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I am in the market for a later model (2012+) Ridgeline. I definitely want leather and the sunroof so I am looking at the RTL and RTL w/Nav. I most likely will do a full sound system makeover with a double DIN Android Auto HU plus amp, components, and sub.

From what I have read, most are not big fans of the Navigation system offered in the Ridgeline.

I believe the 2013+ NON-Nav's all have the backup camera in the rearview mirror. If I get Non-Nav or the Nav version, will I lose any controls or functionality by replacing the HU? I understand the Nav version has a lot of built in voice commands, but I am not sure if there is anything special that Android Auto can't replace.

I assume if I get 2012 or earlier Non-Nav I would have to run wires for the backup camera.

Much appreciate any and all feedback.
 

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Welcome to the ROC!

I'm at the same stage as you in my hunt for a late-model Ridgeline, so can't offer an answer. But I'm interested to read any responses to your very good question about the navi option.

Correct about the 2013/14 back-up camera. In non-navi, it's displayed in the rearview mirrow. I have tested this and it worked better than expected.

Don't forget to include the SE model (2014 only) in your search, which will get you everything offered on the RTL/Navi plus some cosmetic goodies (but fewer color choices.)
 

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2104 Honda Ridgeline SE
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The Nav system in the G1 is 2005 technology and as such is outdated. You can add a rear view camera to the non nav Ridgeline, by changing the tailgate to one from the nav version and running wires from front to back. If you buy an RTL-Nav the stock camera can be hooked up to a new HU by making connections under the driver seat. I have put Kenwood HU's in my 2011 RTS and 2014 SE and had/have no complaints. The SE came with huge discounts that the stereo upgrade wasn't that much of a hardship and I like the black accents.

Use the search box on this site to find members projects. Here are some links....

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/17513-aftermarket-camera-can-done.html

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/44250-kenwood-dnx9990hd-install.html

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/133233-kenwood-excelon-dnx893s-hu-install-2.html
 
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Since you're going to upgrade the sound system you mine as well go with the non-gps if it's a big price difference. "Heli" is absolutely correct. I actually bought one of his Kenwood HU's (as well as a bunch of other stuff) in my RTL and it works great.
 

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My new to me 2013 RTL-Navi was delivered today, dove it all of about 10 miles. Love it, my 06 has been a fantastic truck. Having 160,000 fewer miles on it the 13 feels tighter even though my 06 is totally squeak and rattle free.

It does appear that the RTL does have a bit more wind noise, sun roof possibly. I will be installing factory rotor rack, this could increase this further. Road noise sounds the same, not a strong point on these trucks on open grain pavement.

Will admit I did not drive it home from work. We are having many mud slides near my house. Parked my 06 Ridge a 1/2 mile from my house last night and hiked home anticipating loosing both roads that access my house, only lost one. Thought this may be a harsh change for a clean dry climate Arizona car. Old ague my 06my be put to use a couple more days.
 

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2009 Ridgeline RTL (with nav) in Bali Blue Pearl
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Tod L. Cox,

If you don't go with the factory nav, you will lose Bluetooth and Honda's Handsfreelink. The thing people dislike the most about the Gen1 RTL and SE nav. system relates to the old Alpine navigation unit under the driver's seat. If you just replace that unit with something newer, you will have a much better nav. experience while keeping your Bluetooth and Handsfreelink (or so I believe) as well as keeping a factory look to your interior.

Also, the RTL (with nav. or not) comes with a Pioneer Premium sound system with either a Pioneer or Clarion head unit (no nav. vs. nav.) with more power, better Pioneer speakers, and a Pioneer subwoofer (behind the right rear-seat). Given I have this system, I can tell you it's pretty good but it can be better. From what I've learned, the best way to upgrade it is to replace the door speakers and dash-mounted tweeters for the Pioneer/Clarion head unit and Pioneer subwoofer are pretty good already. However, there's not much depth in the doors for the speakers; so you will be limited in the type of low-profile speakers you can mount there.
 

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The Nav system in the G1 is 2005 technology and as such is outdated. You can add a rear view camera to the non nav Ridgeline, by changing the tailgate to one from the nav version and running wires from front to back. If you buy an RTL-Nav the stock camera can be hooked up to a new HU by making connections under the driver seat. I have put Kenwood HU's in my 2011 RTS and 2014 SE and had/have no complaints. The SE came with huge discounts that the stereo upgrade wasn't that much of a hardship and I like the black accents.

Use the search box on this site to find members projects. Here are some links....

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/17513-aftermarket-camera-can-done.html

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/44250-kenwood-dnx9990hd-install.html

http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/9-1g-mobile-electronics/133233-kenwood-excelon-dnx893s-hu-install-2.html
Heli,

What did you do with your original HU that you pulled from your 2014 SE? Could that be installed in a non-Navi RTL?
 

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.....
Also, the RTL (with nav. or not) comes with a Pioneer Premium sound system with either a Pioneer or Clarion head unit (no nav. vs. nav.) with more power, better Pioneer speakers, and a Pioneer subwoofer (behind the right rear-seat). Given I have this system, I can tell you it's pretty good but it can be better. From what I've learned, the best way to upgrade it is to replace the door speakers and dash-mounted tweeters for the Pioneer/Clarion head unit and Pioneer subwoofer are pretty good already. However, there's not much depth in the doors for the speakers; so you will be limited in the type of low-profile speakers you can mount there.
MCChizzle,

Speaking of the sound system, can the "Aux Input" jack be used to feed music from something like an iPod? Or, what is that jack usually used for? Thanks.

(I'm a bit of an electronics knucklehead, in case you guys haven't figured that out yet. :smile: )
 

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Many people dislike the Ridgeline Gen 1 Nav system, but I have personally found it to be quite useful over the years. My Gen 1 is a 2012 so the maps were getting outdated, I bought the new disk a couple of years ago and it was easy to upgrade.

I have used Navi systems in Honda cars since 2002 as well as Garmin Nuvi in my Dodge truck, VW nav system in my GTI, and also the phone maps (Apple and Google). In my GTI the CarPlay feature lets you use the phone maps on the bigger screen so I have been able to do a pretty direct comparison of the different systems.

For ease of use, out of the systems I have tried I rate my Ridgeline Gen 1 as #1. It has a pretty big screen, simple high-contrast graphics and text that are easy to read, simplistic controls, and good voice command response. Voice command works pretty well even with a thick accent like mine. The system responds quickly to commands and the buttons and steering wheel integration are easy to use, don't have to take eyes off road and focus intently on the screen to zoom in or find a command button like the flat screen phone setups.

The Ridgeline Navi is not as detailed as the phone systems, as far as the number of points of interest, display options, and more up-to-date maps. It's maps are "big urban center centric", so for example you will have detailed coverage in and around major cities but in far-flung rural areas the towns may not have much more than the major intersections.

For me, the readability of the display and the easy hands-on controls make the Gen 1 system faster, safer, and easier to use than the others I mentioned. The other systems have some better features, but the small displays and tiny fonts make them very difficult for my tired old eyes to resolve and the lack of tactile buttons makes it extremely difficult to use them without taking eyes off the road and devoting significant attention to the location of "buttons". I end up using the Gen 1 system for 90+% of the nav work, with the phone as a supplement for the rural areas or if I am looking for something that the Navi system doesn't list. Once I find it, I put the closest address into the Navi and then use it to get there rather than futzing around with the small phone display.
 

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Speaking of the sound system, can the "Aux Input" jack be used to feed music from something like an iPod? Or, what is that jack usually used for? Thanks.
Yes that is exactly what it is for, I almost always have my iPhone plugged into the Aux Input so I can listen to my various playlists. It is also extremely handy to be able to use Siri to play whatever song you want by just holding down the "home" button and telling her what to play --- don't have to take eyes off the road at all. The sound quality isn't great, but it is good enough for me to enjoy a typical Festus eclectic commute hoedown (selections can range from bluegrass to classical to hard rock and anywhere in between). One caveat - the bass in the truck is pretty weak, if you like rap or other bass-heavy music you will probably be disappointed with the sound. It does pretty good with mid-range though so in my truck at least the sound of most instrumental music (Herb Alpert, bluegrass etc) is the "sweet spot".

One interesting quirk of the Ridgeline Navi based sound system that some users encounter, is that the EQ is set different when you listen to CDs than it is for the other sources. If you start up the truck and begin listening to XM or other non-CD sources, the sound can be muddy and underwhelming. Once you hop over to CD though, the EQ is changed and the sound livens up. It will then remain at that setting so when you switch back to XM etc it will sound better than it did when you first started. Some of us quickly got into the habit of hitting the CD button before going to the other sources, takes only a fraction of a second since you don't have to stay on CD long enough for an actual disc to start playing - as soon as you punch the button the EQ changes. (At least, that's how it SEEMS to work to me.... YMMV)
 

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2009 Ridgeline RTL (with nav) in Bali Blue Pearl
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MCChizzle,

Speaking of the sound system, can the "Aux Input" jack be used to feed music from something like an iPod? Or, what is that jack usually used for? Thanks.

(I'm a bit of an electronics knucklehead, in case you guys haven't figured that out yet. :smile: )
Uncle Festus is right. It's a 3.5mm TRS stereo input jack (i.e. a standard headphone jack) with a built-in amplifier. So if you have a device with a standard headphone jack it will work regardless of the device.
 

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2006 Ridgeline RTS in Steel Blue
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Heli,

What did you do with your original HU that you pulled from your 2014 SE? Could that be installed in a non-Navi RTL?
Not easily, several other items are needed, including the DVD drive under one of the front seats and some wiring which non-Navi vehicles simply won't have. I've followed a few thread on it early in ownership because I would have gladly done that back then.
 

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Not easily, several other items are needed, including the DVD drive under one of the front seats and some wiring which non-Navi vehicles simply won't have. I've followed a few thread on it early in ownership because I would have gladly done that back then.
Okay, thanks. So it sounds like anyone wanting to convert a non-navi to navi, would best go with an afermarket option like Alpine or Kenwood, and not try to retro-fit the OEM unit. Good to know.


P.S. We haven't heard back form the OP, but in another post he said he purchased a 2012 RTL. Not sure whether it was navi or not.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Okay, thanks. So it sounds like anyone wanting to convert a non-navi to navi, would best go with an afermarket option like Alpine or Kenwood, and not try to retro-fit the OEM unit. Good to know.


P.S. We haven't heard back form the OP, but in another post he said he purchased a 2012 RTL. Not sure whether it was navi or not.
I did buy a 2012 w/Nav. I'm having it shipped from Texas to Reno, should have it in a couple weeks (delayed because I am traveling the next two weeks).
I didn't really see any big difference in price between Nav and non-Nav.
I plan to use the Nav HU for a little while to see how much I like or dislike it. I have a Pioneer non-Nav HU with Android Auto picked out if I decide to switch.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

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Quote:

Originally Posted by ISO Truck View Post

Heli,

What did you do with your original HU that you pulled from your 2014 SE? Could that be installed in a non-Navi RTL?
__________________________________________

I still have the nav HU from my "14 SE. Should I sell the SE or have to offload it after an accident I will pull out the Kenwood and stick back in the stock HU. It would be a nightmare to install a Ridgeline Navi unit in a non-nav vehicle. Especially when newer HU's have all (and more) features self contained as opposed to the stock which has components under the seats, behind the dash and overhead for Bluetooth etc.
 

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Tod Cox: Congrats on your new G1 RL! Sounds like you found a good one. Did you really have to travel that far to locate one?


....

I still have the nav HU from my "14 SE. Should I sell the SE or have to offload it after an accident I will pull out the Kenwood and stick back in the stock HU. It would be a nightmare to install a Ridgeline Navi unit in a non-nav vehicle. Especially when newer HU's have all (and more) features self contained as opposed to the stock which has components under the seats, behind the dash and overhead for Bluetooth etc.
Many thanks for the explanation. I'm beginning to wrap my head around this now (and I'm a little ahead of myself, too, seeing as I haven't found a G1 RL yet!!)

One more question: In the OEM configuration, the navi screen folds down and reveals what looks like the CD loader (and something else, maybe?) What happens with an aftermarket set-up? Do they also have the fold-down screen with CD loader behind?
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Thanks ISO. In order to get the price and features I wanted, and not wanting to wait a long time, I had to look farther out.
I got the '12 RTL w/Nav, w/44k miles including freight to Reno for $24k. That's $3-4k cheaper than I could find local.
Ive bought a few cars long distance and have had good luck with it.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

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Oh, and I also did not want Black or White. This greatly limited my options. I have a black on black car now and was ready for a change.

Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
 

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One more question: In the OEM configuration, the navi screen folds down and reveals what looks like the CD loader (and something else, maybe?) What happens with an aftermarket set-up? Do they also have the fold-down screen with CD loader behind?
Yes my Kenwood Double Din HU's screen folds down to allow access to the CD/DVD player and SD card slot etc. Jump on you tube and look at reviews of HU's you may be interested in to see its features.


Click here...
https://youtu.be/MnGF9OWTpA4
 
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I'm shopping the Pioneer AVIC-8100NEX or the slightly downgraded AVIC-8200NEX and both of them the screen pops out and lowers, again exposing the SD card and CD/DVD drive.

I've seen the 8100 and used it in person, and the 8200, but I'm not finding a link with good pictures of that function, but at about the 2:30 mark this video shows it, Enjoy.

 
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