04 E320 stereo failure...

For the last month or two, the stereo (premium harmon/kardon with 6-disc changer and without COMAND system) in my 04 E320 has been acting strangely. Occasionaly, it would seem to 'crash' like a computer (screen freezes in
place, buttons don't respond, etc.). If I restarted the car, sometimes it would fix itself, or sometimes the digital display on the speedo would read 'error communicating with audio system'. Either way, the problem would work itself out after 5 minutes or so.
I of course told my dealer about this last week when the car was in for service, and of course the dealer told me that they checked it out and found no problems (the 'checkout' probably being the service guy switching it on and off twice).
Anyway, yesterday I was driving for about an hour (stereo working fine), then I stopped to run into a deli to get a drink, and when I restarted the car, the stereo system was completely dead. It would not turn on, there was no message on the speedo screen, nothing. Just totally dead. Sometimes, if I pressed the 'power' button, after a couple of seconds the 'Mercedes Benz' screen would appear for a little bit, then just go black again. Sometimes. Beyond, that, absolutely nothing.
Now has anyone heard of this, or experienced similar? What could the problem be? If you have had a similar experience, what was the cause, and how long did it take to fix? I would think that they would just replace the entire unit, especially on a brand new car like this. Do they keep those parts in stock, or is this a special-order-from-Germany situation?
Any help is appreciated.
Thomas Paladino New York City 04 S430 04 E320 99 SLK230 95 S320
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Hi Thomas
I dont know why your car stereo acts the way it does - but I noticed your collection of cars.
I looked up how much, you would have to pay forem in Denmark.
Hold on the your hat: 772.583 USD.
Your S430 alone is 271.916 USD.
One tend to envy your tax system.. :-))
Good luck on fixing the problem
--
/Jan W Nielsen





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Common problem. The 211's are dropping out big time. Ask your dealer about the COMAND software update which they should have by now. It may fix it, otherwise a new COMAND head unit may fix it for a while too. Good luck
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He does not have Comand. He should have the Audio 30 system.
Go back to your dealer and tell them to do the software update to the head unit and the software update to the audio gateway.

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Can they do that while I wait? Is it a big deal?
I have a service appointment for next week, but if it could be taken care of more quickly, that would be great.

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The head unit update is a CD disc that is inserted into the head unit. Updates the software from 668 to 753. Takes 5 minutes. The audio gateway flash update uses the SDS and a CD in the SDS unit. Takes about 15 minutes.
To see if you need the head unit update: Turn radio on. Open cassette door. Hold down 3, 5 , and 7 at the same time and close the cassette door. The screen will go into sort of a diagnostic mode. Press one of the buttons on the right side to read the version. If it says 753, you are up to date. If it says 668, you need it.

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