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Old 7th June 2022, 13:23   #166
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Hi
Do anyone in this forum use Nakamichi Android car player?. The shop which sell these sets say its better than Woodman, Blaupunkt Moco etc. Whats your opinion about this brand? Online reviews are practically nil for the brand. Also has anyone used Android Box which can be connected to the oem system which has Apple Carplay built in? It seems Moco has a model CP-02 which has android 9 with 4GB/64GB and using Snapdragon Processor? Megaaudio has the same specification product which is available in Amazon for 19k, whereas Moco is selling for 29000 MRP .
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Old 9th June 2022, 20:02   #167
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

The advantage with HiWoodman has been it allows for all the steering controls to work without issues and even climate control changes are shown on the display.
Wireless Carplay or Android Auto may not work as I've only been able to use it with a USB cable, not wirelessly.
If you plan on Carplay, do get a good quality MFI-certified cable as I've had issues with generic lightning cables.
No major lags on the HiWoodman unit but you do need to get used to reaching out to the screen to change stuff like which app to launch (navigation or music) or at times getting Android Auto to allow calls thru the vehicle speaker and mic vs. the phone's. This happened a few times with Android Auto on my Pixel 4a.
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Old 12th June 2022, 13:56   #168
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

I hope I am not too late to reply your queries.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 13thpsycho View Post
Here are the key points that I would like covered in the system.
1. If I go from the above mentioned brands where do I source the frame to support a 7 inch or a 9 inch screen? I know woodman gives one.
Any reputed shop dealing in the reputed brand stereos will provide the frame.

Quote:
2. My main purpose of upgrading the screen is to get wired or wireless Apple carplay
Android Auto/Apple Carplay certified units from the mentioned brands will have no issues, just make sure to use proper high speed data cable.

Quote:
3. I don't like laggy displays so it has to be responsive
Any new gen branded system with capacitive touch screen will work fluently given that your phone model is also able to handle the processing. To give you an idea, I use a 2019 Android phone powered by that time's mid range Snapdragon 636 SOC and things run reasonably smooth in predictable manner.


It takes a little while when you connect your phone with the system before drive. Its because nothing is stored on the HU except the phone's profile. So the things take few seconds or a minute to load/mirror the system in the HU.

Quote:
4. I love my music so with the factory speakers what do you think should work best.
Then preferred brands and HUs will be in this order -
1. Alpine - ILX W650E/660E - Loaded with plenty of audio customization features. Both have option of adding a dedicated KTA-450 amp which attaches behind the HU. But downside is these HUs have only single USB port.

2. Pioneer- Plenty of options, they also have a detachable Android tablet based system. Though its not a typical Android Auto/Apple Car Play, rather it works independently with inbuilt apps.

3. Sony- Sony XAV 5500 and above, they have two USB ports where you can always leave a music thumb drive attached in second port.

Quote:
5. I don't have rear parking sensors installed so do any of these work with parking sensors preferably front and rear with a separate parking screen like the VAG cars.
I have no idea about aftermarket parking sensors, but camera works perfectly fine which I think is enough. Consult with the accessory guy.

Quote:
6. The camera quality is poor on the city, any recommendations camera recommendations?
Lot of options available these days at dirt cheap price like 2-3K, you can test them at the shop and pick the one you like.
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Old 19th June 2022, 18:09   #169
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by speedmunster View Post
The best part is that the wiring was a direct plug-n-play and the steering controls work like a factory unit itself. Also, the screen dims itself when the headlights are turned on.

Hello sir, I have a Honda City of the same generation and had a couple of questions before I went ahead with my own upgrade. I would be grateful if you could answer them for me. Thank you in advance.

1. The HU fits flush with the frame; was the frame procured separately or did it come with the HU?

2. What is the size of the HU?

3. If you feel comfortable disclosing this on a public forum, how much did it set you back?
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Old 21st June 2022, 02:50   #170
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbppjpr View Post
I hope I am not too late to reply your queries.
Thank you very much for the reply! Atleast someone read my post

From what I have read is that Sony has resistive touch panels which are slightly sluggish. I have seen a friend use xav 5500 in his pajero sfx. It was a little laggy but the sound quality improved drastically over a hypersonic which he had earlier.

The tablet pioneer and other models are out of stock these days, Sony is the only reputed brand with a range of products. This makes me wonder if pioneer is gearing up for new product launches.

I have seen some images of Sony xav 8000 installed in a city. It looks hideous! I love the clean lines and the look of a let's say 10 inch hypersonic in a honda city dash.

Have you seen the woodman series? Any reviews on the sound output? They have priced their models above the xav 8100.
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Old 21st June 2022, 08:41   #171
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by 13thpsycho View Post
Thank you very much for the reply! Atleast someone read my post

From what I have read is that Sony has resistive touch panels which are slightly sluggish. I have seen a friend use xav 5500 in his pajero sfx. It was a little laggy but the sound quality improved drastically over a hypersonic which he had earlier.
No, Sony XAV5000 onwards have capacitive touch screen and they are no sluggish by any mean. Maybe the phone, Android OS version, Android Auto app version or the cable had some issues when your friend used it. This is what happens in most cases.

I have also experienced lags when my phone was running on some buggy custom Android ROM, on the other hand stock ROM used to run fine. Also the better custom ROM version is also running okay.

Quote:
I have seen some images of Sony xav 8000 installed in a city. It looks hideous! I love the clean lines and the look of a let's say 10 inch hypersonic in a honda city dash.
The 8000 is not an in-dash system, it hangs out of the the dashboard so it may look good in some car models and may not go well in some others.

Quote:
Have you seen the woodman series? Any reviews on the sound output? They have priced their models above the xav 8100.
Dude, if you want safe and reliable car specific functions which don't give up when you need them most during your drives then avoid these Chinese systems.

If you don't mind the HU falling out of dashboard when you cross any speed breaker or pothole at high speed, if you don't mind the audio quality, if you use your HU while parking and don't mind the reliability and safety while driving, then surely go with such HUs.

I have tried three different Android HUs before settling up for the smaller but reliable Android Auto based HU. See my detailed review in this thread I posted few days ago.
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Old 21st June 2022, 14:12   #172
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Guys, I have a quick question. I want to upgrade the system on my Jetta which is I think a 320G. Basically it has OPS and displays some of the info on the small screen on the instrument console. is there any headunit which can do android auto and apple car play, which will work with the VW canbus systems?
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Old 21st June 2022, 14:27   #173
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by mav2000 View Post
Guys, I have a quick question. I want to upgrade the system on my Jetta which is I think a 320G. Basically it has OPS and displays some of the info on the small screen on the instrument console. is there any headunit which can do android auto and apple car play, which will work with the VW canbus systems?
Most Android Automobile operated HU can do what you want using some Android Auto/Apple Carplay emulators. Even some HUs come with some preinstalled emulators or similar workarounds. Just make sure it supports the Can Bus of your car. You can also find some new generation VW OEM HUs which can be fitted in your Jetta, you just need to find proper source dealing in them.
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Old 21st June 2022, 15:56   #174
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Hello experts,

I have been looking to buy a used Tata Hexa XTA. While the plan is temporarily on hold- it still makes sense to ask this question. My current drive is a Tata Nexon XZ+, with an OEM system that supports Android Auto / Car Play. Having used it for over 4 years now, I cannot digest the fact that I will have to manage without this if I go with a Hexa (only mid-2019 onwards variants came with AA/Car Play support). Reliability and sound quality are the 2 most important requirements and thus Android OS-based systems are out of the question.

Basis my limited research on the subject, I have zeroed in on Sony XAV 5500 or Pioneer 5290. I will not be upgrading the existing speakers as Hexa XTA already has a 10-speaker set-up, which is fairly decent. I will just go ahead with damping to enhance the output. My key questions are:
a) Sony 5500 or Pioneer 5290? Decent quality sound output is the requirement and I don't need fancy settings
b) Will these systems be able to support a 10-speaker output arrangement? Will the existing OEM amp work?
c) I understand that steering-mounted controls will work, but I am not sure about the OEM mic. The phone quality in the OEM system is very good and I don't want to mess it up with a 3rd party mic
d) Will the existing OEM reverse camera work? I know the camera quality is not that great but still want to utilize the existing hardware
e) Since Tata Hexa is now discontinued- will frame availability be a challenge?
f) Lastly, any good audio shops/installers in Delhi-NCR?
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Old 21st June 2022, 18:52   #175
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by tarik.arora View Post
a) Sony 5500 or Pioneer 5290? Decent quality sound output is the requirement and I don't need fancy settings
b) Will these systems be able to support a 10-speaker output arrangement? Will the existing OEM amp work?
If you directly want to play the speakers out of the HU then Sony XAV 7000 has 100W rated output, you can check that out. The Pioneer systems seems to be having resistivity touch panel, I am not sure, please check. if so then better to avoid it.

If you want to install additional amp without getting the wiring mess then consider the Alpine ILX 650/660. They have a dedicated amp as additional accessory which can be fitted behind the shallow body of the HUs.

If your car already has an amp then Sony 5500 is good enough with the 5v pre outs. I am also using the same with Audison 4 ch amp. Though Alpine HUs score better in terms of audio quality and features whereas Sony has advantage of second USB port where you can leave a music thumb drive attached.

Good part with this port is that when music is being played using the thumb drive, the sound level is reduced when the navigation app throws any notification, similar like how an native Android Auto/Apple Carplay music app behaves. Such is the seamless integration these branded systems have between the system apps and Android Auto/Apple Carplay.

You can also check few of my past posts in the same thread for more details.

Quote:
c) I understand that steering-mounted controls will work, but I am not sure about the OEM mic. The phone quality in the OEM system is very good and I don't want to mess it up with a 3rd party mic
d) Will the existing OEM reverse camera work? I know the camera quality is not that great but still want to utilize the existing hardware
e) Since Tata Hexa is now discontinued- will frame availability be a challenge?
If the mic and camera got universal connectors then no issues, even if they don't have then any competitive installer will have some convertor or so. Frame also should not be an issue, maybe you need to inform your installer in advance for the frame.

On the other hand setting up steering control is bit tricky in some cars but your installer must be having some solution.

Quote:
f) Lastly, any good audio shops/installers in Delhi-NCR?
Driven and Motor Concept are couple of names I can recall now. There are few more reputed installers in Delhi, you can search the forum for them.

Last edited by tbppjpr : 21st June 2022 at 18:57.
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Old 24th June 2022, 11:30   #176
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by brohanv View Post
Hello sir, I have a Honda City of the same generation and had a couple of questions before I went ahead with my own upgrade. I would be grateful if you could answer them for me. Thank you in advance.

1. The HU fits flush with the frame; was the frame procured separately or did it come with the HU?

2. What is the size of the HU?

3. If you feel comfortable disclosing this on a public forum, how much did it set you back?
Hey brohanv,

1. The frame is a part of the set and there is no additional parts required.
2. the screen is 10.1 inches diagonal.
3. I procured the HU from Aliexpress a few years ago a and if i'm not wrong, the HU set me back approx. 16000 incl customs. These days you can get a similar HU locally or online for slightly lesser.

Hit me up if you want more info.

Cheers
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Old 27th June 2022, 11:55   #177
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by tbppjpr View Post
I hope I am not too late to reply your queries.

Any reputed shop dealing in the reputed brand stereos will provide the frame.

Android Auto/Apple Carplay certified units from the mentioned brands will have no issues, just make sure to use proper high speed data cable.
Hi tbp, sorry for the delay in converting the PM to the open thread, I couldn't find time to reply in the thread in a way I feel would cover every question I had.

I am a total beginner regarding aftermarket HU fitments, I don't remember ever changing the OEM system in any cars my family has owned.

I have a 2018 Aspire Titanium diesel. The system I have right now is the stock one that came with pre-facelift Aspire, with all the dialpad and everything, it's not the SYNC system that the Titanium+ had, I've attached a picture from the internet for reference. I want to change it to a touchscreen unit, preferably from a known company like Pioneer, Kenwood, Sony, Alpine etc etc.

The Android Head-Unit buying guide-aspire-titanium-hu.jpg

So the questions I had was,

1. In the case of Chinese "Android systems", I think they usually come along with a custom built frame that is identical to the existing centre console frame, except the placement of the hazard light switch, I've attached a picture from the internet for reference. I don't know if the brands themselves provide the frame or its the distributors who procure the frame for the car.

The reason I don't prefer Chinese android systems w.r.t my car is that they're just too big (9 inches and even bigger) and most of the options look pretty much the same, I assume they're all made by one big factory in China and then they just get rebranded by different brands, and hence all of them end up being too big and they block the flow of the central AC vents and their sound output turns out to be worse than the stock system for some reason. I've tested a couple of them I've seen in other Figos and all of them confirm the flaws I found.

Systems from brands like Sony, Pioneer etc are just about the size I want (around 7 inches), they sit flush with the centre console instead of jutting out like a tablet, like the one in the picture and I'm sure they perform better than their Chinese counterparts, but I've never seen them providing custom frames.

I want to know, do the big brands also provide the frame of the same type for cars?

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2. If such a frame is not provided by these brands, what do people normally do to fit them? Do they take out the stock system from the existing frame and then cut the centre console plastic frame to match the new unit? If my guess is correct, will letting shops do that be a problem regarding NVH and dust getting inside the dashboard?

3. Would it be more wise to procure the HU and then try and install it on my own or take the car to some shop and let them do the work?

4. I'm assuming with the known brands, all the remaining centre console functions and the steering mounted controls would work seamlessly. Is that the case?

5. Will fitting a touchscreen unit from the above mentioned brands require wire cutting of any kind? My car is now out of warranty but I'd still prefer not cutting wires.

6. I'm assuming currently there are two kinds of HU in the market, one are the chinese ones which are a whole android system in itself, running android OS, and then there are the systems which don't run android OS, which are the ones from the known brands. Is my assumption correct?

7. Keeping the above questions in mind, would you recomment a good system for my car? I prefer the known brands and it can be a system running android OS or not, what I need is Android Auto/Car Play compatibility, good sound output which must match stock one or exceed it, all the existing steering mounted controls should work and since I'll lose the physical phone dialpad buttons if I change the stock unit (I use it a lot), I would prefer a system which has voice command or something would make calling people easier. My budget is currently 30,000, but I can stretch it till 40,000 if the unit is really that nice and worth it.

8. I think there must be a different thread regarding sound system upgrades, but since this is a long reply, I guess you wouldn't mind suggesting a good brand to replace the stock speakers with. Stock system are 4 speakers on doors, I don't plan on adding tweeters as that would require drilling, but if tweeters can be added without any doorpad cutting, kindly suggest the same too.

I think my questions run parallel with what many beginners to this area would have, so it is nice that you recommended that I ask it in the thread instead of in the PM box, it would be helpful.

Thanks in advance,

Sai

Last edited by SaiSW : 27th June 2022 at 12:24.
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Old 27th June 2022, 12:21   #178
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiSW View Post

6. Keeping the above questions in mind, would you recomment a good system for my car? I prefer the known brands
1&2. Reputed brands generally stick to the standard sizes which are 1 din and 2 din. 2 din should get you a 7 inch screen. Anything bigger would usually be built as a modular setup where the screen is connected via a cable to the main unit. Chinese manufacturers (and some Indian sellers who are rebranding this stuff) are the ones who make these larger screens with custom frames. Otherwise you will get frames built to accommodate a 2 din head unit which will accommodate any 2 din from any manufacturer

3. If you're buying branded you can buy seperately, but especially for Chinese head units it's better to buy it locally as they have very high failure rates and you will need someone local to support when things go wrong

4. Is a mixed bag. Some car manufacturers (eg Honda, Toyota) have well known steering wheel connections, and some branded head units(blaupunkt, sony, pioneer) have good built in interface support. Some brands like alpine need dedicated interface hardware. I would recommend it best to check with other Ford owners or the installer to confirm if it would work, and if it works completely (plenty of cases only some buttons would work)
5. A good installer can do it without cutting any wires or stripping any of the cars stock wiring insulation. All you need is the proper wiring harness
6. There are plenty of branded head units running Android

7. Will skip this one as i don't have any experience with fords
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Old 27th June 2022, 13:07   #179
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaiSW View Post
I have a 2018 Aspire Titanium diesel. The system I have right now is the stock one that came with pre-facelift Aspire, with all the dialpad and everything, it's not the SYNC system that the Titanium+ had, I've attached a picture from the internet for reference. I want to change it to a touchscreen unit, preferably from a known company like Pioneer, Kenwood, Sony, Alpine etc etc.
Well, you got a car with weird/unusual dashboard layout which does not support standard systems.

My father in law also has Aspire, though its a lower model which came without any factory stereo so we got single din stereo installed from the dealer.

As far as I know, it can not accommodate the standard 7 inch in-dash systems, if it can be fitted then all good, you got plenty of options.

But since I have seen only single din unit installed in it, you can look at something like Sony XAV 8000 which needs single din space in the dashboard to get installed.

The display panel will be installed in island type manner which will protrude out of the dashboard but the height can be adjusted at the time of installation. Your will need a faceplate of Ford Aspire base model which your installer can provide.

It would be better to visit some authorized Sony installer and consult with them about other possibilities.


Answering your other queries:-

1. Most part is already answered above and regarding Chinese Android units, they are screwed on the faceplate and that faceplate is fitted back using the locks which are not reliable. The system falls apart on bad roads in many cars. Better avoid them unless you have specific usage like tinkering with cars features etc.

2. First no need to cut the frame since appropriate frames are usually provided by the installer along with the system. If someone is insisting on cutting the dashboard then don't deal with him.

3. As I said, you got an car with unusual layout, you rather need to look for more experienced installer.

4. Branded system provide a separate universal harness which usually works with most steering control. Again your installer will tell you better.

5. Wire cutting is not needed, be it branded system or Chinese. Couplers are usually available with the installer and whatever cutting is needed is done on the coupler's wiring.

6. Yes.

7. See my opening reply.

8. I can not suggest any specific brand since everyone got different ears and different audio taste. So best judge will be yourself. Best would be to audition few speakers in your car at the installer's shop.

One suggestion though If you are going with Sony, avoid speakers having sharper notes, like Infinities are quite popular but they are also sharper and Sony system will make them sounding harsher to some ears. I ended up having this deadly combo since I did not get any other option than Sony which got dual USB ports. Though I have managed to adjust audio using EQs but better to avoid such combination.

And tweeters are must if you want to feel any upgrade in the audio. There are component sets available with multiple installation options where tweeters can be mounted on the dashboard without drilling. But I don't think cutting holes in the plastic panels is big deal these days. Preferred location is A pillar panels.

And make sure whichever tweeters you get have the adjustable direction. Also make sure tweeter are not too near to any reflective surface like dashboard or glass. More breathing space your provide around them, better they will sound.
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Old 5th August 2022, 23:32   #180
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Re: The Android Head-Unit buying guide

Quote:
Originally Posted by FlashMustang View Post
Hello everyone,

I'm trying to get my stock system on my Honda City 2012 model (3rd generation) upgraded to a reliable system with Android Auto in Hyderabad.

Unfortunately, the accessories team at the Honda authorized service center is quoting between 35,000 to 38,000 for the Blaupunkt New York model (also available on Flipkart) to be fitted.
I refuse to get get ripped off so badly, especially when the official site quotes Rs. 20,890 (with a free reversing camera) and Flipkart quotes Rs. 18,691. I understand the need for accessories, couplers, labor charges, etc. but, the charges quoted are a steep premium over the cost of the unit they proposed.

I would be happy with a simple system that would support Google Maps and the popular online music streaming apps. I wouldn't mind connecting my phone to the head unit through a cable.

I would not prefer any sort of splicing of wires and would prefer a connector to connector fit for the head unit. I would like the unit to work with the steering mounted controls.

I would appreciate any leads to trustworthy places in Hyderabad where I can get my head unit upgraded, and any recommendations of head units to consider.

Thanks in advance, everyone!
I'd like to throw my hat in the ring to bump this query as well. Finally I am at a stage where I can afford an overhaul. I'm driving a 2012 model ANHC. So if someone could kindly suggest:
- Android HU (with matching facia because it won't work in this model otherwise)
- Suggestions to replace the front components (in the default spaces)
- Place in Vijayawada to get this done and tentative cost.

I would be indebted and will shower with thanks!
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