Aftermarket Headunit recommendations

Discussion in 'Electronics' started by Abb, Apr 2, 2017.

  1. Abb

    Abb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I am assisting my nephew sourcing a aftermarket headunit for his 2009 W209 CLK coupe. The only thing letting the car down is the outdated in car entertainment.
    I think its possibly an audio 20, but can't be sure, basically a sleek looking unit but very basic with no bells or whistles.
    He was looking to find one mainly to stream his music from phone to headunit, as well as playing other sources of music. Not overly fussed about having in built sat nav (loves his TomTom). Have looked at a few of Alpines offerings which seem to be good but has anyone had any real life experience of doing this conversion?
    Any recommendation on make/model etc?
    Any tips on fittings?
    Interface harnesses?

    Thank you for any info.
     
  2. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    Trust me I spent days working this out, my CLK is now fitted with a Pioneer SPH-Da120, before we begin does he have an iphone?
     
  3. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    This is the cabling which allows steering wheel controls to work, the fascia and cage and aerial adaptor all in one kit

    Car Audio Equipment | Buy online at Car Audio Security

    Remember to buy the relevant patch lead for the steering wheel harness depending on brand of stereo. (I can help you out once you decide which stereo you want)
     
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  4. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    I highly recommend the Pioneer SPH-Da102 £300 new or £150-200 used...

    This unit has a very very nice touchscreen and if he has an iPhone is absolutely perfect. If android he can stream music via BT and also has AppRadio support if you get the correct cable for the android phone etc although it's basically best for an iPhone

    Kenwood I don't recommend at all, had rubbish audio out of one I had... COMAND UK also stopped supplying Kenwood due to issues
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2017
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  5. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    Conversion went smoothly for me

    Only Issue is clock won't change automatically for me although the interface promises that this will work. And where it usually says Nav on cluster is a blank screen

    Solution: £100 coding sessions at COMAND or any other star equipped place to enable manual clock setting and remove the black option which I need to get done ASAP

    your nephew will have neither of these problems as he didn't have a COMAND in Initially... it should be trouble free for him :)
     
  6. dan-mb

    dan-mb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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  7. OP
    OP
    Abb

    Abb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Thank you for all the info clk320x, interesting points. He does have an iphone and didn't have comand. I will take a look at the pioneer unit you mention.
     
  8. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    The Pioneer is excellent value for money

    Look up carplay which is essentially what the unit is perfect for

    Plug in your iPhone and it essentially goes onto the radio screen
    And your phone is always charged up when you finish your journey :)

    As he doesn't have a comand the fitting is very very simple and there should be no issues at all

    Keep us updated
     
  9. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    Really wouldn't recommend that

    It's a bit of a lottery with those Chinese units some are good some are absolutely rubbish

    Plus the touch screens etc are not very nice... as well as audio quality :)

    I'd recommend a good branded option but I guess each to their own
     
  10. dan-mb

    dan-mb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    ok thanks it has good reviews, any good suggestions suitable for android samsung s7 phones?
     
  11. OP
    OP
    Abb

    Abb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    So am I right in thinking, in addition to the actual head unit to make it plug n play, he would need that fitting kit and a patch lead? The kit is £80, how much would the patch lead cost for that pioneer unit?
     
  12. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    Yes you are correct

    He would need the kit I link first for £80. This includes the steering wheel interface, the fascia , the cage which holds the stereo in, and the aerial adaptor

    Then the pioneer patch lead which connects from the steering interface to the radio is £3.99 from the same supplier

    Car Audio Equipment | Buy online at Car Audio Security
     
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  13. ilunn

    ilunn Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I'll watch this as I'm also considering this type (Chinese) units. I have a Xtrons unit about 5 years old and would not recommend it but its old technology so they may have improved somewhat, Problem is its not until one uses them that one finds pitfalls and its no good just trying one in a shop one need to be on the move, these are some of the issues with the older units from china:-
    (1) Radio does NOT auto retune to stronger signal (50 mile trip and I would loose station). The only way to get it back was to auto search.
    (2) when using Sat nav when voice direction kicks in (which it does a lot) it would not just lower the volume of audio it would switch it off altogether for good few seconds which is not good when traffic reports are being broadcast.
    (3) the touch screen is difficult to see in bright sunlight.
    (4) user manual is absolutely useless, partly throu being badly written then compounded by poor translation, the way i describe this is " wrote by a graduate who has no idea :dk:, then translated by school leaver how just uses translater off internet :confused:.
     
  14. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    If it has good reviews maybe give it a shot, if your after OEM look over anything else :)

    If it, as for Abb the Pioneer is an excellent unit, but for satnav it relies on the iPhone plugged in so it won't be any good for you.

    It does have an 'appradio' function where it can mirror and android if you buy the correct adaptor id encourage you to research this further

    If all you need is BT and good audio it's brilliant aswell, if you use say waze on your phone screen
     
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  15. 400ixl

    400ixl Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    You can get the same functionality through Android Auto that Carplay provides.

    Pioneer amongst others do Android Auto head units.

    Equally you can get the full Pioneer Appradio Mode experience with Android through the stereo's with advanced mode which gives better functionality than the iPhones get.

    Want to get really creative and get a full HDMI model then there is an App that I used to help support called AppRadio Unchained which allows you to fully mirror your phone screen and basically do everything your phone can. The developer is currently doing a non root version. May be a step to far, but if not I can give you the links.
     
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  16. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    The SPH-DA120 has HDMI input :) :bannana:
     
  17. 400ixl

    400ixl Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    Yes, Appradio 4 does and is one of the AppRadio Unchained supported Head Units.

    The 8700BT is another which adds DAB and inbuilt satnav which the DA120 does not.

    I have got several Appradio's sat in the garage from my previous car and the support i used to help provide on XDA devleopers right back from the original Iphone and Android (AppRadion unleashed) hacks to make them useful.

    Personally Carplay and Android Auto are pretty over rated and limited in functionality (by design) compared to what they are really capable of doing with the right software. Although the iPhone hacking community pretty much died due to the restrictions Apple put into their iOS, but Android has really kicked on and doing good things.
     
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  18. clk320x

    clk320x MB Club Veteran

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    I use CarPlay

    I think it does enough and is really efficient

    More and more apps are being supported over time

    I use Spotify for music and Apple Maps does a brilliant job for sat-Nav

    Aswell as messages and phone calls etc

    Siri is also very useful
     
  19. dan-mb

    dan-mb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    I need Spotify, Bluetooth, hands-free, sat nav preferably google maps. Bonus if had an 'old school' cd slot as i prefer the quality of music circa £300-£400 fitted. Android friendly is a must.
     
  20. dan-mb

    dan-mb Hardcore MB Enthusiast

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    the AVH-X8700BT sounds spot on for me. £509 off amazon any one know of cheapest place to get a hold of it?
     

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