Review 4 of 6|
from Brands Mart
Year / Model Reviewed:
Reads almost anything (cd media).
Remembers prior state always.
Seems to do great with all my mp3s.
Internal amp is very nice.
3 rca output.
Ability to turn off internal amp.
Sub channel control.
Feels very solid (tough unit)
Glows blue and just looks tight.
CD TEXT / mp3 titles are hard to see entire title on large segmented display (large font).
Preset buttons hard to see in daylight.
Tonal adjustment a bit confusing.
Volume knob is metal on front, ruber gripped around edges -- it's easy to scratch the 'machined look' of the front of the dial.
Really clean sounding -- especially when I paired it with alpine front and rears. I have two of these, both in 99 civics. The overall feel of this unit is very nice. It feels 'complete' with respect to features. As with any unit, there were things I didn't care for but over all I would purchase again without a 2nd thought. The unit seem to be quite forgiving on cd media (cdr vs cdrw vs cd...) and I have never experienced skips (of course mine is brand new. I used to work for Best Buy's service center so I imagine I will be doing a laser cleaning myself if it ever needs one. With that last statement, you might gather that I have seen lots of head units and might be able to compare them across the board with this one. I would say that (keep in mind that best buy sells some really nice stuff and some really crappy stuff) overall the unit was of much higher construction quality than I am used to seeing. I felt like I could drop it or bang it on stuff with little worry about it holding up. The bass and treble (and lack of midrange) adjustments aren't the greatest. Once you figure them out you will see that you can adjust for midrange, highs, and lows but it's confusing. Basically you can choose center points on high and low and adjust a curve around it.. which in itself allows you to go below or above midrange so it acomplishes it in a less than user friendly way. My experience with the unit is that In both cars (with full aftermarket sound systems outside the head unit) I ended up leaving the factory high/low center settings and bumping high up +2 and low +1 and that provided what my ear said 'sounded right'. One of my cars has this unit with a 4 channel amp for the fronts and rears and the other does not. It is safe to say that the one without does not have any problem powering some high end apline speakers and I probably don't need the amp in my other car (the head unit is plenty powerful). One thing I didn't care for was that the preset buttons (which act as mix/loop and various other functions in cd/mp3 mode) are hard to see in the daylight ... they have a 'white' section on silver which vanishes if direct sunlight hits it... at night, this white section glows and is very visable.
A side note about the MX (media expander) feature. It's not a magic wand. If you are using a CD or a clean signal from a radio station, leave it off. If you have a dirty signal, turn it on! All it ever did for me was add more high/lows and make the midrange sound a bit different when I used it on a cd. On a dirty radio station it does a great job of bringing out the mids and making them clean without static and the highs and lows, while a bit less accurate, are at least there at that point. It's not turning a dirty signal into a clean one, it's 'mending' a dirty one, into something that sounds about right and much better than static!
Overall great unit... a few things could be improved upon but it's one I would get again.