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mendon mafia

Need a refresher!

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Hi guys,

Been out of the game for a while but looking at getting a new deck as it is becoming somewhat expensive plus my time and labor to add a bluetooth adapter when I s womt be able to skip tracks from the deck.

 

So I figured if I'm gonna get a deck I want something decent. 

Last deck I bought was a flagship JVC about 10 years ago. It has 5v preputs and 24bit burr brown DAC but has very limited crossover functionality and eq. I also hate the user interface, very clunky navigation. I also hate how the bluetooth uses a module that goes in one if the 2 USB ports (LOL!)

I much prefer the interface (rocking knob) of the pioneer 590IB. Do pioneers still use the rocking knobs for navigation? 

I'm considering the 880PRS but don't know if I'll be able to tell the difference over the other decks I'm used to. I know it has way more adjustments but is it worth the $700 price tag? I would love to spend under $200 but am willing to spend more for a proven quality upgrade.

I would like single DIN, at least 4V preouts and a 24bit DAC. Bluetooth with hands free and good sounding mic. CD. USB. AUX. 7 band eq (preferably parametric). Am/FM. Hd radio. Front/rear/sub switchable to high/mid/sub. 

I am also interested in any units that may have bass restoration like the epicenter built in but I doubt any do. 

I'm currently running passive but I would like the ability to have a separate crossover network that allows for active crossover adjustment between tweeter and mid.

I've landed on the Pioneer DEH-X8800BHS. $180 from crutchfield which seems like a good buy as this was about what I paid for my JVC about 10 years ago.

Is there anything else I should consider or that is truly worth more money? 

Thanks!


refs: ebaker, its_bacon12, jando86, thedukey42 , WrenchGuy, jaredspl, teenapp, MisterGrubbs, BushJ311, fozzy2134

System: 1998 Chrysler intrepid 2.7l, JVC deck 24bit burrbrown, 5V preouts,

15" loaded FI BTL UFO style D2, Orion 5000.1d running at 4ohm

Polk mm6 front components powered by Rockford amp. Stock rears off hu power. Big 3 and 1 extra Wal-Mart battery in the trunk.

 

Side projects: Numbers matching 94 caprice ls (soon to be turbo) modest 2 10 setup on a few hundred watts. numbers matching 79 z28 with desmoged motor, possibly doing IB setup

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6 hours ago, mendon mafia said:

Hi guys,

Been out of the game for a while but looking at getting a new deck as it is becoming somewhat expensive plus my time and labor to add a bluetooth adapter when I s womt be able to skip tracks from the deck.

 

So I figured if I'm gonna get a deck I want something decent. 

Last deck I bought was a flagship JVC about 10 years ago. It has 5v preputs and 24bit burr brown DAC but has very limited crossover functionality and eq. I also hate the user interface, very clunky navigation. I also hate how the bluetooth uses a module that goes in one if the 2 USB ports (LOL!)

I much prefer the interface (rocking knob) of the pioneer 590IB. Do pioneers still use the rocking knobs for navigation? 

I'm considering the 880PRS but don't know if I'll be able to tell the difference over the other decks I'm used to. I know it has way more adjustments but is it worth the $700 price tag? I would love to spend under $200 but am willing to spend more for a proven quality upgrade.

I would like single DIN, at least 4V preouts and a 24bit DAC. Bluetooth with hands free and good sounding mic. CD. USB. AUX. 7 band eq (preferably parametric). Am/FM. Hd radio. Front/rear/sub switchable to high/mid/sub. 

I am also interested in any units that may have bass restoration like the epicenter built in but I doubt any do. 

I'm currently running passive but I would like the ability to have a separate crossover network that allows for active crossover adjustment between tweeter and mid.

I've landed on the Pioneer DEH-X8800BHS. $180 from crutchfield which seems like a good buy as this was about what I paid for my JVC about 10 years ago.

Is there anything else I should consider or that is truly worth more money? 

Thanks!

Provided you stay out of the gutter tier stuff you shouldn't have any issues with reliability or bad sound.   BT/Apple/Android integration has come a long way so that'll be a bit more streamlined in everything.   The way I'm reading it though, most of your concerns are very subjective, is Kenwood or Pioneer buttons or menu/track navigation "easier" or more user friendly?  Ask 20 people you'll get 20 answers.  If that's your concern go find some IRL at a shop and go out and poke around on them.

Whether or not ponying up the big bucks to get into some powerful DSP options built in is also really subjective.  All those units are very nice, and you're getting a good value in processing power as opposed to buying that stuff outboard, but they are big bucks and most folks manage to get by without.  I do believe JVC has a unit that can do active crossover if you just want that feature, and I'd say if your last one lasted a decade that's pretty solid and not a bad brand.  I think a forum search for active capable head units might come up with half a dozen mid-priced options.

I don't think anything has "bass restoration" built in but I'd suggest Zed Audio Ra over the Audiocontrol Epic/Epicenter.  It's a lot more versatile and subtle.  I found Epic went from off to overwhelming without any in between.

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4 hours ago, hispls said:

Provided you stay out of the gutter tier stuff you shouldn't have any issues with reliability or bad sound.   BT/Apple/Android integration has come a long way so that'll be a bit more streamlined in everything.   The way I'm reading it though, most of your concerns are very subjective, is Kenwood or Pioneer buttons or menu/track navigation "easier" or more user friendly?  Ask 20 people you'll get 20 answers.  If that's your concern go find some IRL at a shop and go out and poke around on them.

Whether or not ponying up the big bucks to get into some powerful DSP options built in is also really subjective.  All those units are very nice, and you're getting a good value in processing power as opposed to buying that stuff outboard, but they are big bucks and most folks manage to get by without.  I do believe JVC has a unit that can do active crossover if you just want that feature, and I'd say if your last one lasted a decade that's pretty solid and not a bad brand.  I think a forum search for active capable head units might come up with half a dozen mid-priced options.

I don't think anything has "bass restoration" built in but I'd suggest Zed Audio Ra over the Audiocontrol Epic/Epicenter.  It's a lot more versatile and subtle.  I found Epic went from off to overwhelming without any in between.

Thank you!  

I agree lots of these are subjective. I already went to Walmart to test some but they were all lower end than I liked and none were intuitive in my experience. 

Objectively: I'm looking for good crossover functionality with the ability to run active from the deck and adjustable slopes. Time delay would be nice. An eq with at least 7 bands. 4volt or higher preouts. 3 sets of RCA outs. Bluetooth with mic for calls. 24bit DAC. 

But from what it sounds like anything mid road and up should be good here. I'll have to go to a real shop or best buy to try some better decks.  

BTW my pioneer 590ib was my first deck and it still kicking some 12 years later and being in 4 vehicles!

Just out of curiosity, does anyone know about the Kenwood KDC-X702? also how does it differ from the 302 and 502 models besides port placements? These seem to have good crossovers and eqs also.

Lastly am I stupid for wanting CD? I hardly listen to them anyways. Is there something better I can get if I ditch the cd?


refs: ebaker, its_bacon12, jando86, thedukey42 , WrenchGuy, jaredspl, teenapp, MisterGrubbs, BushJ311, fozzy2134

System: 1998 Chrysler intrepid 2.7l, JVC deck 24bit burrbrown, 5V preouts,

15" loaded FI BTL UFO style D2, Orion 5000.1d running at 4ohm

Polk mm6 front components powered by Rockford amp. Stock rears off hu power. Big 3 and 1 extra Wal-Mart battery in the trunk.

 

Side projects: Numbers matching 94 caprice ls (soon to be turbo) modest 2 10 setup on a few hundred watts. numbers matching 79 z28 with desmoged motor, possibly doing IB setup

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7 hours ago, mendon mafia said:

Thank you!  

I agree lots of these are subjective. I already went to Walmart to test some but they were all lower end than I liked and none were intuitive in my experience. 

Objectively: I'm looking for good crossover functionality with the ability to run active from the deck and adjustable slopes. Time delay would be nice. An eq with at least 7 bands. 4volt or higher preouts. 3 sets of RCA outs. Bluetooth with mic for calls. 24bit DAC. 

But from what it sounds like anything mid road and up should be good here. I'll have to go to a real shop or best buy to try some better decks.  

BTW my pioneer 590ib was my first deck and it still kicking some 12 years later and being in 4 vehicles!

Just out of curiosity, does anyone know about the Kenwood KDC-X702? also how does it differ from the 302 and 502 models besides port placements? These seem to have good crossovers and eqs also.

Lastly am I stupid for wanting CD? I hardly listen to them anyways. Is there something better I can get if I ditch the cd?

I think wanting active capable narrows down your list a fair bit.  I'd try the search function and either bump one of the older list threads or start a new topic to get a current list.   I'd say anything in-store at a Walmart is either gutter brand or bottom tier from the good brand names, though I know you can order some nice ones off their website.  Best Buy will have a couple mid tier ones in the board, but typically they just have the cheap lineup in their board as well (though they can also order nice stuff). 

I think anything that can active crossover will have the other features you want.  Active capable generally puts you higher mid-tier by my estimation.

I don't use CDs any more myself but there's only a small handful of HUs that are USB only.  I had been running a Kenwood for a while that was USB only and loved it, recently replaced it with a Sony USB only that I really like.  The other Sony I got for my Corolla is mostly designed to integrate with smart phone but also has CD.   CD technology is so old now that the cost to add it is pretty much nothing so it's not like it's a feature that you're saving a few bucks by not getting.... these days it's pretty much like a tuner, it is unusual not to find it.

IMO Alpine, Kenwood (JVC is owned by Kenwood and many of their units appear to be just rebadged Kenwood), Pioneer are the big players in HUs and all of them should offer something with all the stuff you want.  I've had good luck with Jensen in the past but IDK if they make anything any more and I'm really digging the Sony products this year.   Straying from those brands may be hit or miss, the Boss, Dual, SoundStream, etc. and those bootleg no-name alibaba brands should be avoided at all costs. 

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With what you wrote and what I read.... Just get the Pioneer DEH-80PRS. It can be had brand new on eBay for $260 free shipping and buy it now.

Active - yes

Left and right eq's - yes - 16 bands per side

Time Alignment - yes

24bit Burr Brown D/A converter - yes

This head unit will put you in the mid tier with active capabilities.

If you are wanting better... and the ability to play higher quality audio files then I would save up your cash and buy an even higher end HU with the ability to play HD audio files including DSD files and use an external DSP for the EQ's and Time Alignment.


2008 Pontiac G6 GT Coupe - Full Active Build Coming Soon

1995 Jeep Grand Cherokee Limited - Rolling Cluster F**K - But Sounds Good

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