Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

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DHallworth
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Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by DHallworth » 07 Apr 2013, 21:44

I figured this out when looking to add the aux input to the Clarion radio in my P38 Range Rover. After finishing the Range Rover I decided to have a look at the Xantia head unit to discover it was exactly the same so here's a how to guide. I've not actually done it to this Xantia radio, this is an old knackered one I used to take pictures with, it is done to my V6 radio and is working perfectly.

**This will stop your cassette player working so don't proceed if you use cassettes still**

To do this you will need:

YOUR RADIO CODE!!!!
Cross point screwdriver
Soldering iron and some solder
Pair of scissors
Small knife
3.5mm iPod cable
Ferrite Coil (not essential but might be handy)

Here's the 3.5mm cable I used on all of mine as it's a good quality shielded cable, they're available on eBay for around £8 I think it is.

Image

Here's the ferrite coils I ordered from eBay, you can occasionally get a little interference if you don't use one of these, these work out at about £1 each in a packet of 5:

Image

Take your Xantia Radio... Obvious but vital!

Image

Remove the two screws indicated by the screwdriver and the pen then remove the lid from the radio.

Image

You will now see the insides of your radio and the tape drive unit. Remove the 4 screws circled in white and lift the cassette mechanism straight upwards as it's mounted to a socket on the main board of the radio.

Image

Looking at the back of the unit where the PCB is you will see this:

Image

Now, take your 3.5mm cable, on mine I cut it behind the lump with Belkin written on it, where it splits into two. If you hold the cable beside the board shown in the next picture you can work out what you need length wise. I would start with the cable at the ground as the ground isn't insulated so you don't want to much of it flying around inside your radio, then measure up to the right and left channels, you will need enough of the cable stripped to allow you to get the inner cores to the top of the golden contacts. You will need to bare the wires on the ends of it now. Use the knife and gently cut away the outer of the cable being careful not to mark the inner core or the shielding. Once you have bared the wires it is a good idea just to tin them with solder as it ensures a better connection once on the board.

(Picture borrowed from Google Images)
Image

Once you have bared and tinned the wires you will then need to look at the PCB on the back of the tape mechanism again:

Image

The colours/channels are as below:

Red core = Right channel
White core = Left channel (white is sometimes replaced on 3.5mm cables with a black core)
Copper core = Ground

Solder the wires you've just tinned onto the corresponding contacts on the board, and that's you sorted out the input side of it. There's two more steps left to make sure that you don't get any interference.

On the top of the tape mechanism at the front beside where the tape goes in there is a big lump of solder, melt this using your soldering iron and at the same time with your other hand, slide the board backwards (away from the PCB you've just soldered your cable to!) this is disconnecting the PCB that takes the input from the heads on the cassette deck.

Image

The final step with the soldering iron is to melt the solder on the ribbon cable coming onto the board where the screwdriver is pointing. There's 5 blobs of it. Once you've melted all 5 you can pull that little PCB up and the ribbon cable will be left attached to the cassette mechanism.

Image

Now, carefully put the cassette mechanism back into the radio, you need to line it up carefully as you don't want to bend the pins on the socket going onto the main board in the radio. Now put the 4 screws back in to hold this down. There are a couple of different ways to route the cable out of the radio unit so choose which ever one suits you best, you could even cut a notch out of the radio frame to give you better access if you wish.

Once you've done this put the lid back on the radio and refit the two screws - Job Done! :)

To use your new aux input you need to switch the radio onto the tape input. Unfortunately there's no easy way to confuse the radio into thinking there's a tape in there. If you solder the switch shut it thinks the tape is jammed and ejects it as there's an optical sensor which watches the wheels on a cassette spinning so there's no other way around this then to have a cassette inserted into the radio.

If you get a cassette tape and remove the 5 screws from it as pictured below and open it up.

(Picture taken from Google images)
Image

Now that it's open if you take the two reels out and remove all of the magnetic tape from them, once you've done this, put the reels back into the cassette where they were, put the cover back on the tape and put the 5 screws back into the tape.

If you refit the radio to the car now, and route the new cable to where you want it, once you've decided where you're going to put it, snap one of the ferrite coils around it where it won't get in the way, you don't need to use one of these but it's a good idea to reduce the change of interference. I put mine into the little storage box where the code pad used to live on the Series 1 Xantia. Turn the radio on and enter the code, insert your new cassette tape and plug the 3.5mm plug into your iPod you should have crystal clear music from your iPod coming through the car speakers. It works great, I use my iPhone with TomTom on it, it fades the music out and plays the navigation instructions through the cars speakers.

If anyone doesn't feel comfortable doing this themselves I'm happy to do it for them if they will send me the radio. Obviously I need to charge for the parts and return postage. A few beer tokens are always welcome though :) The first one I did took around 45 mins, I've done 4 of them now, the last one took me 30 mins.

David.
Last edited by DHallworth on 03 May 2015, 00:38, edited 1 time in total.

MikeT
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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by MikeT » 09 Apr 2013, 02:24

Nice mod, David, thanks for sharing 8-)

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by ausxm » 09 Apr 2013, 13:45

smart thinking david, will pull my radio out of my xm, and have a good look at the boards,
most euro cars including the xm,range rover, etc at the time imported to australia were fitted with eurovox radios,
but the underlying workings are the same, it's still a cassette job,thanks for the tip.ausxm

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by DHallworth » 09 Apr 2013, 18:14

I've done both of our P38 Range Rover's, the V6 radio has been done but I've still to do my XM one.

Can't imagine it being that different. It is however a Clarion radio of similar vintage.

Regards

David.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by DHallworth » 03 May 2015, 00:37

Just to give this another bump for others to see... I decided that tonight I'd modify the Activa radio from having a functioning tape deck which I've never used to having a working 3.5mm input for my iPod to connect to as I wanted it done for the trip to the Northern in a few weeks.

Once it's done all you can see is the tail of the wire sitting in the little storage pocket in front of the gear lever...

Image

On all of the conversions I've done I've used one of these Belkin Cables...

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/251695500476? ... 26_rdc%3D1" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

If you cut the cable exactly in half there's more then enough of it to feed into the storage compartment on the Xantia. It's probably a bit too long but you can push it back through into the dashboard.

David.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by Zelandeth » 03 May 2015, 01:02

Interesting. My intention (once I've got an original head unit rather than the piece of aftermarket garbage that's in there just now) was to get a line-in socket in place by intercepting the lines from the CD changer, assuming that that just provides line level audio to the head unit rather than digital data...

If that doesn't work out (for instance if it insists on having a CD playing to actually monitor that input), this would appear to be the obvious solution.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by DHallworth » 03 May 2015, 01:28

The problem with removing the CD changer is to do with the communications. If you unplug the changer the head unit won't let you select the CD changer as an input. When the radio is turned on it polls the CD changer with a certain communications protocol. The changer replies basically saying "I'm here" and the head unit enables the CD changer input.

To be able to spoof the signal that it sends back you'd need to know exactly what protocol the CD changer was talking to the heading on.

This method is much simpler, it takes about half an hour to do and requires no messing around with protocols etc.

I must admit, my reason for doing this rather then opting for an aftermarket unit is that they don't do any sensible after market unit that would sit sensibly in the Xantia. There's no after market units that look OEM either, they just look wrong IMO.

David.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by Zelandeth » 03 May 2015, 01:42

My plan was to basically leave the changer untouched, all I was planning to do was to splice in a socket to allow me to inject an audio signal into the feed between it and the head unit (I'm assuming that the wiring basically consists of power, comms and analogue audio). My plan was to just break into the audio line to add a 3.5mm jack probably in the glove compartment, and leave everything else alone.

The head unit that's in there at the moment is horrible - not only does it have a gaping hole around it, but the illumination is all red - which in a car where everything is green just looks plain stupid.

What eventually sold me on the unit that I fitted into the Saab was the fact that I eventually managed to find one that didn't have a million flashy lights on, and on which I could dial in a custom colour for the backlighting to match the odd slightly whitish green that is used for all the dash and switchgear lighting in there.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by jamesRIBEIRO » 07 Feb 2018, 23:12

DHallworth wrote:
07 Apr 2013, 21:44
I figured this out when looking to add the aux input to the Clarion radio in my P38 Range Rover. After finishing the Range Rover I decided to have a look at the Xantia head unit to discover it was exactly the same so here's a how to guide. I've not actually done it to this Xantia radio, this is an old knackered one I used to take pictures with, it is done to my V6 radio and is working perfectly.

**This will stop your cassette player working so don't proceed if you use cassettes still**

To do this you will need:

YOUR RADIO CODE!!!!
Cross point screwdriver
Soldering iron and some solder
Pair of scissors
Small knife
3.5mm iPod cable
Ferrite Coil (not essential but might be handy)

Here's the 3.5mm cable I used on all of mine as it's a good quality shielded cable, they're available on eBay for around £8 I think it is.

Image

Here's the ferrite coils I ordered from eBay, you can occasionally get a little interference if you don't use one of these, these work out at about £1 each in a packet of 5:

Image

Take your Xantia Radio... Obvious but vital!

Image

Remove the two screws indicated by the screwdriver and the pen then remove the lid from the radio.

Image

You will now see the insides of your radio and the tape drive unit. Remove the 4 screws circled in white and lift the cassette mechanism straight upwards as it's mounted to a socket on the main board of the radio.

Image

Looking at the back of the unit where the PCB is you will see this:

Image

Now, take your 3.5mm cable, on mine I cut it behind the lump with Belkin written on it, where it splits into two. If you hold the cable beside the board shown in the next picture you can work out what you need length wise. I would start with the cable at the ground as the ground isn't insulated so you don't want to much of it flying around inside your radio, then measure up to the right and left channels, you will need enough of the cable stripped to allow you to get the inner cores to the top of the golden contacts. You will need to bare the wires on the ends of it now. Use the knife and gently cut away the outer of the cable being careful not to mark the inner core or the shielding. Once you have bared the wires it is a good idea just to tin them with solder as it ensures a better connection once on the board.

(Picture borrowed from Google Images)
Image

Once you have bared and tinned the wires you will then need to look at the PCB on the back of the tape mechanism again:

Image

The colours/channels are as below:

Red core = Right channel
White core = Left channel (white is sometimes replaced on 3.5mm cables with a black core)
Copper core = Ground

Solder the wires you've just tinned onto the corresponding contacts on the board, and that's you sorted out the input side of it. There's two more steps left to make sure that you don't get any interference.

On the top of the tape mechanism at the front beside where the tape goes in there is a big lump of solder, melt this using your soldering iron and at the same time with your other hand, slide the board backwards (away from the PCB you've just soldered your cable to!) this is disconnecting the PCB that takes the input from the heads on the cassette deck.

Image

The final step with the soldering iron is to melt the solder on the ribbon cable coming onto the board where the screwdriver is pointing. There's 5 blobs of it. Once you've melted all 5 you can pull that little PCB up and the ribbon cable will be left attached to the cassette mechanism.

Image

Now, carefully put the cassette mechanism back into the radio, you need to line it up carefully as you don't want to bend the pins on the socket going onto the main board in the radio. Now put the 4 screws back in to hold this down. There are a couple of different ways to route the cable out of the radio unit so choose which ever one suits you best, you could even cut a notch out of the radio frame to give you better access if you wish.

Once you've done this put the lid back on the radio and refit the two screws - Job Done! :)

To use your new aux input you need to switch the radio onto the tape input. Unfortunately there's no easy way to confuse the radio into thinking there's a tape in there. If you solder the switch shut it thinks the tape is jammed and ejects it as there's an optical sensor which watches the wheels on a cassette spinning so there's no other way around this then to have a cassette inserted into the radio.

If you get a cassette tape and remove the 5 screws from it as pictured below and open it up.

(Picture taken from Google images)
Image

Now that it's open if you take the two reels out and remove all of the magnetic tape from them, once you've done this, put the reels back into the cassette where they were, put the cover back on the tape and put the 5 screws back into the tape.

If you refit the radio to the car now, and route the new cable to where you want it, once you've decided where you're going to put it, snap one of the ferrite coils around it where it won't get in the way, you don't need to use one of these but it's a good idea to reduce the change of interference. I put mine into the little storage box where the code pad used to live on the Series 1 Xantia. Turn the radio on and enter the code, insert your new cassette tape and plug the 3.5mm plug into your iPod you should have crystal clear music from your iPod coming through the car speakers. It works great, I use my iPhone with TomTom on it, it fades the music out and plays the navigation instructions through the cars speakers.

If anyone doesn't feel comfortable doing this themselves I'm happy to do it for them if they will send me the radio. Obviously I need to charge for the parts and return postage. A few beer tokens are always welcome though :) The first one I did took around 45 mins, I've done 4 of them now, the last one took me 30 mins.

David.
David, just folowed the proceders and it works thanks for the top tip.
have a good one
Last edited by myglaren on 07 Feb 2018, 23:20, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Fixed quote tags

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DHallworth
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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by DHallworth » 08 Feb 2018, 23:07

Great :)

It really is a worthwhile addition. I use mine every time I take the Activa for a blast.

David.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by andy5 » 09 Feb 2018, 01:01

It might be sacrilege on this thread, but I bought a Nokia equivalent of the Griffin iTrip, for 99p on eBay.

Bit of messing about finding a good output frequency that is ok across the country, until I settled on 87.7.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by CitroJim » 09 Feb 2018, 08:53

andy5 wrote:
09 Feb 2018, 01:01
Bit of messing about finding a good output frequency that is ok across the country, until I settled on 87.7.


Right at the very bottom of the band!!!

Problem with FM is a phenomenon called 'capture effect' whereby an adjacent strong signal can entirely wipe out the fairly weak signal from such devices even if they are set to the frequency of an apparently clear channel...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capture_effect

Years back I tried one of these sort of devices and found it almost unusable due to capture effect.

Ultimate performance and serviceability will depend upon how good the car's receiver is and how strong the signal from the device is...

If you have no great interest in receiving FM radio it will help if the aerial is disconnected or rendered inoperative when the little FM adapter is in use.

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by andy5 » 20 Feb 2018, 18:20

CitroJim wrote:
09 Feb 2018, 08:53
andy5 wrote:
09 Feb 2018, 01:01
Bit of messing about finding a good output frequency that is ok across the country, until I settled on 87.7.


Right at the very bottom of the band!!!

Problem with FM is a phenomenon called 'capture effect' whereby an adjacent strong signal can entirely wipe out the fairly weak signal from such devices even if they are set to the frequency of an apparently clear channel...

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capture_effect

Years back I tried one of these sort of devices and found it almost unusable due to capture effect.

Ultimate performance and serviceability will depend upon how good the car's receiver is and how strong the signal from the device is...

If you have no great interest in receiving FM radio it will help if the aerial is disconnected or rendered inoperative when the little FM adapter is in use.


Yes, I'd found decent quiet channels for locally and within 50 miles, but further afield even adjacent channels could break in as you suggest. Not much point stopping in a lay by to find another, only to have a problem again 45 minutes later.

Then it struck me to look below 88, and I found a frequency list. 87.7 has a mixture of hospital, student and temporary event stations, all on 50 mW output except 1W in Shetland. Nothing much else between 87.6 and 88.1, so probably anything under 88 would be fine

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by ekjdm14 » 21 Feb 2018, 20:36

I've found those cheap tape adapters with a 3.5mm input work ok if you fiddle with the internal gears a bit to make them spin freely. Either that, or on our S1 Xantiae the stereos have an aux input anyway, so we just use a 3.5 male-male lead between phone and stereo... Newer is not always better ;)

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Re: Adding 3.5mm Aux in to Series 2 Xantia Radio

Post by CitroJim » 22 Feb 2018, 06:46

ekjdm14 wrote:
21 Feb 2018, 20:36
Newer is not always better ;)


Hear hear =D> :-D