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Subaru Legacy/Outback 2005+

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Comments

  • locke2clocke2c Posts: 5,038
    I second the '06 suggestion, but I would like to comment that reasonably priced aftermarket wheels are not a problem... say $1000 or less for a set.

    If you pay more than that, you should talk to your agent to see if you need an additional rider, and of course keep your receipts.

    ~c
  • bjubju Posts: 8
    I'm still on the fence about trading out of my allroad into a new OB, and believe it or not, one of my major hangups is the stereo. I've got an after-market XM Commander in my Audi which connects to the HU directly thru RCA jacks. It also has a cassette player which allows me to run my iPod using a cassette adapter. In the OB, it looks like the stock stereo has no direct-in for MP3, no line-in in the back, and no cassette player. Does that really mean being stuck with CDs and FM radio?? I've searched a couple other forums here to see what others have done, but any topics on XM are generally related to older OB models. Are there any real-world solutions out there yet fpr the 05/06?
  • sweet_subiesweet_subie Posts: 1,394
    This is a huge issue. my wife hates my 05 XT for this reason.
    What about IPOD with FM modulator ?
  • jvhaasjvhaas Posts: 5
    We haven't tried using our XM in our new OB, but we do just fine in our Pathfinder using the FM modulator. I'd give it a try...and of course I will report how the modulator works in the OB. (05 2.5i LTD, 5 days "old")
  • bjubju Posts: 8
    Not a fan of the FM modulator, but it may be the only option. I tried it (the Belkin one I think) and had no luck. I live in the SF Bay Area and finding a vacant station was difficult. In fact, I never did find one, so use the cassette adapter for the iPod. Between the two, getting XM is the priority, although the wife prefers the iPod on road trips. It'll be my car though, and she'll rarely drive it.
  • sweet_subiesweet_subie Posts: 1,394
    belkin doesn't make good stuff other than cables. i would try other brands
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Belkin makes an FM *transmitter*, and those can give poor quality. An FM *modulator* wires inline with the antenna cable and gives a consistently stronger signal. The quality is still only as good as FM, but it's generally way better than a transmitter. I am using a modulator for my iPod right now, and it works OK. However, a fellow over on another forum is perfecting a direct line-in solution that we have all been working on for a year. I think he'll be selling the parts within the next few weeks. It will require connecting an adapter board into the guts of the radio, but overall, it's a simple and reliable solution. It will give a clean line-in going directly to the amplifier. It basically toggles the CD input between the CD changer and an aux-in of your choice.

    Note that we have been working this for the GT/XT/Ltd models that have the 6-CD changer. It may or may not work on the base models with single CD.

    Craig
  • bjubju Posts: 8
    Good info, thanks. I'd be getting the LTD model, so should work for me. I'll keep my eyes/ears open for news on the parts. I also was not aware of the transmitter vs. modulator difference. Very important difference I see. Modulator would be acceptable, but direct line-in is ideal.

    Thanks again.
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    I personally think the sound from a cassette adapter is better than an FM transmitter or modulator so I think it's not too bad a choice -- other than it looking kludgy.

    I also live in the SF Bay Area and have found 92.7 to work generally well with my Belkin transmitter. I also did a simple hack of soldering on a segment of wire to the antenna lead to extend it's range.

    Sometime this week I'm going to be installing an FM Modulator, however, for more consistent performance.

    Ken
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Craig,

    I just was reading through the other forum and it sounded like a solution was ready, just without the CD mute function.

    Please let us know how the install goes when you do get it. It sounded like some through-hole soldering was required and I'd love to hear how difficult you thought the modification would be.

    Ken
  • bjubju Posts: 8
    Ken- I didn't think a cassette adapter was an option though, as the stock stereo doesn't appear to come with a player (like so many new cars these days)?
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    My bad -- I just realized you were referencing a 06 OB. Yes, cassettes have become a thing of the past.

    Ken
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Saw two 06 models today. As Bob mentoned a while back, thy have 17" wheels/tires now.

    Legacy 2.5i wagon -- had the same 17" wheels as the 05 GT, and Yokohama Advan tires!

    Outback 2.5i wagon -- had 17" wheels that were a new style (maybe 8-10 spokes) but still had the Potenza RE-92A tires.

    Craig
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Ken,

    I am hoping Mike can get the boards pre-fabbed (with connectors already soldered on). The pitch of the connectors is very fine (like 0.5 mm zig-zag), and I would not look forward to soldering that!

    Craig
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Craig,

    So, with the connectors already soldered on, the board simply plugs onto the back of the HU?

    It's too bad I no longer work with the semiconductor test group at work. I knew many EE and techs for whom something like this would have been a walk in the park.

    Ken
  • Where did you guy get the info on hacking into the HU to add the Ipod?

    Lee
  • sweet_subiesweet_subie Posts: 1,394
    I thought FM modulator works wirelessly ? isn;t this true ? My DVD video in my MPV has built in FM modulator & it works just fine.

    Look at our pathetic life, we can;t connect this to a 30k car ? Subaru failed miserably on this.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yokohama Advan tires?!

    You mean OE tires that don't suck on a Subaru?

    I'm shocked.

    -juice
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    An FM transmitter is wireless and has to compete with other radio signals as it broadcasts to your antenna. An FM modulator is wired intoe the antenna line downstream of the antenna (and upstream of the radio), and can basically switch the antenna off so the modulator signal is piping directly into the radio receiver with no competition.

    Craig
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    What ever happened to the potential face plate that would allow standard DIN or double-DIN stereo units to fit in the dash? Was that a pipe dream due to the HVAC controls?

    Seems like there is a market for an adaptor to open up options.

    -juice
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Ken,

    The board will have two ribbon cable connectors, a short extra ribbon cable, a pigtail with RCA leads, and various power/relay wires.

    The ribbon cable going from the CD changer to the amplifier (inside the radio) would be disconnected and routed to the board. The extra ribbon cable would then go from the board to the amp. Relays on the board will switch between the CD changer input (on the incoming ribbon) and the RCA pigtails, then direct the output to the amp.

    You'd need to pull the radio out and remove the back panel of the radio (all easy). Then reach in and fiddle with the ribbon cables (also fairly easy, even more so if you have small hands!). Finally, either zip tie or tape the accesory board inside the radio (plenty of room) and route all external the cables/wires out through a hole in the back (which is currently covered with a plastic plug).

    Craig
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    There's another website specific to the "LegacyGT". Hope that helps -- if I get any more specific than that, Edmunds will delete the post.

    Craig
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    I think it's an option for 2.5i models, but it will never work on the Ltd and up models, as the radio and HVAC controls share a common circuit board. HVAC wiring actually plugs into the back of the radio!! There's really no good way to separate them. Best option is to add an aftermarket radio elsewhere and leave the stock system alone.

    Craig
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    What if we did go with a 2.5i, though, does someone make a face plate?

    -juice
  • chumchum Posts: 11
    Craig - Is it in bad taste to ask for the link to the other board? If so, can you send it to my email?

    EDIT: NM.. Missed your last post. Found the site :)

    I'd really be interested in finding a way to plug my 'pod into my 05 Outback XT. Thanks,

    Chad
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    There is a JDM Subaru faceplate that "should" work on 2.5i models. It will require moving the hazard button over to the other side (and associated re-wiring), but I think that's the worst of it. Nobody has tried it yet though!

    Craig
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Someone do it, take one for the team! LOL

    -juice
  • occkingoccking Posts: 346
    I also have the XM Commander in my outback. The unit with the controls fits very nicely flat on the part just in fromt of the cup holders. It works fine through the FM modulator. The unit "died" and while I was getting it replaced bought a XM Roady unit on sale for only $50 (cause I knew it would take a few weeks to get the XM fixed) That also worked fine with FM Modulator, in fact even more FM settings on that than the Commander. My only problem is antenna is on inside of dash & gets reception maybe 90% of the time. I will live with it to avoid having antenna outside on roof. I am not a "connosoeur" (don't ask me how to spell that word) when it comes to sound quality on a radio so perhaps the quality is not as good as a factory installed unit (which I have had previously) or one "direct wired" but fine for my purposes.
  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    If you're electrical/electronical inclined, you could rig an auxillary input for the XM or iPod.
    I believe the auxillary circuitry is already there in the unit's board [remember coming across a thread of such over at nabisco].

    -Dave
  • twrxtwrx Posts: 647
    I tried an FM transmitter with my iPod in my 2.5i. (Yes it was a Belkin). Lousy signal, static and drifting. I think part of the problem is the in glass antenna at the back of the car.

    Apple just added Nissan, Mazda and Diahatsu in Japan to the list of cars with dedicated iPod connectors. Here in the US I know of BMW, Mini, Volvo, Scion, Jaguar and Benz. Get with it Subaru!
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