I know this has been done before and Audi even sells HD's with the Audi brand, but I thought I would post up all the parts that I used for my fellow Q owners. For $65.98 all-in, I don't think you can beat it with a stick.
- I saw that a Seagate expansion drive was on sale on Amazon, so I picked one up. "Seagate Expansion 1TB Portable External Hard Drive USB 3.0 (STBX1000101)" for $58.29.
- I tried cheaping out, and instead of buying the official Audi USB adapter, I bought a "VicTsing AMI MMI Music Cable." It cost $7.69 and it works perfectly. I went on Amazon to provide a link here and it looks like it is not available anymore from Amazon (I literally bought this 2 days ago so it must be popular). I would try ebay for it. It was sold by VicDirect.
- format the drive to FAT32 using any of the free available utilities out there. I went to Download.com and pulled down the HP USB Disc Storage Format tool v2.2.3.
- put all of your tunes onto the drive. I used the following structure: \\Music\(artist)\(album)\(songs) but I don't think it matters.
- connect the drive to your MMI using the supplied cable and enjoy your music
- something I didn't see in my travels through the board (but is probably out there somewhere): an easy way to recreate iTunes playlists for use on the drive. iTunes playlists are very easy to recreate. What I did was create a folder on my desktop with the name of the playlist. Drag and drop the songs from the iTunes playlist (in iTunes) into the folder on the desktop. Move the folder to the expansion drive.
- none so far. I haven't run into any song limits or incompatible mp3's. I tested a few albums at the beginning, middle and end of my collection and didn't have any playback problems.
The best part about all of this is that my album art is back. I was using a 160GB ipod classic which is not compatible with the red grommetted cable - so no album art. Now I have 280GB of music and album art.