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"Tesla Style" 10.4 Android Radio Information

Discussion in 'Audio & Electronics' started by mdifilippo, Feb 16, 2018.

  1. mdifilippo

    mdifilippo Senior Member

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    This thread is designed to provide hands on feedback and information to the forum regarding the 10.4 Vertical Android Radio "tesla style". This is built upon the "Any tesla radio installs" thread which has grown to over 40 pages. I am not sponsored nor have any relation to any brands, companies, or sellers. All of the information in this thread is for educational purposes only and I will not be held responsible for any damages or issues should you decide to follow any of the information in this thread. Posts will be broken down in a somewhat categorical way and I'll provide as much information as I can. I welcome other's who own the unit to contribute but please keep the information in a concise manor.

    Unit Options and Where To Buy:
    • The unit itself is a 10.4 inch vertical touch screen device running android version 4.4.4. This is the ONLY version of android these units run and will ever run. If you see it advertised as higher version it is false (some companies "fake" the android version on the unit to read at version 6.0) The unit is not technically an android tablet but an android appliance, this along with the processor installed in the unit is the limiting factor to being able to upgrade the android version.
    • There are two versions available for purchase; 1/32 and 2/64. 1G of Ram and 32G of flash OR 2G of Ram and 64G of flash. Any other combination is false advertising and again can be "faked" on the unit itself.
    • I have personal experience purchasing from both Espony-cargo.com as well as PhoenixAndroidRadios.com. These units can be found on ebay, alibaba, as well as other sites.
    • Espony-Cargo.com as of 2/16/18 has a note that the unit is 1G of ram 32G of flash HOWEVER in the hardware parameters it is listed 2G ram 32G flash. I believe this is in response to multiple buyers (myself included) reporting them for falsely advertises the unit as 2G of ram. Espony-Cargo also offers minimal technical support all of which is through email.
    • PhoenixAndroidRadio.com offers both version and I can vouch that the 2G/64G is correct and verifiable via 3rd party apps. Phoenix also offers support via their Facebook page, email, and has a California based support telephone number. They are quick to offer up help.
    • To the best of my knowledge these are the EXACT SAME units no matter where you buy them from so long as the specifications (ram and flash) are correct.
    Link to buy it on PhoenixAndroidRadio and Espony-Cargo. Both sellers have a few discount codes floating around, all I'll say is take a look on their facebook pages and a quick google search should get you some results.
    Some stock photos of the units, real photos will be posted in other sections of this thread.

    [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  2. mdifilippo

    mdifilippo Senior Member

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    I am not going to go through the basic install, you will receive a couple different wire harnesses for the unit which are plug and play unless specified below.

    Features & Compatibility
    These units are designed for a large array of vehicles but in regards to the Ram it is compatible with 2013-2018 models. I have personal experience with it in a Ram 1500 and cannot speak to the likelihood of it working a 2500 or 3500.

    It will replace any version of the radio you have stock, personally I replaced an 8.4N Uconnect radio. The new unit WILL COME with a new bezel which replaces the existing radio bezel AND A/C controls. A/C controls will now be controlled via the unit's touch screen.

    When you purchase you'll need to notify the seller of what you currently have in your truck, they prefer pictures of the dash and will likely ask you a few questions to ensure what they send you if properly configured.
    A few things they may ask:

    • Auto A/C or Manual (7 or 4 speed fan)
    • Factory Backup Camera
    • Heated / Cooled Seats
    • Stock amplifier (9 speaker system)
    These settings are actually controlled by a setting in the unit under a "hidden" menu. There are three versions of the "operating system" for Rams. Ram LO, Ram Mid, Ram Hi. More on accessing these settings later. For example; my 2017 Ram 1500 Laramie has heated/ventilated seats, heated steering wheel, and Auto A/C my unit is set to Ram Hi.

    Factory Features & Integration
    • Steering wheel controls still function and can be programmed through the unit if needed.​
    • Factory Radio settings (such as auto-comfort, automatic wipers, ect) controlled through the Uconnect radio are still controlled via the new unit. Under "Console" are these settings.​
    • The cluster will not display certain relevant radio information I.E. GPS turn by turn, Current song playing. It will display "bluetooth" as well as the radio station playing (if am/fm). Other times it will likely display either the last of these used functions OR "aux". ​
    • If your radio has Factory GPS antenna connection you can continue to use the factory GPS BUT you must modify the connector on the new unit (not the factory plug) More on this below. The new unit will however come with a GPS modular which you can also use.​
    • There will be a harness for the AM/FM radio antenna​
    • SiriusXM will not work natively, the antenna does not plug into the new unit. You must use SiriusXM App with internet connection for satellite radio use.​
    • All Climate controls will work, from temperature control, to heated and ventilated seats. You can still control heated/ventilated via the buttons below the existing climate controls or on the touch screen.​
    • The AC converter harness MAY NEED to be modified to properly fit your factory AC plug. If the factory AC plug has a rib in the center of it you need to cut away part of the grey connector on the AC Converter harness provided with the new radio.​
    If A/C connector doesn't fit into the new harness you must cut away some material, the new harness may not be keyed correctly. See photo
    ac_connector.jpg
    • Factory USB & 3.5mm auxiliary inputs will work as long as you plug in the USB harness and the Aux L and Aux R when hooking up the new unit.​
    • Factory backup camera will work and only requires you to plug in the "camera" female pigtail to the "camera" male pigtail on the radio harness. You may pull up the backup cam either by shifting into Reverse, and or by pulling up "Cam" on the unit and picking "backup". You can keep the camera on display for any amount of time at any speed.​
    To modify the unit's blue locking connector for the factory stock GPS antenna cable you must remove the two keying ribs, this will allow the factory locking cable to plug in DO NOT remove the locking pin itself. This can easily be done with a sharp knife. Once cut the GPS cable will plug in and lock.
    GPSConnector.jpg
    Beyond Factory Features
    This is when we start to take advantage of replacing the factory radio. At this time it's important to understand we have retained AM/FM radio, backup camera (if your backup camera is currently displayed in your rear view camera IT WILL NOT work on the new unit, you must wire it to the new unit), Aux in, USB in, Bluetooth (calling & music), as well as GPS antenna (if followed the step above or installed supplied GPS modular). We do loose the factory SiriusXM service.

    Additional Cameras
    Aside from just a backup camera we now have 3 additional camera sources they are labeled as such; front, right, DVR. The Back, Front, and Right camera connectors can be found on the "Video input & output" harness, there are also pigtails for power but you do not have to power the camera form these unless you prefer. The DVR will be on a seperate harness with a green connector which will have the following pigtails; video in RCA female, IR, GND, ACC, B+12. If you wish to explore the DVR options use this harness.

    Amplifier Connections
    The harness labeled "RCA audio output line" is for connection an aftermarket amp. It has the following RCA female pigtails "RR" "RL" "FR" "FL" and a pigtail wire "sub".

    Additional video outputs
    On the "Video input & output" harness referenced in additional cameras you also have 2 additional video outputs, Video out1, and Video out2. These should work to push a video signal to additional monitors (like a headrest unit).

    Wifi & The Google Play Store
    I will preface this by saying; downloading apps uses a massive amount of data, much more than running an actual application will. If possible download apps off of your standard wifi not mobile data or limited data plan. To power up the unit before installing in your vehicle see the next post.
    To really take advantage of this unit you'll want a WiFi connection available. I am personally using a hotspot which stays in my truck for data, to the best of my knowledge and time with the unit these DO NOT have the ability to work with a simcard or get data via USB tether. Google Play Store is loaded on the unit from the factory and will allow you access to a LARGE variety of apps for almost any need. You can also utilize different "launchers" to get an interface layout you prefer. I am currently (as of 2/16) using Car Launcher Pro which allows form a great deal of customization.
    Factory Launcher (theme can be changed)
    IMG_20180207_205617.jpg
    Car Launcher Pro (can be customized many ways):
    IMG_20180215_194103.jpg

    Navigation
    Sadly no navigation app will interface with the digital cluster like the stock one did (it would show turn by turn in the cluster where the speedometer is). The perk though is you can use any navigation app you wish (dependant on if it needs data/internet). I am currently using Waze as my go to but many option are out there and Google Maps as well as Igo comes installed.

     
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2018
  3. adrianp89

    adrianp89 Senior Member

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    Maybe I missed it, but a few things that will come up: can you still change truck factory settings? Does radio info populate in cluster?
     
  4. mdifilippo

    mdifilippo Senior Member

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    Power up the unit out of a vehicle
    This is very useful if you want to preload apps and not use up all your mobile data, can also be useful or setting up and deciding on themes or different launchers as you will not need to keep the vehicle running.
    1. Grab the DVR green connector harness and plug it into the unit. All harnesses are keyed and will only fit one way. Connect a 12 volt power adapter to the appropriate pigtails. ACC and Bat+12V (red and white wires) should go to the 12+ on your power adapter and Ground should go to your 12-. The unit will then power on.
    2. You can use a paper clip to press the "reset" button the front bezel to initiate a "restart" with out having to unplug anything.
    3. Nothing else is required to be plugged in while you do this.
    4. No vehicle information will show up on the unit at this time.
    IMG_20180207_205626.jpg

    Bluetooth & Microphone
    The Ram comes stock with dual stereo microphone setup. If your ram is 13-16 the mics are located in the rearview mirror, if 17 or 18 they are in the headliner one above the driver and one above the passenger. Sadly these microphones DO NOT get utilized by aftermarket radios including this unit. The stock microphone is located in the unit's bezel on a separate PCB board.
    IMG_20180126_122441.jpg

    I opted to add an aftermarket microphone in order to place it in the headliner mimicking the stock uconnect microphone location. To do this simply unsolder the red and black wire from the PCB board and solder in place the corresponding wires of a new microphone. Note: you may want to attach a 3.5mm pigtail to the board so that you can connect/disconnect the microphone more easily versus hardwiring it directly to the unit.

    Bluetooth Limits
    To the best of my knowledge the bluetooth only acts as a device, it will not connect to other bluetooth enabled devices. For example; it will connect to a phone for calling and bluetooth music however it will NOT connect to a bluetooth relay control for controlling in an app.
     
  5. mdifilippo

    mdifilippo Senior Member

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    Thank you, added these points into the 2nd post under "factory features" to quickly answer. Yes you can still change factory settings that were previously in the radio menu and only some info populates in the cluster (see the 2nd post for updated info)
     
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  6. GMScreech

    GMScreech Junior Member

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    This is really great! thanks for all the information
     
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  7. adrianp89

    adrianp89 Senior Member

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    I would recommend to the company, if you are in touch with them, to add a Sirius connection for the SXV300 tuner. This way people can add satellite if they want to. From a manufacturing and software perspective, it should be pretty straight forward.
     
  8. mdifilippo

    mdifilippo Senior Member

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    These units are mass produced at some factory in China (assuming) at which time a handful of different resellers grab them, slap a price on them and sell them.
     
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  9. hoe...

    hoe... Senior Member

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    If you have the reverse camera in the mirror, the cargo cam output will be in the main wiring loom.
    If you want the reverse cam in the main display you will need to run a cable from the mirror to the unit.
    Or just run the cargo cam as rear cam. You can display the cargo cam this way for as long as you like, whether in reverse or running down the interstate.
    A USB dongle with Sim card will work as an internet connection if plugged in to the USB cable on the loom.
    I haven't tried using the factory USB port.

    Sent from my BLA-L29 using Tapatalk
     
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  10. gofishn

    gofishn Senior Member

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    Or, if you wish to use Back up camera, in main radio, simply spice into the main loom, on passenger side of truck dash. then run to radio video input.



    Right side of dash
    remove the side panel from the passenger side of the dash.
    The one at the very end of the dash.
    Plain-Jane, plastic panel that you never really see, account the passenger door covers it up, when closed.
    Yeah, that panel!
    Take it off, just hooked in there, no screws or nothing.

    [​IMG]


    See that hanging gray plug, yep that;s the one we want.

    Here is the other end of that plug Forgot to take a picture with it together.



    [​IMG]


    Dead center of the plug are the three wires needed


    [​IMG] .



    Bare Shield Wire, Green/Brown stripe is video or positive wire, Green with Orange stripe is negative wire.

    AGAIN, this is for factory installed rear view camera.
    If adding aftermarktet camera, the loom should still function, if you used factory video ends when you installed camera.
     

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