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      03-22-2014, 05:59 AM   #1
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New AV Equipment for BMW E90

So after toying with the idea for many months on whether to do a custom install of an iPad Mini or just going for a ready made solution which requires minimal customization of the dash.

I have decided to do a dedicated install using the Pioneer AVH-8500BT Head Unit

Here is the what I've purchased so far after reading many manuals.

Pioneer AVH-8500BT Head Unit - 375 from Amazon
Pioneer CD-IH202 interface cable for iPhone - 15 from Ebay - You dont need this cable for iphone5 there is no socket for it in the HU
iPhone Lightning Digital AV Adapter - 40 from Apple
Connects2 CTKBM01 Double Din Adapter Kit - 120 from Ebay
Pioneer Parking Brake Bypass - to allow for video in motion £20 from the USA incl shipping. - Also not required as you can directly wire the parking brake wire to any ground to bypass.

I got inspired after seeing a similar install on here using the AVH-8400BH.
Linky Here from ScubaSteve2365

I have the basic stereo installation. Not sure what you seasoned vets would call it, but I believe it's Professional. 6 speakers, no amp, all speakers are 4 ohms.

I intend do a full write up of installation in this thread with pictures and any hurdles I encounter to hopefully help out anyone else in the future.

My main concerns lie with stalk control interface (mainly phone calls) and reverse (which wire to hook this into). The HU also allows for speed pulse and parking break monitoring, not sure if this will be applicable but needless to say it will be interested to see if they are required.

Unfortunately I'm stuck on an oil rig in Denmark for the foreseeable future so wont probably get round to doing the install until early April.

Just hoping that if anyone has any tips or has done anything similar, I'm all ears to any suggestions or help you have to offer.

After this phase I will work on the speakers and Amps (SoundStage).

I'm ok with fabrication and will customise the door cards to accept 4" mid and 6.5 woofer, and also add a tweeter to the window trim.

Rainbow Soundline SL-C6.3 will be the components of choice
Rainbow iPaul4.3 will be the amp to drive them.

I have already purchased two JL AUDIO - 6w3v3 (4Ohm versions) and feel these may be good to get some deep base into the car. I originally purchased them for my Mini CooperS R56 but I feel they may work well in the Bimmer (Not sure where to place them). I'll run these thru my old Phoenix Gold. 5.0.1 at 2 Ohms from the amp and wire the 2 subs accordingly. I also have a Phoenix Gold X12D4 dual coil sub which I could use in a custom enclosure in the boot. I'm undecided yet. (Although a great sub and it really is, it just looks a bit naff to be fair).

Anyways that the project - lets see how it unravels
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      03-22-2014, 03:40 PM   #2
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Will be very interested in the sound quality improvement you'llbe able to affect from this change.
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      03-23-2014, 09:42 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
My main concerns lie with stalk control interface (mainly phone calls) and reverse (which wire to hook this into). The HU also allows for speed pulse and parking break monitoring, not sure if this will be applicable but needless to say it will be interested to see if they are required.
The connects2 harness takes care of all this. For the parking brake I used a microbypass, but the connects2 harness does have a parking brake wire.

If your car has a MOST bus you might want to relocate your stock headunit. To do this find the metra harness that plugs into the stock head unit and extend power, ground, and can wires from the connects2 harness to the metra harness in the trunk. You'll need a MOST loop in the dash, and you should have extra MOST cables in the trunk already. You just need to switch the order of them around in the MOST distribution block.
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      03-23-2014, 11:13 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw325i
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
My main concerns lie with stalk control interface (mainly phone calls) and reverse (which wire to hook this into). The HU also allows for speed pulse and parking break monitoring, not sure if this will be applicable but needless to say it will be interested to see if they are required.
The connects2 harness takes care of all this. For the parking brake I used a microbypass, but the connects2 harness does have a parking brake wire.

If your car has a MOST bus you might want to relocate your stock headunit. To do this find the metra harness that plugs into the stock head unit and extend power, ground, and can wires from the connects2 harness to the metra harness in the trunk. You'll need a MOST loop in the dash, and you should have extra MOST cables in the trunk already. You just need to switch the order of them around in the MOST distribution block.
The car is registered in feb 2008, it only has the basic headunit.

How can you tell if it has a MOST bus?

Thanks in advance
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      03-24-2014, 03:34 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
The car is registered in feb 2008, it only has the basic headunit.

How can you tell if it has a MOST bus?

Thanks in advance
You can take out the stock headunit and see if there are any green fiber optic cables going to the stock headunit, or you can look behind the drivers side rear seat bolster where the most distribution block is. If you don't have folding seats this requires removing the rear seat.

If you don't have BMW assist or you don't care if the dealer can connect to your car then it's not really necessary to relocate the headunit.
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      03-24-2014, 05:08 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw325i

You can take out the stock headunit and see if there are any green fiber optic cables going to the stock headunit, or you can look behind the drivers side rear seat bolster where the most distribution block is. If you don't have folding seats this requires removing the rear seat.

If you don't have BMW assist or you don't care if the dealer can connect to your car then it's not really necessary to relocate the headunit.
Many Thanks,

I forgot to reply/add yesterday i did some research on this forum.

There is a possible chance of losing PDC beeps, SOS (which is what you are referring to).

I have had the rear seats out before when upgrading to leather M Sport seats, i dont remember seeing any green wires going into little black boxes.

I think i will probably just check the back of the head unit.

Thanks for the pointers, really appreciate it.
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      03-24-2014, 10:02 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
Many Thanks,

I forgot to reply/add yesterday i did some research on this forum.

There is a possible chance of losing PDC beeps, SOS (which is what you are referring to).

I have had the rear seats out before when upgrading to leather M Sport seats, i dont remember seeing any green wires going into little black boxes.

I think i will probably just check the back of the head unit.

Thanks for the pointers, really appreciate it.
Yep that is a good idea. The connects2 harness you got has the pdc module, but it doesn't work on amplified systems. You could always use the rear speakers for pdc powered off the aftermarket headunit, and amp the front speakers and underseats.
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      03-24-2014, 10:38 AM   #8
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Your info is invaluable

My system is non amped so should be ok.

I just bought the cable to bypass the handbrake/motion lock.

Should have all bits at home by the time i get back from Denmark, so expect full write up of installation process.

Cheers
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      03-24-2014, 10:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
Your info is invaluable

My system is non amped so should be ok.

I just bought the cable to bypass the handbrake/motion lock.

Should have all bits at home by the time i get back from Denmark, so expect full write up of installation process.

Cheers
I've spent a good amount of time figuring this stuff out so I'm happy to help. PDC will work fine since you have the base system. You could always amp the front speakers and underseats later and still keep the pdc chimes in the rear.
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      04-02-2014, 04:22 AM   #10
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Ok, So I have installed the head unit with the connects 2 kit. I have some pictures I will upload later on. There are a few tricky bits to the installation which I will also cover.

I just wanted to say that just by upgrading the head unit alone has drastically improved the SQ of the standard BMW system. I think the original HU held back on the speakers. The speakers are capable of going buch louder than the stock HU allows.

First impressions of the AVH-8500BT(UK version) - Well it's pioneer and everything just works, had the phone setup in seconds over Bluetooth. Plug a USB stick in and it starts to play the music on the stick. I own a Pioneer SC-1223K AV Receiver for my home cinema and that just works too.

The screen is clear and pretty snappy when selecting inputs and options.

The connects2 kit - the wiring looms and ISO adapters and CANBUS box all work well. All the steering wheel controls work well, except the phone button, but I think that is to do with the headunits control rather than the loom. Even the reverse parking chimes have changed to a different sound. You get a distinct beep when putting it into reverse to let you know it's ready and the beeps when you start getting close to something actually come from the speaker side that is closest to the danger, really quite cool.
However the facia that comes with the kit is a bit naff.

Anyways, just thought I'd share my initial experience and will upload more of a walk thru of the install later on tonight.

Cheers
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      04-02-2014, 09:28 AM   #11
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changing your head unit made a huge improvement because of the parabolic-looking EQ curve that it applies to your signals. now you have a flat signal.
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      04-02-2014, 10:31 AM   #12
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i have also installed a double din and used the connects 2 kit i have to say the fascia that they give is very poor and doesnt look professional as it has a gap of 2cm at the bottom but sound is much better compared to the stock headset
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      04-02-2014, 11:02 AM   #13
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Have those that replaced their hifi head units also experienced a SQ improvement?
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      04-02-2014, 11:03 AM   #14
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This dash kit should fit better than the Metra kit.

http://www.mybimmer.net/E9x_doubledintrim.htm
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      04-02-2014, 01:41 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdgatti View Post
Have those that replaced their hifi head units also experienced a SQ improvement?
I coded my stock headunit to hifi and I thought the sq was quite a bit better with the aftermarket headunit. I got rid of my ms8 when I installed the headunit so I'm not sure if the better sq was from the new headunit or from getting rid of the ms8. Also I didn't have oem Bluetooth or USB so the aux connection could have also been part of the problem.
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      04-02-2014, 04:34 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathematics View Post
changing your head unit made a huge improvement because of the parabolic-looking EQ curve that it applies to your signals. now you have a flat signal.
Thanks for confirming that the standard HU sucks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by asad5150 View Post
i have also installed a double din and used the connects 2 kit i have to say the fascia that they give is very poor and doesnt look professional as it has a gap of 2cm at the bottom but sound is much better compared to the stock headset
Yep, the facia is way below par of what you might expect if you bought it on it's own for 45 - but the wiring gear that comes with is pretty amazing, i can't fault it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by bmw325i View Post
I coded my stock headunit to hifi and I thought the sq was quite a bit better with the aftermarket headunit. I got rid of my ms8 when I installed the headunit so I'm not sure if the better sq was from the new headunit or from getting rid of the ms8. Also I didn't have oem Bluetooth or USB so the aux connection could have also been part of the problem.
Interesting..... to many variables to decipher the issue, but glad you are enjoying the new rig

So I got a couple of pics to show you, however I still need to do my write up of the underlyinging probs i found during my install.. however here is the beginning and end.



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      04-02-2014, 05:25 PM   #17
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Looks good. I don't see why everybody insists on keeping the stock headunit. On almost any other car it would be the first thing you replace if your upgrading the audio system.
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      04-02-2014, 09:06 PM   #18
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I think most would say because of the errors in the dash that are created. In my case, I don't have pdc, but don't want errors from losing the bmw assist.
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      04-02-2014, 09:49 PM   #19
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Originally Posted by cdgatti View Post
I think most would say because of the errors in the dash that are created. In my case, I don't have pdc, but don't want errors from losing the bmw assist.
There are no errors if you relocate the stock headunit or have no options that use MOST. You can use the rear speakers for pdc either by using the stock headunit or the connects2 harness with the pdc adapter. With a double din you can add a rear view camera which is even better than pdc IMO.
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      04-03-2014, 06:40 AM   #20
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So here goes with the installation.

I used the this guide here for the most part of the install, although it's not for my HU(Deck) the motions are still the same for getting into the car.

Dynavin E90 Install Guide

You will find most of what you need in the guide above however there were a few tricky bits which I will elaborate on here.

I would strongly recommend removing all the stuff out of your glove box, and taking the back panel of for the fuse box as this is where all my cable runs go to including the 15A Supply for the stereo which I put in an empty 15A slot in the fuse box using a spade connector. In my case No.2 was free and 15A so used that.



I would also recommend removing the trim around the cup holders and removing the cup holders as you can see alot better when feeding your wires in that area. There are just 2 torx screws per cup holder to remove once you got the trim off. Picture below shows the cup holder with the screw removed.



There was only 2 I need to put through there, 1 was the Constant 12V supply for the stereo and the other was the microphone.



For installing the Microphone

First things first is to remove the 2 sunvisor clips that hold it in place. there is a hidden Torx T-20 screw behind a flap. You will need to remove both of these to allow for the roofliner to pop down without creasing it. so you can remove the roof center console with the lights in.

Get a small flathead screwdriver and pop the cover off to expose the screw and remove.



Once the both sunvisor clips are removed you can then pull the head liner down and press these two silver clips in to release the light unit. please support this when releasing the clips, as there are wires going into it.



Once this is out, unclip the connectors going into the back of the unit. I did this so I could work better with it. I didn't have a microphone in the overhead console. BMW put a blanking plate in there which can be removed by using your small screwdriver and pressing the clip in to release the blank and pull it out. The shot below shows where this blank is housed, but removed and the new mic fitted.



I then ran the mic cable down the roofliner and down the left pillar, the wire is thin enough just to tuck behind the A piller cover and then run behind the glove box. There is a plastic cover at the bottom of the A Pillar, adjacent to the glove box which pops of and you can feed the wire here and behind the glove box into the center console where the new stereo is going in.


VIDEO IN MOTION BYPASS

So this particular head unit, I only had to ground the parking brake wire to get it to work. (I bought the actual one for $20 of a guy, but then realised I didn't need it.

When you remove the original stereo there are 2 8mm bolts that you remove and didn't require them to go back in for the new stereo. I saw that there was metal to metal contact which equals ground so used this. I stripped back quite a bit of the insulation and just coiled the bare wires round the bolt and screwed it back in.



CANBUS BOX

The dynavin tutorial has a different box with an LED, the connects 2 kit doesn't, so I just plug it in. Now there is a wierd thing here you have to connect the 8 pin connector from the harness over the box from the same loom. seemed a bit odd to me but it works.




Placement of Looms/Connectors

I put the Large ISO connector and the Canbus box to the glove box side as there was a large void where these fitted quite nicely and out of the way. I then coiled the rest of the loom and other connector(black one for the stereo side) to go in the drivers side void.

Connects 2 Stereo brackets and Fitting

Well this was a little puzzle, the destructions that come with the connects 2 kit aren't worth the paper they are printed on. Firstly you don't need the Head Unit cage that comes with the HU. Just use the screws and screw these 2 plastic brackets onto the sides of the HU. They are labelled left and right. And should be mounted like in the picture below. There are actually only 2 screws that hold the lot in place.







CLIMATE CONTROL TRIMMING

Ok so everyone says this needs trimming, but why??? I just want to show you why, for those that haven't done this yet.




And that is pretty much it.
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      04-15-2014, 03:37 AM   #21
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Just an update on this and getting the iPhone 5S working with AppRadio mode. I've updated the first post also as there are 2 cables which really are not required even tho the pioneer manuals and other forums talk about them alot. Any HDMI cable will do and also you need only connect the lightning to usb cable directly to the head unit.

I may have just been stupid but the instructions were not very clear in the manual or onscreen on how to change the "App Connection Setttings" on the head unit from "Other"(for Android) to "Digital AV(iPhone)".

A quick set of instructions incase anyone else is interested.

1. Turn off your bluetooth on the phone.
2. Disconnect the lightning to USB cable and the HDMI cable from the Apple Digital AV Adapter. (you do not need to disconnect from back of HU).
3. Press the home button on the Head Unit (four squares iconed button in center of HU)
4. There is an icon on the home screen that says "Off" touch this.
5. Swipe the screen to go to the next home screen and repeat step 4.

Only once all of the above criteria has been met can you switch the "App Connection Settings to iphone". So

6. Click on Settings button on home screen and select App Connection Settings.
You will still receive a warning but now you can press the "Other" word to switch to Digital AV(iPhone) setting.

7 connect all the cables back to Apple Digital AV Adapter and connect your iphone to the Digital AV adapter lightning cable. You will also need to turn on your bluetooth on the phone and connect to the head unit.

Not exactly what I would call straight forward. You will also need 2 Apps from the app store which are free. CarMediaPlayer and AppRadio at the very least to connect to the appradio mode and listen to your music on your iphone with full navigation control.

I also have Waze(Navigation) and DashCommand(Vehicle Info) which also works with Appradio mode and are fully touch integrated with the unit.

So Anyways after about a week I guess and hooking up my MCACC mic from my Pioneer AV Receiver and letting the system do an auto EQ, the sound quality is even better than the Pioneer Stock settings. I'm truely impressed with the SQ and can't wait now to upgrade my speakers to get the full potential out of the unit.
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      04-18-2014, 09:40 AM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheesegeezer View Post
So here goes with the installation.

I used the this guide here for the most part of the install, although it's not for my HU(Deck) the motions are still the same for getting into the car.

Dynavin E90 Install Guide

You will find most of what you need in the guide above however there were a few tricky bits which I will elaborate on here.

I would strongly recommend removing all the stuff out of your glove box, and taking the back panel of for the fuse box as this is where all my cable runs go to including the 15A Supply for the stereo which I put in an empty 15A slot in the fuse box using a spade connector. In my case No.2 was free and 15A so used that.




I would also recommend removing the trim around the cup holders and removing the cup holders as you can see alot better when feeding your wires in that area. There are just 2 torx screws per cup holder to remove once you got the trim off. Picture below shows the cup holder with the screw removed.



There was only 2 I need to put through there, 1 was the Constant 12V supply for the stereo and the other was the microphone.



For installing the Microphone

First things first is to remove the 2 sunvisor clips that hold it in place. there is a hidden Torx T-20 screw behind a flap. You will need to remove both of these to allow for the roofliner to pop down without creasing it. so you can remove the roof center console with the lights in.

Get a small flathead screwdriver and pop the cover off to expose the screw and remove.



Once the both sunvisor clips are removed you can then pull the head liner down and press these two silver clips in to release the light unit. please support this when releasing the clips, as there are wires going into it.



Once this is out, unclip the connectors going into the back of the unit. I did this so I could work better with it. I didn't have a microphone in the overhead console. BMW put a blanking plate in there which can be removed by using your small screwdriver and pressing the clip in to release the blank and pull it out. The shot below shows where this blank is housed, but removed and the new mic fitted.



I then ran the mic cable down the roofliner and down the left pillar, the wire is thin enough just to tuck behind the A piller cover and then run behind the glove box. There is a plastic cover at the bottom of the A Pillar, adjacent to the glove box which pops of and you can feed the wire here and behind the glove box into the center console where the new stereo is going in.


VIDEO IN MOTION BYPASS

So this particular head unit, I only had to ground the parking brake wire to get it to work. (I bought the actual one for $20 of a guy, but then realised I didn't need it.

When you remove the original stereo there are 2 8mm bolts that you remove and didn't require them to go back in for the new stereo. I saw that there was metal to metal contact which equals ground so used this. I stripped back quite a bit of the insulation and just coiled the bare wires round the bolt and screwed it back in.



CANBUS BOX

The dynavin tutorial has a different box with an LED, the connects 2 kit doesn't, so I just plug it in. Now there is a wierd thing here you have to connect the 8 pin connector from the harness over the box from the same loom. seemed a bit odd to me but it works.




Placement of Looms/Connectors

I put the Large ISO connector and the Canbus box to the glove box side as there was a large void where these fitted quite nicely and out of the way. I then coiled the rest of the loom and other connector(black one for the stereo side) to go in the drivers side void.

Connects 2 Stereo brackets and Fitting

Well this was a little puzzle, the destructions that come with the connects 2 kit aren't worth the paper they are printed on. Firstly you don't need the Head Unit cage that comes with the HU. Just use the screws and screw these 2 plastic brackets onto the sides of the HU. They are labelled left and right. And should be mounted like in the picture below. There are actually only 2 screws that hold the lot in place.







CLIMATE CONTROL TRIMMING

Ok so everyone says this needs trimming, but why??? I just want to show you why, for those that haven't done this yet.




And that is pretty much it.
Hi Cheezie . 2 questions on this install.

1. why did you need an additional 15a power supply? Was this not taken from the connects harness to OE head unit loom?

2. Where did you take your speed pulse from? I am installing a Kenwood DNX unit - car looks like this right now. Happy holsName:  DSC_0303.jpg
Views: 604
Size:  333.7 KB. Cheers also for this post. Been very helpful.

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