what make of HU & why ?

which one do you prefer ?

  • Pioneer

    Votes: 27 24.8%
  • Kenwood

    Votes: 12 11.0%
  • Alpine

    Votes: 30 27.5%
  • Clarion

    Votes: 5 4.6%
  • Sony

    Votes: 21 19.3%
  • JVC

    Votes: 5 4.6%
  • Panasonic

    Votes: 3 2.8%
  • Other

    Votes: 6 5.5%

  • Total voters


I like Alpine, have one in the almera and also in my accord, excellent sound, the alpines replaced the Kenwood which I sold on.

scott b

Where there's Pepsi, there's DEFINATELY Scott B
Kenwood had it for over 4 years now had it repaired twice (ribon cable) find it easy to use plus me mp3 changer is kenwwod
I've recently changed my HU after upgrading my wife's Dub with my Sony MEX-5DI AM/FM/MW/Mp3 Memory Stick CD Player
and instead using this Sony MEX-R5 AM/FM/MW/Mp3 DVD Player on the top tray
with the Xplod XVM-F65WL Wireless TFT Screen on the dashboard
and Sony MDX-CA790X Mini Disc Player on the bottom tray
Darchitect said:
I've recently changed my HU after upgrading my wife's Dub with my Sony MEX-5DI AM/FM/MW/Mp3 Memory Stick CD Player

Ive got this one too - nice sounding player. Although I find you have to clean it quite alot as dust gets inside it and it wont play discs. :rolleyes:


AOC Moderator
because, as the almeras were built in Japan, and shipped here, they came with no headunit fitted, most garages fitted the sony that we all had with the joystick as they had a deal with sony for them, some unfranchised dealers didnt get this deal and had to fit other ones though.
thats also the reason why some radios are fitted behind the console and why some are slid in from the front, just depends who fitted it

nissan normally use clarion to make there headunits, not sure if they still do with the qash qow etc
Got a FLI Audio HU in the Primera, shit sandwich. The sound is actually pretty good, but the build quality is pish. The speakers in the Primera are crap as well though, so when you speed up they don't really stand a chance against the wind and road noise.

Had a Panasonic in the Almera which was built brilliantly, but didn't have sound that good, and the Almera's standard speakers were crap as well.

My Daihatsu had a standard Pioneer HU and some no-name speaker setup that was amazingly good though for such a crap budget car. It was tinny and noisy so was quite a fight for the stereo, but those cheap speakers could stand up to the HU and the noise and still sound pretty good!

The Peugeot had some un-named HU (probably a Clarion) but was fitted with JBL sspeakers and amps as a factory upgrade, it sounded fantastic as well especially considering it used 6x9s rather than a sub.
Ive had Pioneer, Sony, Kenwood, Alpine and AudioBahn... All have pro's and con's over one another, but now i stick to ALPINE, bang for buck you cant beat it, you get enough toys without getting aload of stuff which tbh dont really use...
Now i have a full ALPINE install, sounds peachy!
Used to have a JVC headunit which was the bomb until i got introduced to the iPod then it had to go and i'm now using a Kenwood Headunit... Can't remember the model number but it's shit hot and the sound quality's immense!

Just need to find component speakers that'll fit for the front and i'll be sorted - got bargain basement Ministry Of Sound 6x9's the now which do the job but will be looking for better now i've got a Mutant X Sub + Amp (courtesy of Halfrauds)


It's the exact same one as Wraith's headunit - great wee unit!
I've now got a Kenwood KDC-W6537U headunit connected-up to a Maxtor One-Touch III mini 160GB USB hard-drive hidden in the flip-top cubby-hole on the dash.

Takes a minute or so for the HU to index the 400-odd albums on the drive when you switch it on but being able to fit up to 2200 albums on the drive makes up for that very minor niggle.

Navigating between songs is easy enough (no option to search by genre or artist but I may just not have found it yet) and the joystick control thingie is a bit fiddly but it sounds good, looks great and has a good level of features.

It occasionally has a problem when I put in a CD with a weird copy protection scheme but usually plays OK after a couple of attempts.

As I'm really pushing it's USB feature (it's really designed for small USB memory sticks and MP3 players that can act as USB memory sticks, not hard-drives) I'm well happy with how well it works.

Need to upgrade the original speakers, though, and replace the cheap all-in-one 400w amp/sub combo in the boot as they are letting the side down with muddy-ish sound.

One gotcha is that the HU expects the USB stick/drive/mp3player to use the older but widespread and fairly standard FAT32 file system but Windows will only allow you to create FAT32 partitions of up to 30GB (Bill Gates wants everyone to use his NTFS file system and pay him for the privilege).
To format the full drive as FAT32 you need to use an operating system that has not been deliberately crippled (I used Linux) or find some Windows software that gets around that limitation.


Just chillin'
I am surprised that head unit worked with the hard drive my mate had one of them and the head unit USB was not supplying enough voltage to the hard drive (the USB is made for a flash drive that uses a lot less power a hard drive spins thats why it should not work but fair play if it worked though)

Paul D GTi said:
Im getting this one gona order it on friday Pioneer all the way!!! :D http://www.almeraownersclub.com/newforums/attachment.php?attachmentid=1069&stc=1
I brought one of these last year and it cost me 200 (from US) in about December time probably a stupid price but they were retailing at about 350-400 last year and they were recon units not brand new had 3 of these in the shop and they sold all 3 within a 3 weeks

I brought it because of the 6 volt pre out (so your amps do not need to work as hard) also the sound quality on these are good as well.
Darren198712 said:
I am surprised that head unit worked with the hard drive my mate had one of them and the head unit USB was not supplying enough voltage to the hard drive
Pure luck really, I knew the HU could supply 500 milli-amps on the USB port but had no idea of the power requirement of the various harddrives available, just went for the one I guessed would have the lowest power requirements. Not had any problems with this one so maybe your mate should check his HU's USB power output and grab one of those drives if it's 500 milli-amp or more. Also a lot of USB harddrives come with a Y-cable that can plug into a second USB port if one is not supplying enough power - you can get USB power adaptors that plug into 12v cigarette lighter sockets. They are supposed to be for charging phones, MP3 players etc but no reason why they couldn't supply the secondary power feed to a harddrive.


Alpine for me :D I think its the best sound for the music i like to listen too. I have had the same head unit now for the last 4 years and it has never gone wrong even though it has been through 4 cars now :) I'm not a fan of the boom boom cupboard box music and i'm not really up together with all the ice lingo, but I have a full alpine system, 6x9's, amp, sub, hu and for metal, punk,ska and stuff like that and of course the great Pink Floyd its great :D
got an alpine headunit and think its great but theres so many pointless features, the face tilting seemed pointless enough but you also get a remote which aswell as being able to change station, volume etc with you can also use to tilt the face, cant possibly imagine why the hell you would want to tilt the face of a radio with a remote but it amuses blondes :lol: few other things that seem completely pointless aswell but it works great and is a lot better than the old sony one i had so cant complain, does everything i need and then alot more.
i must say alpine all the way. for one they are japanese lol. for two ive had mine now for pretty much my driving life.(5yrs) also i have up graded with the mp3 6 cd changer. one convertor and it worked straight away. no problems. as for other makes sony pioneer etc, they are simular to the clifford. full of gadgets and gismos but all for show mainly. alpine does exactly what it says on the tin.
I had in my N16 a SQ setup. I used as HU PIONEER DEX-P90RS with DEQ-P90 and I was very satisfied. The ////A F1 Status would be better, but the price is double. So I voted for PIO :)

I've just bought a Clarion dxz588 rusb for my n16 p1 sport...why?-simply because they were the only company that replied to my email regarding being able to use my steering wheel buttons(sad i know-but i've got used to using them-it's such a chore reaching a foot to the left to turn it up) I know they supplied the original headunit which may influence things,but someone in the tech department rang me and went through all i needed to do the job,and rang again to make sure it all worked ok-i'm still waiting for any kind of reply from the 3 others I emailed....not sure its the best unit in the world but at least they want to help.
well when i were on a budget and just got me car 2yrsago, i bought a cheapy head unit for like £80-90 its made by

INPHASE which i know do competition stuff ,but i have to say its fooking good and clear power full aswel with 4x60amps works perfectly with standerd front and rear FLI speakers
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