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Project Phoenix: Getting Connected

MP3ME-3

photos by: the author

Looking to Implement your 4th-gen with MP3 Connectivity Without Having to Swap Out the Head Unit? 

Our 2002 Trans Am WS6, Project Phoenix, has been getting quite an update in recent weeks, thanks to our friends at 6LE Designs and GTOG8TA.com. While we do have a lot of plans up our sleeves in regards to improved performance, and an increase in horsepower there are just a few things we’d like to address in the aesthetics and overall functionality department.

One of which includes the ability to connect our iPhone to our stereo. You see, many of us have become accustomed to newer cars with their iPod/USB connectability, that when it becomes time to slip behind the wheel of our 4th-generation F-bodies, we’re suddenly transported back to an earlier era when compact discs were considered cutting edge.

6LESPLITTER-4There are numerous ways we could remedy this, including swapping out the factory head unit for something newer, flashier and a heck of a lot cheesier. But there’s just something we enjoy about the factory Monsoon head unit that we feel looks right at home in our Trans Am – particularly the fact that while raci- I mean, cruising at night, the radio matches the rest of the interior display. It’s always been a peeve of your author whenever someone had installed a $99 Sony stereo with the ridiculous flashing lights and displays that provide a stark contract to the rest of the red Pontiac gauges.

Plus, with ten speakers and 500 watts of output, a stereo upgrade is the least of our concerns. We just would prefer to control the tunes emitting through our speakers on the way to the daily grind in the morning, and not have to listen to those AM talk shows.

Luckily, our friends at GTOG8TA.com offer a very easy and affordable solution. Called the MP3 ME Adapter, it’s designed as a direct plug and play kit that hides inside the dashboard, behind your factory head unit plugged into your antenna lead. Not only does it allow you the convenience of listening to your favorite Pandora, Spotify or iTunes station, but it also acts as an in-car phone system.

Now you’re probably thinking that this is some gimmick we ordered off of eBay, right? Wrong. The amazing team over at GTOG8TA.com proudly stand-by the MP3 ME as a reliable and functional alternative those those problematic pieces of junk you find at retail electronic stores and the popular auction site. We also saw it as a perfect alternative to an aftermarket stereo system, as mentioned earlier.

We’ve taken the time to install this into our personal WS6, Project Phoenix, and showed you step-by-step just how to install it. We even included the install video, that walks you through the process as well. You can check it out above.

It should be said that MP3 ME is also available for ’93-02 Camaro, ’04-06 GTO and even your girlfriend’s 1994-2004 Mustang. You can check out the install video, courtesy of MAX Performance’s youTube channel, here.

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Installing the MP3 ME kit is cut and dry; you literally just plug and play! Even if you’re not an electrical whiz, the instructions as well as the YouTube video provide all of the insight you need to install it. The ’93-02 Camaro/Firebird kit can be found on GTOG8TA.com’s website, under part number RPC189Z.

 

Whenever you're dealing with electronics or electrical systems associated with your car, it's always best (and usually recommended) to disconnect the battery first.

Whenever you’re dealing with electronics or electrical systems associated with your car, it’s always best (and usually recommended) to disconnect the battery first.

 

Next, you simply (but carefully) pull the radio face plate/bezel off of the dash panel. It's possible to do this purely buy hand, but a small flat head screw driver helps.

Next, you simply (but carefully) pull the radio face plate/bezel off of the dash panel. It’s possible to do this purely buy hand, but a small flat head screw driver helps.

 

Pulling the face plate off reveals the six bolts holding the radio and A/C units in place. Remove the four holding the radio in place.

Pulling the face plate off reveals the six bolts holding the radio and A/C units in place. Remove the four holding the radio in place.

 

After some "finessing" on our end, we were able to pull the head unit out from the front. If your car is fully loaded with traction control, you may find yourself untangling some of the wiring harnesses from behind the dashboard, in order to do so. Our car was completely unmolested in this regard, and in fact, had never had its radio removed up to this point. However, being the final year of production example, it could be possible some of the line workers weren't as enthusiastic about building these cars as they should have towards the end, and the harnesses weren't as separated as neatly as we would have liked.

After some “finessing” on our end, we were able to pull the head unit out from the front. If your car is fully loaded with traction control, you may find yourself untangling some of the wiring harnesses from behind the dashboard, in order to do so. Our car was completely unmolested in this regard, and in fact, had never had its radio removed up to this point. However, being a final year of production example, it could be possible some of the line workers weren’t as enthusiastic about building these cars as they should have towards the end, and the harnesses weren’t as separated as neatly as we would have liked.

 

With the head unit free from its mounting post, we were able to connect the antenna connector that not only allows the antenna to continue to function, but connects the wire that will connect to our mobile device.

With the head unit free from its mounting post, we were able to connect the antenna connector that not only allows the antenna to continue to function, but connects the wire that will connect to our mobile device.

 

 

We ran the mobile device wire from behind the dash and under the center counsel. It's visible only for the sake of this photo, just to show you how it's routed.

We ran the mobile device wire from behind the dash and under the center counsel. It’s visible only for the sake of this photo, just to show you how it’s routed.

 

Be sure to pop in next time, for the latest update on our WS6 – we have some serious hardware in store for it!

Source :

GTOG8TA.com

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