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NCSurfing

Question about '15 23 LSV head unit

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NCSurfing

Is the stereo head unit in the '15 Bluetooth enabled? Trying to figure out which WS-420 to get...thx in advance!

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Dan Lee

Yes, they have bluetooth standard. Also, there was a change about halfway through the year. What is the 3rd & 4th last digit in your hull ID #?

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NCSurfing

Yes, they have bluetooth standard. Also, there was a change about halfway through the year. What is the 3rd & 4th last digit in your hull ID #?

Looks like 2S

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mikeo

Is the stereo head unit in the '15 Bluetooth enabled? Trying to figure out which WS-420 to get...thx in advance!

The stereo "head unit" is now software in the 7" windows embedded computer on the dash (and it's got a few bugs). The 7" computer has bluetooth built in, but there were two versions of it in '15; The early version doesn't have a 3" "rubber duck" antenna screwed to the back of it, and the late version does have an external antenna. The bluetooth functionality through the 7" display isn't the same as bluetooth directly to the black box in the observer's seat storage compartment. You can add, or your dealer may have added, a RFXBT module to the RFX6000-SX black box. See the page here:

http://www.rockfordfosgate.com/products/details/rfx6000-sx

The bluetooth through the 7" display is A2DP compliant so it displays ID3 tag data on the screen when playing and allows the function options (skip/track forward, skip/track back, etc. to work correctly). I don't have the RFXBT module so I can't say for sure, but I don't think it has A2DP functionality to display any ID3 info back to the 7" display.

There are some posts on the site pointing out the inferior audio quality of both the RFXBT and the 7" display embedded bluetooth module. My experience is the bluetooth audio input gain is set drastically low on the 7" computer, but I haven't tried to "break in" and set the gain higher (yet). I personally like having the control of the big media knob so using the 7" computer bluetooth input is the best option for me.

You may want to consider the Exile Digital Media Center if the equalizer functionality isn't a requirement:

http://exileaudio.com/store/index.php/amplifiers/signal-processing/exmc1.html

As far as the HIN numbers go, they specify a build number for your boat and only the last 4 digits are unique each year; The HIN can't be decoded like a car VIN can. When the boats are in the factory they have X-1234 on all the identifying paperwork where the X identifies the hull/model type and the 1234 specifies your boat's custom build options; the 1234 is serial to the build date with 1233 coming before and 1235 coming after 1234. You can call Malibu and ask for a build sheet based on your HIN and they can provide a full manifest of every component that went in to your boat build.

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NCSurfing

The stereo "head unit" is now software in the 7" windows embedded computer on the dash (and it's got a few bugs). The 7" computer has bluetooth built in, but there were two versions of it in '15; The early version doesn't have a 3" "rubber duck" antenna screwed to the back of it, and the late version does have an external antenna. The bluetooth functionality through the 7" display isn't the same as bluetooth directly to the black box in the observer's seat storage compartment. You can add, or your dealer may have added, a RFXBT module to the RFX6000-SX black box. See the page here:

http://www.rockfordfosgate.com/products/details/rfx6000-sx

The bluetooth through the 7" display is A2DP compliant so it displays ID3 tag data on the screen when playing and allows the function options (skip/track forward, skip/track back, etc. to work correctly). I don't have the RFXBT module so I can't say for sure, but I don't think it has A2DP functionality to display any ID3 info back to the 7" display.

There are some posts on the site pointing out the inferior audio quality of both the RFXBT and the 7" display embedded bluetooth module. My experience is the bluetooth audio input gain is set drastically low on the 7" computer, but I haven't tried to "break in" and set the gain higher (yet). I personally like having the control of the big media knob so using the 7" computer bluetooth input is the best option for me.

You may want to consider the Exile Digital Media Center if the equalizer functionality isn't a requirement:

http://exileaudio.com/store/index.php/amplifiers/signal-processing/exmc1.html

As far as the HIN numbers go, they specify a build number for your boat and only the last 4 digits are unique each year; The HIN can't be decoded like a car VIN can. When the boats are in the factory they have X-1234 on all the identifying paperwork where the X identifies the hull/model type and the 1234 specifies your boat's custom build options; the 1234 is serial to the build date with 1233 coming before and 1235 coming after 1234. You can call Malibu and ask for a build sheet based on your HIN and they can provide a full manifest of every component that went in to your boat build.

Thank you for the very comprehensive reply - I appreciate this! 2 clarification questions....

1- is the significance of the rubber duck antenna regarding the reception strength of the Bluetooth signal? If so, it seems this would be a must have to keep the connection from dropping intermittently

2- is there any reason why one would want Bluetooth via both the computer and RFXBT? Seems per your comment that you would lose the joystick control with the RFXBT thus, what would be the benefit of opting for the RFXBT module as the primary connection?

In the end though, my primary question has been answered....looks like I don't need the BT model of the WS-420!

Thanks again!!!

Edited by NCSurfing

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jsmail

Thank you for the very comprehensive reply - I appreciate this! 2 clarification questions....

1- is the significance of the rubber duck antenna regarding the reception strength of the Bluetooth signal? If so, it seems this would be a must have to keep the connection from dropping intermittently

2- is there any reason why one would want Bluetooth via both the computer and RFXBT? Seems per your comment that you would lose the joystick control with the RFXBT thus, what would be the benefit of opting for the RFXBT module as the primary connection?

In the end though, my primary question has been answered....looks like I don't need the BT model of the WS-420!

Thanks again!!!

Mine did not originally come with the RFXBT so it used VIPER II on the 7" screen. The problems that I had is all the functions with the remote at the back didn't work and only the volume and mute worked with the paddle wheel/knob (also no fader or balance controls along with no bass or treble adjustment... but that won't matter with a 420) I purchased the RFXBT which works directly with the Rockford Fosgate black box and it has all those functions, the gain is also set higher, and all the functions on the remotes work. It cost around $80 and you can get it at Sonic Electronix. It also makes it easier having two Bluetooth functions to bounce back and forth between different peoples phones for songs.

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NCSurfing

Mine did not originally come with the RFXBT so it used VIPER II on the 7" screen. The problems that I had is all the functions with the remote at the back didn't work and only the volume and mute worked with the paddle wheel/knob (also no fader or balance controls along with no bass or treble adjustment... but that won't matter with a 420) I purchased the RFXBT which works directly with the Rockford Fosgate black box and it has all those functions, the gain is also set higher, and all the functions on the remotes work. It cost around $80 and you can get it at Sonic Electronix. It also makes it easier having two Bluetooth functions to bounce back and forth between different peoples phones for songs.

Got it. Is the antenna important for the computer BT? If so, if you know where to get this, I would appreciate it. I certainly don't want to deal with signal issues. Thanks again for this!

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mikeo

Got it. Is the antenna important for the computer BT? If so, if you know where to get this, I would appreciate it. I certainly don't want to deal with signal issues. Thanks again for this!

Been on the road all day, so just able to answer now. The big difference between the unit with the bluetooth antenna and non-bluetooth antenna is that the internals are totally different. I've heard that many people who have the "old" (no BT antenna) version had various problems and had the computer module replaced by Malibu. I don't recall off the top of my head what the issues were, but I am fairly certain that the GPS antenna functionality (for compass) is included in the old version, but the new version needs a $10 from Amazon.com antenna to get the GPS compass to work. Read my write up here:

http://www.themalibucrew.com/forums/index.php?/topic/56417-compass-on-2015-dash/

I believe that the main reason Malibu changed to the "new" 7" computer module with the high-gain BT antenna is due to the testing and introduction of the surf band; all the evidence I have is that the surf band is BT, but the FCC records were still confidential the last time I tried to look them up. Due to the range needed and the signal blocking (dash, driver, possible passengers) the BT signal may be significantly weakened before it gets to the antenna, therefore a higher gain antenna was needed.

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