Pontiac Solstice Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
I have been a troll on this forum before I purchased my GPX so it's about time I give something back!

My goal of this thread is to document the installation of the Pioneer AVH-8500BHS. I do not intent to recreate the wheel as other threads have already done that. However I will relink all the reference materials.

Install Requirements:
• Maintain all current steering wheel controls
• Keep the monsoon amp and sub-woofer
• Keep chimes
• Parking Break Bypass

Why I chose the Pioneer AVH-8500BHS
•Display
o Removable Display
o Tilts, this is nice for a sunny day and cuts down on reflections in my opinion a must need for a convertible.
•Two USB ports one for the Phone and one for charging or USB Stick
•Supports SD Card
•Bluetooth
•8 Band EQ, and tons of configuration options
•High Quality and some level of future proof
•Compatible with my iPhone 5 and newer Droids for AppLync
oDashCommand DashCommand - Palmer Performance Engineering, Inc. Watch some of the videos on youtube it looks AWASOME!
o This will require a Bluetooth OBD-II reader to send the telemetry data for charting.
•DVD Player, Don't know if I will ever use this.


Parts list so far, everything is from Crutchfield
- Pioneer AVH-X8500BHS DVD Receiver
- PAC C2R-GM11 GM Radio Integration Adapter
- General Motors In-dash Receiver Kit
- Chrysler/GM/Ford Antenna Adapt Motorola M to OEM antenna F
- PAC SWI-RC Steering Wheel Radio Control Interface
- Apple lightning to HDMI Adapter

Stuff i already own:
- Short HDMI Cable
- Apple lightning to USB adapter

Stuff i need to get:
- OBD-II reader Bluetooth or Wireless, interested to see if i could use a usb version an a non-powered USB hub.


Reference Links:
-A mandatory read The self proclaimed "official" Pioneer D3 install Thread"
2013 Pioneer and Apple Compatibility Chart
- Kappa Wiring Diagram (E-Book - Kappa Sound System Diagrams )
PAC SWI-RC Document
- PAC GM Radio Integration Adapter (C2R-GM11) - Adapter for connecting the Pioneer to the stock cars wiring harness. Document
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
3,923 Posts
lots of pictures please !

:cool:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Picts

A couple pictures i could not find on the web.

The front display at max angle.
Note: Off / On cycles move the face to a normal default position (flat).

The face is LARGE and barely fits in the surround. When adjusting the angle or removing the face it's very important to literally feel the surround to make sure it's not rubbing and not binding. Took me the better part of 20 minutes to get is centered correctly.

Hint: use a light behind the unit and look for gap. May have to heat up and or sand the surround for that extra 1/64th of an inch (I hope not).

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Picts

the unit with the front face removed.

Notice the security flap slid in front of the SD Card slot preventing unauthorized removal and blocking other ports.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Good and Bad

I have everything but the PAC SWI-RC Steering Wheel Radio Control Interface installed and it's a very impressive unit. It sounds so much better than stock. I flipped back and forth between the two a couple times looking into other issues i will get into later and with an eq settings it's just better.

The i5 integration is easy (other then running wires and opening my wallet for the $$ cables) the Blue-tooth binding with automatic with a simple "allow" button from my phone. Quality is very good but will need to be retested because another issue (below).

All the wires where correctly color coded (so far) with the lone exception being the Illumination wire. That's orange/white to solid orange.

The only issue that i have found yet and it's going to drive me crazy :brentil: is a louder than acceptable hiss over the speakers during quite. I don't think it will be noticeable with the engine running but it's going to get me cranky every time i turn the car on and off. :devil:

Trouble shooting steps:
- Reinstalled the stock unit and was able to duplicate the problem to much lesser degree. During quite parts of songs there is some hiss. At this level it's totally acceptable.
- The hiss is definitely coming from the radio.
- On the pioneer unit i tried different inputs i5 to Bluetooth, HD Radio, Analog Radio and the hiss level is steady between the sources.
- Turned off all lights / power to reduce RF interference.
- Disconnected the rear speakers with the hope this may be something with the amp
- Double and triple checked all my connections and made sure they were correct and solid.
- Tapped the black ground wire and added a direct ground to the car frame and no change.
- Added another ground to the pioneer ground screw to the frame rail (stock ground location).

The only thing i can think of is to add a relay and a second power line? I don't want to go down this path unless i need too.

Any one have other ideas? My friend google didn't have many.
:grouphug:
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,212 Posts
I would have thought the additional ground would have cured it as usually that's the cause. some input adapters cause that too but since you are running RCA cords direct from head unit to amp, that shouldn't be the problem unless you have some cheap ones. if so, try a better set. Other than that, have you tried adjusting your amp gain? If it's too high, it might be the cause.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Figured it out did something stupid. All inputs are super quite!

Finalizing the wiring harness and will post picts soon.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
346 Posts
Could use some advice here,I just ordered a Pioneer AVIC X940BT head unit for my Mysterious Black 2007 GXP with upgraded radio Monsoon.Ok now that being said I am an old dude,never ventured into a headunit,radios ,no problem.Learned I had to purchase a GEX 920xm receiver if I wanted to keep XM, ND-TMC10 for traffic tuner for traffic updates(not sure how much I will use this), Axxess ASWC-1 to maintain steering wheel controls,not to mention Pyle PLCM18BC to have a backup camera.Can anyone tell me if I am forgetting anything?Where in gods green earth do I find the room for all this crap?Do I need to purchase a GM trim kit as well and if so which one?I probably will purchase a wiring interface cable so as to not have to butcher wires .Thanks for any and all input here,not really looking forward to remove all that plastic dash,my luck I will break it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I cross posted in the other thread with more details

1. You need a trim kit
2. There is space for all the extra wires, ex. Just make sure when you tape everything up you make sure that it's on the left rear of the unit lining up with the firewall hole. There is only a 1/8 inch or so of space behind the unit and the firewall. I found taping everything up worked nicely.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
346 Posts
Do you know which wire harness adapter kit I will need so I don't have to splice into the wire harness for the head unit?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
fosti:

I am not an expert my any measure the car radio I installed was in my 2000 Contour SVT when it was brand new. To be honest this install was several orders of magnitude more complex. I just researched the heck out of everything.

Also I am sure other people disagree with me with keeping the stock amp. True it does not have the most punch down low but overall i am very happy with the solution.

These are the parts i needed as listed in the first post. I did not cut any factory wires.
- PAC C2R-GM11 GM Radio Integration Adapter.
- PAC SWI-RC Steering Wheel Radio Control Interface
- General Motors In-dash Receiver Kit
- Chrysler/GM/Ford Antenna Adapt Motorola M to OEM antenna F

The PAC C2R-GM11 is just a simple harness that you connect the pioneer harness to. Everything connects as expected and is color coded correctly. Green to Green, Red to Red, Black to black.. I am sure you get the idea. The only exception was Solid orange goes to orange / white. You can't mess this up as there is no orange / white on the other harness. :)

With the monsoon system the stock solstice radio output is high voltage (~4 volts that matches up fine withe the pioneer unit ).

Not included in the first post is 2 high quality RCA cables (4 ends) that i just cut the end off of and spiced into the pioneer wiring harness. ( I could not find any RCA ends with leads at any local stores. ) The center post is positive and the out is negative. There is no separate sub wire as the monsoon system has it's own crossover.

The solstice wiring diagram has more details about the color codes but just looked at the instructions that come with the PAC C2R-GM11 and double checked. PAC's site has special instructions for the Solstice and make sure you get that version, it makes life a lot easier.

Connecting the PAC C2R-GM11 to the PAC SWI-RC was also simple just connect the Red, Black wires from the SWI-RC to the C2R-GM11 and connect the mini-headphone jack to the back of the head unit. The only thing missing from the instructions was connecting the light turquoise wire between the two kits, IIRC the GM11 had it labeled with a sticker as OWC something or OCW something.

There are a lot of extra wires not needed so I just cut the extra wires after making sure everything worked. :willy:

One thing that drove me :brentil: CRAZY :brentil: was the parking break relay bypass so you don't need to keep the parking break on to access all features. ( am still screaming in my head). The newer pioneers have a delay / or advanced logic prevents the simple relay. From what i can tell after adding some LED's and a digital timer the the pulse varies between boots (WTF?) no way a simple relay is going to work so I just called it a day and ended up adding a manual switch.

For the relay i just connect the parking break wire to a simple interruption switch and the other end to ground or the unit's enclosure and it works fine.

Overall it took me a couple days of 4 hour sessions to figure everything out and get it wired correctly, the relay is what killed me with waist-ed time.

I ran an extra 3ft USB cable off USB2 too the glove-box for passenger use.

I have pictures i need clean up and will post soon. Nothing good with the wiring harness.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,212 Posts
Not included in the first post is 2 high quality RCA cables (4 ends) that i just cut the end off of and spiced into the pioneer wiring harness. ( I could not find any RCA ends with leads at any local stores. ) The center post is positive and the out is negative. There is no separate sub wire as the monsoon system has it's own crossover.

You really need a line level adapter for this. but if it worked... Fry's have them for 15 bucks and there's simple ones and ones with adjusters. some are pretty bulky though.

Thanks. I'm interested on how to get the sub out and how to remove the stereo. please post some comments along with the photo's.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
TM06manual:

For pictures on how to remove the dash and stock radio please see the thread that's a sticky on the top of the forum "Mods - Audio & Etc" --> Dove into the dashboard... pics and info inside. This a nice level of documentation with pictures / instructions. To be honest i can't do anything better.

Thanks for the suggestion on the line level adapter but I did the opposite and this is what i messed up that generated the huuuuuuummmm.

The stock radio with Monsoon system is a line level output to the monsoon amp under the seat (I think drivers). So a line level adapter as i understand like the PAC SNi-35 is not required.

Out of the back of the head unit i have 4 RCA Audio cables spliced to the corresponding inputs on the PAC C2R-GM11. I am not using the radio's speaker level output, just RCA.

Conceptually as i read the diagrams
- Pioneer to RCA
- RCA striped and splice to PAC C2R-GM11
- PAC C2R-GM11 to Stock Wire-harness
- Stock Wire-harness to Monsoon amp / cross over in.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
2,212 Posts
Gotcha. Ok, will do. Thanks for your help.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
15 Posts
Discussion Starter #15
3 Month Update

3 Month update:

After living with the Pioneer AVH-X8500BHS a couple comments and thoughts. Overall very happy and it's been a fun little project, a couple things i could have done better ex..

The Good: :yesnod:
- Audio Quality: with the stock monsoon amp / woofer is noticeably sharper and clearer than stock. I have not used the pioneer microphone to set the levels. The base is noticeably better than stock but is not what I would consider impressive by any measure. This was expected and I am overall quite happy with the results.
- AppRadio: At first I had some problems with the i5 App and some of the settings ex, the manual sucks a donkey. After the last update its reliable and easy to use.
- Pandora, Bluetooth - It’s been 100% solid, quality is very high.
- Very, Very flexible - It this unit can’t do it most likely nothing else can.
- EQ – It’s a true QA with many levels and is detailed enough to get the job done and more. Over all it works as expected, and that’s a lot better than stock or many of the other competitors. This was critical for me as I have a parts bin of speakers installed.
- Dashcommand: ROCKS! This thing is so cool! I am almost done with the custome Sol dash. :cool:
- Cool Factor: Updates the dated / cheap looking stock Headunit
The Bad:
- AppRadio only allows “AppRaio Certified Apps”, looks like Pioneer / designer of the tech is attempting to create a “branding experience” BS.. they want to make their own eco system ($$$). Why keep my from using any app I own?? That being said the free GPS Apps and other certified apps work well. I just enter AppRadio mode and then use my favorite app like Google Maps and it displays correctly, I just can’t use the Pioneer display as a touch screen. For Jail broken phones there are apps to give full functionality.
- Glair: I don’t know if it’s fair to criticize pioneer on this but with the top down when it’s a sunny day it’s almost impossible to see the display. The good news is the buttons for general audio are large and easy to mesmerize the position. The hard buttons on the steering wheel and the head unit also work well.
- The manual sucks donkey parts, I had to use google a lot to figure out the functionality I wanted. Also had to hard reset the unit a couple times as I could no longer select my iPhone as a input. The fantastic error message “disable the input from both home screens”. WTF?? Proper design has only one home screen, or at least give me a hit what you want disabled (aargh)

If I could do it again:
- The extra price for the 8500 model for the removable and tilt screen was most likely not worth it as the tilt does not reduce glare / sun washout in any meaningful way. I would take a good look at new AppRadio3 (just released) or the AVH-5000 and keep the extra couple $$$ in my pocket.
- The harness I used for the turn signal is way to quite as it’s impossible to hear once it’s inside the dash. This is not a big issue but it would have been nice it actualy worked, and it was not a cheap part :brentil:. Hopefully this does not cause any problems for inspection (PA).
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top