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Discussion Starter #1
Information/advices needed:

Currently, I have stock radio with JBL subwoofer (that extra box in the trunk) in my car.
I am thinking about replacing the radio with some Android head unit to bring it closer to year 2020.
I have seen a lot of replacement models available on ebay for the smart 453.
However, most of them say "Do not support JBL"
Has anyone done this before? What are my options?
Thank you

The stock radio part # is A4539003602

Radio front view with bezel removed
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Radio back view
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Discussion Starter #2
Forgot couple close up pictures of the connectors of my radio. Any suggestions, comments, experiences in upgrading this radio with JBL subwoofer?

62506


62507
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Did you try talking to Crutchfield for advice?? They may have some suggestions.
No, as I didn't find anything specific to Smart Fortwo on their web site.
However, I did find many "Android head unit for Smart Fortwo 453" on ebay. Unfortunately, many of them are "not compatible with JBL", whatever it means.
I was hoping to get some advice / suggestion on what to get (or what to avoid).
Thanks anyway.
 

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Well... I can say the one I purchased a long time ago for my 2016 ForTwo said it "supported" the JBL sound system, but I needed to modify the wiring to get signal to the amp under the seat for it to turn on and actually play audio. Wasn't hard to do, really. Only thing I'm not sure about is if the wiring for the actual speaker audio connections coming from the radio differ between the JBL and non-JBL system.
 

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I did find many "Android head unit for Smart Fortwo 453" on ebay. Unfortunately, many of them are "not compatible with JBL", whatever it means.
Good morning,
I believe to my best recollection the compatibility issues you’re experiencing are due to the Ohms difference between the head units you’re finding on EBAY and the JBL Sub. Check to see what your Sub is pushing at, if it’s 2 ohms and the head unit is 4 ohms that will create an issue. Resistance compatibility is a big deal when it comes to pairing out speakers, especially a Sub.
Paula
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Took a chance and ordered a cheap Android Head Unit off ebay. The seller claimed it is compatible based on the pictures of my original radio's plugs. So, at least, the connectors are compatible.
It is relative cheap unit and I can claim a total loss without too much pain. The drawback is that it will take a long time to get here.

Thanks for the info on JBL amplifier and speaker issues. I will check them carefully before hooking them up.
p.s. I have multi meters and solder irons (and not afraid to use them...:)
 

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Be careful buying too cheap of an Android Head Unit...I bought one off eBay and was so frustrated by the slowness and lack of RAM, I bought a newer one with a faster CPU and more RAM and storage (and was able to sell the older one).

What are the specs of the one you bought?
 

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I would go with at least 4GB RAM, 32GB of ROM, and an 8-Core CPU,

The 1GB of RAM and 4-Core CPU in the previous unit I had, wasn't nearly enough.

You might be able to get by with 2GB of RAM.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I do not have high expectation on these Android Head Units. As long as I can get it installed and working with existing setup (JBL amp, speakers, sub-woofer, etc), I would be happy. The only other "must have" item is a rear camera that will display on the unit. Other features will be optional.
Also, I have a 453. The HIZPO unit that you have likely will not be compatible (very good price-point, though). The picture of the connector and the dimension is different from my existing stock radio unit.
Stay tuned.
I will post a picture of my ordered Android Head Unit once I can get my hands on it (anytime soon...:) ) I am in this for the long haul.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Well... I can say the one I purchased a long time ago for my 2016 ForTwo said it "supported" the JBL sound system, but I needed to modify the wiring to get signal to the amp under the seat for it to turn on and actually play audio. Wasn't hard to do, really. Only thing I'm not sure about is if the wiring for the actual speaker audio connections coming from the radio differ between the JBL and non-JBL system.
Do you still remember what wires you need to send to the amp under the seat? I found a head unit on ebay and the seller claims it will work with the Smart's JBL system.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
This is the head unit I ordered online: 9" Android 9.0 Car Stereo Radio GPS Wifi DSP CarPlay OBD SWC Mercedes-Benz Smart | eBay
Android Pie version is supposed to be less of a memory hog, thus 2GB/16GB should be fine.
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It finally arrived couple days ago.
The display trim is all black, not the half-and-half as shown in Ebay listing and it completely covered the original dash opening.

I finally found the time to hook it up to the car yesterday to check it out. As expected, it is not simple plug-and-play.
Original radio's connectors fits nicely into the harness of the head unit (there are lots of wires!) and it powers on and started up without problem.
  • Connected to my WiFi network
  • Detect car door is open (canbus decoder working?)
  • Builtin apps appears to be functional
  • But, no sound is coming out of any speakers! Why am I not surprised? :)
Will start tracking the wire harness this weekend... Let the fun begins
 

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Do you still remember what wires you need to send to the amp under the seat? I found a head unit on ebay and the seller claims it will work with the Smart's JBL system.
I don't remember exactly what wire was which, but if the wiring harness from the radio you bought is anything like the one I did (which it should be), if you compare that to the factory harness you will notice there is one wire on the factory harness that doesn't connect to anything on the radio harness. I just cannibalized a wire with a pin from a different radio harness, attached it to the Remote wire from the new radio harness, and put it in the proper spot so it would connect to that lonely wire.

Alternatively, you could just make a wire jumper to go from the 12v lead at the one side of the connector over to that lonely wire.... But I don't think that's the best thing to do for an extended period of time.

Sent from my Pixel 3 XL using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Stock radio's 20-pin connector
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Plug from Smart - front view
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Plug from Smart - rear view
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Found this pin-out map online that best-match the connector-of-interest. Does anyone know the name for this kind of connector?
62773
 

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Discussion Starter #18
FWIW, the person who posted this video also listed a couple of smart adapter part numbers:
:)
I had checked out that video before. The video is about something different from what I am planning to do.
Those two parts (A4536809403, A4536809403) are cover plates and the adapter is for the antenna.
My Android Head Unit already came with proper antenna adapter.
Thanks anyway.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
One step closer now... :)

After some probing of Smart car side plug:
  • 2 (GRAY) and 3 (WHITE) -- likely FR (front right) speaker -/+ pair
  • 11 (WHITE) and 12 (PINK) -- likely FL (front left) speaker -/+ pair
  • 7 (YELLOW) and 8 (PINK) -- both are switched power
  • 19 (RED) -- 12v constant power
  • 20 (BLACK) -- ground
Here is my educated guess, aka, pure speculation, as I have not trace the wires to the JBL amp to confirm:
  • FR/FL speaker output wires are fed to the JBL amp
  • The JBL amp will, in turn, route the sound to proper speakers
  • One of the switched power pin must be connected to the JBL amp
On to the Android Head Unit's wire harness...
 
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