: Initial impressions of iSimple (PAC Audio) ISGM574 iPod/iPhone integration kit



Ludacrisvp
09-20-12, 10:06 PM
Installed this today and have an initial impression review.
This is a newer release model that replaces the "uPAC-STS" that is marked as being compatible with / created for iPhone 4 / iTouch 4.

Basically here is my 1 day of ownership review:

1. Works with my iPhone 4 running JB iOS 5.1.1.

2. Works partially with latest version of Pandora.
- Displays full track and artist information on the NAV unit.
- If the current song playing on Pandora started before being plugged in it will not display anything until the next track starts.
- As expected there is no display of any album art in any form of playback.
- I say partially since it cannot advance to the next track, and if you try to do so it will launch the iPod application and start playing that.

3. Navigating / 'browsing' content on the iPod portion of the interface is very clumsy.
- NO ability to just play random music from the NAV unit directly, it plays alphabetically track by track when in track mode.
- I only used the actual iPod portion for a short time as I use Pandora more often than not.
- It would have been better if it was designed to use seek up/down buttons on the face of the NAV to advance tracks rather than using the rotary knob to control next track / artist / album. I assume this design makes those without ACC/HUD able to fast forward their track using the seek button, but since I have ACC I don't have a seek button (only a preset up/down which cannot control it at all.)

4. The cord is crazy long I drilled a hole into the roof of the glovebox and ran the cable in there.
- I wanted to run it into the Center Console but it didn't seem too easy to do, so I opted for the glovebox method.
- The cord has a really thick shielding and there is another little box on the cable about a foot from the ISGM574 unit that is about 50% of the size of the whole unit.

5. Charges iPhone without any complaints from the phone about being an unsupported accessory.

6. When connected to iPhone you are unable to manually control the iPod portion on the phone as you are greeted with 'accessory connected' when entering the iPod application. On a JB device there is a tweak to disable this screen so that you can retain controls.

7. Since this hijacks the XM interface you are allowed to select the "Center Point" DSP setting that you cannot choose via the RCA inputs in the center console.

8. The car seemed to remember that the iPod was being used in the interface and I did not have to jump to FM then back to XM to continue using the iPod... although the car was only off for very short periods of time during that test so its possible that if it were off for longer it would 'forget'.

9. Each track that plays is like a new XM station, so you kind of have a counter of the number of tracks you have played/skipped

10. The 30 pin connecter is of the old locking style with the 2 buttons on the sides, rather than the newer quick release cable.

I have the nu-PAC STS for my lock pick, this makes a LOT of cables behind the NAV unit with only 3 wires connected to the NAV unit directly now.
(FM antenna, GPS antenna, and the smallest of the 4 connectors on the back of the unit.)

On a side note, there is an excessive amount of open/dead space behind the dashboard... I wish GM planned it out a little better to allow for a usable glovebox.

I will likely update with further info after running it a few days.

Overall I would give it a 3.5 / 5 due to the somewhat clumsy navigation method used to 'browse' the iPod.

Amazon has it for $95 shipped.

DarkMingBlueSTS
09-20-12, 10:43 PM
Nice write up Luda

1BadCadSTS
09-21-12, 08:50 AM
Pretty spot on but you ran random. You must not have info turned on so it shows your XM presets and hit the 3rd preset.