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It's been a few months since I replaced my '05 300C with the '08 300C AWD, I had to go on a 600 mile drive so I finally got to put the MyGIG through its paces.

This is by no means a full and complete overview/review of the MyGIG, just brief highlights.

As many of you know, the MyGIG is the new head unit available on many of the new Chrysler models this year. It is a touchscreen system with a single CD/DVD drive and is a HDD-based navigation system with drive space that can also be used to store music and photos.

The HDD is great, I brought a large folder of CDs with me and spent the first hour just simply ripping music into the system. It's great and there's that peace of mind that I'm not going to risk losing or damaging my CDs.

You can import from data CDs with MP3 or WMA files or you can rip standard audio CDs. While you can select files to import from a data CD, there doesn't seem to be a way to select songs from an audio CD, it is all or nothing.

The GraceNotes database is so far pretty impressive, being able to title the songs I've ripped from audio CDs. The nitpick is that there doesn't seem to be a way to edit the data, so if you don't like what "genre" it got classified as, you're out of luck.

The ripped files have good resolution, my only complaint is that there seems to be a "pop" or "click" when a song first starts to play. Albums that have no "inter-track" breaks also don't do well, MyGIG pauses for at least a fraction of a second between each track.

Playback of DVD-Audio and DVD-Video works well too. Even if you don't have the Rear Seat Entertainment system, you can play a DVD but only when you're in park.

With DVD-Video, you use the touchscreen to navigate the DVD's menus and playback picture quality is good and the matrix surround sound works well.

DVD-Audio works great and resolution is good. It skips right to the MLP tracks without the need to navigate menus unlike in other DVD entertainment systems, so it is certainly aware of DVD-Audio.

The bad thing it seems is the inability of MyGIG to properly cut in the system voice, which includes the navigation prompt voice, with a DVD-Audio source. This results in a loss of about the first 0.5 to 1 second of the voice which could mean you can't hear part of the navigation instruction down to just being plain irritating missing part of the start of the voice and part of the audio when it resumes.

Because of that, I don't play my DVD-As that much.

Talking about irritating, another thing that bothers me is the system shuts down when you open the CD tray. So if you're listening to Sirius, the radio or HDD, then decide to insert a disc, the sound goes out until you complete inserting the CD and close the screen.

Back to fun things...

Voice recognition comes in handy to switch sources, change channels and other functions that compensate for the loss of hard buttons to switch presets, though unfortunately, it takes a few words to change a station and much longer than to just have pressed the "1" button if it was there.

The nice thing is that you can select a Sirius channel by name, which is pretty handy.

One thing to note is this feature glitches sometimes. I haven't exactly discovered what causes it not to work but I suspect it is something to do with either the Sirius tuner not initializing when MyGIG initializes or if there was no signal when MyGIG initializes. The result of the glitch when it occurs is you cannot select a Sirius channel by name because MyGIG doesn't know what channels there are and what they are called.

Position of the Voice recognition button is less than ideal, it is position on the top right hand corner of the unit which means, it is the furthest in linear distance from the driver. It should really have been on the steering wheel, if necessary, replacing either the > key or the music-note key.

Aux input was also very convenient to just hook up my N95 and listen to podcasts that I download and/or stream while on the road via mobile Internet. Something here is you can't seem to select Aux input via voice command.

There is also no mute button, so if you need to mute, you'll have to turn the volume all the way down. For me, this isn't great, that means I can't just silence the system to make a drive-through order or talk to the border patrol then go back to the volume instantly. The other reason is because it doesn't pause the playback of discs or HDD files when muted. It is definitely a feature and convenience I miss.

Turning the volume all the way down also seems to turn down the audio feedback for the touchscreen, so no "beep" when a button is touched.

Now to the GPS...

GPS guidance is different from the REC units, so it took a little getting used to the spoken instructions if you're accustomed to the old-style in the REC or Pacifica.

Biggest difference is it doesn't do as much distance countdowns verbally, though the countdowns still appear in the EVIC. It instead uses phrases like "Take the 3rd turn left" which can have pitfalls.

The additional modes of being able to input a GPS coordinate was cool. I wanted to go to an attraction I found on Wikipedia that didn't have an address listed but they did list the latitude and longitude, keyed that in and the system got me there.

Another good feature is being able to add stops to a journey and pre-plan a route with multiple stops is also very convenient. While driving, it certainly makes it easier to just add a gas station into the route without having to totally reroute to a new destination.

Voice recognition for navigation functions are again very convenient. While the modes of interaction are more limited, it does work and after the v9.561 update, pretty much your only option to do more complicated destination entries beyond the in-motion options.

You can quite effectively select intersections and points of interests, zoom in and zoom out which is pretty handy or rather hands-free :)

It isn't perfect though, there seems to be a bug with using "Recent Destinations" through the voice interface. After going through the selection, the unit just beeps then nothing happens. It used to ask if you wanted to start routing but for some reason, it doesn't do that anymore. It used to work, it doesn't anymore after the update.

Also, there seems to be no easy way to use voice to get it to "Stop Routing" or use the handy feature "Where Am I Now?" both which are accessible via touchscreen with 2 touches.

Live Sirius Traffic is useful but can be greatly improved. The problem with the traffic information now is that the GPS software does not have a "smart" rerouting algorithm. I actually tested this on-the-road which resulted in my sitting in traffic for over an hour.

What the GPS system seems to do is to reroute you around the problem at the last possible minute, regardless of the type of problem.
To illustrate why this isn't sufficient, here's an actual situation I went through...

I was going south on I-95 in CT when I saw a blinking highway radio sign. Using Voice Recognition, it was quite convenient to switch to the AM channel and listen in.

Overturned tractor-trailer at exit X, highway closed.

I went back to the Nav and brought up the traffic report list, sure enough, it was listed with a "no entry" icon to indicate that there was a closure. Looking deeper, I found that the GPS was rerouting me at the exit just before the accident which I thought was a bad idea but I went with it thinking it might update since I was about 30 miles away going at 65mph, especially with Sirius claiming 5 minute refresh intervals.

No such luck, by the time it received an update that the traffic was backed-up 5 miles, I was already in it.

Having been a system designer and programmer, I know it wouldn't be difficult to build in a routine to extrapolate the potential problems that could result from certain types of traffic problems based on the type of road and the speed the vehicle is going. While it could be ambiguous on surface streets, access-controlled highways should be extremely straight forward.

Plus I would much rather have a conservative system that detoured me than a system that lets me get stuck in traffic. At the very least, it should give me the facts and let me decide.

Another feature I miss from the REC days is a quick way to add a location that you've entered into the GPS into the address book, but it could be just I haven't figured it out yet.

Now to UConnect...

UConnect functions are similar to the old REC unit except the display is no longer replicated on the EVIC. This is unfortunate because when the phone rings, you've got to look down at MyGIG to see who's calling. Fortunately with my N95, it speaks the name of the caller if they are in my address book and that voice does come over the speakers. That said, it would have still been great to have the EVIC display like in my 05.

Other than that, all the functions seems to be exactly the same as the UConnect on my 05 without any interface improvements.

Despite the fact that the car's manual indicates the ability to transfer your phone's phone directory to the system, I have not been able to get the system to accept that command.

A thing that is interesting is that MyGIG sets the voice feedback volume to be tied in with the phone volume. This isn't great because some people I talk to have lousy phones which makes me crank up the volume. Then when I hit the Voice Recognition, the system booms!

One problem that I faced with the UConnect on the MyGIG is when I was on a call and had to start my car. The system restarted after the start, reconnected with the phone but no sound. The phone was still connected to the system, so no sound from the phone either.

Definitely some sort of glitch here but that's not the bigger problem... the bigger problem was it is now much harder to "reboot" the radio.

MyGIG seems to stay running for a while after you turn off car and even when the accessory delay has lapsed. So where in the old days, if REC glitched, all you had to do was turn off the car, open the door, close the door then restart, you can't do that now.

With the MyGIG, so far the only way I've found is to turn off the car, open the door, close the door, wait, wait, wait, then restart. What it needs is a "reset" key sequence which I'm sure probably exists but just not documented.

Talking about documentation, there's also some pretty darn shabby documentation from Chrysler including a URL that doesn't work.

Well, there's really much more I can say but I'll end this for now, it's really becoming a comprehensive review and I really haven't done enough with MyGIG to do more with justice.

Hope this provides some members here with an insight into the MyGIG and if anybody from the manufacturers read this and want to contact me, I'd be happy to help test and provide feedback.
 

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I too went with the MyGig. I purchased the CHR550 Lockpick for my 08 300C. The company was only a 100 miles or so from where I lived so I got the product the next day. I enjoyed the fact that I was able to keep the factory unit, yet "hack" into it giving it the extra audio (which I needed for my system) and video (Which I use for the 6 tv's and xBox 360) hook-ups that I needed without having to spend $1000 on an aftermarket product.

PROS: Easy to install, able to use GPS while driving, extra audio and video ports, steering wheel controls work perfectly still, Cheaper than replacing.

CONS: The original cord that I was sent for my Apple devices was flimsy, it ended up breaking, I contacted the company and had a thicker more sturdy cable within 24 hours.

Definitely a MUST for any 300 owner that just wants more out of what they already have.:439:

CHR550 LOCKPICK
 

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