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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

I have a 2006 RTL (no navigation).

I'm no longer much of an audiophile. As a matter of fact, I set my factory subwoofer to 0 and it didn't really bother me much, so I'm fine without a subwoofer.

I am frustrated that I cant use my ipod and ipad. I did buy the usa spec connector years ago and have not been impressed as it always loses my place. Besides, it won't help with the ipad.

I'd like to buy a good quality head unit. I've been told that one with a usb port will allow me to use my ipod/ipad, although it might not charge them.

I won't bother with the subwoofer, but I'll probably replace the other speakers.

Any suggestion for a really good quality head unit? Is it true that if it has a usb adaptor, it will allow me to use my ipod and ipad?

Thanks in advance for head unit or speaker recommendations.

Dan
 

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I would get a 6 channel single din if audio is the only thing in mind.

If you choose one with bluetooth, you can listen to music wirelessly, 2 USB ports plus an aux port for extra devices, you can also add an HD RADIO that sounds close to cd quality.

You will have access to all your playlists, artists albums on the HU and read the names of the songs. If you want steering wheel controls get a metra axxess, easy to install

Look at JVC, PIONEER or kenwood, you may get a good one for under $200 and may have the HD included and blue tooth also for hands free phone calls.

If you get it through Crutchfield, they include the mounting kit, anntena adapter and harness, the harness connects to the connector on the HU and the factory plug, to use the existing speaker factory wiring.

Don't use the factory ground from the connector, use new ground the one on the left side of the glove box, connect the blue wire of the antenna adapter to pin 2 red/yellow wire for noise free radio reception.

I hope this helps.
 

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I know deepdrop does not need 6 channels or looking into getting an amplifier.

It's just that the 6 ch HU will give an option to later add a sub and those units tend to have the extra bells and whistles to adjust the audio portion, EQ and xovers that help to clean the sound a bit and give clean 18-20 watts RMS compared to the 13 watt rms power from the factory HU .

The units without a cd player are good choices also, with bigger displays and extra option to control the pandora or similar app on the phone from the HU
 

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you may want to consider also the newer breed of "Digital" HU.

The big difference is that they forgo the CD player for extra USB ports, better IThing integration, and a better internal amplifier.

Just keep in mind you will lose the ability to play CD's.
What is this CD technology you speak of???? Isn't that gone the way of the 8-Track and cassette player??? :act024::act027::act024:

I've got 6 burned CD's sitting in my RTL OEM player and literally dont even remember what they are, as I use my iPhone/iPod, so ya the USB is a great idea :act035:
 

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Hi,

I have a 2006 RTL (no navigation).

I'm no longer much of an audiophile. As a matter of fact, I set my factory subwoofer to 0 and it didn't really bother me much, so I'm fine without a subwoofer.

I am frustrated that I cant use my ipod and ipad.
Hey DD, I'm confused, your avatar says he own a 2007 RTL?

Does it not come with a jack to plug your iPhone into??? My 2007 RTL has it, and I have my sub set at +2, and at least it's better than no Sub.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Wow! Things have changed since I used to play with car stereos in the 80's in college.

Thanks to all of you for the very helpful responses, although they leave me a little unsure where to go.

My Ridge is a 2007. I checked the title. It is an RTL but there is no aux jack to plug into. I think that only came with the nav option. I'm sure I checked it out before installing the USA SPEC.

My budget is in the $500-$600 range, but I was thinking that would include some improved speakers to compensate for not having a subwoofer.

Integration sounds like what I'm looking for. I like the idea of seeing things on a big display instead of driving off the road as I fiddle with my ipod/ipad. Sounds safer. I used to get frustrated when the usa spec device would pick up somewhere randomly when I expected it to pick up where I had left off. I've started writing down the spot where I left off. Much of the time this is in an audio book that I've downloaded to my ipod for my kids. Long story, divorce, wknds with kids, long drives...

Still like music though. I never thought about it but I guess I could live without a CD player. I use it now, but that's only when I haven't put the particular CD onto my ipod yet.

Clean watts is important. I may lose my subwoofer but if I install better speakers all around, I want to drive them with clean power.

Laser is correct that I would like to keep the option of a subwoofer for the future. I probably will never use one. I'm sure that better speakers and no sub would sound better than what I have with OEM and a sub. But, if I sell the Ridge someday, the buyer may want the option. But not a priority of mine so if there's a compromise involved I could do without.

Hopefully I've clarified my needs after reading your advice. I can live without picking up where I left off. I would love to navigate my idevice from the head unit. I will want to keep the steering wheel controls. Clean power. Better speakers. No sub (unless there's an easy way to put one in. I don't want to get into major projects-too much on my plate). Don't have to have CD player if losing it brings something good like a big display, HU controls, etc. Pretty much everything I play comes off of an ipod or ipad.

Thanks again for the helpful info. If you have any further suggestions after the above, please feel free. I am very grateful to all of you.

Thank you,
Dan
 

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Woe! $600.00 can do a lot. If you do not mind a single DIN hu this one is only $200.00 and gives you BT ( not sure it displays titles, most likely not) but the USB ports with the apple cable will, same for some CD's also, this has a CD player, 5 volt RCA's.http://www.crutchfield.com/p_105KDAH75B/JVC-Arsenal-KD-AHD75BT.html?tp=5684

If you want double DIN, then you can play DVD's but you may have to spend over $80.00 more and sacrifice, blue tooth or other audio features.

All you need a cheap small amp, a set of RCA cables and you could drive the factory sub with it. You will never know, you could build your box with the help of this thread, just need to read the latest pages since the box needs to be taller for a Pioneer sub. If you build the box for under $50.00 you have $250.00 (more than enough for a pioneer sub and an amp. http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=13308

The first step if you have not done this yet is here http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39073 once you do this you decide if you need new speakers or not, then you may just go with the sub/box amp, or just cheap bridgeable amp to use the existing sub.

If you just go with the amp to drive the factory sub, use this one
and follow instructions given here.
http://www.ridgelineownersclub.com/forums/showpost.php?p=680721&postcount=3

Good luck and let us know what you decide to do when the time is right. Sorry yeah I know, a lot of stuff to read and many options to choose based of the budget you mentioned. :act035:
 

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I know you are going a different direction but I just thought I'd throw this out there.

The USAspec i-pod adapter I have allows me to control the i-pod from the radio and steering wheel controls and does not lose it's place. The i-pod is stuffed into the cubbie under the radio and I've only seen or touched it twice since installing the adapter. And i listen to it daily. It charges the i-pod too. I admit to not knowing if it will play an i-pad, never tried and probably won't.

Anyway, not trying to convince you of anything, just sayin what mine does...
 

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The issue about all of those oem HU iPod integration devices like isimple and uspec is, once you get a new software upgrade on phone or iPod, there is an 80 plus percent chance it will not work correctly or have some minor or annoying bugs.
Unless you never plug your phone or iPod to a computer you may never experience issues, or someone is a computer geek and enjoys spending hours correcting firmware issues and calling the manufacturer or send it for updates.

If one of these were under $50 I would buy it, at $120 plus, no thanks.

I had the music link 2.00from Honda I bought for $50, never had an issue and probably it will never have onem It worked,it just had some inconveniences and it is not a full integration although it always started from where it was turned off.

The HU has twice the power and the sq is twice as better.
 

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I know you are going a different direction but I just thought I'd throw this out there.

The USAspec i-pod adapter I have allows me to control the i-pod from the radio and steering wheel controls and does not lose it's place. The i-pod is stuffed into the cubbie under the radio and I've only seen or touched it twice since installing the adapter. And i listen to it daily. It charges the i-pod too. I admit to not knowing if it will play an i-pad, never tried and probably won't.
I would probably go this route too to keep it stock looking if your thinking of selling afterwards, and just try changing out your tweeters instead of all your speakers and start using your OEM Sub.

You might be surprised how much better your system sounds with just the tweeter replacement, and how cheap it is to do so.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
@DaveG, Thanks for the feedback. I know that many people had similar issues with their usa-spec adaptors not holding the place. It also seems to depend on how long you leave it in between uses. Anyway, I'm glad yours works well for you. I do really deserve a gift for myself and that's why I'm going to look for a really nice new HU, possible speakers too. It's been a rough few years...

@Rickman, I appreciate the advice. I suspect that by the time I sell my Ridge, the stereo will not be a significant factor. Maybe I'll put it back to factory setup if that's possible and desirable.

@laser, I have a lot of reading to do, and will probably have some questions once I read the links you gave me. The tweeter replacement should be easy and it's a good idea-thanks. Who knows, maybe I'll even go with a subwoofer, but integration of the ipod/ipad is key and will be the biggest improvement. I'm really psyched for this. I will definitely follow up with pictures, etc. on the project, as I did for the bed cover I built. One quick question:
I thought double din was larger than single din. Why would double din mean giving up bluetooth or other audio features? I would think a larger HU would have more features....Anyway, I'm going to get reading. Maybe the answer lies in those threads.
Dan
 

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@ One quick question:
I thought double din was larger than single din. Why would double din mean giving up bluetooth or other audio features? I would think a larger HU would have more features....Anyway, I'm going to get reading. Maybe the answer lies in those threads.
Dan
The thing is with a Double Din HU that will have BT, HD plus 6 ch and a good brand like kenwood, JVC or Pioneer, it is going to cost you in the range of $500 plus dollars, add Navi and more audio features it can be $800.00. If you settle for just a basic one without BT, HD, Navi, it will cost you around $300-400.

If you dont mind spending the 350- $500 on a nice DVD Double din unit then go for it. JVC makes a nice one with BT, no HD Navi with nice basic good audio features that has a detachable face for maybe $300-375 depending on where you buy it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Thanks Laser.
I finished the subwoofer thread. I may do it eventually. I could definitely build a box but this would not be the first thing I would do. First is hu, spkrs, and building a new bed cover out of aluminum starplate.

I started to read the tweeter thread, and DEFINITELY plan to replace the tweeters, as well as the other speakers, (unless they are considered particularly good OEM speakers, which would surprise me). Any speaker recommendations would be really appreciated.

The JVC head unit you describe sounds great. I usually buy at Crutchfield just because they have really have good customer support.

If anyone wants to recommend some head units that would work well with ipads via usb please feel free to either PM me or post it if that's allowed. I really like the idea of a nice display on a hu that controls the ipod/ipad. It needs enough clean power to drive replacement spkrs. I realize that if I ever add a sub, I'll need a new amp for it.

I'm assuming there's no cutting involved for the hu?

Thanks for the help. I'm still reading and learning, mostly about double din vs single din.

Have a nice weekend everyone
 

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Thanks Laser.
I finished the subwoofer thread. I may do it eventually. I could definitely build a box but this would not be the first thing I would do. First is hu, spkrs, and building a new bed cover out of aluminum starplate.

I started to read the tweeter thread, and DEFINITELY plan to replace the tweeters, as well as the other speakers, (unless they are considered particularly good OEM speakers, which would surprise me). Any speaker recommendations would be really appreciated.

The JVC head unit you describe sounds great. I usually buy at Crutchfield just because they have really have good customer support.

If anyone wants to recommend some head units that would work well with ipads via usb please feel free to either PM me or post it if that's allowed. I really like the idea of a nice display on a hu that controls the ipod/ipad. It needs enough clean power to drive replacement spkrs. I realize that if I ever add a sub, I'll need a new amp for it.

I'm assuming there's no cutting involved for the hu?

Thanks for the help. I'm still reading and learning, mostly about double din vs single din.

Have a nice weekend everyone
Hi deepdrop! Crutchfield provides everything, no cutting, a mounting kit, plastic to mount the HU, antenna adapte, harness, just need to solder or connect with spade or bullet connectors, the speaker wires,and plug the harness to the factory connector and new HU.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
That's reassuring. Thanks Laser.

I'll call them and see if I can pick out a hu and some tweeters.

If anyone has specific models they recommend, please feel free to IM me or post them if we're allowed to do that on this forum.

Dan
 

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That's reassuring. Thanks Laser.

I'll call them and see if I can pick out a hu and some tweeters.

If anyone has specific models they recommend, please feel free to IM me or post them if we're allowed to do that on this forum.

Dan
for the tweeters you may be better off with amazon, infinities are popular

or if you want to take chance with some new model and cheaper price
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Laser,
I'm going to get tweeters (the first link wasn't to a pair of tweeters, but the second link was to the JBL tweeters).

I'll also get a good high end double din HU.

I've read pretty much everything I can find and I think this is the way to go for now. Maybe I'll add more at some point, but this will make a huge difference. Thanks to you all for the help. Laser, I really appreciate your help especially.

I'm ready to go ahead and buy, so if anyone has any HU's they think are really good please let me know. Otherwise, I think I can trust the people at Crutchfeld. I can buy the tweeter on Amazon. I don't have any concerns about managing that install, but will appreciate the Crutchfeld support for the HU.

I'll post along the way in case it is helpful to anyone, and of course I'll give my final impressions once it's up and running.

Dan
 

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For speakers, I absolutely LOVE Infinity. If the Kappa line will fit your budget then go for a componant set up front. They will come with the mid/bass speaker for the front doors and the tweeter for the dash with a good crossover for between the two. Then a full range set for the rear doors. And, I think the best bang-for-the-buck in subs is the powered Bazooka tubes that fit behind the rear seat back. But, again, those speakers are pricey. However, I believe, speakers are the single most important factor in makng a system sound good. They can make a cheap HU sound great and a Great HU sound fantastic. Conversly, cheap speakers (and the factory ones are cheap) can make even the best HU sound bad.
Sounds like you are putting a lot of effort into your research. I would make one mor suggestion before you pull the trigger on a buy. Go to some local shops and try to get hands and ears on the units/speakers that you've narowed your choices down to. The best specs and reccomendations in the world does not mean you will like the look/functionality/sound as all those things can be very personal.
Good Luck with the new system.
 
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