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Brent Wall

Stereo Head Unit Selection (Non Malibu Install)

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Brent Wall

I'm helping a friend install a new stereo head unit in his boat (a 23' center console). Can anyone offer advice on a good choice for this application? I've looked at the Sony, Kenwood and Clarion models. All of them look pretty good but I'm interested in anyone's experience with these or others.

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shawndoggy

How is he going to use it? CDs? iPod? Bluetooth? Sat radio?

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barefootpaul

I was just contemplating this exact topic since I need a new head unit for my bu.

We would probably want CD, Bluetooth, and an aux input. Looking forward to everyone's suggestions.

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Brent Wall

Flash drive, iPod and Sat Radio are the primary requirements.

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liljohn

Have you thought of going with an EQ and running a dedicated Ipod/mp3 player? That seems to be the trend right now. I have been on that wagon for two seasons and am glad I went there. Every one has a music device and the EQ can be setup to play any of them.

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shawndoggy

If I was starting fresh, and CD wasn't a concern, I think I'd give this one a long hard look:

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_40310_Sony-DSX-S310BTX.html

I've used the sonys in the past and really like the quality of the bluetooth interface. It's not marine, though, and if the deck is in direct sunlight it could be hard to read. 4v preamp outputs, dual usb, and built in bluetooth. pretty sweet.

I have the clarion M309 right now, along with the BLT 370 bluetooth adapter (which can be added to any deck or eq with an aux in). The clarion has some nice features, like usb on the back of the deck, and dual aux inputs. I don't like the ipod interface, though, because clarion doesn't give you the ability to control from the ipod, only from the deck, and navigation is pretty clunky from the deck. That said, I just leave a 16gb thumb drive plugged in instead, and it's great for that. Also the clarion only has 2v preamp outputs. I've added an eq and it sounds worlds better.

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UofK fanatic

Have you thought of going with an EQ and running a dedicated Ipod/mp3 player? That seems to be the trend right now. I have been on that wagon for two seasons and am glad I went there. Every one has a music device and the EQ can be setup to play any of them.

Can this be done with the WS 420? I am going to start building amp rack next week and would like to completely remove head unit

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old skool malibu

Can this be done with the WS 420? I am going to start building amp rack next week and would like to completely remove head unit

It has a 3.5 mm jack so I am sure you could skip the deck and just tie it into your amps

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liljohn

Can this be done with the WS 420? I am going to start building amp rack next week and would like to completely remove head unit

It sure can. there are few different ways to connect to depending on the source device.

Ipod- http://www.amazon.com/Direct-Audio-Input-iPod-Connector/dp/B000IZ8UCM

MP3 - http://www.amazon.com/Belkin-Audio-Cable-Splitter-1-Mini/dp/B00004Z5CP/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1332356739&sr=1-1

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shawndoggy

It has a 3.5 mm jack so I am sure you could skip the deck and just tie it into your amps

the 3.5mm input on the ws420 is undergained imho. If I were going to run headless I'd use the rcas on the back.

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Deephaven

Figure out what options you need and buy the cheapest Pioneer, Eclipse or Alpine that fits those needs.

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shawndoggy

Figure out what options you need and buy the cheapest Pioneer, Eclipse or Alpine that fits those needs.

Didn't eclipse pull out of the US market 2 years ago?

the eclipse cd5030 would be an awesome HU.... bluetooth, usb, ipod, cd, 5v, 7 band EQ...

Edited by shawndoggy

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jk13

Didn't eclipse pull out of the US market 2 years ago?

They have two double din nav screens only.

I agree go with Pioneer or Alpine. The new Pioneers have rear USB, so no chords hanging out of the front of the radio. (Rant on) I can't believe that is now the trend--you can't run the chord to a glove box or center console, you need it hanging out the front of the radio 24/7? (Rant off).

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shawndoggy

downside of either pioneer or eclipse is no marine remotes. OK wait, pioneer has that really ugly one that looks like it came out in 1986. If a wired remote is important, they are bad choices. Otherwise love me some pioneer... last 3 car hu's have been pioneer.

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CincyVLX

Anyone have any opinion on the Kenwood Marine units? I've been strongly considering the KMR-440U with two KCA-RC107MR remotes (transom and driver).

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Deephaven

Didn't eclipse pull out of the US market 2 years ago?

the eclipse cd5030 would be an awesome HU.... bluetooth, usb, ipod, cd, 5v, 7 band EQ...

I'd rather have a 5 year old Eclipse than a new Sony. Of course, I'm still running an 8454.

downside of either pioneer or eclipse is no marine remotes. OK wait, pioneer has that really ugly one that looks like it came out in 1986. If a wired remote is important, they are bad choices. Otherwise love me some pioneer... last 3 car hu's have been pioneer.

Do you really need a "marine" remote? Most people that I know that boat use a volume knob and an Ipod. My boat has a remote that I've never used :)

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h2ojunkie

Have had many Kenwood head units in boat and autos. Currently have Kenwood marine head unit, fantastic, lots of adjustments to fine tune your music if you dont have a WS420. The marine remotes are laid out well and function nicely.

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CincyVLX

Have had many Kenwood head units in boat and autos. Currently have Kenwood marine head unit, fantastic, lots of adjustments to fine tune your music if you dont have a WS420. The marine remotes are laid out well and function nicely.

Which unit do you have? I'm looking at either the 440 or the 700. I'm still kind of torn.

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h2ojunkie

I have the KTS MP400MR it's about 3yrs old, has an Ipod interface ect... the newer models have the USB and Ipod ect... I live out near Perfect North Slopes if ya ever want to check out the system and have a beer ect....

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