I admit it, I drive a forth generation Toyota Prius, but I think it makes sense as someone who is techie and does not really care about the performance of the car rather than tech inside.
Nevertheless, as you may have realized, the OEM infotainment system is kinda crap, so I decided to upgrade it, since I have the JBL variant of the vehicle, I not only need a steering wheel button decoder, but also a factory amplifier decoder / enabler, so naturally, the iDataLink Maestro is my best choice, however, they are rarely supported on third party infotainment systems sold outside of North America.
There are quite a lot of misinformation floating online regarding how these do not work with unsupported units; despite that, you can still make them work with your infotainment purchased outside of North America, here is how.
Start by connecting your iDataLink Maestro to your head unit and vehicle correctly, once they are all wired up, plug the Maestro into your computer running Windows / macOS, Linux is not supported at this point, you can use a VM and passthrough the USB Serial Adapter, but this is a risk factor and might break your Maestro.
- Go to iDataLink Maestro’s website, and select Flash Module
- Here, choose your vehicle, and trim
- Select the brand of your aftermarket head unit
- Here comes the important part, iDataLink’s website will require you to enter a serial number if you select an iDataLink compatible head unit; instead, choose something that does not have iDataLink capability but has all the same functionality (such as steering wheel controls, amp turn on, amp gain control) as the head unit that you are aiming for (so all the steering wheel buttons will show up). (example down below)
- Choose steering wheel buttons and selected functions, then proceed with the flashing.
If you want to install an Alpine iLX-F309e using iDataLink Maestro, you will get an “input serial number” prompt if you choose the American counterpart – the Alpine iLX-F309, but, if you choose something unsupported, like the iLX-007, you still get to keep all the amplifier enable and steering wheel functions, but you won’t be asked a serial number. And voila, you can use your iDataLink Maestro in another markets.
Some Images to Guide You Through the Process