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WakeboardTN 06-12-2007 04:57 PM

Ipod hookup for the Clarion XMD 1
I wanted to share my experience on making one of those custom cables from someone who has never soldered a single wire. It took about 6 hours of trial and error but I finally made one sucessfully.

I used the information from this resource:

Though informative, it still didn't quite answer my questions. It seems there was an easier alternative to soldering if you read the posts on page 8 or 9. Many people ordered the 13 pin dinn prewired - and the intructions in the final pages of the posts seemed to help newcomers without much trouble at all...

But for me - I had already ordered the 13 pin dinn, bought stereo headphone wire, pole switch, 30 watt solder gun and used an old cat 5 cable (ethernet) and cut all the wires off each side but two (the green and the green/white). Any two wired cable should do.

I'll save you the drama and cut to the final outcome and hopefully answer questions that I had:

1) The diagram on the site DOES show the perspective from the PLUG side - so you should solder your wire in reverse order.

2) If you've never soldered before, I found it easier to pull 5 pins out of the plug with needle nose pliers (they pop right out) solder the wires to each plug independently and then plug then back into the coresponding holes.

3) I paid extra special care to make sure the solder and none of the other wires touched (obvious, but some ppl had shorts and I suspect this was the cause).

4)I had the best luck with this when I just stripped about 1/4 of an inch of exposed wire from each wire and soldered it to the pin. I used
someone else to hold the wire and the pin, while I fumbled with the solder job - it worked out nicely.

5) Before I knew the diagram was in reverse I tried it on my boat and it almost melted my ipod - it was ok but there is a faint hot wire smell on my ipod - so my advice is when you throw the switch and it doesn't say ACCS on the unit - then don't try to plug anything into the headphone jack.

I hope my recent experience can benefit other boat owners who may have had the same questions that I had. If you haven't bought your set up yet ... please read the last few pages in the article above and purchase the prewired setup - it seemed like ppl had sucess with that method.


cm02WS6 06-13-2007 08:44 AM

Good tips! I went through melting two of the solder-type connectors before jumping to the pre-wired connector. I wish I knew the tips would just pop out, that would have saved me a little time and money!

BuoyChaser 06-13-2007 11:23 AM

so can you use your "ipod" controls to control the playlists and songs???

WakeboardTN 06-13-2007 11:32 AM

Yeah, you're able to plug your ipod (or any other media with a headphone jack) into your boat. The cable will allow you to use whatever media controls are on the device, and you'll hear the sound through the speakers. You're basically making an "audio in" plug.

BuoyChaser 06-13-2007 11:37 AM

nobody makes one of these???what about using the White/Red RCA inputs on the back of the head unit???

i bought the "clarion" cd changer unit for $99 and bums me out because i have to go "song-by-song" in Clarion01 playlists...

grantroberts 06-13-2007 12:26 PM

I had a local guy solder one of these up for me last year. Not pleased at all, really. It works, but I'd say that the sound quality is similar to that of an AM radio. How's the sound on yours? I'm convinced the only way to get good sound with an iPod set-up is plugging into the big jack in the bottom of the iPod (as opposed to the headphone jack). So, next on my list is to get a new head unit that can accomodate that.

WakeboardTN 06-13-2007 12:29 PM

Well, I looked all over and couldn't find anything that was ready-made. The Clarion XMD3 has the extra RCA inputs built right into the back. I first bought a RCA-to-headphone cable but the XMD1 has 2 channels front and rear or cabin and tower respectively. So I would just hijack the tower speakers and play then through my ipod while the XMD unit was off. That got old really fast so I decided to try and make my own cable with the class of others.

WakeboardTN 06-13-2007 12:33 PM

The sound on mine was really good - Now I wasn't able to REALLY test it out the water yet. But I played it at 11:30 am from my boat in covered storage and it sounded crisp and clear. But I can't really speak for it yet for being used out on the lake in the real environment.

Was the sound full of static, or just not Full? I can atleast tell you the sound was crisp and clear at a low valume. Did you buy the stereo headphone-headphone plug or just the mono? (I almost fell for that).

grantroberts 06-13-2007 01:52 PM

No static, just NOT clear or crisp. Sounds real mid-rangey. Not full - compared to a CD (which sounds great on my system). And, yeah, its the stereo plug....

DBrown2 05-01-2010 12:34 PM

Bumping This up... XMD1 is my unit just wondering if I should waiste my time or just get a new Head unit..

Since this is 3 years old, what is everyone doing now or has there been a plug and play cord built?

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