Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 10:21 a.m.

Well the wife's little beach buggy has a gripe. The stereo is going out. The volume knob won't consistantly control the volume. Add that with no aux jack and thw wife wants a new stereo. She likes the little thing and the ground clearance and size work well in New Orleans.

So here is what we want in an aftermarket stereo.

iPhone compatibility for hands free phone calls and streaming audio
HD radio
Looks somewhat subdued due to New Orleans.

I have done the Crutchfield thing and haven't found something I like. So any suggestions would be appriciated.

It is a Double Din with the 6 speaker layout

Sept. 7, 2014 10:35 a.m.

What's your price range?

Also, you could go Single Din with an adapter kit that has a pocket underneath the stereo.

Dusterbd13 Dork
Sept. 7, 2014 10:47 a.m.

I love my jvc decks. Only box im not sure if they tick is iPhone. Only because I don't own one. ButI tthink they are compatable.

Crutchfield will be your friend.

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 11:37 a.m.

Can't believe I am saying this but Crutchfield has lost a step. They used to be my go to place but their options seem to have been limited.

I don't care if it is double or single din. I am even looking at marine radios due to the fact I can get a weather band.

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 11:38 a.m.

Does anyone know anything about Pyle or Boss units?

Sept. 7, 2014 12:15 p.m.

I'd ditch the double DIN in favor of a single DIN with a cubby hole. Alpine, and occasionally Clarion have been my go to brands for the past couple decades. I've never been disappointed with anything from Alpine. However, I recently bought a used Kenwood Excelon on eBay that has everything but the HD Radio, I should have it first part of next week. I was originally shopping for a mechless head unit, no CD player, just aux-in, Bluetooth streaming/hands free, USB/SD, and at least a Sub preout, but most of the modern head units look like something out of Star Trek. I don't want to feel like I'm in a futuristic disco every time I turn my radio on.

I put a Kenwood CD changer in my sisters car long ago, and it worked great, so for about 1/2 the price of the other new head units I was considering, I thought I'd give the used '12 model Kenwood a shot.

I don't know if they've improved any but in the late '90s early '00s Pyle & Boss were the junk pawn shop brands.

pres589 UltraDork
Sept. 7, 2014 1:10 p.m.

As far as I can tell Pyle and Boss head units are still junk brands.

I'm in a similar situation and the Alpine CDE-HD148 has me most interested. I'm headed to Best Buy to check one out in person this coming week. You can see it here; http://www.crutchfield.com/S-8ORjPyiN8JQ/p_500HD148BT/Alpine-CDE-HD148BT.html

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 1:53 p.m.
bigdaddylee82 wrote: I don't want to feel like I'm in a futuristic disco every time I turn my radio on.

Teh E36 M3 SuperDork
Sept. 7, 2014 1:53 p.m.

I have a couple kenwood single din's- they are the simplest no BS that I could find with HD radio and front USB and Aux ports. Well priced and work pretty good. Without consulting one another, my bro and I picked the same one. x697 or something like that.

Sept. 7, 2014 3:14 p.m.

In reply to Teh E36 M3:

KDC-X696 is what I bought, lightly used, hopefully I won't hate it.

  • Lee
DrBoost UltimaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 3:52 p.m.

Did I miss your price point?
I think Alpine is the king. But since you mentioned iPhone, I have a Pioneer AppRadio 3. It basically turns your double din hole into your iPhone. It works well.

BoxheadTim UltimaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 4:55 p.m.

Another vote for single DIN. As far as non-blingy goes, the last time I looked Crutchfield had a couple of Blaupunkt CD receivers that looked pretty restrained.

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 5:10 p.m.

Features first, price second. I don't want a $1k head unit, but if I need to spend a couple of $100 I will. There is a the SPH-DA210 and the now discontinued model SPH-DA110

DrBoost UltimaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 6:58 p.m.
Flight Service wrote: Features first, price second. I don't want a $1k head unit, but if I need to spend a couple of $100 I will. There is a the SPH-DA210 and the now discontinued model SPH-DA110

That's what I have, the 210. It's a nice unit, the capacitive touch screen works well and the apps are useful. It's not HD ready, but I'll trade that off for the apps like WAZE and such. It's like having an iPad mini in your dash.

Woody MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:15 p.m.

Does your RAV4 stereo look like this?

My Tacoma has something similar and I was thinking about a replacement too, but how do you accomplish that with something that's fitted to the dash like these things?

old_ Reader
Sept. 7, 2014 7:28 p.m.
Woody wrote: Does your RAV4 stereo look like this? My Tacoma has something similar and I was thinking about a replacement too, but how do you accomplish that with something that's fitted to the dash like these things?

There is a company called metra that makes kits for that. They have one for just about every car out there.

http://www.metraonline.com/products

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:31 p.m.

nope, this is it.

bentwrench HalfDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:32 p.m.

Pioneer Super Tuner or nothing for me.

BAMF HalfDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:37 p.m.

I put an Alpine CDE-143BT into my wife's '04 Jeep last year. It's not 100% perfect, but it's excellent for $130 (with accessories & free shipping).

Our biggest gripes with the unit are that when shuffling all songs on an iPhone it will start with the first song in the list alphabetically rather than resuming the most recent song. Also, it's not great about switching bluetooth connections between phones. It picks a favorite & chooses it repeatedly. I don't pair my phone with it for this reason. Full disclosure, I paired my phone first after installing for testing purposes. Maybe that's the problem.

As a tip, figure out optimum microphone placement or the call sound will be utter garbage. It's quite decent if you get placement figured out.

Woody MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:37 p.m.

In reply to old_:

Good to know. Thanks.

Woody MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:43 p.m.
old_ wrote:
Woody wrote: Does your RAV4 stereo look like this? My Tacoma has something similar and I was thinking about a replacement too, but how do you accomplish that with something that's fitted to the dash like these things?

There is a company called metra that makes kits for that. They have one for just about every car out there.

http://www.metraonline.com/products

Wow, that seems like a crazy amount of engineering for only $25.

Woody MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 7:45 p.m.

It also highlights how out of touch I am with sound systems. I pretty much just listen to AM or Sirius.

Curmudgeon MegaDork
Sept. 7, 2014 8:00 p.m.

I bought this:

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_500SXM145B/Alpine-CDE-SXM145BT.html?tp=5684

for the Xterra. Been pleased so far but as far as iPhone control, couldn't tell ya because I don't store music on my phone. The integrated Sirius is nice, it also has subwoofer level control built in which will come in handy when I get around to adding amps and stuff.

stanger_missle HalfDork
Sept. 7, 2014 8:40 p.m.

All the double-din to single-din conversion kits I've seen looked out of place. I ended up with a basic double-din for my Wrangler. I bought a JVC KW-R800BT.

I wanted a rear usb input so I can hide my iPod in the glove box. I also wanted a head unit where I could match the stock instrument illumination color. I didn't want a touchscreen/DVD/Nav unit because it would just be theft bait in a soft top Jeep.

It's alright but I miss my Pioneer FH-P8000BT. It beat the JVC in every area except that it didn't have a dimmer. It was absolutely blinding at night. I have E36 M3ty night vision as it is and it was so irritating that I had to shut the display off at night. Pic of the old Pioneer:

Flight Service MegaDork
Sept. 8, 2014 9:10 p.m.

I had a kenwood back in the day and lost the security code to it Kenwood couldn't have been worse on the customer service side. Rude.

I have always liked Pioneer and Alpine.

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