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Thread: Android Tablet FM USB Tuner?

  1. #11
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    Hello, just joined this fabulous forum today! I believe I have the ability to do a hardware driver, if I can get ahold of a USB tuner that works under Linux it can be ported to Android. I have been looking for one of these myself, and my only solution was to use a car pc with a Happauge tuner dongle or card... Im still trying to decide if I want to go Android or Windows 7.... But I saw one thread where they have 7" capacitive touch screens, and if it was at all readable in my convertible I think I would lean toward the PC...

    While we are on the subject... automakers radios are kind of basic, but they have years and years of development and improvements... I'm wondering how good an FM tuner (card, dongle, built into a tablet) would actually work compared to a factory radio...

  2. #12
    Maximum Bitrate jmullan99's Avatar
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    Hi. The USB radio stick(s) tend to be poor in car environments. The radio(s) in question are DirectedHD and Visteon. The can be controlled over a serial port.

    I have been searching, and so far, the best (I think) is either a library package that will allow communications via a USB / RS232 adapter, or a bluetooth RS232 adapter. The bluetooth adapter HAS to support DTR signal. From what I see, those tend to round $80-100. The library allows using the serial adapter via USB host mode that Android now supports. And does this without requiring root priviledges.

    That's a quick summary of what I have found so far. I'm not sure if any driver would be required, but a radio application that knows how to talk to these radios, via the com port, is what I think is required.

    Cheers.
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  3. #13
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    Do You Have Any Other Technical Details To Share?

    Quote Originally Posted by jmullan99 View Post
    Hi. The USB radio stick(s) tend to be poor in car environments. The radio(s) in question are DirectedHD and Visteon. The can be controlled over a serial port.

    I have been searching, and so far, the best (I think) is either a library package that will allow communications via a USB / RS232 adapter, or a bluetooth RS232 adapter. The bluetooth adapter HAS to support DTR signal. From what I see, those tend to round $80-100. The library allows using the serial adapter via USB host mode that Android now supports. And does this without requiring root priviledges.

    That's a quick summary of what I have found so far. I'm not sure if any driver would be required, but a radio application that knows how to talk to these radios, via the com port, is what I think is required.

    Cheers.
    Can you post the details of your search? I'm a software and hardware engineer and have all the parts except the FM receiver. I have a working Android 4.0.1 device with a 7" touch screen display currently working via HDMI input from the android device. The audio is something I'm working out as the device's audio is passed through the HDMI connection. I'm trying to figure out a way to either split the digital signal and route that into the speakers with some type of programmable switch for the audio to come from android device or external audio. Not sure yet what my options are, but I'm playing around with the IOIO board being controlled by the Android device through a custom built app. Any suggestions on an AMP and wiring? I'm putting it in a 2003 Infiniti G35 Coupe with the Double DIN expansion from Metra for separating the radio from the A/C control.

    I suppose I could just hook up the video to my phone using the CustomGadz X2 Module, but I still have the same issue of no FM radio except for streaming it.

  4. #14
    Maximum Bitrate jmullan99's Avatar
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    Here is the link to the library I speak of. It comes with a price tag.

    Slick USB Library

    I discussed briefly with Mitch (who build the serial cable for directed/visteon radios) and he said that the DTR line for serial must be supported to get the radio to turn on and off. Just turning on the power won't cut it. I started by searching eBay for bluetooth RS232 serial devices and looked at a dozen or two to find ones that support the DTR line. Ones that did not were fairly inexpensive (say $20-$40) and ones that did support were around $80+

    So, with the library you could use Mitch's cable directly, but have to buy the library and then make an app that uses that library. With the Bluetooth you don't need to buy the library (but buy the device and Mitch's cable), but still of course need to make an app. With either option you need to handle the audio routing from Radio to Amps some how.

    I have looked at making Android apps just briefly, and have yet to dive in. Since I have an LTE based Wifi hotspot for the car, I will likely settle for streaming for now.

    Hope that recaps my research sufficiently. If not, ask away.

    Cheers,
    John
    ZOTAC G43ITX-A-E 2.5ghz Core i3 2GB 160GB SSD
    Win7 Ultimate - OpenMobile - Directed HD - Wifi
    OMMaps + MS GPS Puck - WiFi via LTE Android phone
    2 Zones - Matrix Orbital LCD - Arduino - Build Pics

  5. #15
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    You can use a relay to control the DTR line if you know the voltage that the port uses. Serial ports can be a little crazy because they support various voltages and will depend on the device but you don't HAVE to have DTR support if you can provide the right voltages through a relay.

  6. #16
    GUS
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    I have a HQCT that I don't use, anyone want to give it a go to make it work with Android?

    http://store.mp3car.com/HQCT_i_1_0_H..._p/com-009.htm
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by GUS View Post
    I have a HQCT that I don't use, anyone want to give it a go to make it work with Android?

    http://store.mp3car.com/HQCT_i_1_0_H..._p/com-009.htm
    I'd love to use this item in my design. What would it take for me to take it off your hands?

  8. #18
    GUS
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    Quote Originally Posted by Maxx57 View Post
    I'd love to use this item in my design. What would it take for me to take it off your hands?
    I am located in Sweden, I will lend it to you if you pay for the shipping both ways, or make me an offer and it is yours.
    www.longway.to
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    Roadtrip to Murmansk
    Roadtrip to Odessa

    20 cylinders, about 650 hk Mercedes
    MB 560SL -86
    MB SL600 -94

  9. #19
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    I'm new to car stereos but I've dabbled in electronics for years. Is there anyway you could make this work? It might take an Arduino chip, but I'm pretty sure it supports bluetooth as well.

    https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11083

    Thanks!

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zekenater View Post
    I'm new to car stereos but I've dabbled in electronics for years. Is there anyway you could make this work? It might take an Arduino chip, but I'm pretty sure it supports bluetooth as well.

    https://www.sparkfun.com/products/11083

    Thanks!
    Yes this is perfect! I've already got an Arduino board to work with it. Thanks a bunch!
    Now I've been looking for an inexpensive GPS receiver to work with the Arduino as well. I have not found one yet. Any ideas?

    Thanks!

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