RNS510 Firmware & Maps Info Thread

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251

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If cost is your only metric, true . . . . Some of us don't judge technology just on cost. To me, the integration on the RNS into the car makes me leave my Garmin in the other car every time . . . .
You don't know the whole story in regards to why I choose to use a standalone GPS in conjunction with the built in RNS that my SEL has. Cost is not the story here - if I were that cheap then why would I even shell out $77 for a GPS when the RNS comes with GPS built in? This is where your logic is flawed. The only reason numbers came up was to illustrate my one time $77 purchase of a standalone which includes free lifetime map upgrades compared to the $125 VW charges for EACH map update of the RNS. So how many times have YOU updated your RNS? I'm assuming you don't automatically spring for each new $125 upgrade as they are issued, correct? Or if you do, then more power to you since it is your money as I'm not suggesting how you should spend it.

I like having GPS information visible at all times - this is my main reason for having the standalone GPS. You see, I have an hearing impairment but despite that I am able to listen to/enjoy music. With the RNS displaying GPS data the music information is not visible and I like having the visual confirmation since I can't "just hear it" as it were. Doing so also means I don't have to keep switching between the displays. It is easier to run both and have the desired data visible instead of needing to keep messing with switching the RNS display which also reduces the potential for distracted driving - especially in unfamiliar/congested territory. Thanks to my hearing using audible GPS directions is NOT an option for me - I need to SEE the instructions so please don't tell me to "just listen to the voice" for navigation help.

As you can see I have very good reasons for doing things the way I do. Hopefully now you have a full understanding of my reasoning here as I am doing the best I can given my hearing limitations - I'm simply working with what I have and doing so in a manner that optimizes my use of things and funds.
 

Jetta_Pilot

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If cost is your only metric, true . . . . Some of us don't judge technology just on cost. To me, the integration on the RNS into the car makes me leave my Garmin in the other car every time . . . .
Well I can lay out a very long route on my computer and then transfer it to my Garmin GPS in seconds.
First off it is now impossible to load any waypoints into the RNS since the German VW website where you could create a file on a SD card has ceased operation. Then I could load that into the RNS. Having done that it took me over one hour to use these waypoints to create a route in the RNS. That stupid system also every once in a while wants me to enter the country I am in when in reality I have never left the city I live in.
I have taken my stand alone Garmin to Europe and once there I just set the GPS near a window and within 10 minutes the Garmin GPS knew exactly where it is.

That $ 1,200.00 POS in the car apparently forgets where it is.
 

tadawson

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You don't know the whole story in regards to why I choose to use a standalone GPS in conjunction with the built in RNS that my SEL has. Cost is not the story here - if I were that cheap then why would I even shell out $77 for a GPS when the RNS comes with GPS built in? This is where your logic is flawed. The only reason numbers came up was to illustrate my one time $77 purchase of a standalone which includes free lifetime map upgrades compared to the $125 VW charges for EACH map update of the RNS. So how many times have YOU updated your RNS? I'm assuming you don't automatically spring for each new $125 upgrade as they are issued, correct? Or if you do, then more power to you since it is your money as I'm not suggesting how you should spend it.

I like having GPS information visible at all times - this is my main reason for having the standalone GPS. You see, I have an hearing impairment but despite that I am able to listen to/enjoy music. With the RNS displaying GPS data the music information is not visible and I like having the visual confirmation since I can't "just hear it" as it were. Doing so also means I don't have to keep switching between the displays. It is easier to run both and have the desired data visible instead of needing to keep messing with switching the RNS display which also reduces the potential for distracted driving - especially in unfamiliar/congested territory. Thanks to my hearing using audible GPS directions is NOT an option for me - I need to SEE the instructions so please don't tell me to "just listen to the voice" for navigation help.

As you can see I have very good reasons for doing things the way I do. Hopefully now you have a full understanding of my reasoning here as I am doing the best I can given my hearing limitations - I'm simply working with what I have and doing so in a manner that optimizes my use of things and funds.
How many times have I updated? Four in one car, one in the other - both always carry current map data, since in Dallas, you are screwed otherwise. I have never seen the update go for more than $99, and buy it once, you can do multiple cars. The RNS putting full route guidance in the display in the dash, to me at least, is far less distracting to look at than a standalone, and is not related to the display on the main unit, so that dog won't hunt either . . . Radio display on head, route instructions in dash . . . Isn't that what you want? Do what you wish, but don't just blindly bash . . .
 

tadawson

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Well I can lay out a very long route on my computer and then transfer it to my Garmin GPS in seconds.
First off it is now impossible to load any waypoints into the RNS since the German VW website where you could create a file on a SD card has ceased operation. Then I could load that into the RNS. Having done that it took me over one hour to use these waypoints to create a route in the RNS. That stupid system also every once in a while wants me to enter the country I am in when in reality I have never left the city I live in.
I have taken my stand alone Garmin to Europe and once there I just set the GPS near a window and within 10 minutes the Garmin GPS knew exactly where it is.

That $ 1,200.00 POS in the car apparently forgets where it is.
The only time mine has come up in an odd location is when it can't get a GPS signal, and then, yeah, it freelanced quite creatively. Can't say I've ever needed/wanted a route that defined other than start and end, so while that point is valid, I just don't take that kind of time defining routes . . .
 

Jetta_Pilot

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tadawson, for example, I want to go around Cincinnati, go around Louisville, go around Dallas etc. Even my stand alone Garmin will route me through town as will the RNS. To chose an endlocation in the RNS is extremely difficult, especially in another country. Not so in my stand alone Garmin.
The difference is that I can create waypoints to make the Garmin take me on my chosen route. There is no way to override the VW POS.
Fortunately I did NOT buy the RNS, rather it was already in the car when I bought it.
 

tadawson

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Hmm . . . when I travel cross country with my RNS, the route through cities is variable, based on traffic. Open roads, and it sends me through town. Congested, as I get the bypass . . . . (my Garmin does that as well, btw). Ultimately, I want the quickest transit time, so defer to the device and it's knowlege of traffic to choose, and they rarely get it wrong . . .

Never took the RNS out of country, but choosing destinations in the US seem trivial to me . . .

And the simple fact that you wish it worked differently hardly makes it a "POS". Just something that *you* don't care for.
 

251

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How many times have I updated? Four in one car, one in the other - both always carry current map data, since in Dallas, you are screwed otherwise. I have never seen the update go for more than $99, and buy it once, you can do multiple cars. The RNS putting full route guidance in the display in the dash, to me at least, is far less distracting to look at than a standalone, and is not related to the display on the main unit, so that dog won't hunt either . . . Radio display on head, route instructions in dash . . . Isn't that what you want? Do what you wish, but don't just blindly bash . . .
Funny - coming from the person who started the bashing of those of us who choose to use a standalone GPS since your attitude of the built in RNS is superior to anything else is reeking through your posts. :rolleyes:

First off, your RNS $99 update fee is still more than what a standalone GPS costs which has free updates for life. So if you do one update a year that's $99 spent every year as opposed to no cost for the standalone. I was not talking about if the VW update can do more than one car so you got the wrong interpretation there.

Standalone GPS is actually safer display wise over the head unit location in the dash (this is NOT an "RNS-only thing" as it applies to any head unit in the dash) because while driving I don't have to look down as much compared to a GPS on the dash or in windshield region. The MFA display simply can't show as much information as what a standalone or RNS screen does. Also, I use my MFA display to monitor important things like boost, EGR temperatures, etc. which are very important to the car's health.

OK, we understand a standalone distracts you to no end. If that's the case why haven't you installed a GPS equipped head unit in your other vehicle? Probably because it will cost you big bucks plus labor for install (unless you are a DIY'er in which case this is a moot point) and the cheap Garmin is good enough.
 

740GLE

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Hi! New member here. Apologies in advance if this has been covered, I couldn’t find it when I searched.
Picked up a 2015 Passat SEL Premium a few weeks ago. Very pleased with it so far but there is one major annoyance I’m trying to solve and any help would be appreciated.

Sound quality from the Fender system is better than expected, except when playing music from my phone, namely Bluetooth streaming. Sound seems to “chop” off the highs and lows, almost like a TV does when you have it in “nighttime” mode. FM broadcasts do not have this issue, nor does playing a DVD. Line in, Bluetooth audio both do. It’s like the system is throttling the audio stream to protect the amp/speakers. No previous car I’ve driven has this issue, including streaming with the same phone.

I’ve accessed the hidden menu and “Loudness” is not an option to deselect. Tried messing with all audio setting, including speed sensitive volume. I’m running HW H27, SW 5382. Maps are old at 8112. Phone used is iPhone 8+.

Is there something I’m missing? Or is this life with the RNS510? I can live with it if absolutely necessary but it’s very frustrating knowing there’s more potential from the system I can’t touch.
Hey look someone with an actual question about the RNS (not debate technology hahah!!!)

I've heard if you deselect the speed dependent volume it helps, if you've tried that, i'd say it may be life as is. Is there a line in volume adjustment?

We only BT stream if the wife wants to listen to some youtube song, so we just live with the think and try not to throw a brick through the screen when using it as a nav unit.
 

tadawson

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Funny - coming from the person who started the bashing of those of us who choose to use a standalone GPS since your attitude of the built in RNS is superior to anything else is reeking through your posts. :rolleyes:

First off, your RNS $99 update fee is still more than what a standalone GPS costs which has free updates for life. So if you do one update a year that's $99 spent every year as opposed to no cost for the standalone. I was not talking about if the VW update can do more than one car so you got the wrong interpretation there.

Standalone GPS is actually safer display wise over the head unit location in the dash (this is NOT an "RNS-only thing" as it applies to any head unit in the dash) because while driving I don't have to look down as much compared to a GPS on the dash or in windshield region. The MFA display simply can't show as much information as what a standalone or RNS screen does. Also, I use my MFA display to monitor important things like boost, EGR temperatures, etc. which are very important to the car's health.

OK, we understand a standalone distracts you to no end. If that's the case why haven't you installed a GPS equipped head unit in your other vehicle? Probably because it will cost you big bucks plus labor for install (unless you are a DIY'er in which case this is a moot point) and the cheap Garmin is good enough.
No labor cost to install in the other (there is very little I can't/won't do), just not much need. It rarely does trips I don't know the route on.

And I never claimed the RNS is 'superior', just good enough for me to have zero desire to go around it. Were there several choices that I could have in the car, I might well have chosen something else. But I see no need to spend anything to change. For me, the MFD display gives me all I need for Nav, and the head is typically displaying the radio - again, preferences differ. If I need to watch temps and such that close and constantly while driving, I bought the wrong car. Oh, and I mentioned the multi car upgrade issue simply because is makes the cost of nav data per car lower . . . not sure I'd pop the $$$ as easily if $99 per car, vs $49.50 . . . Ultimately, it's just a cost (and not a big one) so it does not concern me . . . and there are a lot of other things I could drop that I need less and that would save me mor.

At the end of the day, the RNS is a tool, just like a hammer, and it works. But, much like the hammer, some prefer straight claw, some curved, some textured face, some wood handle, some fiberglass. They all work - it's just a preference, and just because it is not any given individuals preferred device, does not make it a 'POS' . . . 'POS' implies high failure rate and/or failure to perform it's designed purpose (at least to me), and that has not been the case here . . . just preference.
 

740GLE

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At the end of the day, the RNS is a tool, just like a hammer, and it works. But, much like the hammer, some prefer straight claw, some curved, some textured face, some wood handle, some fiberglass. They all work - it's just a preference, and just because it is not any given individuals preferred device, does not make it a 'POS' . . . 'POS' implies high failure rate and/or failure to perform it's designed purpose (at least to me), and that has not been the case here . . . just preference.

If we are comparing the RNS to a hammer its this kind of hammer, and yes, you can pound a nail with it (as well as club a baby seal).

 

tadawson

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And again, the bashing over nothing more than personal preference. I can find nothing I want to do that the RNS cannot do adequately . . . Your mileage may vary . . . I'm thinking more curved to straight claw myself . . . .

- TIm
 

ChrisB009

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 23, 2006
Rns

My 2013 VW Passat SEL TDi had the RNS nav system. It was the worst system I've ever had in a vehicle. I have several vehicles w/nav systems and have installed systems in the past. IMO VW's nav implementation, at least in my case, was an overpriced substandard paper weight. Here are some of the issues I had; the slowest nav system I had used to date, backup cam wouldn't come on when backing - only after driving forward (due to the speed of the system) unless the vehicle had been used recently and the nav system was not coming up from a full boot, blue tooth issues (would go into thermal run away within the blue tooth module itself causing loss of audio during calls), poor voice recognition (so poor VW disabled the feature), the outlandish cost of map update (no I didn't update the maps) and poor to nonexistent dealer support. Anytime I would bring an issue to the dealership involving anything they always denied they had ever heard of any issues and pretty much had the attitude VW's are perfect cars and never have issues. The nav was no exception. I had to tell the dealership tech (clown) where the blue tooth module was located. I have owned other VW diesels over the years and had a reasonable experience however this last experience has driven me away from VW and I seriously doubt I'd buy one again. YMMV
 

Jetta_Pilot

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Just once more. I have been using four different Garmin GPS's since 2002 and they are quite easy to work with. I can use my Garmin anywhere outside of my car! If I have the European maps installed I can use it over there. Same for OZ or NZ.

Now here comes the real "kicker" the POS in the VW's is based on the Garmin software. How did VW manage to screw up the Garmin system so completely.
 

tadawson

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I still have to wonder why different users see different behaviors . . . both our 2013 and 2015 are about 3 to 5 seconds or so to backup camera, no matter how long it has been sitting. Literally, I get in, belt, start, pull it into reverse and by the time the car has rolled 5 feet, I have the camera. I don't BT stream, but have never dropped a call, and yeah, input is slow, since it reads from disk, and tries to be somewhat 'predictive' . . . I turned voice back on, and while it recognizes me just fine, what you can do via voice is kinda odd and limited, and frankly, I prefer hard controls (but that's just me . . .) Map pricing is someehat high, but cheaper than a lot . . .

I have to wonder if it has to do with what mode you are in at startup? (Sat, radio, BT, whatever) since each has it's own set of processor requirements . . . I tend to be in FM mode most of the time, and don't see a lot of these issues . . . I have to wonder if it might be related, since when I leave it in SAT, startup does seem a lot slower.

All in all, it could be a lot faster . . . but, as noted prior, that does not cause it to not work . . . .

And if I was given appropriate $$$ and could pick any head, this likely would not be my choice. But I am also not even close to a point where I feel the urge to spend anything to change it either . . . I didn't buy the car for the NAV - it just happened to be there.
 
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tadawson

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I know that in FM, audio is pretty much instant, so not much is involved in FM startup . . . possibly leaving mlre CPU for other things . . .
 

1975 Kombi

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RNS 510 "C" with 1140 currently. Just installing the unit and there's no sound. Does not play music from CD/DVD/SD/HHD and will show song titles from the radio but no sound. Everything else works ok and I have done the long coding in VCDS with no success. I wish to try to re install the 1140 firmware. Is there a download for the 1140?? Or has anybody have any suggestions??

Thanks frustrated RNS510 owner.
 

1975 Kombi

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Success!!! I re installed the 1140 firmware and everything is back to normal now. Now to find the 2016 11M 8213 NAR maps.

RCD510-RNS510 upgrade. I had done all the long coding in VCDS with no success so I thought to re install 1140 in case the firmware had become corrupt and yes it had.
 
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I can't figure out if updating the maps/firmware would even be helpful (to me).

Does anyone know if they improved the touch interface from the earlier RNS510 units? Are all of them (2012-201?) unresponsive? I'm not terribly concerned about the maps being outdated but if VW did some work in later builds to make it more responsive, I might be willing to drop $125 on that.

My RNS 510:
Pt#: 3C8035684E
HW: H65
SW: 3696
Map: 7565
 

tadawson

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The issue is that the unit tries to be predictive of entry, requiring it to go to disk all the time, which can be slow. There was a point when the map data was reorganized to help, but that was a couple of years ago..
 
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^It's unfortunate that they engineered it that way. This unit is otherwise adequate for my navigation and music needs. Certainly not problematic enough to bother with the hassles and cost of replacing the entire system. It sounds great and navigates perfectly fine.

I probably won't bother updating at all and I'll leave well enough alone.

Thanks for the info!
 

tadawson

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Depending on where you live, and how far back your maps are, the updates can help . . . here in Dallas, things change so often, that more than two years old is a real liability. The biggest speedup reported in the RNS line (at least that I am aware of) is the more recent units that went to solid state disks. Myself, I'd have been just as happy if I could bang in all the info and hit enter and wait for the search . . .

- Tim
 
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FMinMI

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Replacing RNS315 with RNS510

Hello all,

I am looking to replace the RNS315 head in my 2012 with a RNS510. I read a bunch of the posts here and understand that I want an "E" or newer head. I also know that I will need a (9W7?) BT module plus the cable that connects the two.

Does it matter which BT module serial number is used with the RNS510 head (I see some on eBay with mfg dates of 08/10 or 5/12 and also newer ones but all have the same part number of 1K8 035 730)?

Do they have to be out of the same year vehicle? Or is it better to buy a newer BT module?

Is there anything I missed?

I do use XM radio and assume that will continue to work.

Any insight would be appreciated.

Thanks

Frank in Michigan
 

740GLE

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We had a 2012 SE and i believe it already had the 9W7 as we could stream BT music as well as voice/phone commands. I think VW went all 9W7 in 2011 and newer, my 2010 couldn't stream BT audio, so you may be looking at older swaps.

Not sure on the exact model numbers but I'd snag the newest ones.

XM should work as it should be just plug and play.

Just out of curiosity, do you just want to stay OEM? why not look at aftermarket units, say with carplay?

If you enjoyed your RNS315 for it's "snappyness" you may be disappointed with the RNS-510, we had both and miss some features of the 315, one being the changing presets, RNS will allow both XM and FM on the same screen (theres a 2-3 second delay between XM and FM) but it's a 3 tap maneuver to go from preset 1-6 to 7-12, 315 was just a jogdial spin.
 

roni024

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The preset jump on the 510 annoys me. I found the easiest way to jump screens is to use the left/right buttons on the left side of the steering wheel.

Also, not being a smart-phone guy, I sometimes listen to CDs. The 315 could hold six, the 510... one.
 

FMinMI

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We had a 2012 SE and i believe it already had the 9W7 as we could stream BT music as well as voice/phone commands. I think VW went all 9W7 in 2011 and newer, my 2010 couldn't stream BT audio, so you may be looking at older swaps.

Not sure on the exact model numbers but I'd snag the newest ones.

XM should work as it should be just plug and play.

Just out of curiosity, do you just want to stay OEM? why not look at aftermarket units, say with carplay?

If you enjoyed your RNS315 for it's "snappyness" you may be disappointed with the RNS-510, we had both and miss some features of the 315, one being the changing presets, RNS will allow both XM and FM on the same screen (theres a 2-3 second delay between XM and FM) but it's a 3 tap maneuver to go from preset 1-6 to 7-12, 315 was just a jogdial spin.
The reason to go to the RNS510 is the larger screen and better Nav. I hate the small backup view and how limited the Nav is. I read you have more options with the RNS510.

As for the BT, I do want streaming so I will make sure to get something that was made in 2012 or later.

And regarding aftermarket, I have found a number of units but there have been so many negative reviews of them, even the higher priced Kenwoods. It would be nice to get Android Auto but not at the expense of losing the ability to use all the steering wheel controls and see stuff in the center DIC. If you have first-hand experience with a non-OEM head that works great and integrates well at a price below $750, I would consider it - just let me know which one. I would like to still have the 'speak a command' option for phone calls (like on the 315) and to have the ability to play music but have directions 'speak over' it when a turn is coming up.

Finally, I don't know about the snappyness of the 315 relative to the 510. All I care is that the Nav tells me to turn before I pass the street/exit :) Hopefully, the "E" and above units will do that.

Thanks for the reply!

Frank in Michigan
 

FMinMI

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The preset jump on the 510 annoys me. I found the easiest way to jump screens is to use the left/right buttons on the left side of the steering wheel.

Also, not being a smart-phone guy, I sometimes listen to CDs. The 315 could hold six, the 510... one.
Tell me more about the preset jump issue - are you saying when you go from XM channel 2 to 3 (both a preset), it takes seconds before channel 3 will play? Or just when you go from XM channel 2 to say FM 96.1? On the 315, you cannot mix presets between different 'bands' which I hate - you have to press the BAND button on the radio to switch.

I wonder if there are different version of the 315 - mine only holds one. But that I don't care about - I have not used the CD for years. I do use the SD card however sometimes and I thought the 510 has one.

And I use the left steering wheel controls all the time; that is why I am favoring the OEM RNS510 versus aftermarket ones. Reviews on many radios say that you cannot get them all to work or work right (e.g. press the command button, it just mutes the radio and nothing else).

Thanks for the reply.

Frank in Michigan
 

roni024

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The preset issue is the screen will display six presets at a time on the screen (eg. 1-6, 7-12, 13-18). In order to get from, say, the 1-6 group, you have to touch the 'Presets' button on the screen, and then touch the group you want to display on the pop-up menu. On the 315 you could just press an actual button (top left IIRC) and it would jump to the next group automatically. It's tedious to press a touch screen while driving. The physical button was easier to use, and one press vs two.
 

FMinMI

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The preset issue is the screen will display six presets at a time on the screen (eg. 1-6, 7-12, 13-18). In order to get from, say, the 1-6 group, you have to touch the 'Presets' button on the screen, and then touch the group you want to display on the pop-up menu. On the 315 you could just press an actual button (top left IIRC) and it would jump to the next group automatically. It's tedious to press a touch screen while driving. The physical button was easier to use, and one press vs two.
OK. That brings up a good question. If you press the left/right button on the steering wheel, does it advance through them? One thing I hate on the RNS315 is that when you set up 6 presets for XM or FM radio (remember, you cannot mix presets BANDS) e.g. channels 2,3,5,7,8,12 and use the left/right steering wheel controls, it will go to 2, then 3, then 4, then 5, then 6 and so on. It ignores the presets. What about on the RNS510 with the wheel controls?

And you/someone said you can mix XM and FM and AM in presets, correct? Is there a long lag time when you go from say FM to XM?

Thanks

Frank in Michigan
 
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