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Topic Review (Newest First)
05-16-2010 03:02 AM
SurfKaster
Quote:
Originally Posted by dharmabum View Post
My feeling is, its a jeep, if its over 50 degrees and not pouring rain my top and doors are off.
Guess I'm a puss next to you. The top might be off, but doors are for sure on if it's in the 60s. Anything below that & I'm covered up completely.
05-16-2010 02:34 AM
dharmabum I just picked up a Dual head unit at Walmart for $40. Its got a line in jack, a USB port and a SD card port, no CD player but an AM/FM receiver. Its got pretty decent sound and I can play my Iphone or Ipod through it or burn stuff to a flash drive to play. My feeling is, its a jeep, if its over 50 degrees and not pouring rain my top and doors are off, I will not invest alot of money in a unit that can get stolen or soaking wet pretty much anytime and the sound is fine for me... over the wind noise, the mud tires and the various other noises my jeep may be making at any given moment I am happy with any music to be playing.
05-16-2010 01:56 AM
BLACKTOOTHGRIN Nope.
Well that's true for Pioneer anyways.
I couldn't speak for the rest.

2009 was the last year of the rear USB ports.
It's a big mistake IMO.
Being able to hide the cables behind the dash is a nice way to do things.
That's why I had suggested the 710BT.
That unit has 2 USB inputs in the rear, plus a connection for an Ipod I believe.
No built in HD radio though.
05-16-2010 01:34 AM
doclouie I am finding out that I can't find a stereo that has a rear USB, MP3 capability, HD radio built in (Not HD ready) that has a rear headphone input jack.
05-15-2010 11:30 PM
Jma20a i'm just trying to say that sony doesn't have the quality as the other amps in its class and price range.
05-15-2010 10:58 PM
catITguy
Quote:
if you buy an amp that is one notch up form the sony you will be amazed at how crappy that sony amp is. yes the speakers are louder than what the factory stereo or after market headunit but there is no quality to the added power.
Then apparently my ears are broken. Im not interested in spending many thousands on a stereo system for my jeep that lives most of its life with the top off. I like to leave my home theater at home.
05-15-2010 09:53 PM
gryph iPod hook up
& Removable faceplate
05-15-2010 09:44 PM
mjfitzner I just threw an Alpine CDE-9874 head unitAlpine CDE-9874 In-dash car stereos reviews - CNET Reviews in my TJ. I had a stock head unit but wanted the ability to use my iphone since all my music is in mp3 format (I havent bought an actual cd in years lol). The Alpine I bought wasnt that expensive at all. I spend 80 on it from craigslist but it lists new at 130. I use the aux input every day now. I have had a few alpines in different vehicles now and havent really had a problem. Hope this helped.
05-15-2010 09:20 PM
Jma20a my best advice is to go to a car audio forum and ask some pros in this field. a lot of advice that has been given is bits of this and that all mixed together. i know of a good web site to go to but im not too sure how keen this forum is on posting other forum sites.
05-15-2010 09:15 PM
Jma20a ssa sells a nice 8 and 10" sub, very tight and accurate.

YouTube - 10" SSA DCON Subwoofer abusing a trunk lid
05-15-2010 08:58 PM
s3nt3nc3d
Quote:
Originally Posted by burton160w View Post
About the iVault, check some reviews on it and you'll find it is a piece of junk and is easily breakable. I only know because it was on my list of things to do, almost pulled the trigger and read some reviews.
Well damn...that sucks. I figure anything is breakable...but hoped it would be a decent deterrent. Kinda one of those...if they look in and see a blank cover where the radio is, hopefully they'd say screw it and move on instead of waste their time going after what could potentially be worthless. Imagine how pissed they'd be to pry that thing off and find a headunit with no faceplate...or a $15 Durabrand headunit. lol

Quote:
Originally Posted by burton160w View Post
I actually would skip an 8" sub. They can't handle enough lows to make it worth the price. Instead, look into some 10" subs. Big enough to handle decent lows for rock, jazz, rap etc. but not too big that you're shaking the neighborhood. Yes, I realize you can buy 10" subs that will do that, but some decent 10" will be more then capable for most Jeep enthusiast. You can mount them actually underneath the backseat (there are some guides available) or I have a 10" truck box that fits perfectly in the back behind the backseat.
I haven't used any 8's that have impressed me so I won't speak on that, but I tell you what... pick yourself up some e3.6 subs from Elemental Designs. They are a 6 1/2" sub and they sound really good. I had 2 of their precursor's precursors (EU-700's) in a small sealed box and they honestly sounded about as good as my two 10's (driven by the same eD NINe.2 amp.

Here's the page where you can buy them (or check Ebay...sometimes they list auctions on there that are cheaper than buying from their website) and it also lists the specs. I liked em a lot because I could run a super tiny box...which is much easier to keep hidden if necessary.

Elemental Designs

Quote:
Originally Posted by burton160w View Post
Dual and Jensen are cheap, but they're cheap for a reason. (Avoid Jensen)
I may be mistaken, but I was told that Dual products are made by Jensen as well.
05-15-2010 07:58 PM
Jma20a
Quote:
Originally Posted by catITguy View Post
I cant speak to their head units, but I have absolutely no complaints about the amp or 6x9s that are made by Sony. Maybe my ears arent as well tuned as some peoples, but I love the Sony stuff I have, especially for the price.
if you buy an amp that is one notch up form the sony you will be amazed at how crappy that sony amp is. yes the speakers are louder than what the factory stereo or after market headunit but there is no quality to the added power.
05-15-2010 06:00 PM
burton160w About the iVault, check some reviews on it and you'll find it is a piece of junk and is easily breakable. I only know because it was on my list of things to do, almost pulled the trigger and read some reviews. Really, stereos are useless to steal without the faceplate, and the Jeep holds the unit it well enough that it's not something I'd be terribly worried about unless you're in the heart of camden.

Quote:
I am trying to figure out where I can put a 8" sub just for a little more base
I actually would skip an 8" sub. They can't handle enough lows to make it worth the price. Instead, look into some 10" subs. Big enough to handle decent lows for rock, jazz, rap etc. but not too big that you're shaking the neighborhood. Yes, I realize you can buy 10" subs that will do that, but some decent 10" will be more then capable for most Jeep enthusiast. You can mount them actually underneath the backseat (there are some guides available) or I have a 10" truck box that fits perfectly in the back behind the backseat.

With your upgraded speakers, they're not going to mean anything without a decent amp pushing them. And as stated, in the end, playing with the units yourself will be the best for decision, but remember, you get what you pay for. Dual and Jensen are cheap, but they're cheap for a reason. (Avoid Jensen)
05-15-2010 03:46 PM
doclouie I am an engineer and I am all about quality. I would rather pay double and have it last forever than replace it every couple years. The comments have been invaluable.
05-15-2010 03:38 PM
catITguy
Quote:
SONY IS CRAP!!!! never waist your money on sony car audio!!
I cant speak to their head units, but I have absolutely no complaints about the amp or 6x9s that are made by Sony. Maybe my ears arent as well tuned as some peoples, but I love the Sony stuff I have, especially for the price.
05-15-2010 01:40 PM
s3nt3nc3d
Quote:
Originally Posted by barratt View Post
All the opinions in the world don't mean poop! You need to go to a store and play with a couple of units. Dont be afraid to fiddle with it and switch to different speakers. Just because one guy loves or hates his head unit doesn't mean you will too.

..Just my $.02
To an extent... as far as reliability, build quality, certain features go, opinions can save you from regretting your purchase. When you get down to whether this feature is better than that feature...this brand is better than that brand...this one looks cooler than that one, etc. That's where you need to go mess with one yourself and make up your own mind.

Also... I saw some folks mentioned Sony headunits are crap above. 5 years ago...that was quite true. I mean they looked and functioned well, but they were unreliable and would begin to fail very quickly. I had a Sony Xplod headunit in my old truck...I loved it...I could change the display colors to match the color scheme of my truck, it played mp3's and had great sound output...but then it started having weird errors reading CDs...it'd randomly shut off...the volume would crackle and pop until you smacked the headunit, the faceplate connections started to have issues making good connection so half the buttons wouldn't work, etc.

I put the unit in our Kubota tractor at work...it still plays well enough to use for basic radio purposes...and that's when I bought the Pioneer.

BUT... sorry, I started rambling...while I haven't used their headunits since then, I have friends who use them and they said shortly after that, their quality and reliability increased dramatically and they now produce some of the best headunits they've ever had. So I wouldn't nix a Sony until you test one out for yourself...and go read a few reviews on it.
05-15-2010 01:14 PM
barratt All the opinions in the world don't mean poop! You need to go to a store and play with a couple of units. Dont be afraid to fiddle with it and switch to different speakers. Just because one guy loves or hates his head unit doesn't mean you will too.

..Just my $.02
05-15-2010 11:37 AM
s3nt3nc3d I never remove my faceplates...too much of a hassle, but if you live in an area where auto theft isn't uncommon, you'll need to do something. This is what I intend to buy eventually.

Quadratec Exclusive 13104.51 - Quadratec® iVault® Stereo Mount for 97-06 Jeep® Wrangler TJ & Unlimited - Quadratec

If you go to Quadratec and search for "ivault" they also have package deals for under $200 that include some pretty nice headunits with the ivault and also come with the plug n play wire harnesses.

I'm running an older Pioneer DEH-P670MP...I've had it probably 5 years or so now and its still runs great. The only problem I've recently run into is it doesn't eject my CDs straight anymore...they get hung up on the flap, but my buddy who runs a computer shop and does a lil work on car headunits says all it needs is to have the drive realigned which takes all of about 5 minutes and it'll work fine again. The only thing I don't like about that particular headunit is no hookup for a flash drive...so I'm only able to run mp3 cd's and regular audio cd's (as well as the normal radio).
05-15-2010 10:24 AM
doclouie Thanks. Like always everyone has helped out immensely. I have removed the stock speakers and now have Pioneer 4X6 speakers up front with 5 1/4 Kenwood speakers in the sound bar. I am trying to figure out where I can put a 8" sub just for a little more base. Maybe under the back seat will work. I am going to start looking today. Thanks for the help. This forum is the best.
05-14-2010 09:31 PM
burton160w
Quote:
SONY IS CRAP!!!! never waist your money on sony car audio!!
Another person stuck on the 2004 audio stereotypes. Sony's audio with their latest series is legit, especially with how hard their package subs hit! The headunits still have to much flair for my taste, but sound quality they're ranking up with Kenwood, Alpine and Pioneer.

I personally run a Pioneer head-unit. The features that you definitely need to look for...
  • IPod/USB integration - It should be built in, no external box required. I personally HATE front USB ports since I couldn't stand having a dongle sticking out of the front, but my Pioneer has it run through a cable in the rear that sits inside the glovebox. The USB stick stays inside the glovebox, which remains locked, and I don't have to worry about unplugging it each time!
  • Preamp OutPuts - If you're concerned about sound quality, plan on getting an external amp. Doesn't mean you need subwoofers, but powering your soundbar speakers at 75watts RMS is amazing, and completely audible at 65 mph with the top down and the doors off. Look for a system that has a Front/Rear Output, a Subwoofer Output, and a AUX input!
  • AUX Input - Again, for me this has to be in the rear because I'm not having cords and cables sticking out of the front. It's a simple RCA hookup in the back that allows you to connect things like cell phones, my Blackberry, or other headphone jack players and then stash 'em in the glovebox. For me, I run Pandora on my Blackberry and then connect my blackberry via the aux.
  • MOTORIZED Removable Faceplate - Obviously you don't want stuff stolen out of your Jeep. No faceplate means a useless radio for wannabe thieves. It's no guarantee, but it does deter some theft. I say motorized because if it's not, expect the contacts to eventually become loose and for the faceplate to stop working after a while. Happened to my Kenwood and with my Pioneer I feel more secure.
  • A Good Screen - This is totally up to you, but make sure your happy with the screen. You're in a Jeep, so make sure it's bright and easy to see in the sunlight. Make sure its not TOO obnoxious for you. Ya like the layout, etc. etc.
  • Crutchfield.com - Accept no substitute. Order from Crutchfield, have the complete package, and have some piece of mind!

I love car audio, so feel free to ask me any questions you have. I run an external amp for my subwoofer and my soundbar, and it's audible even in the wind and no doors. My front speakers, since they're weaker, run off of the stereo.
05-14-2010 05:53 PM
Jma20a i run the older version of the pioneer deh-p710bt, has all the same features, just changed the look and updated their ipod recognition system for the newer ipods and iphones.

the 7 band eq is amazing to have makes a world of difference.

i just did a complete overhaul on my system. kept the headunit, got new kappa perfect components front and rear, 12" incriminator audio death penalty, mb quart dsc 1500.1d amp, 0/1 gauge wires, big 3 wire upgrade, 2 farad cap, kappa amp for the components, 2 cube ported box tuned at 35-hz.
05-14-2010 05:45 PM
kecksnext Personally I think it comes down to speakers and amps. Any single din head unit will be just about the same across the board whether it's a $80 Sony or a $400 Alpine. If all you want is music that you can hear with the top down and you aren't looking to expand into amp territory I would suggest this. Replace the speaker bar speakers with 6in 150 watt speakers and go with a head unit that has at least 40 watts RMS output. This will drastically improve your stock sound. If you want a little more "bang" for your buck you should look into amps and pre-amps.

I run a $90 Kenwood head unit with an aux input on the face for MP3/iPod etc. Coupled with that are 2 800 watt amps and a pre-amp for qality of sound adjustments. I lost the useless dash speakers all together because they are well...useless. 2 6in Pioneers in the sound bar and 2 300 watt 8inch mids in the cargo area. I love my setup but different strokes for different folks. I could easily add subs to this system as well if that was the desired outcome. Let me know if you want any other details or have any q's
05-14-2010 05:20 PM
BLACKTOOTHGRIN Try reading up on these:

Pioneer USA - CD Players

Dollar for dollar,
I think this is the best bang for your buck:
(retail price in stores will obviously be cheaper)

Pioneer USA - DEH-P710BT - Premier™ CD Receiver with Full Motion OEL Display, Built-In Bluetooth and USB Direct Control for iPod


- Rear USB ports to hide the ugly cables if you intend to use a HDD or Ipod

- 7 Band EQ

- Bluetooth built in

- Tons of features and complete control for EVERYTHING

It really has all the bells and whistles,
and they all serve a purpose, not just a gimmick.
I've been running a similar model for a year and a half now,
and haven't looked back.

Some people thumb their nose at the Bluetooth feature.
It will work great with your Hard Top on.
(Even with the window down at 60mph)
05-14-2010 04:36 PM
AfterMath Don't get a Sony...I had one once and it was a mistake. Luckily a guy broke into my Jeep and stole it and insurance covered it amongst other things. Went back to Pioneer and haven't looked back.

Best Buy has decent stereos and a bunch of speakers set up. You push buttons to select the unit you want to use along with what speakers. Its a good way to get a feel for the system you will be buying and to test out the ease of using the stereo.

Its all about what you like though, but I would stick with Kenwood or Pioneer.
05-14-2010 03:10 PM
drivebytruckerz I got a single disc Alpine for Christmas with a usb/headphone jack for auxiliary stuff (ipod, mp3 etc.). It never skips, and sounds really awesome. The only thing I HATE about it is that the time doesn't display when it's turned off. Just make sure you get a removable face to keep thieves walking on by.
05-14-2010 03:01 PM
toshpate I concur with the aux output and the card reader....have had units stolen and broken. one twerp just stole the faceplate and left the stereo so had to get new radio anyway. sorry but sound quality in a noisy jeep isn't just a real priority is it? I like having a remote tho so that I can pay more attention to the road instead of fiddling with knobs and buttons
05-14-2010 02:57 PM
PTaylor I've had Three in my 2001, Best one I've liked so far is the Sony. It sounded better than my previous Pioneer and Kenwood with the original Jeep speakers and wiring. As far as features, it really depends on what you are going to do.
I play CDs seldom, most of my music is in MP3 format so I transfer it to a USB stick and play via that. My Sony has RCA out for Amp, USB and AUX on the front, and an IPod cable in the back that is long enough to run anywhere and plug an IPod into and set down on a seat. I don't use the IPod cable, so I keep it stored in my glove box. I'm sure it is long enough to run from the dash under the carpet into the center console box though.

If you get one that has USB, make sure of the maximum size it can support. Some advertise USB but they will only go up to 512MB, 1G or maybe 2G. I use 4Gs and up, and on some of those stereos like in my sons car it has problems reading all the alblums. It's not the USB stick, it's the inferior radio. I always go online and D/L the manuals before purchasing one to make sure there are no surprises. If you can go into a store and play with one, that's good also. Keep in mind, it won't sound like that in the Jeep though. Obviously it depends on how much you are willing to spend, but more expensive is not always better. I've tried to keep my price around $200 for a stereo, the Sony is $99 at Walmart about a year ago, and it's been the best so far. Better speakers would make a world of difference, I haven't went there yet.
05-14-2010 02:41 PM
abw0004 I personally have an Alpine headunit and it has everything that I would ever want like:
-Ipod capable/Ipod jacks
-USB jacks
-Bluetooth
-Multi color options on the LED screen
-CD player
-removable faceplate
-Requres two keys to remove the headunit to deter stealing
-HD radio, puts out crystal clear sound
-RCA jacks for subs, also works for center-console sub (I have both that and aftermarket subs)
-Equalizers
-easy to use controlls, also has a remote that comes with it

I absolutely love it, and a am a musician so I have to hear good and clear sound. i hope this helps!
05-14-2010 02:31 PM
AfterMath I've ran a Pioneer system in all of my vehicles to date. Right now I'm running one with mp3/ipod control (among other things I don't use).

I also have customized the speakers in my jeep: 4x6 pioneers in front, 5.5" pioneers in the soundbar, and two 6x9 Polks sit in the back (with extra wire to pull them out for camping trips/working outside).

And before you ask, I am running my 4x6 and 5.5 through the same channel. Some speakers out there max out a channel, but the 4x6 and 5.5 together don't max out the channel so I'm safe.

If you're going to invest in aftermarket stereo, might as well go with the speakers as well!!
05-14-2010 02:26 PM
andreafahy01
Quote:
Originally Posted by Six Gun Matt View Post
I bought this one from amazon, it's a marine sony (so I don't have to worry about a little water getting on it with the top off):
the marine part, I like. smart thinking!
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