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Old 01-13-2021, 08:19 PM   #1
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 175238
Join Date: Mar 2008
Chapter/Region: South East
Location: In my house. :)
2004 WRX

Default What's a Good Bluetooth Head Unit for 2005 Forester?

My wife wants a Bluetooth/CD Player head unit in her 2005 Forester. What's a good unit to put in her car? Any suggestions?
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Old 01-15-2021, 07:47 PM   #2
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sony makes inexpensive units with carplay and all that jazz
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Old 01-16-2021, 07:22 PM   #3
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If you are looking for the best sound quality... Kenwood Excelon is the way to go. Those head units have the best DACs, the best "tuneability", and have really nice internal amplifiers. Plenty of really clean power output.

If you're looking for bang-for-your-buck, and are less concerned with supreme sound quality, go with a Sony Xplode unit. Still really good head units, but a little cheaper.

I have never been happy with a Pioneer, had lots of issues in the past... and disappointing customer service.

Hope this helps, I've installed several (very HIFI) systems in my Subarus... Not to be pretentious.
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Old 01-16-2021, 08:14 PM   #4
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Location: TN
2007 Outback Sport
Urban Gray


Ease of use? Sony XAV-AX1000 has CarPlay, great UI, front USB and Aux, and a volume knob. Looks pretty low key/stock and great sound, decent power too. Less tuning options than the excelon I had before but having a graphic EQ was way easier.
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Old 01-24-2021, 09:05 PM   #5
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Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Seattle, WA
2009 STi
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Honestly though, paying for the best DACs or higher version of Bluetooth or something will net a minimal amount of audio performance. Our cars don't have very good sound insulation and the road noise tends to drown out sound anyways, especially with our frameless doors - unless you're parked or in slow moving traffic all the time.

This is coming from someone who has spent to the time to dynamat their doors and put closed cell foam on top of it. Haven't done the wheel wells or trunk area but I would say skip the top of the line stuff and go with an older unit or mid-tier Kenwood. Any head unit in the last 5 years, maybe even 10 years, should have Bluetooth.

I personally really like having CarPlay and Android Auto capabilities, that's more of a newer feature. Plug your phone in and get Maps navigation on your head unit, and even control/listen to Spotify on it. Super handy.
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Old 03-02-2021, 02:07 PM   #6
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I'd recommend JVC, they've always had a big presence in car audio since the 80's, and continue to make decent entry level units. Added bonus: since they merged, if you decide to get a Kenwood unit, you don't need to change the wiring harness either!
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Old 03-09-2021, 09:20 PM   #7
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I put a pioneer AVH-2300NEX into my wife's 13 crosstrek a while back and she and I love it still. We are both old school and wanted android auto as well as a CD player. Just updated the firmware today.
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