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Old 01-25-2013, 02:55 PM   #1
Spaniardstud
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Nexus 7 In Dash

I'm thinking of putting a nexus 7 tablet in my dash but dont want to lose my stearing wheel controls for the radio. I've seen this blog http://www.bmdroid.co.nz/ which looks good but I was thinking instead of doing what this person did with the oem radio I would put the radio in the glovebox. What do you guys think?

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Old 01-25-2013, 03:08 PM   #2
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Old 01-25-2013, 04:05 PM   #3
Edgar3498
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This is awesome

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Old 01-25-2013, 05:53 PM   #4
PainBreak
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Originally Posted by Spaniardstud View Post
I'm thinking of putting a nexus 7 tablet in my dash but dont want to lose my stearing wheel controls for the radio. I've seen this blog http://www.bmdroid.co.nz/ which looks good but I was thinking instead of doing what this person did with the oem radio I would put the radio in the glovebox. What do you guys think?
If you'll notice, there's no CANBUS adapter that works, and he's "Developing his own."

I'm going to guess that it didn't really come to fruition.
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Old 01-25-2013, 07:39 PM   #5
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Old 01-26-2013, 02:19 PM   #6
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Old 01-26-2013, 02:46 PM   #7
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Do you really need the radio though?


I've always wanted to do this:
- Buy a used OEM dvd/nav head unit
- Buy a rootable 7" tablet with USB host mode
- Remove the screen from the oem head unit and replace it with the tablet
- Use an Arduino board (or similar) to connect the buttons on the OEM unit and the iBus steering wheel buttons to the tablet

This guy is doing something similar regarding the iBus thing:

http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum....php?t=1798514

That being said, The infamous Enco B046 unit seems to be doing it for me, especially after root. You might want to consider it after all.
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Old 01-29-2013, 08:11 AM   #8
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Old 04-29-2014, 09:09 PM   #9
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This website is selling Nexus 7 installation kits:

www.ironlight.us


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Old 04-30-2014, 12:40 PM   #10
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Spaniard,

I'm not sure if you ever took on this project, but I just installed a tablet in my dash and moved the stock head unit to the glovebox. It wasn't really too tough. You just need to extend all the wires. Also, I had to order the antenna wire extension (fakra "A" connectors) from China, but it got here quickly as was under $10. I will be doing a full write-up of my install in the near future.

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Old 05-05-2014, 12:31 PM   #11
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Spaniard,

I'm not sure if you ever took on this project, but I just installed a tablet in my dash and moved the stock head unit to the glovebox.
Out of curiosity, why did you keep the head unit?

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Old 05-05-2014, 03:45 PM   #12
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Out of curiosity, why did you keep the head unit?
I considered a LOT of different options for incorporating my tablet as a head unit. Ultimately, using the tablet, my stock head unit, and an Enfig bluetooth adapter was the cheapest way to get all of the features I wanted, including the following:

- I wanted to keep am/fm radio functionality. I live in a rural area where we don't have great 4g network speed with any cell phone provider. Thus, even when I tether my tablet to my phone, I can't run spotify/pandora/iheartradio, etc. I also kept the cd functionality, although I rarely use that.

- I wanted to keep steering wheel control functionality. With my tablet hooked up to the stereo via bluetooth (through the Enfig adapter), I can control volume and next and previous track when playing music on the tablet.

- I wanted a simple setup. The Enfig adapter was the only component (other than the tablet) that I had to buy. I don't need a separate amplifier, isolators, adapters, connectors, etc. It is just simply plugging in the Enfig adapter to the stereo and connecting the tablet via bluetooth. All media plays through the stereo via the bluetooth connection. The sound quality seems amazing to me (admittedly, I'm no audiophile).

- I wanted a good hands-free calling system. The Enfig adapter handles this as well. I can connect my tablet to the stereo via bluetooth media and my phone to the stereo via bluetooth phone audio. The "tablet talk" app then lets me pair my tablet and phone together. The result is that I can make or answer a call from my tablet and it will pause whatever other media is currently playing on the tablet.

I know there are various different solutions to address all of the foregoing, but keeping my stock unit and using an Enfig adapter was far and away the easiest and cheapest solution.
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Old 05-05-2014, 06:07 PM   #13
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This is what my in dash install looks like on the screen. A friend sent me a link to one he found on the internet and I made some custom icons in photoshop to make it work for me. Ignore that app drawer on the second pic I only needed that for a few seconds.

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Old 05-08-2014, 09:43 AM   #14
Danoff
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BMWMac,

Thanks for your post. I am very interested in this particular subject, and I like that you have a different take on it. What I'm about to write might sound like it's attacking you, but it's definitely not. What works for you is what works for you - so don't take any of the below as a suggestion that I think you should change anything. I suppose I'm just thinking out load.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
I considered a LOT of different options for incorporating my tablet as a head unit. Ultimately, using the tablet, my stock head unit, and an Enfig bluetooth adapter was the cheapest way to get all of the features I wanted, including the following:

- I wanted to keep am/fm radio functionality. I live in a rural area where we don't have great 4g network speed with any cell phone provider. Thus, even when I tether my tablet to my phone, I can't run spotify/pandora/iheartradio, etc. I also kept the cd functionality, although I rarely use that.
It's not a bad solution to keep AM/FM, but I wonder if it's really worth it. I mean you could have the tablet pre-download podcasts or AM/FM feeds or even google music streaming playlists prior to your daily drive (if park your car within wifi range of your house). If you want traffic updates from your radio station, that's not really going to work with a delayed feed, but then you could get traffic from the tablet itself. I suppose if you wanted breaking news during your drive that wouldn't work... but that seems awfully specific.

I dunno, I'm still not quite seeing it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
- I wanted to keep steering wheel control functionality. With my tablet hooked up to the stereo via bluetooth (through the Enfig adapter), I can control volume and next and previous track when playing music on the tablet.
Do you change your volume much? I don't. I change it so infrequently that I moved my volume control off of the main homescreen. I had mine configured to keep the steering wheel controls working, but I really didn't like having two volume controls. I suppose you could just not use the volume on your tablet, but then your passengers can't change volume either. Maybe that's a good thing, but you also can't see your volume level anywhere.

A lot of people are really concerned about giving up the steering volume controls, but I personally haven't missed them. I never really liked the ones for the BMW anyway. My infiniti has better steering wheel controls, maybe I would miss those more.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
- I wanted a simple setup. The Enfig adapter was the only component (other than the tablet) that I had to buy. I don't need a separate amplifier, isolators, adapters, connectors, etc. It is just simply plugging in the Enfig adapter to the stereo and connecting the tablet via bluetooth. All media plays through the stereo via the bluetooth connection. The sound quality seems amazing to me (admittedly, I'm no audiophile).
I'm not totally sure I would consider having a radio in your glovebox simpler than having an amp buried behind your dash.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
- I wanted a good hands-free calling system. The Enfig adapter handles this as well. I can connect my tablet to the stereo via bluetooth media and my phone to the stereo via bluetooth phone audio. The "tablet talk" app then lets me pair my tablet and phone together. The result is that I can make or answer a call from my tablet and it will pause whatever other media is currently playing on the tablet.
Yea, this would probably have been a big factor for me if I had not tried the bluetooth headset. When I was first considering this system I was really wanting to avoid the headset. You have to charge it, you wear it all the time - it's just no good.

Tablet talk is great though isn't it? It allows me to leave the headset off while I'm not using it. So I don't have to wear it all the time and I don't have to charge it (I think I'm going on a half year on 1 charge). And that's just not something that folks are familiar with.

The plus of the headset is that people hear me a lot better than they did when I used the in-car mic and speakers, and I don't have to broadcast my phone conversation to everyone in the car, and I can take my phone conversation with me without interruption when I exit the car.

I imagine one day android will offer a software patch to allow us to use the tablet as a headset - at which point calling can happen through the tablet kinda like you have it set up. If that happens though, I kinda wonder if I go to it. It would eliminate the need to put on the earpiece when I got a call, and it would be one less thing to keep track of in the car. But I really feel like I'd be giving something up too. In all honesty it would be a tough call.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
I know there are various different solutions to address all of the foregoing, but keeping my stock unit and using an Enfig adapter was far and away the easiest and cheapest solution.
I'm glad you found a good solution. It sounds like you have everything you want.
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Old 05-08-2014, 11:49 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Danoff View Post
BMWMac,

Thanks for your post. I am very interested in this particular subject, and I like that you have a different take on it. What I'm about to write might sound like it's attacking you, but it's definitely not. What works for you is what works for you - so don't take any of the below as a suggestion that I think you should change anything. I suppose I'm just thinking out load.
No worries. It doesn't come off as an attack. I also hoped that you didn't feel like I was trying to persuade people not to go with your setup. I was only trying to let other users know of other options that have worked for people.

Quote:
It's not a bad solution to keep AM/FM, but I wonder if it's really worth it. I mean you could have the tablet pre-download podcasts or AM/FM feeds or even google music streaming playlists prior to your daily drive (if park your car within wifi range of your house). If you want traffic updates from your radio station, that's not really going to work with a delayed feed, but then you could get traffic from the tablet itself. I suppose if you wanted breaking news during your drive that wouldn't work... but that seems awfully specific.

I dunno, I'm still not quite seeing it.
Keeping AM/FM stereo was big for me. I do download a lot of podcasts, but there are honestly a lot of days when I'm so busy, I don't get a chance. My daily commute is about an hour each way. I go through a lot of audio. I find myself still listening to the radio quite often. I didn't even know about downloading google music streaming playlists. Is it similar to spotify where you have to pay an extra fee for that feature?

Quote:
Do you change your volume much? I don't. I change it so infrequently that I moved my volume control off of the main homescreen. I had mine configured to keep the steering wheel controls working, but I really didn't like having two volume controls. I suppose you could just not use the volume on your tablet, but then your passengers can't change volume either. Maybe that's a good thing, but you also can't see your volume level anywhere.

A lot of people are really concerned about giving up the steering volume controls, but I personally haven't missed them. I never really liked the ones for the BMW anyway. My infiniti has better steering wheel controls, maybe I would miss those more.
Keeping steering wheel controls was probably my #1 reason to keep the stock head unit. I'm constantly adjusting the volume. For example, when a call comes in via bluetooth audio, I almost always have to adjust the volume. Skipping to next track on the steering wheel is also nice. I've got an old truck without any steering wheel controls and I'm so used to steering wheel controls, that when I drive it, I find it a hassle to have to reach for the stereo to adjust the volume.

Quote:
I'm not totally sure I would consider having a radio in your glovebox simpler than having an amp buried behind your dash.
The ironlight kit seems like a good setup and the good thing is that you buy it as a kit. I didn't see anything like that when I was doing mine. Most people were either having to buy a lot of different components or destroy their stock unit to hide it behind the tablet. That being said, for the reasons I've laid out, I think I still prefer my setup of keeping my stock head unit as part of the system.

Quote:
Yea, this would probably have been a big factor for me if I had not tried the bluetooth headset. When I was first considering this system I was really wanting to avoid the headset. You have to charge it, you wear it all the time - it's just no good.

Tablet talk is great though isn't it? It allows me to leave the headset off while I'm not using it. So I don't have to wear it all the time and I don't have to charge it (I think I'm going on a half year on 1 charge). And that's just not something that folks are familiar with.

The plus of the headset is that people hear me a lot better than they did when I used the in-car mic and speakers, and I don't have to broadcast my phone conversation to everyone in the car, and I can take my phone conversation with me without interruption when I exit the car.

I imagine one day android will offer a software patch to allow us to use the tablet as a headset - at which point calling can happen through the tablet kinda like you have it set up. If that happens though, I kinda wonder if I go to it. It would eliminate the need to put on the earpiece when I got a call, and it would be one less thing to keep track of in the car. But I really feel like I'd be giving something up too. In all honesty it would be a tough call.
I've never worn a bluetooth earpiece. I just don't like them. The broadcasting throughout the car isn't an issue for me. I'm alone in my car 99.99% of the time. You're probably correct about better conversation quality, but IMO the tablet/phone/bluetooth adapter setup is really sweet. Call comes in, I hit "answer" on the tablet and just start having a conversation.

Quote:
I'm glad you found a good solution. It sounds like you have everything you want.
I really am happy with my setup. Really the only unresolved issue is changing my stereo mode back and forth from radio to tablet (via bluetooth audio). I have to open my glovebox, lean over, and push the "mode" button. Kind of a pain, and probably a bit dangerous while driving. I've done a bit of research to see if I could program one of the steering wheel buttons to change the mode, but haven't found any solutions yet. Ideas, anyone?
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:27 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
Keeping AM/FM stereo was big for me. I do download a lot of podcasts, but there are honestly a lot of days when I'm so busy, I don't get a chance. My daily commute is about an hour each way. I go through a lot of audio. I find myself still listening to the radio quite often. I didn't even know about downloading google music streaming playlists. Is it similar to spotify where you have to pay an extra fee for that feature?
So what I do is I set up big google music playlists and manage them on my desktop. I have the tablet set up to auto-sync the changes in those to the tablet, so as soon as it has an internet connection it starts updating to any changes I made on the computer. That's great if you're happy listening to music you own...

Pandora and spotify require an internet connection in real time. But if you have a google music subscription, you have access to a practically infinite supply of music, and they'll auto-generate playlists for you. I believe you can tell your tablet to download an auto-generated playlist (say, overnight in the car). It doesn't cost any more than the subscription, but the music disappears if you stop paying google. I honestly have not tried it, but my understanding is that you can save as much music to the tablet as you want.

You can also set up automated routines to download podcasts as soon as they come out so that they're just waiting for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
Keeping steering wheel controls was probably my #1 reason to keep the stock head unit. I'm constantly adjusting the volume. For example, when a call comes in via bluetooth audio, I almost always have to adjust the volume.
Interesting. I wonder why that happens.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
Skipping to next track on the steering wheel is also nice. I've got an old truck without any steering wheel controls and I'm so used to steering wheel controls, that when I drive it, I find it a hassle to have to reach for the stereo to adjust the volume.
If you're adjusting volume a lot, I can see that. Skipping tracks is not bad with gestures though. Not like your old truck I would imagine because you don't have to hit a particular button.

Last edited by Danoff; 05-08-2014 at 12:28 PM.
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Old 05-08-2014, 12:56 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Danoff View Post
So what I do is I set up big google music playlists and manage them on my desktop. I have the tablet set up to auto-sync the changes in those to the tablet, so as soon as it has an internet connection it starts updating to any changes I made on the computer. That's great if you're happy listening to music you own...

Pandora and spotify require an internet connection in real time. But if you have a google music subscription, you have access to a practically infinite supply of music, and they'll auto-generate playlists for you. I believe you can tell your tablet to download an auto-generated playlist (say, overnight in the car). It doesn't cost any more than the subscription, but the music disappears if you stop paying google. I honestly have not tried it, but my understanding is that you can save as much music to the tablet as you want.

You can also set up automated routines to download podcasts as soon as they come out so that they're just waiting for you.



Interesting. I wonder why that happens.



If you're adjusting volume a lot, I can see that. Skipping tracks is not bad with gestures though. Not like your old truck I would imagine because you don't have to hit a particular button.
Yep, you can store as much as you want, there is no limit.

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Old 05-09-2014, 02:19 PM   #18
monolithic
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I'm considering the Ironlight route. Two options I wasn't sure about was answer phone calls (Evidently Tablet Talk takes care of that?) and back-up cam.

If I went the Ironlight route, what would I need to purchase to have back-up cam functionality?

As an overview, the previous owner on my E46 installed some crappy, single-din, no-name, Chinese pop-out nav unit. I have no idea what he did to the wiring, but I assume I would have to purchase an HVAC relocation kit as well?

Am I moving in the correct direction with my thinking in terms of what you two accomplished with your installs?

Thanks,

M.
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Old 05-09-2014, 06:02 PM   #19
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I'm considering the Ironlight route. Two options I wasn't sure about was answer phone calls (Evidently Tablet Talk takes care of that?) and back-up cam.
TabletTalk is simply an app that will connect your tablet and phone. Essentially the tablet works as an interface for your phone, but the call doesn't actually go through the tablet. Thus, you will need some type of "hands-free" system.

I believe with the Ironlight setup (correct me if I'm wrong), Danoff uses a bluetooth earpiece (connected to his phone). So when a call comes in, he puts in his earpiece and then hits "answer" on his tablet. He then speaks and hears the conversation through the bluetooth earpiece.

With my setup, I have the Enfig bluetooth adapter connected to my stock stereo (all in my glovebox). The bluetooth adapter has two different bluetooth components, (i) bluetooth media, and (ii) bluetooth phone. My tablet is connected to the stock stereo via bluetooth media, and my phone is connected to the stereo via bluetooth phone. (My phone and tablet are also connected via tablet talk). So when I make or answer a call on my tablet (which is just an interface for my phone), the voice comes through my speakers and my voice is picked up on a microphone that is routed to the stock microphone location in the headliner in front of the sunroof.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monolithic View Post
If I went the Ironlight route, what would I need to purchase to have back-up cam functionality?
I have not thoroughly researched this as I don't have a back-up camera. But I believe the answer would be the same regardless of what tablet install setup you use. You need to buy a bluetooth or wifi back-up camera to pair with your tablet. I think most will have a recommendation for an accompanying app. I don't know if this can be setup to automatically launch the backup camera app when your car is in reverse or what. Again, not much experience or research here.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monolithic View Post
As an overview, the previous owner on my E46 installed some crappy, single-din, no-name, Chinese pop-out nav unit. I have no idea what he did to the wiring, but I assume I would have to purchase an HVAC relocation kit as well?
I think to achieve the best possible look, you would want to get the relocation kit. That being said, the applicable one for my car was the most expensive (I think almost $100) and I decided to make my own modifications to the existing bracket to make the HVAC controls fit very snug and look good. Look at post #10 in this thread: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...ghlight=bmwmac

Quote:
Originally Posted by monolithic View Post
Am I moving in the correct direction with my thinking in terms of what you two accomplished with your installs?
I really need to take the time to write up my DIY (maybe this weekend), but I have really enjoyed having the tablet as a head unit. Gives you so many possibilities. Whether you go with ironlight or some other setup, I strongly recommend it. Plus if you have an aftermarket stereo already, the tablet install will make it look 1000 times better.

Last edited by BMWMac; 05-09-2014 at 06:03 PM.
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Old 05-13-2014, 02:18 PM   #20
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I have not thoroughly researched this as I don't have a back-up camera. But I believe the answer would be the same regardless of what tablet install setup you use. You need to buy a bluetooth or wifi back-up camera to pair with your tablet. I think most will have a recommendation for an accompanying app. I don't know if this can be setup to automatically launch the backup camera app when your car is in reverse or what. Again, not much experience or research here.
I don't have a backup camera either, I'm sure what you're saying could be done - launching the app as soon as you go into reverse. One of the easiest ways to do that would be to power the camera from the reverse lights. When the camera wakes up and makes a bluetooth or wifi connection, the tablet can auto-load the app that displays the camera. As soon as the connection is severed the tablet can auto-kill the camera app.

I'd like to do some sort of RCA-to-IPcam conversion with the camera I have currently (but don't use).


Quote:
Originally Posted by BMWMac View Post
I think to achieve the best possible look, you would want to get the relocation kit. That being said, the applicable one for my car was the most expensive (I think almost $100) and I decided to make my own modifications to the existing bracket to make the HVAC controls fit very snug and look good. Look at post #10 in this thread: http://forum.e46fanatics.com/showthr...ghlight=bmwmac
I didn't do this as my car originally came with the widescreen nav. However, I read somewhere that you don't need to do most of the relocation work if you have a tablet because it doesn't take up much space. Not sure what that entails.

Last edited by Danoff; 05-13-2014 at 02:20 PM.
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