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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
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  #1  
Old 05-16-2009, 03:56 PM
loci loci is offline
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Question Aftermarket Stereo in X3

I am thinking of installing an aftermarket stereo in my '07 X3.

I am looking for a stereo with bluetooth, usb, ipod connector.

Pros:
- I don't have bluetooth and buying a bluetooth module costs more than an advanced stereo /w bluetooth.
- The aux connector is in the back of the center console. With a new stereo with Aux/Ipod connector on the unit will be more convenient.

Cons:
- An aftermarket stereo will most likely be a DIN size that won't look as nice as the BMW unit.
- The audio controls or bluetooth steering wheel controls might not work
- RDS might not work with the aftermarket unit

Any ideas on what I should do? Basically, I am deciding to do this because of the bluetooth connectivity in the car. I feel around ~$1000.00 CDN for an OEM bluetooth module is really not worth the price. I can spend $500-600 on a decent unit that can provide everything I want.

Any recommendations and pictures of what others have done? I would like to see what an aftermarket unit in the X3 will look like.

Thanks!
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  #2  
Old 05-16-2009, 05:45 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loci View Post
I am thinking of installing an aftermarket stereo in my '07 X3.

I am looking for a stereo with bluetooth, usb, ipod connector.

Pros:
- I don't have bluetooth and buying a bluetooth module costs more than an advanced stereo /w bluetooth.
- The aux connector is in the back of the center console. With a new stereo with Aux/Ipod connector on the unit will be more convenient.

Cons:
- An aftermarket stereo will most likely be a DIN size that won't look as nice as the BMW unit.
- The audio controls or bluetooth steering wheel controls might not work
- RDS might not work with the aftermarket unit

Any ideas on what I should do? Basically, I am deciding to do this because of the bluetooth connectivity in the car. I feel around ~$1000.00 CDN for an OEM bluetooth module is really not worth the price. I can spend $500-600 on a decent unit that can provide everything I want.

Any recommendations and pictures of what others have done? I would like to see what an aftermarket unit in the X3 will look like.

Thanks!

All of the above can be done for the price listed. In your case I recommend the Alpine CDA-9886 http://www.crutchfield.com/p_500CDA9...6.html?tp=5684

It will do everything you are talking about minus RDS. The steering control interface costs an additional $80 and much can be added later on. The face plate I chose was for the Z4 which is off center since I later placed cradle to hold my phone on the right hand side.

This is my second install in an X3 (the first an AT 07 X3, and the second an MT 08 X3).

The sound will be ten times better than what you currently have (even if its the premium set up).

Here are three pictures: Two are my installed HU's, the other what is in your vehicle now.

The installation kits cost all of $20.00 faceplate and $40 wiring harness (all numbers in US currency).


Please feel free to PM.

EE
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  #3  
Old 05-16-2009, 09:45 PM
loci loci is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Evlengr View Post
All of the above can be done for the price listed. In your case I recommend the Alpine CDA-9886 http://www.crutchfield.com/p_500CDA9...6.html?tp=5684

It will do everything you are talking about minus RDS. The steering control interface costs an additional $80 and much can be added later on. The face plate I chose was for the Z4 which is off center since I later placed cradle to hold my phone on the right hand side.

This is my second install in an X3 (the first an AT 07 X3, and the second an MT 08 X3).

The sound will be ten times better than what you currently have (even if its the premium set up).

Here are three pictures: Two are my installed HU's, the other what is in your vehicle now.

The installation kits cost all of $20.00 faceplate and $40 wiring harness (all numbers in US currency).


Please feel free to PM.

EE
Thanks for the pics and recommendation Evlengr! The Alpine unit seems impressive although it would have been nice to see the display in red to match the X3's back-lights.

How difficult was it to bring the usb/ipod wire up to the storage bin? That would be very nice. With the alpine unit in the specs it states Apline bluetooth adapter for bluetooth connectivity, not sure what that means but can I simple connect my phone to the unit and expect my contacts to sync and caller-id to work?
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  #4  
Old 05-16-2009, 07:02 PM
mybavauto mybavauto is offline
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if u want to still use single DIN, get one of the alpines. for double DIN, eclipse makes the best sh!t. their expensive but its worth it. a good deck results in a good stereo. the double DIN's have EVERYTHING. you can still get alot from a single DIN as well. the double DIN eclipse's have bluetooth, backup camera, ipod, xm/sirus, navigation, usb, hd radio, etc!
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  #5  
Old 05-16-2009, 09:48 PM
loci loci is offline
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Originally Posted by mybavauto View Post
if u want to still use single DIN, get one of the alpines. for double DIN, eclipse makes the best sh!t. their expensive but its worth it. a good deck results in a good stereo. the double DIN's have EVERYTHING. you can still get alot from a single DIN as well. the double DIN eclipse's have bluetooth, backup camera, ipod, xm/sirus, navigation, usb, hd radio, etc!
I really like the double DIN units, but I don't think I can install it in the X3, there just isn't space. So i guess for single DIN units, you can't beat Alpines?
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  #6  
Old 05-17-2009, 07:03 AM
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bettnugs bettnugs is offline
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Thumbs up on Evlengr's assessment.

I've got the Alpine 9884. Very happy with the sound and the ipod integration. Didn't attempt to do the install myself however. Left that to the professionals. True, the unit looks a bit out of place in the dash compared to the stock unit, but the sound more than makes up for it.
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  #7  
Old 05-17-2009, 10:43 AM
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minicrazy592 minicrazy592 is offline
about the mini part....
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Aftermarkets are not for me. I like my factory look where everything matches. I won't even buy a car with it done to it. Imagine how hard its been to find an E30 with its factory radio intact
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  #8  
Old 05-17-2009, 11:33 AM
JVergence JVergence is offline
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Does an after market installation impact either the 4/50 or CPO warranties???

Thanks for the feedback.

JV
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  #9  
Old 05-17-2009, 02:55 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Nope.

Quote:
Originally Posted by JVergence View Post
Does an after market installation impact either the 4/50 or CPO warranties???

Thanks for the feedback.

JV
No they don't in the US. They will tell you they do but the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act protects you from that. The only thing that it may void is the audio components.

They tried that on me when I confronted them with the AT issues a while back until I let them know they were misinformed. They immediately apologized and backed off.

As long as you don't short out the wiring or hack anything your are safe.

If youare unsure, have an insured professional do it. That way if something goes wrong they pay for it.

EE
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2013 S4 Loaded (and NO RFT's) Awesome is an understatement
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  #10  
Old 05-18-2009, 11:53 AM
JVergence JVergence is offline
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Does anyone have any experience or opinions to share about the Pioneer DEH-P6100BT???

Thanks.

JV
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  #11  
Old 05-18-2009, 12:22 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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The model I had prior to my current Alpine was a Pioneer. Very nice HU. In fact it is now being installed to a third owner.

In my personal and professional experience I have had great experiences with Pioneer electronics.

They are built well and offer good functionality.

I am very impressed that they have incorporated RDS into an after-market radio.

It's only drawback for me would be that it only has 2 and not 3 RCA inputs.

How much are they asking for it?
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2013 S4 Loaded (and NO RFT's) Awesome is an understatement
2008 MT X3 RIP you were a faithful sidekick and will be missed.
2007 AT X3 RIPOS
2005 GC
2000 Jeep Cherokee
1997 Twin Turbo RX-7
1984 GTI Wolfsburg Edition Neuspeed and more
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  #12  
Old 05-18-2009, 12:40 PM
JVergence JVergence is offline
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How much are they asking for it?

The average price appears to be $260-.

JV
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  #13  
Old 05-18-2009, 12:48 PM
shamernj shamernj is offline
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I have a Pioneer HU installed on my boat - the DEH-P6900UB which requires a BT adapter. Nice HU and integrates with the Ipod well although with 500+ albums on my Ipod it takes a long time to scroll. The sound is good but not great - I also have a Mac Mini with external DAC that sound much better in the Aux port than the Ipod connected through the USB port (both using the same Apple Lossless audio files). The pioneer takes the sound out of the Ipod as digital and uses the internal DAC in the HU. Maybe not fair to compare it to a dedicated external DAC though.

Another option would be this Alpine unit:

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_500EX10...ne-eX-10.html?

It can use FM transmission for the signal but you'd need the minijack to an Aux in for better quality. The page in Crutchfield even says this - "You can select either blue or red for the background color - the red option makes the eX-10 look right at home on the dash of an Audi or BMW". Don't know how good the DAC is on this though. I imagine the interface is similar to Evlengr's Alpine but this uses a remote control as opposed to controls on an HU. Could be good if it can be installed in the tray above the dash like a lot have done with navigation units - giving you all the Ipod integration and sound quality without affecting the aesthetics.

Stuart
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  #14  
Old 05-18-2009, 09:47 PM
JVergence JVergence is offline
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And what is the consensus regarding built-in or visor mounted mics for BT??? I'm slightly apprehensive about fishing a mic cable through the A pillar to the driver visor. On the other hand, the pickup quality has to be superior with the visor mounting.

BTW, where does BMW locate the mic in their option package??

Thanks again.

JV
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  #15  
Old 05-18-2009, 09:59 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JVergence View Post
And what is the consensus regarding built-in or visor mounted mics for BT??? I'm slightly apprehensive about fishing a mic cable through the A pillar to the driver visor. On the other hand, the pickup quality has to be superior with the visor mounting.

BTW, where does BMW locate the mic in their option package??

Thanks again.

JV
9 out of 10 engineers agree the visor mount are better, lol. Seriously, an external mic will be superior in noise rejection and pick up.
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2013 S4 Loaded (and NO RFT's) Awesome is an understatement
2008 MT X3 RIP you were a faithful sidekick and will be missed.
2007 AT X3 RIPOS
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1984 GTI Wolfsburg Edition Neuspeed and more
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  #16  
Old 05-19-2009, 06:55 AM
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legalfee legalfee is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JVergence View Post
And what is the consensus regarding built-in or visor mounted mics for BT??? I'm slightly apprehensive about fishing a mic cable through the A pillar to the driver visor. On the other hand, the pickup quality has to be superior with the visor mounting.

BTW, where does BMW locate the mic in their option package??

Thanks again.

JV
The built in mic is in the overhead (or 3 pin connector if you don't have a mic).
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  #17  
Old 05-18-2009, 10:04 PM
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leeor leeor is offline
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PM me, i sell car stereo, and i ship. Let me know what you need.
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  #18  
Old 05-19-2009, 10:33 AM
loci loci is offline
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With the alpine unit in the specs it states Apline bluetooth adapter for bluetooth connectivity is required, does that mean I need another wire hanging out from the back of the unit? In that case, a ~$300 parrot system just for bluetooth seems like a better option.
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  #19  
Old 05-19-2009, 12:59 PM
loci loci is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loci View Post
With the alpine unit in the specs it states Apline bluetooth adapter for bluetooth connectivity is required, does that mean I need another wire hanging out from the back of the unit? In that case, a ~$300 parrot system just for bluetooth seems like a better option.
The bluetooth adapter for that Alpine is an additional $170.

I was just told by my SA that the warranty on any audio equipment will no longer be covered if I modify anything. That includes the Parrot bluetooth module. In that case, I will probably just go with some external bluetooth speaker/car kit for now and when my warranty is done, I will install an after-market unit for sure.
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  #20  
Old 05-19-2009, 02:37 PM
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Evlengr Evlengr is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by loci View Post
The bluetooth adapter for that Alpine is an additional $170.

I was just told by my SA that the warranty on any audio equipment will no longer be covered if I modify anything. That includes the Parrot bluetooth module. In that case, I will probably just go with some external bluetooth speaker/car kit for now and when my warranty is done, I will install an after-market unit for sure.
He is correct. They can void the warranty on your audio system, but if you look at the pictures of who makes it, who really cares, Lol.
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2013 S4 Loaded (and NO RFT's) Awesome is an understatement
2008 MT X3 RIP you were a faithful sidekick and will be missed.
2007 AT X3 RIPOS
2005 GC
2000 Jeep Cherokee
1997 Twin Turbo RX-7
1984 GTI Wolfsburg Edition Neuspeed and more
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  #21  
Old 05-20-2009, 06:58 AM
loci loci is offline
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He is correct. They can void the warranty on your audio system, but if you look at the pictures of who makes it, who really cares, Lol.
LOL!!
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  #22  
Old 05-20-2009, 07:00 PM
skitime skitime is offline
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After reading this thread, I'm starting to think of changing out the head unit, mainly for a decent Ipod control. I looked at some of the Pioneer and Alpine units, and had a question. I guess they both can use the steeering wheel controls, but what happens with bluetooth? I have it in the car already, would the info still display on the new head unit? Any preferences between Pioneer or Alpine? Thanks!
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  #23  
Old 05-25-2009, 06:10 AM
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sna77 sna77 is offline
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I'll be the lone voice and say it...

I think aftermarket decks look really bad in the X3... I hate how they aren't centered, and there is a big stretch of black plastic that doesn't match anything else in the interior...

- You can route an aux cable wherever you want in the car.
- Adding OEM Bluetooth is $250. It works much better than the Parrot system, and the steering wheel integration / voice recognition is fantastic.
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  #24  
Old 05-25-2009, 10:08 AM
JVergence JVergence is offline
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- Adding OEM Bluetooth is $250. It works much better than the Parrot system, and the steering wheel integration / voice recognition is fantastic.

The price to upgrade my base X3 (no nav, no assist, etc.) with the BMW Bluetooth package is around $700 or so (parts only) so perhaps I've missed something in my research. If so, can someone direct me to an OEM package that only costs $250!?!?

Thanks again.

JV
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  #25  
Old 05-25-2009, 10:56 AM
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sna77 sna77 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JVergence View Post
- Adding OEM Bluetooth is $250. It works much better than the Parrot system, and the steering wheel integration / voice recognition is fantastic.

The price to upgrade my base X3 (no nav, no assist, etc.) with the BMW Bluetooth package is around $700 or so (parts only) so perhaps I've missed something in my research. If so, can someone direct me to an OEM package that only costs $250!?!?

Thanks again.

JV


Sure can... A Bluetooth TCU is only $328 (sorry just looked up exact cost) from the dealer. Gone are the days of needing a $700 Bluetooth ULF.


plug in the latest part # 84109195455 to www.getbmwparts.com
http://www.bimmerboard.com/members/p...artNumbers.pdf

also read the links on www.bimmerboard.com in the Bluetooth section
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