View Full Version : Need opinions/direction

08-19-2009, 07:58 AM
Hey everybody....

I need a little direction here...:confused: I currently have an Alpine 9835 for 4-5 years in my 1999 Nissan Maxima. The CD mechanism stopped ejecting/working several months ago. I was thinking about buying the Pioneer FH-P800BT with the bluetooth, HD radio etc etc. How will this sound with my current setup listed below? Can I do better with a different head unit? I was thinking of another Alpine, but, I've read on several forums that were critical of the new Alpine quality. Interesting enough, you guys here seem to be critical of Pioneer.

Current set-up:

Alpine 9835

Precision Power DCX 600.4

Rockford Fosgate Punch 400 .......(I wanted to replace this with the precision power, but installer suggested I incorporate this into system)

Infinity Kappa 12 VQ

Focal K2 in front and back

I know...I know, all old school stuff. Still sounds great though.


08-19-2009, 10:01 AM
For what it's worth, I've been an Alpine owner for over 20 years. Yes, some of their lines are not as good, but if you stick with their 9800 series you will not go wrong. As you can see in my sig, I have a 9887 and have had it now for over 2 years. Love it. This HU was the reason I finally bought an iPod. No more CD's. Honestly, from a sound perspective, I cannot tell the difference between the two.

08-19-2009, 10:55 PM

Thanks for responding. It is greatly appreciated. After reading numerous comments about the Alpine 9887, I am still on the fence. I cut and pasted below a comment off Amazon.com.....Interesting post. I think most people really like the unit, but hate the a la carte shopping that goes with the unit. I wonder if there is a hu that has everything built in such as HD, Bluetooth, Sirius/XM etc etc. I may be leaning towards Pioneer...Just don't know yet.

Thanks again

"I have owned a few Alpine units and each new one gets more complicated then the next. The CDA-9887 is by far the most annoying of them all. I mean the sound quality is ok but they nickel and dine you to death with all the extra things to have to buy in order to have basic functional EQ! Buy the time you finish getting all the things you need to run this system properly, you've spent $750.00 and that dosen't include amps speakers wiring installation fees"


08-20-2009, 12:02 AM
I switched over from an Alpine 9855 that I had in my Caprice since 2005 to a Pioneer 800PRS. I love my 9855 but it doesn't touch the 800 in terms of quailty. FYI, the 9855 and the 9835 have the same features. Yours has no glide touch, which is a plus, and it has the V-Drive hybrid amp, which is also a plus if you don't have any outboard amps. Other than that, they have identical features. With the 800BT, you're losing time alignment and 3 way capabilities. Other than that, it has pretty comparable features to the Alpine. One thing I do miss about the Alpine is the dedicated sub control with the push of the volume knob. The Pioneer sub control is in the menu. If you want more features, check out the 800PRS.

08-20-2009, 12:07 AM
May be worth it to fix it.

I think Alpine fixes them for like $120 flat fee.

You cannot beat a 9835 for $120, and you won't get much out of it
in that condition.

Or maybe it's time for a change anyway.

08-24-2009, 06:28 PM
eJschultz and mcsoul,

Thanks for responding.....

I have narrowed it down to these 4 Pioneers:


Besides the built in BT, 24 Bit Burr Brown and a few others, they seemed to be similar in all respects. Could someone please explain what exactly is a 24 Bit Burr Brown? I understand it improves sound, but how? I'm leaning towards the P800BT even though it does not have the Burr Brown. Am I missing out on something if I choose this deck?

http://www.pioneerelectronics.com/portal/site/PUSA/template.PRODUCT_COMPARISON/?vgnextoid=9bd539f6523e7110VgnVCM1000003367a8c0RCR D#section=overview

Thanks again

08-24-2009, 07:02 PM
The 24 bit DAC is a digital to analog converter. It will decode the digital information on CDs to analog sound. Most CD players use a regulated 1 bit DAC, like the 9835. This usually works fine, but the 24 bit does have more steps for decoding. This generally leads to better, more full, more lifelike sound. If you were happy with the CD sound the 9835 gave, the 24 bit processor may not me a necessary feature for you. If you're going to be playing mostly compressed music, you definitely won't need it. I do notice a difference in sound with my 800PRS over my 9855. This could be partly due to other features as well as the 24 bit DAC. All I really know is that it's clearer and much more life like with my 800PRS.

I could probably explain the difference between a regulated 1 bit DAC and a 24 bit DAC better if I could draw some things out for you, but obviously it's a little hard, especially since I'm using my iPod.

08-26-2009, 12:25 PM
Ok...so, I was driving yesterday and stopped at a light. I was looking down at my current 9835 looking at the "Disk Error" code that was flashing. Would not take CD's etc etc hence why I am looking for a new head unit thinking it was broken for the past couple of months. I took out a writing pen, pressed the reset button on the faceplate and the 9835 CD mechanism is working again. I've been away from car stereo for 4-5 years. Never dawned on me to try pressing the reset button to fix the malfunction. I am also amazed at how many members on this forum have VERY HIGH praise for this deck. Even several mods (somebody with 50,000 posts....:eek:) indicated that the 9835 can be considered one of the best decks ever made by Alpine. I immediately threw in some Metallica, Soundgarden, Linkin Park, U2, Kanye West and other artist I listen to. Forgot how amazing it sounds especially the Metallica. I guess I really did my homework several years ago before purchasing. Looks like I may be keeping for awhile. Kind of looked forward to BT receiving phone calls via head unit etc etc. Still may buy the Pioneer.

Anyone suggest optimum settings for 9835? I am definately not using this to its full potential. Perhaps take it to a local Alpine shop and let the expert tweak it to my liking.


08-26-2009, 02:24 PM
You're best off setting it to your likings. Sure some people on here have different settings they like to use, but every car is different and SQ is subjective. You may think certain settings sound awesome while others may think they simply ****. Play around with the settings and you'll find something you like.

08-26-2009, 08:13 PM
I to am in the same postition and had finally made up my mind on a 800 or 880prs and then i looked around to see how it played off an ipod and changed my mind against getting it. I have hundreds of artists and many genres on my ipod and to have to mindlessly scroll threw them to get to the artist i want = me having to look at other options. The 9887 is nice but the lack of customizing the sound after using the imprint and the lack of options without using imprint has me still pondering what to do.

I was really disappointed about the scrolling aspect and was hoping it would atleast have an alphabet types search like my 9800BT or w/e it is i have.