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Hi, just bought a 2nd Gen Eos with this radio unit. Wondering if it can be upgraded to a more modern unit with Apple AirPlay and possibly satnav (music is the most important factor, I’d prefer not to keep using aux in cable if possible). Current unit includes reversing sensor visuals so I’m concerned that changing the unit would lose that functionality? Any thoughts and advice appreciated.
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Have you tried searching the forum first? There's a lot already posted here already. Not always the one line solution you may expect, but plenty to make a decision on.
 

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I had a look at these out of curiosity because Chinese clones can be deceptive bringing installation compatibility problems. The OP is in UK and I'm not sure how compatible this model is with UK radio bands? We are using F.M which is still the most stable. DAB is around and rolling out, but patchy for mobile reception with the EOS antenna system.

I've researched what I thought should be the latest OE stock models but they always seem to be missing something. For me, top of the list functionality is bluetooth phone hands free built in BT version >V4, Satnav (third party) on a local memory card preferably not bespoke V.W. USB ports to replace the CD player slot for MP3 music play back and power amps with a decent spec. not the Chinese peak power ratings. Internet data connection would be nice to have via my mobile phone operator, not a V.W service addon. Compatible Canbus that doesn't throw errors, links to steering wheel buttons and allows the radio to be turned on and off via the key without battery drain issues. I also suspect the V.W OE processor speeds, memory and display resolution are out of date?

With care most of this may work in a clone, but I couldn't find it all in the RNS series? BT phone still seems to need a V.W addon.

Is there a 'Best of the bunch' genuine V.W OE EOS compatible head unit that has all this functionality built in?

Regards - Vox
 

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I installed a RCD330 NoName version in my 2010 , and it works very well. Only glitch is when you go into reverse, the reverse sensor screen only works once until the timer resets. eg if you are reversing , going forward and reversing as you do with parallel parking, the sensor screen only shows up the first time. The buzzers work fine.

I have paired this up with a Carlinkit 2.0 and I have wireless Carplay which is also almost flawless.
 

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Got mine on eBay for £89.99. Has a huge 9" screen and reversing camera. Bought a Carlinkit 3.0 and plugged it into one of the two USB ports at the rear. The other USB port has a lead going into the glove box and a pen drive attached with stacks of music on. It came with the correct plugs, so took minutes to fit, and a Canbus box too.😉
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For those of you with Android clones, do you get any fault codes showing under radio module 56 when scanned? Do steering controls work without errors? That's one of the checks for V.W CANbus compatibility.

Kickbox, is your cheap unit the manual type that will work with just 12V power, but you added the Canbus interface to power it on and off from the ignition switch (and get steering controls)? I'm wondering if starting with a dumb non-CAN radio and adding the CAN module is more certain, since it's only the module then that has to be compatible? Curious to know what a scanner makes of it though. Why does it say 'China' on the radio tuning screen? Do you only receive Chinese radio stations? :)
 

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For those of you with Android clones, do you get any fault codes showing under radio module 56 when scanned? Do steering controls work without errors? That's one of the checks for V.W CANbus compatibility.

Kickbox, is your cheap unit the manual type that will work with just 12V power, but you added the Canbus interface to power it on and off from the ignition switch (and get steering controls)? I'm wondering if starting with a dumb non-CAN radio and adding the CAN module is more certain, since it's only the module then that has to be compatible? Curious to know what a scanner makes of it though. Why does it say 'China' on the radio tuning screen? Do you only receive Chinese radio stations? :)
No idea what the "China" bit is all about Vox, but for the money, who cares? 😉
All the steering controls work, and it came with the canbus box.
A scan brings up zero faults, and it all works well. One thing to look out for in the setup is to make sure it turns off when you take the key out, rather than just go to sleep, as uses the exact same voltage, and will drain your battery.
 

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Just pressed the "China" button, and it's to change your location.
Why ? God knows. Still get the same channels and updates etc.

Had it for 18 months and never noticed it before!
Thanks Vox 👍👍
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Thanks. Final question, when I had my old V.W OE CD radio so long ago I can't remember, I think there was a position on the ignition switch to have the radio on without lighting up the dash (used to be called the radio position). I really miss that when I'm parked and want to watch digital TV. Does yours have this ignition switch position and does it work?

Like you I found lots of these really cheap head units and you can't be too picky with the price if it does most of what you want. Have you still got a link? What's in the setup option text that determines it shuts down and does it still remember the radio preset channels? My old clone is forgetting them now, because I suspect it needs a new lithium battery, but opening it up is like opening Pandoras box because it wasn't designed to be repaired. Is there enough audio power to drive the EOS stock speakers top down ?(I have rears, 1 each door and a puny tweeter). Most specs say 50 Watts per channel but they aren't usually rms watts. In real terms, 50 watts peak or 'music power' (with distortion) is only about 30 watts in my world).
 

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Thanks. Final question, when I had my old V.W OE CD radio so long ago I can't remember, I think there was a position on the ignition switch to have the radio on without lighting up the dash (used to be called the radio position). I really miss that when I'm parked and want to watch digital TV. Does yours have this ignition switch position and does it work?

Like you I found lots of these really cheap head units and you can't be too picky with the price if it does most of what you want. Have you still got a link? What's in the setup option text that determines it shuts down and does it still remember the radio preset channels? My old clone is forgetting them now, because I suspect it needs a new lithium battery, but opening it up is like opening Pandoras box because it wasn't designed to be repaired. Is there enough audio power to drive the EOS stock speakers top down ?(I have rears, 1 each door and a puny tweeter). Most specs say 50 Watts per channel but they aren't usually rms watts. In real terms, 50 watts peak or 'music power' (with distortion) is only about 30 watts in my world).
The head unit does work on the first click without the engine running. Handy when you're working/cleaning the car.

All the channels are remembered by the unit, (it's powered by your car's battery), and it's 4x 40w and very loud with stock speakers. Originally was going to upgrade those too, but don't see any point now.

Unfortunately the seller on eBay doesn't have these anymore, as it was quite a while ago I bought it.
 

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I never noticed it until you pointed it out.
The 'instruction book' you get with these is a tiny bit of paper folded into 4, and half of that is in a language you won't understand!
YouTube was my friend to work out the finer details.
Things like it won't let you go into the menu if the hand brake isn't applied, so you need to uncheck that option.

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Things like it won't let you go into the menu if the hand brake isn't applied,
That's wierd when most menu settings are done using power on and a couple of buttons held down. It looks like they've grouped saved radio channels together according to region/continent and 'China' is one of them, well they wouldn't have left it out if it's going into Chinese V.Ws! I liked the fact the CANbus interface worked which seems to be the part that isn't always compatible. Is the CANbus box a separate dongle plugging into the back? Mine is integrated like others making it a real problem if it doesn't work properly.
 

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Thanks, I like it because if there's an EOS CANbus interface problem, it's a small part to get replaced if it has to come from China. That leads me to think they can make the radios all the same for any vehicle and just supply customised CANbus interfaces? That would be straight forward for simple ignition switch on/off control, but add in steering wheel buttons and they must have some remote control protocol between the head unit connector and the external V.W compatible CANbus box? I found some steering wheel controls decoder boxes on Fleabay.

I think I know what they do: The radio connectors on the back are ISO spec. with some remote control pins and a CANbus pair. The radio CANbus pair can use a Chinese or generic vehicle protocol, basic on/off function from the ignition switch would probably work for most vehicles, although shutdown or go to sleep may not (Battery drain!). Other control features like steering wheel buttons and speed controlled volume protocols are probably vehicle brand/model specific, different to the generic protocol used on the radio connector.

A Canbus decoder box would therefore be vehicle brand specific to translates V.W CANbus signals either to outputs for the radio ISO connector directly (switching on and off) or sends the correct commands to the radio local CANbus pins on their rear connector? If I am right, then in future I would only look at Chinese head units sold as V.W compatible for steering wheel controls, with an external CANbus decoder/adaptor box in the kit. That should mean the ignition key function should work. One question however is does the external CANbus box itself go to sleep like all the other modules?

My Chinese clone is several years old now. It's rear connector Canbus pair is on the same pins as the OE unit I took out (so called Plug & Play!) and VCDS always throws a radio module 56 Gateway error. I now suspect the radio local Canbus protocol is something generic and not V.W compatible? With a decoder box fitted, the scanner would only see the adapter box connected to the car and not the local bus in the radio. This is why I think yours works no errors and mine (without a V.W decoder box) throws errors. I'll look for an Android replacement with external V.W CANbus decoder if it has the features I want.

It would be useful to know from a radio installer if one CAnbus adaptor box works with several Chinese clones from different sources? This would confirm my suspicion the radios themselves all use the same generic vehicle CANbus protocol? As clones they can get around V.W copyright (using V.W OE head unit IDs) by saying their built in CANbus is generic and not V.W specific.
 

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I think you're right, as the VW badge on startup can be changed to any badge in the list. (BMW, Vauxhall, Ford etc).

It also has a feature to map your steering controls so you can change what each button does, or make a button do a different command.

I really can't see them making a different head unit for each specific make/model of car.

This one is as close as I can find on eBay to the one I bought

 

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Thanks. I'm trawling through Ali at the mo. where you usually find the latest tech. A couple of clues are the unit depth. If they are using the most efficient MOS class D amps (not always best quality!) the units will be thin giving more space at the back and should run very cool. Most of them are running Android 9 or 10 with Quad or Octacore cpus which should be fast enough for mapping screen refreshing. The kit photos seem to show the CANbus box dongle. I'm not sure I can cope with all touch screen, I like a volume control knob and off switch but different versions have different features. It's amazing what you can find for £80!
 
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