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View Full Version : Alpine "Full-Speed" iPod Deck!




eRondeau
Apr 12, 2006, 10:57 PM
So after two years of being unhappy with various iPod FM modulators and car adapters, I finally bit the bullet and bought a brand-new Alpine car stereo head unit. The CDA-9857 is awesome, and fully compatible with any 3G+ iPod. It plugs in directly through the multipin port and basically takes over the iPod. It's very cool -- a little Alpine logo even appears on the iPod display! This unit has a 3-line text display and the volume control knob doubles as the song selector spinner. And yes, you can select the next song without interrupting the song that's playing. They're brand-new, reasonably priced, and apparently very much in demand. So if you're looking for the "right" way to put your iPod on wheels, this is the only way to go!

http://www.alpine-usa.com/en/products/product.php?model=CDA-9857
http://www.alpine-usa.com/images/products/images/cda-9857.jpg



NicP
Apr 13, 2006, 01:06 AM
cool, so this is significanlty better than the shoddy ipod support previous models had?

Is it easy and quick to change playlists and tracks?

How is the bluetooth support?

seabass069
Apr 13, 2006, 01:39 AM
I just installed this head unit yesterday. It works great. The only thing I would change is an easier way to scroll through all the songs and artists. It's not the fastest scrolling in the world. It would be nice to be able to have a couple starting points. It gets old having to start over at the beginning of your music. You have to scroll through all the artists just to get to the songs that start with "M". Its tough when your driving. Otherwise definitely worth it. You can also add XM or Sirius to the head unit. I have XM and my 30g iPod hooked up at the same time. It's great!!

NicP
Apr 13, 2006, 02:03 AM
I just installed this head unit yesterday. It works great. The only thing I would change is an easier way to scroll through all the songs and artists. It's not the fastest scrolling in the world. It would be nice to be able to have a couple starting points. It gets old having to start over at the beginning of your music. You have to scroll through all the artists just to get to the songs that start with "M". Its tough when your driving. Otherwise definitely worth it. You can also add XM or Sirius to the head unit. I have XM and my 30g iPod hooked up at the same time. It's great!!


Did you try pressing numbers 1 through 6? I think that gives you more scrolling starting points, not entirely sure i just skimmed some parts of the manual online.

eRondeau
Apr 13, 2006, 02:49 AM
...It would be nice to be able to have a couple starting points. It gets old having to start over at the beginning of your music. You have to scroll through all the artists just to get to the songs that start with "M". Its tough when your driving. Otherwise definitely worth it. You can also add XM or Sirius to the head unit. I have XM and my 30g iPod hooked up at the same time. It's great!!

When you're in any iPod track listing mode, you can just press one of the six radio tuner buttons to jump ahead in the track listing. Each button takes you 1/6th of the way through your total tracks in that list. So if you had 300 songs in your playlist, tuner button #2 would take you to 50, #3 to 100, #4 to 150, #5 to 200, #6 to 250, and #1 back to the top. You can then scrub forwards or backwards thru the tracks. It's instantaneous.

Edit: Oops, you beat me to it, NicP! Bonus points!

apunkrockmonk
Apr 14, 2006, 07:06 AM
$400 isn't really reasonably priced. You could buy any pioneer deck and a $30 aux in adapter and have the same sound quality. You just have to control the iPod yourself.

tobefirst
Apr 14, 2006, 08:08 AM
I just thought I'd add that I had the 9856 (one model down) installed a couple weeks ago and I am LOVING it! It is so great to have all my music with me in the car, and have a way to contol it through the head unit. I spent a bit more than I had originally planned (along with installing 4 new speakers), but I have had no buyer's remorse. It is truly a great system.

I was wondering if there was a way to scroll through the songs faster, too. I'll have to check to see if the preset buttons work on my model! That would make this head unit perfect!

GoCubsGo
Apr 14, 2006, 08:35 AM
$400 isn't really reasonably priced. You could buy any pioneer deck and a $30 aux in adapter and have the same sound quality. You just have to control the iPod yourself.
I agree that $400 USD isn't as reasonable as one would think. Not to mention if you don't intend on keeping your car or perhaps you lease then $400 to fit a stereo to that car and then having to re-fit it to another car (which is also about $60-$100 depending upon where you go) is just silly. I'll stick with my $110 aux adaptor or my $70 reinstall of my sony head unit (which is like 4 months old anyway) and control my ipod via remote. :) I don't get the three lines of text on the unit, but then again I should be driving and not reading.

Thanks for the tip anyway, it's a slick looking unit.

bousozoku
Apr 14, 2006, 09:12 AM
The one thing I've been wondering is if the display and iPod controller support Asian languages. I've got a current Alpine head unit that plays my mp3 discs and I get a lot of names like 1.mp3 or 12.mp3 because it doesn't handle the Japanese characters.

alywa
Apr 14, 2006, 09:47 AM
$400 isn't really reasonably priced. You could buy any pioneer deck and a $30 aux in adapter and have the same sound quality. You just have to control the iPod yourself.

True. You will also have a mess of wires for linking the iPod to the Aux input, plus another to charge via the cig. lighter plug. Plus, no song / artist information on the head unit... plus squiting at the iPod screen in poor lighting situations, while driving. Remember, most of us are "mac people"... aesthetics matter.

I went with the second generation Alpine head unit, and I coldn't be happier. This is a case where you get what you pay for.

-alywa

joshwest
Apr 14, 2006, 10:48 AM
the griffin tune dock is the best car solution hands down.

twoodcc
Apr 14, 2006, 12:01 PM
seems cool, maybe when i save up some money ....

bousozoku
Apr 14, 2006, 12:12 PM
the griffin tune dock is the best car solution hands down.

I looked on Griffin's web site for that and there is nothing with that name. I take it that it's a FM transmitter and charger. How can an FM transmitter be the best solution since FM encoding/decoding ruins stereo separation, one of the things at which digital music excels.

jwa276
Apr 14, 2006, 01:31 PM
I looked on Griffin's web site for that and there is nothing with that name. I take it that it's a FM transmitter and charger. How can an FM transmitter be the best solution since FM encoding/decoding ruins stereo separation, one of the things at which digital music excels.

Yeah, no joke. A couple of my friends have the transmitters and the sound quality suuucks compared to a CD. Not only is the sound quality worse, you have to search for a frequency that isn't used by any existing radio stations around you. If you ask me, a physical connection to the iPod is just the best solution until apple gives us a bluetooth iPod for wireless digital audio.

...Analog audio... *shudders*

I recently installed the iPod2Car unit in my 05 xA (I was upset because the new xA's can be ordered stock with an iPod connection). Anyway, if you've never heard of the iPod2Car, it plugs into the back of your stock reciever unit and into the digital port on the bottom of the iPod. If your stock head unit is already up to your standards, this thing is great because it will allow you to use the track up/down buttons to control the iPod and it will charge your iPod from the point when you turn the car on to an hour after you turn the car off. I just ran the cable to my glovebox, so it looks like my car is still completely stock on the inside (I go to ohio state so I have to be careful not to get ripped off). Plus, a passenger can still control the iPod while it's still plugged in. It doesn't lock the iPod or anything while you are listening to it.

The only downside is that you can't see the track name on your OEM head unit's display, but it will give you a track number at least (just like the bmw's iPod reciever from what I hear).

rjgonzales
Apr 14, 2006, 01:42 PM
It's very cool -- a little Alpine logo even appears on the iPod display!

A feature I could live without. I'll buy when Alpine lets us have the option to use the headunit AND the iPod's controls.

Timepass
Apr 14, 2006, 01:52 PM
I keep hoping for some head unit that let me fold down the face plate and just put the ipod in there. Alone with still being able to play data CD/DVD (I would like the Data DVD part as over the CD. And have the ipod put in there.)
I like the cleaner look of not having any extra wires around.

Now I do want ot know how it hooks up to the ipod. Because I might be intersted in it if I can hook it up by wiring stuff be hind the dash to like the glove caparment or to the storage console on my dash (I have a let extra cover storage on the top of my dash built into the sentra).

I like the cleaner look of not having extra wires around. It part of the reason I planning on getting an apator for my radar dector to hard wire it into my car so I dont wire is out of sight. I like keeping the clean look in my car. Any extra stuff I put in there after market I like to wire in and keep it looking clean. Switchs are in good locations and dont look out of place. At a glance I like my car to look like it was done by a pro and not a bunch of aftermarket home done work. I hate the rice look a lot of people have on there car. I like to keep it clean and non rice look.

apunkrockmonk
Apr 15, 2006, 05:24 PM
True. You will also have a mess of wires for linking the iPod to the Aux input, plus another to charge via the cig. lighter plug. Plus, no song / artist information on the head unit... plus squiting at the iPod screen in poor lighting situations, while driving. Remember, most of us are "mac people"... aesthetics matter.

I went with the second generation Alpine head unit, and I coldn't be happier. This is a case where you get what you pay for.

-alywa

I'm a "mac person" but I'm also a college student. After sinking in $2000 on my Macbook Pro, $400 on my iPod (I own an $800 car to put things into perspective) and thousands on tuition, I don't have $400 more to get a stereo that can do what my $100 stereo already does perfectly. There is only one cable that comes out of my dashboard and goes into my iPod. To each his own I guess.

g4pismo
Apr 15, 2006, 05:42 PM
for the record, I got mine @ HiFi buys for 349.99. I upgraded from last years model and am quite happy with this one..

Sammis89
Apr 15, 2006, 06:29 PM
I honestly still use a cassette adaptor, and it works really well, especially whe n i wanna bring it into other peoples cars and they dont have an ipod adaptor at all. I think that it is the best bang for your buck. I got it for 16 bucks, and the sound quality is pretty good.

yg17
Apr 15, 2006, 07:15 PM
True. You will also have a mess of wires for linking the iPod to the Aux input, plus another to charge via the cig. lighter plug. Plus, no song / artist information on the head unit... plus squiting at the iPod screen in poor lighting situations, while driving. Remember, most of us are "mac people"... aesthetics matter.

I went with the second generation Alpine head unit, and I coldn't be happier. This is a case where you get what you pay for.

-alywa


I went with the AUX route with my Pioneer 6700MP because from what I've heard, Pioneer's iPod adapter is absolute crap. The Alpine does look nice indeed, but I absolutely love my Pioneer unit and if I upgrade soon, it would most likely be to another Pioneer. I don't use my iPod in the car often (Usually listening to Sirius) so I'm not going to spend the money on a new Alpine unit just for the iPod.

NicP
Apr 16, 2006, 06:12 AM
for the record, I got mine @ HiFi buys for 349.99. I upgraded from last years model and am quite happy with this one..

Its cheaper than US$300 from some people on ebay i dunno where people are getting $US400 from

apunkrockmonk
Apr 16, 2006, 12:48 PM
Its cheaper than US$300 from some people on ebay i dunno where people are getting $US400 from

I got the $400 price from the link provded in the first post.

Mustafa
Apr 16, 2006, 03:36 PM
I've had a Clarion head unit and iPod adaptor put into my MX-5 (Miata). The six station preset buttons give access to playlists. Button 1 is for all tracks, 2-6 are for playlists that have to be named clarion2, 3, 4, etc. in iTunes. You can play on shuffle or scroll through artists, albums, tracks etc. just like on the iPod itself. It's a little distracting while driving, though, so best to leave it on shuffle.

The iPod sits out of sight in the glove box, and charges while it's plugged in and the ignition is on.

I've also had a DAB (digital radio in Europe) module fitted, which works much better than I expected.

The unit has a single CD drawer, but I never use it -- CD's - so 20th century!

Overall I'm very satisfied with my Clarion experience -- sounds great, even with the top down.

SpookTheHamster
Apr 16, 2006, 05:12 PM
I've got one of the Alpine iPod units in my car, but I still plug my iPod in to the aux. input, it's easier for me to reach where my iPod sits in my car than it is to mess with the stupid buttons on the front of the unit.

I work for a car audio store, and we've got a wide selection of iPod compatible units, but out of them all my favourite is the Harmon/Kardon drive+play because it completely replicates the iPod's controls and display, it's just like using an iPod.

NicP
Apr 16, 2006, 05:32 PM
I've got one of the Alpine iPod units in my car, but I still plug my iPod in to the aux. input, it's easier for me to reach where my iPod sits in my car than it is to mess with the stupid buttons on the front of the unit.

I work for a car audio store, and we've got a wide selection of iPod compatible units, but out of them all my favourite is the Harmon/Kardon drive+play because it completely replicates the iPod's controls and display, it's just like using an iPod.

Which headunit? is it a "Full-Speed" one?