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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

New owner here. I just picked up a 2003 with the BMW ULF bluetooth. The ULF successfully paired with my phone and appears to be working as it should. I'd now like to add a DICE media bridge to add A2DP and iPod connectivity. Will there be any conflict in letting the BMW ULF handle the bluetooth phone portion and the DICE handle the A2DP. I like the idea of retaining the BMW ULF for the phone so that it will continue to work, regardless of whether I'm in the CD Changer mode.

Thanks,
Roger
 

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Not been a big fan of the Dice products or support. Note this was with the Dice Silverline Pro, but I was NOT happy with DICE support. My $30 iHome clock radio could control the iPod flawlessly, however the DICE could not?? Sent unit back for a firmware upgrade, still did not work correctly.

If you just want A2DP, suggest adding OEM Aux input - http://www.amazon.com/BMW-Genuine-Auxiliary-Navigation-Series/dp/B000P9WCMK/ref=pd_sbs_auto_5

And then add this - Amazon.com: Belkin Bluetooth Car Hands-Free Kit for Apple iPod, Apple iPhone, BlackBerry,and Android Smartphones, US Version: MP3 Players & Accessories

You can wire this in and hide everything behind the dash and only have the disc located for access.

This also support hands free speaker phone with audio through the sound system, pausing music and skipping ahead. Not a big fan of most Belkin items, but this is a pretty slick item.

You may have conflicts with the Bluetooth speaker phone and A2DP, I have not tried to see how this works yet with 2 Bluetooth devices.
I actually have this in my M5 for A2DP.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply. I like the idea of saving $200, and I also like the idea of just using my phones interface, as I'm sure it's much better than the DICE. Quick question though, how does the BMW Genuine Auxiliary input wire into the MK IV system.

Looks like we have very similar cars, the one I just picked up is also a Sterling.
 

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The Aux cable is REALLY easy, you pull the Nav head unit out, 3 screws as I recall, plug it in the back of the head unit, then it allows the Aux function to show up, you then have a 1/8" stereo phone input/female.

You could start just with the Aux unit and use a jumper between your phone, then add the Belkin adapter. The Belkin has a 1/8" male plug that you can then must plug into the Aux input.

In the long run you would want to hide all the Belkin stuff except for the small hockey puck.

The good news is the Belkin just dropped in price by almost $15 recently, not sure it will stay there so move quick.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Awesome! I guess the next question is how to power the belkin bluetooth reciever without tying up the 12V cigarette lighter. I'm assuming there is a switched circuit that I can tap into which would power the unit on whenever the car is started. I'm thinking of hiding everything in the glove box. Any idea on what wires to tap to power the belkin?

Thanks again, this is a great alternative to the CD Changer replacement options.
 

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Do you know if there is there a similar solution for a car built on 10/01?
Assume you have widescreen NAV?

I am not 100% sure what the differences may be with the earlier cars. Sometimes it may be firmware?

You should either search around, or pull your head unit and check for the connector in the rear. If the connector is there, you could roll the dice and order a cable and hope it works, if not return it?

You might check BimmerNav or search around on the net to see what info you can find.

If I run across anything I will update.
 

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Just to confirm what I'm reading: If I get both of these parts I'll be able to connect my phone via Bluetooth as well as have an AUX in to connect my Ipod/Phone to play music?
 

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Assuming you have no issue with getting the OEM BMW Aux cable to work with your head unit, you will be able to do the following:

1. Connect any audio source directly to the Aux input via 1/8" stereo phone plug and play the audio through the cars sound system, this is 1/2 of the set up. I just wanted to make it clear what the Aux input allows by itself.

2. Connect the Belkin Bluetooth device to your Aux input and you will be able to do the following:

a. Stream music via A2DP (Bluetooth connection, no wires) to your cars sounds system. This can be an Apple device that supports Bluetooth A2DP (ipod Touch, iPhone, iPad) , Droid device or almost any device that supports A2DP directly or using an add on A2DP transmitter. This includes music stored directly on your phone/music device and/or Pandora, Sirius/XM or any other online music content from a smart phone or tablet.

b. Pause music and/or skip forward a song at a time using the Belkin Microphone/Control Disc.

c. Receive phone calls via Bluetooth and have a hands free speaker phone that route phone audio through the cars sound system. Single touch of the Belkin Microphone/Control Disc will pick up the call.

d. Make phone calls via Bluetooth and you can even bring up Voice control from the Belkin Microphone/Control Disc. Note this can bring up Siri on newer iPhones or the Droid Voice Commands. There are issues with audio quality for both Siri and Droid Voice Commands as they are broadband based and have both a delay and at times poor voice recognition. I have found a nice App for my Droid that samples your voice like the OEM Bluetooth Voice Dialing in BMW and other cars. This is far more accurate and much faster as it does a voice fingerprint match locally on your phone.

Now a few small caveats.

1. If you are streaming A2DP and your phone gets some sort of notification, text, email or other, you will get a drop in the audio. This is not a problem with the Belkin device, this is the way most phones notify you that some sort of message or notification has arrived. This may be a configurable setting on some devices that you can turn off or modify??

2. Unlike a fully integrated Bluetooth system, you will not get your cars sound system to mute and ring through the speakers. A small price to pay in my opinion for the cost of this device. Some phones will not even pass the ringer through the A2DP, but will ring from the phone itself. This can actually be a good thing because if you are listening to another audio source or non at all and you have an incoming phone call, the phone ringer will hopefully alert you. Again this may be configurable on the specific device.

3. In order to use the Bluetooth phone you will need to either be using the Aux input or switch to the Aux input.

4. Every time you get back into the car you will need to push the Belkin Microphone/Control to pair the device, many times this will start music playing as well. So there is no auto Bluetooth connection. I can say this device can pair with multiple devices, not sure how many devices can be stored in memory??

5. If you are using a smart phone with talking navigation, you can be listening to music via your smart phone and the Nav voice will reduce the music level and speak over your car sound system. Similar to any integrated NAV system, but this is an option of the phone and not anything special about the A2DP streaming or Belkin device, just something you may not have thought of.

6. There may be a few other issues that if I remember them, I will update this post with.

Again, this is not a perfect solution and has some pitfalls, but for the price and what it can actually do, I believe it is hands down a device to consider and to at least try out. I would prefer to wire the device to a switched power, but make sure your switched power is not just the ignition, but to the accessory power so if you turn of the car but do not exit you can continue to use the speaker phone and/or stream music for 16 minutes until sleep mode.

Again, I am not normally a big Belkin fan, but this is one pretty slick little device that gets the job done. I believe Belkin has a cousin to this that actually has an integrated FM transmitter, but I will take the the one with the 1/8" audio connection any day of the week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Great breakdown. Thanks.

One minor question. The amazon ad states that the part is not for cars equipped with Nav, is there a different cable, or is that just a misprint in the ad.

Thanks!
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I think this is the correct part for cars with Nav. Unfortunately it doesn't ship prime. Ohh well, I placed the order.

Looks like I'll install this and just use the cigarette lighter to power it, since it seems like you need to access the hockey puck every time you want to pair it.

I'd be interested in photos of where people have mounted the puck.
 

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I think you are correct about the Amazon link I posted. These the descriptions are all over the place and it is hard to get the proper item.

I believe??? the proper BMW Aux cable Part Number for use with NAV is 82110149391??

Do your own research to make sure.

I also have read that on the earlier cars you likely have to change out the radio module to a newer unit or you may have to have a specific firmware?? Suggest if you have an earlier car to search the net for more info on this model year break point.

I also see that the link you provided does show up as Prime??

I will correct my other post with the caveat that some of the descriptions may be off on Amazon, but they are far cheaper than most other suppliers. BimmerNav want $75 for the cable!
 

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Do you know if there is there a similar solution for a car built on 10/01?
Note that I corrected the Amazon link as the first one posted did not appear to support NAV cars.

I believe the OEM Aux cable PN with NAV is 82110149391???? You should really confirm for sure before you order.

Even Amazon's descriptions can be off, so buyer beware. But Amazon has a good return policy.

As for earlier cars, you may have to change your radio module out with a newer version??? Suggest you check and search around on this forum and others. I never had to do the hard core research as my car is a later '03 model. But I did end up installing OEM Sirius & ULF Bluetooth.

I had a Dice Silverline Pro and was not really happy as the thing just did not really work as advertised and I had situations where my $30 iHome clock radio could fully control the iPod with the correct playlists, but put the same iPod in the car and it would skip playlist and have other issues.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
I installed the BMW auxiliary adapter and the belkin Bluetooth adapter. I'm pretty happy with the install, but think I will refine some more. I put the aux adapter on the left side of the glove box, and think I will power the belkin unit from the flashlight socket in the glove box. I'm still trying to nail down where I want to put the belkin microphone.
 

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The Belkin mic/controller needs to be reachable so you can pause, skip, answer or dial the phone.

Not sure if you would mount it near the UGO (Garage Door Opener)/sunroom control panel?? or possibly on the console somewhere?

Not sure how long the mic/controller cord is as I have not unraveled mine yet.

If you have a Driod phone, suggest you check into the Cyberon Voice Speed Dial, make sure you record your voice using the Belkin mic other wise it may not recognize your voice. Then if you use just the phones mic I found that the Cyberon app worked fine, but not recording using the phone.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
In response to why not go dice, here are my thoughts. I'll preface this with I haven't used the dice, but am now using the above aux in/Belkin system in conjunction with the BMW ULF.

1. The dice install also requires a DSP adapter cable. By the time you add that you are pushing over $200 vs. the $70 I spent on mine. Rather than waiting for an eBay auction, I purchased from Amazon and had the parts at my door in 2 days. Cheaper and faster.
2. I believe the dice install requires the disabling of the CD changer, the above install does not. I still have full use of my CD changer. Will I use the CD changer? Probably not a lot, but I like knowing that I can.
3. By using the BMW ULF, I have use of my phone for calls regardless of what input I'm on, I believe the dice requires you to be on the proper input.
4. While the dice does allow you to control your music via the nav screen, all accounts make this sound clunky and non intuitive. I think apple and google have spent far more time refining their interfaces, so I prefer to navigate my music on the device.

I don't think the aux input/Belkin works for everyone, but I am very satisfied with it. If you have a car which you can easily add the aux input to (2002+), this is a perfectly acceptable solution.
 

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Agree with the above, the Belkin may not be the ultimate solution, but it does work pretty well and as advertised. I find no matter what set up I have in a car, I still like to have an Aux input available for something like the Belkin, or I set up a switch so I can flip between the Belkin and a 1/8" jack/cable so anyone who hops in the car with a music player of some sort can "jack in" and start playing music without the need to fool around with BT connection even if the player supports bluetooth.

So I see the Aux as a must have either way.

If you give up on the Belkin for something else, fine, toss it on Ebay/Craigslist/Forum FS section or take it in the house and use a cheap 12 Volt power adapter and some adapter cables and connect it to your home stereo system, toss it in your junk drawer for the beach trip in your friends car that has an Aux input of the next application that rolls in the driveway!
 
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