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From the Magazine

The Humble Mechanic: Amazing Audio

Since I did some cool coding on my Volkswagen Touareg in the last issue, I wanted to try some more. I read about a coding change on the radio that’s supposed to make the audio sound amazing, similar to the Dynaudio package, so I wanted to test that.

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Since I did some cool coding on my Volkswagen Touareg in the last issue, I wanted to try some more. I read about a coding change on the radio that’s supposed to make the audio sound amazing, similar to the Dynaudio package, so I wanted to test that.

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I queued up some music to listen to before and after coding to see what sounds better/different. Then I set up a high-quality microphone in the center console. I started by listening to what the radio sounds like completely stock, with the treble and bass set evenly, and the fade and balance set to the center of the vehicle. 

After I started up the microphone and pressed play on the music, I cranked it up about three-quarters. There was considerable distortion when turning it up that loud. So then I was ready to make the coding change and see what it sounded like afterward.

Figure 1: Access Address Word 56

In order to make this coding change, I grabbed my scan tool. To get into the radio, I selected address word 56 (see Figure 1), then coding and long coding helper. I got a pop-up box that says there’s not enough information, but I can just ignore that for now. Then I go into byte No. 4, which is actually the fifth box because zero is the first one (see Figure 2). I unchecked the check box of bit zero and hit exit. You can see our coding is different. It changed from 01 to 00 (see Figure 3). I pressed “Do It” to accept the coding, then checked for faults. After this I wanted to hear what it sounded like. 

Figure 2: Long Coding Byte No. 4

It did sound different — maybe a little bit more bass, a little fuller; I have to say though, I’m a little disappointed with so many reports where it went from sounding terrible to sounding amazing. It did sound a little bit richer, a little bit fuller, but not the amazing, crazy change that I think a lot of people have experienced.

Figure 3: View the changed coding

Now that may just be me, and it may just be this particular vehicle; perhaps on other vehicles the coding performs differently. I’m still glad I made the change, and I’m not going to change it back. I’ll leave it how it is.

So with that, let me know what other coding changes you guys want to see. I’m going to keep digging and see if I can find anything else. 

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Feel free to check out the video. I’d love to hear your thoughts. Post your comments below the video at https://bit.ly/2Y36MMq. Check out the other great comments from viewers as well. TS

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