Radio Head Unit question - Mercedes Benz SLK Forum

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#1 Old 04-18-2013
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Radio Head Unit question

I have an '01 SLK230. I bought it with an aftermarket radio head installed. i am leaning towards replacing it mainly because the cheap JVC unit in it does not have cell phone compadability which the original unit did. i dont want to put the old R170 unit back in becuase it does not have an MP3 jack for my ipod, so i want to know if anyone has replaced it with an aftermarket unit that fits and will utilize the hands free mic built in the vehicle, and which unit they used. also can i swap with the R171 unit (the one without Navigation)?

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#2 Old 04-18-2013
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Go to beckerautosound.com they can give (sell) you everything you want in an original looking radio that is plug and play.
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#3 Old 05-26-2013
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Or you can do what I just did following the path of others on this post.
I bought a $5 cassette adapter and followed the instructions I found here.
I made my own radio keys out of some thin (1 mm filed down a tad) stiffer plastic just wide enough to fit the slots with 45 degree ends about 3"long. The long side goes to the outside and they need to be pushed in well. You will feel the clips release.
The radio slipped out fine. I padded everything on the consul and gear shift before I did this in case I dropped it or a tool.
I turned it on to Tape and when the door was open I shut it off.
I took the radio top off by removing the 2 screws.
I threaded the wire and connector through the slot, put the cassette in position to load and then pushed the power on to the radio and pressed the cassette adapter all the way in while making sure to feed the wire over the cassette so it did not jam. When in position I shut it off again.
The wire needed to go to the right around the cassette holder because the latch for the door is on the left. Inside the radio I fed it down the right side, across the back and after easing the case screw on the outside rear left corner I was able to feed the wire out the back through an opening right at the top corner of the back of the case. I tightened the case screw and reinstalled the cover.
I fished the wire with my string trimmer plastic cord by first pushing it up from the foot well on the passenger side into the space behind the radio in the IP, taped the wire to it and pulled it down to the bottom of the center consul in the passenger foot well. I tucked it up under the consul.
The wire was short so I adapted 3.5 mm male to male cord I had to male to female for $2 at the local used electronics store. It was about 24" long.
That was the hardest part as the wires are fine and too much heat soldering created a short.
I drilled an 11/16" hole tight in the right hand corner of the compartment right behind the cigarette lighter which has the sliding lid after removing the pad at the bottom and again using plastic string trimmer cord fished a string to pull the male end into the compartment. I connected the two cables and taped the connection tight and tucked it up under the consul as well. The pad went back in without alteration.
The iPod sounds great and if it needs charging the lighter USB adapter is right there. Nothing is visible.

Total time was 40 minutes but half of that was fiddling around adapting the cable I had. I should have spent $6 and go a male to female cable and the whole thing would have taken 20 minutes.
You do have to run the iPod from the iPod itself with the radio in Tape mode but life is never perfect. Then again I didn't spend a fortune either.
Between this and my Parrott Minikit+ I haven't spent $100 getting all sound capabilities and hands free phone of sound quality to match my E350.
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