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Head unit update with volume control buttons

driver_EV

Member
Dec 7, 2011
209
43
Charleston, South Carolina
I thought I would share this now that I think I am satisfied enough, and want to contribute back to the club.

I have the 2.5 with the double DIN, and have been trying different solutions. Not wanting to spend a lot and then be disappointed in how it works, I have tried inexpensive options.

The improvement I was seeking, beyond just keeping operation simple, and not having a bunch of small buttons to deal with, left me with the goal of finding a way to have push button controls for the basics that I would frequently want to use.

I settled on an inexpensive unit with a "Toto" brand. The splash startup screen presents the name "YEAR".

It has the ability to add the equivalent of steering wheel media controls, except I want buttons I can locate to suit me on the center console, near the handbrake.

The specification that works is "SWC Compatible" and the unit has an analog plug (that looks like it is for headphone audio). It is described as "Steering wheel control with learning".

Some of these need a module or signal conversion device that is specific to a vehicle, but the "with learning" seems to be the key for my purpose. Fortunately the simple circuit I had in mind is compatible.

The unit came with a 1/8" 3 conductor plug and wire that is used to connect to the media control buttons in the vehicle. I had looked for schematics on how these work and fortuately was able to make a simple button control circuit that the unit reponds to. It lets me program each button to do what I want it to.

Here are some pics of how it came out:

IMG_20191110_165704a.png

IMG_20190816_135856a.png


IMG_20190816_140022a.png


So a good bit of time spent, and as you can see, the custom made button console I made with 3D printing came out okay.

The buttons were inexpensive, the circuit consists of the six momentary contact buttons, four resistors, and a 1/8" headphone extension cable I had saved in a box from a while back reaches from the head unit to the button console.

I use "Android Auto" on it, so my phone does the GPS NAV, and music apps run well and are played throught the head unit. Google Maps looks and works better than the old Alpine.
 
Last edited:

supersnoop

Tesla Roadster #334
Mar 24, 2014
1,111
221
Pflugerville
Did you consider any head units that are equipped with a remote control? Both of the singe-DIN JVC units originally available with the Roadster allow for the use of an IR remote control. It’s be pretty easy to affix some Velcro or a magnet to the remote if you want to mount it somewhere. Are these remote control units elusive in the double-DIN touch-screen market?
 

gregd

Active Member
Dec 31, 2014
2,537
1,769
CM98
Did you consider any head units that are equipped with a remote control? Both of the singe-DIN JVC units originally available with the Roadster allow for the use of an IR remote control. It’s be pretty easy to affix some Velcro or a magnet to the remote if you want to mount it somewhere. Are these remote control units elusive in the double-DIN touch-screen market?
Somehow, the use of a remote control in a car the size of the Roadster seems, well, a bit absurd. But I suppose the availability of physical buttons can be an advantage in terms of safety, versus trying to tap on a touch screen. With the oh-so-smooth ride of the Roadster, using a touch screen can be akin to throwing darts at it with your index finger.
 
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driver_EV

Member
Dec 7, 2011
209
43
Charleston, South Carolina
Did you consider any head units that are equipped with a remote control? Both of the singe-DIN JVC units originally available with the Roadster allow for the use of an IR remote control. It’s be pretty easy to affix some Velcro or a magnet to the remote if you want to mount it somewhere. Are these remote control units elusive in the double-DIN touch-screen market?

Well this unit does come with an IR remote. I agree with gregd that it is not desirable use case in the Roadster. I put it in the glovebox, and may never use it, but it is there if I need it.

I like my big buttons. :)
 
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