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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Greetings all!

Thought I would post this for those of you considering the Android Stereo installs. I didn't take any photos of the install simply because it was so easy and any questions you may have I will do my best to answer. If needed I can take some more photos other than the post-install ones I will upload here.

There are a number of sellers out there selling the Android head units but only a few will not only be "plug-n-play" but also not require an adapter. The most popular one and the one I purchased comes from Pumpkin at:

Car Stereo, In-Dash Car DVD Player | Pumpkin

Go on Ebay and do a search for "FJ Cruiser Android". There are some WinCE powered units out there but I would not waste my time on those since there is much more support for Android.

I purchased mine from this seller for about $350 with free shipping as opposed to purchasing from the Pumpkin website for $399 (at the time I looked at them).

eBay: Pumpkin Car Stereo


CAVEAT - One thing to consider about these units.....New "versions" with different looks and tweaks are constantly being introduced and as a result, the unit you see in these pics and the unit you buy may be a bit different, but generally the Android operating system operates the same. The various mfgs usually implement their interfaces and software a bit different from each other and from model to model so you may have to tinker with them to get them working just right....but they are a lot of fun and a huge upgrade from the stock unit...just be patient.


Here are some thoughts from my initial experience:

GOOD

1 - Very fast shipping, I think it arrived in 4 days from China.

2 - The build is very good and solid. Buttons give good feel and the unit overall looks professional. Just remember this is not a top of the line Kenwood, Alpine, Pioneer, etc so don't get too picky.....Let's just say I was pleasantly surprised.

3 - Easy install.....It doesn't get much easier than this. The unit comes with the Toyota harness adapter and will plug directly into yours.....Period. No bezel is required as mine fit the dash perfectly as if it was made by Toyota for the FJ. You will need to remove the factory brackets from your stock HU and install on the new unit. Only thing you will need to do is to either grind or flatten several centering dimples on the brackets as they do not have a place to sit on the new HU. Took me 2 min with a ballpeen hammer a few love taps on the vice and voila. The factory HU uses 4 bolts per side but mine could "only" accommodate 3 per side....I hope it doesn't fall out! haha

4 - Backlighting....The description of the unit gives the impression that there are only a handful of colors to choose from but I found that the color is infinitely adjustable and I was able to match the factory dash back-lighting with no problem.

5 - It's Android - So with an internet connection you can connect to the Play Store and download apps to your heart's content. I would recommend replacing the stock launcher with something else....I am using Nova and it works much nicer and smoother. The installed radio app, gps (I-Go), video player etc....all work good but for GPS navigation I would highly recommend using WAZE.

6 - Steering wheel controls worked perfect...you just program them in the software settings.

7 - Microphone tends to be a little on the sensitive side as it picks up a lot of background noise when driving. UPDATE - Have since removed the external mic and just use the internal....seems to work good, although still picks up background noise. Your mileage may vary on this one.


NOT SO GOOD/BUT NOT SO BAD

1 - I lost the sub-woofer functionality but I think it is just a matter of connecting power to the correct wire......Pending......FIXED!

2 - Be patient when you first set it up and turn it on. I have been around computers and tech since I was a curtain climber and even though this is Android, it is not going to function just like your Galaxy S5 or Galaxy Tablet. So be patient at first. Connecting Blue Tooth and WiFi was straight forward but the first time I connected to the Play Store it gave me a few errors, but over the course of 15-20 min of me just exploring the stereo and maybe it downloading updates in the background it started running just fine....now I have no errors. And I signed in with an existing Google account.

3 - Bluetooth - seems to be my only real gripe right now. The HU takes about 20-30 seconds to boot up when you turn the key on. Phone Bluetooth connectivity works perfect but my Bluetooth OBD2 dongle seems to lose itself when the key is turned off. It is bit strange because the dongle is still listed in the Bluetooth list and Torque still shows it but for some reason it will not connect. If I select a different Bluetooth device in the Torque settings, back out, and then go in again and reselect the OBD2 dongle again, bang it connects right away and will stay connected until I turn the key offl.......So that one is Pending research ------ UPDATE -----This has resolved itself somehow and Torque never loses connectivity....Don't know what changed. Possibly an update from the developer of Torque cured it. Yes, can run both Torque and your phone through the head unit Bluetooth at the same time...This has come up in discussion and at least on my unit I have no problem running both.

Memory Card - Recently installed a 32gb microSD card to hold my music, photos, videos, etc....32gb is the largest this system will accept, at least that is what they say.


TIPS - ( I will try to update this as more are posted/discovered)

Factory Settings Code (for this unit) - 126
GPS Antenna location - Thanks to Salvador Sun for his tip on locating the GPS antenna.....See his photos here:
http://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forums/stereo-electronics-electrical/426154-android-stereo-upgrade-4.html#post6186257
Change startup Logo - http://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forums/stereo-electronics-electrical/426154-android-stereo-upgrade-5.html#post6190377
OBD2 Bluetooth Adapter - I highly recommend to use this one: http://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-Bluetooth-diagnostics-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1430196928&sr=8-1&keywords=elm327&tag=viglink20486-20
Steering Wheel Control - This program allows you to control 3rd party music players with the steering wheel control. (Thanks to Vyperpunk for sharing this) [App] CarService + PhoneRemoteStatus SWC (Steering Wheel Control) for 3rd Party Apps - Post #1179
Backup Camera wiring - Thanks again to Salvador Sun - http://www.fjcruiserforums.com/forums/stereo-electronics-electrical/426154-android-stereo-upgrade-11.html#post6353489
Nova Launcher - One of the best Android launchers on the market and far better than the stock launcher that comes with these units. You can download it from the Google Play store on your device or from here: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.teslacoilsw.launcher&hl=en
Hacking/Rooting Your Android device - This is a great place for hacking/rooting/discussing all things Android. XDA-Developers: XDA-Developers Android Forums
AUX/USB Ports - Axxess AX-USB-35EXT USB + 3.5 Waterproof Cable w/ Covered Panel (thanks to rev. 3:11 for finding this)

Here are some photos of what the unit looks like installed.



Enjoy

 

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I am looking for just this kind of upgrade. I will subscribe to find out how you like it with a little time in.

Is that engine gauges instrument cluster screen pictured an APP?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes the instrument "cluster" is a very popular Android app called Torque. It reads computer codes and live data from your vehicle's onboard computer sent to it by way of an OBD-II dongle (On Board Diagnostics) , usually bluetooth.

The OBD-II dongle can be purchased many places but the easiest I think is from Amazon. There are a lot of copy cats out there so I recommend using this one...I have been using it for over a year with no problems.

http://www.amazon.com/BAFX-Products-Bluetooth-diagnostics-Android/dp/B005NLQAHS/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1426648172&sr=8-1&keywords=elm327
 

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@CoyoteAssassin

I notice the ebay description states RDS support for the FM radio but your tuner picture shows no station/song info, just station number. Is this a limit of the default app and have you tried any other tuner apps to see if RDS shows up?

Nice write up. Definitely got me wanting one.

And if I understand your issue with the OBDII it is only supposed to work with the key in the on position not in the accessory position. It is this way on all vehicles.
 

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Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Yes, the unit does have RDS support, I just live in an area with bad reception. I went out and managed to find a station that had it's website in the RDS info and took a pic, but driving around I have seen the song info and station info being displayed. That being said....I don't listen to the radio very much as I usually listen to my MP3 music.

I haven't found any other true radio apps that I could download, most are radio apps that stream from the internet.

Regarding the OBD-II, yes I am aware that the vehicle has to be in the ON/RUN position, but that has nothing to do with the problem I am having......Basically upon starting the vehicle I have to tell Torque to find the adapter all over again......It is in the BT device list but for some reason it does not like the power cycle.........I have never had a problem using this adapter with the Torque app on my tablet or phone so it is definitely something with the hardware/software on the unit....but small issue for now.

The radio is cool....you should consider it....but I am biased. ;-)
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Also, an update on the Sub-woofer issue.

Problem resolved.....quite easily.

After reading numerous posts on this subject and viewing the connector pin-outs it only took 5 min to fix.

The power lead for the sub is a PINK with BLUE stripe on the factory stereo harness. This needs to be connected to the blue power antenna lead coming out of the new radio...at least that is what worked for me.

Turns out the BLUE antenna lead was actually pinned in the connector....just it was pinned to the wrong spot. So I used a jewelers flat blade screwdriver to release the pin for the BLUE wire and then relocated it to the correct location for the sub connector......and that was it, works perfectly.:rocker:
 

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Wow im sold on this unit 100 percent killer find dude. keep me updated on any problems.... you still loving it 13 days later??
 

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Also, an update on the Sub-woofer issue.

Problem resolved.....quite easily.

After reading numerous posts on this subject and viewing the connector pin-outs it only took 5 min to fix.

The power lead for the sub is a PINK with BLUE stripe on the factory stereo harness. This needs to be connected to the blue power antenna lead coming out of the new radio...at least that is what worked for me.

Turns out the BLUE antenna lead was actually pinned in the connector....just it was pinned to the wrong spot. So I used a jewelers flat blade screwdriver to release the pin for the BLUE wire and then relocated it to the correct location for the sub connector......and that was it, works perfectly.:rocker:
CA, I'm preparing to install mine this week end. I don't suppose you have any photos of the blue wire pin locations? Or can you describe from where you moved it and to where? Everyone seems to have the same problem with this sub-woofer issue. Also, is there a way to connect the factory AUX in port below the dash? Thanks for the info. Very useful.
 

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I don't have an Android system but when i installed my Kennwood HU the power antenna wire was used to power up the Sub, it needs a constant 12v wire.
 

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I don't have an Android system but when i installed my Kennwood HU the power antenna wire was used to power up the Sub, it needs a constant 12v wire.
I'm going to try to move the HU blue pwr ant wire over into the the empty socket that lines up with the factory harness pink SW wire and see if that works (thanks CA). I'll report the results.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hey Salvador

I should have taken pics when I fixed the sub issue.....If I get a chance I will take some pics this weekend.

If you are installing the same HU that I have then there is one BLUE lead that comes out of the HU harness that is for the antenna lead. On the factory harness I located which pin went to the SW switch, which on my 2008 is a PINK wire with the BLUE stripe (you can verify this on the SW switch). I then relocated the BLUE wire on the HU harness to match the pin of the SW that I previously found.

Hope that works for you.
 

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Discussion Starter #13 (Edited)
Still liking the unit....working good. Playing around with various music players from Google Play and really it comes down to your own personal preference, but one thing for sure is that I cannot map steering wheel controls to music players other than the installed player that comes with the unit. I am sure it is just a programing thing.

Installed 32gb Sandisk memory card from Costco and works great. The only thing I have noticed is when trying to sync music from my home WiFi to the new memory card is that the software sees the GPS SD card and trys to copy music there instead of my normal memory card. I use ISyncr and while it allows you to specify "external SD" it did not allow me to choose which one.

The solution I found was to remove the GPS memory card prior to turning the unit on and then the software will install to the correct memory card when you choose SD memory card. Once I am finished with the update, I turn the power off and reseat the GPS memory card.
 

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Hey Salvador

I should have taken pics when I fixed the sub issue.....If I get a chance I will take some pics this weekend.

If you are installing the same HU that I have then there is one BLUE lead that comes out of the HU harness that is for the antenna lead. On the factory harness I located which pin went to the SW switch, which on my 2008 is a PINK wire with the BLUE stripe (you can verify this on the SW switch). I then relocated the BLUE wire on the HU harness to match the pin of the SW that I previously found.

Hope that works for you.
Thanks CA. I think you have solved a problem inherent in these Android systems. They are generically wired for "Toyotas", but most Toy models don't have the SW on/off switch. Now I just have to figure out how you moved the pin. I'm guessing you just push down at the base with the jeweler's screwdriver?
 

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Discussion Starter #15
If i remember correctly you access the pin release from the pin side of the plug.....just slide a jeweler's flat blade in and it pops right out. I shoulda taken pics. haha
 

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Still liking the unit....working good. Playing around with various music players from Google Play and really it comes down to your own personal preference, but one thing for sure is that I cannot map steering wheel controls to music players other than the installed player that comes with the unit. I am sure it is just a programing thing.

Installed 32gb Sandisk memory card from Costco and works great. The only thing I have noticed is when trying to sync music from my home WiFi to the new memory card is that the software sees the GPS SD card and trys to copy music there instead of my normal memory card. I use ISyncr and while it allows you to specify "external SD" it did not allow me to choose which one.

The solution I found was to remove the GPS memory card prior to turning the unit on and then the software will install to the correct memory card when you choose SD memory card. Once I am finished with the update, I turn the power off and reseat the GPS memory card.
As for android music players go i always found poweramp to be the best imo. very versatile, lots of customization theres even a free trial but for like 2 bucks i couldnt resist not picking it up.
 

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I may have missed this in the post or in the link you provided, but did this come preloaded with GPS maps of any kind? If so, what kind/quality? I'm not too familiar with these android units, does the GPS work offline as long as you have the correct maps stored on the card?

Thanks,

~Dave
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Dave

Yes, it does come with IGo maps pre-installed that do work offline. It works good although not quite as refined as Google maps. You can download areas of Google maps to use offline if you did not know. If you want traffic or to do searches then you will need a data connection.

Regards
Chris
 
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