Mobridge Bluetooth kit using factory PCM 2.1 Porsche navigation radio
The remote car starter in this Porsche Cayenne is actually activated from the factory remote by pressing the lock button 3 times. The Mobridge Bluetooth kit features handsfree calling and A2DP audio streaming in lieu of the factory CD Changer.
This Porsche Cayenne is Remote Start Ready and yours probably is too
We get a lot of Porsche Cayenne’s in our shop upgrading the in dash navigation and audio system, but this was actually the first time I had a Porsche Cayenne in for a remote car starter. I had to do a bit of research to see if the remote starter was possible, but it didn’t take me too long to figure out that it was. Believe it or not, this car is actually Remote Start Ready.
A lot of newer vehicles are in fact remote start ready and we do quite a few of our remote start installations using this new remote start ready technology. It requires less parts, less wiring and less labor. Even so, it was still a pretty technical installation and not for the faint of heart.
Prior to October 1st 2014, all that was needed for parts was a Directed Electronics DB-ALL2 and 556UW. For this installation, those are the parts we used – I just made sure we flashed the software onto our DB-ALL2 before Directed Electronics made their changes effective. As of October 1st 2014, Directed Electronics eliminated this “Lock Three Times to Start – RSR” software on their DB-ALL2 in favor of selling more parts (more parts meaning more costly to you and more profitable for the manufacturer). This “Lock Three Times to Start ” option will be available using their new 4×10 module. However, there is still the option to use a DB-ALL2 and 556UW along with an additional remote and antenna kit.
With the DB-ALL2, a 556UW and a lot of installation expertise, we successfully enabled the remote starter in a Porsche Cayenne by simply pressing the lock button 3 times on the factory remote
I kind of like the idea of the additional remote for this particular vehicle, because the factory remote is inoperative when the engine is running, however the proximity function of the key is still active. With the one button remote kit, we can program the remote to start the car with one press and then with more one additional press, it will unlock the doors. This remote also provides additional range over the factory key fob, however for this particular client, additional range was not necessary and thus we used the OEM key fob.
This year I attempted to make it to the New York auto show with press passes. I actually managed to acquire the press passes, but unfortunately I couldn’t make it down during press days. I did however, get a chance to go today and roam among the public at the Jacob Javits Center. Looking at all the new cars from Ford, Dodge, Jeep, BMW, Audi, Mercedes, Toyota, Lexus, Honda and more, I quickly realized something. Almost nothing was new! At least to me.
As a mobile electronics specialist operating a retail store in Fairfield County, Connecticut, our shop sees a wide variety of clients and many of them are driving brand new cars. Sometimes we’re the first stop after driving off the lot. We also happen to do a lot of wholesale work for local car dealerships, often working on a brand new car before it is delivered to the customer. After seeing so many cars today, that I’ve already seen and know well, I realized I take for granted the kind of exposure I get to new cars working in this industry.
Having said that, I still walked away from the show with valuable insight on the convenient technologies that OEM manufacturers are now offering to consumers. The majority of these car manufacturers are creating better and better touch screen control centers with advanced navigation, app integration, multiple camera systems for driver safety and they’re offering all of that on much larger, brighter, and vibrant touch screens than ever before. Even Mercedes has been upgraded their dinky command control screen to an acceptable 7″ screen (it’s still not touch screen though). The OEM offerings are definitely going to give the aftermarket industry a run for its money. I attribute the OEM competitive edge to the car manufacturer’s seemingly bottomless research and development pockets, something the aftermarket manufacturers just don’t have.
I was disappointed that most of the vehicles on display did not have accessory or battery power on, or the option to turn it on for demonstration purposes. As a result, I was unable to actually see or use most of the features that I wanted to see. It wasn’t a total waste of time however, I did get some pretty nice pictures of some pretty cool cars and I enjoyed a slice with hubby at John’s Pizza on West 44th. Enjoy.
This thing is just so cool looking. Maybe Alpine is on to something with those Blue lights.
This interesting new paint concept for BMW first debuted in select 2011 M3’s. Their Frozen series paint options were prevalent at the show……even at the Mercedes and Audi booth.
Mercedes was actually the first manufacturer to offer such a paint finish. Introduced by Mercedes in 2010, they call it MAGNO Matte.
This vehicle caught my eye. This is the first time I ever saw or heard of a Spyker C8. Looks pretty cool. Also looks really expensive.
Looking for a high quality aftermarket car audio sound system while maintaining the factory appearance in your vehicle?
As car manufacturer’s design more and more complex vehicle interiors, it can become more difficult for integrating aftermarket stereo components to improve sound quality. It doesn’t have to be difficult though. Thanks to products like Audison’s Bit One, there are excellent options for integrating high fidelity audio components into an OEM system in a clean and seamless way.
In the past, it’s always been an option to upgrade speakers, add an amplifier or amplifiers along with a subwoofer to a stock system without changing the stock head unit. But this is kind of like taking 2 steps forward and one step back. You’ll always be limited to the sound quality and output of the stock stereo. Not only that, your only option for connecting these components this way are through speaker level connections, rather than RCA cables (which is the cleaner way to integrate amplifiers).
Most stock stereos are self attenuating. The manufacturer doesn’t want you to blow up the stock speakers, so internally they’ve engineered their stereos to adjust output as you crank the volume knob. This is not the case for every manufacturer, but it is especially true in most “premium” or amplified audio systems. You turn the volume up and may find that your bass and mid range levels seem to stay the same, but only treble and upper end frequencies are increased.
So the solution has always been to start with a good clean source, something with a high voltage pre-amp that will allow you to easily install an aftermarket amplifier, integrating with the pre-amp through clean, high quality RCA cables. Well, what if I told you, you could do better than that with going the OEM integration route.
First, let’s look at the traditional set up: replace head unit, replace speakers, add amplifiers and subwoofer. With this option, we have to wire up and install a new aftermarket head unit. Then, from the preamp of the new head unit, we need to run RCA cables to the location of the new amplifier. We also need to run power and ground wire for the aftermarket amplifiers as well as speaker wire from the aftermarket speakers to the aftermarket amplifiers. That’s a lot of wiring. Throughout this wiring it can be easy to pickup interference noise from things like the power wire, computers in the car or radio frequency interference emitted from the amplifiers themselves.
If we look at some of the more advanced audio systems coming from car manufacturer’s, you will see they only have one conversion and that is at the stock amplifier. Take a look, for example, at these 3 car manufacturers. Audi, BMW and Porsche. All of these manufacturers have platforms for many of their stereos that operate on the MOST bus system. MOST stands for Media Oriented Systems Transport. It’s a fiber optic network that communicates audio, video, voice and data signals to multiple components. This means there is one optical cable running from the head unit to the amp where it is then converted to analog. That’s it. No RCA’s, no speaker wire, no power wire, no chance for audio interference or audio degradation. From there it goes to speaker wire and then to the car stereo speakers.
Fiber optics in cars? You would think this would make it even more difficult to interface aftermarket car audio products. At first it was, but thanks to company’s like Mobridge, there are some pretty cool ways to add aftermarket amps and speakers that will make wiring this type of set up easier than a traditional aftermarket audio system. Mobridge makes a digital preamp for select MOST bus systems. The digital preamp allows you to remove the stock amplifier and connect an aftermarket amplifier. This preamp will the convert the fiber optic output to an analog RCA output, which can then go to aftermarket amplifiers and then, ultimately, aftermarket speakers. This means you can maintain your cars fiber optic system, maintain the stock head unit and appearance, but change the stock amp to a higher quality aftermarket amp that can then power higher quality aftermarket speakers. It’s an easy way to upgrade your audio system, but maintain the stock look. Since they’re very little wiring involved, it’s also just as easy to convert it back to original equipment.
But wait, it gets even cooler. Throw in an Audison amplifier, like a new Voce series amp, and you gain a digital input at the amp. That means you can stay digital from the head unit to the amp. With fiber optic connections, you can eliminate the need for RCA cables which means you’ll have even cleaner sound quality and no chance of introducing any type of noise or interference into the audio system.
So that’s pretty awesome right? OEM look, aftermarket sound with minimal wiring required, but it gets even better. Hook it all up to an Audison Bit One with an optical toslink cable and you now have more control than most will know what to do with. The Bit One is an amazing piece of equipment all on its own, but using it in this type of setup means you’ll not only have a pure, clean and noise free signal, but you’ll have a completely customizable and correctable audio system.
The Bit One supplies car audio enthusiasts with an 8 channel output, a 31 band EQ per source, per channel, digital time alignment and a whole lot more. What will this do for you? Let’s say you have a stock 6 channel speaker system and you want a full audio upgrade in your BMW with a MOST system. After having your professional installer install your high quality aftermarket speakers, aftermarket amps, subwoofer, your digital preamp (if not using a Voce amp with digital in and out) and your Bit One, he’ll need to complete the Bit One tuning process.
The Bit One will supply your installer with a USB connection to hook up to a lap top. It also comes with tuning software. The installer can then measure, from where your head sits in your car, the distance to each speaker in the car. Using the Bit One tuning software, he can then calibrate how much to delay each speaker by milliseconds so that each speaker hits your ears at exactly the same time. This process will completely center your sound stage right to where you’re sitting. When done correctly, you can’t pin point exactly where the sound is coming from; it envelops and surrounds you. This is especially helpful in bringing the subwoofer up (acoustically) to where you’re sitting in your car.
The 31 band EQ allows a knowledgeable installer to further correct and perfect your audio system. By playing pink noise (all frequencies) and measuring the frequency response with a real time analyzer (also known as an RTA) he can see with his eyes where there is too much of one frequency, too little of another, and adjust those frequencies accordingly to provide smooth and pleasing sound reproduction.
As car manufacturers improve and create more technologically advanced systems in their vehicles, you will see more innovative solutions in the aftermarket industry to utilize and integrate with these systems. It was originally thought by many in the mobile electronics industry that these types of changes in OEM operating systems would kill the car audio industry. It’s been quite the opposite. For those willing to learn about and embrace new technology, the possibilities for expansion in the industry become limitless.
What mobile electronic innovations have you been impressed with? What do you think has been the greatest innovation in car audio in the past 10 years? I’d love to hear your feedback. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more innovations in the industry.
Looking for an easy OEM upgrade? Take a look at JL Audio’s all new Stealthmod.
In my last JL Audio post, I briefly mentioned a new product from JL Audio, called the Stealthmod. For all you car audio enthusiasts out there that own a Kia Soul, Chevy Camaro Convertible or a BMW X5, read on. Don’t own one of these cars? That’s okay, keep reading, JL will be adding more models soon.
JL Audio is no stranger to OEM system upgrades. They’ve been offering easy OEM sound upgrades for over 15 years. Their first Stealthbox hit the market in 1996. 9 years later, JL Audio released the CleanSweep, a sophisticated DSP processor that eliminates frequency errors that occur in factory audio systems. This brings us to the newest integration breakthrough from JL Audio, the Stealthmod.
The Stealthmod is what lies between simply adding a Stealthbox to an OEM audio system and doing a complete overhaul with the CleanSweep. Currently the Stealthmod is available for the Chevy Camaro Convertible, Kia Soul and (very soon) the BMW X5. JL Audio has taken the guess work out of upgrading your stock system.
After months of research and development, JL Audio is proud to offer a complete OEM upgrade kit that will include:
-Component speaker upgrades
-System amplifier with remote level control
-Wiring (power, speaker and signal)
-Brackets, adaptors and hardware
-Detailed installation and setup instructions
JL Audio has thought of everything with these kits. I was shocked at CES to see that these kits are shipped with every wire you need for the installation, pre-cut, down to the exact length of wire required for the application. They also include every nut, bolt, screw, fastener and bracket you will need. JL Audio has always offered excellent quality products at extremely reasonable prices and I think you will agree that these Stealthmods, like most JL Audio products, are a great value.
Prices and equipment will range from vehicle to vehicle. The Kia Soul Stealthmod includes a pair of C2-650x’s, the 3 channel XD 500/3 and a vehicle specific Stealthbox housing a 12″ W0. This system can be yours for $1449.95.
If you own a Chevy Camaro Convertble, your Stealthmod will include a pair of C3-650 convertible speakers, the 5 channel XD 700/5 and a custom Stealthbox enclosure housing two 10″ W1 subwoofers for only $2399.95.
For the BMW X5 drivers out there, your Stealthmod (with stock premium audio system) will include a set of C5 tweeters and passive crossovers, the 5 channel XD 700/5 and a Stealthbox housing a 10″ W3. The BMW X5 Stealthmod is offered for X5’s with the Harman Kardon Logic 7 system and will be sold for only $1899.95. JL Audio Black BMW X5 Stealthmod Subwoofer Upgrade – 94518/ Contains One 10W3v3-2 Subwoofer/ Five-Channel Amplifier To Power The Front Speaker System And Filter Its Frequency Ranges For Increased Performance/ Stealthbox Installs Beneath The Cargo Area Floor In The Passenger-Side Rear Corner Of The Spare Tire Well/ Offers Dramatic Improvements In Low-Frequency Extension And Quality/ Black Finish
Due to the nature of these all inclusive kits, the installation will take a fraction of the time that a traditional custom OEM audio upgrade would take. Without the need to plan and/or fabricate anything, the installation of these kits will be a breeze and thus cut down on installation costs as well.
Always thinking ahead, JL Audio is making great strides in OEM integration. For more information on your Stealthmod, along with specific application details, visit JL Audio’s website. Have you installed a JL Audio Stealthmod yet? If so, please tell us your experience.