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Old 05-11-2011, 09:52 PM   #1
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Head Unit Suggestions

Hey everyone. It looks like my stock head unit in my 04 TJ is starting is give up on me. It no longer plays any of my CDs and says on the screen "Err". I've even tried burning new ones. Anyways, I think ill take this as an excuse to upgrade. What kind of head units are you guys running? I want it to be fairly straight forward usage, be able to play songs via mass storage device, have a removeable faceplate, and be compatible with my stock speakers. Fire away!

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Old 05-11-2011, 10:24 PM   #2
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Hey everyone. It looks like my stock head unit in my 04 TJ is starting is give up on me. It no longer plays any of my CDs and says on the screen "Err". I've even tried burning new ones. Anyways, I think ill take this as an excuse to upgrade. What kind of head units are you guys running? I want it to be fairly straight forward usage, be able to play songs via mass storage device, have a removeable faceplate, and be compatible with my stock speakers. Fire away!
Love my alpine It's been in the Jeep a couple years now. NO CD player. It has a cord out the back that I lay in the glove box with a USB drive on it.
If you listen to a lot of radio its not the best unit to have. Changing stations requires about 4 button pushes. But since going to a USB drive with 700+ songs on it, I rarely listen to radio anymore.
Alpine iDA-X200 (idax200) In-dash Digital Media Receiver with

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Old 05-12-2011, 09:16 AM   #3
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That's nearly the exact one that my brother has in his truck. I think his may be a slightly older model though. I know what you mean about taking 4 clicks to change the radio station. I guess if I got one like this I could fill up my iPod that I don't use anymore and use that, or do like you said and just fill up a USB flash drive with some tunes. How does it handle the file names? Does it read the song title from the song's tag or does it just read the [filename].mp3?
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Old 05-12-2011, 09:32 AM   #4
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I put in this Kenwood KDC-MP745U last summer (Late June, I believe), it's fantastic!
I have had the same problems with CD's in the past - "Err" is not an entertaining display when you're driving, lol!

This one has CD and accepts a thumb drive. I have 4 GB of music loaded on it, and it works flawlessly.

The one I linked appears to be a refurb, so this specific deck may be getting hard to find. I do recommend something with an external USB port, though. I keep my flash drive in the glovebox.
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Old 05-12-2011, 09:35 AM   #5
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I have the basic Sony explode which works pretty good.
Jeep In-dash Players - Quadratec

Crutchfield has a good selection and the car fitter is helpful (although their prices aren't the best) which will help you narrow down to one you like. I'm looking into radios with the HD tuner for my next upgrade. There are a few good stations in CT that I can only listen to on the HD radio in my garage.

After that I would say the radios with a rear usb are handy if you want to hide your thumb drive or I pod out of the way, or one with the front USB and just remember to unplug it and take it with you or put it away some where.
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Old 05-12-2011, 11:14 AM   #6
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Alpine CDE-123

Pandora internet radio control, two USB inputs, 6 channel preamp outputs. Pandora radio is a really nice feature if you have an i-phone.
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Old 05-12-2011, 11:18 AM   #7
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Pioneer Premier for ease of use and quality second to none.
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Old 05-12-2011, 11:34 AM   #8
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Anything that's alpine is great and stay away from Sony
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:01 PM   #9
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Love my Alpine, and USB is a must! Also you can reformat the portable usb hard drives back to fat32 and use instead of a thumb drive to carry you're entire music collection
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Old 05-12-2011, 01:49 PM   #10
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I have a cde9856 Alpine. Bought it new in '05 for my Ram. I love it, no issues yet and the ipod control is awesome. Would be better if it had a 5 band EQ built in and 4 volt pre-amp outputs, but can't beat a $200 head unit that has been reliable for 6 years.
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Old 05-12-2011, 04:19 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by InvertChaos View Post
That's nearly the exact one that my brother has in his truck. I think his may be a slightly older model though. I know what you mean about taking 4 clicks to change the radio station. I guess if I got one like this I could fill up my iPod that I don't use anymore and use that, or do like you said and just fill up a USB flash drive with some tunes. How does it handle the file names? Does it read the song title from the song's tag or does it just read the [filename].mp3?
It reads off the song tag. It will display song title, artist name and album name.
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Old 05-12-2011, 09:46 PM   #12
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So far I'm liking the Kenwood KDC-MP745U. I looked at one of the higher end Alpine one but people were saying that the USB function was mediocre at best. Does anyone else have the Kenwood and want to share their experience?
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Old 05-13-2011, 08:43 AM   #13
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I've been using Pioneer radios for years in various vehicles. Never had a bad one and have always been very happy with their performance and features. My current stereo is a Pioneer DEH-4200U that I installed over Christmas along with Polk speakers all around.
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Old 05-23-2011, 09:59 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by InvertChaos View Post
Hey everyone. It looks like my stock head unit in my 04 TJ is starting is give up on me. It no longer plays any of my CDs and says on the screen "Err". I've even tried burning new ones. Anyways, I think ill take this as an excuse to upgrade. What kind of head units are you guys running? I want it to be fairly straight forward usage, be able to play songs via mass storage device, have a removeable faceplate, and be compatible with my stock speakers. Fire away!
Don't forget bluetooth. I am running Pioneer Premier in Jeep and Eclipse in F250, both are outstanding radios. Bluetooth directly to the phone is nice for hands free calls. Its the law here in CA and I hate those ear bud things hurt my ears over time.
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Old 05-24-2011, 06:48 AM   #15
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Don't forget bluetooth. I am running Pioneer Premier in Jeep and Eclipse in F250, both are outstanding radios. Bluetooth directly to the phone is nice for hands free calls. Its the law here in CA and I hate those ear bud things hurt my ears over time.
Meh it's not really a big deal for me. No call is important enough for me to talk on the phone while driving. If theyre relentless then I hold my phone out the window then say "This is what I'm hearing. How important is this?". Then again I don't have bosses calling me all the time like you adults do.
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Old 05-24-2011, 07:30 AM   #16
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I recently installed the Dual XDMA6415 in my TJ and I really enjoy it. Its $110 and that includes the Dash Kit and Wiring Harness, the only thing i needed to go out and buy was the antenna adapter ($9 at best buy). It has bluetooth which I like because I can stream Pandora from my Droid Incredible and when a call comes in or a text message it is easier to hear than when it is in my pocket. It comes with ipod hook up wires and it displays songs/artist/playlists on the display when you want to search your ipod or mp3 cd's. The only thing that you may not like is the usb / 3.5mm jack is on the faceplate and not in the rear so you see the wires when the ipod is hooked up. But I like being able to access it easily.


Dual XDMA6415 In-Dash CD, MP3 Receiver with Remote, Built-in

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