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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Fellow Maserati lovers
As there seems to be such a dislike for the info screen/audio system on our 02-06 spyders and coupes I am developing a custom solution. I am having the info screen unit laser scanned to derive a CAD file, then modifying the file to fit new components and then having a facility manufacture this new part. The upshot is that I will be able to offer these parts to other frustrated owners at a reasonable price.

I have decided to use the Kenwood CarPortal system as the basis for the mods. This allows you to choose the components you like. There are sat radio, nav by Garmin, iPod, bluetooth, rearview camera,etc. See the site for details:http://www.kenwoodusa.com/Car_Entertainment/CarPortal™/

You could also use a different system if you like. I have mocked up what the console would look like with the touch screen in place. (see pix) There is room on the sides for a custom switch, like for the FD DBW module, or a mic for bluetooth. You could also customize it with your name, badging, etc. The hazard light switch will remain on top. You will lose the display of selected temperature and fan speed but as it's directly below, I, for one, don't care. What you gain is a modern electronic brain in a package that feels factory. BTW, you will remove your factory info screen unit and keep it so you can always revert back if you're selling it to a purist.

I expect I will have my first prototype in about 3 to 4 weeks. I will post pics and descriptions of the results and costs at that time. I'm currently looking for sources for switches, badging, etc. I'm expecting the console piece to cost about $750 ea, more if you want customization. I'm expecting to pay about $1100 for my electronic components which will include Nav, iPod, and Sirius at first. The install is DIY or give it to your local installer.

Please give me feedback as this is now in the design phase.(scan and CAD) Wish me luck...
 

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You just need to couple this with a specifc speaker and subwoofer set up for the various models and then you provide what I am looking for. A step by step installation manual would finish off the job and everything shoudl come in a box.

2004 Maser Coupe
 

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You just need to couple this with a specifc speaker and subwoofer set up for the various models and then you provide what I am looking for. A step by step installation manual would finish off the job and everything shoudl come in a box.

2004 Maser Coupe

There are hundreds of choices for speakers, amps and subs. There is no way Doug can know what a persons likes and dislikes can be for sound (i.e. bright, bassy, loud, not loud, etc).

He is mearly giving an option that has not been there before. Many of us have been looking for something like this for years. There has been an Alpine solution, by tapping into the factory display, but not with touchscreen.

This will be far superior to anything available to date. The Kenwood system is inexpensive to start and can be expanded at anytime.

As far as step by step instructions, he is only providing a plate to replace the panel were the factory POS is. The Kenwood hardware will have instructions and is available on their website. I guess he could do a one page deal on how to remove the bezel.

my .02

-Dan
 

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I'm very interested in this design as I have been thinking of doing the same thing. Although the thread above mine is the ideal solution reality is not going to produce a turn key method all bundled up in a box. It would be very nice but I'm assuming a local video/audio center will have the ability to replace the current speakers while they install the kenwood screen. I'll be honest I've priced some things and I've come to the conculsion I would need to spend roughly 1,500 to make this happen, maybe another 500-750 in speakers. What are your thoughts?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Speakers et al

I hear you about the speakers but there are just too many options, with large price jumps between them. Some cars have the base audio package which I've read has lousy speakers. Mine has the Auditorium 200 upgrade which has decent Bose? speakers and a more powerful amp. I personally plan to upgrade with the Kenwood components first, then if I'm still unhappy w the sound, change out the speakers. This console component should give us a platform for a stylish and flexible audio upgrade path, and each person can tune that to their own preferences.
 

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hey guys, I think this is a good idea.... My only concern is the 4" screen being a bit too small. I have not used one yet as I always use the 7". I do have many friends of mine let me know that the 4" is a bit tough to use the touch due to the size of the screen. I might just have to order one to see for my self and try...

What are you going to make these plates out of?

sprocketmensch, if you need any help making these let me know, I have a full wood/metal/plastic fab shop set up and can make some pretty cool stuff.... We can also wood grain, carbon fiber these plates as well...

I look forward to seeing the end result...
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks Jeremy, I may take you up on your help with regards to custom finishing. I am looking at using a polycarbonate/ABS blend for the material. It is strong and durable, is usable as is or can be painted or finished to taste.

As for the size of the screen, I'd love to be able to fit a larger one but the KOS 702 is too large. The 4.3" screen is the same as a Garmin Nuvi wide screen unit which is in my wife's car, and is surprisingly usable. If you know of another manufacturer who makes a 5 or 6" touch screen that would work, give me a holler. Once I have the plate in CAD format, it's easy to modify the opening for a different screen or component. I could even supply these to you as blank plates and you could cut them out at your shop.
 

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Thanks Jeremy, I may take you up on your help with regards to custom finishing. I am looking at using a polycarbonate/ABS blend for the material. It is strong and durable, is usable as is or can be painted or finished to taste.

As for the size of the screen, I'd love to be able to fit a larger one but the KOS 702 is too large. The 4.3" screen is the same as a Garmin Nuvi wide screen unit which is in my wife's car, and is surprisingly usable. If you know of another manufacturer who makes a 5 or 6" touch screen that would work, give me a holler. Once I have the plate in CAD format, it's easy to modify the opening for a different screen or component. I could even supply these to you as blank plates and you could cut them out at your shop.
I make all our custom dash inserts from ABS which is plenty strong.. We even make our own ABS glue in house... I can easily make these from ABS for you guys... I can even probably fit the 7" Kenwood ;)

If anyone is willing to send there dash bezel with screen and I will see about fitting the 7" screen, custom made out a 1/2" piece of ABS plastic...

I can also dye the plastic any color...
 

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Looks Great - Installed Cost?

I think your images are perfect. The product is very appealing.

What would happen to the current trip computer and climate control screens?

If your cost is $1100, what is the final cost to install?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Unless I measured wrong, the plate is about 4.875" at it's tallest point and the KOS 702 is 4.75". Below is my bad mockup of what it might look like, hence my decision to go w the L432.
If you'd like to give me a price to do these and save me some of this trouble, fine. Personally, I like my process, because after the item's been digitized, it can be built repeatedly at an automated plant with very tight tolerances (.0015") out of a variety of materials, so if someone wants one 2 months from now, all I have to do is put in the order and the plant can spit it out, albeit for a price.
This is not my business and I'm only looking to cover my costs but it seems like something many of us have been begging for.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I think your images are perfect. The product is very appealing.

What would happen to the current trip computer and climate control screens?

If your cost is $1100, what is the final cost to install?
The climate info would be gone although it does just show what's on the dials directly below. The trip computer would be gone. I don't know how much info the Kenwood/Garmin navi will show you vis a vis trip info. Certainly not mpg. It's clearly a trade off.

As for total pricing, I'm guessing for me it would be the plate, $750 + $1100 in electronics + labor. I don't know how many hours this would take a good installer? Jeremy, any thoughts? It would also depend how many components you are adding as this system is very expandable. I'm only putting in iPod, Nav and Sirius to start.
 

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this is a very interesting piece I am looking forward to seeing the completed product were are you planning on putting the kenwood brain? as it is a bit large. Also have you considered using a screen with no frame and a touch overlay? it would afford the larger size but without the added area around it for the casing. Keep us updated on this as I am VERY interested in how this comes together.

Lastly does anyone know if the KDC-C669 can interface with the V500 if you are using ipod, sat radio, nav, and BT?

If you are looking for a touchscreen with no bezel (so you could fit a 7" unit) look at Accelevision's raw panels get a 7" unit then buy a touch screen overlay for an Asus EEEPC as they are 7" screens as well. that would give you a very nice factory look and feel instead of the kenwood logo and plastic bezel
 

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Unless I measured wrong, the plate is about 4.875" at it's tallest point and the KOS 702 is 4.75". Below is my bad mockup of what it might look like, hence my decision to go w the L432.
I just ordered the KOS-432 the 4".

I have the 7" in my F350 and I think that it is perfect for that. In the Spyder I'm sitting much closer and the touchscreen is easily with in reach. I use a Nuvi for travel which is about the same size and I think it will be fine.

Of course, I have small fingers. Someone with large hands may need/want the 7".
 

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Exactly! The 4" might be a bit small for a guy like me with big fingers...
How do you text? I use a Blackberry and the buttons are small for me!

lol

-Dan
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Update

Just to keep everyone posted. I removed the display screen console. After looking through ALL the available literature including the full Mas service manual and schematics and finding virtually no documentation I got it out without damage. Here is what I've found: there is no room behind the screen unit to mount any standard single or double DIN unit. A touch screen of some sort is required. I am looking at a few options now for integrating the largest screen possible which may in fact be the Kenwood 702. I expect to have a solution in hand shortly and will keep you all informed. Have discussed overlaying a touch screen on the factory unit but am disinclined as the new unit would have lots of non-functional buttons and would only really add the trip info, some of which is redundant on the Garmin nav screen, and read out of temperature and fan speed which is right on the switches below.

I'm excited and the project moves forward.
Doug
 

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I'm with you guys

Hi Guys, just seen this post i too have looking a swapping everything out for months. Unfortunatly had to replace the clutch and other bits should have the back at the weekend.

have done a couple of mock ups, how do you insert pictures on here,

Also have you guys looked at speaker replacements yet ?
 
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