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E46 M3 (2001-2006) Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006.


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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 01:12:59 PM   #1
Obioban
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Exclamation Intravee: highly under rated, and not just an iPod adaptor! READ IF YOU HAVE NAV!

Preface: I go into a lot of detail in this thread on the things you can do with the intravee. By no means do you have to. If you just want to use it as an iPod adaptor, it's a super easy install and is hugely better than any other iPod adaptor sold for the car. This things that are gone into in this thread shouldn't scare you away from the intravee, none are necessary in the slightest. But, awesome, you can do them if you want to

I don't understand how this thing flies so far under the radar. I view it as a basic requirement if you have nav.

And, no, I don't sell this. In fact, as far as I know the only way to get it is to order it from England. That's the only reason I can see why this thing is flying under the radar so fully!

Features:
1) best iPod interface for the car, bar none
2) programable buttons
3) automatic clock setting based on GPS
4) Graphical display of the parking distance control sensors on the nav screen, automatically enabled when you put the car in reverse
5) automatic folding up of side mirrors, if you have power fold mirrors
6) Data logging of your car when you drop it off at the dealership/shop-- including if it was revved out when cold!
7) updatable firmware with new features added regularly
8) No glitchiness!
9) support for many, MANY alpine devices-- MP3 CD changers, HD radio, sirius, xm, etc etc.

Now, to show each feature so people fully appreciate this...


1)

You can search by artist, playlist, album, etc etc-- and each time scroll through the available options and select what you want.


2) You can program the following buttons: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, clock, dolby (e46 doesn't have this button), phone, steering wheel phone, m/t. (the last 3 you can only program if you don't have bluetooth). You can set them up to take you directly to specific playlists, switch between intravee devices (change iPods, go to XM, etc), or to take you to specific menus (playlist search, etc). That said, you NEVER have to do anything by obscure button combinations-- you can always use the menus to navigate to anything.


3) I never have to set my clock after disconnecting the battery, it always sets itself as soon as the car gets GPS lock. This is better than just being lazy-- it means my car has a built in exactly correct clock .


4) I don't have pics of the nav interface, but here's how it looks on the e39 cluster (left side bars are signal strength from the front of the car (it's front 4 sensors), right side bars are the signal strength from the rear sensors. These let you know where the objects you're hearing are, so you can better judge if they're actually a threat! Plus it tells you exact distances.




5) Don't have a pic of this, but... once you turn it on, if you hold the lock button on your remote the mirrors fold up. When you unlock the car they come back down.


6) Haven't you always wanted to know how your car is driven when you drop it off at the stealer/shop? Well, now you can... in great detail (log file stolen from M5board):



7) No pic of this either. They keep adding new features regularly, though (PDC feature was just added, for example).


8) This is the 3rd iPod adaptor I've had on this car. Previous adaptors have all required unplugging and replugging (resetting) on a fairly regular basis. In the 2 years I've been using the intravee now, I've NEVER had to reset it. Not even once.


9) nice feature for catless/race cats/diesel owners: switch to recirculate on reverse and back to previous setting after


10) auto map zoom based on speed (zooms out as you speed up, in as you slow down, at intervals and a starting speed of your choosing)


11) Automatic muting of music in reverse, so you hear the PDC beeping


12) electronic diagnostic screen-- temps, highest temps, revs, highest revs, actual speed, highest actual speed, etc


13) Assign keys to settings-- as in, share a key with your significant other? It can automatically select your iPod when using your key and their iPod when using their key


Intravee supported device list to date:

KCA-420i iPod interface


CHA-S634 6 Disk MP3 CD Changer


CHA-S624 6 Disk CD Text Capable CD Changer


CHA-S614 6 Disk CD Changer


CHA-S605 6 Disk CD Changer


CHA-S604 6 Disk CD Changer


MHA-S670 6 Disk MD Changer


KCA-410c 2 Port AI-Net switch plus 2 Aux inputs


KCA-400c 4 Port AI-Net switch


TUA-T100DAB DAB digital radio tuner (Europe)


Support with V6 firmware

CHA-1214 12 Disk CD Changer


CHA-1204 12 Disk CD Changer


DHA-S690 6 disk DVD changer


DHA-S680P 6 disk DVD changer


Intravee 3 port switch


Support with Intravee serial number greater than 003000

TUA-T500HD HD digital radio tuner (America)


TUA-T550HD HD digital radio tuner (America)


TUA-T020XM XM satellite radio tuner (America)


SIRALP-1 Sirius satellite radio tuner (America)


Support in development

KCA-SC100 Sirius satellite radio interface (America)


Support being investigated for future firmware

DVA-5205p DVD player


DVA-5210 DVD player


'Theoretical' support, but not tested

SIR-ALP10T Sirius satellite radio tuner (America)


Edit: just found this on another forum and it amused me:
Quote:
Originally Posted by delmarco View Post
Intravee II with an Alpine KCA-620m Ai-Net USB Interface!



The Intravee solutions are literally, and I mean literally ,endless!



Final note: some of the features listed above are MKIV only. Specifically the advanced search modes.




Disclaimer: the below is starting to get fairly complex. You don't have to worry about how complicated his system is. All you actually need to enjoy an intravee is an intravee and an iPod. The below is just to show how far it'll let you go, if you so desire!

Another edit, sweet new feature thanks to CCFJ1--- the ability to use control an aftermarket amplifier through the stock nav display:

Quote:
Originally Posted by ccfj1 View Post
IV now with DSP support.

Needed:

1 x Alpine Ai-Net Imprint DSP Processor, PXA-H100
1 x modded Ai-Net lead
1 x Intravee, with new (latest) Firmware. (Do not plug an Alpine DSP in **without** the Latest version for IV firmware being loaded first).

Not needed, But handy if you want to change the OEM menu values
1 x modded v32 nav software.

Alpine KTX-H100 Imprint Sound Manager.

While looking through the list of Intravee supported devices, I saw the Alpine PXA-H700 / PXA-H800 DSP processors and since I was using a Pioneer DEQ processor to tune my setup, I thought I would see if I could find one of the alpine units as being able to control it via the screen would be a bonus.

Looking on-line for the Alpine PXA-H700 / PXA-H800 DSP proved to be an expensive search, but I did however stumble across the Alpine PXA-H100 which is a cut down version of the H700/H800 (cut down as in inputs on NOT in features), it is Ai-Net compatible so I the asked the guys over at Intravee if this was also supported.

They said in all honesty they didn't know...as they didn't have one available to test, they also said the the H700/H800 required a modded Ai-net lead for them to work correctly.

The PXA-H100 is quite a unit, inc 5 band parametric or 7 band graphic EQ 6 channel time correction 2/3 channel X-Over Media Expander, Time Delay, X-Over etc so I was keen to see if it could be made to work.

See here for The Alpine blurb.

http://www.alpine.uk.com/p/Products/...ors14/pxa-h100

So I took a chance and bought one along with the tune-up kit.

Here is what the postman brought:



Processor


Tune-up kit


I got the spec of the modded lead and I bought some leads and bits in and made this up.



There is basic DSP device handling in the Intravee firmware (beta versions) so I then plugged the new lead into my system (between the DAB tuner and Intravee and then powered connected the RCA from my BM54 up and this is what came on screen.









While the display does indeed show the DSP as being available it's not really as the alpine unit is emulating the OEM BMW DSP, so the functions (at this point) do not work.

Now running a DSP does funny things to the OEM BMW setup.

1: The BM54 sees a DSP on the system and then fixes the volume to 75%-80% of max (as the OEM DSP controls the volume). This is VERY LOUD...
2: Only the front set of speakers from the BM54 are used (as the also carry the phone and nav signals)
3: The DSP has front, rear and Sub out as RCA, so you need an amp/amps that will accept RCA.

So I reported back to Intravee and we hammered out a plan. basically I'd send them the DSP and lead to them, lol, they then wrote huge chunks of new code so that the Alpine can be controlled by the IV.

Well once he had done a fair amount of writing and testing, they sent the unit back and emailed me the new IV firmware, I installed both and I also made a new version of the nav computer OS (as this holds the DSP text strings) this is what I now get.

Main menu











Intravee Setup menu














Small video.
DSP :: IMG_0160.mp4 video by ccfj1 - Photobucket

Sound out of the DSP is very good indeed and the built in pre-sets are also very good, being able to adjust more than just bass and treble makes quite a difference to the sounds.

There are a few bugs and inconsistencies and the phone/VR/Nav instruction have been a bit of a handful, but I'm sure these will get ironed out.

I've already installed several updates to the firmware.

Over all very pleased, sound is awesome and I have much more control.

Big Big shout to the guys at Intravee.

This is my system now.




Also: You don't really need the tune up kit, but if you want to run the auto setup software then this will allow you to save the sound curve into the DSP and you can select it (from the Intravee DSP menu) instead of manual adjustments.

Note:
The latest version of the Intravee firmware also includes.

Auto zoom in/out (depending on speed) for the map screen (this is very cool).
A PDC screen when reverse is selected, you actually see the distance on screen automatically,
auto pause the ipod while reversing, this is handy as you don't need to fiddle with the volume when you select reverse,
adjustable indicator blink,
folding mirror options (with several fold unfold options)
DSP control.
Car journal allows you to view the last 24 car journeys (handy for when dropping of to dealers etc), records things like speed, revs distance etc.
Service info
Real time running stats, there is a sort of G-force meter in there too, lol.

To get this you must have registered your Intravee and ask in the forums for the latest version.

Last edited by Obioban; Mon, Apr-08-2013 at 06:47:11 PM.
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 01:14:45 PM   #2
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edit 11/30/2012

The creator of intravee died last week. One of his friends, RichardP on here, gave the back story later on in the thread. I'm editing it to here so it doesn't get lost in the shuffle:

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichardP View Post
Now the messy account business has been cleared up, here's the latest update and some history.

Back in March 2002 I bout an E46 330i Sport touring. It had a Mk III Nav and a CD Changer.

I very quickly got fed up with the 6 disc changer on my 480 mile round trip journy between work places that I did (and still do) abot twice a month. I started looking round for some way to play MP3's. I found a device tha enabled connection of an Alpine CHA-S634 to the BMW system called an 'ICD', it used the M-Bus mode of the CHA-S634 so no folder navigation and no text display; it was very unreliable!

In Spetember 2004 I changed the car for an E46 330d sport touring with the latest Mk IV Nav and I took the oportunity to see if there was anything better than the ICD device.

I stated looking for something better that would use AI-Net mode but there was nothing available. Then I stumbled on the Intravee web site which outlined the proposed development of the Intravee but which had been shelved. I sent an e-mail to Simon on 9th November 2004.



He e-mailed me back within a couple of hours



And so began my involvement with Simon and the Intravee. At the time I had just got divorced and needed something to occupy my time, Simon and I spent many, many hours logging iBus and AI-Net messages to get the system working, gradually building up functionality. Some early screen shots I took:







Note the time on this one!



As you can see above, the original Intravee was called an ‘Intravee 100’, it was really only suitable for small handmade production runs, it was far too expensive to make commercially. So Simon redesigned the Intravee to become the ‘Intravee II’, using more surface mount components and a layout suitable for automated production. Intravee 100 also used a hardware implementation of the AI-Net interface which was very expensive; Intravee II used a separate dedicated CPU, an ATMEL MEGA8. Even the case on the Intravee 100 was expensive, with hand cut aluminium end plates.

Here are some early pictures.







My Intravee II arrived on 12th May 2005.

The original Intravee II was still hand made by Simon, he made maybe 30 or so, and it used an ATMEL MEGA128 CPU with 128K flash and 4K RAM. ATMEL had just announced the MEGA256 CPU which had twice the flash (256K), twice the RAM (8K) and was pin compatible. There was one minor issue with some ports being slightly different, but other than that it was a direct swap. There are still one or two MEGA128 CPU Intravee about today but many have been upgraded, if you buy one second hand be wary of those with serial numbers with 4 digits like '0123'! Apart from a few very minor changes, an increase in fuse rating and placing it in a holder, plus a minor track layout change to enable a jumper to be used more easily, the Intravee hardware has remained the same.

I was trying to encourage Simon to have the Intravee made commercially, but he didn’t have the funds to pay for an initial production run. In the end I lent Simon the money and he paid me back as the Intravee sold. Simon set up a relationship with BimmerNav to sell the Intravee and this was quite successful for a time. For some reason the relationship did not last, Simon had very high standards and expectations, realistically, far too high, and most people could not live up to them for long. The Intravee is now sold only by ToysInYourCar in the UK.

Simon had several other projects going and was not doing as much firmware development as he had been. In early 2008 I persuaded him that a major re-write was necessary this became the V6.00 firmware and V6.01 firmware that is still supplied with the new Intravee. Previous firmware had used hard coded menus, V6 used a fully data driven menu structure that Simon and I devised together. I wrote a Windows application that could be used for designing the Intravee menus and which kicked out a load of highly compressed menu data definitions, at this stage Simon still wrote all the Intravee code himself and used the data definitions.

Eventually we decided that it would be easier if he made the source code repository available to me to check out, modify and check back in again. He wrote some scripts that I could run to compile the code and issue the output so I could download it and test the result. Luckily, in early 2010 he sent me a backup copy of the virtual machine that he used to compile the firmware, without this or access to his PC’s there is no way the Intravee firmware could be compiled today. Due to using the ATMEL MEGA256 very early in its production there were no compilers that supported it fully. Simon had to modify the compiler to gain access to the extra 128K of flash. Simon tried using later versions of the compiler hoping to use a standard release, but the images that the created were too large to fit in the Intravee flash. The firmware is also encrypted for use with the downloader program, without this the only way to update the firmware would be to use an AVR programmer via the header inside the Intravee. In other words, for 99.9% of users upgrading the firmware would require sending the Intravee to someone with the right equipment.

We also discussed the introduction of using the Intravee for other purposes other than just music control. Simon was not particularly keen on the idea as it would potentially cause problems with CE approval; a device that can control items on a vehicle falls into a different category which would involve very expensive testing to gain certification. Simon was sure that the design would pass the tests, but could not justify spending somewhere in the order of 50,000 on the tests. We decided that the Intravee should ship without any control features, but that having ‘pre-release’ firmware that could perform these functions would be a way around the problem.

Simon also gave me access to the support email system so that support questions could be answered if he was busy or away. So over the years both Simon and I have answered support questions.

The Intravee has two main areas that limit its appeal:

1) Although in some ways a strength, the reliance on AI-Net devices such as the KCA-420i, this also adds to the total cost to the end user.
2) The limited amount of internal storage makes adding extra functionality more difficult that it would otherwise be.

Simon started work on the Intravee III to overcome these problems. The idea was to use one of the recent ARM CPUs to give the same type of iBus capability as the Intravee II, together with the existing dedicated AI-Net CPU, but to have a USB port and run Linux so that pretty much anything could be connected. This device would have had Megabytes of flash and 100’s of Kilobytes, if not Megabytes, of RAM. Unfortunately that project is not complete and I now doubt it ever will be.

While Simon was busy with that project, and some others, I continued with Intravee II firmware development, adding the PXA-H100 support and a few more of the ‘Extra Features’.

Where things go from here is still unclear. I’m in contact with Simons brother and he sounds willing to do anything that’s required to keep the business going, however he is not a ‘computer person’ at all, and would not want to do anything himself.

From my point of view, I’m happy to continue to work with the Intravee firmware and provide support. There is a continual battle for space in the Intravee, remember it only has 256K Bytes of flash and 8K Bytes of RAM, when I rebuilt the firmware yesterday there were 585 Bytes free!

From the hardware point of view Leigh at ToysInYourCar still has stock and wants to continue to sell the Intravee II. The factory in which the Intravee is made should be able to keep producing them as far as I know. There is one component that is difficult to source, fortunately Simon CC’d me in on an e-mail to the only known supplier so I now have their contact details and have spoken to them.

The question of making the Intravee open source is probably quite tricky and I think depends on what happens on the hardware side. Simon always said that he would be happy to make the code open source, but he did not want other companies to use it and make money from it. In particular, untill relatively recently, no one else had managed to decode the Alpine AI-Net protocol. Simon designed the Intravee firmware to be very modular, each module in theory could be implemented on different hardware as it uses a messaging system to pass data between modules. However, mainly due to the very tight space constraints some of the demarcation has become a little ‘fuzzy’ with some shared variables and routines. I think it would be fair to say that a lot of intrinsic knowledge is required to understand the Intravee code in its current state.

I’m trying to organise a web site for hosting firmware, documentation etc. Leigh at ToysInYourCar owns www.intrevee.com so it’s possible this can be used. In the meantime, if anyone has any problems or questions please e-mail me at richard ‘dot’ parkinson7 ‘at’ ntlworld ‘dot’ com.

Richard
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 01:57:12 PM   #3
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Yep, I love mine. I still won't go with the DICE Mediabridge since it doesn't support enhanced text. IE, it doesn't use the ENTIRE NAV screen like the Intravee does.

My one wish... Support for streaming audio from the iPhone. But that is more of a problem with the KCA-420i. You have to use the AUX port off the phone into a KCA-420c or the AUX port on the BMW (if you have one).
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 02:00:04 PM   #4
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I really want Bluetooth support through intravee as I think this would work better than the retrofitted OEM one for my car
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 02:01:48 PM   #5
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Pretty Sick, i never heard of this one before.
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 02:21:38 PM   #6
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Pretty Sick, i never heard of this one before.
+1, nice review.
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 03:01:27 PM   #7
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D@mnit! Nav is the one option that I really wish I had
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 03:08:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
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D@mnit! Nav is the one option that I really wish I had
nav and xenons are the only two options I consider must have. And, really, xenons much less so these days with all the retrofits
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 03:11:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
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nav and xenons are the only two options I consider must have. And, really, xenons much less so these days with all the retrofits
Have you ever seen any GOOD QUALITY non-nav to nav conversions? I've seen several threads where it has been discussed but never seen anyone who has actually done the conversion.

Last edited by Voltaire; Fri, Dec-17-2010 at 03:38:52 PM.
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Old Fri, Dec-17-2010, 03:12:45 PM   #10
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Quote:
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nav and xenons are the only two options I consider must have. And, really, xenons much less so these days with all the retrofits
Xenons I disagree on as both you and I are effectively running non stock xenons but something much better! Thank you Lightweks!
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Discussing Intravee: highly under rated, and not just an iPod adaptor! READ IF YOU HAVE NAV! in the E46 M3 (2001-2006) Forum - Engine: S54 - Max Hp: 333 hp at 7,900 rpm / 262 lb/ft at 4,900 rpm
Total Produced: 45,000+ - Years Produced: 2001 to 2006. at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)