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Hey everybody!

I've been using SaabCentral as a resource for my project and I thought it might be interesting enough to post about. I'm not yet done but here's the plan:

As you know it's next to impossible to replace a Saab radio with an aftermarket unit, at least my year and there about. But I found this unit made by Kenwood that uses the Auxiliary input to add hardwired Sirius, Bluetooth, a USB port that supports all kinds of memory sticks, iPod and Zune (yes Zune) as well as another aux port. It supplies info through a small 5 line display and its controlled by a multi-function knob. The modules hide away and voila the Saab has almost state of the art audio features.



I ordered the pre-wire harness 375 or whatever its called in the States and found that it would supply the unit with power and when I'm finished the built in microphone(s). Although it was difficult to get to, I was able to cut (yikes!) the auxiliary cable and tap into it (hard wired) to feed the stereo. When I'm finished I'm going to re-attach the aux jack to the auxilliary in on the Kenwood so as not to lose that functionality.

Although I had a Sirius radio, it sat up on the windshield which isn't the slickest look. The new install I did a better job routing the antenna cable and the new unit is up and running.

So my issues are few but important. First, I'm having a hard time fitting everything in the center console. The A300 fits but then there's the SCC1 Sirius radio and the Bluetooth module and while they're small, there's not a lot of room left. So that's a problem - any ideas?

Next issue is the mounting of the controller and the display. There's very little space left on the dashboard to fit anything and make it look okay. I'd like it to look quasi-OEM but I'd settle for functional. I'm thinking it could go where the On-Star buttons would be (if I had them) but it's a little tall for the space. Anybody have a better spot? How about the knob?

Finally, and this is way down on the list, the persistant accessory power issue: when you shut off the car and leave the key in the ignition, the stereo will keep playing but apparently Saab didn't feel the need to power that hands-free harness in the same way. The solution I came up with was to find and accessory that stays powered (the radio won't work by the way) and tap in with a relay (a switch activated by powering another, separate circuit). Then I could wire the A300 to a constant power source and the relay would kill the voltage when the accessory powers down. Or maybe a hardwired switch ;) Not really as critical.

So the upshot for anybody considering this piece of kit is that the sound and function are great. Even without the parts all permanently mounted I've found that the phone works great (Parrot makes the interface for Kenwood by the way) the USB player sounds terrific playing MP3s from a thumb drive the size of my thumb and Sirius works like a great stand-alone player and has all the info displayed on the multiline screen.

I hope this is interesting to someone out there and if so, please post! I don't know how great picts would be but I'll furnish some if anyone is interested. Please let me know your thoughts and thanks to all who have published wiring diagrams - I couldn't have gotten this far without the resource!

Thanks,
The Flipper
 
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