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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #1
Ok so first off it should be obvious to all that I'm completely OCD and I like projects... I want my car to look and perform exactly the way I want. :crazy:

So here's what I'm thinking:

1. I want it to look stock so I'll be using the japanparts console plate to return my console to proper double din
2. Replace the head unit with the Kenwood DNX7140
3. I want my steering wheel to work and without the SWI Jack flakiness so I'm going to try this CAW-SB1570 which is the EU standard interface to connect the Subaru steering wheel controls to the EU version of the DNX7140 which is the DNX7240BT. No idea if that will work, but I bet it does.

Kenwood Electronics UK Ltd. | Steering Wheel Adaptors

I'll post again to report on success or failure, but any thoughts or predictions?
 

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2010 Forester XS Luxury
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Ok so first off it should be obvious to all that I'm completely OCD and I like projects... I want my car to look and perform exactly the way I want. :crazy:

So here's what I'm thinking:

1. I want it to look stock so I'll be using the japanparts console plate to return my console to proper double din
2. Replace the head unit with the Kenwood DNX7140
3. I want my steering wheel to work and without the SWI Jack flakiness so I'm going to try this CAW-SB1570 which is the EU standard interface to connect the Subaru steering wheel controls to the EU version of the DNX7140 which is the DNX7240BT. No idea if that will work, but I bet it does.

I'll post again to report on success or failure, but any thoughts or predictions?
Which Forester model/year do you have?
I'am also in for that option, only the Pioneer Avic F10BT (same as Avic Z110BT) is my favorite, till now!!

Theo
 

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2010 Forester
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Just finished an audio install (actually worked with the BestBuy install guy, I unbolted the front seats while he ran wires). I installed the el cheapo Pioneer Avic U310BT, an Alpine PDX 2.150, a Kenwood SW-1 subwoofer, and Alpine s-series speakers.
On the Avic u310BT I subbed out the OEM microphone with a Garmin unit.
The install even at BestBuy took almost 9 hours! but the results compared to the factory unit is abs. incredible. I wanted decent sound and am very impressed; also got direct control over my ipod or zip drive, an accessory spot if a passenger has a zune, navigation (though not Garmin based), and the bluetooth connect with my BlackBerry is great.
What I didn't get was the use of my steering wheel controls, they are lost for the moment but the BestBuy guy is researching the solution so I'll go back in a week for another round.
The little Avic is clean looking in the dash and since it has a myriad of colors (and you can customize via pc software) I've got an excellent match with the OEM red.
If any are intersted in the Avic u310bt know that a firmware update is available for download that solves all problems the unit had.....the only negative is that it ships with preciouc few POIs and they want you to buy for an additional $100 a POI sd card...I did buy it and now the el cheapo unit has 12 million POIs.
 

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1996 SVX
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[Best Buy installed a Pioneer Avic U310BT, an Alpine PDX 2.150, a Kenwood SW-1 subwoofer, and Alpine s-series speakers.]
...
What I didn't get was the use of my steering wheel controls
The problem is that none of the aftermarket radio install harnesses includes the two SWC wires. See my pin-out here.

You can "steal" and transplant two more wires from a second harness, or tap into the factory wires.

Note that you'll also need a steering wheel interface module, the SWI-PS from PAC Audio, to convert from the Subaru's wheel to what the Pioneer wants to see.

Did the installer connect things so you could retain use of your center console aux input jack?
 

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2009 forester
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The SWI-PS is the easiest thing to install. I usually get things wrong the first time (as I did with the SWI-PS), but you can learn from my mistake. The unit requires switched power (accesory), ground, and another wire from the factory wire harness. In addition, there is one wire in the factory wire harness that has to be sent to ground (does not connect to the SWI-PS). Following these steps the programming is a breeze. In fact, the PAC audio website even provides specific instructions for the '09 Forester (and I assume earlier models as well). Anyway, just my two cents.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)
So here's where I am...

Installed the DNX7140 with the japanparts bezel and it looks tight! Everything looks stock and perfect.



As for the kenwood unit itself, I have had it freak out and reboot itself a hand full of times when i confused it with too many commands too quickly, but after upgrading the firmware no major issues.

The GPS as folks reported elsewhere fits perfectly just popped right between the clock and the top sheet of the dash. Reception is perfect.

I installed the HD radio module which works perfectly and sounds great. I was actually able to mount it on the little metal bar the factory ipod module used to be on right on top of the head unit. I would guess even with no bar there you could just velcro it to your head unit and jam it in there because it definitely fits. (Note be aware of the tiny toggle switches that need to be set on the module or it won't work right)

The bluetooth microphone I put up by the sunglass holder/overhead light unit. The easiest way is to just remove the sunglass holder thing and rout the wire into that cavity and back out the top of the headliner where it meets the windshield. Then just tuck it along the top and down the A pillar and back through the dash to the head unit. A bit of a hassle but a very effective install. Not very intrusive or even noticeable to casual observers and the sound quality is strong there.



I also bought a connector to route the stock mini jack in the center console into the RCA AUX in of the kenwood. ae64[dot]com is the place to get such a harness. Worked like a charm. Stock part still does what it's supposed to now.

For the Ipod I went with the stock arrangement with the cable coming through the back of the center console so I can use the stock ipod tray.



Installed my Alpine PDX-5 amp under the passenger seat. I know a lot of people like the cargo area for that but I always prefer short runs to underseat provided the setup is such that feet won't be in it. The alpine amp is so small its way out of foot range. It's supposed to be 75x4 + 300x1. It actually tested at 104x4 + 411x1. Everything worked as expected or better.

For speakers I went with Kicker KS600's. Sound great to me. Might be a little weak on treble but I accept that since I didn't want to drill holes in my door card for components. The highs still sound great at higher volumes. The bass is solid which is nice for the trips where I need to remove my sub box. I chose to run new 16 ga wires. There's posts on it here, but enough to say that job sucks hard. It worked, but it wasn't fun. I had all 3 seats out of the car etc...

I did use the Dynamat speaker install kit and I was very happy with the change in the way my door sounded. I also used some scraps I had to tighten up the baffles and that worked well. Lastly I just placed the furry side velcro pads on the wierd plastic supports you can see in Fliptwists pictures. That quieted them right up.

For sub I went with the preloaded RF Prime 2x10. It sounds awesome for my taste. I know big bass guys would probably sneer at it, but it's enough that I can make people outside the car feel queezy without any noticeable distortion. Also it's angled nicely so you can put it against the rear seats and they can still recline. It's easy to just take it out when I need the extra room.



Having nothing to do with my install, I love the way the sub becomes invisible with the cargo cover.



I have an ipod to USB adapter so i can use a thumb drive to update the startup image for the head unit without removing anything. Here's my current effort.



And that brings us to the grand finale which is to be attempted tonight. The Kenwood factory steering wheel control module. I got the Europe only Subaru specific harness Kenwood makes (CAW-SB2570) a few weeks back so i used it in the install and it worked fine. just cut off the ISO connectors and solder in the regular US kenwood connector. Today i just received the control module (CAW-RL2000) that plugs into the harness. I'll report back soon to say if it works with the steering wheel. If it does then I will be 100% satisfied OCD and all.

One side note... it's super hard to get these parts so this would only be for the commited perfectionist. Kenwood only actively sells these parts in Germany and Hungary as best i can tell. Several of the merchants i found told me it was a violation of Kenwoods distribution agreement to ship to the US. If it works out I'll find a way to help people find a cooperative seller.

Wish me luck!
 

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It sounds like a great setup. You need pics :)

Weird that the DNX7140 has issues with the SWI-JACK. I have a Kenwood eXcelon KDC-X791 and the SWI-JACK works flawlessly with it. I have the newer revision.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
Installed the Kenwood RL2000... works like a champ! No programming, no lag, no problems.

Updated above witha few pics of the final product.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #13
That's great news! About how much did the Kenwood SWC interface end up costing (after shipping and foreign exchange)? How large is the control module?
The cost was around $140 including the harness, the module, shipping, and exchange. Not a good option for the cost conscious. If there was good demand though I bet we could get them cheaper in a large lot. About $50 of that total was the shipping. If you work at it, it looks like you can get the module itself for around 39 euro each at retail. Perhaps with your wiring skills that's all you'd really need.

The module itself was perhaps 1.5" x 1.5" x .75". My guesstimation could be slightly off.. It's small and light enough that I didn't bother to mount it. I just plugged it in and dropped it in the void.

 

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Discussion Starter #14
I thought I would add a few splash screens I made for any DNX folks that stumble across the thread.





To load them up:

1) press and hold SRC and Volume Down Keys
2) press the reset button
3) release the reset button (continue to hold SRC and Volume Down until illumination activates)
4) connect USB thumb drive containing image file in the root directly
5) press "OEM image", the selection button will be grayed out until the files are seen on the USB device
6) select the image you want to use
7) press the reset button when you're all done to reboot the unit back in to the normal mode
 

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2000 Forester L
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Awesome work! I am a novice but I have done a few dozen systems just nothing this advanced or in depth. Job well done!
 
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