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Old 01-27-2013, 02:13 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default New head-unit for an audio newbie.. Opinions?

So I'm finally getting with the ages and I want a new head-unit. I love that the stock one flows with the car, but it's functionality is lacking, a lot. Aftermarket ones seem to look out of place to me, but the features overcome that..

I am looking at the "Alpine iDA-X305S", here is the link.. Alpine iDA-X305S Digital media receiver at Crutchfield.com

I know next to nothing about audio, but this one seems nice, and it's on sale.

I ask, audio gurus, thoughts/opinions?
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Old 01-27-2013, 05:01 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I have had this one and the Ida-x303. I love them both, alpine makes some of the best headunits. Make sure you have an iPod or iPhone though because it doesn't have a CD player.
I have 20,000 songs on my iPod and you can use the headunit to find music on the iPod, with ease. It also has important EQ features like HPF, bass center, etc.
Overall for $170 its a damn good headunit, probably one of the best out there if you don't need a CD player.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:07 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Kenwood Excelon KDC-X696 CD receiver at Crutchfield.com
This is what I recomend, just don't like Alpine.
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Old 01-27-2013, 07:11 PM   #4 (permalink)
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definitely get a headunit with a cd player usb and aux hookup, and if your looking to get subs then make sure it has the outputs for it as well
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Old 01-27-2013, 08:40 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default New head-unit for an audio newbie.. Opinions?

I won't be getting subs, just want something for my iPhone. I don't need a CD player either, really. I have everything on my phone, as does everyone I know.

Thanks guys!!
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Built motor & Ported head
Forward Motion E1 turbo
LCR ported & polished manifold (Werks elbow mod)
Tial 38mm wastegate
FIC 1100cc injectors
Werks modified Aeromotive 340 Stealth fuel pump
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:34 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Eclipse.
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:45 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Quote: Originally Posted by skatewhellin View Post
definitely get a headunit with a cd player usb and aux hookup, and if your looking to get subs then make sure it has the outputs for it as well

a cd player? really? in 2013? while i still have them in all my cars i can't even remember the last time i used a cd in the car.

OP, that alpine will be just fine for you. if you still want to hunt around stick to a major name brand and you will be fine (alpine, pioneer, jvc, kenwood, eclipse). in the past few years i have had various models from each brand and for the most part all have served their purpose, from the basic to the flagship models.

you can also pick up a cheap usb stick and leave it "hidden" in the car somewhere for your source with most modern headunits now. i picked up a 32g usb stick last year for under $40 shipped.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:42 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Default New head-unit for an audio newbie.. Opinions?

Awesome! I let my buddy pick it out and he said Alpine has a very good reputation for quality.

I couldn't find any other better model than this one. Especially given the massive price it's on sale for.

Thanks!
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2005 PVK w/ GWA

Built motor & Ported head
Forward Motion E1 turbo
LCR ported & polished manifold (Werks elbow mod)
Tial 38mm wastegate
FIC 1100cc injectors
Werks modified Aeromotive 340 Stealth fuel pump
Powered by: E-85

Tuned by Dave, aka Duster360
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:49 AM   #9 (permalink)
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the only other thing i would caution you too look for would be bluetooth. that particular model does not have it built in, so if you want it the cost will be more. this jvc has bt for calls and can also stream music via bt as well, it has 2 usb ports and it's cheaper than the alpine.

JVC KD-X50BT Digital media receiver at Crutchfield.com

for $10 more you lose a usb port but gain a cd player

JVC KD-R740BT CD receiver at Crutchfield.com

both come with free install gear as well.
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Old 01-28-2013, 12:25 PM   #10 (permalink)
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anything from a recognizable brand with the feature(s) you want will be fine. I recommend that before you buy anything you go to the manufacturer's web sites and download the instruction manual and make sure that it can do exactly what you need. Else you get some crap like Sony head units which claim "USB mass storage support" but don't tell you that it's limited to a certain number of folders on a USB drive.
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:17 PM   #11 (permalink)
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There's the Ida-x305sbt which has Bluetooth, but it will be more than the Ida-x305s obviously.
If you are solely looking for iPhone connectivity the alpine ida series headunits are the best for navigating through songs, playlists, etc. Also this one works very well with pandora on the iPhone.
-I would decide soon though because once they sell out of that model there will be no more.
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Old 01-29-2013, 11:44 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Default New head-unit for an audio newbie.. Opinions?

They quit making that series I'm guessing?
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Built motor & Ported head
Forward Motion E1 turbo
LCR ported & polished manifold (Werks elbow mod)
Tial 38mm wastegate
FIC 1100cc injectors
Werks modified Aeromotive 340 Stealth fuel pump
Powered by: E-85

Tuned by Dave, aka Duster360
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:01 PM   #13 (permalink)
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while being one of the first media-only units the ida line was never a huge seller. they had a bad rep as being severely lacking on the sound quality side of things and you had to buy all the options that other units came with (bt, better eq, better sound processing, etc). they come out with new variations of them each year and have been including more features on the more expensive models but they are kind of falling to the side now.
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Old 01-29-2013, 05:07 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Default New head-unit for an audio newbie.. Opinions?

Is there anything else that would be better quality at around the same price or a bit more?
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2005 PVK w/ GWA

Built motor & Ported head
Forward Motion E1 turbo
LCR ported & polished manifold (Werks elbow mod)
Tial 38mm wastegate
FIC 1100cc injectors
Werks modified Aeromotive 340 Stealth fuel pump
Powered by: E-85

Tuned by Dave, aka Duster360
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Old 01-29-2013, 07:03 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Quote: Originally Posted by nineball View Post
while being one of the first media-only units the ida line was never a huge seller. they had a bad rep as being severely lacking on the sound quality side of things and you had to buy all the options that other units came with (bt, better eq, better sound processing, etc). they come out with new variations of them each year and have been including more features on the more expensive models but they are kind of falling to the side now.

what "sound quality?" aftermarket decks use the same integrated amp ICs that OE units do. not much to be gained there. And the miserable trash that aftermarket car audio recievers pass off as "EQ" can't hold a candle to what the OEMs have. "sound processing" like MX, BBE, or DSO is a bullshit; most of what they do is slightly boost harmonics to give the listener the perception that the fundamental exists. And given how aftermarket speakers are pretty much universally pieces of junk, it's only the harmonics that you'll ever hear.
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