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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Review of A-Sure AS-W7 GPS/DVD Head Unit for VW Passat B6

I purchased from A-Sure in they’re ebay store. I paid $499 Shipped. (This is the same model as the TID-7501 from what I can tell)

List of features:

1. Double Din



2. 7” HD LCD touch screen monitor (800 x 480 resolution)
Great Picture, Nice and bright with no dead pixels. Can be hard to see if in direct sunlight, It is still visible in the day even with my sunglasses on, although not as bright as when in the dark or shaded area. It almost has to be direct sunlight on the display to make it so you can’t see the display. Probably the same with all monitors in cars.

3. Hands free Bluetooth:
Make calls and listen to music loaded on your Bluetooth device, I haven’t tried the music though blue tooth because my phone doesn’t support it. Also my contacts don’t come though either. I don’t know if that is my cheap prepaid phone or if it just doesn’t work. Phone calls are made with ease and can be dialed from the touch screen. Sound quality is not bad. Comments when I asked about how it sounds were pretty positive. They just said it sounded like I was on speaker phone (essentially I was).



4. Rear View Camera input:
I installed the Reverse camera (a real PITA). I tapped the power from the reverse light and routed the wire down through the trunk lid. (I soldered, shrink wrapped and wrapped everything in electrical tape when completed). The reverse camera I purchased was made to replace one of the existing plate lights. It has a small light along with the camera. I pulled the light out (right one) and wired in the new plug for the light on the camera. I routed the camera wire up trough a grommet in the trunk at the back and then connected my power wire and ground wire. (there is a grounding post on the back of the fender well in front of the battery on the 3.6 Passat. J Then I routed the RCA wire up along the passenger side and put it under the door trim, over the glove box (removed it). No visible wires at all in the cab or the trunk. The camera works perfectly.



5. Auxiliary input:
Not tested yet. I have a Creative labs Zen, that I’ll test this with eventually.

6. Ipod control
Not tested, as I don’t have an Ipod. I tested this out, it seems you can only play Music from the ipod. the playlist, floders, etc. are all selectable from the head unit.

7. Analog TV Tuner
Not tested, no analog TV signals.

8. DVB-T ready (optional)
This feature wasn't installed on my unit. ATSC is required for the US and is and additional receiver. I’m not planning on using any Television features.

9. Can-Bus Module:
My MFD (multi function display) doesn’t show anything while in the radio selection. Most importantly to me the steering wheel controls do work. Volume UP/Down, Track UP/Down, Mute, and answer all work like they did before with my stock VW Unit.

10. Dual SD card slots
One SD card slots supports SDHC (4 Class or higher) , can read up to 16GB SD cards. The other one holds your GPS software, I’m not sure on the capacity of this one, but would imagine it’s the same. I’ve have a Kingston 16gb card and it works perfectly, I have used some older 2gb card that would display correctly but didn’t have the transfer speed and was choppy. If you use the SDHC (Class 4 or above) you won’t have any issues.



11. Languages:
English / Dutch / Spanish / French / Italian

12. 2 Zones:
Front seat driver can see GPS maps, while rear seat passengers can watches DVD from Auxiliary Monitors. I plan on installing some headrest monitors at a later date, so this will be handy.

13. WinCE 6.0 and 128MB RAM:
More stable, faster, more powerful system than units using Wince5.0 and 64MB ram. I haven’t noticed any glitches in running my unit. It displays the GPS maps very well and smooth. The audio is nice and smooth as well.



14. Picture In Picture (PIP):
You can watch two different interfaces at the same time. This comes in very handy when you have your radio or music playing from SD or USB and want a small Navi Screen. You can also be watching a DVD or other media and still have you Navi up. The window can also be sized based on 3 preset sizes that you can select.




15. Virtual CD changer:
Store 6 discs in the 2GB internal Memory. 6-CD’s can be stored. I’m not sure that I will ever use this feature. Might be cool if you borrow a CD or something. I put a few songs in it and it works fine. It does give you the option o random play this function and interface. Not sure if its specific to the 1 cd place or if it will play though multiple CD that are stored. If I get the time to mess with it some I’ll let you know.



16. GPS:
The Unit came preloaded with Igo 8 (not sure what version) on a 2GB SD card. I really like the Igo 8 and its function. I haven’t had any problem with the GPS. In my Passat I installed the GPS antenna above the drop down Unit in the glove box. I removed the glove box and secured it to the top with Velcro and some wire ties. I have really good reception with it mounted in this location. A cool bonus is when it’s on the night colors. The background is black and the streets show up in blue so it matches the interior night lights perfectly.




17. DVD:
Plays DVD’s just like any DVD player. The drive will also read CD, CD-R, CD-RW, DVD-R and can read MP3, WMA, etc.

18. Radio
The radio works like any other radio. It has 24 presets for FM and 8 for AM. One really cool feature is you can hit the center button where is displays the frequency. Then instead of scanning through to find a station which is kind of annoying you can simple dial in the frequency and hit enter. Then to save the stations into the presets you just hold the button on the touch screen and it sets it in. It also displays the Station, Artist and Song Titles on the top.




Some of the setup screens





Installation Review and a few additional notes:

This unit was pretty simple to install, the hard part is routing the wires to the glove box for the iPod and USB cables. I also routed the GPS module to the tray. I installed it above the pull down changer slot with some Velcro and wire ties to wind up the additional wire length. Pretty simple. After I installed the camera I found it a lot easier to just take out the glove box. There are a few screws across the bottom and 4 along the top, you need to pop off the little filler piece to the far right on the top. Before removing the entire unit. The wires are long enough to just set it at you feet.

The wiring is plug and play, no cutting at all. The head unit fits perfectly into the trim bezel for the radio. As advertised.

A few more comments on the SD card operation. I use this the most often to listen to music. It works as is should. Similar to the explorer in window you can move up and down, select folder and play what is in the folder. I have played Divx movies (.avi files) and they played without issue. Also I have been able to use this function to view .jpg files as well. One thing I wish was available was a random play form the SD card. I’ve suggested it to the company so who knows maybe in a future unit.

About USB Plug. Same interface as the SD interface with the same functions. Seems to run slightly slower when loading, but plays everything fine. I’ve tested with an 8GB USB drive and it worked fine.

There is a Dimm button that you can select that has three settings. Bright , Dimm, screen off. The buttons text on the unit are Red with a green answer button which match my VW interior lighting perfectly, they can be changed to the opposite for Sakota models.

More to come if I think of anything else to share.

Camera Notes:
If you install the rear view camera. you will need to get a Engine Noise Suppressor. this will resolve the issues that you would have with the camera having wavy lines or in some cases no picture at all, this is common when you first start the car and the alternator topping off the battery. the Suppressor is a simple install and they are fairly inexpensive on ebay (around $6). I have linked the one I have to the attached picture. It works great. I have also added some install notes to the picture. :)



Here is a new picture with the new camera installed. It's this one... Sedan Camera As you can see, it has a great angle of view. I won't have any problem seeing if someone/something is behind me now.

for those that have a Wagon, the camera above won't work. you'll want one like this... Wagon Camera or similar. verify with your seller.



Matching License Plate light to Camera Light:
I've changed out the other license plate light out with a Festton LED white light, this light matches the LED light that is in the Rear view camera, the color and brightness matches great and gives them both the same look. I used this bulb. 36MM Festoon Error Free LED Light bulb

here are the installed pictures of the white LED license place light to match my rear view camera with the LED light.




My Seller and My experience with my purchase:

I asked the seller several questions prior to purchase. All questions were answered within 24 hours (mostly because of the 14 hour time difference, they are in HK). After purchase of the unit I still was having some issued with the CAN-BUS module and my steering wheel controls weren’t working. They were very helpful and answered all my questions, made suggestions and when it was determined that the module wasn’t working, they suggested changing it and made arrangements for me to get a new one. When the new one arrived it fixed the steering wheel controls that I really wanted to function. Their service was excellent !! so I’m going to plug them. If you’re interested please let them know you read my review. You can contact them (Charlie or Erika) at [email protected] (let them know briankstan sent you).

Overall I am extremely pleased with the Head Unit and its Function, Fit, and Finish. It matches the interior perfectly. If you’re in the market for a new head unit and haven’t considered getting one of these units , it’s something you should consider. At the time I wrote this is was in my car for about a month. (Edit... this has been installed for almost a year now).



Issue with SD card Music Sorting [Solved]: **update**

I was having with the sorting of the folders and songs on the SD card. What would happen is when new music or folders are added they wouldn't appear on the Stereo in the right order (alphabetically).

Tthis program resorts the card based on the name of the Fat16, or Fat 32 file system and puts them in the correct order when displayed on the unit.

Only thing I wish it had was a random sort for my mixed folder so it would play them in a random order, rather than by track #.

you need to select each folder on the drive and have it sort based on the settings you put in. Pretty simple, don't forget to save it after you do the sorting.

Give it a shot.

DriveSort

If you have any question let me know.
 

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Pictures uploaded. that should help to visualize what the interfaces look like. ;)
Thanks for the thorough post and pics. I'd buy this rightnow but man, installation is what scares the :crazy: out of me. :whistle:

I suppose I can fly u down to do this? :poke: with a pack of Heineken and some German chicks on the side?
 

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Im really diggin this, love the OEM look and all the features that it actually comes with. How is it operating the buttoms/screen? Stuff from Hong Kong just scares me...also how long did it take to get to you?
 

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Thanks for the thorough post and pics. I'd buy this rightnow but man, installation is what scares the :crazy: out of me. :whistle:

I suppose I can fly u down to do this? :poke: with a pack of Heineken and some German chicks on the side?
the installation was a breeze for the head unit. took maybe 15 minutes tops. The camera on the other hand was a pain.

Im really diggin this, love the OEM look and all the features that it actually comes with. How is it operating the buttoms/screen? Stuff from Hong Kong just scares me...also how long did it take to get to you?
the buttons feel good and solid. the touch screen as far as I'm concerned works very well. I just use my fingers, but it comes with a stylus as well. The quality looks good. Only time can tell, but these unit have been improving over the years. Shipping took 4 days. they send it air mail express. I was suprised at how fast I had it. It shipped same day payment was made and they send me tracking #'s as well.
 

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Great review :thumbup:

I understand that it is plug-n-play for the Passat B6.
Anything that would need to be changed in a car with a Dynaudio system. I also have a 6CD changer in the HU and an additional 6CD changer in the glove box.

Would I be able to hook up the additional CD changer in the glove-box?
Also what are the options for Satellite Radio? I have an active Sirius subscription. Any way the existing module can be hooked to the HU!!!!

Thanks
 

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is there any chance you have a pic of the back side of the deck. im a into car stereo stuff and im just curious if tht has any pre-amp out puts and if so what there voltages are.

i.e.... Sub (red/white) Front(red/white) rear(red/white) rca cable plug ins. to plug in external amps.

it looks like a really nice piece good luck and thanks in advance
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Great review :thumbup:

I understand that it is plug-n-play for the Passat B6.
Anything that would need to be changed in a car with a Dynaudio system. I also have a 6CD changer in the HU and an additional 6CD changer in the glove box.

Would I be able to hook up the additional CD changer in the glove-box?
Also what are the options for Satellite Radio? I have an active Sirius subscription. Any way the existing module can be hooked to the HU!!!!

Thanks
this unit doesn't have contols for the changer, they have another one that does. I have Dynaudio and it sounds great with this unit. There are no options for Satellite Radio. I'm not sure any of these units have support for the satellite radio.

is there any chance you have a pic of the back side of the deck. im a into car stereo stuff and im just curious if tht has any pre-amp out puts and if so what there voltages are.

i.e.... Sub (red/white) Front(red/white) rear(red/white) rca cable plug ins. to plug in external amps.

it looks like a really nice piece good luck and thanks in advance
I second that. Would definitely like to see that.
here is a shot of the back(not my pic) it has a mod for an additional USB plug on it that mine doesn't have (yet :) ). what it doesn't show is the accessory plug that has RCA's for Front output, Rear output, Camera in, Aux in, I don't recall a specific RCA plug for a dedicated sub out. I'd have to check for sure. When I install my Aux plug for my Zen I'll check for sure. here is a pic that shows the back an accessories. Mine didn't have the TV so it's a little different.



 

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Where's the usb port on this unit? you indicated that you plugged in 8GB USB HDD in your note above. How many CDs can u put in at a time? is it same as the stock one? i.e. 6 ? did u get to test out the AUX port in the glove box?

Did u test out the bluetooth / phone features? I see the mic in the unit but how good is it? any echo issues? does all the speakers work ? if you're playing music and a call comes in, does it mute as soon as you answer? how does this work? Does the unit announce the caller's name / #? and does it import any of the phone contacts..etc? It would have been really nice if it display say a txt msg on the screen or lets u reply (I know this isn't a feature of this unit) just wishing out loud in my head..

Did you bought the rear view camera unit separately? if so, how much, do u have any pics of the trunk wiring etc and how much is it? link if you have it

Lastly, I'd like to see a video of the folder-level browsing sans finger input. I really hope not to have to push that scroll ^ and down arrow I saw in the pic above. I hope it has kinetic scrolling
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Where's the usb port on this unit? you indicated that you plugged in 8GB USB HDD in your note above. How many CDs can u put in at a time? is it same as the stock one? i.e. 6 ? did u get to test out the AUX port in the glove box?

Did u test out the bluetooth / phone features? I see the mic in the unit but how good is it? any echo issues? does all the speakers work ? if you're playing music and a call comes in, does it mute as soon as you answer? how does this work? Does the unit announce the caller's name / #? and does it import any of the phone contacts..etc? It would have been really nice if it display say a txt msg on the screen or lets u reply (I know this isn't a feature of this unit) just wishing out loud in my head..

Did you bought the rear view camera unit separately? if so, how much, do u have any pics of the trunk wiring etc and how much is it? link if you have it

Lastly, I'd like to see a video of the folder-level browsing sans finger input. I really hope not to have to push that scroll ^ and down arrow I saw in the pic above. I hope it has kinetic scrolling
it only holds 1 disk, it have the virtual CD changer (meaning you store the disk in the units 2gb memory). I haven't really used it and not sure I really will because I use the SD for the music. I haven't installed my Aux. lines yet.

the usb port is on the back of the unit. a USB extension cable is provided and I routed it to the glove box. I plug in my USB stick into the extension on the glove box. It's not a hard drive although you probably could do that assuming it's one that doesn't need external power.

the bluetooth seems to work great. I haven't had any issues with people saying it sounded bad. It mutes all the audio that is playing when the phone picks up the call and it rings through the cars speakers. I don't know it the text messaging works though this unit. I don't text much and haven't received one while in the car. My contacts do not come through on this unit. I don't know if it's the phone (I have a cheap LG phone) or if the function isn't available on this unit. The phone # does show up on the unit of the incoming call. I don't believe it shows the names as it doesn't see my contacts.

I purchased the rearview camera seperate. Just search for them on ebay. I got this one (Ebay # 130406122916), but I would recommend this one as it looks to have a better camera angle. (Ebay # 300411521629). Mine points down a little more than I would like. It does show you that something is there however so I'm not sure I'll change it. I didn't take any install pics. but I can walk you though it if needed.

about the folder structure. yes if you have folders in there and need to scroll you have to hit the up and down arrows. it would be a pain if you were changing folder alot, but it's really not too bad. I can make a video when I have the time if you'd like. I'm still learning the functions of this unit so there may be another way to do it. I'll let you know if I figure something else out.
 

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sorry if this was already covered, I tried to read through everything - this looks amazing. I see you are in Utah, did you get north american maps or did you have to buy that separately and if so, how/where did you do so?
 

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Got another couple of other q's for ya...

you mentioned the camera you installed was made to replace one of the license plate lights - can you show a pic of the finished install and perhaps also link to the camera you have?

"night colors" - does this function automatically based on the headlights being on/off? do the night colors carry across the entire user interface (perhaps just dimming the display)?

any fitting issues with the large amount of wiring involved behind the unit? I know there's a lot of space behind the stock head unit but I'm wondering if you found it cramped with the additional wires/adapters.

how did you run to the glove box? I've taken out my head unit to install an iPod adapter (USA SPEC found here - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000NN6XVY?tag=onanbl-20&camp=213381&creative=390973&linkCode=as4&creativeASIN=B000NN6XVY&adid=0QNBSWY3NEPCFGRTFZ63&) and when I was poking around, I didn't see an easy pass through to behind the glove box - I'll admit I didn't look very hard.

the "second" usb port that you said yours didn't have "yet" - how are you planning to do this?

the last one (sorry) is about the USB drive you said you used. was it a flash drive (memory stick) or was it an actually external USB hard drive? I'm curious about the power provided via the USB port as I have a 160GB USB drive that I would love to mount in the glove box but it consumes a full 500ma of power from the USB port.

really sorry for the laundry list but I wanted to get it all out to you while it was fresh in my mind... any answers you can provide are greatly appreciated.

I've sent a message to the email address on the auction asking about operation with an iPhone as you mentioned you didn't have a pod/phone and couldn't test. Specifically, I am curious about how much bluetooth function there is between the two - just calls, or music (pandora, ipod) as well. Also hoping they can tell me about the charging situation if the iphone is plugged into the dock connector that's included.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
see replies in red below. :)

Got another couple of other q's for ya...

you mentioned the camera you installed was made to replace one of the license plate lights - can you show a pic of the finished install and perhaps also link to the camera you have?

I can get a picture of it later for you.

"night colors" - does this function automatically based on the headlights being on/off? do the night colors carry across the entire user interface (perhaps just dimming the display)?

the night colors on the Navi are based on when the lights are on/off. in the other modes the display will dimm when the lights are on.

any fitting issues with the large amount of wiring involved behind the unit? I know there's a lot of space behind the stock head unit but I'm wondering if you found it cramped with the additional wires/adapters.

I didn't have any fitment issues even with the mass amount of wires back there. :)

how did you run to the glove box? I've taken out my head unit to install an iPod adapter (USA SPEC found here - https://www.amazon.com/dp/B000NN6XVY?tag=onanbl-20&camp=213381&creative=390973&linkCode=as4&creativeASIN=B000NN6XVY&adid=0QNBSWY3NEPCFGRTFZ63&) and when I was poking around, I didn't see an easy pass through to behind the glove box - I'll admit I didn't look very hard.

if you remove the glove box, there is plenty of room to run your wires. without removing the box it is very difficult to access.

the "second" usb port that you said yours didn't have "yet" - how are you planning to do this?

there is a mod for doing this, it requires you to take apart the unit and solder the new USB cord onto the board. I probably won't do this until I have to, there is a new mod coming out pretty soon that will allow internet access using WiFi. If I decide I want to do this for this reason I will, but if not I'll probably wait until the warranty is up.

the last one (sorry) is about the USB drive you said you used. was it a flash drive (memory stick) or was it an actually external USB hard drive? I'm curious about the power provided via the USB port as I have a 160GB USB drive that I would love to mount in the glove box but it consumes a full 500ma of power from the USB port.

I used a USB Flash drive (8gb) and it worked no problem. I'm not sure you can power a drive that required a lot of power but I couldn't say for sure.

really sorry for the laundry list but I wanted to get it all out to you while it was fresh in my mind... any answers you can provide are greatly appreciated.

I've sent a message to the email address on the auction asking about operation with an iPhone as you mentioned you didn't have a pod/phone and couldn't test. Specifically, I am curious about how much bluetooth function there is between the two - just calls, or music (pandora, ipod) as well. Also hoping they can tell me about the charging situation if the iphone is plugged into the dock connector that's included.

I did borrow a friends Ipod, it gave me access to the songs, and playlist but I didn't see the vidoes he had on it. I only fiddled with it for a few minutes so I'm still not clear on what is possible.

With my phone I only use the bluetooth for calling. I don't have the phonebook function working, it could be my phone, but I'm not sure. I have a cheap Net10 phone so it doesn't have all the bells and whistles that the smart phones have.
 
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