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Scion T10015 Head Unit Upgrade

I recently tested out various Scion head units in my 4th generation Toyota 4Runner and explained how and why I used these OEM options. It all dwindled down to 3 factors: direct plug-and-play, lower cost, and great sound. I finally ended up with my final and current setup: a Scion T10015 touchscreen head unit that to this day, I am incredibly happy with.

Some notable upgrades on this head unit include:

  • Bluetooth Audio & Phone
  • USB & AUX Connectivity
  • Rear View Camera Capability

If you have the additional GPS/Navigation module, you have additional upgrades available:

  • GPS Navigation
  • BeSpoke
  • HD Satellite Radio

Because I only purchased the standalone T10015 head unit, it did not include the GPS/Navigation module. I didn’t care much for GPS since I used my phone for this purpose. I also did not need the satellite radio nor the Bespoke interface. What I did need however, was the ability to use my phone via Bluetooth, play my music through my iPhone, and a screen to output my rear view camera to.

One of the downsides to the additional features on the T10015 head unit is the need procure additional wire harnesses and connectors in order to make it all work. The T10015 head unit is very capable, however it needs those additional connectors to utilize its potential. Luckily these extra parts are coded by Toyota and therefore easy to look for on Ebay by its part numbers. I took my time searching for and buying these parts so that I could get the best possible price for each item.

Scion T10015 Head Unit

t10015 head unit radio - scion

At the time of my purchase, the going rate of this unit was about $150. My patience searching on Ebay for this unit and utilizing the tips below allowed me to find one that was in near mint condition for $90.

Find on Ebay.com: T10015 Scion Head Unit

If you are looking for a newer version of this touchscreen Scion head unit, you can see my upgrade to the T10017 here.

Some tips for finding a deal on OEM head units: 

– The name of the head unit you’re looking for my be called a Scion T10015, but find out what the model number is called. Since it’s made by Pioneer, you can identify the model number and use that in your search.

– Almost every part in a car has a part number; the same goes for the head unit. The Scion T10015 (or equivalent Pioneer model number AXCP-Q14U) also has an OEM Toyota part number PT546-00140. More useful search terms to use.

– Do some online research to find out what years and model vehicle the T10015 head unit was used in (this one was used in the Scion FR-S). These can also be searched for to further expand your search to find hidden deals.

Connectors and Harnesses Required

20 to 28 Pin Harness: PT546-00120-CH (needed to connect T10015 head unit to existing 4Runner wiring harness; can be purchased as part of a bundle *see below PT546-00142)

Buy on Amazon.com
Find on Ebay.com

Antenna Adapter: PT546-00120-AD (needed to connect T10015 head unit to existing 4Runner antenna cable; can be purchased as part of a bundle *see below PT546-00142)

Find on Ebay.com

USB Conversion Cable: PT546-00120-US (needed if USB functionality is desired; can be purchased as part of a bundle *see below PT546-00142)

Buy on Amazon.com
Find on Ebay.com

Base Audio Wiring Harness: PT546-00142 (the 3 wire harnesses above are all packaged utilizing this part number)

Buy on Amazon.com
Find on Ebay.com

This kit contains three wire harnesses:

  • USB conversion cable (PT546-00120-US)
  • Antenna conversion cable (PT546-00120-AD)
  • 20 to 28 Pin conversion cable (PT546-00120-CH)
Base Audio Wiring Harness: PT546-00142

Microphone Kit: PT546-74120-MC (needed if you want Bluetooth phone capability)

Buy on Amazon.com
Find on Ebay.com

Microphone Kit: PT546-74120-MC

Bespoke Navigation Module: PT296-00142 (needed if you want navigation/Bespoke, however I did not opt for this add-on)

Find on Ebay.com

Rear View Camera Adapter: CAM-TY11 (makes it easier if you want to hook up a rear view camera to the screen *compatible with only several models of rear view cameras) 

Buy on Amazon.com

Line Output Converter with Remote Turn On: PAC LP7-2 L.O.C. PRO Series 2 (because the T10015 head unit only has digital line inputs, this is needed to convert analog to digital outputs if you have an amp or subwoofer)

Buy on Amazon.com

Take your time and gather all the necessary materials and parts for your needs. I took a long time finding deals on the parts I used; eventually I had everything I needed for this installation. I referenced this post on T4R.org in identifying most of the parts I would need to buy prior to the installation.

Small-to-Large Antenna Jack & 2-to-1 Y Antenna Adapter (since the OEM head unit has two antenna connections—one small and one larger, you will need a 2-to-1 jack to convert the small antenna to a large antenna jack, and then a Y-adapter to take those two antenna jacks and combine them into one; this will plug into the T10015 head unit)

Small-to-Large Antenna Jack
2-to-1 Y Antenna Adapter

Wiring

After getting all the necessary wiring and connectors, it’s important to know what they should be connected to. Not everything is a direct plug-and-play with this setup. Sometimes you may need to splice in your own wires into connectors, and other times you can get away with purchasing one already made up for you.

Below are the labels for the various connections on the back of the Scion T10015 head unit (#PT546-00140). A lot of useful diagrams and information to help you with the various connections on this radio unit can be found in this PDF.

scion t0015 rear connections

I also made the below diagram to help understand how the connectors and harnesses are supposed to be hooked up. The diagram shows the back of the OEM head unit and the Scion T10015 head unit. Keep in mind that some of the connectors/harnesses you need to get for this upgrade, have several connectors that are tied to one another. As a result, you might have for example, the antenna adapter, which plugs into your existing antenna wiring and the new head unit, but it also ties into the 10-pin power/speakers connector as well.

OEM to Scion Head Unit Diagram

Installation

I went through several Scion head units in the past with the most recent being the T1814. So the photos below will reflect the upgrade from a T1814 to a T10015, which might be slightly different from upgrading an OEM radio. This procedure is for a non-JBL 4th generation Toyota 4Runner.

This is what I started out with after removing the center trim:

scion t1814 head unit in 4runner

I removed this head unit by undoing the four bolts holding it in (two front bottom, two recessed on near the back on each side).

scion t1814 rear connections

The existing connectors are removed from the rear of the Scion T1814 head unit.

t10015 install in 4th gen 4runner 1

Remove the brackets with the 3 screws on each side of the existing radio. I’d recommend using a socket wrench rather than a Philips screwdriver to avoid stripping the bolts. So don’t do what I did in the above photo and you can save yourself a headache of having to find a replacement bolt.

t10015 install in 4th gen 4runner 2

I attached the brackets to the new Scion T10015 radio — the bolts line up exactly. If the T10015 radio came with brackets already, they likely won’t fit on your 4th generation 4Runner, so you’ll need to swap the brackets with the ones you already have on your car.

t10015 install in 4th gen 4runner 4

After connecting everything up to the new unit; take your time with the connections. I ended up not using the USB connector in the end because I didn’t have a use for it. Also the USB connector is not a direct attachment to a blank switch location; FYI if you desire to wire it up that way, it will take a bit more work to make that possible.

Line Output Converter with Remote Turn On: PAC LP7-2 L.O.C. PRO Series 2

Notes on Subwoofer and Line Out Converter

I added in the line-out converter that includes a remote turn-on wire. This is mainly needed for the two analog cables that come from my subwoofer. It converts the analog signal to a digital one, which is needed for the Scion T10015 unit. Make sure to follow the instructions with your line-out converter as it provides details on how to splice the power wires into your existing speaker wires to get power.

The option for remote wire turn-on with this LOC (line-out converter) can be used to power on the unit when the ignition is switched on. Unfortunately, the subwoofer will still have that loud thump/pop when your turn on the ignition. If you hook up the remote turn-on wire using this unit (or hook up the power for your head unit directly to the ignition wire), the line-out converter will get its power whenever the key is turned to the ignition position. I found no way around this to get the sub to turn on only when the head unit turned on, unless you used an aftermarket head unit that actually has a connection for a remote wire turn-on. However you decide to power your sub, ensure power is off when the car is in the off position to avoid a constant electrical drain leading to a dead battery.

About the Microphone and Antenna

I installed the microphone kit and ran the wiring through the center console to the steering wheel area. This is one part that disappointed me. I expected something that is marketed as a microphone kit would sound really good compared to the aftermarket ones you can buy for cheap. Unfortunately after testing out a few calls, I came to the conclusion that my phone calls sounded about the same to the person on the other end of the call as if I were talking on speaker phone. Expect the person you’re calling to hear a ton of road noise along with your voice, especially if you are driving on the freeway. But it still does work to get me hands-free while driving; and it works better if you are talking during non-highway driving.

The 4Runner antenna from the factory comes with two wires, one smaller and one larger. I found a 2-to-1 adapter that connected the two Toyota factory antenna wires to one, which then connected to the antenna connector. I have read that your antenna will still work perfectly fine if you taped off the smaller one and hooked up only the larger antenna wire, but I can’t confirm this. If you want to be safe, you can always look for that adapter like I did.

I’m constantly attaching the microphone to areas nearby my steering wheel to get the best possible position in order to pick up my voice. It currently sits right behind my steering wheel on the steering column.

In my opinion, this is the best Scion head unit out there that is a direct plug-and-play for the 4th generation 4Runner. Although this unit is technically plug-and-play, there are still a few custom things that need to be done such as buying additional connectors/adapters and splicing a few wires as needed. However, the additional effort is truly minimal as most of the replacement is a direct fit.

I am finally content with the setup I have with the Scion T10015 head unit in my ’03 Toyota 4Runner: it sounds great, hooks up to my subwoofer, allows me to output my backup camera to the screen, plays music from my iPhone via Bluetooth, handles Bluetooth phone calls, and looks fantastic. This is certainly, the ultimate Scion head unit upgrade for the Toyota 4Runner.

Author

Hi there! I'm Scott and I run The Track Ahead. My goal is to provide helpful articles and tutorials based on my experience and research related to car maintenance and automotive detailing. When I'm not writing and not working my day job, you can find me spending time with my family and working on home and car projects.

45 Comments

  1. Hi Scott! Thanks very informative and clear instructions! Your tips are fantastic! I have a 03 4runner limited with the JBL Synthesis stereo and 6cd changer. Is the Scion unit T10015 will work with the same wiring harness as you recommend? Thnkx! Hugo

    • Hi Hugo, thanks for the comment. I can’t speak for the 4Runners with JBL as I obviously have the non-JBL unit, however I have read on the T4R forums that you will need an adapter (Metra TYTO-01). This will convert the signal that comes from your head unit to the JBL amp. There appears to be consistent experiences of volume fluctuations and various sound issues.

      A way around this would be to run new wiring and forego the JBL system completely, but that sounds like quite the task. I’d suggest doing more research on the forums to see if there is a more reliable way of getting the Scion head unit to work with the JBL system, otherwise I’d go see if an aftermarket one works more seamlessly.

      Good luck!

      • Hi Scott,

        Thanks for your reply. Since I already ordered the T10015, Yes I’ve figured out the need for the TYTO-O1 adapter. Although I cannot find the adapter for the steering wheel control volume etc.. I’m not sure if you have listed in your previous blog. Cheers

        • Wish I could be of more help, but I don’t have experience with steering wheel controls. If I were you I lay out all of the wiring/connections, and look closely at the wiring for the steering wheel controls to see how it would mate up with the deck.

          What might help is taking a look at the wiring diagrams to help you further with identifying the proper adapter if needed. Here is a link to a zip file that I’ve used extensively for wiring identification on the T4R: http://thetrackahead.com/download/2003%204Runner%20Wiring%20Diagram.zip

        • Paul Longer Reply

          Hi Hugues, you don’t need any adapters for steering wheel controls. Your original harness will plug directly into new head unit and that will take care of your steering wheel controls.

          • Hugues Bouchard

            Hi Paul, Yes it work exactly as you mentioned. I plugged the original harness into the T10015 HU and everything works perfectly.

    • Paul Longer Reply

      btw were you able to successfully install this head unit into your 03 4runner limited with JBL Synthesis?

      • Hugues Bouchard Reply

        Hi Paul! Yes I was able to install the HU in the 4R 03 LTD with the JBL synthesis. I had to use the Metra TYTO-01 kit to convert signal to JBL amp. Although the rear speaker on working their best. Also, the faceplate is an issue. I had to dremel to make the HU fit in the faceplate. It works better with a non-JBL synthesis. Cheers Hugo

      • Are you aware of any issues using this setup with those controls ?

        • You will likely need an adapter to make it work. Take a look the previous comment, I recommended using the circuit diagrams along with mating up the connections to see which adapter you’d need. Hope that helps.

  2. Alex Patterson Reply

    I just did this conversion with my ’09 Toyota Fortuner. I love how seamless it is. One gripe is the red background. I have seen pictures of the same units with a blue background. Does anyone know how to change it?

    • To my knowledge, there is no way to do this on this head unit. You might be able to do that with an aftermarket head unit though.

      I have heard that if you have the Entune system with the head unit, it is possible to change the startup screen, but not the background.

  3. Great write up! I only wish I found this a month ago… I did the same upgrade on my 2012 FJ Cruiser, and for the exact same reasons too. I also didnt bother with the nav module.

    One note:. My FJ had the factory handsfree mic and steering wheel controls already so those were plugged in using the 28 Y adapter in the Toyota kit and work perfectly.

    In the radio’s setup menu you can change the Scion model (its supposed to be in) which changes the sound power output. Worth messing with to get the right output for you. I assume this is because some model have a factory amp system which my FJ does not.

    • Thanks! Good to know about the FJ mic and steering wheel controls! For my 4Runner, the Scion XB – Dynamic mode made a world of difference!

  4. Alibek Mamet Reply

    Hi Scott. Thank you for such explanation. You did a huge work. The one thing is I did everything how you said, I bought all cables. But sound is not coming , everything is working except the sound. Coudl you please help me?

    • Thanks for the comment. I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble with the sound.

      Can you tell me if you have the JBL or non-JBL audio system? Also, can you provide me with more details on your install?

  5. What wires did you have to splice? I’m trying to put this exact unit on my 2005 4runner and just wanted to know before I started the whole process.

    • Scott Lam Reply

      If you get the wire harnesses that I called out in the post, then it should prevent you from having to splice (this is for non-JBL systems). From what I can remember, I believe the only places where you might need to splice is for the line-out converter (follow LO converter instructions) and for the back-up camera if you plan on installing one. Here’s another post on installing a Rydeen backup camera to this system: https://thetrackahead.com/projects/rydeen-backup-camera-install-2003-toyota-4runner/

      • What do you have to do different if you have the jbl system or is it exactly the same? Thanks

        • From what I understand, the JBL system is different. A few others asked the same thing about the JBL system in the comments, and I provided what info I know if you want to take a look, but my knowledge of the head unit install is limited to the non-JBL system. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

        • Hugues Bouchard Reply

          The only difference is to connect the wire harness mentioned above into an amp adaptator METRA TYTO-01. It transform signal from the HU for the JBL synthesis amp. Everything else is same.

  6. marc silva Reply

    Scott, I know this is an old post but am looking to purchase the T10015 for my 08 4runner non-jbl and will be adding the bluetooth connection. the only other part that confuses me are the antenna connectors. I’ve read on other post about needing the 2 Metra connectors in add to the PT-546-00120AD harness. Can you elaborate on this. Also, is there a step by step DIY or video to help out a newbie install this correctly?

    • Hi Marc,

      I took a look at my post again and I agree with you that the antenna part is unclear since the PT-546-00120AD harness seems to have multiple connections. I can’t remember honestly how it connected honestly because it all seemed to connect together somehow, but I believe the antenna connector tied in with the other stereo connector harness.

      I am currently in the process of doing an upgrade to a Scion T10017 head unit, so while I do a new post on that upgrade (which the only difference from the T10015 would be the wiring to the backup camera), I can try to update this post as well with some better explanation around the antenna and other connectors. It might take me another few weeks to put that together, but if I can get you an answer specifically on the antenna connection sooner, I’ll let you know.

    • Paul Longer Reply

      Hey Marc, I’m currently in the process of installing exactly the same unit but out of 2005 Toyota Yaris. It’s exactly the same looking unit but it says Toyota on it and when it boots up it says Toyota too. The exact part number to this unit is PT546-52150 (Model: AXCP-Q15U T10028)
      Here are Amazon links for the antenna adapters you’ll need:
      https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00009UHRI/
      https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0002EXF10/
      And this is USB cable that will plug directly into your unit as well:
      https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00WW52OC8/

    • Scott Lam Reply

      So I finally got around to taking everything out and taking notes so I think I can answer your question properly now. The OEM head unit has a smaller antenna jack and a larger antenna jack. You will need an antenna jack adapter (to convert the smaller jack to a normal sized jack and will match the size of the other one), then you will need a 2-to-1 Y adapter (which will take the two antennas and combine them into one). This will then plug into your Antenna Adapter PT546-00120-AD. PT546-00120AD is made up of multiple plugs, but basically it plugs into the new Scion T10015 head unit, the antenna adapter I referenced above, and also ties into the 10 pin connector.

      I updated my post so there is a new diagram I made to show a wiring diagram, which hopefully helps you. Let me know if you have any more questions.

  7. I am getting ready to purchase the T10015 for my 08 SR5 non-Jbl, but I am confused about the antenna adapters. Do I only need the PT-546-00120AD, and I also need the 2 metra adapters mentioned in other discussions I bathe T4R forum?

    • I have a feeling the additional metra adapters might be for those who have the JBL system, but that’s my guess. I responded to your other comment if you want to take a look at that.

  8. Bryce Reif Reply

    Hi Scott, thanks so much for sharing all of this. I’m a bit out of my depth in this sort of thing, but I am following your directions for my own install of a very similar head unit from a ’13 corolla (86140-02150), which has basically the same connections on the back as yours, just without the 24 pin plug.

    I am replacing an aftermarket Kenwood radio from the previous owner, and they had already run a good mic up to the rear view mirror that connected to the back of the Kenwood unit with a 3.5mm jack.

    My question is – would you have any idea how I could hook this mic’s 3.5mm jack into my head unit that does not have a 3.5mm mic input? Thanks in advance!

    • Hey Bryce. Looking a photos of the back of the head unit you’re talking about, it looks like the microphone wiring/connector may work. However, if you’re trying to connect an existing mic with 3.5mm adapter, it may simply just not be compatible. I doubt they make some kind of specific adapter to connect the mic connector to the 3.5mm plug. You could probably do it yourself if you had the connector, but at that point, you might as well just buy the whole microphone wiring kit. Honestly, it’s not that difficult to re-run the wiring to the rear-view mirror. I’ve run plenty of backup camera wiring to an aftermarket backup camera/rear-view mirror and I found it quite easy to tuck behind the headliner, and behind panels to get to the head unit.

      If it were me, I’d just get the microphone kit and re-run the wiring and use the new mic. Good luck!

  9. i go the same touchscreen T10015 from my scion….which i will try to transfer to a Camry 2006…..thanks for this post for your 4runner….. i will let you know if this works out for my Camry 2006 install.

  10. Hello, any idea what the power output(wattage) of this head unit?

    • Sorry I’m not sure what the power output is. I took a look at the head unit labeling and interestingly don’t see any info on there as well. Sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

  11. Hi Scott! Thanks for the writeup it’s very informative. Do you happen to know if there is an aftermarket replacement for the  PT546-00142 wiring harness? The OEM kit costs more than what I pay for the head unit. Thanks!

    • Hi Steve, I’m not aware of any aftermarket replacement for that wiring harness. It is a bit pricey, I agree. If you check out that Ebay link on my post for the PT546-00142 part, it will show you search results on Ebay. I just did a search and found someone selling it for $75 + $5 flat rate shipping. Other than that, you might be able to look at the specific components and using those part numbers to search online or check with your local Toyota dealership to see if someone is selling it cheaper. Good luck!

  12. Hello, if the Scion T10015 radio has it factory harnesses still attached to the back of the radio, do you still need additional harnesses to plug into the 4Runner radio harnesses? thanks!

  13. Brent Marrah Reply

    Quick question. Does this allow the factory backup camera to be connected? And does this have the maintenance reminders like the factory unit?

    • I’m not entirely sure as I’m not familiar with the factory backup camera (I never had one on my 4Runner). I’d have to compare the rear camera wiring and voltage with the Rydeen MinY camera I used here: https://thetrackahead.com/projects/2003-toyota-4runner/rydeen-backup-camera-install-4th-gen-toyota-4runner/

      I believe the head unit is only compatible with a 6V power camera; you’d also have to check with the wiring to see if it hooks up similarly to the camera I used. The Rydeen camera I hooked up had a 6V power and yellow RCA video cable, which I hooked up directly to the head unit. Hooking up power through something like the reverse lights will not work with the Scion T10015 head unit (more information in that post I linked above as to how the head unit works with a backup camera).

      As for the maintenance reminders, there is definitely none of that functionality available.

  14. Brian Gilbert Reply

    Scott,

    Thank you for all your great posts. I have utilized many articles you’ve generated for reference with my 2006 4th gen 4runner.

    My current question is. Do you think that this same approach would work with the 2020 Toyota 86 radio?

    Model: pt296-18190-20

    Here’s a link to what one looks like.

    https://www.ebay.com/itm/255305738952?chn=ps&_trkparms=ispr%3D1&amdata=enc%3A1ymfnLsLRQfiigLr7OpAKyQ62&norover=1&mkevt=1&mkrid=711-117182-37290-0&mkcid=2&itemid=255305738952&targetid=1599090335737&device=c&mktype=&googleloc=9013482&poi=&campaignid=15275224983&mkgroupid=131097072938&rlsatarget=pla-1599090335737&abcId=9300697&merchantid=6331024&gclid=CjwKCAiAgvKQBhBbEiwAaPQw3D5cBF9Mb0bK5a-KwEjhUkSR_-TfUDPa24u6rkri0_IgUQG2bES0cBoCRuoQAvD_BwE

    These units have carplay built in and I am just interested if that would be an option. One of my concerns is that I don’t have a USB plug so I”d have to figure out how to actually plug the phone into the radiio.

    Your thoughts on this issue are greatly appreciated.

    Thanks,

    Brian

    • Hi Brian, you’re welcome! Glad to help.

      I’m not sure with the 2020 radios as I haven’t fiddled around with the newest Toyota head units. After the T10015, I tried installing the next gen of radios T10017 and this did work with the exception with some intermittent bluetooth connection issues with my Iphone. Also, you would need a different connector and wiring if you decided to hook up a backup camera. I’m not sure if the 2020 is the next gen (or more?) but I’d expect some differences and potentially compatibility issues. My advice is to look online to see if anyone else has done anything with that radio you’re looking at as I haven’t messed around with the newest radios. I’d also look at the connections on the back of the radio to see if there are a similar number of pins as the earlier ones; there are also usually some wiring diagrams that you could potentially match up the wiring pins and colors. Good luck and sorry I couldn’t be of more help.

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