Installation Instructions
Sony-Pioneer Wired DCI-3
The DCI does NOT work like the factory dash controls so review the Operation section before using it. Installing a DCI
requires the same skills and tools as installing a new head unit. If you have trouble understanding the wiring diagram or
you aren’t sure how to wire the DCI you should seek professional help (from an auto installer). DCIs are fully tested on a
head unit using S2000 dash controls before shipping. Wiring errors will damage the DCI and are not covered by warranty.
Be careful; do not assume “color-to-color” wiring. For additional information, troubleshooting help, or to return
products for repair or refund, see the Trouble section on next page of this manual.
Do NOT mount the DCI module behind, below, or above the HU where it can get crushed or overheated. Put it in
an accessible place under the dash so you can change the switch options if you decide to at a later date.
Installation using the Pioneer Plug-n-Play harness
Insert the black connector of the PnP harness into your head unit,
connect the blue plug into the Honda stereo harness, and then plug
DCI module into the small white connector. The supplied 3.5mm cable
goes into the jack on the DCI and the other end into the “Wired
Remote” input on the head unit.
If you purchased the “SCV Wiring Kit” with the PnP harness follow the
instructions included in the kit and refer to page 4 for more information
on the SCV feature and how to connect to the vehicle speed signal.
If you need an “amp turn-on” wire, T-tap the light blue with white stripe,
located next to the red wire in the blue connector.
Installation without the Plug-n-Play harness
If you have the Modifry Adapter harness use the 4 extra-long adapter wires (red, black, green, purple) to connect the DCI
as shown below. If you have a generic adapter it won’t have those 4 extra wires for the DCI. In that case you will have to
splice the DCI red and black wires into the switched power wires for the head unit, and then splice the DCI green and
purple wires directly into the factory stereo harness green/red and yellow/blue wires (as if the “Modifry Adapter” in the
below diagram were missing). The DCI Gray and Blue wires are optional and are described in detail on the next page.
The Sony-Pioneer Wired DCI is provided with a 3.5mm cable to connect the DCI to the head unit. Plug one end of the
cable into the jack on the DCI and the other end into the “Wired Remote” input on the head unit (see your head unit
manual to determine the jack location). Some Sony head units have a recessed jack so make sure the plug goes in all
the way.
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Blue wire - Optional Mute connection - The DCI normally performs the mute function via the blue wire which should be
connected to your head unit’s ATT or Cell phone lead. With most head units this will pause CD playback and lower the
volume to zero. If your head unit does not have a separate ATT of Cell phone wire you must insulate the DCI blue wire to
prevent accidental shorts and change dip switch 1 to ON (up) so the DCI sends the MUTE command via the 3.5mm cable.
Gray wire - Optional SCV connection (Speed-Controlled-Volume) - All DCIs have this feature that adjusts volume based
on vehicle speed. If you don’t want to use it, simply insulate the DCI gray wire and it will be disabled. To use SCV you
must extend the DCI gray wire and connect it to the vehicle speed signal wire located behind the passenger dash as
shown in detail on page 4. You can then adjust the degree of volume compensation by following the SCV programming
instructions on page 6.
Sony-Pioneer Wired DCI Dip Switch Settings
Switch 1 - Mute Control – For Pioneer, set to ON, and if you don’t have
our PnP harness be sure to insulate the DCI blue wire. For Sony, you have
the option of setting to OFF if your head unit has an “ATT wire” and you
connect it to the DCI blue wire. This will reduce the volume to zero and
pause CD/MP3 playback. Setting switch 1 ON will send the mute command
via the 3.5mm cable, which will lower the volume but continue to play.
Switch 2 - Tap-n-Press – This switch activates the “Tap-n-Press” feature
which changes how the MODE and CH dash buttons work. With switch 2
OFF the buttons operate normally, sending the appropriate command as
soon as you release the button. Setting switch 2 ON activates “Tap-nPress” and the DCI will perform different commands depending on how long
you hold the button depressed before you release it. See the section on
Tap-N-Press on page 3 for more details.
Switches 3 & 4 - Head Unit Brand – Set these switches for your head unit
Trouble getting your DCI to work?
Do not return products without prior authorization – credit will NOT be issued. All items are subject to a re-stocking
charge of 20%. Products that have been installed will be assessed an additional fee to cover replacement of the wire
harness or other items necessary to return the product to a salable condition.
All DCIs are fully tested using a live head unit and a dash control mockup. We even generate speed signals to test the
SCV auto-volume function, so chances are your DCI arrived in working order. But if you’re having trouble getting it to
work, try these suggestions.
1. Review the operating instructions. The DCI does NOT work like the factory controls and some users think there’s
something wrong when it doesn’t act like their original dash controls.
2. Verify wiring and switch settings. Get a friend to review your work; it helps to have someone who hasn’t been
staring at it for 2 hours look it over.
3. Check out the extensive troubleshooting help at our web site – and There are lots of tests you can do without complicated test
equipment. If you contact us with a problem we’re going to refer you there anyway, or we’ll ask questions to verify
you have done your homework. Customers that have done some troubleshooting in advance typically get their
problems resolved much quicker because we don’t have to ask 20 questions.
4. Email the guru – [email protected] for help. Many problems can be solved via email support.
5. If we’re unable to fix your problem “remotely” we’ll probably ask you to return the product to us for
troubleshooting. Shipping to us is your responsibility, so make sure the item doesn’t get lost or is insured against
loss. Products cannot be replaced if lost in transit.
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Operation of the DCI-3
Please note that the DCI does not operate exactly like the factory stereo controls. This is because the DCI provides extra
functions and the fact that aftermarket head units use different commands than the factory head unit. Review the tables
below to familiarize yourself with the commands before operating your DCI.
Tap-n-Press Feature
This is a new feature only available in the DCI-2 starting with revision .310. The software version number is listed on the
DCI label but generally DCI’s shipped starting in March 2006 will have Tap-n-Press. From the factory, Tap-N-Press is
disabled. If you want to use it you must enable it by setting switch 2 ON, as described elsewhere in this manual.
Tap-n-Press allows the DCI to perform different commands depending on how long you hold the MODE or CH button
depressed before you release them. If you give the button a quick “Tap” you get one command; if you “Press” the button
longer you get a different one. While this sounds confusing at first it’s actually very easy to use, and the benefit is that the
most common commands are now on the easiest to hit buttons – Tap MODE and Tap CH.
A “Tap” is defined as holding the button for less than ½ second. A “Press” is when you hold the button longer than ½
second. If you look at the table below you will see that tapping the MODE button performs the Next Track function if
you’re listening to CD or it does Seek Up if you’re in radio mode. If the MODE button is pressed longer than ½ second it
will perform its “normal” function – changing sources. Likewise, I put the Disk Up and Next Radio Preset commands on
the CH button, so tapping CH allows you to change disks (or MP3 folders) if you’re listening to a CD or it will jump to the
next preset when you’re in radio mode. A longer “Press” of the CH button does its normal AM/FM Band function.
In previous versions of the DCI these functions were only available through “button combinations” where you pressed two
buttons at once. Those combinations are still there, but by activating Tap-n-Press you can perform the most common
commands with a quick Tap of the MODE or CH buttons.
Special note on the MUTE function – When the DCI receives a MUTE command from the dash controls it disables all
other DCI commands, including the SCV function. This is because the head unit will come out of MUTE if it receives
another command and that can be pretty annoying, especially if you have SCV enabled. When MUTE is cycled back OFF
via the dash switch the other dash switches will be enabled again and the DCI will adjust the volume based on your new
speed (if it changed while you were muted).
Functions provided by using a single dash switch – Tap-n-Press commands are in bold and italics
Normal Functions (Tap-n-Press turned OFF)
Dash Switch
Tap-n-Press Functions
mutes the audio output, some HU will pause
mutes the audio output, some HU will pause
changes source (Radio, CD, Aux/Changer)
Next Track or Seek Up
Press MODE
changes source (Radio, CD, Aux/Changer)
changes source (Radio, CD, Aux/Changer)
Tap CH
changes Radio bands (FM1, FM2, AM1 etc)
Disk Up or Next Radio Preset
Press CH
changes Radio bands (FM1, FM2, AM1 etc)
changes Radio bands (FM1, FM2, AM1 etc)
adjust volume up or down in steps, hold to
adjust rapidly
adjust volume up or down in steps, hold to
adjust rapidly
Functions provided by pressing multiple buttons
Hold this button and press this button
Volume Up
Volume Down
Volume Up
Volume Down
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to get this function
Next Track or Seek Up
Previous Track or Seek Down
Disk Up or Next Radio Preset
Disk Down or Previous Radio Preset
Toggles the SCV feature between your 2 settings
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Instructions for wiring to the Vehicle Speed Signal (VSS). (photos below)
If you don’t want to use the auto-volume feature skip the remainder of the manual.
1. Extend the DCI gray wire with a piece of 18 to 22 gauge wire and run it behind the passenger dash for connection to
the speed signal wire. The speed signal is available at the Convertible Top Module located behind the passenger dash
access panel, shown in photo 1, with the 6 snaps that hold it in place identified by yellow circles.
2. Remove the access cover using a non-metal pry tool so you don’t scratch the plastic. If the cover has not been off
before or the dash is very cold, the snaps may be fairly tight so be careful to avoid cracking the plastic cover.
3. Locate the Convertible Top Module, which is a black box with a blue label. It has 2 wiring connectors on the bottom
side. Separate the wires on the right connector and look for a white/black wire on the bottom row of wires. It’s identified
in photo 2 with the yellow arrow.
4. You will need to splice (T-tap) the extended DCI gray wire into the white/black wire as shown in photos 3 and 4. Do
not cut the white/black wire; it prevents the convertible top from being operated if the vehicle is moving. If the white/black
wire were cut between the Top Module and where the DCI gray wire is connected, the DCI would see the speed signal but
the Top Module wouldn’t. This would allow the top to be lowered with the vehicle moving (assuming you pulled the hand
brake up one click), which is a safety hazard. Don’t do it!
Photo 1 showing passenger dash access cover
Photo 3 – putting a T-tap connector on the speed signal
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Photo 2 – Convertible Top Module and Speed Signal Wire
Photo 4 showing the DCI gray wire connected to the speed
signal wire.
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The SCV (Speed Controlled Volume) Feature
The SCV feature operates by measuring vehicle speed and raising and lowering the volume at programmed speeds. The
DCI has 14 “levels” of volume boost so you’re sure to find one that suits your preference. Actually, you get to choose 2
levels and switch between them any time – just hold the MODE button and tap CH to toggle between the two SCV levels.
Most users use the second SCV level to assign a more aggressive volume setting for Top Down driving. The DCI will
remember the setting you last used until you change it. If you want to completely disable the SCV function, don't connect
the vehicle speed sensor wire to the DCI or choose Level 0 as one of your two SCV settings and disable it via the MODE
+ CH buttons.
For all SCV levels the first Volume Up occurs at 15 mph. Subsequent Volume Ups are at different speeds depending on
what SCV level you choose. Looking at the below chart you can see that higher SCV settings provide more frequent
volume adjustments. The spacing between volume adjustments is called the 'interval', which is measured in mph. Higher
SCV settings use smaller intervals, which provide more volume boost as you speed up.
Note: Even though the chart only shows three “Volume Up” commands the DCI will continue to raise the volume no
matter how fast you go. Default settings are shown with a gray background. DCI-2 software revisions prior to .316 only
have SCV levels 0 to 8.
Volume Up Volume Ups
SCV OFF – No volume adjustments
29 mph
44, 73, 102
25 mph
40, 65, 80
21 mph
36, 57, 78
19 mph
34, 53, 72
17 mph
32, 49, 66
15 mph
30, 45, 60
13 mph
28, 41, 54
Volume Up
Volume Ups
11 mph
10 mph
9 mph
8 mph
7 mph
6 mph
5 mph
26, 37, 48
25, 35, 45
24, 33, 42
23, 31, 39
22, 29, 36
21, 27, 33
20, 25, 30
The default programming is set for SCV levels 4 and 6 with level 4 being active when you first install the DCI. If you want
to change these settings see the programming instructions on the next page. The 14 settings for the SCV function work
pretty much the same - the only difference is how closely spaced the volume changes occur. It is easier to understand if I
describe one setting in detail, and I'll use the ‘6’ setting in my example.
When the DCI determines that vehicle speed has reached 15 mph, it sends one VOLUME UP command to the head unit.
At every succeeding interval of 15 mph (for the ‘6’ setting) it will send an additional VOLUME UP command, so that by the
time you reach highway speeds (60 mph) the volume will have been increased 4 times. (15, 30, 45, and 60 mph)
As you slow down, the volume will be reduced, and if you were to stop, the volume will return to its initial setting. The
difference is that when slowing down, the VOLUME DOWN commands occur at different speeds than when you speed
up. There is a good reason for this, as I'll explain.
Let's assume you are driving on the Interstate at 60 mph. The volume will have been increased 4 times, at 15, 30, 45,
and 60 mph. As you cruise at 60, it would be annoying if every time your speed wavered between 59 and 60 mph the
volume lowered and then increased again. So the DCI was designed to wait till your speed slows significantly before
dropping the volume. It must see the speed drop by 1/2 of the speed 'interval' before it makes a volume adjustment. In
this example, the speed interval is 15 mph, so the volume will not decrease till you slow below 52.5 mph (half of 15 is
7.5). The effect is that if you are cruising at 60 mph, you will need to either speed up to 75 or slow down to 52 before a
volume change occurs, which eliminates annoying volume changes if your speed varies just a little.
Bear in mind the DCI checks vehicle speed about once a second, so if you accelerate quickly you may notice the volume
adjustments lag a little behind. Don't be concerned, it will catch up within a second or two and adjust the volume
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Programming the SCV Settings
Overview: (SCV = Speed-Controlled Volume)
There are 15 levels of SCV compensation, numbered 0 through 14, where 14 is the most aggressive volume adjustment
and 0 disables SCV completely. You can program any two levels of SCV compensation and toggle between them
anytime you want by holding MODE and tapping the CH button. Most owners will set a more aggressive SCV level for
top-down driving and a lower setting for top-up or hard top use. (Note that you must change levels manually – the DCI
has no way of knowing when you put the top up or down). You can also set one of the levels to 0 so you can conveniently
turn SCV off using the MODE + CH button combination.
From the factory, SCV levels 4 and 6 are programmed into the DCI so it will work as soon as you install it. You do not
need to perform the SCV programming procedure unless you want to change the SCV levels. I’d suggest using the DCI
with the factory settings to get a feel for how it works before you try changing them.
The programming procedure is initiated via a special power-on sequence, after which you use the dash switches to set
and save the two SCV levels you want to use. The programming process is fairly simple because it is "interactive"; using
the HU display to indicate which SCV level you are setting. Refer to the SCV chart on the previous page to determine
which two SCV settings you want to use, then program them using the following procedure.
Procedure: Do NOT attempt to program the SCV levels while driving
1. First make sure the DCI is installed and working correctly. Note: It’s easier to verify your programming is correct if
you leave the “Tap-n-Press” dip switch OFF, at least the first time you set the SCV levels.
2. Turn the ignition to ACC, change Sources on your HU to FM radio mode, and set the volume to minimum (zero).
3. Turn the ignition OFF.
4. Hold the dash MODE button depressed and turn the ignition to ACC (this activates Program Mode).
5. Wait a second, and then release the MODE button.
6. Do NOT press any dash buttons or HU controls until the HU has finished powering up.
7. Once the HU is booted, press the dash Volume Up switch once and verify the HU changes volume and the
display indicates the volume level is “1”. Each time you press Volume Up the DCI sends a Volume Up command
and also increments the internal SCV level, so the volume displayed on the head unit keeps step with the DCI
SCV setting. You can use Volume Up and Volume Down to adjust the volume anywhere between 0 and 14.
During Program Mode you cannot select a volume setting outside this range because it's not a valid SCV value.
8. Continue pressing the Volume Up or Down buttons to set the volume indicator to your first SCV level. Once you
have selected the SCV setting you want, press the MODE button one time. The HU will change AM/FM bands (or
in some cases the Preset Station) as an indication that the first SCV level was accepted and saved to memory.
9. Now use the Volume switches to set the second SCV level and press MODE to save it. The HU will again change
AM/FM bands (or Presets) and then exit Programming Mode.
If you made a mistake or want to change the SCV levels, just repeat the Programming steps.
1. Hint – Pioneer head units seem to require more aggressive SCV settings, try Level 9 or above
2. The above instructions say the HU will change AM/FM Bands when you save the SCV level (by pressing MODE).
In actuality the HU will perform the command normally assigned to the CH button. For 90% of HU that is the
AM/FM Band command, but for some goofy HU like Kenwood, JVC, or Clarion it will do something else. If you
have one of these HU you can see which command it will perform by looking at the Operation section of this
manual. It’s not that important, but I didn’t want you to be confused when your JVC activates the EQ display.
3. You can re-program the SCV levels any time you want, as often as you want.
4. Do NOT press and hold the Volume switches during Program Mode. The DCI will repeat volume commands very
quickly and the HU may not reflect the true SCV setting. Adjust the volume in single steps to be sure the HU
stays in step with the counter in the DCI.
5. During Programming Mode the dash MUTE switch is active, so don't press it. In some cases it will prevent
Volume commands from working and the HU will not correctly indicate the SCV level you are setting.
6. The SCV level is not saved till you press MODE, so it doesn't matter how many times you change the volume
between 0 and 14. All that matters is where it's set when you press the MODE button to save it.
7. If you have one of those silly head units that does not indicate volume levels or does not display single steps you
will have to count the number of times you hit Volume Up to know which SCV level you are setting. Just
remember that Program Mode always starts at level 0 and after you set the first SCV level it remains at that level
(does NOT return to 0) and you should adjust it up or down from there to select the second SCV level.
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