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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-21-2012, 07:37 AM Thread Starter
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2012 base stereo options?

I'm a bit confused about the options out there for a head unit. In particular, what limitations/options are out there that use the existing wiring for USB, satellite, etc.

I have a 2012 base on which I predominately play music from a tiny USB drive plugged into the column between the driver and passenger, Pandora over bluetooth, or XM through an external unit. The bluetooth and USB sounds much better than the XM repeater, so I am considering swapping for a new head unit that has satellite built in. I don't need/want any navigation or video.

If I buy the RAV4 Limited radio off eBay can I just swap it with the existing radio? Is the wiring for satellite included in the base? Will the USB, etc still work? Any issues with the controls on the steering wheel?

If I buy a 'chinese' head unit off ebay or elsewhere on the Internet will the USB still work and are there gotchas with the 2012 wiring? (I saw a posting that the 2012 wiring was different from the year's previous.)

Last edited by vanstrien; 11-21-2012 at 07:39 AM. Reason: Added question about steering controls
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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-21-2012, 03:25 PM
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The 2012 Limited comes with two HU options: Base and Entune/Nav. It would cost far more than it's worth to upgrade to the Entune option if you have the base stereo. The base stereo in the Limited is the same as that in in your car. Really, the only option is to go third party. There are a number of options out there ranging from the "Chinese units" to just about any manufacturer of aftermarket systems - Pioneer, JVC, Alpine, Kenwood, etc.

As for wiring, the 2012 introduced a 28 pin connector (as apposed to 24, or something like that) that contains the signaling for steering wheel controls, AUX input (not USB though. That is handled via a different connector), Bluetooth mic, and a few other things.

You'll need an antenna adapter. You can also get an adapter that will allow you to retain the center console USB jack with the new HU.

A lot of good info on the site if you search.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-21-2012, 07:18 PM
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I went for the nav system on my 2012 Ltd. so it has the same crummy sound system. I've been looking at options starting with replacing the speakers. The ones I want to use are listed as not fitting by Crutchfield, so I decided to pull out the stock 6.5" drivers and take a look. I was DISGUSTED by what I found. The speakers in my $31,000 car are worth about 3 bucks each. The plastic mounting bracket is also the speaker frame, the cone is cheap paper, the suspension treated cloth, and the magnet is so tiny it barely deflects a compass held nearby. I expected better from Toyota.

The good news is that the Polk MM6501's will fit easily. Once the existing unit is removed, there is a 6.125" diameter hole in the metal with almost 5" of mounting depth clearance. Pretty much any 6-1/2" speaker will fit.

The existing speakers have a foam ring around them that mates with the edge of the 6" diameter plastic port in the door panel. There is then an inch of empty 6" tube behind the grills in the door panel.

The MM6501's are rated at 94dB sensitivity which is about 6dB better than what I expect from the stock units. That will mean effectively the same thing as having 4X as much amplifier power. It remains to be seen how they will handle the stock EQ. One bridge to cross at a time....

2012 V6 4WD Ltd.

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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 11:32 PM
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Can you replace a base 2012 head unit with one of these? New Toyota RAV4 Radio Stereo 6 Disc Changer MP3 CD Player XM Satellite 51874 | eBay
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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 12-23-2012, 12:56 AM
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Originally Posted by MemphisTaco View Post
Can you replace a base 2012 head unit with one of these? New Toyota RAV4 Radio Stereo 6 Disc Changer MP3 CD Player XM Satellite 51874 | eBay
You can, but you will lose Bluetooth and the USB port. It would also require an adapter for the AM/FM antenna, as well as a 24 pin to 28 pin adapter for the steering wheel controls and AUX input.

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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 01-01-2013, 02:01 PM
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Does anyone know if the henhao or other Chinese wince boxes are compatible with the 2012s?
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