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Building a Car Radio Post

Created :04-24-2021
Last Updated:04-24-2021 09:49
How a twenty one pilots song got me into hardware development as a hobby

Building a Car Radio

A song?

In 2010 Twenty One Pilots released a song called Car Radio about how their car radio was stolen and therefore they no longer can hear the songs and have to drive in silence. At this point I realized I didn't like my own car radio and figure I have these arduino things I will make my own, how hard can it be and starting my longest running project ever.

So I started searching for fully featured ICs that can handle FM/AM radio on mouser at the time in 2010 and came across SI4689GM. Its a FM chip by Silicon Labs and has just been released and I could get the datasheet for it. The datasheets made reference to some firmware bins I had to upload to it and at the time I was completely lost. However I contacted the Silicon Lab Reps over email and got the files without issue. Since then the files have fallen under NDA however making publishing this as a hobby project more more difficult.

Since starting on this project there has been a few others that use this particular chip including this project by elmo2k3 for raspberry pi's. The end result for my project includes Amp, Screen, Nav, Radio, Bluetooth and line in audio, and general connection to car diagnostics. I have planned most of this out but other projects such as the communicators and another project I cannot announce publicly yet. Once those are done and the Door Locks I plan on getting back to this.