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View Full Version : New stereo - help me decide



anabolicone
03-29-2010, 10:09 PM
Ok, I have a 2007 LSV and I am upgrading my head unit. I need some help deciding on which head unit from you fellas that know more about radios then I do.
I am going with the Kenwood simply cause it has the wired remote the KCA-RC107

THe choice is between Kenwood KMR-700U http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_21687_Kenwood+Marine+KMR-700U.html

or
Kenwood KMR-440u http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_23364_Kenwood+Marine+KMR-440U.html
cant find many reviews on either throughout the net
I have seen the pics of the KMR 700u on this site but can someone tell me which is the better of the two - there is about $60 difference... and both seem to be about the same..
Love some imput so I can order.
thanks fellas

c.rix
03-29-2010, 10:41 PM
I don't have any experience with the 440u but just installed a 700u with the remote on the drivers side. Very nice unit. Very user friendly, easy to read, can do about everything with the remote you can do with the deck.
It def gets my vote.
The only downside is that its a little tight in the glovebox with the front access panel.

u have some pics installed?

you da man
03-29-2010, 11:36 PM
I was toying with the idea of a nice Alpine headunit with Alpine remotes, however, David at Earmark Marine said that with the right EQ/pre-amp and tuning the stock headunit is fine and basically just an interface for the ipod

jmvotto
03-30-2010, 08:52 AM
kenwood 700u looks cool, I do like the alpine pdx100 ipod control. but for the money the kenwood kdc x493 or x494 is a pretty good bargin with good ipod interface and three 4v pre-outs.

sandm
03-30-2010, 09:15 AM
did the 700u and love it. kind of a stretch losing the cd capability for those of us that grew up on that media, but it is a snap to use and has more than enough adjustability for any system, and 4volt outputs :)

it will get my vote until something new comes out to replace it....

keep in mind tho that the kenwood 700u is NOT compatible with any of the old wired remotes. you must order the one that is specific to it, contrary to what anyone else may tell you. the plugs were completely different between the remote for my 400 and the 700u remote, so if you have existing wired remotes, they must be replaced.

c.rix
03-30-2010, 10:30 AM
did the 700u and love it. kind of a stretch losing the cd capability for those of us that grew up on that media, but it is a snap to use and has more than enough adjustability for any system, and 4volt outputs :)

it will get my vote until something new comes out to replace it....

keep in mind tho that the kenwood 700u is NOT compatible with any of the old wired remotes. you must order the one that is specific to it, contrary to what anyone else may tell you. the plugs were completely different between the remote for my 400 and the 700u remote, so if you have existing wired remotes, they must be replaced.

ahhh that sucks cause the remotes are like 100 buck each right?

I may end up getting a eq and keeping the stock radio then

c.rix
03-30-2010, 10:32 AM
I was toying with the idea of a nice Alpine headunit with Alpine remotes, however, David at Earmark Marine said that with the right EQ/pre-amp and tuning the stock headunit is fine and basically just an interface for the ipod

did david recommend any Eq's specifically?

byronkoz
03-30-2010, 12:32 PM
I was toying with the idea of a nice Alpine headunit with Alpine remotes, however, David at Earmark Marine said that with the right EQ/pre-amp and tuning the stock headunit is fine and basically just an interface for the ipod

Most EQ's have an Aux input you can use for an Ipod, thats how I run mine. Last year I didnt even run a deck in my boat. This year I decided to put another deck in so I can listen to CD's just incase I forget my Ipod, happend a couple times last year.

jmvotto
03-30-2010, 12:46 PM
did david recommend any Eq's specifically?

This is what is on there site. most peeps have the clarion or the wetsounds on the BB. Clarion can be had for cheap on ebay, WS is pretty much a fixed price. depends on the type of control you want, fader or two section( tower/boat) volume and eq controls

http://www.earmarkcaraudio.com/Xcart/home.php?cat=269

sandm
03-30-2010, 01:22 PM
if all you are looking for is ipod controls, most of them offer an ipod adapter that you can add in. the factory kenwood 400 has a black box that I belive runs around $100 that allows you to add an ipod to the aux input on the back instead of a cd changer or satellite radio. your ipod controls are somewhat limited with that, but it works. that's the big advantage to swapping out to the 700u. it's ipod controls are supposed to be awesome. I have only used mine with a usb drive, but it had no issues navigating multiple files on one drive.

the $100 cost per remote does suck, but I found the level of control from both the remote and the deck features are well worth the few extra $$ over just upgrading the deck..

anabolicone
03-30-2010, 02:33 PM
Ok so whats the deal with 4volt preoutputs vs 2.5v -- can some one explain..?

tha other question for those that have replaced headunits and the new wired remote... Was the wired remote install pretty simple, how does it look in the same place as the crappy wired remotes that came in the 2007 lsv ... guess Im wanting to know if its going to look like a factory install job or an aftermarket job....?

sandm
03-30-2010, 02:45 PM
someone from the audio forums needs to chime in on the technical reasons, but 4volt offers the amp a stronger signal and makes the amplified music cleaner..

follow this one for pics of the deck,remote..

http://moomba.com/msgboard/showthread.php?t=9578&page=3

ausbill32
03-30-2010, 03:56 PM
I just installed a new head unit a couple of weeks ago and went with the Alpine CDA-9886M because it was cheaper, it has 3 sets of 4v amp pre outs, it has both USB and iPod hook up (I use both), built in equalizer, and subwoofer level adjustment. I bought all my stuff online from crutchfield.com (great service, I would not buy from Sonixelectronix lots of horror stories). I have 3 amps total (2 music, 1 sub) which is why I wanted a head unit with 3 sets of outputs because it makes it easier to wire and control. (Front tower, rear inboat, and then the sub). The only bad thing about the Alpine I purchased is that if you have a new iPhone 3GS you have to buy a $25 Schoche adapter otherwise, it won't charge when connected. I'm happy to report though that with this use of the adpater my iPhone and iPod charge and work with full functionality. As for the USB use, I tested 3 different USB sticks and all worked well as I can browse through any folder and play all the songs in a folder (If you have an encrypted USB device that requires secure password to log on, it will not work).

My second option to this Alpine was the Kenwood 700U that you are considering. I didn't even consider the 440U because it didn't have enough outputs for me. The only things I didn't like about the 700U is it's size and it didn't have standard USB connection otherwise, I would have been sold. I'm sure I could have purchased some AUX thing to make the USB work but didn't want to hassle with that.

My boat does not have a rear transom controller installed and I didn't want to drill a hole in my boat so I purchased a small RF water proof remote called the Alpine RUE. It works awesome!!! The wireless sensor is tucked up in the cubby hole and connects to the wires on the back side of the head unit. I have my head unit inside the glove box. I can change songs, volume, and play lists on my iPod or USB with the RF remote from 10-15 feet away standing outside the boat in any direction and it's water proof. That should come in handy if I'm sitting on some elses boat next to mine and I want to change my tunes or control the radio completly by locking the glove box. I do have to memorize my play lists though as the RF remote does not have a digital display like most transom mounted controllers. Last week when I was driving around, I had the RF remote in my lap and when I wanted to change songs I just raised it up to look at it. It worked out really well as I didn't ever have to look down to controll the radio while driving or I could toss it to other people sitting in the boat to control. I even tested the water proof factor; I dipped it under the water for 15 seconds, pulled it out, and it still worked. Sweet !! I think that Alpine remote works with almost all Alpine head units so don't think that it only works with the one I purchased.


http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_17574_Alpine+CDA-9886M.html

http://signature.crutchfield.com/s_500RUEM1RF/Alpine-RUE-M1RF.html?search=RUE-M1RF+&ssi=0&tp=29997

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_16295_Scosche+passPORT+-+Charging+Adapter+for+iPod+touch+2G%2C+iPod+nano+4 G%2C+iPhone+3G.html

Brianinpdx
03-30-2010, 04:11 PM
Here's a little case study for the group. As you know, Mike has had his boat at the Exile Facility for awhile now as he does some big time upgrades. When he first pulled in, one of the suggestions I made for him was ditch that old Kenwood head unit before you do ANYTHING. The reason for this is because of voltage. Mike wants a lot out of his stereo performance wise. He's spending a lot of money on upgrades for the tower, sub, cabin speakers etc etc.

With this in mind, I tell guys every day, "Your stereo system is only as good as its weakest link!". For some that might be the cabin speakers. Others the tower speakers, still some the sub setup. Or it may be the charging system. For Mike, it was his entry level head unit.

I'm not advocating everyone has to have a 300.00 source unit. In Mikes case, he wanted something that he could plug his ipod into, was marine safe, and was good quality and had a remote. Those features are all things on the surface. Under the surface, he needs a deck that has high voltage out, has good interface, and high quality output stage/design. He decided on the kenwood 700U deck. I think he made a good choice.

Lets break it down further.... Why does the increased voltage matter from a deck? really simple answer is it makes your amplifiers work less hard to achieve full potential. A clipped or compressed signal from your deck sounds really ugly after your amplifier "amplifies" the sound. Remember amps fall under the garbage in, garbage out rule. Feed them clean signals and they should give you the same in return. the whole key is to run your system within its limits. going beyond the limits will expose ugly sound! and that only sounds good after a sixpack of beer.

Bottom line: use decks with high voltage outputs.

As a side note to all of this, one could argue (and be right), why get a new deck when you could put a line driver into place and get the amps a great clean signal. Yes, true! and they typically cost less than 100 bucks.

So my advice is this: if you want to keep a simple deck on the boat, buy it a line driver and in effect use it as a place to plug in an ipod or other device. If you want the full features of decks with remotes etc and integrated ipod control, make DAMN sure you buy one with 4 V preouts.

just my 2 cents worth,

-Brian
Exile Audio

anabolicone
03-30-2010, 04:29 PM
My second option to this Alpine was the Kenwood 700U that you are considering. I didn't even consider the 440U because it didn't have enough outputs for me. The only things I didn't like about the 700U is it's size and it didn't have standard USB connection otherwise, I would have been sold. I'm sure I could have purchased some AUX thing to make the USB work but didn't want to hassle with that.




In all the reading , I thought the 700U did have the standard USB connection...?

Thanks Brian for the definitive explanation -- think I will spend the extra $$ on the 700U
-- one additional question - when installing the 700U - does the unit simply slide in the exisiting DIN with no cutting - just securing with screws or do you have to MOD/cut the factory cutout. ?

byronkoz
03-30-2010, 05:20 PM
Another point about using only an eq and an ipod: You can't control that from the transom. At least with the Alpine or Kenwood you can have the 2 extra remotes. That's worth a lot to me. I use my transom remote all the time.

Yup. Another reason im going back to a deck, so I can pop in a CD and actually use my transome remote! Didnt realize how much I used it till I didnt have use of it anymore.

sandm
03-30-2010, 06:00 PM
700u does have usb connectivity. there's 2 cables behind the flipdown door. one is an ipod/iphone cable and the other is usb for thumbdrives. no cd tho, so you have to be ready to ditch that. had I known that the 700u did not work with the old kenwood remotes, I probably would have researched other decks from clarion/alpine, but was originally lead to believe that they would work based on crutchfield's website. didn't find out until I was wiring the deck that they won't work. so had to pop the $100 for the new remote..
am more than happy with the 700u, but I am betting I would also be happy with alpine as well.. really, both are excellent choices.

Brianinpdx
03-30-2010, 06:02 PM
anabolicone - I didnt install it, so we should have Newty or Mandley chime in as they both put them in their LSV's. From what I saw, its a tight fit in the glove box area but worked out just fine.

- Brian
Exile Audio

sandm
03-30-2010, 06:06 PM
anabolicone, the 700u does have different dimentions than any other deck on the market, but the chassis does slide into a standard din cutout, so in essence, you remove the stock deck and replace, but it may not be that easy depending on the placement. I'll let some others with moomba's answer this one as my supra has a different placement. I had to build a trim panel to fit behind the 700u, as it was taller/skinnier than the stock deck and skiers did not wrap the grey dash vinyl to the din cutout, but rather just enough to get it under the factory radio, so when I installed the 700, it left pieces of plain fiberglas showing on either end of it. glovebox placement will alter what you may/may not have to do. the remotes are slightly larger than the factory units though, so if you have a remote installed in the dash, that should be an easy replacement and look good cosmetically.

Aquaholic
03-30-2010, 10:01 PM
I vote Clarion CMD6. The pic is in my XLV so......

anabolicone
04-12-2010, 02:23 PM
Installed the Kenwood 700U stereo and remote this weekend - Instal was pretty simple and looks good... sounds better but.....
I didnt realize I was going to have to buy an extension cable for the remote .. kinda crappy not tho throw that in as well...
So for those that have installed this combo did you purchase the 3 meter or 7 meter cable.. and where did you purchase from?

suggest a website /store -- thanks

mmandley
04-12-2010, 10:58 PM
I got the cable from the shop i bought my deck with. I got the 7m cable for 30 bucks. I used most of the length of cable but that is due to running it with my main harness for other things so it would be a seamless install.

I hope to finally mount my amps and get all the rest of my pics tomorrow for the stereo install.