Author Topic: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?  (Read 1366 times)

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Offline vitesse

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Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« on: April 30, 2018, 03:21:57 pm »
I did several searches but could not find any threads previously discussing Pumpkin Android head units. Apart from the off-putting silly brand name they seem to have some attractive products. I did start getting bits together to do a Nexus 7 mod but I have gone off the idea. I do have a double DIN replacement fascia.

I was wondering if anyone here has experience of Pumpkin Android installations? I want to fit a reversing camera, use streaming music (Deezer), Internet radio and Waze satnav. I'll probably use a USB mobile data dongle for Internet connectivity. Removing the factory (Bose) unit will sacrifice the 6 CD changer but I've hardly used it anyway. What I'm not sure about his how the steering controls and Bluetooth phone connectivity will be affected.

This is for a 2008 (new shape) 2.5 Sport.

Offline vitesse

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #1 on: May 01, 2018, 04:32:06 pm »
Now I have done a little more research I have discovered an Eonon solution that looks promising:

http://www.eonon.co.uk/Android-Car-Stereo/Car-Specific-GPS/Mazda-6-2009-2012-Android-7-1-Head-Unit-8-Inch-Widescreen-GPS-Navigation-2GB-RAM-Quad-Core-Double-Din-Car-Radio-FM-Receiver.html

Again - not much discussion when searching about this here on the forum.

Offline fe_man2000

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #2 on: June 21, 2018, 03:54:10 pm »
Which did you go for in the end.  I am just about to buy a 2nd Gen Sport (if I can find one) and want to do a similar update to the stereo.

I have read some opinons about the radio being poor in some of these chinese andriod head units so its somthing to check on first- I just want FM radio, sat nav and usb media playback while retaining the steering wheel controls of course.

I have also seen some mention on xtrons but little to recommend one brand over the other.

Cheers

Offline aeroadster

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #3 on: June 22, 2018, 11:22:21 am »
You'll find that Xtrons, Eonon and Joyride and many other Chinese based resellers are in fact selling the same product.

I've seen some of the older Eonon and Xtrons units first hand and their FM/MW receivers are pretty good.

Like with all things to do with radio reception, you are going to be restricted to the quality of your own aerial.  I've had a chance to fit and compare different aerials over the last 25+ years of owning and working on cars, and sometimes you just need to install a higher quality powered roof mounted aerial (not passive).  In the past I've mostly used Blaupunkt aerials.

My GH estate employs an integrated window aerial in the rear estate quarter window.  It's basic and not very good with FM or MW broadcasts.  However, I prefer DAB on my Pioneer F70DAB and I used a simple stick on Blaupunkt powered window aerial as I had it lying around.  Most of the places I've been to across the UK have pretty good DAB reception so I'm not going to put a roof mounted one on.  I admit, I have noticed one or two flat spots along the M1 and A1, but losing reception for 3 seconds as I whizz by isn't the end of the earth for me.

I have thought about fitting a shark fin type too, but a lot of these units just look nice and have underwhelming performance.  If I every get more time to assess them, I'd buy a bunch and do it to avoid being caught out by the vast number of fake reviews or subjective reviews I see online.

I'm likely to sell my Pioneer unit as I have a Bose amp setup in mine already that will compensate and improve upon what the Xtrons unit can output.  I'd prefer to have an Android unit now the quality, performance and 8.0 user interface is better for my needs.  I'm considering this unit.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SeL3MTCl7ck


I'm watching this on eBay to give me a guide as to how much I might get:
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Pioneer-AVIC-F70DAB-High-end-navi-AppleCarPlay-Android-Auto-Bluetooth-DAB/173371122575?hash=item285db9638f:g:jcQAAOSw~BhbKCy8

Offline fe_man2000

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #4 on: June 28, 2018, 10:02:42 pm »
Thats good advice about the aerials - But I fitted a cheap chinese stereo last year in another car and using the same aerial it went from basically perfect to lousy, also due to the poor electronics used there was a slight eletric buzz picked up all the time, even with the volume at zero and the engine off so I am cautious when it comes to chinese electronics , there not all like that I am sure but picking the good stuff from the bad is tricky. But on the other hand the bring together maybe features at prices that cannot be ignored.

One thing I am struggling with regarding an android unit is its functions without internet connection.  Google maps for instance, I know you can download a section of maps to work offline but its only a certain distance it can cover, when I use the sat nav I am normally on the other side of the country so it would be no use  - am I supposed to link to my phone and use its data all the time or buy a 3g/4g dongle ? or am I missing something as I dont like the idea of paying to use my satnav.

cheers

Offline fe_man2000

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #5 on: June 28, 2018, 10:57:07 pm »
out of interest anyone seen anything or used the mazda 6 specific  EONON GA8198

http://www.eonon.co.uk/Android-Car-Stereo/Car-Specific-GPS/Mazda-6-2009-2012-Android-7-1-Head-Unit-8-Inch-Widescreen-GPS-Navigation-2GB-RAM-Quad-Core-Double-Din-Car-Radio-FM-Receiver.html?Catype=1

Comes in Bose and non-Bose versions, looks pretty good on paper - would love to hear from anyone with one.

Offline aeroadster

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2018, 10:09:14 pm »
Thats good advice about the aerials - But I fitted a cheap chinese stereo last year in another car and using the same aerial it went from basically perfect to lousy, also due to the poor electronics used there was a slight eletric buzz picked up all the time, even with the volume at zero and the engine off so I am cautious when it comes to chinese electronics , there not all like that I am sure but picking the good stuff from the bad is tricky. But on the other hand the bring together maybe features at prices that cannot be ignored.

One thing I am struggling with regarding an android unit is its functions without internet connection.  Google maps for instance, I know you can download a section of maps to work offline but its only a certain distance it can cover, when I use the sat nav I am normally on the other side of the country so it would be no use  - am I supposed to link to my phone and use its data all the time or buy a 3g/4g dongle ? or am I missing something as I dont like the idea of paying to use my satnav.

cheers

Sounds like the built-in tuner was of a very poor quality.

In order for some of these modern android units to access the internet, there's a number of options:
1. Tethering to your phone by Bluetooth or direct Wi-Fi
2. Buying a 3G/4G donglee and inserting your own separate sim card
3. Tethering your phone directly using a USB cable

You can also rely Android Auto, which can used the Maps/Navigation feature from your phone but present it on the stereo screen.

On your other point, the Android 7.1 units that are purposed built for the Mazda, I would not recommend them unless they are updated with the latest CPUs, 4Gb memory and 32Gb ROMs running Android 8, as there's a massive difference in performance.

The Android 8 models (that unfortunately aren't custom designed for the Mazda 6), bt are standard double din fitments have a much slicker interface and allow you to run two apps side by side on the same screen e.g. radio and navigation, so you don't have to flick from one app to the other.  The faster CPUs and greater memory add to that super fast start up and the difference in performance is like night and day.  There's roughly a £100 difference, but in my opinion its worth it.

This is why I still recommend buying a fascia to insert a double din unit in.  It takes about 10minutes to fit one in and attach the double din stereo.

Offline fe_man2000

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2018, 10:13:04 am »
I agree with you double din fascia and a branded stereo makes me feel happier.  For my needs Sat Nav gets used a few times a year, but the radio and media playback is everyday.  I think a double din fascia and cheapish Android Auto compatible unit from pioneer/ Sony/ kenwood would be better for my needs, they seem to come in at between £250-350 depending on what brand + £100 for the fascia and adapters (I have Bose Amp so it appears to cost a bit more)

Offline Cee-Jay-Cee

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2018, 02:41:22 pm »
I fitted an Ownice C500 unit in my 2010 Mazda 6. Radio reception is now better than with the factory headunit. Most steering controls are retained but you do lose the use of the telephone buttons as they are connected to the Bluetooth unit which became redundant once the factory headunit was removed. The C500 has an octa-core processor and 2GB RAM with 32GB ROM and its running android 6 which works very well and without issues.

I have a reversing camera hooked up to it (the camera is from SinoSmart) and it works more or less instantaneous once reverse is engaged even when the unit hasn't fully booted up. This has been a problem on other units and the quad-core version of the C500 where the unit had to be fully booted (30+ seconds) before the camera would register.

The default sat nav program is iGo which I find excellent, it covers the full of Europe and is bang up to date. You can of course load on Google maps or any other app but as iGo works so well (IMO) I don't see the need.

I also have an apple carplay dongle but only use it when I'm on long journeys. The default Bluetooth app works reasonably well with my phone and I haven't experienced any problems with it yet.

I have a 64gb SD card hooked up to one of the 3 USB ports for my music.

The C500 also has a SIM slot and supports 4G but I cant get a duplicate SIM on my own phone account and so would need a new SIm and new number which I couldn't be bothered with. I have an 'All You Can Eat' data plan and so I can tether to my phone as often and for as long as I like.

Overall I'm very pleased with the unit, it looks the part has a piano black surround which matches the fascia trim around the heater controls etc etc It also has two knobs (volume and tuning/forward/back) which was a must for me as I don't want to have to look at the unit to find the button to press if I need to turn the volume down in a hurry.

Offline benjibarnicals

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Re: Pumpkin Android Universal audio head units?
« Reply #9 on: October 22, 2018, 09:54:33 am »
Hi all,

Not to dredge up an old(ish) thread, I'm new here, but, I've got the EONON GA8198 unit mentioned above. And have had no end of issues with it, borderline RMA'ing it back.

  • You can't tether your iPhone (I think you might be able with Android, however).
  • If you use a 3g/4g Dongle via USB you get a horrible old-school mobile next to speak whine coming through the speakers, you know the sound, when you here blips/pops and wines like modems used to!
  • There is a hiss as soon as a track/sound is output, if you mute the radio you don't hear it, but as soon as a CD, Radio, MP3 (via its Music app) starts playing you'll hear a fairly quiet hiss, this varies with the volume you set.
  • The unit is slow, you can't use Google Maps, for instance, and run Music playing in the background without the maps being sluggish, I've not tried iGo but will give this a try.
  • It is multi-tasking and you can run apps side by side but not all apps support this and it does affect the head unit performance.
  • You can't use your steering wheel telephone buttons (if you have it on your model) with the BT telephone functionality on the head unit. However, volume/track controls work.
  • If you set up a custom equaliser/fader-balance using their Amplifier app resets your speaker balance/fader settings randomly, I usually find this happening when I get in the car in the morning, sometimes it'll be ok, sometimes not. Very odd!
  • Both the FM and DAB reception is poor, using the built-in aerial my car came with, its FM pickup is worse than the Mazda head unit. I haven't tried aftermarket ariels (except using Eonons supplied DAB aerial).
  • If you want DAB you need to buy their external DAB unit, about the size of 2packs of 20cigs stacked on top of each other. It's a chunky unit so you need to find some space at the back of the radio to put it. The DAB app on the radio is shockingly poor, while it works, it's interface is terrible. You can't preset stations, store them, if a station transmits text it'll get cut off from displaying, the font is very poor. I've looked for alternatives but not found anything that would work.

Saying this, I still use the unit as for now, although I don't listen to the radio much anymore, it works, though I tend to play my own music from MicroSD card (despite the hiss), turn it up loud enough and you can just about ignore it!

I'm using this on a 2010 Sport, with Bose, and it works as intended, however, I do find the rear speakers very quiet (though this might be as the rears are used via the Bose amp? Not sure about this).

I wouldn't buy this unit again.