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      04-05-2008, 01:58 AM   #1
zieglerc
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Observations about M3's iDrive

I'm not sure if these comments hold true across the board for all 2008 3 series, but here are my quick comments coming from a 2007 E92 335:

- No more force feedback on the knob. This is actually a bigger deal than it sounds like, because there is no longer any way to quickly scroll through long lists (like when you're looking at all the artists on your iPod, for example). I'm really disappointed they nixed this feature, and I'm curious why it was done.

- The whole system is WAY faster. There's almost zero lag when navigating between Sirius stations, for example, and nav routing seems to be quite a bit snappier as well. The slowness was the single biggest complaint I had about my 07's iDrive, so I'm glad to see it was addressed.

One step forward and one step back, it seems
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      04-05-2008, 02:40 AM   #2
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Yes, iDrive improved greatly in late '07 and '08. I have an '07 550i and it has the force feedback as you call it and also moves much slower than the '08 335 cv I just sold and 08 M3 I just got. Great improvements to the overall speed and response, as well it does not require click on the initial discolser anymore and goes back to where you last used it when you start the car again. I have not used them much but you can also program the memory keys now to get directly to areas. Once you get used to it, it really is a good interface, I wish everyone (car reviewers) would stop complaining. The trualy great thing about it is how you can comfortably operate it while driving the car, unlike many of the touch screens (Lexus) I have used.
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      04-05-2008, 06:46 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zieglerc View Post
- No more force feedback on the knob. This is actually a bigger deal than it sounds like, because there is no longer any way to quickly scroll through long lists (like when you're looking at all the artists on your iPod, for example). I'm really disappointed they nixed this feature, and I'm curious why it was done.
Just select your audio source (I'm using a Corsair USB stick) and spin the I Drive controller. Scrolls very quickly and after a while you learn how much to spin it to hit roughly what you want.

I've just added a figure '1' in front of the directories containing my favourite top 10 albums too. That way they all appear at the top of the list.
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      04-05-2008, 07:20 AM   #4
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The two issues - speed and force feedback - are related. the force feedback, known formally as haptic feedback, used a lot of the computational horsepower in iDrive so removing it improved the speed greatly. BMW may eventually design iDrive with a more powerful processor and bring the haptic feature back.
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      04-05-2008, 06:24 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rvacha View Post
The two issues - speed and force feedback - are related. the force feedback, known formally as haptic feedback, used a lot of the computational horsepower in iDrive so removing it improved the speed greatly. BMW may eventually design iDrive with a more powerful processor and bring the haptic feature back.
Interesting, makes sense. I guess if I had to choose one or the other, it'd be the snappy interface.
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