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Thread: Car Audio.

  1. #431
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    That looks great! For the features and price I don't think you could do better with the traditional brands. Saab did indeed swap the permanent and switched 12v feeds in their ISO connectors - strange that only some settings are lost though - perhaps a battery backup in the unit for more important stuff?

    Most head units used two leads for a low current switched 12v out, one for antenna and one for an amplifier. The idea being that if the car had a retractable electric aerial it would only extend when needed and could be dropped for car washes and the like. When they first appeared I honestly couldn't tell you how many installs I had to fix because the sound was only coming out for the FM radio source! Also they don't like more than ~300ma or so and are generally either non-fused or have an internal one that requires unit disassembly to access, by the time you have an electric aerial and a few amps you could be straying near that depending on the components involved.

  2. #432
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    So far - which is not very far - I am sure what's missing in a $200 Android versus a $200 Pioneer is polish. Lots of stuff is a little off - for example, you can't hit the physical buttons on their icon - you gotta touch them a little off center or they don't register. Stuff like that. But so far I haven't found any dealbreakers, so that's positive. Still barely scratched the surface, however.

    I was mostly just surprised to find discrete amp/ant leads - that's a very "specialized" feature that most consumer-grade car stereos don't have. Really just Alpine and some Kenwood. Usually these off-brand stereos really keep it cheap, but it's nice to see they tried. Two 500ma switches! Not bad.

    Gonna install the SWCs, mic and GPS antenna today... we'll see how that goes.

  3. #433
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    Looks sweet, bro. I'm now trying to figure out if I should get a 512GB SD card and stick all my FLAC rips onto it for when (for whatever reason) I don't want to listen to music that's on the phone. It's more likely I'll just stick with a 200-256GB SD card and MP3s.

  4. #434
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    I have now achieved total failure.

    It started with the power antenna not working. I thought perhaps I had miswired something, so I removed the unit enough to get a multimeter on the connectors. 12v from the amp control, 0v from the antenna control. For grins I disconnected the amp control and connected it to the antenna and that worked. So, I know for sure the antenna works on just 12v (I knew that already) and I know for sure my wiring is good. The head unit just isn't powering up the antenna lead for whatever reason.

    I played with it for a couple hours, including a factory reset. That was a bad idea... display came up scrambled again and has essentially remained that way ever since. A couple reboots got it straightened out, then failure again.

    I contacted the seller... now I get to see how onerous aliexpress is to deal with. I'm actually not expecting too bad - the merchant doesn't get paid until I ok the transaction, and I always have my credit card's dispute process to fall back on. I think what it really comes down to is whether I'm gonna have to ship this thing back to Hong Kong or not on my own dime... and whether I have to do that first or if they will send an advance replacement. I really hope the latter, as I do *not* want to have to redo the wiring harness and I do not want to have to remove & reinstall the GPS antenna. That would suck balls.

    In in the interim, back to the stock stereo. Here's to a zero-mod stereo install.

  5. #435
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    I didn't want to end the weekend on a low note, so I spent some time on the SPG, getting more wiring done. The dog's surgery jacked up my rhythm and I've found it hard to get it back. When things are fresh in your head you can get back to them day after day, but take a month off and it's a big hurdle to remember where you were and what you were doing. But, I spent 12 hours on the SPG yesterday and I feel like I'm on track there.

    The factory set up is a pair of 4x10s in the rear deck. It's a crap speaker size and a crap location. The first 900 (and 99s before them) had little 4" Philips speakers in the rear side panels, and I've seen & done similar on other 900s since. What I ran into here in 2017 was totally unexpected: Nobody makes a shallow 4" or 5.25" speaker with a grille anymore. WTF? "No grilles included" was becoming really annoying. So, I hit up a junkyard a couple weeks ago and sliced up a car real bad, real real bad, so I could take some measurements and determined exactly what I was working with.

    What I found was that I could clear 6.5" speakers with a 2" depth.



    TBH, I'm not super pleased with how crowded that looks, but a) choices were limited, b) I don't have to sit back there (actually, nobody can - no seatbelts), and c) I couldn't continue with 4x10s. It'll do. Nicely, the speaker that fit 6.5"/2" depth/with grilles were Infinity Reference 6520CX components, which are exactly the same speakers I'm using in the front. I'm actually kinda stoked about that. Both are connected to that "mini" Kenwood KAC-M1804 amp, so I should have some good sound. Eventually. I think I'm calling off the front door project for now - it's a buttload of fabrication and I'm not prepared for it.

    Installing these speakers went great. I learned a lot about hardware since the last time I tried this. I ordered some M4 tee nuts and button-head M4x30mm screws from McMcMaster-Carr, which resulted in a super-clean, super-sturdy mounting. I had to get creative with the top screw using scrap from the cutouts, but it worked great. This will be the first time I've done this install where I can actually remove the speakers from the panels without cursing. All the other installs were really clumsy.



    So, at least some car audio success this weekend.

  6. #436
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    On another note, I've realised that the stock interface also accepts an ipod. I'm going to see how it handles my ipod which has had a 256GB flash card installed into it. The interface can't possibly be worse than the one in my old Alpine!

  7. #437
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    The joying looks good! Hopefully if you get a new unit from the seller everything will work out. :cheers:


    Why did you install the Infinity speakers sideways?

  8. #438
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    To make enough room to clear the speaker cables without straining them.

  9. #439
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    <-- I was kidding.

  10. #440
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    No, it's a legit question and I'm annoyed that Infinity created grilles that support limited installation orientations. It's pointless and short sighted. But, we make do... although it's gonna bug me a bit for a while.

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