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iPod console

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by steve184, Sep 30, 2006.

  1. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    Anyone got the iPod console option fitted to an A3 (£175 factory fit - not added aftwerwards) Although I asked dealer about this today and she did say - it was just a cable that is added to the cd changer port of the car stereo that is run to the glovebox - seems a bit expensive £175 for a cable i must say!

    Anyway i am struggling to see one on an actual car and see whether £175 is worth having it - how do you navigate your songs on your ipod if its in the glovebox hidden away? Some people say it gives you tracknames on DIS - dealer said she 'thought' it put something on the radio display but wasn't sure - i find it annoying that there isn't more information available for this at the dealer.

    Anyone know the ins and outs?

    cheers
    #1
  2. JO AND STE
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    JO AND STE New Member

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    Hi, we have just picked up a new a3 s-line, sportback, and the ipod connection is a proper docking station in the glove compartment, with different fittings for each ipod. You can use it from the cd player, and thats where the info comes up, but not track names or anything just numbers.


    Hope this helps, and it does sound great.

    jo:laugh:
    #2
  3. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    So how do you navigate your playlists songs etc? I'm trying to suss it in my head how it all works?
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  4. JO AND STE
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    JO AND STE New Member

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    Well, as far as i can tell (only had car 2 days) You make upto 5 playlists on your ipod, calling them 1,2,3,4,5, no 6 just plays all tracks almost like shuffle.

    You can put upto 99 songs on each playlist, cos the disply on the cdplayer only shows upto 2 numbers, so it recomends that you dont go over 99.

    You get a supplement(instructions)leaflet with the car telling you how to use it, it defo doesnt tell you track names though. And ours doesnt have any cables on show, just the docking station.

    hope this helps
    jo
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  5. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    is it a big leaflet? son't suppose you could scan it or photograph it and send it to me so i could read it - wouldn't mind knowing how the whole things works in full before i fork out £175 for it
    #5
  6. JohnS3
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    JohnS3 Active Member

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    I think you can buy the same thing from the parts department for £100. Might be worth checking.
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  7. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    Prob right john but then you gotta start ripping a £25k car apart - not realy what i want to do
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  8. jdp1962
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    jdp1962 Grumpy Old Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    It's very easy for a non-expert to do. Here's the link I posted when I put one in my A4.

    http://www.audi-sport.net/vb/showthread.php?t=22894
    #8
  9. ren
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    ren Member

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    the nice thing about it when factory ordered is that it has its own section in the glovebox where it's solid and powered. (there's even an audi logo screen which appears on it although this struck me as a little stupid as you can't really see the screen unless you look at it carefully from an uncomfortable angle) you'd need a new glovebox insert if you were to have it as factory fitted as all th e sections in the glovebox are moulded around what you have in there. jo and ste are exactly right as to how it works. basically, the ipod is the replacement for a cd changer (you can't have both). the playlists you make on the ipod are the cds, with the exception of what would be cd6 which becomes the combined playlists 1 to 5. it's really simple - you only get track names (as with cds) but i think i read somewhere that the concertIII (as symphonyIII) will have the ability to read and display track info. it works well with the mf steering wheel. it's not perfect. track info would be good. but as i make the playlists for it, i know more or less what's there and it hasn't been the let down i thought it might be.
    #9
  10. BrianM
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    BrianM BrianM

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    I had the Ipod cable link fitted to my used Sportback by the dealer. My car had the Symphony system with inbuilt 6 CD so I get the best of both worlds, Ipod and CD. It works exactly as described above which can be a pain, generally I start the album that I want to listen to from the Ipod before connecting to the cable rather than using Playlists, just my preference really. Unlike the Dension Icelink I had on my BMW 530 which let me display track info on teh head unit. But the sound quality is superb.
    Forgot to say that i chose to have the cable fitted to the centre armrest:)
    #10
  11. d3fy
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    d3fy Active Member

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    track info is a must, don't get me wrong I would rather have it than nothing or go back to carting CDs around, but I also select the album and start playing it then connect to the car so that I dont have to try and find it in the 20Gb of songs
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  12. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    So.. ok for arguments sake you have lets say 100 albums on your iPod. You plug it into your car and you want to listen to a specific album on your iPod - how do you select it? My understanding is the iPod controls and screen are disabled when connected (audi logo) So how do you navigate your full library on your iPod?
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  13. ren
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    ren Member

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    short answer ... you don't. it only uses playlists which have to be made before you plug it in (i'm only talking about the audi fit here so other solutions may be different). you can with an ipod make an on-the-go playlist though which is a half-solution. if you only made 4 playlists for the car, you reserve the on-the-go playlist as the fifth. so if you decide there's somehting in particular you want to listen to, you can add that album/artist/song to the on the go playlist and you're away!
    #13
  14. ren
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    ren Member

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    with the sd slots in the navplus, the track data is displayed on the nav screen which is a good bit of progress. does anyone have ipod+satnav and able to confirm if ipod displays track info on the screen? or is it just the disappointing track1 ... track2 etc.?
    #14
  15. JohnS3
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    JohnS3 Active Member

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    Does anyone have an iPod video? What do you see if it's plugged into your TV when only playing music? I'm thinking you will see a mirror of the ipod screen. So, if you have the RNS-e with video input and a iPod video you get track names and album covers on screen!!!

    It can't be that simple can it?
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  16. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    From how this has been explained to me on here - i'm a little dissapointed with what you seem to get for £175. It doesn't sound like its a terrible flexible solution - the idea of an iPod is to be able to carry aroudn with you more than just 6 cds worth of music - but it seems thats all you can do. You have this unit with you that contains all this music yet you cant actually access 90% in the car because of the poor execution. I would much prefer the iPod kit to have been a cradle on the dash (similar to mobile phone) where you can use the iPod buttons and screen to navigate music - but which still plays through the stereo and charges from the car electrical system. Sounds like a waste of £175 to me peeps. Come on Audi more effort needed here!
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  17. JohnS3
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    JohnS3 Active Member

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    I agree the Audi offering is naf.

    The drive and play from Harmon Kardon at around £100 looks good. You stick the iPod out of sight and have a small display on the dash along with a remote control which mimics the Ipod navigation wheel. The only down side is you have the display and remote on show....
    #17
  18. madvw
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    madvw Active Member

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    other way is to use a dension ice>link instead. On those, CD 6 activates the ipod menu, and you can fly about albums as much as you like, just as if using the ipod as a walkman...

    plus as well, dension are now doing video ice>links, so what you have suggested johns3 may be a reality....
    #18
  19. ren
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    ren Member

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    the audi offering does really fall short of what could be done. but it suits me and like a lot of things you learn to live with it and make it work for your needs. for example, i like having my itunes on random anyway as i get bored of my music fairly quickly and so it's like having your ipod pretend to be a radio. lots of stuff i'd forgotten about and enjoy hearing again. and lots of album tracks i'm sure i'd never heard before they came around on the shuffle. so what i have done is put my whole library into one of the playlists for the car and then changed the cd options through the headunit to play random. the fact that it's completely hidden is a plus, as johns3 says; two friends who have aftermarket ipod solutions have had their cars broken into - not for the ipod but for the cradle/remote and all the cabling!
    #19
  20. mandyray
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    mandyray Member

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    I've got an iPod Video and recently got the Connects2 kit fitted to my A3 (Concert II + BOSE). I chose to have the cable in the centre console rather than glovebox so I see the iPod screen itself to select albums etc directly. That's because the track info is not displayed on the head unit although it is possible to skip through albums using CD+/- on the headunit.

    Hope that helps!
    #20
  21. jdp1962
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    jdp1962 Grumpy Old Moderator Staff Member Moderator

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    That's exactly how I regard mine. Could not have put it better myself.
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  22. dkjc
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    dkjc New Member

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    Could you please explain more about exactly how you set up the following:-

    'so what i have done is put my whole library into one of the playlists for the car and then changed the cd options through the headunit to play random'

    Does this mean that there are no limits to the number of tracks in a playlist? Others have suggested that 99 tracks is the limit? I am very interested in your reply, as i have added the factory option to my Sportback order and this is just what I was hoping to do.
    #22
  23. madvw
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    madvw Active Member

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    there is no limit to the number of tracks in a playlist. The limit is on the display - so track 101 is track 01 again, track 102 is 02, etc etc
    #23
  24. a3norwich
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    a3norwich Not anymore - Back 2 BMW (shh)

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    Audi/factory iPod integration in A3 is very badly executed and not at all user friendly.

    Get yaself a Phatbox!
    #24
  25. Plank
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    Plank Member

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    Factory Ipod console is junk.

    • Functionality is p!ss poor
    • No track/artist/song/album info
    • Dire navigation
    • No direct access to songs except through 5 playlists which you have to setup on your computer at home in advance).
    • Compatability is disgraceful (doesn't work on latest iPod Nano & others, despite Audi making no mention of this).
    • Poor reliability - e.g. if you are playing a song on say playlist 3, and you park up and switch off, when you return and restart it will continue playing the same song but the display will now show playlist 6 for no reason at all - despite the fact it continues playing playlist 3!!!
    • It's also depressingly slow - if you're on track 1 and want to get to track 50 in a playlist (which is a common thing to need to do because your entire music library has to be accessed from just 5 playlists!) it takes FOREVER! There's a pause of about 2 seconds between the track number advancing, so no matter how quickly you press the "next track" button, you have to wait ages. advancing 50 tracks takes about 2 minutes of frantically pressing the next button.
    In short, spend your £175 on something (anything) else. I wish I had. It's sh*te.
    #25
  26. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    be honest - piss poor is how I would describe the entire Symphony II+ unit in general - definately not as good as the old Symphony II unit.
    #26
  27. Plank
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    Plank Member

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    Really? The new Concert is *much* better than the old one... (or at least the new Concert in the A3 is much better than the old Concert was in my A4)
    #27
  28. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    well in my opinion yes - but is exactly that - my opinion
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  29. normski
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    normski Member

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    Any chance of you qualifying that answer with why the new one is so bad?
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  30. wigginer
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    wigginer Member

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    Absolutely agree and thanks for confirming my recent suspicions!

    I have spent the last couple of weeks trying to bottom the problem related to 'Poor Reliability' that you've quoted above and now agree it's Sh1t to say the least.

    I am in dispute with the Audi dealer at the moment and have not formally accepted the car from my third-party supplier (LEX) as it has a number of problems including the physical iPOD connection i.e. I cannot engage an iPOD Nano in the unit without really forcing it. I will be adding this to my list of grievances and will be pushing for a full refund.
    #30
  31. Plank
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    Plank Member

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    Thats because it's only compatible with the old (obsolete) Nano model.

    It's not compatible with the current model (though neither Audi customer services nor the sales literature mentions this anywhere!).

    So you thought that by buying a brand new car, you'd get latest technology? Don't be daft...
    #31
  32. stevec
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    stevec Member

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    All, I have edited the comment by Plank below (hope you don't mind mate) and would appreciate any further edits by anyone else.

    I think this is worthy of a sticky and I hope we can get some standard wording that we can all individualy send the comments below to Audi customer services.

    I am quite shocked by the poor functionality with my RNS-E head unit, if there is anyone else who would like to edit this too then please go ahead we can then use it as an escalation to Audi.

    #32
  33. steve184
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    steve184 Active Member

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    i'm dissapointed wiht the functionality of the symphony II+ head unit in comparison wiht the old II - seems nothing i can do, audi refuse to accept there is a problem then theres people on here with a bad attitude like h5djr (or whatever his name is) who takes the attitude 'mine is ok so i dont care'
    #33
  34. HeliChris
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    HeliChris Learning to fly 3D

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    Hi All

    I agree the iPod interface is not perfect

    BUT

    I would rather have the iPod interface over a CD changer (which does not play MP3 CD's)

    I have the iPod interface, and have been using it for 2 months, I am glad I speced it. I remeber reading on this forum if you don't spec a CD Changer, or iPod interface you get a different glove box, which is costly to retro fit, yes it can be modified, but will it be to the same fit and finish standards?
    #34
  35. h5djr
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    h5djr Well-Known Member

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    What I said was that my Symphony II+ does all that I ask of it so I don't have a problem with it.

    I don't very often listen to the radio or CDs when I'm driving anyway, but when I do it plays my CDs without any problem and when I listen to the radio it does that OK, so I personally have no problem with it at all.

    Also if you are going to slag someone off, please do it using proper English and spelling.
    #35
  36. wigginer
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    wigginer Member

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    Well guys my RS4 'is in the shop' today to sort out a number of problems (this one included). Dealer recognises the physical incompatabilty of the 2nd Generation iPOD Nano ( but not the software incompatibilty ... I don't think they will be able to ever get over this with the RNS-E unit), and have given me a decent workaround (with promise to give proper workaround, when third-party suppliers start to deliver physically compatible units (eta no idea.)

    Watch this space ...
    #36
  37. BennyB0Y
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    BennyB0Y The Black Phantom

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    h5djr,

    Symphony II+ I've heard (and hope to acquire one over my Symphony II which 'definitely' doesn't play MP3s) does the business. Thanks for your help and comments on other forums. Does anyone have a manual for it so I can see to spec it out please? Cheers.
    #37
  38. DriveByShooters
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    DriveByShooters Editor Audi-Sport.Net Magazine

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    Heres something to think about. 5 playlists with 99 songs on each playlist.

    Hmmmmm 495 songs. Thats an awful lot of albums.

    Ok you cant see the track names etc. But can you with a cd changer?

    People moan saying "how will i know what im playing" or " how can i tell whats next"

    Trust me, you WILL get used to it. Some people can't even remember whats in there 6 disc changer.

    We moaned when cd changers first came out and i'm sure we'll moan about the next new technological wonder.

    My humble opinion....If it doesn't do EXACTLY what you want it to...DONT FIT IT!!!.

    Maybe someone will invent a way of running cd changers in series and we could link 49 of them together.!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    #38
  39. Staz
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    Staz is a retronaut Staff Member Moderator

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    Like missm I have a connects2 cable fitted to my mp3 player. It's sony however they do Ipod cables too.

    I have the cable coming out from under the base behind the ashtray and each album on my mp3 it's shown as a CD. CD+ to go up one (in alphabetical order) CD- to go down. Once it gets to CD6 it starts from CD1 again. Tracks are selected as normal of course.

    Again no track info is displayed on the screen but the player is within arms reach if I need it. And as the albums are alphabetically selected I pretty much know how many CD+s/-s to press to find the album I want.

    The cable did come with a bracket secifically for my mp3 player but I decided I didn't really need to have it on display.

    I plan to use the same set up on my next car. My mate has a brand new TT with the Ipod kit and I thought it was pants that it just says track 1 etc. Not worth 175 quid. If I want a certain track out of the 400 odd albums I've got (obviously it can hold a lot more than that too) I can find it quick and easy. 495 tracks isn't a lot in this day and age.
    #39
  40. Nelson_R32
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    Nelson_R32 Member

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    If the Audi iPod intergration is so **** and doesn't display track names. Buy it from another supplier...

    ...but of course, don't think that will be any better as its the CD Changer interface in the headunit that causes the lack of track names. Not the iPod connection itself.

    Audi have had a fixing kit for Gen 2 iPod's since about April, get with the programme! ;)
    #40

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