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Discussion Starter #41
took one for the team and bought that AGAMA Launcher..

Verdict = do NOT buy! (lol)

that BIG logo front and center..theres options for other car logos but Maserati is not one of them

dont be too offended tho - ferrari and lambo weren’t options either ;)
I think Car Launcher Pro has the best look, IMO
 

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For those running Apple CarPlay, here's what I've found based on my initial use over the last few days. Overall it's very positive. If you're an iPhone user, then you should see a huge improvement.

Voice Control
Clicking the voice dictation button on the steering wheel causes any audio to pause. Then, I say "Hey Siri..." and make my request. The request can be to call someone in my phone's address book, to navigate to a known contact, POI or address, to play a specific song, or hear music by artist or genre. I can also dictate text messages. Of course all the standard Siri voice response stuff works when asking "What's the 5-day forecast" or random stuff like "Who was the 23rd president." I was surprised all this worked, and worked so well.

Audio
Music accessibility is great via my Apple Music subscription. I don't know if this is required or not. Audio quality is excellent. I don't have any balance issues. I also don't detect any feedback reported by others. Seems like the audio quality is better than I remember previously with USB direct connect from the glove box. I have not found a way to use the steering wheel buttons to forward/back the tracks nor any play/pause option. Sure would be nice. It doesn't seem supported so I tap the screen for this.

Navigation
Navigation works great. Voice control lets me dictate locations. My calendar is integrated so the map will suggest routing to my next appointment. Eerily, it also knows my commons destinations based on my daily activity. So, when I get into the car in the morning it suggests routing to my gym even though it's not on the calendar. The CarPlay navigation app is designed for the car, and is not a direct port of the mobile app. It's big, bright and nicely done. There's also a new 3-D view showing building elevations. One limitation is that I haven't found a satellite view. Only standard map display. Maps also connects to my Apple Watch and gives me a little jolt when I need to make a turn.

Phone
Calls are easy to make via Siri or by choosing a contact from the address book that appears on the unit. NOTE: Incoming calls need to be accepted and disconnected via the phone app on the unit. Clicking the phone button on the steering wheel launches the default Bluetooth dialer on the unit outside of CarPlay. Would be great to figure out a way to map this button as well.

One issue I'm having with the phone is that callers report an echo of their voice. I don't hear any echo. This is well documented online. It doesn't happen when the phone is connected via Bluetooth so it's got something to do with CarPlay. If I discover the fix then I'll post here. Maybe somebody else has already solved this one...

Messaging
I can see/hear when a new message arrives. Incoming messages can be read by Siri. Siri prompts me for my reply which I dictate. Totally handsfree. Using voice control I can also send a new messaging saying something like "Hey Siri...send a text to Michael..." Siri then prompts me through the dictation, confirms the accuracy of the message, and then sends it.

Connection
I wired two USB ports into the cigarette lighter port. Super convenient and looks totally integrated. So far, I've kept my phone in the cup holder and connected with a small 3-4" lightning cable. There's probably a more elegant way to do this. I connect my phone when I start the car. The unit boots up, ZLink starts and automatically finds my phone, and CarPlay launches. I don't have to initiate anything on the unit. Note that only one of the two USB ports will connect to CarPlay this way though. My phone charges while connected to CarPlay. The other USB port remains available to charge something else.

Interoperability
The way the various apps integrate through a common command portal is really the beauty with CarPlay. For example, it's easy to toggle between the navigation and music. There's no going to/from the unit's Home screen to choose different apps. They're all available in CarPlay. The limitation though is that the app list only contains CarPlay supported stuff, but so far I haven't run out of stuff to do/explore.

Display
CarPlay has an auto dark mode based on time of day. I like the look of the dark mode better so I keep it turned on perpetually. You can also do the same by having "day mode" on all the time.

Other Apps
When connected to CarPlay, WiFi seems blocked. So, I can't navigate away from CarPlay and use other stuff without disconnecting my phone. Apple's assumption is that CarPlay is your default platform for interacting with your unit. Was not a deal breaker for me, and so far I haven't had a need to go outside CarPlay.
 

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Discussion Starter #44
For those running Apple CarPlay, here's what I've found based on my initial use over the last few days. Overall it's very positive. If you're an iPhone user, then you should see a huge improvement.

Voice Control
Clicking the voice dictation button on the steering wheel causes any audio to pause. Then, I say "Hey Siri..." and make my request. The request can be to call someone in my phone's address book, to navigate to a known contact, POI or address, to play a specific song, or hear music by artist or genre. I can also dictate text messages. Of course all the standard Siri voice response stuff works when asking "What's the 5-day forecast" or random stuff like "Who was the 23rd president." I was surprised all this worked, and worked so well.

Audio
Music accessibility is great via my Apple Music subscription. I don't know if this is required or not. Audio quality is excellent. I don't have any balance issues. I also don't detect any feedback reported by others. Seems like the audio quality is better than I remember previously with USB direct connect from the glove box. I have not found a way to use the steering wheel buttons to forward/back the tracks nor any play/pause option. Sure would be nice. It doesn't seem supported so I tap the screen for this.

Navigation
Navigation works great. Voice control lets me dictate locations. My calendar is integrated so the map will suggest routing to my next appointment. Eerily, it also knows my commons destinations based on my daily activity. So, when I get into the car in the morning it suggests routing to my gym even though it's not on the calendar. The CarPlay navigation app is designed for the car, and is not a direct port of the mobile app. It's big, bright and nicely done. There's also a new 3-D view showing building elevations. One limitation is that I haven't found a satellite view. Only standard map display. Maps also connects to my Apple Watch and gives me a little jolt when I need to make a turn.

Phone
Calls are easy to make via Siri or by choosing a contact from the address book that appears on the unit. NOTE: Incoming calls need to be accepted and disconnected via the phone app on the unit. Clicking the phone button on the steering wheel launches the default Bluetooth dialer on the unit outside of CarPlay. Would be great to figure out a way to map this button as well.

One issue I'm having with the phone is that callers report an echo of their voice. I don't hear any echo. This is well documented online. It doesn't happen when the phone is connected via Bluetooth so it's got something to do with CarPlay. If I discover the fix then I'll post here. Maybe somebody else has already solved this one...

Messaging
I can see/hear when a new message arrives. Incoming messages can be read by Siri. Siri prompts me for my reply which I dictate. Totally handsfree. Using voice control I can also send a new messaging saying something like "Hey Siri...send a text to Michael..." Siri then prompts me through the dictation, confirms the accuracy of the message, and then sends it.

Connection
I wired two USB ports into the cigarette lighter port. Super convenient and looks totally integrated. So far, I've kept my phone in the cup holder and connected with a small 3-4" lightning cable. There's probably a more elegant way to do this. I connect my phone when I start the car. The unit boots up, ZLink starts and automatically finds my phone, and CarPlay launches. I don't have to initiate anything on the unit. Note that only one of the two USB ports will connect to CarPlay this way though. My phone charges while connected to CarPlay. The other USB port remains available to charge something else.

Interoperability
The way the various apps integrate through a common command portal is really the beauty with CarPlay. For example, it's easy to toggle between the navigation and music. There's no going to/from the unit's Home screen to choose different apps. They're all available in CarPlay. The limitation though is that the app list only contains CarPlay supported stuff, but so far I haven't run out of stuff to do/explore.

Display
CarPlay has an auto dark mode based on time of day. I like the look of the dark mode better so I keep it turned on perpetually. You can also do the same by having "day mode" on all the time.

Other Apps
When connected to CarPlay, WiFi seems blocked. So, I can't navigate away from CarPlay and use other stuff without disconnecting my phone. Apple's assumption is that CarPlay is your default platform for interacting with your unit. Was not a deal breaker for me, and so far I haven't had a need to go outside CarPlay.
Michael,
Thank you for taking the time for this awesome write up, Excellent information I couldn't provide!!
 

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If you don’t want to go through the trouble of cutting and splicing the rear camera here is an alternative. Just drill a larger hole that the RCA plug can pass through from the outside. The mounting base will cover the hole leaving just enough room for the wire.

See also how the cable is routed to the trunk lid.

38629789-FE40-4DAD-9219-6651393A56F6.jpeg F8AF8705-EDB9-4EAB-B36D-7F92E695C61E.jpeg 32A47673-7EE6-4C03-B9DE-C6D54E4766E7.jpeg
 

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Here's my tip.

#1 DITCH the stock launcher app its terrible.

Its simple.

1) DL the app Car Launcher PRO

2) run the app

3) be blown away by the improved interface

4) press the home button, you'll get a dialog to bind the home button to the new or old launcher (choose the new one)
now on, pressing home will take you to the new launcher. It will also default to it on startup.

5) You may also get a dialog asking to turn ON notifications (and allow media and microphone access)

6) You can add your apps to the dash (press add, then name a folder - name doesn't matter)

7) You can rearrange them add more apps - whatever you want as per normal android home screen fashion

8) importantly all the old apps remain, I would NOT delete the ones with a green android icon (like CANBUS) etc

9) I would also DL a new music player I use "music player plus"

10) ENJOY!

Thank you for the tip!! As soon as I can get the trim issue figured out, and after/if they send me the correct one, this will be the first thing I do! Quick question, how long does it take to bootup when you start the car? It looked awfully long at the end of your video.

Do you guys use the OBDII? Should I get one?
 

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Thank you for the tip!! As soon as I can get the trim issue figured out, and after/if they send me the correct one, this will be the first thing I do! Quick question, how long does it take to bootup when you start the car? It looked awfully long at the end of your video.

Do you guys use the OBDII? Should I get one?
You're gonna love it.

The boot sequence is long. I'm working on a way to shorten it up

OBD2 is a cool gimmick, but pretty useless. If this were a 911 turbo, b the vacuum and boost would be handy, but honestly that would likely be in the CANBUS anyhow. The new launcher grabs speedometer data and display on the screen already. Pretty cool.
 

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not a Trick but here’s a TIP that may save some of you iPhone users 40 bucks..

This unit does not support Wireless CarPlay so don’t bother PayPal’ing Z-Link for an Activation Code. (I have already made that mistake for us. lol)

Youre welcome!
 

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not a Trick but here’s a TIP that may save some of you iPhone users 40 bucks..

This unit does not support Wireless CarPlay so don’t bother PayPal’ing Z-Link for an Activation Code. (I have already made that mistake for us. lol)

Youre welcome!
Thanks @Haiserati I was going to spend $40 this week for the wireless (non)-capability.
 

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Here are a few tips from my install.
1. When removing trim/panels pull the trim/panel as straight out as possible. If you use a trim tool on only one side it can bind up the panel retainer and/or clip and damage the dash/console.
2. You don't need to remove the bottom back seat cushions to take the top back seat cushions out. You'll need to take the back seat out to run your backup camera wire in coupes (not sure for a convertible). I also didn't take out the center back console. I ran my cable in the center console and just tucked the wire up under the edge of the console in the back seat area.
3. I didn't want to cut my camera cable and I wanted to run it inside the flexible rubber cable tube on the trunk lid. Get a stiff wire like a clothes hanger and push it through the rubber tube. Tape the RCA connector to the wire, lube it up with something slick and pull it (one connector at a time) back through the rubber tube. It will go through and the lube makes it much easier. This way you will have no exposed wires.
 

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Just finished my install in a 2014 GT convertible except for rear camera. The balance looks straight forward.
1. I avoided taking center console out. The bottom two bolts to the dash, under the HVAC controls, are accessible thru the two existing holes in the center console found when the rubber pad is removed. You’ll have to look up to see them. They came out with a straight driver connected to a 4mm Hex bit socket. A long straight Allen hex bit would work as well. A little angle but the bit caught. Careful not to drop the tools or bolts. A Magnet comes in handy.
I needed extra access to get them back in the hole at the right angle. Need to remove the two panels on either side of the driveshaft tunnel near dashboard. Pull the side to the back of the car straight away from the carpet. These are the pin connectors. Then slide the front side with the two angles brackets behind the panels down. This will allow you to get your finger under each dash bolt as you insert it with the tool.
2. The only trouble I had with the dash removal was the upper left side bolt. Same problem Robin had. Either the plastic instrument panel or the softer dash panel tab has to give. My dash base material broke. It allowed me the flexibility to bend it under the instrument panel. The top material Is fine and I believe i have enough other adjacent fasteners to keep the dash fixed.
3. I had some difficulty getting the lower half of the cowling under the steering wheel back on. it has three fasteners. One nut on a stud and two Allen head bolts. Two tricks. Use your finger Placing it on the forward section of the cowl over the hole for the stud on the extended piece of plastic. then place the cowling in position and use your finger to guide the cowl Over the stud. The plastic is thin and can break with too much force pushing over an off center stud.
But first- the steering position button switch box inside the cowl fits on top of a little ledge on the side of the steering column. You have to get the left side of the cowling high enough to fit the switch in or the right side won’t slide into place. Leave all fasteners a little loose until all three started.
19BD803C-C4D4-4396-8567-699527EBCB56.jpeg
4F81ADF3-004E-4F01-B08F-0C6D77F8EC05.jpeg

Now it’s time to learn the operating system and features.
 

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Nice job! Installing the rear camera in a convertible is super easy. It took me about 40 minutes to do the install. Leave the roof opened halfway and you'll see how easy it is to run the wires.
 

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FRONT CAMERA WARNING SCREEN FIX! Under Settings, bring up “User settings”, scroll down to “Brake detect” and set to OFF. That’s it, the front camera will work all the time regardless of parking brake or shifter position.
30B1E7FF-92C5-47CE-A4D6-CF4A363EEA95.jpeg 53A4F8A7-02AF-407F-9445-28EDECA519FB.jpeg 339AB7C0-490A-4FCC-81FD-2EC05A8DD8C6.jpeg
 
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Hello All,

Please post all your Tips and Tricks only to improve our experience and for all to learn from. DO NOT post problems or issues, post those in the main thread. This is to help everone with making our head units better and share functions and features we may not know about. You may post "fixes" to any known issues but discussions should be on the main thread.

Thanks so much guys, enjoy this awesome upgrade!!!!!
Hi Robin,

Here are a couple of pictures from the install of the:
AuCar 9" Android head unit w/ Apple Carplay

in my 2016 Maserati Granturismo. As Robin has noted the pictures taken on my phone do not do it justice.
I am a true CarPlay user and the Apple CarPlay environment is equal to or better than other platforms. The only confusion I have encountered relative to Google Maps app. I have found that personally it works better to get the maps app initiated on the phone with the address and directions preloaded and then initiate the AuCar app. This has helped me avoid dual directions which occurred when I waited until AuCar was already initiated and then loaded the maps app.

Here are some pictures of the install.
129691
129692
129693
 

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Discussion Starter #56
Hi Robin,

Here are a couple of pictures from the install of the:
AuCar 9" Android head unit w/ Apple Carplay

in my 2016 Maserati Granturismo. As Robin has noted the pictures taken on my phone do not do it justice.
I am a true CarPlay user and the Apple CarPlay environment is equal to or better than other platforms. The only confusion I have encountered relative to Google Maps app. I have found that personally it works better to get the maps app initiated on the phone with the address and directions preloaded and then initiate the AuCar app. This has helped me avoid dual directions which occurred when I waited until AuCar was already initiated and then loaded the maps app.

Here are some pictures of the install. View attachment 129691 View attachment 129692 View attachment 129693
Very Nice!!!! Great Job!!
 

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Hey Robin,

Quick questions:

How did you get the background to the textured leather? I tried everything. I want to mimic yours exactly. I also dont see the colors you have, the silver theme and lines. Mines blue. Lastly, how do you add the three little buttons on left side for Pandora etc? I did get the clock to the maserati logo, as I followed your write up on that. Thanks again!

Chris

129777
 

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Discussion Starter #58
Hey Robin,

Quick questions:

How did you get the background to the textured leather? I tried everything. I want to mimic yours exactly. I also dont see the colors you have, the silver theme and lines. Mines blue. Lastly, how do you add the three little buttons on left side for Pandora etc? I did get the clock to the maserati logo, as I followed your write up on that. Thanks again!

Chris

View attachment 129777
Hey Chris, just go to settings, home screen themes, swipe left for screen downloads, and download leather theme. On that theme when I played pandora it shows in the left corner, you can press and add more music options like Amazon music, YouTube etc.
 

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Hey Chris, just go to settings, home screen themes, swipe left for screen downloads, and download leather theme. On that theme when I played pandora it shows in the left corner, you can press and add more music options like Amazon music, YouTube etc.

Awesome going out and trying now! Thanks sir.
 

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Thanks Robin. Got it to work!

I did notice for the first time the background radio noise, static, that others have mentioned. Its probably the first time I have sat in the car with the motor off playing with the new unit.

It almost seems like a processor issue in the unit. It happens with Bluetooth, USB or any other source. Once the source starts, the hiss goes. I have read it is an issue with other China android stereos also. So it must be related to this chipset. I turned my gains down, but not much help. Curious to see if a fix is even available down the road. Definitely doesn't matter much when the engine is running though.
 
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