6C Sat Nav

Chat about your 6R/6C model Polos here!
veteran
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Wed Sep 12, 2018 3:57 pm

Yes, as I say, that's what I've been wondering about myself. Usually, the GPS loop gets incorporated by the antenna manufacturer into a sharksfin assembly, along with FM/DAB, but I've found that, these days, it's also possible to find a GPS loop incorporated into an FM/DAB bee-sting antenna - though I've no idea if VW have ever done that.

Here are a couple of adverts for these sorts of antennae - strictly non-VW/non-Kenwood, I hasten to add. These give a rough idea of the mechanical and electrical arrangements when fitting to the car roof:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Antennentechni ... ps+antenna

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Eightwood-Ante ... H85TY6HDYV

It might transpire that where, on a 6C, the customer has opted at time of purchase for a feature that requires GPS reception, a sharksfin is always fitted, but that on model purchases (like mine) where the customer hasn't requested a GPS feature, a standard FM/DAB bee-sting antenna is fitted instead. What I keep wondering, though, is whether, in the case of my Polo, there's an unused GPS loop-and-lead in the base of its bee-sting antenna and that therefore perhaps there's a GPS connector-end tied up somewhere in the dashboard that could be used with the Kenwood GVN-MIB1, rather than having to use the one supplied with the unit or having to go to the trouble of buying and fitting specifically a roof-mountable version.

SRGTD
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by SRGTD » Wed Sep 12, 2018 4:21 pm

Veteran; I’ve just done a search on 6c Polos with sat nav in the used section of VW’s website.

The pictures of the cars from the search results don’t have a shark fin aerial, so it could be that, as you suspect, there is an unused GPS loop and lead in the base of the bee sting aerial. Presumably a VW dealer would be able to confirm this?

Here are links to some of the cars from the search results. Click on the pictures and they’ll become full screen size, which makes it easier to see the roof mounted aerial, and confirmation that the car has factory fit sat nav (top right button beside the infotainment unit screen);

https://usedcars.volkswagen.co.uk/en/us ... ct-jqbqahm

https://usedcars.volkswagen.co.uk/en/us ... or-mbbrya9

https://usedcars.volkswagen.co.uk/en/us ... or-gjbr463

Andy1273
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by Andy1273 » Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:04 pm

Good info, I may go an enquire at my local vw dealer and see what they say?
The vehicle in the second link also has another retro fit I want fitting a rear view camera so another reason to go see and ask .

veteran
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Wed Sep 12, 2018 5:28 pm

SRGTD,

Yes, I see what you mean. Maybe, when I finally get around to contacting InCarTechnologies, I'll need to ask them if sometimes they find that, on a 6C, there's a ready-to-use GPS lead already in place, and that, if so, the customer won't need to use the GPS antenna supplied with the GVN-MIB1?

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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by RUM4MO » Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:31 pm

My normal line of attack in this situation is to search the proper VW Group's parts cat online, but there seems to be a bit of clamping down on the ones that we can normally use. Checking for the existence of a variety of aerials depending on the car's factory fitted options on a parts list - or not, is what you need to know.

Now, as far as I've found, VW Group will never fit any unused/underutilised functions into any of their cars, I was looking for that in my 2011 S4 when I was retro fitting DAB to that car, and found nothing of any help fitted "just in case".

Dropping down the head lining in any car is not what a DIYer wants to be doing, and if you aim to go down the OEM route to get the best GPS signal, then I'd expect that you would need to replace the complete aerial and add in extra lead(s).

veteran
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:40 am

SRGTD,

What I found a bit odd about your three used-car adverts is that whilst the pictures of the Infotainment displays, in each case, showed not only a NAV button but also in one case an actual satnav map on the screen, in the summary specification of the vehicle there was no mention of satnav at all; the infotainment unit was simply described as being 'Composition Media'. So, in retrospect, I suspect that the dealer was inappropriately using photoshots taken inside a different Polo. Therefore, I think we can't conclude that full FM/DAB/GPS bee-stings are provided on all 6C models - if at all.

SRGTD
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by SRGTD » Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:06 pm

veteran wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:40 am
SRGTD,

What I found a bit odd about your three used-car adverts is that whilst the pictures of the Infotainment displays, in each case, showed not only a NAV button but also in one case an actual satnav map on the screen, in the summary specification of the vehicle there was no mention of satnav at all; the infotainment unit was simply described as being 'Composition Media'. So, in retrospect, I suspect that the dealer was inappropriately using photoshots taken inside a different Polo. Therefore, I think we can't conclude that full FM/DAB/GPS bee-stings are provided on all 6C models - if at all.
I think more likely, the summary specification was incorrect, rather than the pictures were of a different vehicle. I’ve seen this before on VW’s website in their used car section where quite often, not all the correct options are listed.

hutch
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by hutch » Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:43 pm

I've gone ahead and ordered one from that company in Dorset. After speaking with the owner on the phone he spoke through it very well and has given be a signal booster with the sat nav box. Only thing to be aware of is allow it time to arrive, he then has to order it in from Germany so looking at over a week until I can get my hands on it, probably a good thing stop me from rushing in to fitting it and can do it properly first time. Will let you know how I get on with installation and how it works in the car once Ive fought with all the cables haha!

Andy1273
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by Andy1273 » Thu Sep 13, 2018 8:49 pm

That's great news hutch.

Keep us all updated on how things go , I take it your planning on fitting the system yourself? Do they charge you extra for the signal booster and what advice to they give you for installing the GPS loop

hutch
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by hutch » Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:40 pm

I came across these instructions online:

https://www.kenwood-electronics.co.uk/f ... ctions.pdf

If you scroll down theres instructions for the polo after a few pages, looks easy enough so going to attempt it. In terms of the TMC signal they charged £25 extra for this which Im sure I could have sourced cheaper but for ease and convenience I just paid it. Means everything will come together at least, I spoke with him regarding the gps signal and from their tests and customers reviews he was quite happy with just what the manual recommends so I am going to attempt it and can always go back in to change things up, trial and error and if theres any issues Im going to chase kenwood and garmin for answers.

I also came across this, which for a £20 subscription seems quite handy, it says to pay yearly but Ive paid once and downloaded them not sure if I will bother paying yearly for upgrades, much like map upgrades they shouldn't change too much year to year and plan on ordering a new car in the coming years so the new owner can deal with that haha!

https://www.pocketgpsworld.com/uksafety ... enwood.php

veteran
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Fri Sep 14, 2018 11:45 am

In terms of the TMC signal they charged £25 extra for this which Im sure I could have sourced cheaper but for ease and convenience I just paid it.

Eh, not sure what you mean by this, hutch. Do you mean the TMC antenna?

Re that TMC antenna, it strikes me that they've chosen one of the worst positions to lay it out. If you run it up the A-pillar and around the top of the door opening, as they've done, it'll be surrounded by the car's metalwork and will therefore render a very small signal. As I keep saying, every part of the car's shell acts as an electromagnetic screen to anything outside the car, so unless you put antennae on the outside of the vehicle, or somewhere inside where the working part of it has an unobstructed view to the outside, the received signals will be weak.

I shall therefore be very interested to hear what you ultimately report about GPS reception on the purchased unit. As for TMC reception, I suspect that TMC requires only a fairly crude whip antenna, so that's probably why it's laid out in the way that's shown. It might be, though, that TMC transmission field strengths are generally that high that you can pick up a TMC signal on virtually a piece of wet string.

Incidentally, the other day I was looking over my Polo, musing over this general antenna problem, and wondered whether the surface of the tailgate spoiler could be a suitable place to fit a weatherproof GPS loop antenna. By that, I mean just a GPS loop, not an additional bee-sting or sharksfin combo. In contrast with any change to, or addition to, the existing roof antenna, you wouldn't need to disturb the roof lining with that. The spoiler section appears to be made of steel, the same as the rest of the car's shell, so it'd provide an ideal earth plane on which to sit the loop. The requisite lead(s) from the GPS antenna would be routed through the interior of that spoiler section and then dropped into the car's interior via the flexible cableloom-boot in the top corner of the hatch. You could then route the cable to the dashboard area via the floor (under the carpet edge). The antenna would have to be one with a sufficiently long lead, though. Or alternatively you could buy and use a lead extender. The one other consideration would be whether the downlead would, over time, stand up to being continually flexed, within that cable-boot, whenever the tailgate were lifted and closed.

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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Tue Sep 18, 2018 12:13 am

hutch,

It strikes me that one of the problems encountered when fitting a GPS antenna on or under the dashboard is that, unless you position the capsule in a well-considered part of that dashboard, you'll find that whenever the windscreen wipers are operated they interfere (temporarily block) with the GPS reception. That would happen due to the fact that the wiper arms are made of a conductive metal and that each wiper arm is at earth potential, the same as the rest of the car. If the native sensitivity of the GPS antenna is inherently low or the received GPS signal itself is weak, then the moving wiper arms are only going to make that situation worse. Possibly, in most cases though, this isn't an issue. It does nevertheless convince me that the optimum spot for a dashboard mounting of the loop may not be midway across the dashboard. Instead, if there's sufficient space available, the optimum position might be in the righthand corner of the dashboard (for a RHD car) - either in the dashboard or on top of it. This would put the loop outside the sweep locus of the wipers. There'd be a need to keep it away from the A-pillar. Tomorrow, I'll assess on my own Polo exactly where that position could be, and maybe later I'll remove, if I can, the end cover of the dashboard to see if there's any sort of convenient ledge inside on which to mount the loop.

I shall be quite interested in what InCar Technologies supplies you by way of a GPS amplifier. Are they able to supply an amplifier that's built into the capsule itself? Active GPS antennae invariably have to be given a 3v - 5v DC supply, in which case where would that come from? Is Incar Tech going to provide you with a separate, inline 12v - 3v/5v converter? In some antennae arrangements the DC supply can be fed down the signal downlead.

When you eventually receive all the requisite parts for the upgrade it'll be helpful if you'd describe them and/or photograph them for this thread, so that others like myself can decide how best to deal with the GPS antenna side of things. Meanwhile, I myself have been looking at replacement roof antennae that would include GPS. That, however, would involve spending yet more dosh and would require a good deal more work. Incidentally, InCar Tech actually now sell a sharkfin roof antenna that handles all the three major bands - DAB, FM and GPS - (£189 inc VAT), so anyone already with a DAB/FM bee-sting could have it replaced with the InCar Tech sharkfin. The only reservation I have with that is that I suspect that the FM reception wouldn't be as good as with the bee-sting (in terms of sensitivity and capture ratio). Look under VW T5 conversions on their website. But there again, I'm sure that VW themselves would be able to supply, if required, a similar sharkfin antenna (possibly the self same one?) and presumably at the same sort of price.

veteran
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Re: 6C Sat Nav

Post by veteran » Tue Sep 18, 2018 1:46 pm

I've now had a chance to assess whether the righthand corner of the dash, just under the windscreen, could be a viable site for an interior-grade GPS antenna. At first sight it looked as though it was, but I found that the righthand (driver's) wiper arm still entered that zone on the maximum sweep. So, looks like I'll have to 'give that idea the elbow'.

Meanwhile, my search for a viable, dedicated, roof-mounted, active GPS antenna has continued. As a consequence, some of you wishing to improve on the performance of a dashboard-mounted GPS antenna might be interested in the Tango 20 and Tango 21 active GPS antennae made by the Siretta company. Prices range from about £19 to £28, depending on the seller. One or the other could be unobtrusively fitted on to the Polo's roof, eg. behind an existing bee-sting FM/DAB antenna, which can be left to perform its original function. The signal/power cable emerges underneath the capsule, rather than from its side. A hole is required to be drilled in the roof (the Tango 21 requiring two extra small holes for locating), and downleads of as much as 3m in length are available with both designs. For those understandably wary of ever fiddling with the Polo's roofliner, I'd hasten to point out that one or the other of these capsules could be positioned sufficiently close to the back edge of the roof as to make the disturbance to the roofliner the absolute minimum; you'd need to free the liner's back edge a tad, propping it opening just sufficient to drill the hole and getting a spanner in there. By way of the GPS connection, though, I don't know what the requirement of the Kenwood GVN-MIB1 is. Does the GPS connection on the back of the Navigation Module require a lead fitted with just a push-and-click male Fakra/SMA connector, or instead a female SMA of some sort, I ask myself? Can it be assumed that the Navigation Module is capable of supplying 2.5v - 5v into the GPS lead, as that's what these active GPS antennae require? Maybe I'll have to get specific answers on that from InCar Tech.

Edit: Subsequently, I was unable to get any help from InCar Tech, as to precisely which type of antenna connector is used on this update unit for the GPS side of things. However, by carefully analysing their videos I'm now convinced that Kenwood have used not a Fakra connector but instead a GT5 connector (grey), possibly the 1S version. If you search hard enough on the Web, you can find a seller of a short SMA female-to-GT5 female adapter. If fitting the antenna on the roof, I'd favour the Siretta Tango 20, which comes with an integral 3-metre RG174 downlead terminated in a male SMA. But whether the Kenwood unit itself pushes out a 2.5v - 5v DC supply on to the line is presently unknown.

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