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Audio & Video Tech General discussion of audio and video for the Ford Ranger.

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  #1  
Old 05-30-2007
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Crutchfield.com

When ordering from crutchfield.com when you get a stereo do you get everything with it? Would you get every thing you would get if you took it to best buy and had them install it (as far as functuality and cosmetics)?

I am wanting a new stereo and was curious becuase I went to car toys and they were going to charge me 45 bucks for all the stuff I needed.
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Old 05-30-2007
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you get the install kit and the wiring plug from www.crutchfield.com .........if you go to Best Buy, not only do you have to buy the install dash kit and the wiring harness, but you also have to pay for them to install it.......which the install of a HU in a Ranger is SUPER easy....
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Old 05-30-2007
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Yah definately but from Crutchffield. Yes, they cost a bit more. But they have some of the finest customer service out there. They go the extra mile.

Oh and I agree with above, Ranger cd players are easy to install.
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Old 05-30-2007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Red_Ak_Ranger
Yes, they cost a bit more. But they have some of the finest customer service out there. They go the extra mile.


and they really are not that much more than other venders...
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  #5  
Old 05-30-2007
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So next question and I am sure I will get alot opinions. I am looking at Alpine, what do you guys think of Alpine and if you think there is something better what should I look at.
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  #6  
Old 05-30-2007
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i personally only like Pioneer......i wont have anything else other than Pioneer...
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  #7  
Old 05-30-2007
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I've always been a Pioneer and Alpine supporter. Tried Kenwood a few times and was dissapointed. If you like Alpine, then just purchase the model that suits you best. I've never had issues with their equipment.

Crutchfield also provides a very nice set of installation instructions with all their stereos, along with awesome phone support. They also tell you which tools you might need, and can sell you custom tools. Like Alpine, I've never had problems with Crutchfield.

And yes, the Ranger is rediculously easy for stereo installs.
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Old 05-30-2007
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I've bought from Crutchfield for YEARS.... maybe 15 or 20 years.

Sometimes their stuff is a little higher than other online places or ebay, BUT their tech & customer service is some of the best out there. You can even chat online with them.

You can enter your vehicle info on their site & it will show speakers, head units, etc that fit YOUR specific vehicle.

If you plan on running multiple amps (or a multi channel amp) look for 2 or more pair of RCA outputs.
Some stereos even have front/rear/sub outputs so you don't need an extra crossover. This will allow you to fade between front & rear in addition to left & right. Helpful when you set up the system. Turn the fader to rear & set the levels for rear speakers, repeat for front speakers.

A lot of new units will play cd-r's with mp3 formatted songs. You can get a lot more songs per cd, but the quality won't be as good.

I've seen a lot with ipod adapters, usb inputs for flash drives, cd changer controls, satellite radio adapters....all good stuff to consider.
I don't have an ipod (unless someone wants to send me one - hint, hint), but the usb connector would be nice to plug in a 2gb thumb drive with a couple hundred high quality mp3's or wav files on it.
I haven't used a cd changer in probably 10 years. I just keep a couple cheap cd holders with cd's I've burned. If somebody breaks in & steals my cd's, I'm out $5 and an hour to make some new ones.
I refuse to pay $10 - $20 a month for satellite radio, no matter how cool the programming is supposed to be.

If I were getting a new head unit, I'd want a built in equalizer with a display... I like to see the bouncing, flashing lights.

I like a detachable faceplate too. If anybody is EVER in my vehicle (like at the quickie lube place) I don't want them screwing with my stereo.
This happened to me with my first truck when some A$$HOLE at the dealership decided he wanted to listen to the radio while he worked on my truck. He cranked my system all freakin' day & fried my speakers, ran my battery down and changed most of my presets. I was not a happy camper. It took three paramedics to remove my foot from his butt.

I believe with their head units over $129 you get all the stuff you'll need; adapter from factory wire harness, dash plate, etc.
With speakers, you usually get the factory adapters too.

I've only used their in-dash wiring harness to bare wire connector. Makes new installs a breeze, just a few crimp on butt connectors & it's done in half an hour.

I paid the $4 (at the time) for the Ford stereo removal tool, and I've used it on several Fords over the years. You can probably make one out of a coat hanger too.

I'd DEFINITELY do the install myself (in fact, I have... several times), unless you have absolutely no grasp of simple hand tools.
I could probably remove & install my head unit blindfolded by now.
A couple of screwdrivers, a crimp tool, wire stripper, some electrical tape, cable ties and that's about all you need to install a head unit. If you're afraid to tackle it, watch their install videos first, it's simple.

The money you'd throw away at best buy could be used to go towards a better head unit or a new pair of speakers.

As long as you stick with a big name brand Sony, Alpine, Kenwood, Blaupunkt, Pioneer, you should be fine. The no-name stuff is probably ok, but in ten years when you want to sell your old BRAND-X head unit, you probably won't get as much for it if it were a Sony, etc.

Check 'em all out, find the features YOU want, find a style & interface you like and go for it. You'll be glad you did.
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Old 05-30-2007
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^^^yeah, what he said^^^
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  #10  
Old 05-30-2007
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buggman that is a hell of a wright up. There were a lot of good points in your post.

Thanks

It will give me alot to think about in the next week or so when I am ordering my new HU.
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  #11  
Old 05-31-2007
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Almost forgot....make sure the faceplate colors are complimentary to your interior/dash lights.
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  #12  
Old 05-31-2007
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I highly recommend alpine. I have the alpine CDA 9856. It kicks freaking butt. Sounds great and has decent power. Now if you're really going to put amps and subs in it, you may not want the model I have. Mine is sort of a mid range radio if you ask me. The price was actually the same from everywhere else.

They will include the install kit and wiring harness. Best part is Install is free and easy and its done by someone you can trust.. You!

Me and my dad did it in an afternoon. We even had to call tech support and they were really helpfull. Tad bit tough to get through but they were just busy.

Hope that helps. BTW if you do get an alpine make sure to get the IPOD cable. DONT buy a FM transmitter, the cable ipod hookup is 10x better. Better sound quality and it recharges and keeps your ipod charged as long as its hooked up.
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  #13  
Old 05-31-2007
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the new alpine decks are junk.. get pioneer
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  #14  
Old 05-31-2007
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I was actually looking at getting an alpine CDA-9883. They seem to get good reviews. Right now I have a Sony CDX-GT510 and I really like it, you can also set the colors to match the gauges at night. Pioneer is also good, I would stay away from Kenwood tho, I spent allot of money on Kenwood equipment and IMO there are far better for far less money....
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  #15  
Old 05-31-2007
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Crutchfield is really good with thier customer service, there's no doubt about that.

But I already knew how to install a stereo in a car. I don't need the instructions or the cheesy Ford Radio Removal Tool. I bought a Pioneer Premier CD player a few months ago from www.sonicelectronix.com. The have better prices than Crutchfield and they also send you the dash install kit and wiring harness. Even though you have to pay shipping, it is still far cheaper than Crutchfield.

And, if you decide to get a Pioneer, Crutchfield doesn't offer the Premier line of decks that I've seen. Sonic offers the Pioneer's Premier line for the same money many times giving you higher voltage per-outs and and extra year warranty for no extra cost. It's hard to pass that up.
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  #16  
Old 05-31-2007
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i go with sony or pioneer, i trust those the best, alpines not bad either, its more just up to personal taste...
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  #17  
Old 05-31-2007
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Seminaryranger, that websire sonicelectronix has some great prices. Thanks.
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  #18  
Old 05-31-2007
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What do you guys think about these types of stereos. I like how this one has the Ipod ready feature.

http://www.sonicelectronix.com/item_...ar+SD4MU.html#

I think they are pretty slick.
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  #19  
Old 06-01-2007
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I'll echo what everyone else has said about Crutchfield. I had to replace my stock HU, and I bought a JVC from them. Came with everything I needed.. Had it wired up and installed very quickly..
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  #20  
Old 06-01-2007
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+1 on the pioneer, love mine
only downfall about the super easy install of a cd player in a ranger-its that much easier to have it stolen, but its a chance you take
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  #21  
Old 06-18-2007
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I've had 2 Pioneers and had bad experiences both times. The first one, parts started falling off and the second one, all the panel lights quit. I know most guys here have had great experience with Pioneer, but for me it's 2 strikes your out.
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  #22  
Old 06-18-2007
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Last weekend i installed a Sony H/U into a neon in 15 mins, with clean-up. Crutchfield is nice they explain everything to the fullest. They are worth those extra few pennies and that warranty.
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