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Toyota Camry Hybrid Audio & Entertainment Questions

PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 9,102
Discuss audio/entertainment question for the Toyota Camry Hybrid here.

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  • heathinsdheathinsd Posts: 24
    Does anyone know if there is a way to enable all of the functions of the DVD Navigation, Phone, and CD Player while driving? I know they reduce functionality while driving due to safety, that totally makes sense. However I always have people in the car with me and it makes it difficult for them to use the system when we're moving.

    For example, you have to use speed dial for the phone or do "dial by voice" which takes forever. You can't view folder/file views on MP3 CDs. You can't update the phone book or mess with any of the Setup or Maintenance screens either.

    Thanks for any help! :)
  • sallyspalsallyspal Posts: 31
    I just got my Silver TCH yesterday and I've volunteered for every possible errand this weekend just to spend time behind the wheel. I love this car! I also love listening to my music when I drive. Do any of you smart people out there know the hardware that I'll need to charge and play my IPOD while I am driving? I've looked at a bewildering array of chargers, docks, plugs and jacks and would appreciate your recommendations re: equipment and brands.
  • m0t0rm0uthm0t0rm0uth Posts: 10
    All you need is a simple cable that plugs into the small hole on top of the Ipod where your headset would normally plug in and inside the storage bin below the HVAC controls you will find a small plug in called AUX. Plug that baby in and play your Ipod. You can control the volume with the radio but thats it. If you want to change a song you must do it with the Ipod.

    Get a short cable and your good to go.
  • orgalorgal Posts: 27
    I bought one today at Radio Shack for $4.95... worked like a charm! :)
  • sallyspalsallyspal Posts: 31
    Thanks m0t0rm0uth! I'll rummage around some cabinets, I'm sure I've got one of those small cables around the house.
  • hueristixhueristix Posts: 30
    I got the scoop on sirius people- makes a lot more sense now. Bummer.

    Basically they are having bugs and hope to have it out for October. That is why some dealers have them and some don't. Some have been installed, but you can't find them on Toyota parts sites.

    The cost would be $373 + about $250 labor (same as XM)

    That is bank. I guess being "satellite ready" only refers to the fact that it jives with the nav screen etc. So you are "ready" to add the antenna and tuner which costs just about 10x the amount of a plug and play kit.

    It is remarkable with my resistall treatment, extended warranty, prepaid maintenance deal, tint job, and possible sirius let's say I am closer to $40k than $30k...

    but the maintenance up to 45,ooo is paid for,
    the warranty covers me for 7 yrs/100,000,
    and the paint is even covered for chips after their bizarre teflon-like coating.
  • anniemfuseanniemfuse Posts: 66
    Thanks for posting about SIRIUS. I took delivery of my Desert Sand (loaded with nav) less than 12 hours ago and it will be hard to be without SIRIUS until I get it installed.

    I have the SIRIUS S50 in my current - oops, former - car and LOVE both SIRIUS satellite radio and the S50 unit. I will need to decide whether to get that transfered to the TCH or buy the new unit developed for the 2007 Camry by Factory Interactive. Factory Interactive makes satellite radio receiver/antenna install kits for the Prius, Hylander and Lexus. They make both XM and SIRIUS units. Their units integrate fully with the console and steering wheel controls so they are essentially OEM. They are now just waiting for some lucky 2007 Camry owner who lives near New Jersey to come in to their factory and provide their car so they can videotape the installation process. They provide installation videos with their install kits. Maybe there are other third party OEM-like options available now that integrate with the existing controls (anyone know?).

    As longs as I have a directly-wired system that integrates well and has decent display options, I'll be happy. (No wired or wireless FM modulation for me.)

    The sound system is GREAT!
  • m0t0rm0uthm0t0rm0uth Posts: 10
    Where do they mount the doohickey that actually receives the satellite signal. Not the box that decodes the signal but the actual sensor that picks it up. Many new cars have a small cool looking shark fin thing on the roof. Is the add on Satellite pickup something nice like this or some trailer park drink coaster looking thing just stuck in the back window or something.

    My dealer is basically clueleess and originally told me the Radio gets XM or Sat signals as it came from the factory...............of course he was wrong about that and most other things he BS'd about.
  • anniemfuseanniemfuse Posts: 66
    Where do they mount the doohickey that actually receives the satellite signal.

    The "doohickey" is the antenna. A satellite radio install kit includes a (1) sat radio receiver, (2) cables/wires for power, audio, and antenna, (3) an antenna, and in some cases (4) a display unit called a PNP [plug-n-play] unit with its own display screen.

    If your brand of receiver integrates with the existing car stereo display screen or the car's navigation screen you don't need (4). The Toyota OEM sat radios (not out yet) integrate with existing console displays. Some third party units do also.

    Your existing car radio must be "sat ready". The Camry JBL units are "sat ready" but don't have the sat receiver or antenna. "Sat ready" means that the radio has unused ports for audio input connectors and the ability to have the radio controls operate the auxiliary audio input device.

    Antenna location depends on (1) brand of sat receiver and (2) whether you get XM or SIRIUS in some cases. Shark fin antennas with no visible tiny wire going to the rear window gasket are usually factory installed since the roof is penetrated. But you can also buy a shark fin antenna and swap it with your existing antenna (make sure to match with your XM or SIRIUS receiver). Then you would have a small wire going to rear window gasket.

    I have heard but not confirmed that the 2007 Camry factory sat radio antennas are installed inside the car: on upper middle windshield for SIRIUS and rear deck for XM. Usually outside on a flat metal surface (roof or rear trunk lid) gives better reception. After-market metallized window tint films may affect reception.

    Yeah, I talked to a dealer who kept talking about "that Cyrus radio thing".
  • bmgoodmanbmgoodman Posts: 102
    After months of waiting, I finally got my (base model) TCH yesterday! I have to say, it was worth the wait! My initial impressions are excellent, though I have only been able to put 65 miles on so far. Gotta work for a living, you know.

    I will say that I am withholding judgment on the sound system. I love its features, but I'll have to listen a lot more to be sure of the sound quality. It may be the my Passat just has better speaker placement--it has dome tweeters at the top of each of the four doors, near the door hinge. The mid-range/bass speakers are in each door, again near the hinge. I haven't had speakers in the front/rear decks in 7 years, so maybe I just need to get accustomed. *OR* the Panasonic head unit in the non-NAV models isn't as good as the DENSO head unit in the NAV models. I sure hope that's not the case. Will post back later, after logging much more time with it.
  • bmgoodmanbmgoodman Posts: 102
    When I put my non-NAV CD changer into "disc random" mode, when it reaches the end of a song, it will automatically choose an MP3 at random from any folder on the disc. However, if a song comes on that I want to skip, I cannot seem to tell it to go to the "next" random track. I can only seem to go track up/down from whatever is currently playing. Anybody know a way to tell the unit to choose a new random song without waiting for the current one to finish playing?
  • pitchafitpitchafit Posts: 2
    My TCH needs to have a SAT system to have all the toys. I live in Chesapeake, VA, but am unable to find a place to install the system. I have the JBL Nav system...any idea on what I will need and where I can take it to get it installed...I talked to C City, and Best Buy here and they didn't have a dealer didn't either....Please help...
  • njeraldnjerald Posts: 688
    Buy the Toyota system from a dealer if you want the factory system. Will be expensive. There was one sold on EBAY a few months ago for about $1,200.
  • spiff72spiff72 Posts: 179
    $1200? I was assuming that by SAT system it they were referring to Satellite Radio. The MSRP for XM and Sirius is only $450-$500.

    Are you thinking of Satellite Navigation? I could see that costing $1200 (that is the MSRP for the Nav option).
  • m0t0rm0uthm0t0rm0uth Posts: 10
    Your JBL Nav unit is already "Satellite Ready". You must purchase a separate box and antenna for either Siruis or XM that the dealer can mount in your car. At that point your radio will be able to receive and decode either Sirus or XM. You have to pick a service because each service has their own unique decoder/receiver box so choose wisely.

    Cost should be between $400 and $500. The dealer will try and charge you a bunch for install depending on how much they think they can screw you.

    To put it in they simply turn a couple small screws to mount the small decoder box somewhere in car, plug it into the existing cables...and then mount the antenna and voilla...... They should do it for the inflated cost of their base sat decoder box....(the $400-$500) as their cost on that box is maybe $200 to $275
  • njeraldnjerald Posts: 688
    He probably is talking about XM or Sirius.
  • c6peterc6peter Posts: 2
    The XM kit comes in 2 boxes, cable and antenna and brackets
    to install receiver $100.00, the receiver $199.00 mounts in the trunk on right side. To install cable , you have to remove console cover, storage compartment, nav unit, glove box, side pass.side kick panel,rt.front door sill plate, rt rear door sill plate,rt.rear panel on inside of roof ext. Antenna mounts on rt side of stoplight on package shelf.
    First installation time was 3hrs, have it down to 2 hours after installing 3 units. Prices are dealer prices.
  • kdhspyderkdhspyder Posts: 7,160
    The sat radio systems are on hold at Toyota at least in our region pending the creation/modification of the install kit.

    At the moment none are being installed in any Camry's in CAT which is why CC and BB are at a loss as well.

    How is it running otherwise? ;)
  • I am not a Hybrid owner, but I did just purchase a 2007 4-cyl Camry which comes standard with, I believe, the same JBL 440 watt, 8-spkr system that you have. I was amazed and disappointed to see that in this package the tweeters are in the BACK, coupled with a subwoofer, and the front pair on the dash are just MID-RANGE.

    I thought the premium JBL system only came on the XLE and the Hybrid. In any case, I'm not experiencing the lack of speech clarity that you mention.

    Recently, I did shift the balance toward my rear speakers a couple of notches and found I liked the overall sound better that way. Before, it sounded too much like music was mainly coming from the dashboard speakers. Now, it's a much better surround effect. YMMV.
  • rmayer99rmayer99 Posts: 11
    I neglected to say that my 4-cyl is an XLE, fyi.

    Thanks for the reply. I will be interested in knowing of any customizations you make in the future.
  • pskpsk Posts: 18
    I am a new owner and so far very happy w/ my decision. I went from a GMC Yukon to the TCH so I will see a big difference in gas costs.

    My Yukon was very comfortable and I liked the leather in it. I was told getting a TCH w/ leather may take a while, but the dealership said a local shop could add aftermarket leather for basically the same price so the dealer will arrange for this to be done this week. I believe this option may even be better quality leather than the factory stuff????

    I don't believe I have golden ears nor do I believe I am too picky, but the JBL stereo isn't going to cut it for me. The front sound is muddled or muffled sounding and I do not hear anything of consequence out of the back (at fairly normal fade settings).

    I went to Circuit City and they said the rear speakers were 2 Ohm speakers so the speakers they had would be half as loud (half current actually but I assume loudness would be about half) so I would need a new Amp as well.

    So just changing the speakers won't solve the problem, so I will need a new amp as well b/c I don't want a new head unit b/c it probably would not look right (and steering wheel control issues).

    Has anyone done anything to the stereo that they think will work. I have read in the Camry thread that there is some sort of problem in installing a new amp. The CC guys seem to think no problem.
  • I don't believe I have golden ears nor do I believe I am too picky, but the JBL stereo isn't going to cut it for me. The front sound is muddled or muffled sounding and I do not hear anything of consequence out of the back (at fairly normal fade settings).

    I went to Circuit City and they said the rear speakers were 2 Ohm speakers so the speakers they had would be half as loud (half current actually but I assume loudness would be about half) so I would need a new Amp as well.

    I am also not in love with the JBL stereo in the TCH, but will probably live with it for awhile until I have time and money to do a proper upgrade. The first thing I would suggest is to make sure the tone, balance, and fader settings are not WAY off for some reason (it happens). Also, I found that fading toward the rear a couple of notches improved the overall sound for me. It was too front-heavy, as you noted, at the neutral setting.

    I don't shop at CC due to more than one negative experience there. I would suggest going to a real car audio specialist, and getting advice from them. Toyota may have some pointers, as well. Normally, I would hope/expect to swap out all of the speakers and use the stock amp, but that may not be possible (or advisable) with the TCH. I'm waiting for further info before I would consider doing anything.
  • bmgoodmanbmgoodman Posts: 102
    Of course the CC guy thinks "no problem". In my experience, they ALWAYS think that--it's not THEIR NEW CAR. I can't really weigh in on the matter other than a warning to be REALLY CAREFUL. Do nothing until you get some experienced answers here or in other TCH forums.

    In 1993, a took my week-old Nissan Altima to a local chain called "Car Toys", that claimed to be specialists in all sorts of vehicles. They had pictures of great work in some very high end cars. They had NOT worked on an Altima before, because they had just come out. They cracked a part of my dash on the install and had to buy and install a fairly big panel.

    Of course, you're talking about a hybrid car, so something going wrong could really make you miserable. Do you want to be the first TCH they work on?

    One question for you. Do you have the non-nav TCH? That's what mine is, and I'm still undecided if I can live with its stereo. I am starting to wonder if the TCH with NAV (being DENSO/JBL) has better sound than the non-NAV (Panasonic/JBL). It just seems like the NAV folks are more pleased with their stereo than the non-NAV folks. Coincidence? There's not enough data yet, methinks.
  • pskpsk Posts: 18
    Yes I agree I should wait and get more info, that is one reason I came here and get info from you guys.

    I need to find out if the Amp can be removed and a new one installed. I have heard some info about the head unit only working w/ the JBL amp so I am interested in more knowledgeable people.

    I have the non-Nav JBL. Of course on the lot there was only this one so I did not check other stereos. I have to go back to the dealer (I'm sure they want my check for the car) on Monday so if I can find a regular Camry w/ the Nav I will listen to its stereo.

    I probably should talk to someone at the Service desk as well. My salesman and the general sales manager did not know. While we were waiting around the General Sales Manager went to my car w/ me b/c he had not really been in a unit since this was the 1st time they had a car on the lot. He also thought the stereo was not too good either. They did have a recomended Audio person they deal w/ however, but I forget to get his anme in our rush to get out of the dealership late Saturday.
  • ourdad1ourdad1 Posts: 7
    I ordered my with the sirrius supposedly already installed. My dealer is now telling me that it will cost $500-$600 to have it installed. I am not knowledgeable in this area and wondering if anyone has ideas where I can purchase whatever components needed to make it work thru the radio. If I can get the parts cheaper I bet I can find an installer.
  • njeraldnjerald Posts: 688
    Lots of XM kits on EBAY.

    Sirrius not available from dealers yet. Problems with the kit, I heard.

    Install instructions are pretty good but a lot of dash and interior trim pieces to remove. Tuner mounts in the trunk.
  • lungdoc63lungdoc63 Posts: 55
    Is there a way to fast forward or back up music playing on a disc?
  • Is there a way to fast forward or back up music playing on a disc?

    Preset button 5 is rewind, preset button 6 is fast forward. There are icons that appear above these buttons when playing a disc...
  • gampagampa Posts: 78
    Usually fast forward and rewind buttons are mulitfunctional... ex: "quick tap once" and it skips to the next song... "press and hold" and it fast forwards by the seconds...

  • gassmangassman Posts: 2
    Is there a dimmer function for the cd/radio? I found the dimmer knob for the instrument panel, but could not find anything for the audio panel. I don't have navigation.
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