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Aftermarket Radio Upgrade Opinions please

7655 Views 13 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  raine
Greetings all and thanks. Reading these threads has been a big help.

Install is done and one goal is not met. I am happy with what I have so far.

2010 Nissan Frontier LE long bed Crew cab.
Pioneer AVH4200NEX installed. Sounds Great. Integrates with my android just fine.
Using OEM antenna for XM, all good.
Installed and programmed Metra Axxess ASWC-1, latest firmware and confirmed with tech support wiring and programming good. Talked to support twice. They were responsive and seemed very confident. I am 66 years old and have been in tech my whole career. So have some level of understanding.
Did Bluetooth bypass.
Volume up does seek back and volume down does volume up. I tried reversing wires before I called in. That just reversed the wrong results to different controls. Support said all I could do at this point was clean the controls on the steering column. I told them that they worked fine on the OEM setup. They said the OEM setup had much greater tolerance for resistance anomalies from dirty controls. I guess that is possible.

My hope is some of you with experience can give me some feedback.

1. What is your opinion?
2. How do I get to the controls to clean them safely?

1 - 2 of 14 Posts
I had nothing but trouble with 3 different Axxess units and eventually switched out for a PAC unit which has worked flawlessly for over a year (both connected using the same customized Metra harness). I have a Pioneer 4100NEX so pretty much the same setup as you. I think the Axxess stuff is less forgiving of resistance anomalies in the splice points. The PAC unit is manually programmed only, no auto programming option, and I think that helps as well, but that's just a guess.

The Axxess directions describe how to manually program the unit as well, which might help in your case (didn't in mine...) - they should have been included with the unit but if you don't have them you can download them from their web site.
I called Axxess support several times over the course of my issues and their explanation was always the same - it's a resistance issue. The only way to ensure the unit would work would be to solder the relevant wires into my stock harness, and I wasn't willing to cut into the harness on my brand new 700-mile truck, or do anything that I couldn't put back to stock if necessary, especially since I hadn't seen/read/researched anyone else who used Posi-Taps (which I used), or even standard crappy T-splices, having these issues with the unit. And I can safely say that my issue had nothing to do with dirty switch contacts since the truck only had 700 miles on it when I installed the first Axxess unit. For whatever reason the Axxess stuff just didn't want to play nice with my truck.

The PAC unit wires up exactly the same way as the Axxess unit, then you just program it manually. If you have easy access to your Axxess (see what I did there? :D ) then you should have no trouble wiring the PAC in its place and getting it set up. After installation it takes about 5 minutes to program, unless you mess up a step, then you have to start again. But once it's programmed it's done, or at least mine is - as I mentioned before it hasn't hiccuped even once since I installed it well over a year ago, maybe going on 2 years...somewhere in there... I keep mine fairly accessible as well just in case (I had to futz with the Axxess units all the time so I was paranoid about the same with the PAC...) but I haven't touched it since the install. Plus it's less expensive than the Axxess. For me it was the solution to my months-long steering control issues, maybe it would work for you too. Might be worth a shot.
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