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jeebustrain

Heat issues - 8100

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Hi all. I've had my 8100 NEX for just about 2 years now, loaded in my 2015 Subaru Forester. Overall, I like it a lot. I used to have issues with playing large amounts of mp3s, but ever since I was able to get a 256GB SSD onto my phone, I can control everything with Android Auto and I'm pretty happy.

 

Anyway, onto my question. I live in St Louis. It gets pretty warm here in the summer (90s and up usually). Plus, the dashboard is black. I try to use a winshield shade when I park, but it's still really warm when I get in the car (sometimes near 100 degrees). Being cooped up in the office all day though, I usually like to drive home with just the windows down. The problem though, is that the NEX appears to be sensitive to high temperatures. I never have this problem in the winter, but summertime, I get all sorts of glitches in Android Auto, like the voice command not understanding me, the mapping app freezing, music randomly skipping or stopping playing. It also makes my phone go nuts (my phone ends up getting really hot) and I usually end up having to reboot it while I drive. I can usually fix it by turning on the AC, presumably because the vents go right over the top of the HU. It usually calms down in about 5-6 minutes.

 

Now, I've worked in IT for nearly twenty years and I understand what heat does to computers. But it would seem that an embedded system like a car HU would be able to manage this sort of thing better. There's not a ton, but there is a bit of air space behind the HU (I put it in myself). I've contemplated trying to rig up an active cooling system with a couple of small fans, but I figured I'd ask the collective if this was something that I should bother with.

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The same exact thing happens on my 4100 NEX when using Android Auto. Phone (Moto Z) gets really hot, voice recognition goes to crap and AA glitches and lags. Im pretty sure the issue is the phone thermally throttling though, not the NEX, because the rest of the sources (iPod, HD Radio, etc) function perfectly fine and the phone still misbehaves after disconnecting from the radio. I think the combination of the battery charging, GPS, and ambient temperature in the summer cause the phone to overheat and lag. Best bet is to keep the phone out of the sun and/or in front of a vent with the A/C on.

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Most consumer grade electronics have a thermal limit of 150F.  That pertains to things like capacitors, regulators, and ARM processors etc......  Most head units have heat sinks and thermal holes on the chassis, some have fans in the back.  

 

You could buy something like this and install it under the head unit somewhere, or in a side panel inside the dash that leads to your footwell, as long as you can get air behind the head unit.  Just cut a hole and screw this one in, it'll look like a clean install.  https://www.amazon.com/AC-Infinity-AIRPLATE-Cooling-Cabinets/dp/B009COAEUG/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1499480717&sr=8-8&keywords=ac+infinity+fan

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The same exact thing happens on my 4100 NEX when using Android Auto. Phone (Moto Z) gets really hot, voice recognition goes to crap and AA glitches and lags. Im pretty sure the issue is the phone thermally throttling though, not the NEX, because the rest of the sources (iPod, HD Radio, etc) function perfectly fine and the phone still misbehaves after disconnecting from the radio. I think the combination of the battery charging, GPS, and ambient temperature in the summer cause the phone to overheat and lag. Best bet is to keep the phone out of the sun and/or in front of a vent with the A/C on.

 

That's funny. That's the exact phone I have. Now that I think about it, I don't having this issue with the Samsung Note 7 I had last year (before they made me return it). And the Note 3 I had before that didn't have the issue either. Maybe there is an issue with Android Auto on that particular phone? 

 

A few times I've shoved the phone in one of the vents to cool it off.

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