pedestrians and cyclists.

If you can’t live with the pedestrian warning sound buy another vehicle.
 

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2021 AWD Pro S
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2021 FE Mythos Black
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VW ID.4 1st (picked up 3/19/21).
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oddly enough i'd probably be more ok with the volume if it was a fart noise, and i'm not sure what that says about me.
In some ways I would have liked some customizability myself:
  • Star Wars tie fighter.
  • Jetsons car
  • Chainsaw.
  • Old 2-cylinder John Deere tractor.
  • Old VW bug engine noise.
All of that is probably far too complicated to engineer in a way that met the requirements.

The other day a runner cut right in front of me. I don't know whether she had earbuds or other such - that's another form of stupidity.
 

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Happy owner of a blue ID.4 First Edition
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Discussion Starter · #168 ·
As the OP let me just state that I was extremely careful how I wrote the title and text of my post.

I still maintain that VW made my ID4 louder than legally required, and as proof, I supplied the loudness as measured by my trusty, but not officially calibrated sound level meter. I don't hate the sound, but I don't love it either. I just wish VW would have installed an attenuator or another way of playing the sound at less than full volume, instead of us lusting after an L pad that @fiehlsport explained, but which exposes us to untold legal issues. There is plenty of room for a happy middle ground.
 

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I live at the end of a twisty one-lane road with homes on both sides. There are no sidewalks, and no room for sidewalks, so everyone walks on the street. Some people in the neighborhood are elderly. I have driven up behind pedestrians and been surprised that some of them do not hear the car. I can't speak for other ID.4s but mine is not too loud. Sometimes it's not loud enough.

I would not call my elderly neighbors "stupid people."
 

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ID.4 RWD Pro S Dusk Blue
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I live at the end of a twisty one-lane road with homes on both sides. There are no sidewalks, and no room for sidewalks, so everyone walks on the street. Some people in the neighborhood are elderly. I have driven up behind pedestrians and been surprised that some of them do not hear the car. I can't speak for other ID.4s but mine is not too loud. Sometimes it's not loud enough.

I would not call my elderly neighbors "stupid people."
With mine, it is very loud when reversing (so much so that my family complains that they can hear it on the other side of the house when I back into the garage), and very loud between 10-20 mph (even with music playing I can hear it). Below 10 mph it is so low that if you were not listening for it, you could not tell it even had a sound (I turned off the radio, lowered my windows and drove in my work parking lot that has walls on both sides, but still could not hear it). I know it is supposed to adjust how loud it is based on speed, but I wonder if mine has a bug causing this large of a difference.
 

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'22 Niro EV, '19 Ioniq EV
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My sound modules have part numbers ending in "A" and "B" - someone here had one that ended in "J."

It's possible that the J boxes are quieter modules... but I would think the A & B versions could also be quieted down by software considering they're on the CANBUS like everything else. Curious why there are 3 or more part numbers for these...

The A & B boxes were physically the same in my hand.
 

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ID.4 1st Edition
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I presume the typical changes in vendors in a JIS/JIT production system. As we know chips of all types are harder to come by these days, so ...

Design never really ends, at least not within Manufacturing Engineering. There is a Change Notice process that sometimes is used just for changing vendors and sometimes minor changes in the components themselves (to improve the part and/or to broaden spec's to allow more vendors with off the shelf items in their inventory). There can of course also be major changes, in concert with the designers. Often times a number of changes are grouped and implemented say midway thru a production cycle. Of course safety changes are implemented almost immediately and typically by formal recalls.
My sound modules have part numbers ending in "A" and "B" - someone here had one that ended in "J."

It's possible that the J boxes are quieter modules... but I would think the A & B versions could also be quieted down by software considering they're on the CANBUS like everything else. Curious why there are 3 or more part numbers for these...

The A & B boxes were physically the same in my hand.
 

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With mine, it is very loud when reversing (so much so that my family complains that they can hear it on the other side of the house when I back into the garage), and very loud between 10-20 mph (even with music playing I can hear it). Below 10 mph it is so low that if you were not listening for it, you could not tell it even had a sound (I turned off the radio, lowered my windows and drove in my work parking lot that has walls on both sides, but still could not hear it). I know it is supposed to adjust how loud it is based on speed, but I wonder if mine has a bug causing this large of a difference.
Mine is also like this: loudest at 16-19mph, still pretty loud at 12-15, clearly audible at 10-11, kinda quiet at any speed below that... then seems a bit louder at 0 when not in park. And reverse is always around that "loudest" or "pretty loud" mark.

The tone mix also changes with speed, with lower tones at lower speeds, more 1500hz at 12+, plus more 2500hz at 16+. I personally get more annoyed by 1200-3000hz sounds so I'll avoid the 14-19mph range if it's safe and convenient to do so. In my neighborhood this means dropping to 10mph. In other neighborhoods I like the greater noise on the assumption others aren't familiar with the car and I'm not familiar with the neighbors.

The cutoff may be 18 but my speedo is definitely 19 when the car is its loudest... but speedo calibration seems like a different thread topic.
 

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On loudness of reverse:
I have noticed in some parking lots pedestrians that I wait to cross behind me will not do so if I'm in reverse. I'm a slow backer-outer, so I usually want to let ppl by if they're approaching within 3 spaces. I'm learning to not rely on the reverse camera for pre-movement spotting of pedestrians behind me, since I don't get the camera until I shift into reverse.

I've also encountered a parking-lot situation where an approaching driver behind me slowed and feinted to park out of my reversing path, then (perhaps spotting a better stall ahead) quickly accelerated behind me as I was pulling out. My reversing noisemaker drowned out their tire noise, reducing my sensory input to visual only for a split second before the car's impending-obstruction tones kicked in. As I started my reaction-braking, the brake pedal was actively fading away underfoot, as the car was engaging the brake the same time I was. It was pretty unsettling to not hear that car's approach... but reassuring to find that in that instance my car would have successfully "self-braked" on its own.
 

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The wife and I were watching The Force Awakens the other night and there's a scene where an Imperial shuttle lands on the lava planet to pick up the husk of Lord Vader and she commented that the sound of that shuttle landing sounded just like the ID.4 So I no longer think of the Jetsons. 🤣
 
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An update for those who might want to figure out how to disable the pedestrian warning and enjoy some silence when you drive.

Should you have to replace the part, it's a $305 replacement. This would be required if, say, you wanted to sell the car.

There is a way to open up the part and place resistors so the car still thinks there's a speaker there...but if I had it to do over again I'd just undo the connector on the sound generator and tape it up. Have to live with a warning each time starting the car, but it's completely and easily reversible.
 

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OK, a further update on this one. I've received my amazingly expensive replacement part - from Toronto, no less - and installed it. Works just by plugging in, no need to clear any codes. Still just as loud and annoying as the first one, so I'm guessing based on my sample size of two that they're all the same ridiculous volume.

It doesn't ship with any cover for the plug port, which is kind of disappointing. I'd have liked to cover that up and unplug the new one for a while until I can get the car sold/traded in. Ah, well.

So...anyone want a slightly destroyed front sound generator to play with? I'm unsure what I did to break it and/or if it's repairable. If you'll cover the cost of shipping (about $15-20 or so) I'll get it to you. PM me for arrangements if you'd like it.
 

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Enthusiastic 1st Edition Owner
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I took about a mile walk down to our local retail district fire a morning cup of Joe, after waking my kiddo to school.

I forgot my headphones, so was using my phone transistor radio-style, listening to a podcast.

What i couldn't help but notice (and immediately thought of this thread) was how noisy all the ICE cars are! These aren't jalopies, they're recent model Mercedes and mini vans and Yukons and such.

It's a narrow residential street I was walking along. Speeds were probably 20 to 25 MPH.

What I noticed is these "quiet" cars generated so much noise the drowned out my phone, which a had a little louder than necessary to hear had it been perfectly quiet.

I believe we're so accustom and accepting of "car noise" that many of us automatical tune it out, or it blends in with the ever present drone of traffic from distance busy roads and highways.

I'm going to have to do a little comparison listening of the ID 4 driving past under similar conditions.
 
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