Building a new system for my truck

HokiesRock Newbie
Feb 25, 2019
First off, I've been out of the game for a while but I've been building car stereo systems since I was a teenager. But that was a long time ago!

So I bought one of those not-so-cheap Chinese brand android head units for my truck (2005 Ford F150 if it matters) a while back and it crapped out on me. I figured I'd build a new system using a reputable brand this time. Here's what I've bought (from Crutchfield) and now installed: Pioneer AVH-601EX head unit, Alpine KTP-445U amp, two pairs Rockford Fosgate P1683 3-way 6x8 speakers, Rockford Fosgate Punch P300-10 powered sub.

I took a while but I got it all hooked up and let me say the sound is fantastic and I love it.  It's as good as or better than I expected. The trouble is getting it to play nicely with my phone.(Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge). I got it to connect after installing Pioneer's AppRadio app and there the fun ends. It either let's you use the receiver functions or phone vis AppRadio, but not both it seems. For example, if I'm listening to the radio or CD any action on the phone automatically kicks it to Blutetooth audio. And I mean anything, e.g. if i open the phone, check text, or even just receive and email/text, it immediately switches to BT audio (even if I don't have any audio apps open on the phone)! This happens if I connect with USB or only BT.

Has anyone else experienced this? I was trying to build the system as cheap as possible (with kick ass sound that is) and this deck seemed to fit the bill. But reviewing the available options it's really confusing - it seems that every deck has these same options, so what's the difference between a $250 vs $600 deck these days?! (Yes, I know the more expensive ones have better quality processing, etc.). But for my needs I just want a reverse camera, to be able to make hands-free calls, and run Waze primarily; and not kick me to BT audio if I'm listening to the radio! Checking emails and texts would be nice too, but I can just do that on my phone. I though Android Auto would do this easily, but it seems to only work through the manufacturers' proprietary apps (i.e. AppRadio, WebLink, etc.). And any deck that claims to connect Android Auto wirelessly, there's invariably reviews saying it's junk and doesn't work. Luckily Crutchfield has awesome customer service and I can return my deck within 60 days, which I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to do. I don't mind spending a little bit more as long as everything works seamlessly.  But what's to say I don't have the same problem with a another model? I mean, the specs all seem the same and all of them have crap reviews for Android Auto. Has anyone else had this experience, or advice on what to look for to make sure I get what I want?

Sorry for the long winded first post.  I used to be pretty good at this back in the day but the landscape has changed dramatically. And it seems people are having the same problems, even with good brand name models. It used to be, if I ordered a Kenwood (or Pioneer, Alpine, Sone, etc.) deck I knew what I was getting and it was a good product. No so much these days it seems.


HokiesRock Newbie
Feb 25, 2019
BTW, if it makes any difference, I connected it to Bluetooth with the AppRadio app before connecting the parking brake safety wire if that makes any difference. I still haven't connected it to the parking brake - I just connect it to a hot or ground wire. It seems to work either way.



Old timer
10+ year member
Mar 24, 2004
springfield mo
I think that if you don't connect with app thing you would better off.  Just pair your phone to the radio.  That way it doesn't interfere with phone operations.


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