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Discussion Starter #1
Okay, so a month or two ago I finally broke down and got myself an iPod. Great mp3 player, only problem is it hardly ever gets used. I'm thinking if it could be used in the car, I would be a lot more likely to use it. Right now I have the stock 6-disc Audiophile sound system. Near as I can tell, there is no kind of aux. input on the head unit.

I bought one of those FM transmitters - sucked crap. Terrible, ended up just returning it. So maybe it's time to bite the bullet and upgrade to an aftermarket head unit that has a built-in aux. input. Problem there is that I can't stand the style of all the popular brands out there. Sorry, folks, but a lot of the headunits out there are too trendy or just plain ugly.

I have fallen in love with the simple, clean looks of Nakamichi's head units - the only thing is, other than the fact that they're SUPPOSED to be good, I don't know much about Nakamichi stereos. Looking at the specs, they seem good enough?? But the specs don't tell the whole story. Anyone have any pros or cons? Specifically looking at the CD-400 unit - I have spotted it on eBay for just under $300. No, I don't want to buy the super-freakin' expensive $1300 Nakamichi - trying to stay in normal price territories here.
 

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I know they come in stock in the Lexus and it sounds OK in there but Other than that I don't know much. Just wanted to reccomend a brand to you that I'm very happy with. The Alpine CDA-9807 MP3 player. Sells for about $280.00 at stores but got mine off ebay for $210.00. You might want to check that out, really hard to go wrong with Alpine. Just my 2 cents.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the reply. Yeah, Alpine has always been a favorite brand of mine - I have an Alpine head unit that has gone through three different cars, I've had it since 1996! The only thing there is that Alpine has changed their style to be more "flashy" like all the other major consumer brands. I don't want six million buttons, twenty different colors, flip down faceplates, etc, etc. Otherwise Alpine it would be.
 

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I hear ya withn all the flashiness and buttons to it. Still havent figured out all that goes on with mine, but I just use the remote and theres only like 5 buttons to deal with on it, the important one. One more brand that to me is second to the Alpine and pretty stealth when it comes to looks is an Eclipse, very good brand.
 

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Mr. Wizard
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I was just about to say Eclipse, very clean look, not alot of trick features (heck the face plate doesn't even detach), but it has better than solid performance, high voltage preouts for a real clean sound. They make a 5V unit, that is very nice, and has aux hookup I'm pretty sure.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Eclipse, huh? I'll check into it. I know Devotion2a on here seemed to like Eclipse - at least until it got stolen... [V]
 

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Well, I've heard a system in an M3 a while back with a Nakamichi HU, Zapco amps and Diamond speakers in the shop where they were putting it together. It was before fine-tuning, but man, it sounded very clean - granted, it was a higher-end unit.

Just a suggestion, if the 6 disc audiophile system can handle a CD Changer (I don't know if it does) and you don't have one attached then you can use the connection for an aux input. Check http://www.installer.com/aux/index.html for it. Just recommended it to an other guy here - few threads down - you can also check with him if he gets it how it works out.

If not, you can always get an Alpine or Eclipse as the others said ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
New question - the Audiophile package includes a subwoofer, does the subwoofer have it's own amplifier separate from the head unit? Or does the head unit's power supply drive all the speakers AND the subwoofer?? That would mean adding an aftermarket head unit would also necessitate at least also purchasing an amp for the subwoofer. Yeah, I probably should for better quality anyway, but I'm working on a budget here.
 

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Mr. Wizard
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I would think there is a stock amplifier powering the stock sub, I don't think that the stock HU can handle that much of a power difference.
 

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First question: Nakamichi is one of the best products out on the market today. The reason that you dont hear a whole lot about them is that they are designed with the audiophile in mind and they keep their headunits very simple. They have outstanding sound quality, they never break, and they use a 3 beam holographic laser which will read just about any cd even if its totally scratched. If you want simplicity and clean looks you cannot go wrong with a Nakamichi

Second Question: The factory Audiophile system has a auxillary amplifier that runs the subwoofer. If you want to add an aftermarket headunit there are harnesses that will plug into the factory wiring and the new headunit to interface the old with the new. This is the best way to add a headunit without having to rewire the entire car.
 
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