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Discussion Starter #1
Hope this helps someone looking to upgrade their electronics on an older FJ :cheers:

I looked at both Kenwood and Pioneer headunits but ultimately liked the Pioneer UI better. I narrowed the choices down to the Pioneer Appradio 4, AVH-4200NEX, and AVIC-5200NEX.

Requirements:
- Keep total budget including install under $1000.
- Support Apple Carplay
- Support Backup Camera
- Support Navigation (built-in or through smartphone).
- Retain OEM Look

Optional Bonus Requirements:
- Support HDMI Input
- Support Android Auto

I tried all three headunits on display at a local store before choosing the 4200NEX. The 7" screen won me over. After install, I realized that the screen tilt option on the 4200NEX helps reduce glare on a bright sunny day in the FJ. I had also worried about the older-tech, resistive touchscreen on the 4200NEX, but it proves to be almost as good as a capacitive touchscreen on the Appradio4 (I barely notice a difference). If you can't decide between these headunits, increase your budget and get the AVIC-8200NEX to get the built-in nav, capacitive touchscreen, and the 7" display.



Parts:
1) Pioneer 4200NEX
$449 (I got Crutchfield to pricematch a Bestbuy sale for $449.00, no tax and free S/H)

*Crutchfield will not discount their install gear if they're doing a pricematch. I noticed the install gear was near the discounted price on Amazon.

2) Toyota Dash Input USB PORT
$14 - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01LZ7NFHW/

3) TTP Backup Camera (Selected because it stays flush with the rear FJ bumper and looks like OEM backup sensor)
$20 - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B018800TR2/

3) Maestro RR
$95 - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00E4W1644/

4) iDatalink HRN-RR-TO1 Factory Integration Adapter
$40 - https://www.crutchfield.com/p_794HRRTO1/iDatalink-HRN-RR-TO1-Factory-Integration-Adapter.html

5) Metra 95-8202 Toyota DDIN Multi Dash Kit
$9 - https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000K52CY2/

Gear Cost: $627


Install

BYOG (Bring your own gear :wink )

I didn't like the non-OEM smooth black look on the USB input adapter, so I took off the front, lightly hand-sanded it, and spay painted it a matte charcoal color ($6 for matte spray paint at Walmart).

I paid a local shop (Sun Valley Stereo in Phoenix, AZ) to do the install. They completed the install in under 4 hours including the backup cam drilling, install, and iDatalink programming ($160). In hindsight, I'm glad I subbed out the install. They knew what they were doing and didn't cause any damage or improperly drilled holes in my FJ. I only wish I had asked them to install the under-vehicle AV cable in a protective electrical sleeve.

Install Cost: $166


Total Cost:
$627+$166= $793


After Thoughts:
1)The gauges from iDatalink with the latest firmware aren't that useful for a 2007 FJ. Instant fuel economy is nice, but tire pressure sensors don't send data.

What is useful is being able to customize your steering wheel controls. For example, I can hold down the volume minus button to toggle mute on/off (tapping the minus button still decrease the volume).

2) I have ordered another Toyota dash input adapter off eBay for the HDMI input. Supporting that could be a nice future addition.

3) Even with iOS 10, Carplay sometimes has glitches and I have to unplug my iPhone to reset. Be sure to enable "Hey Siri" on your iPhone so you can activate Siri and open apps without any touches. Apple maps hasn't let me down yet - live traffic is great.

4) Seamless transitions: I like being able to play music on my phone, then go sit in my FJ, plug in my iPhone, and the sound instantly transfers to my car stereo through Apple Carplay. The transitions also works with calls.

5) The external mic on the 4200NEX works well, especially mounted on the steering wheel column. So far, my callers tell me I sound normal.

6) I added a custom FJ splash screen to the 4200NEX to retain more of the OEM look on engine start [Download and load onto FAT32 USB].

7) Backup camera works fine with the ambient and red light from my tail lights. It automatically turns on when I go into reverse, though the 4200NEX needs about 2 seconds to transition to the AV feed.


Overall, I'm very happy with these results. Pictures of final install attached.

Happy to answer any questions :)
 

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For the USB in the dash, does this connect to your Carplay port or just charge your phone.

We had our Kenwood system installed and they added a USB port to the glove box. This isn't really ideal as we don't want the phone in the glove box and I would rather have an OEM look. So I would like to purchase what you have to relocate the USB for carplay to the dash.

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter #4
For the USB in the dash, does this connect to your Carplay port or just charge your phone.

We had our Kenwood system installed and they added a USB port to the glove box. This isn't really ideal as we don't want the phone in the glove box and I would rather have an OEM look. So I would like to purchase what you have to relocate the USB for carplay to the dash.

Thanks!
It does both. The audio USB port connects to the headunit, the other connects to power. Both ports charge a device, however the audio USB port charges with less amps than the USB power port.

I should note, in my setup, I had to choose between using CarPlay and Android Auto. This is because the 4200NEX would require two audio USB ports to use both. If I ever get a droid tablet, I'll have to install another audio USB port.
 

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I have a dual USB mod but it only charges. Yours is way cooler. I'm jealous. Haha good work!
 

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The mic on the display turned out to be quite good. Gonna pass on running the external. Thanks again for the pics.
 

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I'm in the process now of planning out my own head unit upgrade with CarPlay and backup camera.

The steering wheel mic mount looks intriguing. Do you think it is noticeably better (or maybe worse) than the traditional location near the visor?

How is the rear camera working out? I'm contemplating being lazy and going with Best Buy for my install and the main camera they sell is the Pioneer ND-BC8.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm in the process now of planning out my own head unit upgrade with CarPlay and backup camera.

The steering wheel mic mount looks intriguing. Do you think it is noticeably better (or maybe worse) than the traditional location near the visor?

How is the rear camera working out? I'm contemplating being lazy and going with Best Buy for my install and the main camera they sell is the Pioneer ND-BC8.
My call contacts don't notice a difference between my iPhone mic and the steering wheel mounted mic. Since it can be wired through the steering wheel column, it is easier to install too.

The Pioneer ND-BC8 will be fine but will have to me mounted on the bottom of the bumper. If you're going to pay for install, might as well mount inside the bumper like I did.
 

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Super nice write-up! I'm going with the hidden back up camera you mentioned and the USB port. This really helped... thanks!
 

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For anyone interested, Best Buy currently has the Pioneer AVH-1330NEX on sale for $325 with Geek Squad installation included. I was going to mention the Sony XAV-AX100, which is the one I bought a few days ago, but that model is no longer on sale.

I have a question about that USB connector. From reading the description on Amazon's site, it sounds like it doesn't support 2.1A charging (faster charging for devices that support that). I see some other makes/models of similar looking USB connectors, so I'd be curious to hear if anyone is familiar with any of those other brands and can recommend (or advise against) any of them.
 

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I'm having an install done in the next few weeks of a stereo I purchased at best buy on sale. Basic install was included but i'll be adding a few things so will be interested to see final quote.

I really like the splash screen. Can you tell me a little more about what is needed to be done to accomplish that?

Going to add a backup camera and would ideally like to have it the way you have set up but will need to see if they will even go to that length. Never installed at best buy before. Overall, wasn't really looking to change up the stock unit but seems like too good a deal to pass up. The Pioneer AVH-X391BHS was $200 on sale with basic install included. I'll add the steering wheel controls and additional Aux in the glove while they are in there. Would also like to add the charging/audio ports you added and a cam. Will probably also see about hardwiring my dashcam. Lot of additions so will see what they quote as well as if they can even mount the camera in this way.

If not, i'll take the unit to reputable independent and pay for the install myself. Will still come out with a great set up for a great price.
 

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Thank you for the write-up. You put the mic in the same location as I did. :) And I just bought a similar camera and will install in the same location. The other thread with detailed camera installation has broken photobucket pictures so I can't see the install, but how hard can a hole be? :jester: But nothing wrong with a professional install. Your pics show it's possible so that's good.

Instead of the reverse lights circuit I'm going to hook the camera to either an always hot circuit or the parking lights so I can use the camera without needing to be in reverse. I can manually switch to the camera on the head unit. Or I'll keep the camera hot and connect the reverse light trigger to the radio and retain the automatically switching to the camera when going into reverse and still be able to switch to it manually. So many wires, so little time...

IMG_6502.jpg
 
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Has anyone done much research on the pros/cons of various backup cameras? I've contemplated buying the Pioneer ND-BC8 just because Best Buy sells that one and it's gotten mostly good reviews (the main ding seems to be that it's not great at night). That way if I want to have them go ahead and install it, they'll be familiar with it and hopefully won't give me any grief about it. I would buy it online where I can get it for about $54, vs the $90+ that Best Buy sells it for.

But if there's a markedly better backup camera than that model, I'm open to getting that. There's a good chance I'll hold off on having Best Buy do the camera install, anyway, since that's not included in the basic install and they want to charge about $130 for a backup camera install, and for that price I wouldn't mind trying to give it a go myself to save some money.

Edit: Worth noting that the Sony head unit I bought has adjustable parking guidelines. From reading the Q&A section for some of the cameras I see on Amazon, it looks like some cameras "feature" guidelines of their own which cannot be disabled. So it's important to me that the camera I buy either doesn't have guidelines at all, or lets me disable them.
 

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Edit: Worth noting that the Sony head unit I bought has adjustable parking guidelines. From reading the Q&A section for some of the cameras I see on Amazon, it looks like some cameras "feature" guidelines of their own which cannot be disabled. So it's important to me that the camera I buy either doesn't have guidelines at all, or lets me disable them.
Not a good answer to your question, but I'm going to plug my camera in and play with it in various lighting conditions before drilling a hole. I've seen some camera recommendations in the forum but went off on my own path (some recommendations were a couple of years old).

The one I chose has the ability to turn off the internal guidelines and also disable mirroring if you want to mount it facing forward on the front. It also claims to be sealed and IP68 waterproof and the lens rotates separately from the mount which are the main two reasons I bought this one. We've got some hard freezes coming up this weekend so Amazon's return policy should be plenty of time to see if it will work out for me (returnable until 1/31/2018). Kinda pricey at 30 clams but we'll see.

Vehicle Backup Camera, COOLINT CT-106S Mini 360 Degree Rotatable Car Multifunction Backup Rear View Camera with Distance Guide Line Switcher
 

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Any long term updates? I'm looking to do the same thing but would mostly like it for hitching trailers. Currently have an ARB rear bumper. I've also played with carplay and the only thing I don't like is inability to multitask (nav and phone call/message), and having to be wired in. I get that's how it works, just wondering if its worth keeping carplay on the list of wants.

thx
 

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Is there a way to add an active front camera too for obstacles, etc
 
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crickets???
 

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Thank you for the write-up. You put the mic in the same location as I did. :) And I just bought a similar camera and will install in the same location. The other thread with detailed camera installation has broken photobucket pictures so I can't see the install, but how hard can a hole be? :jester: But nothing wrong with a professional install. Your pics show it's possible so that's good.

Instead of the reverse lights circuit I'm going to hook the camera to either an always hot circuit or the parking lights so I can use the camera without needing to be in reverse. I can manually switch to the camera on the head unit. Or I'll keep the camera hot and connect the reverse light trigger to the radio and retain the automatically switching to the camera when going into reverse and still be able to switch to it manually. So many wires, so little time...

View attachment 965978
How do I do this for front and rear???
 
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