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This is news to me. Tried to Google it but found nothing. Do you have a link to this replacement module?
I’m in the process of trying to figure out exactly what it is and if it’s comparable. This is a video of a similar product, adding a video interface. I have a link for adding CarPlay to a Macan PCM 3.1, But I’m unsure of it’s just activating the latent feature for that model.

This video shows taking apart a 3.1, removing the XM board and adding some low rent video module.

https://youtu.be/xwO37nWkXWY

Here’s the video of the CarPlay addition to a Macan. It’s a maze of Chinese sites if you deep dive, but the two products are featured together.

https://youtu.be/2GWqc-XsflU
 

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I can not think of a reason why it would not work. The PCM for the 981 and 991 appear to be the same.
Can anybody validate that they are?
 

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Just for everyone-s info, there is another thread here in the electronics section for adding a backup camera that will play on the PCM screen. A place in Miami sells the kit which includes the camera and wiring. I've installed it but haven't coded it yet. Initially a PIWIS was needed but he just recently added the option to rent out the tool so you can code it yourself. I'll go that route when I get back from my ski trip. And no codes have to be purchased. Check out the thread if interested.
 

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That is a heck of a thread and I am trying to sort this out step by step. A bit much for my small head. You guys are light years ahead of me.
Here is my case: CRD31 with standard audio (no SPP), bluetooth and I got my phone working on CDR. Not sure about USB as I never tried using it.
What I want is NAV and front camera later.

I was planning on doing this by stages. It seems some have said just getting and swapping the CDR with the PCM 3.1 should make you keep everything you got with CDR. that suits me but some posts read as if it ain't so.

So let say I want just to put a PCM 3.1 and keep my bluetooth phone connection and everything I have with CDR working I would need the additional following mods:
1. Install the 2nd Microphone with cable. If I dont do that I lose my phone communication.
2. install a 2 channel external amps as I would lose the internal amp from CDR

Only then would I be at parity with CDR with the NAV enabler PCM unit as my next phase. Am I getting this right? thks
 

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You've got a good handle on the swap. It will help to go back and read all the posts again, I have to just to refresh my memory occasionally. My BT didn't work without a new code after installing the PCM even though some didn't experience this. However, my USB worked fine without a code and I didn't have it originally. You can put the NAV antenna in the mirror housing like OEM or mount one on the cowl like I did. The guys that have done this are ready to help you with specifics should you need it.
 

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Hi CountachQV (and any others) - I'm UK based but, with help from the thread and members here, including from Mitch but with particular thanks to John Aplin (who helped me offline, as well as through his posts here) I have also carried out the conversion. I got snagged-up in two particular areas that you might want to know about. Anyway, a number of tips.

Firstly, make sure you get the right type of PCM 3.1. One from a 981 Boxster/Cayman or 991 will do (they are virtually identical). As you're US based, get one that is US specific (the small rectangular label on the side of the unit will tell you if the unit is for the US or is world-wide spec). By looking at the larger label on the underside of the PCM you can see the spec of the unit - to check that it has nav (remember that there is a PCM version without!), whether there is a telephone module needed (you don't particularly need this; all PCMs have inbuilt BT capability) and - importantly - whether there is a digital/XM tuner built in as well as FM. I'll come back to this... Be aware also that PCMs built after November 2011 (I think that's the date; it's around then) have a built-in hard drive to give you Jukebox capability, so all other things being equal, these later units are a better bet than the earlier ones; the build date is also shown on the smaller label. As you probably know, PCM's are advertised on eBay but a tip is also to look for 981s and 991s that are being broken after accident damage - so hunt out written-off cars and talk directly with breaker yards (online) as well as look on eBay.

Physically fitting the unit is straightforward, as per the notes here. You've picked-up on the need for two mics and the options of GPS antenna placement. You can choose whether or not to hook up the full USB socket or just stick with the AUX as per the standard car. In my experience, without coding you will end up with just FM radio, CD and USB capability; any other functionality (so BT phone and streaming, navigation, digital/XM radio, etc) will be blocked after a few minutes of operation unless the car/unit is recoded.

In relation to coding I had simply first class support from the chap I bought my codes from, Nikita, who is based it seems in Russia. Clear pricing, totally reliable and very, very quick (when I needed an additional code he sent it by return of mail even before I had made payment via PayPal). Happy to recommend him and to supply his contact details via PM. Once you have the codes, your dealer will need to enter them using PIWIS and activate them for the car; it seems to be a bit of a two-way process with the car initially rejecting the new components until it's been told that everything's OK. A bit like a medical transplant op, I guess! The codes are VIN-specific, unique to your car and I ended-up needing a number of codes - one to allow the PCM unit to be recognised and activated (which, from memory, allowed BT phone and streaming to come back), one for navigation (to allow access to your regional maps) and one for the digital/XM radio. Because I wanted everything to look 'factory' I also got the code for the correct 'boot screen' - nothing more embarrasing than being in, say, a Boxster and having a GT3RS screen-logo appear on start up (well, probably having it happen the other way round would be worse).

Now for the two problem areas. And this has taken me ages...

Firstly, radio performance. You'll have read that FM performance is reduced with the retrofit when compared to the full PCM factory fit, even if you fit the full 'FM Diversity Controller' to combine the two antenna feeds into a single wire for plugging in to the back of the PCM. (By the way, wiring-up the 12V power supply to the Diversity Controller from the Quadlock connector on the back of the PCM is virtually impossible to figure-out and do until you know how, then it's all very straightforward - again I can help if anyone's stuck, including providing the part number for the power-supply lead that is needed and which is nigh-impossible to uncover, even from Porsche). But in my experience, performance on FM is reduced to being only borderline acceptable, particularly in traffic or city environments. That said, another chap (hi Craig!) based in South Africa has gone down this route and reports that everything is fine, so you take your chances!

Anyway, I finally managed to get to the bottom of this. It transpires that factory-fit PCM uses an FM diversity system which relies on four antennas that are part of the factory spec - two located (embedded) in the LH of the windscreen and two on the RHS (you can see the antennas embedded in the glass, close to the A-posts) - and the signals from each pair of these antennas are routed to the PCM firstly through an Antenna Amplifiers (there are two of them in PCM spec cars, one mounted on each of the LH and RH A-posts respectively) to the Diversity Controller and then on to the single antenna input socket (a Fakra socket) on the back of PCM. With base CDR cars, there is only one pair of antennas which are embedded in the RH of the windscreen, and the signals from this pair are routed directly to the CRD head unit through a single (and unique, base spec-specific) Antenna Amplifier that is mounted on the RH A-post only. So essentially when you retrofit a PCM you are trying to make it work through a different antenna configuration (only two antennas and a single, base spec specific amplifier) from the system that it was designed to work with (two pairs of antennas, each with its own dedicated amplifier). No wonder it only sort-of works...

How to work around? Well, short of replacing the windscreen for one with the four antennas and then fitting the two dedicated Antenna Amplifiers (and I have considered this!) I decided to replace the FM-only PCM unit I had bought through eBay with another one, again sourced through eBay, that included the digital tuner (DAB) module. I then just added a simple DAB screen-mounted antenna and all was well; a 30 minute installation to get perfect radio after months (on and off) of working to perfect the FM installation. I know that you don't have DAB in the States but you do have satellite/XM - my tip is to make sure you go for it!

And then the final area of concern... When converting from base CDR (which has amplification built-in to the head unit), be aware that the audio output from the PCM is essentially low-level (line-level) and probably peaks at about 4V or 5V max. So it won't properly drive a standard OEM upgdrade/aftermarket audio amp and you need to find an amp that will take line-level (low-level) inputs. I used a Hertz D-Power 4 amp; I know that Jon Aplin used a BLAM unit - others are available, of course. But here's the thing; although I haven't managed to get formal confirmation, it seems that the audio output from the PCM is not 'flat' and so, by simply amplifying that and feeding it through the standard speakers, the results are a bit 'meh'. Listenable - but only just. Remember that the PCM units are usually connected either to a SPP (ASK) amplifier, or to a Bose amp, or to a Burmester amp and I suspect (actually, I believe) that each of these amps also contains some signal processing capability (built-in eq) so that the output from the amp is flat (flatish - you get my drift) even though the input to it, from the PCM, is far from that.

How to fix - well, I have finally nailed this just in the past few days; I added a small DSP processor (an Axton A500 DSP - look it up) that sits next to the amp and processes the signals from the PCM before they go in to the power amp. This unit has a 7-band equaliser built in and also some time alignment capability (like magic - really effective) and it is all worked via BT from your phone - very neat. At last, I seem to have high quality sound!

A final, final point about speakers and amplifiers. If you have a base or SPP install then be aware that the front tweeters are wired in parallel to the door mounted woofers (if you have base audio only) or to the door mounted mids (if you have SPP) and this means that they present a load of only 2 ohms to the amp (each speaker has a nominal 4 ohm impedance; when wired in parallel they combine to produce a 2 ohm load) so you need to make sure that your chosen power amp is rated to be safe (ie: stable and not overheat or trip-out) down to 2 ohms. Some amps are, but in my experience most aren't - so choose carefully.

Good luck with this. The thread here was a great help to me and I do hope that these further notes wil help you and others embarking on this really worthwhile upgrade route.

James
 

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James, great info you've shared, those with the base sound system should benefit tremendously from your research. My FM reception is still sometimes lacking, but I use the XM radio about 95% of the time anyway so I rarely notice. I wish there were a way to incorporate an antenna booster without having to run wires to the A pillars and install them there. I still marvel at how Porsche customizes almost every single car and nothing is in one that isn't used, no extra pigtails, etc. Seems very costly but then they don't worry about that since we pay for their inefficiencies.
 

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Hi Mitch

Thanks for the appreciation! But just one point; I think you might be confusing the location of the Antenna Amplifier?

Even the base CDR spec cars have one antenna amplifier which is the box that's mounted behind (inside) the A-post trim, fixed to the steel A-post itself. The additional part that is added when instaling PCM is the Diversity Controller; this effectively manages the aerial diversity functionality as an external, stand alone box (it's pretty small) whereas, with CDR, this functionality is integrated inside the head unit itself.

I know that the Porsche installation instructions say that the Diversity Controller needs to be installed at the base of the A-post and fitted with with new cables, but in reality it can use the existing cables and be located in the centre console area - just as it was in 997 and 987 generation cars. In summary, it is physically straightforward to install the full Diversity Controller into a 981 or 991 in this area, re-using the existing antenna cables that normally feed down to the rear of the PCM.

If you (or anyone else) needs more information, just shout.

James
 

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James, that's very helpful. Do you happen to have the part number handy? I have it somewhere but if you have it readily available it would save some time. If I can mount it anywhere it would seem to make sense to put it close to the PCM. Thanks.
 

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Hi Mitch

Apologies for the delay. So for yourself and anyone else who is interested in fitting the FM Diversity Controller, let me confirm the parts that are required now and I'll post again a bit later with some further notes that will help with the physical installation.

So, the list of parts you will need to fit the Diversity Controller during a retrofit of PCM to a car that was originally fitted with base CDR (or base CDR plus SPP), using the two existing antenna feed wires that run from the A-post mounted Antenna Amplifier is as follows:


1. FM Diversity Controller (sometimes called the Antenna Control Unit): 991.618.122.00
2. Cable to connect FM Diversity Controller to PCM (FM antenna socket): 991.612.016.00
3. Antenna Connector (white) - connects the thicker of the two antenna wires (from the A-post mounted Antenna Amplifier) to the FM Diversity Controller: 991.044.900.98
4. Antenna Connector (grey) - connects the thinner of the two antenna wires (from the A-post mounted Antenna Amplifier) to the FM Diversity Controller: 991.044.900.99
5. Power supply harness (supplies power to both the Diversity Controller without disrupting the power supply to the A-post mounted Antenna Amplifier): 991.044.900.29 (Note: this is the part and part number which is virtually impossible to uncover from anyone!)

So, as I say, I'll post more information later but hope that this helps for now.

James
 

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Right - here we go; this should be of help... It sort of explains, well, quite a lot!

PCM Retrofit Schematic.jpeg

Worth adding that the pieces that are not shown here include:

A. The screen-embedded antennas (they feed into the Antenna Amplifier module)
B. Any digital/DAB/XM audio anntenna connections; they connect separately, via dedicated Fakra sockets, into the rear of the PCM
C. Any Aux or USB connections which also connect separately to the rear of the PCM.

Also worth explaining that the wiring of the power supply harness (item 5) into and out of the Diversity Controller via the 3-pin connector (item 12) needs a bit of mental gymnastics to understand but once understood it's pretty easy. In essence, you have to locate the +12V feed (a thin white wire) from Pin 14 on the Quadlock block at the back of the PCM; in the base CDR spec this wire supplies power only to the A-post mounted Antenna Amplifier. You need to put the new Power Supply Harness (item 5) into the circuit here; one of the two flying leads (the one that is fitted with a terminal which inserts into the Quadlock) in this mini-harness connects to the +12V feed at Pin 14 on the Quadlock and the other of the two flying leads (a bare wire, from memory) then needs to be connected to the disconnected wire that you've just removed (spliced, soldered, joined, whatever). Follow it through on the diagram above and hopefully you'll see how it works; the +12V comes out of Pin 14, is now routed into the Diversity Controller (via the 3-pin connector that is also on the mini harness) and is then looped through to provide power to the Antenna Amplifier. Difficult to explain, but easy once you've got it!

James
 

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Wow, that's a bit more complicated than I first thought. As of right now, I think I'll pass on this, since I use FM very little and I have acceptable reception most of the time anyway. I originally didn't have the diversity windshield with extra antenna, but my windshield (sorry, windscreen for you) had to be replaced recently and they put in the one with the visible wires around the perimeter. I thought the installation would simply require the diversity controller being plugged into the PCM, but your explanation shows quite a lot more than that one item. However, it is very useful info especially for those in Europe and UK where Sat radio is unavailable, or anyone wanting to get the best possible reception from FM broadcasts. This basically takes the place of the dual-to-single wire I had to install on my PCM since the original CDR-31 unit was different.
 

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Can anyone help me, i have everything. But i need help wiring the amp. what pins on the quadlock are the speaker wires so i can wire them directly to the amp.
 

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Hi all

I’m about to attempt this and just collecting necessary parts. Have found a PCM unit but my car is base CD-R so no amp.

Can anyone point me in the direction of the easiest way of adding one?

I have found a quadlock adapter with speaker outputs like this one, does this look right?

https://incartec.co.uk/product/10-795-2

Where is the best place to tap power, ground, remote for the Amp?

Many thanks in advance


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

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Hi all

I’m about to attempt this and just collecting necessary parts. Have found a PCM unit but my car is base CD-R so no amp.

Can anyone point me in the direction of the easiest way of adding one?

I have found a quadlock adapter with speaker outputs like this one, does this look right?

https://incartec.co.uk/product/10-795-2

Where is the best place to tap power, ground, remote for the Amp?

Many thanks in advance


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro

Hi - I see you're UK based, as I am, and I'm happy to help if you wish. I'll PM you on here.

I guess you've read back through this thread so you'll have found that most of the important points of the PCM and antenna installations are covered (but not so much on aftermarket power amp fitment). I now have a set of the 'pukka' retrofit instructions (for 'pukka' read Porsche Tequipment) which makes the PCM and antenna system side of things much more straightforward and short-cuts all of the detective work, trial and error and reverse-engineering that some of us undertook earlier.

Turning to your questions about power-amp installation, where we're much more on our own...

Yes, that (or a similar) 'T' or 'Y' harness will help to make a clean breakout from the back of the PCM down to the power amp. You will get low-level signals from the PCM pre-outs as inputs to the power amp and high-level (amplified) signals as outputs from the amp being fed back to the door and dash (tweeter) speakers. Out of interest, what type of power amp are you using?

You can add a wire to the breakout element for 'remote' - you need to pick-up on Pin 14 out of the back of the PCM Quadlock - you can tap into the white lead that you will have installed already to Pin 14 as part of the Diversity Controller wiring (assuming you have done that) but make sure you get it spliced in at the right point (between the PCM and the Diversity Controller, not after the DC).

Assuming that you're putting the power amp under the driver (RHS) seat you'll find that there's a proper earth point (threaded stud) in that area - so all straightforward.

As for power, you have two options. Best would be to run a properly protected (fused and shielded) power cable directly from the battery, through the firewall and down to the underseat area. However, you can also tap into a spare feed from the back of the fusebox that is mounted in the driver side (RH) outboard footwell/wheelwell area. Depending on your car type, you will need to work out which feeds are unused and apropriately rated but this is easy to do. Beware, though, that you should only go this route if your power amp isn't too power hungry, as 15 amps or so is really the maximum you might want to take through the fusebox.

Hope that helps.

More generally, if you post up what type of car you're working on (981? 991? model type, etc) that will help us to get you the best information. And great that you have sourced a PCM but are you sure it's compatible with your vehicle? The large rectangular label on the underside will help there, if you want advice on that aspect. And, finally, are you sticking with FM radio only (in which case you have to expect some reduction in performance, even using the DC unit and so on) or have you got a PCM with DAB built-in, which makes things much better in my experience.

James
 
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