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E60 (2004 - 2010)
BMW 5-Series (E60 chassis) was first seen in the Unites States in the fall of 2003 with a 2004 Model Year designation. The E60 is now available as a 528i, 528xi, 535i, 535xi, 550i and a 535xi sports wagon! -- View the E60 Wiki

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  #676  
Old 04-08-2009, 09:53 AM
Boris13 Boris13 is offline
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After reading this entire (very helpful) thread, I think I'll be doing what Stream did in post #1. Not comfortable with forking out the $$$ for an interface that is not what it should be. I'll be waiting for a hopeful 6FL retro in the future.

QUESTION:
I have an '07 530 with the factory aux jack in the rear of the center console. Is it possible to "hard wire" a setup like Stream did from that rear aux jack? I'd like to have the iPod hidden as well as the wiring it's attached too. Has anyone done this yet from the rear location?

New to the BMW world, and have really enjoyed all the helpful info on this and other threads.
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  #677  
Old 04-08-2009, 11:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boris13 View Post
After reading this entire (very helpful) thread, I think I'll be doing what Stream did in post #1. Not comfortable with forking out the $$$ for an interface that is not what it should be. I'll be waiting for a hopeful 6FL retro in the future.

QUESTION:
I have an '07 530 with the factory aux jack in the rear of the center console. Is it possible to "hard wire" a setup like Stream did from that rear aux jack? I'd like to have the iPod hidden as well as the wiring it's attached too. Has anyone done this yet from the rear location?

New to the BMW world, and have really enjoyed all the helpful info on this and other threads.
Hardwiring the power supply would be the same. For the aux connection, I'd unscrew the aux from the rear panel, so you could connect the cable to it inside the center console (you could fill the hole with a small rubber plug), and run the cable to the center arm rest compartment, like I did.
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  #678  
Old 04-08-2009, 11:35 AM
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WillInDenver WillInDenver is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boris13 View Post
After reading this entire (very helpful) thread, I think I'll be doing what Stream did in post #1. Not comfortable with forking out the $$$ for an interface that is not what it should be. I'll be waiting for a hopeful 6FL retro in the future.
Not to mention that there is, IMO, substantial risk that future iPods will be incompatible with the existing interface. You'll always be able to plug in a 3.5mm jack, and if you use a line-out solution with your iPod, the sound quality is the same as with the iPod interface.
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  #679  
Old 04-08-2009, 02:03 PM
Boris13 Boris13 is offline
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Besides the cool/convenience factor of selecting songs with the iDrive, it would be hard to part with the asking price for access to only about a 1/3 of the songs. Rearranging the aux seems like a pretty good bang for the buck right now. Maybe down the line, they will have a better interface more capable of mimicking the iPod.

With the rear installed aux, I'm guessing there is the same config of capacitors and resister that would need to be removed?
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  #680  
Old 04-08-2009, 02:57 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boris13 View Post
Besides the cool/convenience factor of selecting songs with the iDrive, it would be hard to part with the asking price for access to only about a 1/3 of the songs. Rearranging the aux seems like a pretty good bang for the buck right now. Maybe down the line, they will have a better interface more capable of mimicking the iPod.

With the rear installed aux, I'm guessing there is the same config of capacitors and resister that would need to be removed?
Not sure, but I'd guess so--you'll be able to tell once you remove the rear panel, and see if there's a bulge in the harness.
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  #681  
Old 04-13-2009, 01:38 PM
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Boostaroo just released a 12V version of their line signal amplifier. I have bought one and am going to try it with my auxiliary input.

I removed the capacitors when I installed the aux, per Stream's instructions in this thread. But I still find that the auxiliary signal level is very low compared to the level of the CD player. I had been using MP3Gain to increase the DB level of my MP3 files (to a target of 94db or so), which was working well for me until I started noticing all of the clipping that was happening because of that increase - according to MP3Gain, as much as 75% of my 4000 song library was clipping! So I backed the level down to a target 91db and told MP3Gain not to process any song that would clip even at that signal level.

So, no more clipping, but back to a very low signal level. And the amplifier in the standard audio system is a little anemic, so I was finding myself driving around with the volume pegged all the time, which introduces distortion from the amp and just does not sound good.

Hopefully the Boostaroo will enable me to even up the signal levels between the auxiliary input and the other sound sources in the system. You may be asking why I am not concerned that the signal will clip with the Boostaroo when I use it, if the same music were clipping before at a higher signal level? Different preamp - MP3Gain was causing the iPod processor to clip, not the preamp in the BMW stereo system. I am pretty confident that there is some headroom available on that auxiliary input, from where it is now. But I could be wrong. I will report back.

Edit: I am convinced, by the way, that the iPod clips much earlier than it should. Most of the high-quality music I download sits at about the 95-97dB level, and causes clipping in the iPod as it is delivered. Even targeting 91 dB with MP3Gain, I have to leave about 20% of my library alone because it would STILL clip even at that level. This seems to be a design flaw with the iPod's processor. If the iPod could handle music at the 95-97 dB level, I would probably not be bothering with this.
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Last edited by WillInDenver; 04-17-2009 at 09:55 AM.
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  #682  
Old 04-17-2009, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WJGreer View Post
Boostaroo just released a 12V version of their line signal amplifier. I have bought one and am going to try it with my auxiliary input.
I have it and have experimented with it briefly. Initial observations:
  • Sound quality is very good. It effectively increases the iPod's gain level to match (but not exceed) that of the CD player and radio inputs, whereas without it the Aux input is noticeably lower in gain level (see my post above).
  • The BMW stereo has no trouble with the increased level of the boostarooed signal. It sounds clean.
  • The additional gain is noticeable but does not sound like a 4X increase as the boostaroo website suggests. FWIW, I don't think 4X would be useful anyway, as it would probably overdrive the preamp on the BMW stereo. It's fine as it is.
  • It does not work well with the line out on my Ten Technologies FlexibleDock. When used in that combination, I get an extreme amount of mechanical and electronic noise through the line. The FlexDock's line out circuitry is housed right next to its cigarette lighter power source; I suspect that this introduces more noise than the boostaroo's noise filter can handle. However, none of this noise is present when I use the iPod headphone output with the boostaroo, even when the iPod is plugged into and receiving power from FlexDock. I may or may not look for a different line out solution.
  • The boostaroo comes with a cigarette lighter power source of its own. For testing purposes, I plugged that into the extra power outlet below the glove compartment. This cannot be my permanent solution, however. I will need to hide the boostaroo and its power cord below my ashtray inside of the center console area. This will require me to remove the cigarette lighter plug on the boostaroo's power cord and splice the cord into another power source that I find down there - probably the one that leads to the cig lighter next to the ashtray. Boostaroo makes it clear that the fuse and the noise suppressor is inside of the Boostaroo and not in the cig lighter plug, and that it is OK to remove the plug in order to splice the cord onto an existing 12V cord. However, doing this in the past I've had flawless experiences as well as experiences where I could never get the power to work right, so I am a little nervous.
Does anyone have good instructions for removing the center panel that surrounds the shifter, ashtray, iDrive knob, etc? Actually I would like to polish that if I can get it out of the car anyway.
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Last edited by WillInDenver; 04-17-2009 at 09:56 AM.
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  #683  
Old 04-17-2009, 10:05 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WJGreer View Post
Does anyone have good instructions for removing the center panel that surrounds the shifter, ashtray, iDrive knob, etc? Actually I would like to polish that if I can get it out of the car anyway.
See below.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf gear selector trim removal.pdf (126.2 KB, 214 views)
File Type: pdf gear selector trim removal 2.pdf (514.9 KB, 380 views)
File Type: pdf storage tray.pdf (201.6 KB, 212 views)
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  #684  
Old 04-17-2009, 10:16 AM
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^ Awesome. Thanks.
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  #685  
Old 04-26-2009, 05:59 AM
tcolv tcolv is offline
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Done

Stream- Thanks for your help. AUX part arrived and I installed it per your excellent instructions in the other thread. I ended up putting the port in the back of a small parcel tray where your CD/DVD slot is (my car doesn't have this) so the wire and the ipod/XM receiver sit nicely in there and I can get to it without having to fish it out of the glove box.

Took it to the dealer to get coded and he apparently felt my pain with having just charged me $550 for the ipod kit and did the coding for no charge. Works great.
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  #686  
Old 04-26-2009, 08:03 AM
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Originally Posted by tcolv View Post
Stream- Thanks for your help. AUX part arrived and I installed it per your excellent instructions in the other thread. I ended up putting the port in the back of a small parcel tray where your CD/DVD slot is (my car doesn't have this) so the wire and the ipod/XM receiver sit nicely in there and I can get to it without having to fish it out of the glove box.

Took it to the dealer to get coded and he apparently felt my pain with having just charged me $550 for the ipod kit and did the coding for no charge. Works great.
Good deal!
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  #687  
Old 05-07-2009, 04:37 AM
vrmoreno3 vrmoreno3 is offline
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I took my 06 530 to the dealer yesterday to have the ipod unit installed. After 9 grueling hours they came back and told me the software update did not take. Something to do with the original equipment at the time the car was produced did not match the update??? Anyway, they said it appeared to never have been updated. They loaned me a 3 series and told me they would deliver mine when they got it working again. I live three hours away. I hope this was worth the install.
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  #688  
Old 05-07-2009, 10:44 AM
vrmoreno3 vrmoreno3 is offline
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How sweet is this. Since my car is still under warranty, the software upgrade was no charge for the ipod. I only had to pay for parts and installation. They in route now.
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  #689  
Old 05-20-2009, 10:36 AM
steveo90290 steveo90290 is offline
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I'm hoping for the 6fl retro soon. I don't want to spend good money after bad. The aux input might be an option for me, or i'll continue suffering with my RF adapter. Any new news on 6fl?
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  #690  
Old 05-21-2009, 01:17 PM
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My Boostaroo experiment has come to an end. When I used it with my FlexibleDock, the dock passed electronic whine through to the system that was intolerable. I switched to a spec.dock, which was not a simple installation but boy do I dig the stealth effect it provides. The spec.dock is a better piece of electronics altogether than the FlexibleDock, as well. It passes no noise at all from the iPod - quiet as a whisper. But, using it, I began to notice that the Boostaroo was passing a clipped signal. I thought perhaps the Boostaroo's amplification, plus some line amplification that the spec.dock might provide was clipping the head unit. But when I ran headphone tests on the audio coming out of the Boostaroo, I found that it was clipping even when not connected to the spec.dock. So it's going back.

I have focused my attention on upgrading the stereo in other areas. I had previously installed the Bavarian Soundwerks Stage 1 upgrade, which replaces all of the speakers except the under-seat subs. That upgrade is an improvement, but only an incremental one as it really exposes the insufficiency of the subs and amp in the basic E60 system.

I then discovered that Earthquake audio makes some 8" shallow subwoofers that are drop-in replacements for the factory 6.5" subs under the seats (they are 8" subs with the Logic system). I acquired a pair and have so far had the chance to install one of them under the driver's seat. This upgrade appears to have a dramatic effect improving the low-midbass presence in the car. I am excited to get the other one in over the long weekend. There is still an issue with amplifier power though, as the whole system sounds good but just will not get very loud at all.

I have also discovered that Blaupunkt makes a line of amplifiers designed to enhance factory stereos without requiring a lot of modification to internals and wiring. In fact, they sell a line of companion cables that are plug and play to the Blaupunkt amp on one end and the head unit from the factory system on the other, making the whole installation process dramatically easier. So I bought the version of the amp that will send 50 watts to each of my 4" speakers and 300 to the two under-seat subs. As soon as it (and the E60 cable) arrive, I'll get that in there. If that does nothing but enable a higher volume level at the same quality of sound I hear right now, it will be a resounding success.
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  #691  
Old 05-22-2009, 03:24 AM
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Something I read stated that either a CD changer or CD changer prep was required for the iPod kit, which makes sense based on how it works.

I just ordered a 2007 530xi with the Logic7 upgrade (without the changer); does anyone know if my car will have the CD changer "prep" necessary for the iPod kit?
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  #692  
Old 05-22-2009, 09:41 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MVMASOFT.COM View Post
Something I read stated that either a CD changer or CD changer prep was required for the iPod kit, which makes sense based on how it works.

I just ordered a 2007 530xi with the Logic7 upgrade (without the changer); does anyone know if my car will have the CD changer "prep" necessary for the iPod kit?
There are specific non-prewired iPod kits for those that were not equipped with CD Changer prewiring. The mObridge kits do some with this wiring if you that particular route.
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  #693  
Old 05-27-2009, 05:58 AM
MSAMMY MSAMMY is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WJGreer View Post
Not to mention that there is, IMO, substantial risk that future iPods will be incompatible with the existing interface. You'll always be able to plug in a 3.5mm jack, and if you use a line-out solution with your iPod, the sound quality is the same as with the iPod interface.
Yep. it happened to me. All was fine with my 80GB iPod and then I went out and purchased an iPhone. Guess what, the BMW interface isn't compatible with the 3G iPhone. You can play tunes, but the interface won't charge the phone. So, my 80GB is back in the glove box for now, and my iPhone, well, is just a phone!
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  #694  
Old 06-02-2009, 02:07 PM
Chestah Cheetah Chestah Cheetah is offline
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Newbie here. I have an '04 545 with a bulid date of 3/04. No Navigation or Auxilary input, however, I DO have a 6 disc changer.

I did read through most of this thread and came up with a couple of questions:

1) I was told the BMW Ipod interface WILL work with my vehicle by the dealer parts rep, however, it seems as though others are having diffulty with. Anyone here have an '04 545I who has installed it? Did it require programming?

2) I do have an IPhone as well would like the option of playing/charging that also. Any "adapters" put there to make it work?

Thanks.
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  #695  
Old 06-22-2009, 03:12 PM
starrpwr starrpwr is offline
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Unhappy New 3.0 Software update for iPod Touch--BIG PROBLEM!

The new 3.0 software update for iPod Touch renders the device INCOMPATIBLE with my '08 535xi factory-installed iPod option. No music! All the device does is get charged when plugged into the jack. BMW has no idea when they'll receive a patch from Apple to render compatibility. BEWARE of this 3.0 "update".
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  #696  
Old 06-22-2009, 06:27 PM
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WillInDenver WillInDenver is online now
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Originally Posted by starrpwr View Post
The new 3.0 software update for iPod Touch renders the device INCOMPATIBLE with my '08 535xi factory-installed iPod option. No music! All the device does is get charged when plugged into the jack. BMW has no idea when they'll receive a patch from Apple to render compatibility. BEWARE of this 3.0 "update".
Precisely the point I made here. Sorry you are going through that.
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  #697  
Old 06-25-2009, 08:46 AM
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After reading this entire (very helpful) thread, I think I'll be doing what Stream did in post #1. Not comfortable with forking out the $$$ for an interface that is not what it should be. I'll be waiting for a hopeful 6FL retro in the future.
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  #698  
Old 06-26-2009, 02:21 AM
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I have hit a snag with the BMW software as it will no longer load any music files from my iPod.

I have an 80G iPod with music (about 1,000 songs), music videos, video podcasts, downloaded .jpg files. Up until a few weeks ago, it loaded the music just fine, but now won't load at all.

It appears that the BMW software doesn't know how to isolate just the .mp3 files (which are within the published limits) and is instead trying to load everything.

I took it into the dealer and they have no fix except "delete everything except the music" which is totally unacceptable. He said there is a fixed memory limit to what can be loaded, but did not give me any more detail
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  #699  
Old 07-08-2009, 08:22 PM
mikewils mikewils is offline
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iPod and aux

Quote:
Originally Posted by WJGreer View Post
The bad news is that your '04 came standard with neither the Aux input nor the iPod interface, which is why you can't find an Aux. The good news is that you can have one installed in addition to the iPod interface - but you'll have to pay for it again, sort of. The Aux input installation is not as expensive as the iPod interface, though. There are price stories in this thread; I recall I paid about $60 for the part plus maybe $120 or so for the installation.

One more bit of good news - you could make yourself feel a little better about having the Aux input installed by thinking about the other things you could plug into it...an XM receiver for example.
So you're saying that it is possible to have both the iPod adapter and the aux jack? My dealer told me it wasn't! If they were wrong, that would be a very good thing as I need both ideally. I hope you are right.
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  #700  
Old 08-09-2009, 01:32 PM
tyt215 tyt215 is offline
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Well i was quoted 500$ for Ipod Interface by BMW Manhattan

When u guys say i pod AUX input doe s that mean that u ll be able to control ipod from I-Drive or only from Ipod.??? Have u guys heard about GATEWAY hardware it costs about 400$ is that worth it
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