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Falko

Ipod head units, and general stereo information

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Falko

I didn't want to start in on someone else's thread with my questions, so I started a new thread.

Background,

Just bought a new to me '04 XTI. Boat was barely used, 'bout 100 hours. It still has the factory stereo, or so it seems.

Anyway, my limited use with the boat so far shows that at anything beyond idle, the stereo is as useful as a water noodle is for skiing. And given the age, the stereo is antiquated, no external hookups etc.

I want to re-do the system, but not going to go nuts. I have no need for tower speakers and the wife hates subs (didn't know that before I put the ring on her finger, although I'd be tempted for something smaller to increase the overall sound but nothing harsh). So, here is my thoughts, feel free to comment, shoot down, ignore and shake head while walking away.

I'm looking at a couple head units that have an internal ipod dock like the poly planar and the fusion. To those I'd add a wired remote for the bow of the boat (that's the wives' perch) and an amp for 6 speakers throughout the boat (and possibly do something for that lil sub). I'd like to put in decent quality speakers to handle the amp.

So some questions, thoughts on the ipod housing head units?

What size/type of amp would be applicable?

Thoughts on a stealth sub? ( I can build a box/housing for it, I have tools n stuff)

Recommendations on speakers?

I'd like to budget about a grand for this, possible?

And thanks for any responses, good, bad, ugly. I'm definitely not new to boats but new to proper boat stereos. Thank you.

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Nitrousbird

For a grand:

Amp: ($297 on Amazon but can be had cheaper)

Polk D5000.5 ($297 on Amazon but can be had cheaper)

http://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-5-Channel-Amplifier-PAD5000-5/dp/B005ZKFZEQ

That will easily run all of your in-boats and your sub.

Sub: ($130 shipped)

Polk MM1040DVC

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_14754_Polk-Audio-MM1040DVC.html

In-Boats: $60 x 3 shipped = $180

Polk DB651

http://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-6-5-Inch-Coaxial-Speakers/dp/B000P0PF9G/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1360715746&sr=8-1&keywords=db651

Head Unit: ($289 Shipped)

Alpine CDA-9886M

http://www.amazon.com/Alpine-CDA9886M-CDA-9886M-Receiver-Controls/dp/B0028TEQKG

Remote: ($152)

Alpine MC20

http://www.ebay.com/itm/ALPINE-MC20-MARINE-BOAT-WIRELESS-REMOTE-COMMANDER-SYSTEM-CONTROL-WATER-PROOF-/330866444782?pt=US_Marine_Audio&hash=item4d092d49ee

For the remote, you can also do the MC10; exact same unit but only does single zone volume which is all the above Alpine head unit does anyway. Not a lot on the market right now but I bought mine about a year ago for $89 shipped.

Regardless, all the above is $1048 (or $896 without the remote). You can also buy a floating wireless remote for $40 (though I got mine for $20 last year): http://www.ebay.com/itm/ALPINE-RUE-M1EX-MARINE-BOAT-AUDIO-REMOTE-CONTROL-FOR-RUE-M1RF-SYSTEM-WATER-PROOF-/360578596210?pt=US_Marine_Audio&hash=item53f428bd72

You'll be hard pressed to beat the quality of the above and meet your 1k budget.

Edited by Nitrousbird

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shawndoggy

Good work nitrous. I'd probably go with different cabin speakers, but that's a nicely spec'd "basic" (awesome to most people) rockin' system.

For a modest all in one sub: $200

http://www.crutchfield.com/S-fdESBey3Qx7/p_108BASSLIN/Infinity-BassLink.html

Speakers: Kicker KM6250.2 (135 x 3) 405

http://compare.ebay.com/like/310582074140?var=lv&ltyp=AllFixedPriceItemTypes&var=sbar

PPI 900.4 amp: $189

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_38338_Precision-Power-PPI-P900.4.html

Sony headunit Sony DSX-MS60: $159

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_34170_Sony-DSX-MS60.html

Sony wired remote Sony RM-X60M/L: 99

http://www.crutchfield.com/p_158RMX60ML/Sony-RM-X60M-L.html?tp=13308

$1052, so $4 more than the nitrous build. Significantly better cabin speakers, at the expense of a not as nice headunit. The basslink is also "done" so you don't have to build a sub box, and that's probably worth $4. Basslink sounds like a good fit with your wife. It will add richness to the sound without making your boat into a bass-barge.

Edited by shawndoggy

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Falko

Wow, thanks a lot. Wasn't looking for a complete system build, but it is greatly appreciated.

Quick question, the amps recommended are 4X channel, do you drive the other two speakers from the head unit?

I think these are great options. Trying to decide whether to go with a internal mounted ipod connection like the Sony or the versatility of remote connection. thinking I could do an i-pod mount at the helm and have better overall control with the remote. I was also looking at a different head unit yesterday that had full Pandora control for an iphone which would come in quite handy. Is there anything specific I should be looking at for features on a head unit?

Again, thanks for the help.

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Nitrousbird

I currently have the Bass Link in our boat (came with the boat...looks like the original owner ordered it with the boat in 2001). It works well for what it is but I'm still replacing it.

I've been pretty happy with the db651's I've heard...good bang for the buck.

However, another route without having to downgrade to a Sony head unit (yuck) but upgrading the speakers:

PPI 900.4 ($189 - link in Shawn's post above)

Polk MM651um ($135 x 3 = $405)

http://www.amazon.com/Polk-Audio-AA2652--MM651UM-6-5-Inch/dp/B001E5PN2A/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1360759828&sr=1-1&keywords=mm651um

Basslink: ($160)

http://www.amazon.com/Infinity-Basslink-200-Watt-10-Inch-Subwoofer/dp/B000063TJY/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&ie=UTF8&qid=1360759777&sr=1-1&keywords=basslink

Alpine head I posted ($289)

Alpine Floating Remote: ($40)

Total: $1083. The in-boats are obviously the budget busters. So here is another alternative:

- Go higher end on the in-boats and do 4 of them. Exile SX65-M ($180 x 2 = $360)

http://exileaudio.com/store/index.php/amplifiers/speakers/sx65-m.html

- PPI 600.2 ($140)

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_38336_Precision-Power-PPI-P600.2.html

Those + Alpine head unit + floating remote + Basslink = $989. You do lose front/rear fading in this setup.

In my opinon, go with my original setup or the upgraded speaker setup I listed (either the MM Polks or the Kickers Shawn suggested) with the Basslink.

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Nitrousbird

Wow, thanks a lot. Wasn't looking for a complete system build, but it is greatly appreciated.

Quick question, the amps recommended are 4X channel, do you drive the other two speakers from the head unit?

I think these are great options. Trying to decide whether to go with a internal mounted ipod connection like the Sony or the versatility of remote connection. thinking I could do an i-pod mount at the helm and have better overall control with the remote. I was also looking at a different head unit yesterday that had full Pandora control for an iphone which would come in quite handy. Is there anything specific I should be looking at for features on a head unit?

Again, thanks for the help.

You would just run the 3rd set of speakers in parallel with another set on the amp. So 2 channels of the amp will run @ 4ohm while the other two at 2ohm.

Don't buy a crappy head unit. Remember, all audio is processed through that. I don't care how great your amps and speakers are, if the source sucks there is nothing that other high-end stuff can do to save it.

If you do want to save money on the head unit, try this (also has Pandora controls, though I can run Pandora through my Alpine deck as well but I have to change tracks via the iPhone):

Clarion M502 ($150)

http://www.amazon.com/Clarion-Mobile-Electronics-M502-Receiver/dp/B006ZZUF68

Clarion MW1 Remote ($119)

http://www.amazon.com/Clarion-MW1-Watertight-Stainless-Display/dp/B001Q3M0QC/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1360762162&sr=8-1&keywords=clarion+mw1

Basslink ($160)

PPI 900.4 ($189)

Polk MM651um ($135 x 3 = $405)

$1023. And if you have a little time to shop around I guarantee you can get the above for under $1000 shipped to your door.

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Falko

Front and rear fade is important.

I was actually looking at the Clarion M502 that you listed. I've put clarion in my last two boats and they seemed to do quite well. Granted we ran the speakers from the head unit, no amp. Those boats were I/O's and a bit quieter and didn't need much. With the kids getting older and spending more time on the boat while it is actually running, sound quality and volume is more on my mind especially with the inboard.

Again, I appreciate the help with this, I haven't done much with stereos and learning the dos and don'ts.

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DAC

Stereo newbie here as well. I have been planning to upgrade my cabins with the polk speakers and one of the PPI amps mentioned above, and adding the basslink sub sounds like a good option.

Couple of questions:

1. If I am just using the amp on the four cabins, is the 2 channel (PPI 600.2) enough amp? Just looking to improve the sound quality, not provide tunes for the whole lake.

2. I plan on adding an equalizer just so I have a volume knob at my fingers tips instead of under the armrest (probably the clarion eq). Any issue with adding that to the above setup?

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shawndoggy

Front and rear fade is important.

I was actually looking at the Clarion M502 that you listed. I've put clarion in my last two boats and they seemed to do quite well. Granted we ran the speakers from the head unit, no amp. Those boats were I/O's and a bit quieter and didn't need much. With the kids getting older and spending more time on the boat while it is actually running, sound quality and volume is more on my mind especially with the inboard.

Again, I appreciate the help with this, I haven't done much with stereos and learning the dos and don'ts.

The M309 does have front rear and sub pre-outs unlike the M502, but you lose the built in bluetooth. The ipod control on the M309 works well and even when it's set to be controlled from the ipod/iphone itself, you can skip tracks forward and back from the deck (and I assume from the remote, but I don't have one).

Despite nitrous's aversion to sony headunits, I will say having used both in the past three years, that the sonys sound better than the clarions stock-for-stock. Combined with an external EQ like the Clarion EQS746 I've been happy with my M309, but before adding the EQ the signal was weaksauce. In comparison I ran a sony MEX BT3800 (car deck) in our old boat and it did well driving the amps (though I did end up running an eq on that system too, eventually).

The M309 provides a lot of flexibility as an input source because it has CD, front and rear AUX inputs, rear USB, and an input for a clarion proprietary sat tuner. But I'd really want to drive the signal through an EQ before the amps to get the most out of it. Given that experience, I'd assume that the same would be true with the M502.

The alpine deck nitrous originally recommended is very nice and probably the best marine deck you can get as far as the signal to the amps goes.

I currently run the mm651ums that Nitrous linked to. The only reason I didn't recommend those is that despite the spec sheet, all three pair are marked 3ohm on the speakers, so if you need to run two pair on a channel in your setup you might run into impedance issues unless you run in series. Sound wise they are loud and seem to take as much power as you are willing to feed them (I'm currently giving them 75w per channel). They are brighter than I'd want in a car but highs tend to dissipate

Stereo newbie here as well. I have been planning to upgrade my cabins with the polk speakers and one of the PPI amps mentioned above, and adding the basslink sub sounds like a good option.

Couple of questions:

1. If I am just using the amp on the four cabins, is the 2 channel (PPI 600.2) enough amp? Just looking to improve the sound quality, not provide tunes for the whole lake.

2. I plan on adding an equalizer just so I have a volume knob at my fingers tips instead of under the armrest (probably the clarion eq). Any issue with adding that to the above setup?

1. That will work fine, you just won't have the ability to fade, which may or may not be important depending on where the speakers are.

2. I really like that clarion EQ, especially for the price. Very good bang for the buck.

easily in the open air and they sound great on the water.

Edited by shawndoggy

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Falko

I've found some pretty good deals on kicker KM6200's. Are those decent when compared to 6250's?

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shawndoggy

I've found some pretty good deals on kicker KM6200's. Are those decent when compared to 6250's?

they are the coaxial, not the components.

Edited by shawndoggy

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Bobby Light

I would forgo a head unit all together and go the EQ or zoned line driver route. Much cleaner sound and controls at your fingertips.

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Falko

how do I listen to the radio?

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Nitrousbird

I would forgo a head unit all together and go the EQ or zoned line driver route. Much cleaner sound and controls at your fingertips.

Reasons not to do this:

- No radio (I don't listen to welfare radio but some folks still do)

- No remote control

- iPod, Sirius, etc. all have to be directly controlled, meaning they have to be out in plain site. With a good head unit, they can be controlled via the head unit or remotes and the units can be hidden wherever you want

- No CD option if you want that

I know I'd be unhappy having a no head unit setup.

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Dave K

I have a Sirius Sat radio head with a 1/8" plug and a Itouch for music. I am using a Wet Sounds WS-420. The Itouch plugs into the back RCA inputs, and the Sat radio plugs into the aux in. We very seldom listened to a CD. In fact can't even remember playing a CD. I weighted the cost of a deck head and IMO getting the wet sounds 420 was a no brainer. The flexibility of features I like and on top of that I have a GOOD pa system and mic.

how do I listen to the radio?

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Dave K

Reasons not to do this:

- No radio (I don't listen to welfare radio but some folks still do)

- No remote control

- iPod, Sirius, etc. all have to be directly controlled, meaning they have to be out in plain site. With a good head unit, they can be controlled via the head unit or remotes and the units can be hidden wherever you want

- No CD option if you want that

I know I'd be unhappy having a no head unit setup.

I'm the exact opposite. I didn't want to jerk around and try to look at the deck head which IMO is inconveinently place in the arm rest. I will have my sat radio and ipod located so I can actually see them when I want to.

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Nitrousbird

I'm the exact opposite. I didn't want to jerk around and try to look at the deck head which IMO is inconveinently place in the arm rest. I will have my sat radio and ipod located so I can actually see them when I want to.

I have an Alpine Transom remote mounted just below the dash.

But when I'm out swimming or ready to board, it sure is nice to be able to change the volume, track, source, etc. through either my transom remote or floating remote. Can't do that with an EQ and is a feature used every single time we have the boat out.

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Dave K

I'm the exact opposite. I didn't want to jerk around and try to look at the deck head which IMO is inconveinently place in the arm rest. I will have my sat radio and ipod located so I can actually see them when I want to.

I am retro fitting something like this

post-5453-0-51940700-1360888086_thumb.jp

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nuttyskier2002

I have an Alpine transom remote (slightly used MC10) that I am not using if anyone would like to make an offer. It works fine and is in great shape. I traded out my CDA 9886M for a Pioneer DEH 80PRS. Don't need the remote anymore.

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shawndoggy
I'm the exact opposite. I didn't want to jerk around and try to look at the deck head which IMO is inconveinently place in the arm rest. I will have my sat radio and ipod located so I can actually see them when I want to.

I am retro fitting something like this

I've used something like this on our boat. When it is hot, i have found that my iphone will overheat if left exposed to the direct sunlight. Which is a bummer, because a stubby windshield mount otherwise puts the phone right where I want it.

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Bobby Light

Reasons not to do this:

- No radio (I don't listen to welfare radio but some folks still do)

- No remote control

- iPod, Sirius, etc. all have to be directly controlled, meaning they have to be out in plain site. With a good head unit, they can be controlled via the head unit or remotes and the units can be hidden wherever you want

- No CD option if you want that

I know I'd be unhappy having a no head unit setup.

Well kinda, you've got the ipod there which essentially can act as your remote, and you've got pandora and stations like that unless you're out in the boonies with no cell reception.

CD's - LOL

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Bobby Light

how do I listen to the radio?

On your smartphone via the radio app or stations like Pandora. I do it all the time.

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Nitrousbird

Well kinda, you've got the ipod there which essentially can act as your remote, and you've got pandora and stations like that unless you're out in the boonies with no cell reception.

Mobile devices are generally not waterproof. I can't swim off the back of my boat and expect to change the channel with my phone; and even if I could I can't adjust my volume, bass level, etc. with that mobile device anyway.

Though where I normally boat has great cell coverage, our lakehouse vacation on Norris Lake has zero cell coverage on the water = 100% Sirius use. Again, controlled from the head unit and remotes.

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Falko

I'm definitely going with a head unit for control purposes, and I like the radio (yes, I am old and obsolete).

But what I may do, is get new speakers, amp, possibly the basslink, and a good controller for it all that I can plug an ipod into and continue to use the current head unit. Once I find a head unit that I like and has the right options, I'll jump on that and do a transom and helm remote.

Thanks guys, this has been really informative.

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Bobby Light

Mobile devices are generally not waterproof. I can't swim off the back of my boat and expect to change the channel with my phone; and even if I could I can't adjust my volume, bass level, etc. with that mobile device anyway.

Though where I normally boat has great cell coverage, our lakehouse vacation on Norris Lake has zero cell coverage on the water = 100% Sirius use. Again, controlled from the head unit and remotes.

Well you could change the volume, but yeah if it's a transom remote you need the mobile device isn't the right choice.

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