Bluetooth Audio to Stock Saturn Radio

Saturn Radio DisplaySeveral years ago I received an iPod Touch for Christmas and I wanted a better way to get the audio from the device to my car’s stereo.  In the past I have used FM transmitters that worked pretty well, but the audio quality can be poor and you have to adjust the transmit frequency when traveling between radio markets.

I found iSimple’s iPod2Car adapter.  It emulates a factory CD Changer for a bunch of different radios from a variety of manufactures.  The device unlocks the auxiliary audio input for the radio and passes the control commands from the radio back to the iPod.  The setup worked for several years with my iPod, allowing me to enjoy my music collection as well as podcasts and audiobooks in my car.  After I bought my first Android phone I needed a way to connect it to my car to enjoy streaming Internet radio.  A simple iPod Bluetooth adapter hidden behind a cup holder has worked very well, it passes the audio to my car stereo as well the control commands back to my Android device.

I may have the only Saturn S-Series with a factory radio with Bluetooth audio input.

The Periferal iPod2Car box and excess iPod Cable hidden behind the climate control and below the stereo.

The Peripheral iPod2Car box and excess iPod Cable hidden behind the climate control and below the stereo.  The iPod cable is ran behind the console to the cupholder where the Bluetooth Dongle is attached and the excess cable is hidden underneath the stereo.

 

I used female jumper connectors that are usually used to connect pin headers  on PCBs.  They provide a tight fit on the pins from the stereo and have been able to withstand ~70,000 miles of abuse without any issues.

I used female jumper connectors that are usually used to connect pin headers on PCBs. They provide a tight fit on the pins from the stereo and have been able to withstand about 70,000 miles of abuse without any issues.

Pinout of the stock CD Player for the Saturn S-Series.  The iPod to car needs to be spliced to the power for the radio.

Pinout of the stock CD Player for the Saturn S-Series. The iPod to car needs to be spliced to the power for the radio.

The iPod to Bluetooth adapter attached behind the cupholder, where the phone usually is while driving.  The rage of the dongle is pretty good, I have been able to connect to my car in the parking lot around 20 feet away.

The iPod to Bluetooth adapter attached behind the cupholder, where the phone usually is while driving. The rage of the dongle is pretty good, I have been able to connect to my car in the parking lot around 20 feet away.

 

 

One thought on “Bluetooth Audio to Stock Saturn Radio

  1. Ian

    Just wanted to throw out a thanks for some of the info here. I was trying to add an iSimple Aux2Car box to my 97 SW2, and since I didn’t have the CD changer cable I was going to have to wire it in manually like you did. However, the manual didn’t tell me what wires from the harness get connected to which pins on the back, except to say that the Yellow wire was for constant +12V – more on that in a sec.

    Finding this allowed me to look up the instruction manual for the iPod2Car box, which it appears uses the same basic harness. That manual *did* list the correct connections, and let me get the box hooked up. And that yellow +12V wire listed in the manual? Turns out that’s actually the Data wire, and the ORANGE wire is for power. m(

    One quick note: My SW2 has a Tape Deck + EQ, rather than the CD player, which may be the differences. It could also just be the year. My radio doesn’t have pin 17 on the back, and the CD changer data line appeared to be pin 16, rather than 15. In case anyone else finds this post and uses it.

    Here’s the pinout in case anyone else needs it:
    Yellow: Data, Pin 16
    Black: Audio Common, Pin 12
    Blue: Audio Left, Pin 11
    Red: Audio Right, Pin 13
    Orange: +12V, Splice to Pin 5 (or run a fused wire from the battery)
    Brown: Ground, Splice to Pin 7 (or ground to chassis)
    White: Unused, if present.

    Reply

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