Sagem (ARNAV) to Avidyne MFD Switch

Just curious if anyone else has recently replaced a Sagem MFD with the Avidyne using the Cirrus SB? I am in the process of replacing mine, and have been informed that albeit I can use the SB to legally install, the parts are no longer available and I’ll have to build the mount plate and harness myself.

I have a friend that’s going to play with the sagem MFD, its spitting an error message that its can’t read hard drive. If he can figure it out I’ll throw it back out or sale.

If anyone has any useful knowledge on this switchout I am all ears. You can email me direct at


COPA member Kevin Sandler had a guy in Phoenix make one up from the original design. His guy will make one for you. Contact him for details. I did a search and came up with this.

That solves the plate. The connector is not a big deal other than they are expensive, if you get one out of a wrecked a Cirrus demand the connector - they will usually throw it in (they cost about 350 bucks new). Any avionics tech would know how to remove the one you have and put this in.

That link pops up as “not found”, could you cut/paste the contact info and shoot me an email with it?

I’ve got all the drawings from cirrus, they are good guys and had so secrecy with them. I’m in the process of seeing if avidyne can help, come to find out they made the kit (harness and adapter plate) for the cirrus service bulletin.



Justin, I did this conversion last July… I LOVE IT!!! Another issue you will run into is the interface bracket that allows the Avidyne to attach to the ARNAV mounting holes. This bracket is no longer available from either Avidyne or Cirrus. I had a machine shop here in Phoenix duplicate one installed in a friend’s SR22 (thanks Roger Whittier!). The one they made for me is perfect. They kept the code for the die and can make them at will. Do you need contact info?

I can also share a plethora of info on the conversion, if you want it. You can call me at602-920-5400 (I’m GMT-7). Bottom line: the install process was easy, I got a fair price and am getting every dollar’s worth of value from the investment.


Thanks Roger!! I called and left a message or Kevin tonight, I hope he can help a little. I had a avionics shop quote me the harness needed and about choked. Being new to a cirrus, I was informed today that mine has EMAX, and am curious if its going to work with the avidyne. Since I bought it with a bad MFD, I guess I am not sure what all it did.



No, the Arnav engine monitoring will not work with an Avidyne MFD. There are a couple guys here that have done it and was surprised at the costs to domit not to mention some compatiblity problems (ask Andy Bressler).

It it is probably a better idea to switch to a JPI for engine monitoring and rip out the Arnav one - cost wise anyway.

Ugh, well crap!! The service manager and I were discussing it today, and I mentioned that there was no notation in the service bulletin about it “not” working, so I assumed it would. Well that really sucks. I keep running into problem after problem with this deal. I want to upgrade my #1 430 to WAAS and someone told me tonight that the avidyne will have to be updated somehow too?

Now I see why I’ve seen earlier SR22’s with an ipad dock in place of the stupid mfd.

Maybe I’ll call avidyne tomorrow and see what it would take to use the engine monitor capability? I’m assuming its probably a “module” that interfaces the probes on the engine to data for the MFD?


So**I’m really starting to re-think this mess. Aside of having a big moving map, what good is the MFD then? I mean really, its already costing me thousands to put one in and an ipad is essentially the same thing with no crossfeed.

Am I missing something?


Have you considered the Sagem ICDS 10? It is a direct plug in replacement. Engine monitoring module is extra. They had a trade in special some time ago. Around $10,000 without EMM.


Lots of stuff here, too much for one good post to straighten it out. Call me if you want more details. 623 five seventy thirteen twenty. I converted my early 22 to an Avidyne and I have helped others do it.

I did speak with sagem right from the start. They wanted 16K for their new plug in replacement, but never mentioned any additional modules needed. They also didn’t say anything about a trade in either.

Thus far everyone I have talked to said to throw the sagem in the garbage and go avidyne. I have to say, I have some angst for the makers of the sagem since they won’t even repair a product that’s only 13 years old. If it was a 25$ sony Walkman I could understand the mentality of throwing it away, but 16k (parts only)?? Gimmie a break people!!

Interestingly enough I just figured out today that my 22 has EMAX and the WX500 storm scope. After discussing the harness in the cirrus drawing with my avionics guy he told me the connector I have that plugged into the sagem wasn’t the right one shown in the cirrus drawing for the avidyne SB. Long story short, he advised me to physically mount the avidyne, and then bring it to him to assess the wiring. What really sucks is that the entire engine monitor won’t work on the avidyne, anyone have any idea if the storm scope will? My gut says no.

It just baffles me why this is so difficult when the MFD is simply a display. Surely its getting its data in form of RS232 in, and has a power, ground, and dimmer…I just don’t get why theres so many compatibility issues.

Guess at this point I am just frustrated.

Roger, I will drop you a call tomorrow, I do appreciate all the help, and have a few questions. I got ahold of Kevin, and he directed me to the guy he had make the mount plate, so hopefully that will be checked off the list and handled tomorrow.

Some of the questions I have are not only the wiring harness, but the software. I know there’s an EX-5000C, and just a 5000 (which is what I have bought), is the only difference the cirrus specific checklists? If so, can a software update be done to make a straight 5000 into a “C” model?

I’m going to do some searching tonight to see if there’s any chance of finding a used avidyne engine monitor module. While I was at the cirrus service center today one of the techs showed me a 22 that had a factory avidyne…wow, it was impressive! Especially on the engine monitor page.


It does seem like it is ridiculous. A lot of the problems are because we fly certified planes and well, you know - it’s an aircraft.

You don’t have EMax, that is an Avidyne engine monitoring system. Arnav called it EMM (IIRC). EMM and EMax are not compatible. The issue is you need an Sensor Interface Unit (SIU) for the Avidyne since the EMM one won’t work. They are expensive and in short supply. The Stormscope will play on the Avidyne. In fact more will play on the Avidyne than will on the Arnav. It is a far superior product, just a little issue on engine monitoring That happens to be expensive.

The Arnav story is a long convoluted one. Cirrus originally installed them and rather quickly dropped them in favor of Avidyne. Because there are so few out there many issues have cropped up. The data was not any longer updated since subscriptions are a loosing proposition (that started years ago). So, even if the hardware was repaired it has limited functionality. Trust me you will be much happier with almost anything you put in there. But Sagem has a really poor hand dealt to deal with And did until a little while ago support Them.

Yea, perhaps I should mention, I am an A&P, I know all to well the rig-em-aro with certified stuff. I am glad to hear the stormscope will work. I think I am going to trudge forward on the install. It sounds like my hurdle at this point is the engine monitor. I also have a 250 Comanche, and have the Insight G1, which I love in it. I just hate to bypass what could be really nice and clean on that MFD for a stand alone engine monitor, but perhaps its what might happen.

I’m seeing more and more cirrus’s being parted out, perhaps I’ll make some calls tomorrow and see if I can hunt down that Sensor Interface unit. I’m guessing that I’ll also need basically everything in front of it too right? IE probes/harness?


The wiring forward most will probably will work. Avidyne EMax uses all the aircraft sensors for most inputs. The only exception is EGT/CHT probes which are added. It is the SIU that encodes it to a digital format.

Early planes used an SIU, later planes a DAU (Data Acquisition Unit). You can use any unit from a plane that has steam gauges in the right side of the panel for engine instruments. Later they took out the gauges and put a storage box there. Those would be a DAU equipped plane. Check the IPC for the serial number switchover To be more precise but that will pretty much define if you can use it.

Yea, I need to call ya tomorrow, I meant to today, but was swamped all day.

I did get the mount plate ordered, so that’s done. The Anidyne should be at my shop tomorrow, so that’s done. I spoke with my avionics guy today, he’s preparing to make the harness for me. I guess at this point what I am curious of is if…if I can find an emax SIU, is it a mess to put it in after the fact if we get it all hooked up with the current harnessing?

Another thing I am really curious of is what all planes besides cirrus might have an SIU, I know some pipers ran the EX-5000’s. Its probably a pipe dream, im just really inspired by looking at the other guys 22 that had it…dang was it nice!


That is the main reason to have the MFD.

It is the main page to have up while taking off, climbing and cruising. It is great to check the engine as part of your scan. You can see a spark plug go bad - almost instantly, right as it happens. You can fly the plane LOP (lean of peak) safely. On a hot day, you can keep the CHTs down with an adjustment of the mixture knob - and know you have it right.

It is my wife’s favorite display as she can check the remaining flight time and the fuel we will have on landing. The big map is entertaining also. She can see where we are.

The MFD is really nice to have.

I agree that the main benefit of the MFD is the engine page.

I have the ARNAV (SAGEM) MFD and it’s been trouble free for 12.5 years. I had the EMM installed when it became available in late 2001 and that’s all I use the unit for at this time.

Eventually I realize that the MFD will fail. At that time I will probably replace it with a large format JPI engine monitor.

In 2009 I replaced the 6 pack with a dual Aspen arrangement so I have those screens to show weather, traffic, terrain etc. Therefore for me, another MFD is superfluous. It’s an upgrade I would consider rather than converting the ARNAV unit to an Avidyne.

That is a great solution for a Cirrus with a 6 pack.

When my MFD died, I looked at what you had done. However it was not compatible with a Avidyne PFD. So I bit the bullet and paid for the service contract (to repair the MFD).

But for the OP, the Aspen avionics might be a good option.

So just an update. My mount plate is being made as we speak (thanks Roger and Kevin!!), my avidyne came in this morning, and I am moving forward. According to my avionics guy the WX500 stormscope is easily compatible, so no biggie. The only stumbling block is the engine monitor. The contact we are using at avidyne is out of the office for the week, so I have some unanswered questions.

  1. Is the engine monitor software std equipment on the EX-5000? in other words if I find the SIU module roger talks about, will the avidyne recognize it?

  2. Does anyone have an idea if theis “SIU” was used on some of the pipers that had avidynes?

  3. Does the SIU only convert info from the CHT/EGT probes, or does everything go through it, includeing fuel flow?

  4. If I did a WAAS upgrade on #1, does anything have to be updated on the avidyne?