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E36 M3 (1995-1999)

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Old 04-18-2014, 10:41 AM
StellaM3 StellaM3 is offline
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Location: Washington DC
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 1
Mein Auto: 1995 M3
E36 Tablet install

Hello fellow BMWers,
I am new to the forums, and this is my first post, so HI ! I am the proud owner of a metallic daytona violet '95 M3 I got her (Stella) when I was 18... ah yes those were the good old day. "Good ol' days! You drove your car drunk off the road and blew a tire the first day you had it!" Shut up nobody needs to know! "And the next day your recklessly drifted around a roundabout only to find out you pooped yourself!" For the record I did NOT poop myself! Sorry guys, I have an alter ego and he likes to contest me. You'll notice throughout this post and my future post that I have a peculiar way of writing. And FYI things may sometimes be vulgar, fun, stupid and downright hilarious. (actually maybe not so much because my post will immediately be edited by the moderators...I guess freedom of speech got hit by a car, I will do my best to restrain my foul mouth "He's crossing his fingers!" -man why do you always have to rat on me!-) , But I'll do it all in good taste to make for a fun read. "He's full of it, don't read his stuff, your only going to boost his ego!" OK that's it buster one more word and I'm going to kick you in the nuts... " " Damnit! Owe thats going to leave a mark...

Anyways I wanted to share with you a current project I have with my M3. "More like current dismantling" Man why you always got to put me down like that!

So this is my car:

So far my car is as follows:

Borla exhaust, Full headers and pipe
Dinan CAI
Dinan Chip
Bilstein Shocks

Euro headlights
Clear blinkers and side markers
France license plate represent!

Kenwood XR900-5
JL Audio ZR Speakers in the front
Pioneer in the back
JL Audio 2 10w1v2 subs in the trunk
(btw that setup sounds AMAZING, it completely changed the way I perceive road noise and audio in my car)

And my current project is to install an Andoid tablet in place of my stock radio.

So first things first. If you ever want to attempt what I am doing you need to get some hardware and a fair amount of cash. Here is what I got:

- Kenwood XR900-5 - $300
to replace stock amp and run Subs. If you don't want to run subs you can get a 4 channel amp to run the car. I highly recommend changing your car amp, The kenwood is pretty much the same size as the old one and completely changed the acoustics in my car. http://www.crutchfield.com/S-40Elsii...n-XR900-5.html (got mine off ebay for $300)

- 3.5mm to RCA cable - $10
To connect the tablet to the amp you need a 3.5mm to RCA cable. The 3.5mm plugs into the tablet and the RCA into the amps input. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

- RCA Y Splitters X 4 - $20
If you amp has multiple RCA inputs (mine had 6) you need some RCA Y splitters. I needed 4, $5 at radioshack each

- Sescom Volume control - $35
In order to adjust the Volume I put a Sescom volume control which can be found here: http://www.adorama.com/SESESMKP27.html

- Sescom dual Aux Input - $30
I also wanted to have an AUX input in case a friend wants to play his music or i want to play something that is not on the tablet so i got a Sescom A/B Switch which can be found here: http://www.adorama.com/SESESIPODAB.html

- Anker car charger - $15
You need a usb car charger to charge the tablet. I got the following one so I can have 2 chargers on it, one for the tablet and one that will go into the center console to charge my phone : http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...?ie=UTF8&psc=1

- Bezel - $130
Finally you need a new bezel, I found this guy who makes bezels for pretty much ALL BMW to install Carputers or Android tablets. You can find it here: http://www.mybimmer.net/e36carpclcd.htm
The guy who makes these is really great, I sent him a question about it and he responded immediately, and he gives discounts if you do take lots of pictures of your install "wait a minute, is that why your writing this post?" ...No... ...ok you got me! The Bezel is a perfect fit and the build quality is very sturdy, he also supplies basic instructions. I'm very happy with the bezel, thanks Dick!

- Xperia Z Ultra - $360
Oh yea! You are also going to need a android tablet! -edit- Unfortunetly, now that I have measured out the dimensions of the double din, it seems a 7inch android tablet will not fit! You could potentially fit a Nexus 7, but your going to have to do some cutting in places i wouldn't dare... and you would have to get a wireless charger and have the audio run through bluetooth cuz there is no way in hell your going to plug any cables into the nexus 7. But don't fret! There are only solutions in life! "that is not what you said after you measured everything..." -smartass- Well what will fit is a phablet, and as of today the best one I could find that fits is the Sony Xperia Z ultra...and i have no choice but to dish out the extra cash otherwise I'm just going to have a double din with a bezel and a piece of cardboard instead of a tablet. The Sony is going for about $350 used and $450 new on ebay. I'm probably going to get a used one. http://www.sonymobile.com/global-en/...peria-z-ultra/

Ok now moving on to the Install, I will start from the trunk and work my way to the front:

Step 1:
Remove everything from your trunk
Remove carpet over spare tire
Remove spare tire and all surrounding components (that includes plastic cover over battery on right side and plastic cover on the left side also
Remove plastic over left tailight
Lower rear seats
Remove left speaker in trunk
Pull trunk liner on left away
Remove Stock amp
You should now have this:

Step 2:
Find place to mount your new amp
Since I am not the handiest of people and don't know how to built a bracket for an amp or attach the bracket to the car I figured I would cut a hole into the plastic that covers the left side and hope that the amp sits almost flush:

After you verify fitment, take the e36 wiring diagram http://www.*************/forum/attach...-e36stereo.gif and cut the wires you need and connect them to your new amp.
Run a positive terminal from the battery to your amp and ground your amp.
Connect your 3.5mm to rca to the y splitters then the y splitters to your amp input.
Run the 3.5mm cable to the front by following the old audio cables.

Put everything back together and you should have something that looks like this:

Ok now that you have your amp wired up and you should be able to test out your new(ish) sound system, make sure it works. The way I have wired it up means the stock radio is now useless. But thats the whole point because we want to replace it with a tablet.
Now run the 3.5mm cable to your center console. I did it fairly easily. Ran mine by following the stock radio wires through the back seat, then through the back of the rear left hand side door/armrest panel, then through the plastic watchamacallit that runs along the door, at which point I cut under the driver seat and reached the center console. Sorry I have no pics of this. But you really can't see the wire if you run it the way I did.

So let's move to the front of the car. You should have something that looks like this (minus the aftermarket radio which I'm going to trash anyways):

Take it all apart!!!!! This is the not fun part
Take the radio out.
Now pull the hole in the sunglass holder towards you and pop cubby out along with the obc.
Unplug everything.
Now take the turn dials/knobs off the ac control unit, take out the 2 screws behind the knobs and remove the front plate. Now force the ac control unit down so that it is where the obc used to be. Unplug the ac vent control thingy aka ac vent control dudaa "Your an idiot" -that makes you an idiot too!- "at least I dont call objects thingy's and dudaas" -w.e man-
ok at this point I got a little desperate because I couldn't figure out how to remove the radio bracket so I did what any sensible man would do...I used brute force and a dremel and cut the M!@#$%^&* out of there Victory! "Actually not really, your looking at your car completely dismantled" -remember what we said about positive reinforcement? -"Nope"

You should be looking at this:

You should be looking at this:

Ok now your going to have to cut the cubby aka sunglass holder to accommodate the AC control unit. I cut mine like so:

You can also note that I installed that Sescom A/B aux input switch on the cubby next to the seat warmer. and yes i know i installed the switch and aux input too close to each other but i didnt feel like unsoldering and finding some new wire to extend it. I recommend you get a soldering iron if you attempt this though. Im just a lazy F#$@.
Also you'll notice that red switch with the blue light, that is actually a 12v output that the previous owner put in for god knows what reason. Its perfect for that anker usb car charger i bought and it has a switch which will allow me to choose when i want power to the tablet. I plugged in the anker usb charger and ran one cable to the the compartment behind one of my cup holders to charge my phone and I am now waiting on getting the Xperia phablet to run another cable from the anker to where the table is located.

That means you have to remove the glove box on the passenger side and the plastic cover under the steering wheel on the driver side. its like 9-12 screws or so.
With the center console trim out install the Sescom volume control where you want it and connect the 3.5mm cable you ran to the center console to it the output of the volume control. Then run another short 3.5mm cable from the input of the Volume control to your tablet or to the Sescom A/B aux switch if you decide to get one. From the Sescom A/B un a wire to where your tablet will be
Looks like so once you have it all in:

Well there you have it. Reply to the thread if you have any questions. I'll update when I get the xperia and show you the finished product

Last edited by StellaM3; 04-23-2014 at 05:40 PM.
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Old 04-26-2014, 08:59 AM
e4m3 e4m3 is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 26
Mein Auto:
Nice car!

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Old 07-06-2014, 10:34 PM
screwed screwed is offline
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Location: pa
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 6
Mein Auto: E83
Did you get the tablet in?

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