This is bit of a unique mod in that I doubt many people have done this.
I was a bit unsure it would work so if you’re here looking for confirmation, you’ll be pleased to know that the solution below works perfectly 🙂
The setup I mention above was ideal for allowing the audio of my iPhone 4 to come through the OEM head unit in the Nitro. It also provided a separate screen so you can see the album art, along with displaying TomTom on the iPhone – both at the same time. There was also the added advantage of being able to control the audio separately, via a wireless remote control.
This setup worked perfectly for what I needed, you literally just drop the phone in the Brodit mount and it connected to the Apple 30-pin connector on the Parrot MKi9200 kit which in turn connected to the AUX-in of the OEM head unit.
However, my iPhone 4 was three years old and with the arrival of iOS7 it was time to upgrade so I bought an iPhone 5S and wanted to use this in the car in the same way as the iPhone 4.
There were a couple of issues in doing this. The first was of course that the phones are different shapes so I needed to buy a new Brodit holder. The second (and the potential deal-breaker) was that the iPhone 5S comes with a Lightning connector instead of the traditional 30-pin connector. Hooking this up to the Parrot kit was a gamble as I could find no confirmation anywhere of someone having been successful with this combination.
So, first things first, I removed the old Brodit iPhone 4 holder. However I didn’t just put an iPhone 5 holder in its place, instead I bought a Brodit MoveClip.
The Brodit MoveClip is one of those “why did nobody think of this sooner?” inventions. It is brilliant in its simplicity.
You screw the MoveClip on to the Brodit Holder (the bit which is fixed in the car), this then accepts a standard Brodit (device) holder. Which means you can swap device holders over in a flash. So with the MoveClip installed, I then clipped the iPhone 5 holder in to the MoveClip.
The fitting is rock solid as they supply a 1mm spacer plate which prevents rattle. There is no movement and you’d never know it was clipped in and not screwed in. Removal of the iPhone holder is now simply a one-handed operation. The reason I wanted the MoveClip was because I plan to fit an iPad Mini in the car too (imagine using TomTom on that screen!!) so this solution will allow me to switch between the iPhone and iPad holders with zero fuss. More on the iPad integration kit in a separate post (and when Apple eventually launch the iPad Mini Retina later in November 2013!).
Backtracking a bit, before I fitted anything I bought a genuine Apple Lightning to 30-pin adaptor cable. The important bit here is the ‘cable’ part of that adaptor. Apple make a fixed (and very short) adaptor but that wouldn’t fit in the phone holder. You can get third party / unbranded adaptors for a fraction of the (horrendous) price Apple charge, but I didn’t want to risk something not working with this combination so I fronted the cash for the genuine Apple adaptor.
The adaptor cable is approx 6″ long, ideal for this project as you’ll see shortly, and it fits beautifully in to the Brodit holder (they do make quality gear).
With the iPhone 5 holder and the adaptor cable fitted together it was time to remove the old Brodit iPhone 4 holder. This picture shows the back of the holder with the swivel mount attached before being completely removed.
With the old mount completely removed the MoveClip simply screws in to its place.
It’s quite a low profile considering its strength.
The iPhone holder then literally drops in to the MoveClip.
All that remained then was to connect the Apple Lightning 30-pin adaptor (the white cable) to the Parrot MKi9200 30-pin connector (the black cable).
The two 30-pin connectors then just get tucked out of sight under the Brodit bracket.
Here’s the finished article with TomTom running on the iPhone and the audio and album art being controlled and displayed by the Parrot kit.
So to confirm, the Parrot MKi9200 kit is connected to an iPhone 5S via a genuine Apple Lightning to 30-pin adaptor. The Parrot is then connected to the AUX-in on the OEM head unit using the Line-Out lines of the Parrot kit. The Parrot MKi9200 is running firmware v2.2 and the iPhone 5S is running iOS7.0.3 and everything works as it should, with the phone and audio being controlled perfectly via the Parrot wireless remote. The app audio (ie. TomTom spoken navigation instructions) also comes through the head unit.
UPDATE: iPad Mini integration now complete!