Scion tC Aux Stereo Jack Project
To connect an iPod to a Scion for cheap.


I got a new iPod Nano for Christmas so I naturally wanted to use it in my car. I saw the prices of full aftermarket adaptors which power the iPod through the cradle jack, and link it into the stereo, and I knew there was probably a cheaper way to go for the same end effect. Well here's how I did it myself (DIY) for $31 dollars. Hope this guide helps others out there.

Table of Contents

Parts and Cost:

Block Diagram:
                      
Install Concept:

Wanted an auxillary 3.5mm Stereo jack near the cigarette lighter power socket in the center console bin (the big bin) to play iPod music through my car stereo. I planned on powering the iPod from that power socket, and then running a short patch cable for audio to the convenient jack.

Install Notes:

Pictures of Install (Click pictures for larger version):

Shot of the Scion tC center console being taken apart. I know I'd have liked to see how to remove all of the console pieces with pictures before I started tearing into the thing. Note, this is actually a shot of me putting it back together. You have to remove the shifter knob to remove this piece.
Another shot of the console, with the piece that goes around the shifter removed. There is tons of room to work both here and also behind the radio. Shifter knob is on here because I was driving around with all of the console parts removed for a while while procrastinating putting a hole into my nice car.
Patch cable which went inside the car (behind the scenes). It has RCA jacks which connect to the DF-TOY box, and then the panel mount stereo jack is on the other end. I had to solder this cable specially, of course.

This is a close up of the patch with the panel mount jack. The soldering was easy - 3 condutors total. Ground, left signal, and right signal. The ground is the shielding around the insullated conductors (two grounds, one from each RCA plug, which you should tie together). The left signal is the white RCA, the right signal is the red RCA. As for which pin on the stereo jack is right and left, I got them mixed up. Damn. Oh well, just had to plug red into white, and white into red on the DF-Toy. I produced an mp3 to play on the iPod to test just this. The low tone is for the left channel, and the high tone is the right channel. You don't have to have a special test mp3 for this though. Just go into the audio options in the head unit (HU) and balance all the way right, and you should only hear from the right speakers (duh).

Note the jack is fully housed. This was a buck, but hard to find. Gotta go to a semi-serious electronics store to find this.

Shot of the special connector which patches the DF-Toy box into the HU.
Another shot of the DF-Toy. This thing spoofs a CD Changer, but just as one long track. You will still adjust songs, etc, using the iPod click wheel.
I didn't want to throw holes in to mount the DF-Toy so I got these sticky foam pads. Hope it holds, and if not, no big. I'll just mount with screws when the rattling gets to be too much.
f Me throwing a hole into the bin. I felt around to find just the right spot. The felt on the inside of the bin gave me some trouble as it got all in the threading on the stereo jack. Be sure to just score around the hole after you drill with a utility blade.
Here's a shot of where I ran the patch cable connecting the HU to DF-Toy. Down the right side of the compartment seems best as it will not interfere with the parking break or shifter. SORRY but no shot of the back of the HU to show you where the DF-Toy patch cable plugs in. It's a connector that was, for me, previously unoccupied. There were TWO connectors out of the DF-Toy. One fits my Scion tC, and all Toyotas from 2003 and after, and the other fits Toyotas from earlier years (not sure exactly which years). I just cable tied that one up (didn't plug it in). The USA Spec provided cable for this was plenty long to get all the way back to the bin. I mounted the DF-Toy box inside the car (beneath the console, hidden, of course). If you know where the latch is to open the bin's lid, I just fit the box into the space just below that using the 3M foam sticky squares pictured above.
The money shot sans Belkin kit. Road tested it just now and it works fine. No hums, no glitches over potholes. Good luck if you're trying this at home. I don't take ANY liability for what you do to your car or yourself if you follow my lead on this, but I might give you tips if you email me.
(no picture yet) Final shot with Belkin Auto Kit (Coming soon)

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