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Discussion Starter #1
Looking for a good handsfree set that integrates nicely, without too much visual interference with my dashboard. My e39 is extremely clean and any drilling is absolutely excluded.

Parrot seems to make som good ones.
Been looking at the MKI9200.
Think I will be going for a brodit proclip to hold my phone.

Would be cool if the system could somehow use the already build in microphone.
Anyone has experience with that?
Dont want to change the radio to any of the Dynawin stuff, so that option is out too.

Have been searching a lot for a solution to this.
Your input is very welcome.
 

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Short version
You can also research Grom Audio, USASpec, and Dice(now Audiovox).
I know the Mediabridge has bluetooth streaming and the option to mount a microphone in the OEM location on headliner so everything is hidden and looks OEM. I think the others have those features as well.
Note: if you do go with Dice my advice is to get a USB based product, not a mini serial port based one.

Long Version
There must be more options now than when I was looking 5+ years ago, but those are the ones I know. I only have experience with the Dice Mediabridge (which looks like it is discontinued). The Mediabridge bundle I got included a microphone that I place in the OEM location on headliner. It is the slotted plastic plug in the attached pic. I am 90% sure you can connect a microphone to the Grom. I think you can connect a microphone to the USA spec, but I am not sure.

Dice has definitely had a lot of complaints over the years and I was a little hesitant to get a Dice product. But ended up choosing it over the other two companies. My Mediabridge has worked well for me. I have had to reset it (by unplugging the connector in the trunk) once or twice and other than that it has worked well. I think some other people have had more trouble with it, but I think it may be much more reliable than Dice's prior products. I will let others weigh in on that.

Keep in mind I bought my mediabridge mainly for iPod integration versus bluetooth phone/music streaming (5+ years ago). I got a dock to fit in the ashtray for my iPod nano and used that as my main music system. The fact that it had bluetooth streaming capabilities was more of a bonus to me at the time. I am glad I have that feature now, as I can just stream music from my phone, answer phone calls, and get gps directions from my phone played through the car's speakers.

I am not sure if you can find new Mediabridges for sale still or if there is a comparable replacement from Dice/audiovox. But if you do get Dice/Audivox product my advice would be to get a unit that has a usb plug on the device itself versus a mini 8 pin serial plug. I think my concern was to avoid having random dropped iPod connections, and being able to pick up my iPod from the dock then plug it back in with the system without issues, and have better reliability for charging the iPod. I felt the usb was a hot-swappable connection versus serial which was not so the unit should have less issues. I am not sure if it was that aspect or some other software/hardwire aspect, but based my research, feedback from others (a few years ago), and my experience the usb based mediabridge has been much much more reliable than serial port based Dice units which sounded like total nightmares. I have not really payed much attention to current offerings though so you will have to do your own research on current offerings from those three manufacturers.
 

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BMW: Freude am Fahren
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GROM is what I installed on mine. No modifications required on the dash, the unit is installed in the trunk to replace the CD changer hookup. Ran the microphone form the trunk to the stock mic location, did need to get an extension mic cable as the supplied one was too short. GROM also makes an adapter to make it DSP compatible. Real happy with it, great sound, with steering wheel functionality and 100% stock looking dash.

Thought hard about the Dynavin myself, but you would loose the factory OBC panel and it's functionality.
 

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Turn off the phone and drive the car!

If you want to babble on the phone, get a driver or Uber!
 

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Ya'll are going to laugh at me, but I have the previous generation (x2) of this
https://smile.amazon.com/GOgroove-FlexSMART-Bluetooth-Transmitter-Hands-free/dp/B00BMYQTYE/

It works like a champ. I use it in my truck too with the line in and it works even better, so if you have an aux jack you're even more set.

In my case, I have an Intravee iPod adapter and love how it interfaces with the PCM and didn't want to give that functionality up.

There are different models with and without the flexy arm that might work better, just lookup FlexSmart on Amazon.

Scott
 

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My Audiovox / Dice Mediabridge stopped working a few weeks ago. When I first put it in last November everything was great (although it is a little tricky to switch from bluetooth to aux to USB) and I was happy with it.

Today I took it out of the car to try and update the firmware but the audiovox webpage does not have any files on it's firmware page to download. Sounds like they discontinued the product.

I like keeping the car original but it might be time for one of those Chinese head units...
 

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That is obnoxious. At the very least tell people you are not going to support the product with any further updates, but keep the old firmware up there.

OP, based on that info and Audiovox's/Dice's current product lineup I would not go the Audiovox/Dice route.

Topaz, check out the nbt retrofit info. It is very expensive, but it is a kinda cool OEM update.
 

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That is obnoxious. At the very least tell people you are not going to support the product with any further updates, but keep the old firmware up there.

OP, based on that info and Audiovox's/Dice's current product lineup I would not go the Audiovox/Dice route.

Topaz, check out the nbt retrofit info. It is very expensive, but it is a kinda cool OEM update.
Thanks for the lead on NBT Retrofit. I checked out their website and have messaged them for info.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Thanks SOLO12 for the input really usefull. I seem to still be able to get the DICE product.
They seem to have some complaints about the streaming quality. Music sounding dull.
Did you experience any of this?

One question for FW FW.
Does it mean that the GROM unit disables the CD unit?
GROM also sound like an attractive alternative.

Thanks again, Jacob
 

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Not as fancy or well known as some of the others, but I was looking to do the same and found reference to this http://www.ebay.com/itm/Car-USB-SD-AUX-MP3-CD-changer-adapter-BMW-E39-E38-Business-Cassette-round-pin-/121557656221?vxp=mtr&hash=item1c4d66a29d

I just installed one and it works well. Provides audio via bluetooth, cable, or SD card. Also retains some steering wheel functions. I cannot vouch for the phone integration because I haven't used it - but it does have the capability and comes with a small microphone. Overall a pretty good option for under $100.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Not as fancy or well known as some of the others, but I was looking to do the same and found reference to this http://www.ebay.com/itm/Car-USB-SD-AUX-MP3-CD-changer-adapter-BMW-E39-E38-Business-Cassette-round-pin-/121557656221?vxp=mtr&hash=item1c4d66a29d

I just installed one and it works well. Provides audio via bluetooth, cable, or SD card. Also retains some steering wheel functions. I cannot vouch for the phone integration because I haven't used it - but it does have the capability and comes with a small microphone. Overall a pretty good option for under $100.
Cool unit ! :)
 

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Thanks SOLO12 for the input really usefull. I seem to still be able to get the DICE product.
They seem to have some complaints about the streaming quality. Music sounding dull.
Did you experience any of this?

One question for FW FW.
Does it mean that the GROM unit disables the CD unit?
GROM also sound like an attractive alternative.

Thanks again, Jacob
Dice
Since Dice/Audiovox does not seem to be supporting the medibridge anymore I would not recommend getting one. Maybe if you are able to buy one very very very cheap. Even then realize that if you run into any problems it appears there is no firmware support from them anymore.

To answer your question though, yes there is a difference in streaming audio quality vs. being plugged in via USB. The streaming volume is lower and the sound is not quite as clear. It is similar, but not as pronounced as the difference in FM versus using the business cd player. You know if you are listening to the radio and then switch over to the cd player the and leave the volume at the same level the music will now be much louder and clearer.

I have tried listening to the same song streaming through my phone and then through my iPod nano connected to the medibridge via USB. When I switch to the USB from the bluetooth the audio was louder and clearer through the USB connection. As I said before it is not as much of a difference as fm radio vs cd, but there is a difference. Also keep in mind the bluetooth is still louder and clearer than the fm radio.
fyi I am using an iPhone 6 for streaming, and iPod nano (3rd generation) connected via USB using a speck.dock. I think there is also a 3.5mm aux jack on the mediabridge, but I have never used it so I can not comment on the sound quality from that source. I also think the mediabridge accepts usb flash drives, but I have only used the speckdock connected to the medibridge's usb port.

I have no idea if the sound quality difference in streamig vs usb is shortcoming of the mediabridge or if it applies to bluetooth streaming in general.

To me the difference is not a big deal and I am okay with the sound quality. If you are an audiophile the streaming quality may be an issue. But then again you would probably have all your music in lossless format.

Grom
As I said I am not familiar with all the current options, but I would look into grom. People seem to be happy with it.

I am not 100% sure on the Grom, but I think it is like the other units in that it uses the OEM cd changer connection. So if you have the business cd (the cd player above the MID radio) you can still use that to play cds, but if you have a cd changer in the trunk that will no longer work because the grom unit is now using the cd changer's audio connections.

For many people this is a non issue as they did not even have the cd changer in the trunk. Even if you have and use your OEM CD changer you could rip your cds and put them on your phone, iPod, or USB flash drive in lossless format. And even in lossless format you would probably have way more music that you had available with a fully loaded cd changer.
 

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BMW: Freude am Fahren
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Thanks SOLO12 for the input really usefull. I seem to still be able to get the DICE product.
They seem to have some complaints about the streaming quality. Music sounding dull.
Did you experience any of this?

One question for FW FW.
Does it mean that the GROM unit disables the CD unit?
GROM also sound like an attractive alternative.

Thanks again, Jacob
The GROM unit replaces the CD changer in the trunk by plugging into the CD Changer harness in the trunk. So the CD unit in the dash still works. The nice thing about the GROM is that they do make an adapter if your car has a DSP stereo installed. GROM is one of 2 "simple" options that work with the DSP. The other that can use the DSP is the Dynavin N6. While it is a nice looking and great working unit that has great features, you do lose all your MID functionality and OEM look. The cost of the Dynavin is also 4 times the price of the GROM with the DSP adapter.
 

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The incoming call clarity to me is obviously excellent because it comes through the BMW stereo. I've never had any complaints from the other end except when I have windows or sunroof open.
 
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