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Sync 3 intermittent to no DAB reception


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HI all,

I have an issue with our Sync 3 DAB. Now we had a Focus MK3 with Sony premium DAB. This worked lovely and always had signal and no dropouts. Now we have our Edge with Sync 3, we can't get the DAB to work 95% of the time. It is running the latest firmware for Sync 3 and Nav, and had a master reset to boot. No matter what your do, it will not tune to any station or pick up any on manual or auto seek. Every now and then, you might tap the DAB button just to see if it will pick up something and it will, well for about 5 to 10 seconds and then drops out again.

It got Capitol Dance today for about 30 seconds and I managed to hit the Ensemble+ button and it found a nice long list of stations. As soon as I tried another station in the list, it dropped out and never came back. Local, Regional and National, nothing is working. I have spoken to two Ford main dealers and they say it's not a fault they have ever come across and want over £120 for a diagnostics alone. I have a licensed version of ForScan and have checked for faults etc and its a clean system.

Can anyone help please as we really miss the variety of DAB stations and audio quality.

Thanks.

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Hi Nev, I've come across this problem many times. You most likely have one of the following problems. - (1) you have a rear dashcam mounted on the back window - (2) the Heated Rear Window elements have been slightly damaged - (3) the aerial amplifier module has failed or is partly failing.

The fault is almost certainly not the Sync3 system, the problem ls with the aerial (Not the sharks finn on the roof)

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16 minutes ago, unofix said:

Hi Nev, I've come across this problem many times. You most likely have one of the following problems. - (1) you have a rear dashcam mounted on the back window - (2) the Heated Rear Window elements have been slightly damaged - (3) the aerial amplifier module has failed or is partly failing.

The fault is almost certainly not the Sync3 system, the problem ls with the aerial (Not the sharks finn on the roof)

Hi Unofix,

Yes I do have a rear mounted dash cam. I have just popped the covers and inspected it. It all looks good and can't see any issues. Would the rear dash cam usb feed leak ESD / RF interference and block out the DAB? Can these modules be bought on-line?

 

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Hi Nev, trust me on this. The problem is the rear mounted dashcam, the scan frequency of the camera masks the DAB signal that the HRW is trying to pick up.

Disconnect the cable to the rear dashcam by unpluging the rear camera cable from the front dashcam. Even better if you can uplug the cable at both ends.

The DAB signal should return to full strengh - The front dashcam does not cause a problem so just leave it working.

Assuming that the DAB signal returns and all is good then all you need to do to fix the problem is very carefully remove the rear dashcam off the window, and position it further back on the top plastic trim of the tailgate.

https://fordowner.b-cdn.net/uploads/monthly_2021_04/1056967390_Dashcam013.JPG.4b2b1c1a84620f4359a79d013ddbe810.JPG   https://fordowner.b-cdn.net/uploads/monthly_2021_04/1973744489_Dashcam014.JPG.9c90e805ee1559a8a417b06f5d07aef7.JPG

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unofix

Hi Dave, I've just recently fitted a dashcam on my Mk4 Focus with both Front and Rear camera.

Just take the cable along the headliner and keep it near to the door rubber seals and it will be fine.

Major Tip: Do NOT stick the rear camera on the rear window glass, if you do it will almost kill your DAB radio recption stone dead.

Take a look at the pictures I posted a few days ago (12th April - second batch of photos) on this thread and you see that you can mount the camera a little way back of the rear window and stick it to the plastic trim of the tailgate.

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10 hours ago, unofix said:

Hi Nev, trust me on this. The problem is the rear mounted dashcam, the scan frequency of the camera masks the DAB signal that the HRW is trying to pick up.

Disconnect the cable to the rear dashcam by unpluging the rear camera cable from the front dashcam. Even better if you can uplug the cable at both ends.

The DAB signal should return to full strengh - The front dashcam does not cause a problem so just leave it working.

Assuming that the DAB signal returns and all is good then all you need to do to fix the problem is very carefully remove the rear dashcam off the window, and position it further back on the top plastic trim of the tailgate.

https://fordowner.b-cdn.net/uploads/monthly_2021_04/1056967390_Dashcam013.JPG.4b2b1c1a84620f4359a79d013ddbe810.JPG   https://fordowner.b-cdn.net/uploads/monthly_2021_04/1973744489_Dashcam014.JPG.9c90e805ee1559a8a417b06f5d07aef7.JPG

Hi Unfofix,

I've unplugged the usb cable from both ends and powered the camera down. Still have no DAB. Then out of the blue it got Radio 1 on the DAB, but it will not tune to any other stations or show lists. The quality of the broadcast is not great and I did notice the the little >FM symbol next to the DAB Sources icon as in the picture. I've driven into town and done a full scan and nothing, even with the Ensemble+ button. I don't think its even on DAB as the quality is poor. Have you any other ideas please?

Thanks Daddy Nev

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I know of 3 Mk5 Mondeo's that had no DAB, one was my own vehicle. On the Mondeo, unless it is turned off in the menu, it automatically tunes to FM if DAB does not work., which is a bit confusing.

In each of the above three cases fitting a new DAB module as shown in your above photo's fixed the problem

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Hi Nev, I'm still confident that the orginal loss of DAB was caused by the camera. The amount of RF signal that the little cameras radiate out is quite surprising. There is two possibilities, the first is that the Sync syetems sensitivity has been reduced because of the camera signal. The aerial amplifiers have an automatic signal attenuation system to reduce the amount of gain. If you unplug each of the amps for 30 minuets and then do a Master reset of the Sync system after reconnecting them it should cause the amplifiers to go back to their normal settings. The second option is that one of the amplifiers has died, it does happen, but which one would be a guess.

Try the disconnect and reset and let me know how it goes.

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1 hour ago, unofix said:

Hi Nev, I'm still confident that the orginal loss of DAB was caused by the camera. The amount of RF signal that the little cameras radiate out is quite surprising. There is two possibilities, the first is that the Sync syetems sensitivity has been reduced because of the camera signal. The aerial amplifiers have an automatic signal attenuation system to reduce the amount of gain. If you unplug each of the amps for 30 minuets and then do a Master reset of the Sync system after reconnecting them it should cause the amplifiers to go back to their normal settings. The second option is that one of the amplifiers has died, it does happen, but which one would be a guess.

Try the disconnect and reset and let me know how it goes.

Okay. I'll remove power to and connections now for about 2 hours as I need to walk up to collect little one from school. I'll report back, but lead to believe the DAB antenna amp is the black module.

Cheers

 

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Right. No joy with the power down and removal of the dash cam. I can only assume the issue is the black antenna amp module. There is one on eBay for £135 from a Ford Edge and some other ones from Mondeo's for £15 upwards.

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I would see how much a genuine new dealer part is first

The ones in my 2015 Mondeo are marked accordingly Edge may be different

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Right then. So I'm now quite peed off. I've got hold of one of each of the antenna modules and the black one is the DAB. I've swapped them over and completed a master reset and power down for 1 hour and another master reset. NO DAB just as before. I've swapped the red one in the same way and no change. So DAB still doesn't work. I have noted a small black box on a black earth lead that runs to the black DAB antenna module, does anyone know what that is and if there is a fuse somewhere for the amps?

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Hi Nev, you're not having a good time of it. The following might be of interest to you: https://www.volvov40club.com/threads/weird-problem-with-dab.12442/

Taken from the Volvo site.
The amplifier that outputs the DAB band has a feed to the DAB Module (DABM, mounted behind the passenger side boot trim) which then outputs the audio signal as a digital feed to the Integrated Audio Module (IAM) over the MOST optical fibre bus. The DABM also has an L-Band antenna input, which is fed from a receiver in the 'shark fin' on the roof (this can contain the GSM, GPS and DAB L-Band receivers, depending on what options were selected - if you don't have the DAB, Nav or phone options it's actually empty).
Since Volvo actually use the Ford system I wounder if you also have a DABM ?

Will try and find out about fuses and other info for you tomorrow

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Todays update. Wife drove into Norwich city this morning and reported Kisstory DAB is working fine. Good signal and clear sounding. Now my assumption is this. Kisstory is only available as Internet and DAB only service. The Tailgate mounted red and black modules must be working as AM, FM and DAB are clearly working. The DAB signal in the city must be higher or better than the outlying little village we live in, or the shark fin antenna is banjaxed. Now the GPS and phone system work phone and that's part of the sharks fin. So where do we go now. Is it that the DAB on sync 3 Edge is just a poor quality or low sensitivity or is there a true fault. If so, where, it can only be an antenna issue if the DAB is working in the city?

I'm going to try the dealer again today and if no joy, I'm going direct to Ford Customer Relations with my complaint.

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Update Saturday 1st.

I wasted nearly the entire day phoning different Ford dealers, audio specialists and the warranty company yesterday. They all said the same thing. I pay for it up front and claim it back via the extended warranty. Great if I had that kind of money just sitting in the bank, but I don't. The dealer I purchased the Edge from is over 2.5 hours drive away and they will not pickup or loan. So I've had words with Ford customer service and explained everything. They will be getting back to me on Tuesday. So it's a waiting game now and lets see what Ford Motors UK are going to do for me.

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Not good news Nev but I am aware of how, unfortunately, these things work/happen.

I guess you have a "warranty" from a non Ford dealer. Most main dealers are very wary of warranties that are not from their own manufacturer. The correct claims procedure is for you to give the repairer authority to diagnose the fault on the understanding, if it is not covered by warranty you agree to pay for it (Diagnosis on many "warranties" is rarely covered. When the dealer knows what the fault is he phones the warranty company describing the fault and what is required to fix it, if it is covered, the warranty company give order number for dealer to invoice warranty company, if not covered you are liable for costs.

If I was a repairer there are very few "warranty" companies I would want to invoice!!!

Usually a dealer will go through the above process but once he has an order number that promises payment he will pass it on to customer who can then claim it back himself from warranty company.

Warranty company will refuse any claim that has not been authorised and given claim number.

99.99% of these "warranties" only cover "sudden failure" of a component, not wear or deterioration. Many don't cover audio units and related parts

You have more chance of seeing a fleet of flying pigs than getting any help off Ford on a 2017 car, even more so if not purchased from a Ford dealer

Are you 100% certain the module(s) are not only the correct one(s) for your Edge but/and more importantly, if they are secondhand, do they actually work

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hi TrevorB.

The car is from one the UK's largest Ford dealers in London and the warranty is by Ford through that dealers network of over 20 branded garages. It's still work in progress, but there is progress. A local Ford dealer has agreed to take the work on (warranty) after I pay the diagnostics fee. However, they need the car for the day and they are not loaning out yet due Covid. So I've to wait until June!!!!!

 

The modules were from a crashed Mondeo with sync 3 NAV and DAB same as the edge. The owner says all was working with the sync and enjoyed DAB every day. I was in Norwich this week and it didn't work for me at all. So we wait until next month and see what happens. Getting downhearted with this as the rear high level led brake light has several leds out now too. Grr. I'll let Ford sort that on the warranty too as LED lights are listed as covered 🙂

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Hi Nev, thanks for the update. I did wonder how you were going on with the problem.

I originally had the impression you had purchased from non Ford dealer and non Ford warranty

Now you have clarified, I can't see any reason why it should not be sorted on Fords warranty. Best of luck, hope it is sorted to your satisfaction - please let us know

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