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X3 E83 (2004 - 2010)
Talk about the E83 BMW X3 in this forum!

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  #1  
Old 03-09-2014, 04:30 PM
Hatzenbach Hatzenbach is offline
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Location: California
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 64
Mein Auto: 2006 X3 & 2009 Carrera
Installed OEM looking aftermarket navigation

For the longest time I had a TomTom GPS hanging from my windshield. However, I prefer a clean look and theoretically the cops in CA could ticket you for a suction device on your windshield.

For quite some time I was having an eye the Chinese aftermarket GPS units on eBay which go for around $400, but I wasn't sure if that would just get me a piece of junk. Eventually I pulled the trigger and here's my review.

I bought the unit for around $375 (incl. shipping) and it arrived within a week.
The unit has the following functionality
* Navigation
* Bluetooth
* ability to play music/videos from a USB stick

I am only using #1 and #2

You retain full radio functionality, the unit has it's own speakers which are surprisingly powerful. So the unit and the BMW radio operate completely independent.

There were absolutely no instructions included, but it's totally straight forward.

Remove the center cubby in the dashboard.
Remove the radio
Unplug the big plug in the back of the radio
The new GPS comes with a new plug which goes between the radio and the BMW plug which plugged into the radio, plug it in
Install the microphone for the bluetooth, route the cable, put everything back and you're done.

Depending on how much work you put into hiding the microphone cable it will take you between 1 and 2 hours. In terms of technical difficulty it's maybe a 3 / 10

The fit is perfect it looks 100% OEM (see pictures)

So how does it work?
For the navigation it came with iGO Primo, which looks better and has more features than the OEM navigation in my 2009 Porsche :-)
The bluetooth works OK (my OEM bluetooth recently died, so I was happy to get this functionality back as a bonus)

I also installed a rear view camera and the unit switches to the camera as soon as I go into reverse (it's activated by the reverse signal). This is not included with the package, you need to buy the needed devices separately.

Any drawbacks?
a) I have a hard time to believe that the included iGO Primo software is legit (the seller declared it as "demo software"), I work for a software company and am opposed to software piracy, so I bought a legit copy of iGO Primo for $30
b) the iGO software needs a bit of fine tuning in the config file to not run into an "out of memory" error (If anyone needs it I am happy to supply the changes in my config file)
c) the bluetooth quality is just so so

Would I buy it again?
Absolutely!
I love the OEM look, the quality of the navigation, the fact that I have bluetooth and I love the rear view feature
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Last edited by Hatzenbach; 03-09-2014 at 07:46 PM.
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  #2  
Old 03-10-2014, 07:54 AM
morriswu morriswu is offline
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Location: Taiwan
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 20
Mein Auto: MB R129, BMW X3
Very impressive

Hi Hatzenbach;
I am very impressed by your device, and it lookslike the really OEM!
Also I am interested in it and would like to buy one. Can you passthe information of the seller?
Thanks in advance.
regards,
morriswu
__________________
-------------------------------------------------------
1983 BMW E30 316 1.8
1992 M Benz W201 190E 2.6
1992 MBenz R129 300SL-24
2005 BMW E83 X3 3.0i
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  #3  
Old 03-10-2014, 08:35 AM
christoforos christoforos is offline
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Mein Auto: BMW X3 mpack 3.0si
Nice I have the same. Dynavin is the brand!!
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  #4  
Old 03-10-2014, 08:02 PM
joylove joylove is offline
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Posts: 668
Mein Auto: 08 e83 LCI
Other options are available too if you want to go down that route.

http://www.bimmerfest.com/forums/sho....php?p=7762443
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  #5  
Old 03-11-2014, 07:55 AM
Hatzenbach Hatzenbach is offline
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Location: California
 
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Posts: 64
Mein Auto: 2006 X3 & 2009 Carrera
Quote:
Originally Posted by morriswu View Post
Hi Hatzenbach;
I am very impressed by your device, and it lookslike the really OEM!
Also I am interested in it and would like to buy one. Can you passthe information of the seller?
Thanks in advance.
regards,
morriswu
Just search in eBay for the term "BMW X3 navigation" and you'll find several sellers who offer them
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  #6  
Old 03-11-2014, 09:23 PM
morriswu morriswu is offline
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Location: Taiwan
 
Join Date: Oct 2010
Posts: 20
Mein Auto: MB R129, BMW X3
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hatzenbach View Post
Just search in eBay for the term "BMW X3 navigation" and you'll find several sellers who offer them
Thanks for the advise.
regards,
morriswu
__________________
-------------------------------------------------------
1983 BMW E30 316 1.8
1992 M Benz W201 190E 2.6
1992 MBenz R129 300SL-24
2005 BMW E83 X3 3.0i
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  #7  
Old 03-13-2014, 04:56 PM
Jo3Mull3n Jo3Mull3n is offline
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Location: Dallas
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 14
Mein Auto: 2006 x3 2.5i
I just bought the same unit, after I did extensive research and believe that these units are the best option considering my/ the vehicle is 6 years old (less than 75k) and they aren't too expensive

I agree with @hatzenbach the unit is very nice, very easy to set up, looks OEM, navigation is fully functional (and even better than expected) Bluetooth works ok (although i am still using my DICE-Mediabridge because it routes audio through the car speakers, but, more on that later) and even displays BMW logo on startup AND in the main menu which is very very clean.

BUT I am hoping to get any input regarding #3 on our list

Quote:
* ability to play music/videos from a USB stick
And let me sat this has proved to be a MAJOR major issue so far, as the system doesn't seem to recognize file folder structure at all... WHAT THE HECK!?!

SO FAR... It displays all the songs one after the other, all they way down 32GBs (about 547 pages of songs?) Yeah right!

My setup is a little different cuz I have audio from the navigation playing through the car speakers (as I said I have a DICE-Mediabridge in the center console and i was able to route the 1/8" output from the unit with a 6' extension down into the aux input on the Mediabridge) PROUD ! So the next phase of the plan is to load it up with music and let it rip, right?

547 pages of songs, one after the other overlooking which artist/ album folder they come from?

I had a crappy $100 unit on a Honda that could do that no problem so I'm a bit ..."confused" LOL

In windows explorer I have about 100 artist folders, and lets say, on average, each artist has 3 albums. so we are looking at 300 albums give or take. My root folder would be "artist", and then under "artist"-> "album", and then under "album" the "songs". My ultimate goal is to have the NAV do the same, or at least ONE level of folder structure (i.e. "Album"->"songs") then i can just organize them that way.

I have already reformatted the USB drive to FAT32, same issue, and the unit doesnt even recognize NTFS. (dont worry i didnt know anything about these fomats until i hit the forums) did a couple of little experiments loading an album (10 songs) to the root folder, then the same to a first level folder (album->songs), and then going all the way down (artist->album->songs) end result was three copies of the album listed song after song (30 songs no seperation)

I know this is a LOOOOONG post, but i hate the inevitable, "could you please be more specific about your problem" follow ups just because they just waste everybodys time LOL

Figured this was a good thread get into this issue since we are taking about the same aftermarket unit

and if anyone has any ideas on how i can get the unit to recognize file folders i would be sincerely grateful. Thank you



P.S. I looking for help on THIS UNIT for the e83 X3 not for any of the other dynavin units, this one seems to be specific to our cars, it doesnt even look the same as alot of other dynavins
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  #8  
Old 03-15-2014, 10:32 AM
Totte Totte is offline
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Location: Mexico City
 
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Posts: 122
Mein Auto: E83 X3 2.5si (2009)
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jo3Mull3n View Post
And let me sat this has proved to be a MAJOR major issue so far, as the system doesn't seem to recognize file folder structure at all... WHAT THE HECK!?!
Just a guess as I don't own a Dynawin but maybe you can use store data about artist/album/etc. inside each MP3 file instead - my Garmin GPS uses this information and not the file structure itself...
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  #9  
Old 03-16-2014, 07:49 AM
Jo3Mull3n Jo3Mull3n is offline
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Location: Dallas
 
Join Date: May 2013
Posts: 14
Mein Auto: 2006 x3 2.5i
Yeah torte that's what I will probably end up doing just wanted to vent about that a little bit, but all and all not too bad if you don't mind organizng iTunes all day lol. Thanks
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  #10  
Old 03-18-2014, 11:47 AM
munki3b0i munki3b0i is offline
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Location: Oakland
 
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Mein Auto: 2007 BMW X3
to the OP, what backup camera did you get?
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  #11  
Old 03-18-2014, 08:41 PM
Hatzenbach Hatzenbach is offline
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Location: California
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 64
Mein Auto: 2006 X3 & 2009 Carrera
Quote:
Originally Posted by munki3b0i View Post
to the OP, what backup camera did you get?
I found a backup camera which replaces one of the license plate lights. So it looks very OEM. It was around $45 it feeds into a wireless transmitter which send the video signal to a wireless receiver up front. The wireless transmitter / receiver was from eBay and was like $20.

Sounds easy? It was a major pain to install, here's why:
a) so you remove the license plate light, snap in the backup camera, route the cables and you're done ? Not so easy: the backup camera didn't fit very well into the opening of the license plate light. At the end it was brute force: I had to physically break out the electrical connections for the lamps and then it still didn't fit and instead of snapping in, I had to screw the camera in. If you don't know where to look, you won't see it, but it's not a good looking job and it's not reversible.
b) the reason why I went wireless was so that I didn't have to pull cables from the back to the front. Well The wireless connection is awesome it works great, BUT the navigation unit has this feature that it switches to the reverse camera as soon as it senses a signal on the video input. Unfortunately the wireless receiver is always powered on, so the unit senses a signal all the time, meaning the unit is in permanent backup camera mode, even when you go forward.
So I had to pull a cable from the backup light to the front to power the receiver. No reverse light, no power, means the unit only goes into backup camera mode when it should. I took my time with the cable and it's completely invisible.

Total time to install the backup camera and all the trimmings: give yourself 4 to 6 hours
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  #12  
Old 03-22-2014, 10:35 AM
Timpano65 Timpano65 is offline
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Mein Auto: 2008 BMW X3
love the work you did.. came out great.


My only question is, did it effect the AUX play? It says it plays audio through a USB stick - I just want to make sure that I can still use my auxiliary cable with my phone instead of utilizing the USB


Thanks
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  #13  
Old 03-23-2014, 11:26 AM
Hatzenbach Hatzenbach is offline
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Location: California
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 64
Mein Auto: 2006 X3 & 2009 Carrera
Quote:
Originally Posted by Timpano65 View Post
love the work you did.. came out great.


My only question is, did it effect the AUX play? It says it plays audio through a USB stick - I just want to make sure that I can still use my auxiliary cable with my phone instead of utilizing the USB


Thanks
Thanks :-)

Hmmm,

I wouldn't be able to tell, as I am using a DICE kit for the iPOD and not AUX, but considering that DICE is probably using the AUX input, I guess it works ;-)

A bit more detail:
The general idea is that the unit does not "mess" with the existing features of the OEM radio. As i described earlier there is this plug which sits in the middle between the OEM radio and the original plug which goes into the radio.
The only purpose of the plug is to route power to the new unit and all other signal wires should be patched through.
I say "should" as I just figured out that the "phone audio in" pins are NOT patched through, and that was the reason why Bluetooth stopped working for me.
I found a simple workaround to make that work again. I believe that the AUX pins were patched through (see above).
However, in case that the AUX pins are not patched through, the same workaround would AUX also make work again.

Last edited by Hatzenbach; 03-23-2014 at 11:27 AM.
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