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Discussion Starter #1
So I tried an aftermarket radio from Crutchfield on my 2009 M3 with manual climate control and non Bose system. I got the PAC RP4-MZ11 that enabled the steering wheel controls and that worked fine. What I did not expect was that I would loose the night time lighting for the climate control and ashtray area. I knew, and did not like, that I would loose the temperature output. Also, the metraonline dash kit leaved a lot to be desired: rattling bezels, big gaps, funny/useless pocket where the temperature display was.

Do any of you know of 1) a wiring kit that retains the climate control lighting; 2) a better looking install kit than the metraonline that Crutchfield supplies? I realize that the head unit is not simply a "radio", but the AUX input has flaked out on my car and I would like somewhat to playback music from my phone [other than using the FM transmitter types to obtain better sound quality].

Thanks!
 

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That shouldn't have affected the lighting at all. Are you sure you didn't hook something back up correctly, or pop a fuse?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Very sure everything was wired correctly. The OEM radio is back in and the lights work. The harness adapter from Crutchfield was very straight forward.

Do you know if the OEM radio supplies the power for the lights of the climate control? The whole center console is controllable by the intensity control on the left of the dash. There were two main plugs in the OEM radio (excluding the one for the display) and the Crutchfield adapter only addressed the large one. There was a smaller connector that had no where to go after the upgrade. My guess is that it powered the lights.
 

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It shouldn't. I got my radio and wiring from Crutchfield as well and I never had a issue with the dash lights not working. There is one wire on the adapter for lighting up the radio but that's it, I connected it to the dimmer wire on my radio but not all radios have this function in which case you would leave it disconnected. Maybe you have it wired wrong and its shorting out the lights or your new radio is internally shorting out this wire. Did you ever contact Crutchfield about the issue?
 

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A radio swap only takes 5 minutes in these cars, so do an experiment, put the stock radio back in, see if the lights come back on. (I bet they don't).
 

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A radio swap only takes 5 minutes in these cars, so do an experiment, put the stock radio back in, see if the lights come back on. (I bet they don't).
He already did that...
Very sure everything was wired correctly. The OEM radio is back in and the lights work. The harness adapter from Crutchfield was very straight forward.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
The Pioneer radio did have an orange wire for the dimmer, so I connected that from the Crutchfield connector. It did dim my radio, but the climate lights were blank. I never contacted Crutchfield because I ended up replacing the radio since the bluetooth hands free was so terrible. Also, the fit kit really looked terrible and rattled. I've used the Metraonline kits before and I don't recall them looking this bad.

Guess I need a wiring schematic of the harnesses that go into and out of the radio.
 

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Just stumbled across this gold mine, they even have the Bose amp pinout. MAZDA Car Radio Stereo Audio Wiring Diagram Autoradio connector wire installation schematic schema esquema de conexiones stecker konektor connecteur cable shema

This is probably what you are looking for. Looks like their are 2 different illumination wires. Maybe try using the other one with your radio?


Pretty much all of the dash kits for this car are junk. The only plus side of the Metra is that it has brackets so you can retain the LCD display. After going through 4 dash kits I found that the double DIN Scosche kit fit and looked the best though it doesn't retain the LCD and I did have to mod it slightly. I ended up using the Metra LCD brackets and a generic single DIN pocket with it to mount my single DIN Pioneer Radio.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
For some reason when you have manual climate control/no navigation they tell you in the Metra instructions to not install the display, which is what I did. I really missed the outside temp reading. It looks like Mazda uses the exact same display for all cars as you can see the things that would light up if you have more features.... so it seems like you should be able to retain the display if you remove it from the head unit.

Interesting find on the two wires. When I look in my Haynes book the wiring schematic does show the two wires you are talking about, but doesn't tell what they do. The schematic also shows everything in parallel, so it "seems" like you can remove the head unit and illumination is not affected. I might try that before buying another radio. The PAC steering wheel controller was pretty specific about which orange wire to use. Might call Crutchfield and see what they say.

Glad to hear that all the install units are junk. You saved me the trouble of going down that path.
 

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The display will stop functioning when you replace the OEM radio with an aftermarket unit because the OEM radio communicates with the display via a CANbus connection. The aftermarket head units don't have any CANbus capabilities.
 

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The display will stop functioning when you replace the OEM radio with an aftermarket unit because the OEM radio communicates with the display via a CANbus connection. The aftermarket head units don't have any CANbus capabilities.
Nope. Mine still displays the external temp with my aftermarket radio installed. Only 04-05 won't function because the display plugs into the radio instead of the dash harness.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Madmatt2024 is correct. I just went out and pulled off all the connections from my radio and the temperature still shows. You lose the clock which is no big deal. Interestingly, when I unplugged everything from the OEM radio, my climate lights still worked! That means something whacky is going on with the PAC RP4-MZ11 unit that allows for the steering controls to work. I'm going to try again and order another radio from Crutchfield. Worse case, I do not use the PAC and go with the Metra version that is much cheaper anyhow.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
The PAC harness actually has two orange dimmer wires coming off of it. The instructions are a bit confusing, but I am pretty sure I used the correct one. That is, one wire comes from the PAC itself and the other comes from the larger coupler that goes into the radio. According to the directions, you are supposed to use the one from the large coupler and keep the protective sleeve over the one coming from the PAC.

I have a new radio coming from Amazon soon and I went with the Axxess controller this time.
 

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So I tried an aftermarket radio from Crutchfield on my 2009 M3 with manual climate control and non Bose system. I got the PAC RP4-MZ11 that enabled the steering wheel controls and that worked fine. What I did not expect was that I would loose the night time lighting for the climate control and ashtray area. I knew, and did not like, that I would loose the temperature output. Also, the metraonline dash kit leaved a lot to be desired: rattling bezels, big gaps, funny/useless pocket where the temperature display was.

Do any of you know of 1) a wiring kit that retains the climate control lighting; 2) a better looking install kit than the metraonline that Crutchfield supplies? I realize that the head unit is not simply a "radio", but the AUX input has flaked out on my car and I would like somewhat to playback music from my phone [other than using the FM transmitter types to obtain better sound quality].

Thanks!
Hey so I kniw this is two years old but I just hooked my aftermarkrt radio up in my 09 mazda 3 and I'm having the same issue. Did you ever figure it out by chance?
 

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Hey so I kniw this is two years old but I just hooked my aftermarkrt radio up in my 09 mazda 3 and I'm having the same issue. Did you ever figure it out by chance?
And, I'm having the same issue. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

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It's pretty obvious from the other posts that this is an issue with the aftermarket PAC steering wheel control module. Just don't hook up the Illumination wire when installing the PAC and it should work just fine. My 08 never had this issue though I'm using a Metra Axxess module instead of the PAC one.
 

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It's pretty obvious from the other posts that this is an issue with the aftermarket PAC steering wheel control module. Just don't hook up the Illumination wire when installing the PAC and it should work just fine. My 08 never had this issue though I'm using a Metra Axxess module instead of the PAC one.
Thank you for that. Actually it wasn’t that obvious to me. But now that you pointed out that makes a lot of sense. Since I have it pulled apart it will be easy to pull that illumination wire and report back.
 
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