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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
HI everyone! I've just been mulling over a new head unit, since I'm quite tired of my Alpine CDA-9887 and its lack of support for USB without a third party adaptor. I'm quite sick of everything third party, that Alpine offers, and i'm no longer of the mind to support this money minded company. I've decided to sell my Alpine CDA-9887 and get a new head unit.
Now I'd need a couple of things in the new head unit, they are:
1. FLAC support over USB {my 9887 allows one to play ALAC's from the ipod. I dont want that. i want to use the DAC of the head unit and not the Wolfson DAC of the iPod. In fact I want the ipod to just function like a hard drive for my music. Processing from the iPod is not what I need}
2. USB & iPod integration
3. TIME ALIGNMENT
4. 24bit D/A Burr Brown DAC
5. Option to go 2-way active (3-way is a long way off for me)
6. Sound quality must be on par or better than the 9887. No compromises here.

thats it. this is what i need. Bluetooth: Good if its present. Not of paramount importance, though.
I want to spend not more than $400. and i have the Kenwood Exclelon KDC-X991 in mind. But i really dont know if it does FLAC. if it doesn't, its going out of the window.
 

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I want to spend not more than $400
and thats the killer

unless u get a really good find on a used HU, probly not looking good... but then again im in Australia, so i dont know how valuable $400 is for you.
i know my Clarion HX-D2 (DRZ9255 for you overseas guys) with the ipod adapter does exactly all the things you want (dont think USB though, and except for FLAC, not too sure on that one). youre probably looking for a higher end Alpine unit, but im not familiar with their product line. im sure sombody whose an Alpine buff will chime in
 

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Not gonna happen...its like the guy in the other thread that wanted all these functions T/A etc in a external unit...for under 200...not gonna happen.
 

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You're basically looking at a carputer with an expensive soundcard and audiomulch or something to do the processing. I understand your frustration. After using the 7949, the newer alpine decks seem like they're designed by people who just want to f you over in every way possible.
 

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HI everyone! I've just been mulling over a new head unit, since I'm quite tired of my Alpine CDA-9887 and its lack of support for USB without a third party adaptor. I'm quite sick of everything third party, that Alpine offers, and i'm no longer of the mind to support this money minded company. I've decided to sell my Alpine CDA-9887 and get a new head unit.
Now I'd need a couple of things in the new head unit, they are:
1. FLAC support over USB {my 9887 allows one to play ALAC's from the ipod. I dont want that. i want to use the DAC of the head unit and not the Wolfson DAC of the iPod. In fact I want the ipod to just function like a hard drive for my music. Processing from the iPod is not what I need}
2. USB & iPod integration
3. TIME ALIGNMENT
4. 24bit D/A Burr Brown DAC
5. Option to go 2-way active (3-way is a long way off for me)
6. Sound quality must be on par or better than the 9887. No compromises here.

thats it. this is what i need. Bluetooth: Good if its present. Not of paramount importance, though.
I want to spend not more than $400. and i have the Kenwood Exclelon KDC-X991 in mind. But i really dont know if it does FLAC. if it doesn't, its going out of the window.
I know Pioneer supports WAV, but not FLAC. I converted all of my FLAC files to WAV and it will control USB and iPod, and higher end models have Burr Brown. The x991 you are looking at doesn't support WAV, so if you are ok with WAV in place of FLAC, Pioneer would be a better bet.
 

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perfection isn't cheap and like someone suggested, the drz9255/hx-d2 comes pretty close. i'd beg or borrow the extra $200 (usd?) or whatever for one.
 

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The x991 you are looking at doesn't support WAV, so if you are ok with WAV in place of FLAC, Pioneer would be a better bet.
^ Not correct - the X991 does support .wav - see here. I run an X791, and I'm running a hard drive with all my CD's ripped to .wav. Works great, and Kenwood's folder navigation is much better than most other brands. The styling is a different story though :(.
 

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^ Not correct - the X991 does support .wav - see here. I run an X791, and I'm running a hard drive with all my CD's ripped to .wav. Works great, and Kenwood's folder navigation is much better than most other brands. The styling is a different story though :(.
Interesting, I stand corrected. The newer model doesn't, from what I saw, and other older models like 591/691 don't. Why would they be so selective? Sorry for misleading, thanks for catching it.
 

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I don't get the obsession with burr brown DACs. They make so many... who knows if the ones in the Pioneer or Alpine decks are the junk lower-models. There are many AD etc. DACs that have much better specs than those lower end burr brown DACs.
 

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I don't know of any HU that supports FLAC. I wish there were some options, but it doesn't look like there are.

One option is to use one of the X series Alpines. It has no CD player built in, but it does take the digital signal off of the iPod and uses its own DAC. Alpine also mentions that the IVA-W505 does this, but some people on this forum claim that it does not.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
its not an obsession. its just that all higher end HU's come with burr brown DAC's. hence the urge to get something high end.
im zeroing in on the KDC-X991. anyone has any experience with the x991?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I don't know of any HU that supports FLAC. I wish there were some options, but it doesn't look like there are.

One option is to use one of the X series Alpines. It has no CD player built in, but it does take the digital signal off of the iPod and uses its own DAC. Alpine also mentions that the IVA-W505 does this, but some people on this forum claim that it does not.
again, the ida-x100 doesnt have time alignment, and again, I dont want to spend so much on the Imprint processor just for time alignment. i'd rather spend that good money on a higher end head unit with a CD player, since I have a lot of cds.
 

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I don't know of any HU that supports FLAC. I wish there were some options, but it doesn't look like there are.

One option is to use one of the X series Alpines. It has no CD player built in, but it does take the digital signal off of the iPod and uses its own DAC. Alpine also mentions that the IVA-W505 does this, but some people on this forum claim that it does not.
all you need to bypass the DAC on the ipod is this little doohicky and just hook it into the aux input of your head unit. :)
opps, forgot the link......http://www.redwineaudio.com/iMod.html
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
kenwood is out with the new x993, the successor to the x991. trouble is, on the website they have listed it with exactly the same specs as the x693. the x991 is available at $400. now the trouble is, the 7200MKII is available at the same price! the dilemma continues.
my question to everyone is:
1. is the 7200 warmer sounding than the 9887?
2. is the x991 better sounding than the 9887 and the 7200, considering its got ODD (offset dual DACs)
3. the only feature that tilts me towards the 7200 over the x991 is the built in bluetooth. someone who's had an extended listen to both units should comment.

one LAST question: is all this effort and money worth it? i need to spend about $200 extra after selling the 9887. will disposing the 9887 yield better results????? or am i making a grave error selling the 9887 for a kenwood?!?
 

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No idea on the FLAC support, but the Clarion DXZ785USB meets all of the other needs. It can be had for under $200, although likely not from an authorized retailer.

I am pleased with the way mine sounds. Take it for what it is worth.
 

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We are a Kenwood and Eclipse dealer and I use an Eclipse in my own car. I do like the X991's display a lot better than the Eclipse, but that's it.
 
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