iPod Classic in an Audi S4

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JMG

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One of my main goals was to get something semi-integrated with little to no wires. Ideally just ONE wire that will both charge my ipod and send clean audio to my NAV/Radio unit. I didn't want a separate wire to go to my cigarette lighter or anything, as it adds clutter and wires. I wanted it to be entirely black and free from noticeable design cues to match my black interior. Here's my interior right now:


On the steering wheel are radio controls that double as the cellphone bluetooth interface.


I wanted to control the playlist and song selection through the steering wheel, but still maintain control through the ipod for more advanced functions. I also wanted to mount the ipod close the radio controls for easy access, but also be able to simply dock the ipod without much effort to hide it in the armrest/glovebox for when I park the car.

After some research I found the DICE iPod adapter here:

The model number suggests that it's for VWs, but it actually interfaces with my glovebox CD Changer. Actually, it REPLACES the CD Changer and renders it useless. As I never use CDs anyway, and I still have the single DVD/CD changer in-dash, I don't mind losing the CD Changer.

I also paired it with the DICE iPod cradle:


This cradle allows the wire to be plugged into the back of the unit, and has several adapters for different sized ipods, perfect for the 160gb Classic and other ipods that I have. The dock also has a video out function that, if I was so inclined, could run to my NAV unit to watch movies.

It also works very will in that I can just lift the ipod in and out without having to mess with the cable or pinch any releasing buttons. On my old Audi, I had it setup where I had to slide my ipod into the mount, then attach the cable. Then, when I wanted to put it away, I had to pinch the releasing buttons on the cable (much like the apple usb cable) to release it, then lift the ipod out:
(old iPod in my old Audi A4)

As you can see the cable would be left dangling there if the ipod were removed.

With the DICE cradle I can just lift it out with minimal fuss, and there was no cable left dangling.

As for mounting plate I chose the PROCLIP angled mount at http://ww.proclip.com I don't have to remove the radio to install it, and it doesn't require drilling.

Here are the final results... Sorry for the crappy pics, it was getting dark and things get grainy.



The DICE cradle allows for a bit of rotation so I was able to get it to tilt a little bit to match the orientation of all the other components and the slant of the center console bolsters. Looks pretty good imho. The only thing I don't like is the white DICE logo. I'll have to figure out a way to remove/mask it tastefully. The black Ipod Classic also goes well with my black and carbon fiber interor.



See that wire coming out of the top? It's actually running behind the proclip mounting plate, so there is no loose wire hanging out from underneath the ipod. Very clean. The wire runs up and behind the carbon fiber trim. There is a little space behind the trim where I wedged the wire into. It runs right to the top of the CD changer in the glovebox (sorry no pics), so even with the glovebox open, it's nice and wire free... all you see is the CD changer and a wire coming out of the top to the top of the glovebox. Audi was smart enough to leave a small gap between the CD Changer and the surrounding CD mount for a wire. The glovebox opens and closes like normal without any wires to get in the way at all.

Functions:

With the DICE cradle and wiring kit the Ipod comes on when I start the car. I access the ipod through the CD CHANGER button on my Nav/Radio. It charges while it plays and I can use the steering wheel to go to the next/previous track. I can also choose one of 6 CDs in my radio to function as a way to navigate the ipod. For instance, if I have CD 1 selected, my steering wheel buttons chose next/prev song. With CD2 it's next/prev playlist, with CD3 is next/prev album, etc... I haven't read the manual completely yet so I don't know all these functions, either way all i wanted was next/prev song, so I am happy.

Volume is controlled by the radio, which is also controllable by the steering wheel. I DON'T LIKE IT when other setups give you volume control on the ipod, because that usually means that the optimal volume is at approx 75% of max volume on the ipod. Even then, you can never be sure. If you are just a little over the optimum volume on the ipod, you get distortion and just bad sounding audio. Good setups give you volume control on the radio, as it's closer to a true line out.

Also, with volume control on the radio, my radio also lowers the volume when navigation information is told through the speakers... but only when it knows the volume of what your listening to is too high for you to hear the directions... a nice function you wouldn't get if the ipod was controlling the volume.

My ipod also pauses when I switch to radio or switch to the cellphone bluetooth functions. It also resumes play when I go back to the ipod. These are just more nice functions that minimize me having to hit play etc, and take my eyes off the road.

Overall I love this setup and I highly recommend it. My only complaint is that sometimes the ipod pauses if it gets fully charged... quite annoying, but I can just hit play again. Not sure if this is a DICE or an IPOD problem. The ipod uses the line power anyway once it's charged, so you only get this pause once during your drive. The audio is clean and distortion/static free. I've tried FM transmitters and Tape adapters, and they all sound like crap compared to this. IMHO if you are a fan of music, and you can afford a $350 160gb ipod, then you should be able to afford to listen to it the right way in your car. In theory your HUGE 160gb music collection is worth WAY MORE, or you just want to have the biggest/expensive ipod just because you CAN. So shell out a little more $ for the right setup. That's my opinion anyway. Here's a breakdown of the expenses without tax and shipping and rounded off:

DICE wiring kit: $145
DICE cradle: $54
Proclip Mounting plate: $35

TOTAL: ~$234.00

This works for my Nano, my wife's Nano, my 60GB 5G, and my 160gb Classic.

Lastly here's a gratuitous shot of my giant ipod player:

It's a limited edition (#33 of 250) Audi S4 25quattro. All wheel drive, 6 speed, 340hp, carbon fiber front lip/rear spoiler/interior trim, dual exhaust, sport suspension, DTM body kit, and Recaro interior.
 
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n3tfury

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i can't believe nobody posted a reply. that's slick and sano man, in a gorgeous car. nice job.
 

HyeWarrior

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You're car interior is so sexy.... Mind posting pics of the outer part of the as well? :p

Big Audi fan here, sister has a 2004 Audi A4 Brilliant Red... Currently trying to save up to finance an A5 in a couple of years hopefully
 

JMG

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HyeWarrior said:
You're car interior is so sexy.... Mind posting pics of the outer part of the as well? :p

Big Audi fan here, sister has a 2004 Audi A4 Brilliant Red... Currently trying to save up to finance an A5 in a couple of years hopefully
Thanks guys! Yeah, I love the A5. Before I went with the S4 it was between an A5 or BMW 335i, but the coupes were just not practical for me since we are starting a family. I'm glad I went with the S4 though because I was able to find this one, which is a limited edition 25th Anniversary of Quattro. Only 250 in the world.

Looks like my old pics got taken offline, so here's more:




 
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jzimmerman25

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Just picked one of these up myself (#89 of 250) and am loving it. Sounds like we have a similar story (new baby so no-go on the coupes).

I've got a Dice in our X3 and love it but I have a question about using it in the Audi. As I understand it, there is no text (Song Title, etc...) from the iPod displayed on the Nav unit, but I think it may display on the screen in the instrument cluster, is this correct?

Also, can you confirm that there was no drilling required to use the ProClip? I think you said that in your original post but I just want to double check.

Thanks, and enjoy the ride!
 

JMG

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jzimmerman25 said:
Just picked one of these up myself (#89 of 250) and am loving it. Sounds like we have a similar story (new baby so no-go on the coupes).

I've got a Dice in our X3 and love it but I have a question about using it in the Audi. As I understand it, there is no text (Song Title, etc...) from the iPod displayed on the Nav unit, but I think it may display on the screen in the instrument cluster, is this correct?

Also, can you confirm that there was no drilling required to use the ProClip? I think you said that in your original post but I just want to double check.

Thanks, and enjoy the ride!

NICE! Congrats on the S4 and the baby!

YOu are correct, text is not displayed on the radio or the instrument cluster. I heard there is a kit that does that for the VWs that have the same system as what we have in our cars, but it basically gets rid of your satellite radio. The satellite radio "channel" allows text on screen so it takes advantage of that. Again, I am not 100% sure it is for our cars, I've heard its for the VW. I have satellite radio so that option is not for me so I didnt look into it further.

The proclip requires to drilling whatsoever but getting it in took some elbow grease and a tiny bit of courage. You basically force it in btwn the radio and the housing.
 

JMG

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UPDATE: The DICE unit now comes with a new cable that allows for charging of the iPhone 3G. Works great.... pics coming soon.
 

JMG

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I got the upgraded 5V cable for the iphone and it works perfect. Iphone charges and plays just like the ipod. Controls are available through my stereo, steering wheel and iphone itself:

 

americadan01

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carbon fibre trim

Hey I got one of these but the normal a4 version. I was wondering did the carbon fibre trim come standard if not where the hell did you get it from cus it looks awesome and I really want to get it for my A4. Thanks
 
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