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Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 26 Feb 2011, 07:34 pm
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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Smile Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

I have an '05 PT with a stock am/fm /6 cd changer. I want to add an option to play a smartphone or mp3 player through the existing radio, using the radio controls. I also want to get the best sound quality. I'm looking for recommendations on what to buy. I'm planning to have it installed by a local shop, perhaps Best Buy.

Would any of the existing audio components no longer work as a result of installing a mp3 audio option?

Any thoughts or recommendations would be appreciated.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 12:33 am
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Posts: 48
Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

I don't know what price range your looking at. I just bought a radio for my 06 I went cheap because if it gets stolen I'm not going to go into depresstion about it lol. But I bought a pioneer DXT-2266UB and I love it it has USB aux and it plays mp3 CDs it has a remote control which controls my iPhone through USB and it gives my stock speakers a bigger punch I recomend it I paid 150 for it installed with the antena harness and the plastic with a comparment to delete the big gap. Good luck
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 12:39 am
dom92's Avatar
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Location: Tampa Bay Area
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Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

I have this one: Sony CDXGT540UI MP3/WMA/AAC Player CD Receiver (Black): Electronics

I like it, it was relatively inexpensive and it sounds great even with the stock speakers. You just have to set the audio settings properly. It has bass, treble and midrange adjustment, FM/AM, CD with MP3 CD option (Love that, I can go on a 3 hour car trip and not have to change the CD one ), USB input and Aux input. The USB option will allow you to control your device through the stereo's controls. You can also search CDs and USB devices for specific songs with the search feature. I love this radio, it was the first upgrade I put in my Cruiser.

Just a word of advice, watch the price on that stereo if you want to buy it. It's $95 now but a week ago it was $70 and I bought it three months ago at $75. The price changes often, but you can get it cheap if you have patience
2004 Base PT Cruiser, 5-speed, 138k miles.
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Old 27 Feb 2011, 01:25 am
Kawizx9r's Avatar
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Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Salinas, CA
Posts: 1,575
Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

How much are you willing to spend?

I can help you achieve the best sound quality you've ever heard in a vehicle if you're willing to put forth the time, effort and cash.

Loud pounding bass is not to be confused for a 'sound-quality' system. That's SPL.

I can talk your head off but won't do just yet until you let us know how good of a system you want.
Originally Posted by Chromenut View Post
Kawi is a friggin genius!
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 11:27 am
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Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

I don't mind spending a couple hundred bucks (or a bit more) but I'm hoping to keep the stock radio and add an option for a smartphone or mp3 player. A new radio would definitely clash with the dashboard. I'll consider a new radio once I exhaust other options. I'm looking to keep CD quality sound so a new radio might be the best options. Thanks.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 05:21 pm
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Thumbs up Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

Head Unit: First off, forget the 6 cd changer. If you are going to get a new head unit, make sure that it;
*Plays MP3/Ipod - 1 120g Ipod is like a 1,000 cd changer
*Has 6 Pre outs (3 sets) So you can add a subwoofer and a 4 channel amp, even if not right now, you could 1-2 years from now
*Has at least a 7 band Equalizer, so you can tune. Deep bass, Mid bass, high bass, Low Mids, Hi Mids, Low Highs, High Highs.
think of it like a pizza Pie. each slice representing an area of control. 80% or more of head units have only a 2 or 3 band EQ. So it's like cutting that entire pizza pie into just 2 or 3 huge slices. Avoid 2 and 3 band EQ's. The Minimum I would go is 5 bands, but I would find a 7 or 8 band EQ. The Equalizer is really important if you want control over your music.
*** Plays Sat radio
** Pre Amp Voltage of 4. (less than 4 equals poorer sound quality, 80% of head units have only 2 volts. Trust me 4 Volts sound much better, like twice as clear)
**************************and you can get a head unit that does all of these things for about the same price as a garbage head unit. Be a smart, informed, educated shopper.

I recommend this one
Pioneer MVH-P8200 Digital media receiver - Features & Specs at
You can find it for under 150 online, and it doest everything mentioned above. Crutchfeild and best buy will sell them like 2x the price of people on amazon or ebay. I suggest finding a cheap ebay seller, who is has 1,000 of feedbacks, 99% positive, and is on top of his messages. Message him; if he writes back quickly, you know he is on top of it if you ever need to exchange or return something.
The MVH p8200 :
4 volts per Pre out
6 Pre outs
8 band EQ
Ipod/Sat ready
Plays Ipod videos in full color
Around 150 bucks

**Door Speakers. It depends on if you would ever add a 4 channel amp. your head unit will only push 15-20 RMS per channel. A decent 4 channel amp will push 60-75 RMS. That is 3x-4x the power.

** If you want to plan for the future, get speakers that can handle 75RMS or more. I listened to alot of speakers this month.
The Alpine Type R and S sound really good. I would get these if you don't plan to buy a subwoofer, because they handle bass very well, but handle mids and highs slightly above average.

**If you plan to get a subwoofer, get the Infiniti Kappa's. they have below average bass, but the best mid-high range sound quality. These speakers are designed to balance a strong sub woofer out.

I also like 2 distinct features they have. You can rotate the tweeter, and aim it towards the driver seat. they also have a "treble boost" button, right on the speaker. You can pick which treble level works best for your set up. Personally, I put the treble booster on the back speakers, because I have big subwoofers.


For around 120 dollars, you can get a great subwoofer. The best two I have heard, that also put out 1,000 RMS each, (not max, RMS)
Pioneer TS-W3002D2 Champion Series Pro 12" sub with dual 2-ohm voice coils at Crutchfield Signature[rank500]Car+Subwoofers
That sub will sound better than 2 entry level subs, and take up much less room than 2 subs. It can handle the same power of 4 Rockford Fosgate P2; a popular speaker that people that are not car audio savvy get, because they are available at best buy; lol.

Most subs come in 2 ohm and 4 ohm versions. If you don't plan on competition, get the 2 ohms. 4 ohms are usually bought to wire them creativly, down to 1 ohm.

*** Amps

If a Amp can produce 1000 RMS at 2 ohms, it is usually only 500 RMS at 4 ohms. So if you get a single 4 ohm speaker, you are really wasting money on power of an Amp that you can never use.

Personally, I like 2 ohm subwoofers, and get a amp that matches their RMS at 2 Ohms.

A good amp that would push 1 of those 12" Pioneer 1,000 RMS would be
Alpine MRP-M1000 Mono subwoofer amplifier 1,000 watts RMS x 1 at 2 ohms - Features & Specs at

If you shop around, I found that amp in the 200 price range.

check out Macho Man's response to the question at 58 seconds

Last edited by SergeantPtCruiser; 27 Feb 2011 at 05:30 pm.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 07:43 pm
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Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

Excellent feedback from all. Thanks very much. I will check out the units recommended by everyone. I agree prices on Amazon and ebay beat the big sellers. Thanks everyone!
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 08:16 pm
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 415
Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

What do you plan to upgrade?

Head Unit
Door Speakers

And how much do you want to spend. I can help you get the highest quality products, that are cheap.

---a lil more info needed to give you specific advise...

(make sure your head unit is 4 volts, 6 pre outs, at least a 7 band EQ that plays Ipod/SAT radio.

The head unit is the most important upgrade.
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 27 Feb 2011, 08:21 pm
Join Date: Feb 2011
Posts: 415
Default Re: Looking for Audio Upgrade Recommendations

It will cost you at least 100 bucks for the ipod controller for your stock, plus it wont' sound good.

For 140, you can get a really good head unit, that plays your Ipod, and does a ton of other things....

Forget the 6 cd player, it's obsolete like a tape deck is
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