Join Date: Oct 2010
My Ride: 2004 325i
Thanks Jmanscotch, I did end up doing quite a bit of homework on what all as involved with the retrofit. I had heard nightmarish stories of needing to run harnesses from the trunk to the dash and all kinds of craziness. Well I did end up finding the Dynavin, which looks exactly like the OEM Nav in the E46's, from a vendor on eBay for $599 obo with 1yr warranty.
I'd like to make clear that, at least the unit I got, you don't need to buy anything else, not even the Falkara cable. IT WAS ENTIRELY PLUG AND PLAY. It took about three hours total time, and the most difficult part for me was running the GPS antenna in the roof without interfering with the sunroof mechanisms.
The first thing you'll want to do is obviously disconnect the negative battery terminal, just in case of any "oopsies" that may occour along the way, and so you don't get a face full of airbag when you're running the GPS wire behind the dash.
Next, you pull the trim located below the passenger side airbag as well as the trim piece above the radio off, simply by prying it up gently with a plastic putty knife or something to that effect. Remove the two screws that secure the A/C vent cover and the radio unit in place, and remove the vent cover. Pry out the radio and disconnect the 17 pin connector as well as the antenna wire, and remove the radio completely.
Next youll want to push the climate control panel out from the back side. Just apply controlled pressure toward yourself and it'll pop right out. Remove the four electrical connections plugged into it, and place the control panel somewhere out of your immediate work area.
Next you'll have to push out the storage compartment, again from the backside to expose two of the four screws that hold that bracket/housing in place. From this point I prefer to put the car's shifter knob into "D" (if automatic trans obviously) to accomidate the space that'll be helpful when removing the ashtray/ storage compartment bracket. Then you remove the shifter knob by giving a good firm pull upward, and remove the boot surrounding it. This will give you access to the remaining two screws necesscary to remove the shift boot trim where your window switches are located.
From this point you can remove the ashtray bracket, and you should have a pretty ugly and empty certer console area. I ran the GPS wire into the roof by removing the maplight fixture, the passenger side sun-visor light, the sun-visor itself and the passenger side "A" pillar, and fishing it through along that path.Once I got the wire through the pillar, I just removed the passenger side vent and dash piece that covers the passenger's airbag. Then I just fished it over to the stereo wiring harness area, and removed all the slack in the wire along the way. Then I just put the ceiling pieces, pillar, dash, and vent back in place. Hopefully that paints a pretty decent picture of where I ran my wire, but to be honest, I'm not sure it has to be in the roof so you may be able to save yourself some time.
Next thing was to remove the smaller (10 pin) connector from the stereo harness (BIG SQUARE 17 pin) itself by removing the blue clip and just push the wire aside. Now you connect the Dynavin connector to your factory connector and secure it by pressing down firmly on the top. (important note: coming out of the Dynavin's main harness, are a few cables that run to a box labeled "SY8." make sure you plug the matching connection into the other end of that SY8 box and into the black cable labeled "IR" This connection will ensure you do not lose your steering wheel control function. I learned this the hard way, and had to re-do the damn' thing. Also, I went ahead and took the single red "safety parking break" wire coming from the back of the Dynavin and spliced it into the 16 ga Black ground wire coming from the unit itself. (This may be ill advised and it is illegal to watch DVD's while driving, but whatever, do what you can afford I guess).
There is also a different style antenna wire than the one the HK business uses, but the Dynavin comes with the adaptor, just make sure you hook it up if you want am/fm. From there i just plastic wrapped all my unused RCA's together and kind of shoved em in next to the airbag. Fitting all the wires and new connections in there without jamming the crap out of em was kind of a pain, but hey, it is what it is.
Finally, I put in my climate control / ashtray bracket that I got for like 68$ from pelican parts, and plugged everything back in and put it all back together. I'm sure there's a few small details I left out, but it really was a pretty simple install.
Downside to it all is that the Dynavin manual is written in HORRIBLY translated English, and doesn't go into any ammount of detail about the wiring, or installation process; much less, setup.
Upside; IT ROCKS and it's only $700 bucks. You'll have to go through and establish GPS antenna signal , and bluetooth,for handsfree and all that, but it's a pretty cool unit overall. Well worth the money in my opinion. So for anybody out there looking to retrofit your E46 with Nav, and you hear all these stories about $2000 bucks. Blow it off man cuz it's BS. You don't need any 300$ harness from bimmernav or any other vendor that requires running cables from front to back, or any of that crap! The only guy I would reccommend talking to is jeff and he's on here. I'm sure there are others who know the deal, I just haven't spoken to em' or read their posts, but Jeff is probably one of the most knowledgable on the Dynavin and E46's audio systems in general.
Hope this can help someone out there or at least allow someone to breathe a sigh of relief when you find out that the OEM NAV "look" doesn't have a $2000 price tag. Thanks-
Last edited by 84matthewd; 11-16-2010 at 06:46 PM.
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