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Is there a harness available for aftermarket headunits to display in DIS?

Discussion in 'A4/A4 cabriolet/S4 forum(B6 chassis)' started by Az, Apr 30, 2013.

  1. Az
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    Az Hard slammed!

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    [Apr 30, 2013]
    Hi all,

    Originally posted this in the ICE forum but its quite clear that it's no where near as active in there as it is in here, so thought if copy and paste it to see if anyone can help here......

    I was just wondering if anyone know if there is a harness available on the market for aftermarket headunits to display infomation at the top part of the DIS like an OEM headunit would?

    I have a Pioneer AppRadio headunit in a B6 A4 and I miss the top part of the display on my DIS showing station names/presets and track numbers/names etc. It annoys me that the top part of the DIS is blank unless the petrol or any other warning is up on the display.

    Any help would be appreciated,

    Cheers,
    Arron
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  3. Mart77
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    Mart77 Member

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    [Apr 30, 2013]
    Some aftermarket back in the day could do it however I don't think the market was big enough for it and never really took off, I can't think of any units that allow this feat :(.

    Basically people like connects 2 started making the leads the all the main brands stopped putting the feat on their head units.


    ps alpine did something if I remember correctly but it was for their own units
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  4. Az
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    Az Hard slammed!

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    [May 1, 2013]
    Cheers mate. So it has to have the feature in the headunit itself and then a harness to transfer the infomation to the DIS then? You can just get a harness which effectively 'takes' the infomation from the headunit to display it on the DIS?

    Im right in thinking its canbus which feeds the info to the DIS from the original headunits/RNS-D/E's aren't I?
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  5. Mart77
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    Mart77 Member

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    [May 1, 2013]
    Yeah pretty much m8, like I said loads of units came with that feat years ago I can't remember seen a unit with one for maybe 5+ years.
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  6. Royston80
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    Royston80 New Member

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    [Oct 18, 2013]
    Az, if this was a boat, I am in it! I have a Pioneer DoubleDin touchscreen and would like the DIS to display "track", "source" and so on... I have searched and searched and asked and asked many sources and I have been assured that this is currently not possible.

    One AV shop said to me that this IS possible but supposedly to break into the DIS display requires a royalty to be paid to Audi from any third party. I don't know how true this is. (If it is true it may make it prohibit-ably costly)

    Are we not essentially talking about studying lots of wiring diagrams and either getting an additional patch-lead made or connecting (yet more) wires at the back of our head units?

    Surely this IS possible-Audi do it!?

    Does anyone have an Electronics Degree on ASN? :)
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  7. B5NUT
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    B5NUT Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 18, 2013]
    It's not about hacking into the DIS, what is required can-bus adapter so the radio sends information and converts it to infotainment can-bus that the car can understand. (This can be done, just look at all the Bluetooth copies and video input, that are available and all communicate on the infotainment can-bus) The problem 3rd part head unit manufactures have, is the vast make of cars available and they all have different can-bus software, or another proprietary way of sending information to the cluster.
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  8. PetrolDave
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    PetrolDave Well-Known Member

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    [Oct 18, 2013]
    +1
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  9. Royston80
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    Royston80 New Member

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    [Oct 19, 2013]
    Thank you B5 for the info. So in reality how/where could I get this moving? Clearly the standard OEM HU's (Concert, Chorus and Symphony) all have this "magic" within their internals. Where would I start to either extract this from my old HU or is there a specific point within the Pioneer HU that I can take this info from?

    Presuming I could find this "pickup" point within my Pioneer, is it a case of bolting on the data portion to convert this information into a CanBus language/version that DIS can display?

    I feel a project coming on!... I just hope I don't start frying HU's next!...
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  10. B5NUT
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    B5NUT Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 19, 2013]
    Well you would need to understand the basic working of can-bus, and start finding information on the Audi infotainment can-bus.

    You could use one of these to get this information from the can network Development Tools Product Detail Page

    Also before you start you need to find out if the HU you have outputs any information at all, if it does not then your stuffed, if it does then you need to understand what commands and information is being sent out. The HU manufacture may supply that information and even have an SDK....

    Then you would need to build a device that would covert the HU commands and information into the Audi infotainment can-bus language.

    I looked at this a while ago, and I just did not have the time to spend on a project like this, but if you were going to make these devices & sell them then it may be worth the time & effort.

    So to cap it off unless are a software engineer with a good working knowledge of electronic engineering and programming IC's then you have no chance, if you do then this could be done.
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2013
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  11. Mart77
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    Mart77 Member

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    [Oct 19, 2013]
    I really admire you trying to get your cluster working off the HU. Even if audi can break into it nobody will make a patch lead because demand would be so low :(.

    Like I said fair play if you give it a go but frying your head unit is the last thing I would worry about lol, trust me don't **** with the can bus :s you get that wrong and you'll be in a whole world of pain :(
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  12. B5NUT
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    B5NUT Well-Known Member VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 19, 2013]
    Unless you do something stupid like send 12v down one of the bus line then you should be OK, also this is on the infotainment bus, so if this fails it won't affect the engine or the central locking or other security systems. However ever putting 12v down the infotainment bus may kill your cluster...
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