August 11, 2009im in the market for a new deck. im staying away from the video screen, and the ipod interface isnt that big of a deal because id rather control my music from my ipod instead of a deck. so my main priority is excellent radio signals (last one sucked), an aux output for my ipod, and i need rca outputs for my amps so my speakers and subs can work with it. I'm leaning towards pioneer, particularly the DEH-P6100BT. does anyone else have any suggestions?
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August 11, 2009I'll take a stab, though I've been out of the car audio world for about a year now.
I use the iPod interface on my headunit, but it's a touchscreen dual-din though. It works really well, and makes it much easier to search and find music on my 60gig iPod vice using my thumb to scroll through the iPod itself. Generally speaking I use the headunit's shuffle feature, because it's better selecting random songs. I also don't have to take my eyes off the road for long to find what I need. I can see where that might be tougher with the smaller buttons on a single-din deck.
That being said, Pioneer is an okay brand. I've never been particularly thrilled with the crossover settings and preset equalizers, because I actually know how to tune with a SPL/dB meter, and can't stand the way the preset curves sound. When I worked with Tweeter we always had to ensure that the ground was particularly good because they're very susceptable to whine and ground hum. The same could be said of Kenwood's single-din decks too.
I'm partial to Eclipse and Alpine for standard-din units, particularly because Eclipse is still known for sound-quality and quality construction. Not sure if they still do it, but Eclipse used to have very powerful (4V, 6V) line-outs, which made setting the gain and crossover on the amps LOADS easier over a deck with 2V outputs. When you have a better signal coming in you're going to have better results throughout the system. Alpine tends to be really loaded feature-wise for the money too, I don't know if they're still doing it, because it was only on the really high-end stuff there for awhile, but some of their decks feature an "imprint" setting that allows you to run a microphone in the cab with a disc specifically made to detect your vehicles reflections and resonances. That made a huge difference in the overall sound quality.
When it comes to dual-din units, Kenwood and Alpine all the way. Pioneer's new unit show a lot of promise, but I've heard they have reliability issues.
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