With the recent increase in the number and sophistication of car audio source components such as CD players, etc., designing a car audio system which can fit in the limited space available inside an automobile, especially around the dash, is becoming difficult.
This report describes our attempt to remedy these deficiencies by employing a distributed architecture concept. Using this approach, we physically separated the source components from the indicator/control console, linking them for control purposes by means of a single data bus. Key to the success of this idea was the development of a simple and reliable data communications format optimized for automotive use. The system described consists of an AM/FM radio section, cassette tape player section, and audio control section with a simplified switch arrangement on the control panel.