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2000 Passat B5 wagon, 4-Motion, 2.8l ATQ
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53 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
3B5 Passat, w/ Monsoon audio, 8-pin CD changer.

The CD changer and Monsoon audio system have always worked fine, but I wanted some digital inputs. So, ...

I tried two of the no-name adapters: Yatour and Apps2Car. Both installed easily, and were grounded to the radio chassis. Both worked most of the time. But, both also randomly threw “CD ERR” messages on the head unit, accompanied by a beep; then playback continued. This happens via 3.5mm AUX, Bluetooth, USB, and SDxC.

Has anyone had any luck with such adapters, or been able to work around the “CD ERR” bug?

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Update:
I tried yet another model 8-pin BT adapter, which had the same problem as the others. On to Plan B [posted farther down].

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Side notes:

There appear to be numerous marketers of direct wired car adapters for Bluetooth/SDxC/USB, sold mostly on amazon, ebay, and crutchfield. The Bluetooth implementations appear mostly outdated – notably no aptX. The USB/SDxC digital audio codecs are also limited - usually no AAC. But, playing MP3 or low quality Bluetooth is probably good enough for the stock Monsoon audio system.

I would prefer these adapters over the FM transmitters or rigged cassette tapes, since they allow track seek + scan, and call answering via the head unit. The wiring is also hidden behind the head unit.
 

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Registered
2000 Passat B5 wagon, 4-Motion, 2.8l ATQ
Joined
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53 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 · (Edited)
I’ve gone to Plan B, which does work.

Plan B: Keep the CD changer wired, except the audio lines are substituted with the output of a generic BT receiver. This is not optimal, as the CD changer spins a disk with the signal going nowhere; but it works reliably and there are lots of choices for BT receivers. The device and wiring can be concealed behind the radio.

There are 2 BT receivers in particular whose specs I like. They run on 12VDC, are reasonably priced, small, marine-rated, and support aptX. The JL Audio MBT-RX is the popular one, with lots of reviews at crutchfield and amazon. The NVX VUBT2 appears to have identical audio specs, but with different connecting wires. They both support only A2DP profile, so no controls for phone calls. I chose the NVX since it uses a 3.5mm connection and has a 12V pass-through wire.

For testing, I powered the NVX with a common 9V battery and connected it to a home stereo. The noise level was quite low. The BT re-connected quickly and consistently. The streaming was reliable. The sound quality was better than expected – on par with a modest CD player.

After I wired the NVX to the Monsoon system, I noticed: (1) the noise floor was much higher [presumably from the amp], and (2) the speakers weren’t very neutral. In other words, it sounded like the original system.

I’m happy with the mods, and for $40-50 [wiring harness extender, BT receiver], it’s an alternative to replacing the head unit.

Electronics Wire Cable Technology Electronic device
 
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