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Factory Radio / Stereo Users Guide for the Holden VE II Commodore

  • This document has been written to assist owners whom have either lost the owners guide for their vehicle, or for those whom have upgraded their factory radio / stereo system to one from a higher model.

    This document is simply an end users operation manual for the VE Series II Factory Radio / Stereo Systems (Holden IQ).
    For further information on how to program or wire these systems, please see the associated documents in our How To Guides Section.
  • The entertainment system on this vehicle may have several different configurations available to it.
    To determine the specific configuration of the vehicle, please see the Service Parts ID Label, and refer to RPO Code List for more details.

    The entertainment system on this vehicle is configured with either a base or an uplevel system.
    The base and uplevel systems each contain a radio, antenna, speakers, and on some systems an audio amplifier.
    The uplevel system differs from the base system by providing the customer with enhanced audio system features.

    Each item in the list below represents topics covered in detail below.
    • Radio Circuit Operation
    • Radio/HVAC Control Assembly
    • Antenna System
    • AM/FM Reception
    • Speaker Operation
    • Audio Amplifier (If equipped)
    • Radio Data System (RDS)
    • Theft Deterrent
    • Steering Wheel Controls (If equipped)
    • Auxiliary Audio Input Jack (If equipped)
    • USB Port (If equipped)
    • Speed Controlled Volume (SCV) (If equipped)


    Radio Circuit Operation
    Radio Power :: The radio does not use a discrete ignition feed circuit for power moding.
    The power mode master provides the system power mode to the radio via serial data messages.
    The power mode master determines the system power mode by processing power mode information from ignition switch inputs.
    Serial data power modes supported by the radio are OFF, ACCESSORY, RUN, and CRANK REQUEST.

    Radio Grounds
    The vehicle harness provides a ground for the radio circuits. The radio may also be case grounded.

    Radio Data Link Communication
    The radio communicates with other modules via serial data.

    Radio Audio Outputs
    Each of the audio output channel circuits (+) and (-), at the radio have a DC bias voltage that is approximately one half of battery voltage.
    The audio being played on the system is produced by a varying AC voltage that is centered around the DC bias voltage on the same circuit.
    The AC voltage is what causes the speaker cone to move and produce sound. The frequency (Hz) of the AC voltage signal is directly related to the frequency of the input (audio source playing) to the audio system.
    Both the DC bias voltage and the AC voltage signals are needed for the audio system to properly produce sound.

    Remote Enable Output
    The remote enable circuit is a discrete 12?V signal supplied to infotainment system components when the radio is producing audio, needs the front display on, needs video entertainment system components on, or needs to produce chimes.
    This signal is used to control the power state of the components. There is no output on radio the remote enable circuit when the vehicle is in the CRANK powermode, this is to minimize current consumption from the attached modules and also to avoid audio pops during crank events.
  • The radio/HVAC control assembly is a separate component from the radio.
    The radio/HVAC control assembly contain the radio control knobs and buttons, HVAC control knobs and buttons, and an integrated display. The control assembly connects directly to the face of the radio assembly.

    Information communicated between the radio and the radio/HVAC control assembly includes the following,
    • Button presses/knob rotations
    • Info display module dimming
    • Radio/HVAC controls back-lighting
    • Graphics and text information
    • Bluetooth Information

    Display dimming and backlighting levels for the radio/HVAC control assembly are controlled by the radio.
    Serial data messages received by the radio determines the dimming and backlighting levels.
    The radio sets the backlight and display dimming to the value indicated by the interior dimming level signals in the serial data message.
  • Multi-Band Antenna
    The AM/FM radio antenna is located on the roof of the vehicle.
    The radio antenna is enabled when the radio is turned on.
    The radio supplies battery voltage to the antenna via the coax cable.
    An internal amplifier amplifies the radio signals from the antenna and transmits them to the radio.

    Diversity Antenna
    The rear glass antenna system is comprised of the following:
    An antenna grid near the top of the rear glass which appears similar to the rear defroster grid, an antenna diversity module, and coax cables to connect the module to the radio.
    The radio supplies battery voltage to the antenna module via the coax cable.
    The antenna module amplifies the radio signals from the antenna and transmits them to the radio.

    AM/FM Reception
    The radio signal is sent from a broadcast station and is then received by an antenna.
    The strength of the signal received depends on the following:
    • The power output (wattage) of the broadcasting station
    • The location of the vehicle (or receiver) relative to the broadcast tower.
    • Obstacles between the tower and the receiver
    • Atmospheric conditions
    • What band (AM or FM) the station is broadcasting
    • Type of antenna and the ground plane

    AM Reception
    The AM band has a lower frequency range than the FM band. These longer wavelengths:
    • Bend around Obstacles
    • Follow the curvature of the earth
    • May reflect off the ionosphere (skip)

    The AM frequencies have longer range due to the ground wave.
    The ground wave follows the curvature of the earth and is effected by its conductivity.
    Greater conductivity equates to less signal loss thus transmission over water is better than over land.
    The AM band has a range of 80?320?km (50?200?miles).

    FM Reception
    The shorter wavelengths of the higher frequency FM band:
    • Reflect off obstacles
    • Are absorbed by the ground
    • Penetrate the ionosphere

    Broadcasts in the FM band are limited to line of sight reception which is typically 40?km (25?miles).
    Even when out of a direct line of sight, the signal may be reflected into areas that would be in a shadow otherwise.

    Factors which affect the line of sight include:
    • Height of the broadcast antenna
    • Height of the receiving antenna
    • Terrain and buildings in the broadcast path

  • Speakers turn electrical energy into mechanical energy to move air, using a permanent magnet and an electromagnet.
    The electromagnet is energized when the radio or amplifier (if equipped) delivers current to the voice coil on the speaker.
    The voice coil will form a north and south pole that will cause the voice coil and the speaker cone to move in relation to the permanent magnet.
    The current delivered to the speaker is rapidly changing alternating current (A/C).
    This causes the speaker cone to move in two directions producing sound.

    Speaker Systems
    With the standard speaker system, the radio has four audio output channels supplying six speakers.
    There are two versions of enhanced speaker systems.
    The first adds an additional radio output channel to a center I/P speaker.
    The second system also adds two subwoofer speakers with a dedicated subwoofer amplifier.
    The subwoofer amplifier inputs are received from either the front or rear speaker circuits, dependent on body style.
    The amplifier can not set DTCs.

    With the premium speaker system, the radio supplies four channels of input to the amplifier, and the amplifier supplies all audio signals to the speakers.
    The radio or amplifier does not set DTCs for the audio output circuits with this system.

    Audio Amplifier (If equipped)
    Two versions of amplified speaker systems are available. One version provides amplifier output to the subwoofer speakers only, all other speakers in this system receive audio inputs from the radio directly.
    With the premium version, the amplifier supplies the audio signals to all the speakers.

    Amplifier Interface? UQA
    A fused battery voltage circuit provides the main amplifier power.
    A switched battery voltage output from the radio is used to control the power - state of the amplifier.
    All audio outputs from the radio are sent to the amplifier.

    Amplifier Operation
    The purpose of the amplifier is to increase the power of a voltage or current signal.
    The output signal of an amplifier may consist of the same frequencies as the input signal or it may consist of only a portion of the frequencies as in the case of a subwoofer or midrange speaker.
    The radio creates a low level stereo audio output signal, which is sent at the user-defined volume level to the audio amplifier.
    The audio amplifier amplifies the signal and sends it to the appropriate speakers.
    Each of the audio output channel circuits (+) and (-), from the amplifier have a DC bias voltage that is approximately one half of battery voltage.
    The audio being played on the system is produced by a varying AC voltage that is centered around the DC bias voltage on the same circuit.
    The AC voltage is what causes the speaker cone to move and produce sound.
    The frequency (Hz) of the AC voltage signal is directly related to the frequency of the input (audio source playing) to the audio system.
    Both the DC bias voltage and the AC voltage signals are needed for the audio system to properly produce sound.
  • The RDS feature is available only on FM stations that broadcast RDS information.
    This system relies upon receiving specific information from these stations and only works when the information is available.
    While the radio is tuned to an FM-RDS station, the station name or call letters display.

    RDS data is carried in what is known as a "subcarrier".
    A subcarrier is a frequency that the FM broadcaster is authorized to use to send data that is not audible in the main audio program.
    • RDS functions will only work with FM broadcast stations that are broadcasting RDS data.
    • Not all FM Broadcast stations broadcast RDS data or offer all of the RDS services.
    • The information displayed is dependent upon the information broadcast by the particular station. The information may vary greatly between stations.
    • RDS functions may not work properly when reception is weak, reception is of poor quality, or RDS is not implemented properly by the FM Broadcaster.
    • In some cases, a radio station broadcasting incorrect information may cause the RDS features of the radio to appear to work improperly.

    With RDS, the radio can do the following:
    • Seek to stations broadcasting the selected type of programming
    • Receive announcements concerning local and national emergencies
    • Display messages from radio stations
    • Receive alert warnings of local or national emergencies.
      When an alert announcement comes on the current radio station, ALERT! displays.
      You will hear the announcement, even if the volume is low or a CD is playing.
      If a CD is playing, play stops during the announcement.
      Alert announcements cannot be turned off.
      ALERT! is not affected by tests of the emergency broadcast system.
      This feature is not supported by all RDS stations.

    RDS may display text information such as:
    • The name of the station.
    • The type of program.
    • General information such as artist and song title, call in phone numbers, etc.
  • The radio theft deterrent system is intended to disable or limit radio functionality if incorrect vehicle information is received by the radio.
    The radio disables functionality if the VIN information received by the radio does not match the VIN information that has been learned by the radio.
    The radio receives this information via serial data.
    A possible cause of incorrect VIN info could be the radio was originally installed in another vehicle.

    The radio has the following theft operating modes as part of the theft deterrent system:
    • Normal Mode: The radio has learned a correct VIN sequence and the VIN information received via serial data matches the learned VIN sequence. In this mode the radio has full functionality.
    • No VIN Mode: The radio has not received or learned a correct VIN sequence. In this mode the radio has limited functionality.
    • Theft Detected Mode: The radio has learned a correct VIN sequence and the VIN information received via serial data does NOT match the learned VIN sequence. In this mode the radio may be disabled or have limited functionality. The radio display will indicate that theft protection is active.
  • The infotainment system may have a 3.5mm (1/8 in.) auxiliary audio input jack located in the center console.
    The auxiliary audio input jack interfaces directly with the radio.
    When a portable audio playback device is connected to the auxiliary jack, an internal switch detects the connection and the radio will switch to AUX as the audio source.
    Audio signals from the device are sent to the radio from the auxiliary jack via the left, right, and common audio signal circuits.

    • When a device is first connected to the 3.5mm (1/8 in.) input jack the infotainment system automatically switches to that device.
      If an auxiliary device has already been connected, press the AUX button to select the device.
    • Playback of an audio device that is connected to the 3.5mm jack can only be controlled using the controls on the device.
    • The volume control on the device may need to be adjusted to ensure sufficient playback volume through the infotainment system.
  • The infotainment system may have a USB connector located in the center console.
    The USB connector interfaces directly with the radio.
    The USB connector supports both USB standards 1.1 and 2.0.

    USB Supported Devices:
    • USB Flash Sticks (Thumb Drives)
    • Portable USB Hard Drives
    • Portable Digital Media Players ( iPOD?, ZUNE?, etc)

    Depending on the USB device, some devices may not be recognized, or some features/functions may not be able to be controlled with the radio controls. USB HUB devices are not supported.
    Refer to the owner?s manual for information on USB devices, control, and operation.
  • With Speed Controlled Volume (SCV), the audio system will adjust automatically to make up for road and wind noise as you drive, by increasing the volume as vehicle speed increases.
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