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Installing Stereo unit in BMW E30

Old 09-03-2016, 10:28 PM
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Installing Stereo unit in BMW E30

Dear Readers,

I am attempting to install a Pioneer DEH 1000 radio unit in my old E30.

I have several issues.

1st I will run through the logistics.

I located the battery lead and I located the ignition switch lead, there is also a dimmer wire for controlling the back light from the head light switch but no place to connect it to the DEH.

The E30 has a left/right fader adjuster above the radio.

I connected the ACC red wire to the 12 volt switch lead

I connected the continuos battery lead to the yellow wire

I ran the two fader speaker leads to the RCA out ports and did not use the 4 sets of leads from the radio for 4 speakers.

I also attached the Blue/white wire to the White antenna wire which is supposed to activate the power amp.

So after wiring it up I had a dim display, no back light. There is no orange wire to attach the dimmer lead to.

There is no sound output, if I turn up the volume as high as it gets I get very weak volume and that its it.

I am hoping some one knows where to find the power amp in this old buggy. I can not locate it. I looked in the places I have read it might be, but its not in the left rear 1/4 panel near the antenna. I can get an amp out of the junk yard.

But it could be the unit is just not working right. Why would it not have backlight on the display?

Ideally I would prefer not to rewire all the speakers from the radio. The antenna is getting activated so I know that wire is switching on.

So either the radio is messed up or the power amp is dead. Im not sure why the amp would not work.

I was hoping I would find someone here who has worked on these Beamers and can find a simple solution.

For starters, where do I find the amp. Its not the version with a CD changer in the trunk. I found a wiring manual for the car and it shows an amp.

If I need a different radio It would be best to find one with a dimmer wire I can connect and if I can get the amp working I need RCA outs,

If someone knows of such a radio I would appreciate it.

Thank you,

conecaster is offline  
Old 09-07-2016, 11:14 PM
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Are you using a wiring harness adapter. It is color coded and will assist you in making sure you have the correct wiring . Your explanation of the current wiring makes it look like you are activating the antenna and not the amp. That would be one reason for the lack of sound.

Did you try following the wiring harness to locate the amp. Sometimes the amp is located just beneath the stereo, and mounted to the floor of the chassis. Did you look under your front seats.
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Old 09-08-2016, 07:10 AM
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Thank you for the reply,

I had to go to the junk yard a few days ago to get some other parts for it and while there I decided to pull the dash on an 85 model E30.

The problem became very clear pulling the dash. The speaker wires attach directly to the fader. There is no amp.

By following the wiring diagram I was led to believe I could use the two line out RCA plugs and turn on the amp through the antenna wire. Not so.

I just ran two channels to the fader off the radio and my rear speakers are working. The fronts have not worked in a long time and I suspect the fader is bad because there is a lot more volume rolling it to one side over the other.

I will bye pass the fader and directly wire all the speaks to the radio. I can use the original speaker wires.

I was able to remove the side panels of the original radio, cut out the sides of the Pioneer so I could mount them on it, and screw them onto the new radio. I had to slightly file away some plastic in the dash opening but I was able to get it to fit and I am able to secure it to the dash using the original locking mechanisms that pop out by rotating an allen head shaft.

I may just buy a newer radio I think the display is to dim on this unit and I think it would be nice to have the ability to use other devices through the radio.

Thank you
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Old 09-08-2016, 11:18 AM
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Happy to hear that you resolved your problem. Happy listening.
huberoy123 is offline  
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