Here's my review of the Avin Avant-2 as fitted to an E39:
Works pretty well. It found all the music, and being able to use the steering wheel controls (which work flawlessly) is fantastic. The major drawback for me is that it doesn't support ogg format, although it is great that flac is supported.
Other gripes are that the interface is quite clunky (especially compared to the Android Kittykat music app) and the progress bar often freeze. Also, it doesn't like playing FLAC songs over 4 minutes long (resulting in a long gap between songs and generally unresponsive behaviour) and it wouldn't recognise the tags or album art for WMA files. Finally, getting the album art working was a nightmare! (I'll give some tips regarding album art in the next post)
Yep, works fine. The animation is pretty naff, but I can't imagine anyone would use it much.
A quick test shows it works fine. Strangely, the disc got hot after a couple of minutes, but maybe this was just a one-off.
From what I gather, there is no nagivation software supplied, so it is up to the user to install an android app. This unit had MapFactor Navigation installed, and it is pretty bad. Firstly the keyboard covers all but one line of results on the search screen, which makes it a pain if you are searching for a word that shares the first few letters with another word! And in general, the interface takes a lot of learning, with many of the key functions hidden in obscure places. Also, the voice volume cannot be adjusted separately to the music, so if you are listening to a quiet song, the nav instructions will be blasted at you very loud. Lastly, the choice of route is pretty bad, often choosing a very indirect or congested route.
Apparently the Nokia Here Maps are quite good, so I will report back once I've tried that out. (I need navigation that works without a data connection, so that rules out Google Maps)
I haven't used the bluetooth phone connection much, but it seems to work ok.
This is the highlight of the system! Streaming audio from your phone works brilliantly, especially with being able to control it via the steering wheel. It would be nice if album art showed up, but it doesn't really matter.
It works especially well in conjunction when Car Dashdroid is installed on your phone. This app is a convenient homepage while driving, which has some handy functions such as setting the volume level when it starts, and the app can be automatically started when the phone connects to the Avant's bluetooth.
The screen is big and the image is pretty clear, so it works well. Although the guide lines don't align to the edge of the car, they are still handy for working out how close to the gutter you are parking. Also, the option to turn down the stereo volume while reversing is handy, so that you can hear the parking sensors.
OBD live data
I don't have a bluetooth OBD transmitter, so I haven't used this feature.
The basic tone adjustment controls is a half-baked 3 band equaliser, which I don't like.
The 10 band equaliser (in advanced settings) is a bit fiddly to use, but gives much better control. (Note that the advanced equaliser only works when SoundFX is on... I spent ages trying to work out why changing the settings made no difference to the sound!)
The ability to turn off the screen, with the system still running, is a very nice feature. As mentioned before, the steering wheel controls work perfectly, which is great. It is also nice that most of the functions (although, strangely, not bluetooth) have dedicated buttons next to the screen, because scrolling through them all (using the Source button) is a bit clunky.
The reversing camera seems to take its power from the rear numberplate light, so it triggers a "Check numplate light" error on the dash.
The overall styling suits the E39 dash very nicely. I think it looks quite "factory".
To conclude, there are a few gripes, but overall I am happy with the audio side of things. Hopefully a change of nav software will make a big improvement to the navigation side of things.