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Old 17th June 2016, 15:20   #16
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Awesome upgrade Dr.AD. The HU integrates very well into the dashboard, and looks OE. Looking forward to seeing the system during the upcoming TBHP meet in Ooty. For the GPS antenna, relocate it inside the dashboard and it should be fine. There are many users who have done this and get good signal.
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Old 17th June 2016, 15:56   #17
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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Thank you very much for your suggestion. I am also trying to check if i can buy an OBD II bluetooth dongle with an on/off switch so that it does not always drain the battery. I did spot a few models and have sent my queries to the seller just to get clarity. In case you know any proven dongle, please do let me know. Thanks again for your response.
I don't think the battery drain is a real issue. The drain current is extremely small, and unless you are going to leave your car unused for weeks, this should not be an issue. I have been keeping and OBDII adapter plugged into my car all the time, for about an year now, and never faced any issue whatsoever.

However, if you are really serious about getting a good device with proper power management system, you should get the original Scantool OBDLink LX (http://www.obdlink.com/lxbt/). This is the original one as opposed to the cheap clones. This costs $50, plus another $50 for express shipping if you chose that, but it is totally worth it.

Here is my experience: I was using a cheap ELM327 in the beginning just to test things out. As it happened, I really liked the Torque Pro app and was sold on the utility of that app, but this ELM327 adapter kept on getting hung every once in a while (about once a week). When the adapter hangs in that way, the only solution is to pull it out and then plug back in (which resets the power to the adapter). This was a real annoyance. Therefore, I decided to order the original OBDLink LX mentioned above. and I am very happy with it.

If you get the OBDLink LX, then Torque Pro has a special "power saving" setting just for that adapter (does not work with clone adapters). This setting puts the device in power off mode in some time after you disconnect Torque from it.

I bought OBDLink more for its robust connection and much faster data read speeds (I can see the data getting refreshed much faster than it was with the cheaper ELM327 adapter), and I am really happy with it. With this adapter, I hardly had one hung connection in last 4 months or so.

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Originally Posted by graaja View Post
Awesome upgrade Dr.AD. The HU integrates very well into the dashboard, and looks OE. Looking forward to seeing the system during the upcoming TBHP meet in Ooty. For the GPS antenna, relocate it inside the dashboard and it should be fine. There are many users who have done this and get good signal.
Thanks a lot graaja. And thanks again for your thread, which really gave me the motivation to buy this one! Your DIY information convinced me that this system will work, and even if it does not, I can figure out how to make it work, thanks to the information you have given.

Yes, definitely looking forward to meeting you in Ooty drive. We can check out our systems and I will appreciate any suggestion from you especially about sound quality.
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Old 17th June 2016, 23:08   #18
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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When I searched again now, I do see some systems with Android 5.1. So that is pretty much the latest you can get. However, Android auto is a different game. Neither did I see anything available with that, nor do I see a need. The way I understand it, if you have a full-fledged Android device in your car, then it is much better than Android auto. Android auto is a subset of Android functionalities, and it allows you to port some Android functions on your head-unit. But if your head-unit has the full-fledged Android running on it, and it is already synced to your Google account, Android auto has already become irrelevant for you at that time.
Take a look at this video:
There are Android auto head units too: http://www.androidheadlines.com/2015...ead-units.html
Android auto is undoubtedly better, a little more expensive right now but that will change soon.
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Old 18th June 2016, 08:49   #19
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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Android auto is undoubtedly better, a little more expensive right now but that will change soon.
We are probably digressing and this is off-topic, but the question is, better than what?

Android Auto is definitely better than "conventional" head-units which had no support for Android apps or other Google features. However, if you have a proper Android unit, then Android Auto is definitely not better than that, since it becomes a subset of features.

In other words, if you have an Android head-unit, then you have already got all the features of the Android Auto and then some more! In the video you posted, they talk about "coming features" to Android Auto. Those are already regular Android features which would be available in any Android head-unit.

In fact, we don't need to debate it here since this is OT for this thread. However, a lot of interesting discussion can be found here, with pros and cons of both options being discussed well: http://forum.xda-developers.com/andr...-unit-t3206181
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Old 26th June 2016, 12:43   #20
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

About shipping from Aliexpress, did you face any issues regarding Customs? I was planning something similar but I have heard many stories that any imports above Rs 3000 faces the ire of the Customs. Which means huge duties to pay.
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Old 26th June 2016, 16:17   #21
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

Just some suggestions, you can use HERE maps which has offline map data support. Maps can be downloaded state or country wise in the storage partition of the ROM. Also you can install the latest Google search app and the Google Now launcher (both are needed for the launcher to work), the latest version enables landscape orientation, offline voice command support for simple tasks like calling someone or opening an app. It would give you some of the modern feel of the Android Auto UI. For media playback, the VLC 2.0 with TV UI enabled in the settings would look good on your HU.
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Old 26th June 2016, 16:45   #22
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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About shipping from Aliexpress, did you face any issues regarding Customs? I was planning something similar but I have heard many stories that any imports above Rs 3000 faces the ire of the Customs. Which means huge duties to pay.
Yes. An item of this value will definitely attract customs (I paid about 4.7K customs for a $310 value). But as an item of this value is usually shipped through FedEx or DHL, the courier will pay the customs duty and collect it from you at the time of delivery. You will have to just send some KYC documents to the courier for clearing customs. Other than sending the documents, no other hassles.
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Old 26th June 2016, 17:35   #23
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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Originally Posted by Debajyoti View Post
Just some suggestions, you can use HERE maps which has offline map data support. Maps can be downloaded state or country wise in the storage partition of the ROM. Also you can install the latest Google search app and the Google Now launcher (both are needed for the launcher to work), the latest version enables landscape orientation, offline voice command support for simple tasks like calling someone or opening an app. It would give you some of the modern feel of the Android Auto UI. For media playback, the VLC 2.0 with TV UI enabled in the settings would look good on your HU.
Thanks for the suggestions. Actually I use NaviMaps, which is MapMyIndia's offline map app, as offline maps. The maps are downloaded once and stored on the SD card (you can choose the download location). I never really had to use it on the road, but whenever I used it just for trying it out, it worked pretty well. So I have kept this as my backup offline option in case I run into situation where I can't use Google maps.

However, now even Google maps has an offline option, and at least on my phone, it works beautifully. They have removed most of the restrictions on offline map areas/sizes, and now you can download a huge chunk of map (while on WiFi) for offline use. These offline maps are searchable too! So before every road trip, I download Google maps of the areas I will drive through as well as the destination, and I have found this to be a perfectly valid solution. Thus, I never had to use NaviMaps in any of my drives so far.

I also have the Google search app and the Google Now launcher. Both work well. However, unlike on phone, you can't use the voice command to dial a number on this head-unit. The reason is that this is not a phone, and the firmware does not have any support for handling calls directly. Think of this is a tablet without phone (e.g. Nexus 7). So when you say, for example, "call xyz" on this head-unit, instead of making that call, it will just open the google search and search for "call xyz" (on the other hand, on a phone with Google Now, "call xyz" works perfectly).

This head-unit has a separate system app (which is not a user installed app, but part of the basic apps that came factory installed) for handling calls. When you open this app, it opens a dealer where you see your contact list, your call logs, etc. You can search your contacts, or click on the call logs to dial out, etc. Basically you can do all the functions of a phone here, once you open this app. But without opening this app, there is no support to handle calls though other means.

If anybody has found a way around this, then please share here. That will be very helpful!

Regarding music player, I use PowerAmp (paid version) and I am pretty happy with that.

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Originally Posted by graaja View Post
But as an item of this value is usually shipped through FedEx or DHL, the courier will pay the customs duty and collect it from you at the time of delivery. You will have to just send some KYC documents to the courier for clearing customs. Other than sending the documents, no other hassles.
+1 to this. My experience has been exactly the same.

Last edited by Dr.AD : 26th June 2016 at 17:40.
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Old 26th June 2016, 20:19   #24
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

For some reason, NaviMaps is laggy on all my devices but HERE maps runs smoothly, that's the reason I suggested the later. HERE also lets you select the download location and these locations are searchable offline. A bit OT maybe, you said it's rooted so if I tinker with some system apps and soft brick it, is the full stock rom easily available online?
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Old 26th June 2016, 22:36   #25
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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A bit OT maybe, you said it's rooted so if I tinker with some system apps and soft brick it, is the full stock rom easily available online?
Well, I haven't really downloaded any ROM myself (or did not even look for one), so I don't know for sure. However, based on the discussions on various forums, I get the impression that the stock ROM as well as some custom ROMs are easily available online for these head-units.
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Old 25th August 2016, 02:56   #26
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

How many pre outs does this hu have?
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Old 26th August 2016, 08:46   #27
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Default Re: Review: Android Head-Unit in my Maruti SX4

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How many pre outs does this hu have?
The unit comes with a separate group of cables if you want to install amplifier. You can see those cables wrapped in a plastic pouch in the picture I posted. These cables have outputs for front left, front right, rear left, rear right, sub out, and two video signals.

Here is the relevant portion (that shows the preamp outputs) from the wiring diagram picture that I posted earlier:

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Last edited by Dr.AD : 26th August 2016 at 09:01. Reason: Added the picture
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