Android-based plug-and-play, OEM-look headunit discussion - Page 3 - Chevy Impala Forums
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post #31 of (permalink) Old 11-26-2018
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i have read up on the potential whining noise / interference.
one user mentioned he thought it was a ground loop on the wiring harness. but later tested by unplugging the antenna, cut a piece of plastic from the antenna where it meets the adapter and folded back the steel tabs so they would no longer touch the adapter. he claims the fix works as there is no longer any electrical noise. he also mentioned the mod did not compromise the radios reception..
hmm,,

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post #32 of (permalink) Old 11-26-2018
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JT, the same user i mentioned above stated he cut an orange wire for the back up camera? which allows the radio to continue to play even in reverse, i think i read yall talking about something like this earlier in the thread. but is there a setting to change to avoid cutting wires,,

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Quote:
Originally Posted by metaltexan View Post
JT, i have been looking at these unit for about a month but havent found any good install's for the 9180a, do you plan on making an install vid for youtubers?
i think i can handle the install with ease but am more intrigued on the set up you have been talking about, it sounds perfect. a youtube vid on that would be great,
I'm glad to help out when/where I can, but no, I won't be creating a YouTube video anytime soon... I'm old and not very "YouTube-inclined". :-) Personally, I usually prefer reading articles/forums over watching YouTube videos.


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Originally Posted by metaltexan View Post
i have read up on the potential whining noise / interference.
one user mentioned he thought it was a ground loop on the wiring harness. but later tested by unplugging the antenna, cut a piece of plastic from the antenna where it meets the adapter and folded back the steel tabs so they would no longer touch the adapter. he claims the fix works as there is no longer any electrical noise. he also mentioned the mod did not compromise the radios reception..
hmm,,
My noise issue was definitely not related to the antenna at all. When I was working on the issue, I even completely removed the antenna, yet the noise remained. I had two noise issues - the first was a hum and clicking noise, which I eventually realized was probably because I put the negative battery cable back on after installation, but didn't tighten it - I think that is what caused the main noise issue.

The second noise-related issue I had was a very minor alternator whine - but that went away completely when I disconnected my headrest monitors. I think I'll need to ground my headrest monitors to the same ground as my amp or amplified sub (right now, it's going to a completely separate gound).

I have a feeling that issues with the antenna adapter were resolved a while ago. You have to be careful not to read too much into experiences from older models since they change so frequently.


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Originally Posted by metaltexan View Post
JT, the same user i mentioned above stated he cut an orange wire for the back up camera? which allows the radio to continue to play even in reverse, i think i read yall talking about something like this earlier in the thread. but is there a setting to change to avoid cutting wires,,
No - you do not need to cut any wires for this - there is a setting for it in the settings menus. Again, I think this was from an older radio...

Regarding your PM's about performance - you don't have anything to worry about in terms of performance. This GA9180A is really fast (8-core processor and 4GB of RAM helps a LOT!). The older units were dual- or quad-core and some only had 1GB of RAM - so perfromance wasn't very good. The newer units are really fast without having to disable a bunch of stuff. For example, you really don't want to disable the Play store or Contact sync. Contact sync is needed if you want to setup voice dialing with the add-on "MTCDialer" app (otherwise, you can't voice dial).

Althought, I do recommend rooting just for Viper4Android alone. Viper4Android beings the sound quality to new levels.

I do still have some noise-related issues when my cell phone loses signal and the unit is trying to stream music. These radios are definitely not the best as noise-rejection! Makes you make sure everything is wired correctly - and even then, you may still have some noise issues in rare circumstances like if/when your cell phone loses signal! I may end up going with a real cell phone plan at some point, becuase while MetroPCS is acceptable for normal use, if you are going to be streaming music via your cell-phone hot-spot alot, you need cell service that wokrs really well. I have too many areas where I get no signal at all with MetroPCS (but it is like half of the price of a Verizon plan, so...). We'll see how it goes over time.
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post #34 of (permalink) Old 11-27-2018
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So glad you did this!

My Rosen has great sound with it's BBE, but every aspect of it has a quirk that makes me not like it. Turn up the volume when streaming from your phone, and you get the message to turn the volume up on your phone, which resets your screen. Or the fact that it could not play any MP3s I had purchased from Amazon, only the ones I encoded, or purchased from Google Play Music. I could go on and on, but you get the point. Every "feature" the Rosen has, has some weird quirk about it that really detracts about it. The only really good thing it has for it was sound quality and ease of install. It's not horrible, it's just old tech running on an old OS (WinCE).

Because of this, I first started looking at aftermarket solutions that supported Android-Auto, and eventually came across these Chinese units.
I limited my comparisons to the Android 8 units.
I also wanted it to have DVD/CD because I love lossless, even if I can't hear the difference. That and you never know when you end up with a new CD to listen to.
I also wanted a DSP chip on it. I've been spoiled by BBE, so I'll at least need DSP.

After comparing many of them, I rested on 2 to think about for when the time comes to buy.

The first one looks inspired by the many units GM used, Rosen, Advent, etc. It's $400. But it would look very factory, yet have all the full functionality of android. (Can't wait to put Torque on it).
Don't know if it has a DSP chip though. I would think if it did, they would mention it.
Android AutoShop's XV8


This one is a 10.1" setup that has the tablet lifted up from the unit. I like this idea as this would put what I need to see, closer to my field of view while driving, but not so high that it would block the air vents.
The tablet can also be tilted, and a 10" screen is hard to beat as well.
I do like knobs though, call me old school, and this one has no knobs.
It's also Android 8.1, and has a DSP chip.
XRROS 10.1" Android 8.1

I'd be sold on the XRROSS if not for the depth. I can't find it on there now, but at one point, I believe the dimensions were listed in mm, and when I converted it, It showed it as being 6.8" deep.
I know Crutchfield behaves is if only a 6.35" unit will fit in my 2013 LTZ, although I know another member had no problems installing a 6.5" Kenwood (or pioneer).
Just not sure if 6.8" will fit.

Anyway, that's where I'm at. Excited for you Jtrosky, keeps us informed of how you like your Eanon.

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post #35 of (permalink) Old 11-28-2018 Thread Starter
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I absolutely loved my Eonon when I was working with it on the bench, but the more and more I use it "in car" in the real world, the more noise-related issues I find. And I'm not so sure the sound quality is as good as I originally thought - even with an external amp. I love the functionality of full-blown Android, but they just use such cheap components (and design) in these things - there is a reason why you can get them for $275-$400, when the much less-powerful (spec-wise) Rosens, Advents and Dynavins are $800+. The Chinese just use low-quality parts and poor deisgn in order to keep the cost so low - not to mention the very limited R&D.

I'm not giving up on it yet, but I need to do some more troubleshooting to see if I can eliminate the "interference" noises when using an external amp in the car. My latest issue is that I bought a $20 Eonon dashcam (just records video to the SD/USB on the head-unit via a little camera you stick to the windshield, behind the review mirror). However, I realized this morning that when it's it use, it causes some new interference noises from the speakers. Nothing major, and it can't normally be heard while playing music, but these type of interference noises drive me crazy just knowing they are present. :-)

And I can't quite pinpoint it yet, but sound quality seems to be lacking a little - even with Viper4Android - despite my initial impressions. I may just need to spend more time getting it tuned just right (Viper4Andoid give you a ton of options).

I *think* that most, if not all, noise issues are only present when using an external amp. I don't remember hearing the noise issues when using the amp in the head-unit itself. I have read a LOT of complaints about noise-related issues when using the line-level RCA outputs on these Chinese units. I may try connecting everything via speaker-level outputs and see if that is any better. Both my amplified sub and my Kicker amp support line- or speaker-level inputs, so it's an option (but requires me to hack into the Eonon harness).

In general, I really like the unit, but both the Rosen GM1010 and the Dynavin N7 have spoiled me in terms of overall sound quality and quality in general. It's just that the software on those units is lacking and dated.

Regarding the Anroid units mentioned above, the AndroidAutoShop version is an Xtrons - and they are known for bluetooth and wifi-related issues (stops working requiring a reboot) They also ship from China and only have a one-week return period. The only advantage is the built-in DSP chip, but I noticed that they even quit advertising that lately, so not sure if they even have the DSP chip any more (but people have commented on noise issues even on the units with DSP chips).

The 10.1 inch unit is NOT a GM-specific, plug-and-play unit - so you would need to figure out a) how to mount it, and b) how to get steering-wheel, warning chimes and turn-signal sounds working. Basically, it has no CANBUS interface. So you'd need to figure out a way to mount it and a way to have it interface with the CANBUS system in your car. The GM-specific radios come with a GM-specific CANBUS box. You'd have to see if they offer one for that radio. And like you, I would miss having real knobs too much. :-)

My point here is that these things aren't quite as good as they initially seem (you know the saying - "you get what you pay for")... I *really* wish someone made a high-quality, GM-specific, full-blown Android radio.... But so far, I don't think that exists....

WIll keep working on the unit and report back though....
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Yeah, With the XRROSS, my worry would be the difficulty in getting the unit setup well with my Impala so I can use steering wheel controls, etc. It evidently does have a "universal" method that allows you to teach(?) it your controls when you hook it up, or it could just be bad english.

While the Xtrons unit from AndroidAutoShop is more GM-Specific, so likely much easier to install and plug&play, I also noticed they stopped advertising a DSP chip on it, which is disappointing.

I'm with you, the most appealing thing about these, is the OS. Android is so customizable.
I was looking at AndroidAuto stereos from Pioneer and Kenwood initially, when I started seeing these and though, why have Android Auto when you can have full on Android!
Google Maps is literally the best navi IMO. And all the functionality you can get by using Torque (to connect to OBD2) as well as streaming, etc etc. It's easy to get hyped up on it.
I'm still kinda 50/50 though. You can get a great Android Auto Stereo from the likes of Pioneer or Kenwood for $400, and KNOW they're gonna sound great and made with generally better quality components.
I guess I'll have to look more into the Android Auto.
I really want a stereo than can fully integrate with my phone. Like, when I'm driving, I don't want to even have to touch my phone when driving. Whether I'm changing a song playing on my phone, or having to press and address to start Google Maps Navigation. I'd like my stereo to be full featured, but also be able to make full use of my phone, so when I get in my car, I don't even have to take my phone out of my pocket, let alone mount it up on my vent.
I know these units support Screen mirroring, and I do think the Android Auto units do as well, I'll just have to do more homework.

If you end up connecting an Android unit that has a DSP chip, def let us know how it sounds.

Also, quick question. I noticed on some youtube videos, many of these units, when playing music, will either show album art, or a basic template image when no album art is available.
Is there a button to bring up a graphic equalizer? If not, can you download a different playback app that supports one?
Have always loved those, always made sure whatever stereo I bought had on.

2013 LTZ

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Quote:
Originally Posted by kamikazeedriver View Post
Yeah, With the XRROSS, my worry would be the difficulty in getting the unit setup well with my Impala so I can use steering wheel controls, etc. It evidently does have a "universal" method that allows you to teach(?) it your controls when you hook it up, or it could just be bad english.
There are two types of steering wheel controls. There are the generic "resistive" type and there are the type that work through the CANBUS network. All of these units support the resistive type without any special hardware - but since ours is the CANBUS type, you need special hardware to make it work. Generally speaking, you also can't reprogram the CANBUS type like you can with the resistive type - the mapping is pre-programmed in the little CANBUS box. There are some hacks to change the CANBUS programming as well, but they are hacks that work with varying degrees of success. But the remapping that is built into these units is only for the resistive type.



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While the Xtrons unit from AndroidAutoShop is more GM-Specific, so likely much easier to install and plug&play, I also noticed they stopped advertising a DSP chip on it, which is disappointing.
Not sure what is up with those AndroidAutoShop units. They removed the DSP info from the description, but they do still show the DSP screenshots. You'd have to ask them to be 100% sure.



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I'm with you, the most appealing thing about these, is the OS. Android is so customizable.
Yes, full-blown Android is nice because you can customize anything and everything. However, there are also some "cons" to this type of setup. For example, the user interface is no longer consistent across the different device functions. Since you are using "independent" apps for each function, the user interface is completely different when you move from radio to music player to video player, etc.. No consistency in the user interface whatsoever. Also - with power and flexbility comes complexity. You'll spend a LOT of time getting things setup the way you want (and the way that you've come to expect a car radio to work)...



Quote:
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I was looking at AndroidAuto stereos from Pioneer and Kenwood initially, when I started seeing these and though, why have Android Auto when you can have full on Android!
Google Maps is literally the best navi IMO. And all the functionality you can get by using Torque (to connect to OBD2) as well as streaming, etc etc. It's easy to get hyped up on it.
I'm still kinda 50/50 though. You can get a great Android Auto Stereo from the likes of Pioneer or Kenwood for $400, and KNOW they're gonna sound great and made with generally better quality components.
I guess I'll have to look more into the Android Auto.
I'm not a huge fan of AndroidAuto - but I also haven't spent much time with it. It just seems to very "basic" to me. But then again, most people want the radio interface to be simple and "basic", I guess. I may eventually explore the AndroidAuto app on my Eonon, just to see if I end up liking the simplicity it brings to the front-end....



Quote:
Originally Posted by kamikazeedriver View Post
Also, quick question. I noticed on some youtube videos, many of these units, when playing music, will either show album art, or a basic template image when no album art is available.
Is there a button to bring up a graphic equalizer? If not, can you download a different playback app that supports one?
Have always loved those, always made sure whatever stereo I bought had on.
First, since you can use any app you want for music playback, the interface all depends on what app you're going to use for "local" music playback. The stock music app that comes with these Android head-units is kinda cool looking, but it's VERY limited in functionality. Bascially, it plays folders of music files. There is no way to show all music by a certain artist or any other "organization" functionality. Just directory listings of the music. I can't see ever using the stock music app. I've settled on Poweramp myself - but there are TONS of good music players to choose from! Some players have a built in EQ (Poweramp, for example), but I don't use it. I installed and use Viper4Android as a "global" EQ (and much more). There is a stock "9-band" EQ, but it's really just a 3-band EQ with 9 sliders. :-) In other words, it's "fake".

The only problem with Viper4Android (or any other non-stock EQ) is that it doesn't have any effect on CD/DVD or FM radio - those functions bypass the Android sound-sound system completely and interact directly with the MCU. Personally, I never use FM or CD anymore, so it's not a problem for me - but I will eventually set things up so that when the FM or CD player is active, it will use the stock EQ - otherwise, it uses Viper4Android.

Viper4Android even has BBE "convolvers". A convolver is a system that combines a bunch of different audio characteristics (EQ, reverb, volume, etc) - and captures them into a very small .wav file (like 1 second long) - and then those sound characteristics are applied to the music you are playing. That is a terrible explanation, but it is VERY cool feature! There are hundreds of different convolver files out there that you can use for free to completely change the way the radio sounds (if using Viper4Andorid) - and of course, you can then fine-tune it even more with the 10-band EQ and other effects that Viper4Android has.

I *so* wish that someone made a *high-quality* full Android plug-and-play unit for the Impala - with high-quality audio components (high-quality DACs, 4V pre-outs, etc), high quality IPS screen, etc. But that just doesn't exist. 90%+ of the Andorid radios out there are actually made by the same manufacturer (and are the same thing really) - Xtrons, Eonon, Pumpkin, Hizpo, etc are all just resellers that put their name on it and re-sell it. They don't really make anything themselves...

I'd *gladly* pay $800+ for a high-quality Android head-unit...
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For what it's worth, I did a little troubleshooting on my Eonon head-unit, Kicker amp and Pioneer under-the-seat sub. I went back to basics and connected just the had-unit itself (no amps or subs) and I don't seem to have any noise-related issues that way. I don't think it's my amp or sub wiring, becuase I used those same devices with other head-units without issue, so I suspect it's the line-out jacks. They must just not be "isolated" properly and pick up noises easily from other components inside the head-unit. Either that or the noises are also present on the regular speaker-output wires as well, but you just don't hear them becuase the internal amp is less power than my external amp - but I don't think that is the case, becuase even at full volume, I don't hear any noises when using the speaker-level outputs.

With the amp connected to the line-out jacks, I hear noises when the system accesses USB devices, some wifi transfers, dashcam (well, that is a USB device too), when I turn the lights on (but only if the car isn't running!?), etc.

So in order to try and avoid cutting into the main Eonon harness, I have some parts on the way and will try using the speaker-level outputs of the headunit next (speaker level outputs to my amp and amplified sub - both of which accept line- or speaker-level) - then see if the noise-related issues come back. If I'm lucky, everything will be ok using the speaker-level outputs instead of the line-level outputs....

Will report back...
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Got my unit delivered, hooked everything up before getting in to the car, was a simple uninstall of old unit as well as a simple install of the new Eonon 9180A. Had to fiddle with GPS location (not satisfied with current location) as well as the speaker and mic.
Covered the speak with electrical tape like everyone else as it's really load. Snapped the mic to the passenger air bag light wire. Have not tried talking to google, and the steering wheel hold to talk doesn't work. Will look at tomorrow.
I have No noise issues thus far, the D and C power connections were pre connected, which one is the power with amp (bose), and power without amp .
Had an issue with connecting WIFI at home, but it finally connected and is all good.
Any advise on getting GPS in a really good position?
Now have to install back up camera,
Blue tooth was a snap,
Will soon root so I can add any apps to home screen,
Torque is Awesome to see live.
Will try USB, DVD, micro usb, mirror cast and split screen tomorrow.
The screen is great in day and night, I did add the screen protector and helps with favorable dimming.
Highly recommend.

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So you are not using the RCA line-out harness, correct? I also don't have any noise-related issues unless i use the RCA line-out jacks to connect an external amp and sub - that is when the noise issues come into play....

Do you have Bose or non-Bose? I've also read a lot of complaints about noise issues with the Bose system.

Regarding the GPS antenna - this is the best location I've found (never have any GPS signal-related issues when the GPS antenna is installed here - regardless of what radio I'm using) - thanks to @Tesla for this pictures! This is on the passenger side, under the defroster panel:


And this is a close-up where you see how the antenna is "nestled" between two bolts:


Hope that helps.

While waiting for my parts to come in, I'm going to leave the head-unit connected without any amps or subs. I expect I'll be noise-free that way. But at the same time, I need my amp and powered sub! :-) I'm just so used to the added power and low-end that I don't think I can go without it at this point.

Wait until you get Viper4Android installed. Makes a huge difference in sound quality compared to the "fake" stock 9-band EQ!
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I plug everything up exactly like the Eonon site diagram,
https://www.eonon.com/mobile/Chevrol...uto-Radio.html

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The installation instructions were useless, so used the eonon site, help out with the in and out jacks, matching label and wire colors.

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*Bose setup,,

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Hmm - since you have the Bose system then you acutally are using the line-out connections (just not the RCA connectors themselves - different harness for Bose and aftermarket amp even though they connect to the same port on the Eonon). I'm curious if you have your music playing and then pause the music (without muting the radio) - you don't hear any noise from the tweeters? What about when acessing USB devices while it's paused (or even turning on the headlights while it's paused and the car isn't running)?

Like I said, the noises aren't something that will immediately draw your attention unless the music is paused or during very quiet parts of the music. I didn't think it was a big deal at first, but I started noticing it more and more as time went on during certain situations.

The Bose harness does have that little black box on it that does *something* - I think it raises the line-level output levels for the Bose amp (I've read that the Bose amp expects higher-than normal input signal voltages). Maybe that plays a part as well.

I guess it also depends on how "critical" you are of your audio sysem. I tend to be more critical than some. I don't like little noises and other imperfections in the audio, so I tend to be a little more critial of head-units than some when it comes to sound quality (I'm also coming from the Dynavin and Rosen head-units, which had really good audio components and sound quality, so maybe it's just a "in comparison" type of thing).

I'll be experimenting more today and will report back.

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So I did a little more testing today and found that the significant hum noise when the headlights are turned on is actually due to the LED backlighting on the head-unit buttons! If I have an amp connected to the RCA line-out jacks and activate the LED backlighting (at least with car not running - not 100% sure if it also happens when car is running), there is a significant hum noise from the speakers - unless the LED backlighting is at full-on white (red, green and blue at their highest) or full-off (backlighting off). I did read about this issue on XDA-Developers too - but didn't think it affected the Eonon - but it does - at least if you use the RCA line-out jacks.

I think the only way to get a (hopefully) noise-free system when using an external amp is to forget about trying to use the crappy line-level outputs and use the spaeker-level outputs instead - at least I'm *hoping* that works out better...

This is the type of stuff that I was afraid of when dealing with these inexpensive Chinese units. I absolutely love the fact that they run Android, but the internal hardware quality seems to be lacking. You have to decide if you are willing to live with the trade-offs - or find work-arounds.

So, to recap - here are some of the "cons" of these units (that I've found so far):
1. If you want to use the supplied line-out harness to add an amp, you have to deal with:
- Head-unit button LED backlighting causing interference noises.
- Interference noises when using USB devices, *especially* the Eonon-branded dashcam.
- Really low line-ouput voltage from the RCA jacks (I have to turn amp gain up much higher than with other head-units - and also hear more "background hiss" and interference when doing so)
2. Crappy turn-signal/warning chime sounds from external "stick on" speaker
3. No XM tuner
4. Head-unit button LED backlighting does not dim when dimming the rest of the interior lights
5. The is no independent navigation voice volume control like other head-units I've used
6. The "9-band" EQ is really a 3-band EQ with extra "fake" sliders to make it look like a 9-band EQ (the internal sound processor only supports 3-bands!). :-)
At this point, I'm really considering going back to the Dynavin. I'm just not willing to sacrifice sound-quality for the Android interface.

I'm going to try using speaker-level outputs tomorrow to see if that will avoid the noise-related issues when using an exernal amp. If not, I'll definitely be going back to the Dynavin. As much as I love the flexibility of Android, I'm just not willing to sacrifice sound quality to have it.

It's a real bummer. I was really hoping this would have worked out better after how well things went "on the bench". I guess if you just want to use it with the internal amp, it would probably be ok (assuming you are ok with the other non-sound-related cons). I do feel the sound quality is lacking a bit either way though - at least compared to higher-quality aftermarket head-units (probably still better than the facotry head-unit sound quality though).
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Dynavin N7 Plug and Play, OEM-Look, DVD/Navigation Head-unit Status/Discussion jtrosky Audio, Video, and Electronics 29 01-18-2019 07:37 AM


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