It's a long read but it is a combination of a bunch of posts on another site indicating what I've tried and ruled out.
No audio, from anything, cd, fm, am, or tape at times. Thinking amp.
I have a 2001 LS430 UL with the ML ( Mark Levinson ) audio, I've bypassed the Lexus link by switching the connectors in the trunk on the right side trunk floor where the DVD Navigation unit is, there are 4 connectors 2 male 2 female that I picked up from another post http://www.clublexus.com/forums/ls43...ror-msg-4.html
that said to cross connect them in the trunk floor on the right which essentially bypasses the LL system, it is its own harness that is connected to itself when doing this, to rule out the LL system causing issues (muting or anything else) plus it gets rid of the annoying voice that talks to you and tells you there's an error with the system but it does disable the memo functionality on the sunglass holder.
When the issue occurs on mine the ASL button disappears, the midrange adjustment under sound disappears, and none of the options under the sound option are adjustable. I've searched this and other sites to try and find the diagnostic procedures to get in to test the audio when it is happening through the navigation window or whatever and can't seem to either find the right procedure or any real fixes. The buttons on the display disappearing concern me, the exact issue was posted here with no resolution, http://www.clublexus.com/forums/ls430-forum/389853-automatic-sound-levelizer-asl-button-disappeared-and-nav-disc-q.html
. I saw in a different post by Lexusthai that his amp wasn't producing sound and it would've cost $900 to fix, so I'm assuming that issue was the amp. http://www.clublexus.com/forums/ls43...n-problem.html
The NAV systems voice still works when the radio is not working, this only indicates that the NAV system is bypassing the amp, from what I understand the only thing that happens is the left front speaker gets muted so the sound can come through from the NAV Unit.
After the car sits for a while, most times I can go out to it and start it up and the radio works, if I drive for a while or just have the ignition on for a while in the driveway and turn the ignition off and back on the audio behaves like I said above. Most times if it doesn't come on right away it will take 1-20 minutes to turn on and everything functions like it should, more reason for me to think it is the amp, but I'm not sure if the amp was malfunctioning if it would cause the stuff in the sound menu under audio to become unresponsive/disappear.
When it is cold 30's or below it functions pretty normally it occasionally will take 10 seconds or so to come on when it is 20's or below, when the temp goes up it seems to work more sporadically but usually the first time of the day when it is cold it works fine, by the time I get to work and it's warmed up, I can turn it off and right back on and it doesn't function, or it will, there is no real rhyme or reason to it, but it works much less consistently when it is warmed up. More evidence that would lead me to the amp being the cause.
Sometimes I can't get it to come on even if it sits for a while, it has a mind of its own, I drove 40 minutes home from work the other day and had a stop in between and it still didn't come to life, other times I'll drive with it fully warmed up and it will come on 20 seconds - 20 minutes, again pushing me towards the Amp, just those buttons got me wondering.
There are no signs of water leaks no stains/deposits in the trunk area so I've ruled out a short due to moisture.
This car does not have the Cellular phone module, the only thing on the left truck floor is a power dist block with some fuses and relays.
I still think it's the amp, seems on other posts even though most are incomplete that the loss of functionality in the sound menu might indicate an amp issue, although if it's an internal thing in the amp I would imagine that it could be fixed but what the hell do I know? An intermittent fault like this would be impossible to find internally if it works when it wants to unless the connection is obviously a bad solder joint, but in this situation I'm sure it won't be that obvious otherwise a light tap on the case or wiggling the connectors might make it work.
I went ahead and disconnected the battery for a while to reset the system, and it came up with the configuration screen or something like that where everything seems to reset, and the audio issue is still happening, no change at all, stuff still disappears, and it won't come on right away, it has a mind of its own. still wondering if anyone else has dealt with the same issue and how it was resolved, someone who lost the ASL button and the options under sound. I really don't want to buy an amp when it might not fix the issue but it will probably end up coming down to that.
The ML no audio issue seems to be a common symptom with these amps, it does seem to be more problematic when it has been on for a while and warmed up.
I've tried multiple procedures to try and get in to the Diagnostic Mode on the LCD screen so I can check the audio or anything for that matter and the procedures that I've dug up on here or other sites don't seem to work.
Anyone know how to put an 01 LS430 UL with Mark Levinson, into diagnostic mode?
Start car, turn on park lights, hold down both climate and audio buttons and then turn park lights off, on, off, on, off
I've also tried the Lexus TSIB from somewhere it's attached in the PDF page 3 of this file 2001 LS430 Audio Diagram and TSIB.pdf
from somewhere (sorry not sure who posted it originally or where I got it so I can't give credit) to get into test mode and it references - cars with navigation system and external amplifier, press and hold the info switch on the navigation display while cycling the tail lights on and off three times.
no go because there is not info button on the NAV screen, the only information button there is is when you go into options I think, I've tried that and cycling - no go. I've tried all the combinations with the key on acc or with the car running.
Am I using the right procedure to get into diag mode? Is it possible that something else is at fault with the module that allows test mode to happen? Rather than the amp.
I've been researching this car and the audio system for days, I've read most of the owners manual, and I've tried various things.
I got in the car this morning and it was colder last night than it had been in a week or two, started the car and the radio took about 10 seconds to come on, so the problem also exists when it's cold.
In light of this I think I am more or less convinced that the amp is the issue, probably just a cold solder joint or something, although the disappearing buttons under audio concern me, but not knowing the internal design or what exactly each wire going into the amp does I can't say that it will or won't cause those buttons to disappear.
The mute wires have no effect on the issue and from what Jainla on another site said it didn't change the buttons available either, I used page 2 of this pdf 2001 LS430 Audio Diagram and TSIB.pdf
that I got from 1990LS400 on another site to figure out and disable each mute wire going to the amp with no improvement, the amp connections are correct on the diagram, just match the colors and pin count to figure out which connector it is, it is not top to bottom like the diagram.
I have verified that the hot at all times is in fact hot at all times and I also verified that the Grounds are all good, the ACC is hot with the ignition in ACC, or On. So either a signal isn't getting to the amp from the player up front or the tuner in the rear or there is just an intermittent connection that is somewhat temperature sensitive inside the amplifier. There might actually be a relay or some other chip or something that functions similarly that is sticking inside the amp but without internal diagrams there would probably be no way to figure it out, at least I wouldn't be able to figure it out.
Also, thinking from the perspective of a Dealer and what they would do, I know the first thing they would say/do is replace the Amp so unless someone else has any feedback or ideas, I'm going to replace the Amp, cross my fingers, and hope that it fixes it.
Thanks in advance to anyone that responds. It's frustrating as hell to research and find posts that explain the exact same thing you are dealing with, with no real follow up or resolution, that's why I figured I would post all of this stuff here and when I get it resolved post the fix.