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So the OEM stereo sucks big time.Anyone here install an aftermarket head unit while retaining steering controls for the hands free & stereo controls?I can't seem to find the adapters anywhere.The only adapter I found was for the antenna.Also was anybody able to retain use of the OEM auxiliary jack & ipod connector?
 

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if you go aftermarket, you will loose the aux imput jack and ipod connector. im in the same boat. i want to get an am head unit, but that means im out steering wheel controls, input jack, ipod controls, and sirius. its BS i tell you! :bs:
 

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A decent aftermarket head unit will include all the features that you lose from the stock unit like Bluetooth, aux in, iPod in, USB charging, Sirius/XM. I was under the impression the steering wheel controller posted above would work. Not worth it for me because I control phone and music via my iPhone and I hardly ever listen to radio so the only thing the steering wheel would do is adjust volume. I don't miss steering wheel controls at all for what it's worth.
 

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Here is what I'm doing:

Getting one of these.

That takes the output of your stock stereo, cleans it up and turns it into a 'flat' signal which then you can send to an amplifier

So I'm going to run a JL cleansweep which will feed to a 5 channel amp that will power my front and rear door speakers and a subwoofer.

So, this lets me replace everything, have it sound great while still retaining the factory stereo. That way I still have my bluetooth, I still have my aux and ipod connection, I still have all my steering wheels controls and things look 'normal' which draws less attention from potential thieves.

You can probably just do a cleansweep and then have it power stock speakers and maybe a small amp and sub and it would still be a major improvement to the stock sound.

I've been spending the last few weeks waiting for my car planning my stereo :)
 

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@sync,thanks a lot,sounds like a good idea,it would sound good but then the compromise would be with the navigation on a new HU.But I can live with that.Also I like the conspicuous part.Please post pics of the installation process if you r gng to do it urself.
 

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@sync,thanks a lot,sounds like a good idea,it would sound good but then the compromise would be with the navigation on a new HU.But I can live with that.Also I like the conspicuous part.Please post pics of the installation process if you r gng to do it urself.
Navigation = GPS unit! Cheaper, you can stash it when you don't need it to keep things looking nice and honestly probably better than most head-unit nav systems unless you are willing to pay big bucks. I personally have an iphone and have the Navigon app for that which is good for most situations.

As far as the price of the CleanSweep, you can get them from just about anywhere you want. Bear in mind however that JL audio and most automotive audio dealers will not honor their products warranties if they are purchased from a non-authorized retailer.

http://mobile.jlaudio.com/jlaudio_pages.php?page_id=111

That's a list of JL audio's authorized retailers. My advice is to click through that list and see who has the best deal. I saved $200 on my 5 channel amp purchasing it through CarToys during their Black Friday sales event rather than going through Crutchfield. They are still an authorized Alpine dealer too so it's all on the up and up. Pays to shop around! ;)

I still haven't committed one way or the other to doing the install myself or not. On one hand I know I can do it and would get a good deal of satisfaction from it, but on the other hand it's also winter in New England. It's dark and cold when I get out of work and I'm always busy on the weekends so it's far more practical to use a trusted audio installation expert. Plus not having to worry about buying and measuring wires and mounting equipment is a plus. I'll probably have them install the cleansweep and amp and run the wiring and I'll mount the sub enclosure and wire that myself. We'll see...

This is the sub box I'm looking at: Audio Integrations

And here is a youtube video of an install in a hatchback.

It is kinda pricey for an enclosure but the fit and finish of it is suburb. I'm not really interested in having the kind of system that takes up your whole trunk and is like multiple amps, capacitors, multiple subs and junk. I'm just looking for something that is pretty discreet and really is only noticeable when you turn on the stereo and hear the quality. Got to keep it classy. :cool:
 

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if you go aftermarket, you will loose the aux imput jack and ipod connector.
Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't it just a standard USB jack as well as a standard audio jack? I don't see why you can't nab those cables and run them to a decent after market head unit.

I'd swap that sucker out for a nice after market one. The after market head units are so nice sound quality and feature wise compared to stock ones normally. Get the steering wheel adapter from crutchfield posted above.

Only problem being that I doubt the bluetooth module is compliant, but never know.

I think you'd get much better sound quality out of that than a DSP chip post-stock head unit. You can't make up lost audio quality =(. I'm sure the DSP chip would help a lot, but myself personally, would rather just get a nice after market unit.

Alpine and Pioneer both make nice ones. I am not a Pioneer fan, but people that have them love them. I like Alpines navigation with primarily the one big knob. Easier to use while driving and not paying much attention to finding buttons.
 

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2011 audio

This is what is going in my 011 as soon as the damn thing comes in!!!

Alpine INA-W900 Head unit
PXA-H100 Imprint Processor
Alpine PDX 4.100
Alpine PDX 1.600
Alpine BT400 Blue tooth
Alpine Sir-Tuner
Alpine DHA-S680 DVD Changer
Audio Solutions 10" molded sub box
JL Audio 10W3v3 10" sub
PAC Audio Steering Wheel Module
PAC Audio TR7 Video Bypass
CDT Braxial 6.5" front and rear stages
CDT US-200 Upstage front passive Crossover
Vifa Upstage a-pilar tweeters (Up Stage)
Dynamat galour!!!

My mazdaspeed 3 had a stereo that was over the top the aforementioned system is going to be tame, but great sounding!
 

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This is what is going in my 011 as soon as the damn thing comes in!!!

Alpine INA-W900 Head unit
PXA-H100 Imprint Processor
Alpine PDX 4.100
Alpine PDX 1.600
Alpine BT400 Blue tooth
Alpine Sir-Tuner
Alpine DHA-S680 DVD Changer
Audio Solutions 10" molded sub box
JL Audio 10W3v3 10" sub
PAC Audio Steering Wheel Module
PAC Audio TR7 Video Bypass
CDT Braxial 6.5" front and rear stages
CDT US-200 Upstage front passive Crossover
Vifa Upstage a-pilar tweeters (Up Stage)
Dynamat galour!!!

My mazdaspeed 3 had a stereo that was over the top the aforementioned system is going to be tame, but great sounding!
Looks like a pretty good setup. One question... how do you plan to mount the tweeters in the a-pillar with the airbags being there?
 

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you cant. to mount aftermarket tweeters in these cars so expensive am i correct?? because a lot has to be taken off for rewiring
 

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Pioneer is having some great deals at the moment.

If you don't need navigation/bluetooth, you can get the AVH-4200HD for under $350.

If you do want bluetooth/navigation, the AVIC-920BT is $650 after a $100MIR.
 

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you cant. to mount aftermarket tweeters in these cars so expensive am i correct?? because a lot has to be taken off for rewiring
I would just use the stock tweeter location if I were replacing the speakers
 

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Sony also <fairly> recently launched their own series of NAV headunits, and similar to kenwood who teamed up with Garmin, they teamed up with TomTom.

That way you know you're getting a good GPS, plus it will have that OEM+ look to it since it fits right in the double DIN slot.

Get the aforementioned adapters for your steering wheel controls, get a little fancy with your iPod connector (the sony has the capability, you might just have to change out the subaru plug for theirs), and voila - best of all worlds

Crutchfield has them here

sony nav at Crutchfield.com

but I've seen the cheaper one for like $680 on Amazon.

This is the route I'm taking after my wedding this summer (i.e. have money to spend again)
 
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