Largest Thumb Drive for 2011 Stereo?
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This is a discussion on Largest Thumb Drive for 2011 Stereo? within the Electronics/Car Audio forums, part of the Interior Mods category; What's the largest USB thumb drive anyone has successfully used in one of the stock 2011 head units? I'm still ...

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    Largest Thumb Drive for 2011 Stereo?

    What's the largest USB thumb drive anyone has successfully used in one of the stock 2011 head units? I'm still using my old 8GB micro-thumb drive I used to use in my old JVC head unit from my last WRX (size of my thumb-nail so it didn't look bad sticking out of the head unit). But this USB port is in the arm-rest so I could use a full size drive instead. I've seen 256GB USB drives for sale, but I don't know what the maximum drive size the WRX can handle (obviously, I won't need 256, but I'm curious if it or 128GB sticks would be fully usable and if they take longer to start up, etc.)

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    Moderator rage-wrx's Avatar
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    I use this http://www.amazon.com/Patriot-Xporte...7069991&sr=8-1.Fast,reliable.Any bigger & I would have a hard time searching for songs.
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    Registered User SamXp's Avatar
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    Well, since the factory software can't handle more than 255 files, 8GB is probably more than enough:

    2011 wrx - usb port / thumb drive, re: 255 song max issue - NASIOC

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    Quote Originally Posted by SamXp View Post
    Well, since the factory software can't handle more than 255 files, 8GB is probably more than enough:

    2011 wrx - usb port / thumb drive, re: 255 song max issue - NASIOC
    I wondered why it seemed like it liked to play the same songs over time on random and why I had not heard certain songs yet. I just tested it and what it says on the NASIOC thread appears to be correct, except that unlike what it says (indicates 255 songs maximum if I read it right), the problem is apparently limited to 255 songs per FOLDER. My first folder has 425 songs in it and it resets at 255 when I manually try to go beyond that, but all my other folders beyond that folder still play all their songs (i.e. the rest are complete albums). I imagine there might be a limit of 255 folders, though.

    I'm going to split my random folder into two folders for now to get around the issue. But it seems like yet another reason to get an after-market head unit in the long run.

    Edit: OTOH, looking at the list of songs by alphabetical order, it's plainly obvious I've heard most of these songs that come after the first 255 on the WRX. So either it's not sorting the order by alphabetical for what constitutes the first 255 songs or random play works above 255 somehow. Very odd.
    Last edited by MagnumXL; 09-28-2011 at 02:11 PM.

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    I split up the 425 song folder into two folders and even added a 3rd folder with 70 more songs by a single artist to randomize plus around two dozen full albums, all in their own folders. All of them play fine, now. So it's definitely a 255 song PER FOLDER limit, not a 255 song total limit. Of course, it's a little annoying to have to split up what was meant to be one large 'radio station' of random songs into two smaller ones, but at least I can play them all for now.

    I still think in random mode it was playing beyond the 255 limit, though (number might have been incorrect, but I know I heard many of the lower alphabetized songs in the car, before).

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    Registered User SamXp's Avatar
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    I suspect that for Random play, it shuffles the folder and then starts playing, and then runs into the 255 cap per folder. So you theoretically can listen to all your music, but have to reshuffle to include those that were excluded the last time you hit Random play.

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    SamXP, I think you may be right about the shuffle, although I'm thinking perhaps it was per connection to the port or something (maybe it is each time it shuffles new, though).

    My iPod Touch units heat up quite a lot while playing while charging. Between that and the PITA is it is to hook it up every time I get in the car and the fact it uses the annoying station controls instead of the folder buttons, I prefer the USB option (the 255 thing is a bummer, though. I liked having 425+ songs in one directory on my old JVC HU in my previous WRX.

    I would have gotten the Sony 660BT with Tom Tom and back-up camera by now if it weren't for that Tom Tom firmware bug I read about that apparently plagues the unit. I gave up after reading about zero firmware updates in all this time since it came out (I'm guessing there never will be one). I figure next year's model will probably have it fixed. Given Subaru's HUs are made by Kenwood, I have to wonder if some or all of their units have a 255 count bug on them as well. Supposedly Clarion units do as well. It's unreal such a problem even exists in 2011. A friend of mine just bought a 2008 BMW 328i with 36k on it that has factory USB port in the armrest (mounted vertical of all stupid things so larger drives might bump the top of the arm rest). I'm curious to find out if his stereo has a similar bug.

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    I've found out there IS a firmware update for the stock radio (Bulletin #15-145-10). This supposedly fixes the 255 song limit. I'm not sure if it does anything else (ID Tag support for USB Thumb drives would be nice; other Subaru models have ID Tag support like my mother's Legacy, although it doesn't remember the position on the USB drive and I'd take that over ID Tag support any day). I'll find out once I can get the update installed.

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    Lando Calrissian DemonWRX's Avatar
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    I think I remember reading that it was limited to like 64G for a thumb drive....though iPods can be as big as you want as that uses the iPod for management.

    I do know that the larger USB stick you put in, the longer it will take to initialize as it has to scan the whole thing.
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    I'm only using an 8GB drive, but I still have a 'random play' directory of over 480 songs that I had to split in two to get it to play them all. If this update works, I can put them all back into one directory which would let me random play them all, instead of just half at a time.

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    Registered User jgardiner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MagnumXL View Post
    I've found out there IS a firmware update for the stock radio (Bulletin #15-145-10). This supposedly fixes the 255 song limit. I'm not sure if it does anything else (ID Tag support for USB Thumb drives would be nice; other Subaru models have ID Tag support like my mother's Legacy, although it doesn't remember the position on the USB drive and I'd take that over ID Tag support any day). I'll find out once I can get the update installed.
    This sounds promising. Please keep us posted.

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    I went to my dealer today and they said they have never heard of such a thing nor do they have any record of it in their computer. Seeing I have yet to find a single person that has actually gotten the update, I'm starting to doubt its existence. It was posted to NASIOC over a year ago in their thread for the 2011 WRX Stock Media Guide.
    Last edited by MagnumXL; 05-17-2012 at 01:38 PM.

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    not sure if 2011 have the same radio as 2012s, but i plugged my 500GB WD passport and it worked. I don't have a lot of MP3's though when i tested it. I just tried it to see if it will accept it. I can add more songs later and try it again.

    oh, only problem is initialization (Reading USB state) takes a while due to the large HD capacity.

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    I believe the 2012 radios are different. I think the limited 2012 Impreza even has a color screen to display graphics. There's a button sequence to disable EQ on them that supposedly greatly improves the sound (probably a similar curve on the '11 radios which would explain why changing the head unit makes such a big difference in sound, especially for the radio despite the fact that all head units have more or less the same relative power (typically 12-14 watts RMS; if you want more you need an external amp).

    I can always play the music off my iPod Touch (even without connecting it via Bluetooth Audio), but the USB stick is more convenient as it's cheap enough that I can just leave it in all the time. The 255 file limit is annoying, though.

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