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  #1  
Old 07-26-2018, 08:38 AM
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Question X5 Head Unit Swap

Hi Folks,

I have just bought an X5 3.0D. My model has the split stereo where the radio and CD player are separated. I want a reversing camera and I'm going to replace the split stereo with either

1. A BMW head unit sourced from a breakers yard or
2. An aftermarket unit with larger screen.

I've seen ads for Eonon, Chinese made units with various names, and I have also seen ads for a brand called Seicane that do what looks like a nice touch screen unit.

When I called a breakers yard they told me I needed the Head Unit, Loom cable, and a TV Module that is fitted in the boot, and they were looking silly money for it, just nuts. I donít want to under or overbuy the parts needed, so my questions are this

1. Should I use a salvaged BMW head unit?

I am asking because I think technology has moved on and it might be a waste to put the older BMW headset in, even if it is an original BMW unit.

2. Is upgrading the existing (split) stereo to a salvaged BMW unit (with screen) doable?
And if the upgrade is possible,

3. What parts do I need from the salvaged BMW? Loom? Head unit? And hardware from the boot?

4. If getting a non BMW headset is the best way to go then could you recommend a brand?

Iím not overly technical so I can take panels off, unplug electronics and follow instructions but I might encounter some headwind if Iíve to rewire the space shuttle to swap the units over.

I am very grateful in advance for your help and advice.

Bennylava
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  #2  
Old 07-26-2018, 09:06 AM
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I just finished my install of a android unit with GPS satellite tv and WiFi. I am still waiting for the bus adapter (?) so I can access the rest of the settings/steering controls and over here that's at least 3 weeks.

That being said I recommend you go with a whole new setup and be prepared for dealing with the camera for a looong while. It's like masturbating with a cheese grater, slightly amusing but mostly painful... :

Good luck!

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  #3  
Old 07-26-2018, 01:05 PM
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I think an Android unit with navigation is the way to go, there's one for every budget..

I got a regular double din android system.
You need to also get get the harness, antena, and faceplate for your car..
Something like this http://a.co/h58vyNb

If you want steering wheel controls to work, you need an adapter too. I tried two but the one that worked for me was this.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/BMW-Multi-1...53.m2749.l2649

Finally, you will have to use a hand saw to cut some plastic inside the dashboard, for the new unit to fit, but if you are handy, there's not much to it.
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Old 07-26-2018, 03:19 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EODguy View Post
I just finished my install of a android unit with GPS satellite tv and WiFi. I am still waiting for the bus adapter (?) so I can access the rest of the settings/steering controls and over here that's at least 3 weeks.

That being said I recommend you go with a whole new setup and be prepared for dealing with the camera for a looong while. It's like masturbating with a cheese grater, slightly amusing but mostly painful... :

Good luck!

Sent from my SM-A730F using Tapatalk

Need to do this myself. Where did you buy from/which model did you go with?

So you're saying the backup camera install is a PITA?
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Old 07-26-2018, 05:38 PM
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Hi Bennylava2,

Welcome!

OK, first thing, please add you car's details (year, trim etc.) to your signature. This makes it easier for us to help you, as the are some big variations over the entire model run of the E53.

Next, grab a coffee (or something stronger), sit down and have a read of this: -

BMW X5 Aftermarket Radio Installation | Crowz Nest

You won't have many questions after reading this (and the thread here on Xoutpost that is referenced).

For my money, I'd put in the Seicane unit that Crowz used - along with the iBus items.
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Old 07-26-2018, 05:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bennylava2 View Post
... I have just bought an X5 3.0D. My model has the split stereo where the radio and CD player are separated. I want a reversing camera and I'm going to replace the split stereo with either ...
Sounds like your 3.0d is the same as mine, with no factory Nav and either the Professional or Business CD player up front (and mine also has the 6-CD changer in the boot/trunk).

Just so you know, what you are calling the "radio" is not a radio - it is just a display panel, called the MID (Multi-functional Information Display). It has a dial that can control volume (along with the steering wheel controls) and buttons and display for radio functions but the actual radio itself is inside the CD player, above the MID. The CD Player also contains the amplifier, so all the speaker wiring is connected to the back of the CD player in the dash.

This makes the upgrade to the Seicane unit MUCH simpler in our cars than is shown in the write up I've shown above. BMW X5 E53 cars that have the factory Nav system have the radio and amplifier modules in the boot/trunk, requiring a long loom to be run from the front of the car to the back. We don't need this, as the connections to all the speakers are already in our dash, not in the boot/trunk. The Seicane unit will plug directly into the same plug that is in the back of your CD Player.

The two hardest tasks in your install will be a little trimming of the plastic in the dash (or removal of the plastic frame) and running the cable for the reversing camera.

Not really a big deal at all
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  #7  
Old 07-28-2018, 12:36 AM
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Ok, firstly thank you, thank you and thank you again. I've taken on board you comments on the profile info and I am updating it.

I ordered the Seicane unit and I am going to try to fit it myself. I have pulled the dash apart, well taken out the existing stereo and I think the Secicane unit comes with everything needed as it is specific for the BMW X5.
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  #8  
Old 07-30-2018, 02:22 AM
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Wpoll, thanks for that heads up. The differences int the looms and where the equipment is located was causing me some concern. It the unit works and works when I hook up the rear view camera I'll be happy. I understand there is a loom for a TV unit, but that's not needed.

Very very grateful to all who answered. Thanks
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Old 01-09-2022, 04:40 PM
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so I know this is an old post but ... having just purchased a "new" E53 X5 (2006, 4.4 w/ all options) - I'm really interested in the head unit you installed. I like the idea of the physical knobs w/ the Seicane (or Eonon or ...) units but I'd rather have additional screen realestate.

Is this a 9" screen or an 11" screen or ...? What specific unit did you purchase and 3+ years later - how's it holding up (my other concern with the no-name Chinese stuff)?

Thanks much!

Quote:
Originally Posted by EODguy View Post
I just finished my install of a android unit with GPS satellite tv and WiFi. I am still waiting for the bus adapter (?) so I can access the rest of the settings/steering controls and over here that's at least 3 weeks.

That being said I recommend you go with a whole new setup and be prepared for dealing with the camera for a looong while. It's like masturbating with a cheese grater, slightly amusing but mostly painful... :

Good luck!

Sent from my SM-A730F using Tapatalk
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  #10  
Old 01-10-2022, 11:56 AM
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I put in an Avin Avant 4 with the small screen. Same size as the original NAV. I like how it looks stock. Only someone that knows what they're looking at will know the difference.
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