Jump to content
WI BIMMERS - Wisconsin's BMW Community
  • 0
AlpineE30

Stock Radio CLUSTER F***

Question

Hey All,

Still working on getting the stock radio working in my E30.  I've gotten power to the unit and it seems to be working, but I have no sound.  I have a few wires that are not connected, but 2 speakers should be working. 

I'll attach a before and now picture as well as the schematic I  am attempting to use. (If there is supposed to be an internal amp in the dash I am F*@#$%). 

If anyone has any insight I'd appreciate it.  

3527839191_eeecb9c5cf_o.png

IMG_4556.jpg

IMG_4557.jpg

IMG_4569.jpg

IMG_4570.jpg

IMG_4571.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

25 answers to this question

Recommended Posts

  • 0

i've had to figure out radio wiring twice on e30s. once, someone jacked my radio and ripped out a bit of the wiring. 2nd was going from an aftermarket back to the stock radio.

couple things:

1)different radios and model years have slightly different wiring. what is your production date/model? what radio are you putting in? were you able to confirm it was the original radio model, or did you find just a random e30 radio?

2)the factory amp is in the trunk on the bulkhead behind the carpeting

2)it looks like your car had the in-dash fader, and someone hacked it when wiring in a new radio.  its the plug that looks like this:

stereo-speaker-fader-switch-round-pin-co

the fader looks like the part the guy is holding in this photo:

dash02.jpg

your going to want to get one if you want to put this back to stock.

3)personally, i would cut all the wires back past the aftermarket splices and see what color wires you are left with to compare with the ETM and your current radio and figure where they need to go. in the end their shouldnt be very many wires to plug into the radio.

4)i lost my build thread for my black e30 when e30tech died.....i'll see if i can dig up photos. that car went from stock radio to aftermarket to a different e30 radio and i was able to sort everything out.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

My car is a 1991 325i and the radio could have been in the car. The radio is a CM5908. 

I did cut all the wires back and I have 3 extras, but that plug is definitely an issue

Bulkhead on the DS of the trunk? My trunk in pretty rough I wouldn't be surprised if it was gone. 

It's hard to tell, but that plug is still there. Where did you get the fader switch? 

IMG_4584.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
16 hours ago, straight6pwr said:

i've had to figure out radio wiring twice on e30s. once, someone jacked my radio and ripped out a bit of the wiring. 2nd was going from an aftermarket back to the stock radio.

couple things:

1)different radios and model years have slightly different wiring. what is your production date/model? what radio are you putting in? were you able to confirm it was the original radio model, or did you find just a random e30 radio?

2)the factory amp is in the trunk on the bulkhead behind the carpeting

2)it looks like your car had the in-dash fader, and someone hacked it when wiring in a new radio.  its the plug that looks like this:

stereo-speaker-fader-switch-round-pin-co

the fader looks like the part the guy is holding in this photo:

dash02.jpg

your going to want to get one if you want to put this back to stock.

3)personally, i would cut all the wires back past the aftermarket splices and see what color wires you are left with to compare with the ETM and your current radio and figure where they need to go. in the end their shouldnt be very many wires to plug into the radio.

4)i lost my build thread for my black e30 when e30tech died.....i'll see if i can dig up photos. that car went from stock radio to aftermarket to a different e30 radio and i was able to sort everything out.

 

Sorry. Forgot to quote in my previous response.  

I've been hunting all over for a picture of what the wiring for that plug is actually supposed to look like. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

ok so i looked at the 1990 etm, looks like your car wouldnt have had the dash fader. that plug should be the c243 plug that the speaker wires go to, so looks like you have what you need.

i put some notes on the pages for you.

if you have power, youre only worried about the speaker wires. if you get everything hooked up and it still doesnt work, don't forget the speakers could be dead or the radio itself.

Scan0001.jpg

Scan0002.jpg

Scan0003.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I

3 hours ago, straight6pwr said:

ok so i looked at the 1990 etm, looks like your car wouldnt have had the dash fader. that plug should be the c243 plug that the speaker wires go to, so looks like you have what you need.

i put some notes on the pages for you.

if you have power, youre only worried about the speaker wires. if you get everything hooked up and it still doesnt work, don't forget the speakers could be dead or the radio itself.

Scan0001.jpg

Scan0002.jpg

Scan0003.jpg

I have figured out where most everything goes. Except 4 of the speaker wires do not come from the (8)plug.  There are 2 loops in it and the other wires are coming from elsewhere. Also, I have a plug or cooresponding wires that don't appear to be on the schematic. I'll include a picture.  I also have a mystery white wire with no other markings coming from the dash. 

I know for a fact that 2 of the speakers worked with the previous head unit. 

Let me know your thoughts. 

IMG_4595.jpg

IMG_4597.jpg

IMG_4598.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

do you have the speaker wires from the back of the radio matched to the 8-pin plug per the etm diagram?

there are supposed to be two looped wires on that connector, per the diagram. A yellow/red loops from pin 3 to 4 and a blue/red wire loops from pins 6 to 7. That connector should also have 4 wires vanishing off into the dash headed to the amp. yellow/black, yellow/red, blue/black, blue/red

did you look for your amp yet?

you could run a temp. wire from the head unit outputs directly to each speaker to test the outputs of the radio/speakers.

what color are the two wires from that 2-pin connector? your phone pics are sized for ants. maybe its powering up a 6-CD changer, i believe this radio was capable of connecting to one.

is that white wire the power wire for the antenna, or is that accounted for already?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
17 hours ago, straight6pwr said:

do you have the speaker wires from the back of the radio matched to the 8-pin plug per the etm diagram?

there are supposed to be two looped wires on that connector, per the diagram. A yellow/red loops from pin 3 to 4 and a blue/red wire loops from pins 6 to 7. That connector should also have 4 wires vanishing off into the dash headed to the amp. yellow/black, yellow/red, blue/black, blue/red

did you look for your amp yet?

you could run a temp. wire from the head unit outputs directly to each speaker to test the outputs of the radio/speakers.

what color are the two wires from that 2-pin connector? your phone pics are sized for ants. maybe its powering up a 6-CD changer, i believe this radio was capable of connecting to one.

is that white wire the power wire for the antenna, or is that accounted for already?

 

I am not seeing on the diagram where you determine that there are loops, but they are there in the plug.

The amp is gone. 

The 2 wires are White and Brown and Blue and Grey. They originate from the same plug ( +12V) as the Violet and Brown that go to the power distributor box (on the left side of the diagram). 

My backlight is not powered. I wonder if the 2 pin is for that?

I don't have a corresponding solid white wire coming from the rear of the radio.  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
1 hour ago, AlpineE30 said:

I am not seeing on the diagram where you determine that there are loops, but they are there in the plug.

The amp is gone. 

The 2 wires are White and Brown and Blue and Grey. They originate from the same plug ( +12V) as the Violet and Brown that go to the power distributor box (on the left side of the diagram). 

My backlight is not powered. I wonder if the 2 pin is for that?

I don't have a corresponding solid white wire coming from the rear of the radio.  

i've attached a photo showing the wires on the back of the CM5908 referenced below.

its seems like general internet consensus is that mystery two prong plug is not needed. see '??' in attached photo.

backlight wire should be the white wire in the 2-pin plug that has yellow and white wires. see 'IL' in attached photo.

the white wire for the antenna power: there should be a prong near the top right corner (f you are looking at the back of the radio)where this would plug into. see 'PA' in attached photo.

 

is the amp gone, like the wires are hanging around and its been removed, or it was never there?

 

see my attached diagram for explanation of the wire loops. it shows a wire being connected to two pins of the the same connector.

 

 

3524061037_f6f9a3d3de_o.jpg

Pages from 1990 BMW 325i Convertible Electrical Troubleshooting Manual.jpg

the etm diagrams are certainly another language until you have used them a few times to figure out wiring.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
1 hour ago, straight6pwr said:

i've attached a photo showing the wires on the back of the CM5908 referenced below.

its seems like general internet consensus is that mystery two prong plug is not needed. see '??' in attached photo.

backlight wire should be the white wire in the 2-pin plug that has yellow and white wires. see 'IL' in attached photo.

the white wire for the antenna power: there should be a prong near the top right corner (f you are looking at the back of the radio)where this would plug into. see 'PA' in attached photo.

 

is the amp gone, like the wires are hanging around and its been removed, or it was never there?

 

see my attached diagram for explanation of the wire loops. it shows a wire being connected to two pins of the the same connector.

 

 

3524061037_f6f9a3d3de_o.jpg

Pages from 1990 BMW 325i Convertible Electrical Troubleshooting Manual.jpg

the etm diagrams are certainly another language until you have used them a few times to figure out wiring.

Thanks for the clarification on the diagram. This is my first run at fixing a stock radio using existing equipment.  

Got the antenna power attached, but the radio is now asking for the code and looks like I'm stuck in the hour waiting period.  

I was using that picture as a reference as well. So IL is going to be my backlight power? Damn I hope that isn't shot. 

As far as the amp goes there are wires hanging and it looks like the mounting brackets are there.  Part of me wants to just rewire the whole damn system. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 4/13/2018 at 10:42 AM, straight6pwr said:

i've attached a photo showing the wires on the back of the CM5908 referenced below.

its seems like general internet consensus is that mystery two prong plug is not needed. see '??' in attached photo.

backlight wire should be the white wire in the 2-pin plug that has yellow and white wires. see 'IL' in attached photo.

the white wire for the antenna power: there should be a prong near the top right corner (f you are looking at the back of the radio)where this would plug into. see 'PA' in attached photo.

 

is the amp gone, like the wires are hanging around and its been removed, or it was never there?

 

see my attached diagram for explanation of the wire loops. it shows a wire being connected to two pins of the the same connector.

 

 

3524061037_f6f9a3d3de_o.jpg

Pages from 1990 BMW 325i Convertible Electrical Troubleshooting Manual.jpg

the etm diagrams are certainly another language until you have used them a few times to figure out wiring.

Ran the car tonight for an hour and entered the code. Even with the antenna power and the (hopefully) functioning tape deck I'm not getting any sound. 

I found a thread about replacing the lights within the deck, but want to get some sound before I go through all of that. 

http://www.bimmerboard.com/forums/posts/145593

Looks like I need to figure out the amp situation and move forward from there. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I just picked up the amp. Hope to give that a shot tonight and see if I can get things working.

Took the car for a spin last night my dash lights are no longer working. Unbelievable. From what I've read they are part of the same wiring cluster as the radio

On 4/13/2018 at 10:42 AM, straight6pwr said:

i've attached a photo showing the wires on the back of the CM5908 referenced below.

its seems like general internet consensus is that mystery two prong plug is not needed. see '??' in attached photo.

backlight wire should be the white wire in the 2-pin plug that has yellow and white wires. see 'IL' in attached photo.

the white wire for the antenna power: there should be a prong near the top right corner (f you are looking at the back of the radio)where this would plug into. see 'PA' in attached photo.

 

is the amp gone, like the wires are hanging around and its been removed, or it was never there?

 

see my attached diagram for explanation of the wire loops. it shows a wire being connected to two pins of the the same connector.

 

 

3524061037_f6f9a3d3de_o.jpg

Pages from 1990 BMW 325i Convertible Electrical Troubleshooting Manual.jpg

the etm diagrams are certainly another language until you have used them a few times to figure out wiring.

AAAAAAAAAAAND it isn't the fuse. Any ideas? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Speedo, Tach, Fuel, Temp & Climate Control 

All of the warning lights are still functioning.

I plan on checking the ground (it was a mess) tonight.  Also, none of the wiring that would have been going back to the stock amp is back there, so it looks like I'll be sending wires out for that. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
4 hours ago, AlpineE30 said:

Speedo, Tach, Fuel, Temp & Climate Control 

All of the warning lights are still functioning.

I plan on checking the ground (it was a mess) tonight.  Also, none of the wiring that would have been going back to the stock amp is back there, so it looks like I'll be sending wires out for that. 

if all of the dash lights are dead that would normally come on when you pull the light switch to position 1, the light switch could have shit the bed or the connection came loose. any of the wire you were dealing with at the radio shouldnt have affected this, the only thing i can think of is if you were tugging you could have pulled something loose.

the amp wiring is gone? i've never heard of anyone actually pulling the wiring when putting in a new system, that would be a waste of time and rather tedious to remove from the harness. your car most likely never had an amp. do you have tweeters in the doors at the mirrors?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
1 hour ago, straight6pwr said:

if all of the dash lights are dead that would normally come on when you pull the light switch to position 1, the light switch could have shit the bed or the connection came loose. any of the wire you were dealing with at the radio shouldnt have affected this, the only thing i can think of is if you were tugging you could have pulled something loose.

the amp wiring is gone? i've never heard of anyone actually pulling the wiring when putting in a new system, that would be a waste of time and rather tedious to remove from the harness. your car most likely never had an amp. do you have tweeters in the doors at the mirrors?

I was trying not to pull on them too hard, but there wasn't much to work with. Are you thinking it got pulled from the back of the headlight switch? 

I have one odd plug, but nothing that looks like the plugs I have found when I search for the amp.  There are a few loose wires back there, but nothing that matches the schematic. 

Yes, I do have the tweeters. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

only one way to find out!

and just to be perfectly clear - there is no amp and location #3, hidden behind the carpet panel? and no wiring that has been cut running up inside the car under the seat/side panel between the rear speaker and location #3? there should be a big bundle (10ish wires) that would have gone to the amp.

and to go back a little, did you say at some point when you owned this car the speakers worked? what was changed/who changed it since that point?

bmw_eba_online_www.bmweba.com_-355.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
3 hours ago, straight6pwr said:

only one way to find out!

and just to be perfectly clear - there is no amp and location #3, hidden behind the carpet panel? and no wiring that has been cut running up inside the car under the seat/side panel between the rear speaker and location #3? there should be a big bundle (10ish wires) that would have gone to the amp.

and to go back a little, did you say at some point when you owned this car the speakers worked? what was changed/who changed it since that point?

bmw_eba_online_www.bmweba.com_-355.jpg

I’m an idiot. I was looking under the carpet on the DS side towards the tail lights in the quarter panel. It’s there.

Yes, the rear speakers were working for sure with the old radio. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

ok, well if all the components are there, and you think you have it wired correctly, and its still not working....its time to start checking individual components to make sure they are not dead.

get the radio fired up and check the outputs to make sure voltage is coming from them. someone correct me if i'm wrong, but it may be an AC current, lower voltage than 12v at each output.

if its outputting sound, what i would do is make a temporary jumper cable, pull the interior panels and connect the radio directly to each speaker to see that they are all working.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

I borrowed a speaker to attempt to see if I could get some sound out of the radio w/out having to remove any panels. Now, when I turn on the radio I can hear a click from all of the speakers. No luck getting any sound to the speaker. Also, no luck with the lights in the dash. 

The voltage coming out was .023 at the most. 

I'm thinking I ended up with a trash radio and killed my dash lights in the process of trying to do the install. 

 

 

41gTE-1mJBL._SL500_AC_SS350_.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

Not much of a wiring expert, hint if you have your hazard switch installed upside down in an e30 which is possible by the way your headlights and turn signals will exhibit strange behavior...and there was that rewired 1955 Willy's Jeep kind of on fire incident in the mid-70s. 

That said: 

-If you're getting power to the head unit have you tried running a cassette in the deck to see if you get any sound from that? If yes could be just a radio specific issue which leads to other things. I don't know the unit but If no longer power to the head is there an inline or internal fuse?

-With the radio the clicking sound through the speakers is one click when you turn the unit on or constant? 

-As far dead dash lights which fuses have you checked?

-Also to rule out the "doh" factor with the new light switch have you rotated the switch knob to make sure things aren't just dimmed (been there I am sad to admit)? 

-Lights aside do the gauges themselves still work (tach, speedo). If yes that is a good thing, if no you might have damaged/shorted your SI board.  You have had the battery disconnected during the install yes? 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
1 hour ago, Boris3 said:

-Also to rule out the "doh" factor with the new light switch have you rotated the switch knob to make sure things aren't just dimmed (been there I am sad to admit)?

ooo, good idea! could easily be missed

 

i wish you were closer so i could look at this myself.

I found this on r3v: (they suggest to check the grounds)

Quote

All the ground wires in the console are brown. I don't suspect that radio ground connection as being the cause of your lights not working unless they cut the wire. As long as they just tapped into it it should be okay. If they cut the wire, then I agree with you, that becomes the most likely fault. Try grounding the loose end of that wire if it is cut.
Probably easiest to take the cluster out and trace the dash lighting circuit back to the rheostat in the headlight switch. The connector for the dash lighting may just be disconnected from it.

Quote

I killed alot of time tracking it down, but it turned out that someone spliced a ground from the heater control light and used it as the ground for the stereo. Since all the lights use the same ground....they all stopped working

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 5/17/2018 at 11:30 AM, Boris3 said:

Not much of a wiring expert, hint if you have your hazard switch installed upside down in an e30 which is possible by the way your headlights and turn signals will exhibit strange behavior...and there was that rewired 1955 Willy's Jeep kind of on fire incident in the mid-70s. 

That said: 

-If you're getting power to the head unit have you tried running a cassette in the deck to see if you get any sound from that? If yes could be just a radio specific issue which leads to other things. I don't know the unit but If no longer power to the head is there an inline or internal fuse?

-With the radio the clicking sound through the speakers is one click when you turn the unit on or constant? 

-As far dead dash lights which fuses have you checked?

-Also to rule out the "doh" factor with the new light switch have you rotated the switch knob to make sure things aren't just dimmed (been there I am sad to admit)? 

-Lights aside do the gauges themselves still work (tach, speedo). If yes that is a good thing, if no you might have damaged/shorted your SI board.  You have had the battery disconnected during the install yes? 

 

Yeah, I have tried the cassette deck. Still no sound. Cassette deck itself seems to be working. 

The speakers click once when the radio turns on and the sound is turned up. 

Dead dash lights (& PS rear Tail light) - I have replaced fuse #'s 10,12, 19, 21, 22, 23

I did rotate the knob.  I wish it was that easy! 

The speedo, tach, etc. all work, just no longer light up. 

Yes, I did have the battery disconnected. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0
On 5/17/2018 at 12:49 PM, straight6pwr said:

ooo, good idea! could easily be missed

 

i wish you were closer so i could look at this myself.

I found this on r3v: (they suggest to check the grounds)

 

I'm getting more and more concerned the ground got messed up in the process of all of this. All of the ground wires that I can find (3 of them 1 from the radio) are all connected. Any advice on re-grounding it them? 

My analog clock is still lit and working, but I don't have lights for my heat/ac controls. 

I am concerned about pulling the cluster and causing more issues. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 0

the fact that all the lights that are out are in the same circuit leads me to believe the cause is one wire in that circuit. (causing all of them to not have power or ground.)

i'd pull the cluster/knee panel/etc to start following wires from start to end to inspect.

the cluster is easy to pull. more time consuming if you have an airbag steering wheel. i can swap clusters in about 5 min with an non-airbag wheel. there is no risk to damaging anything if you don't pull on stuff like He-man

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

×