What head units have you guys upgraded to?

beaups

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No way in hell I'm spending $1500 on a radio. I plan on upgrading to one of these android tablets. They range anywhere from $100-$400, because you can choose how much performance you want (ram, hard drive, etc). I'm not worried about reliability, because those off brand android tablets have lasted me YEARS with everyday use and this just happens to be for a car.

Plus it has an adapter to retain your factory backup camera.
All of the options on the market have their pros and cons and everyone's priorities and budgets are different. For me, I wanted to retain all of the factory integration. Those android tablets don't (amongst many other drawbacks) and there are very few products on the market that do. Best I can tell, the short list is Stinger, Alpine ($3K yikes), and Insane Audio.





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OlderSpice

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I've finally had a chance to successfully use my new HEIGH10 today and, wow! I haven't had a good deep dive into all the setting, and I have yet to install the GPS antenna or external mic but, this very quality unit and the cohesion with factory has been pretty seamless.

I'll have to mirror @beaups in a lot of his points, this is such a dramatic change in both size/quality/interface.

In regards to install:

- Step 0 should definitely be removing your appropriate top. I have a hard top and don't have any sort of lift so I'm putting off installing the GPS antenna until I find a solution.

- Removing trim panels, you're bound to lose some of those orange clips. The first time I removed the uConnect bezel, all 6 clips stayed on the bezel. Around the 4th or 5th time, I lost the top left clip. It's so incredibly tight behind the dash, it fell further and further into they abyss as I reached for it. Again today, I lost the clip in the same spot. 2 down into the abyss....
I'll be ordering a set of these clips as they look similar to the ones that Stinger ships with the HEIGH10

- When mounting the CH4A-JW18 module, put the zip tie heads towards the front because the brain mounts against the back and won't fit otherwise

- Space behind the dash is tight... and I mean tiiight. Try to use as few of the harnesses as necessary. I opted to not use the pre-amp out harness which includes the Aux In from the media port (do people still pass the aux chord with bluetooth anymore?). You don't need to use the Chime Speaker unless you have any of the Safety packages that use warning sounds.

- Like said, a majority of your time will be spent with trying to meticulously tuck the modules and harnesses behind the dash with enough Tetris skills as to not pinch any of the wires. What worked for me was to tuck the RPA-HD1 module up and to the left above the vent ducting, the main harness plug flat against the back and towards the upper left, and then tuck the remaining smaller wires back and down around the frame. The brain is shallow but, the dash only provides a couple inches behind it between the air ducts that cut thru the corners.

In regards to use:

- The screen is massive! It integrates perfectly into the dash with the included kit and could have come from the factory that way. It looks like there's overhang over the vents but it's cut out and molded well where it wouldn't at all impede with air flow.

- I have the amplified Alpine speakers/sub and with this unit and the 15 band EQ, the sound out of these originally muddled sounding speakers is far cleaner and.... alive? If that makes sense. With the factory 3 band EQ, the sub seemed to drown everything out or not at all. The sub now seems to be well cut off with a LPF and not muddled, and the other 8 speakers reproduce lows and mids well for a great soft tone. There's a lack of highs reproduction but, I think that's a limitation of the factory speakers more than the source.

- The screen takes a firm touch to be responsive, that might be due to the factory film being left on. I'll be looking into screen protection options before removing the film. This could change.

- The Compass and Clock on the Gauge Cluster no longer work, I'm hoping that's due to the GPS antenna not yet hooked up. Both of these were pulled from the factory uConnect.

- Double tapping the Mute button will no longer bring up the camera but, it's not difficult to get there manually so it isn't much concern. I believe there are ways to map a shortcut as well if wanted.

Again this is only after first impressions, I am absolutely happy with the product and recommend it to anyone who's looking for even just a larger screen for the real estate! The added benefit for a quality product, one that is well supported (Tech Support has already helped with record response times), every CAN bus feature available to you, RCA outs for aftermarket amps without the need for a Line Out Converter.

To reiterate, this is a large screen that just stretches interfaces from CarPlay or Android Auto. If a 10" screen isn't what you need, the option to get an ELEV8 (8" screen) and a PAC SRK-JW18EH will get you all the same parts needed at a lesser price point.

20201022_135132.jpg
 

alleycat

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Did any of you guys that have installed the Stinger kit get the optional Nav maps SD card? I'm curious how well this works for you. Being an "old" guy, the attraction to this kit (10 inch) is the Nav maps and backup cam (don't have the sight for small print, lol).
 

OlderSpice

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Did any of you guys that have installed the Stinger kit get the optional Nav maps SD card? I'm curious how well this works for you. Being an "old" guy, the attraction to this kit (10 inch) is the Nav maps and backup cam (don't have the sight for small print, lol).
Like you, I'm interested in finding out experience before spending the $150 on the additional navigation.

I've had great success with Google Maps on Android Auto, but it's all been within cell range. My understanding for added benefit is having functional navigation when outside of cell service.

CarPlay has benefit of GAIA navigation maps, I'm probably gonna hold out for it to come over to Android - for off road navigation
 

JL4Todd

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I've finally had a chance to successfully use my new HEIGH10 today and, wow! I haven't had a good deep dive into all the setting, and I have yet to install the GPS antenna or external mic but, this very quality unit and the cohesion with factory has been pretty seamless.

I'll have to mirror @beaups in a lot of his points, this is such a dramatic change in both size/quality/interface.

In regards to install:

- Step 0 should definitely be removing your appropriate top. I have a hard top and don't have any sort of lift so I'm putting off installing the GPS antenna until I find a solution.

- Removing trim panels, you're bound to lose some of those orange clips. The first time I removed the uConnect bezel, all 6 clips stayed on the bezel. Around the 4th or 5th time, I lost the top left clip. It's so incredibly tight behind the dash, it fell further and further into they abyss as I reached for it. Again today, I lost the clip in the same spot. 2 down into the abyss....
I'll be ordering a set of these clips as they look similar to the ones that Stinger ships with the HEIGH10

- When mounting the CH4A-JW18 module, put the zip tie heads towards the front because the brain mounts against the back and won't fit otherwise

- Space behind the dash is tight... and I mean tiiight. Try to use as few of the harnesses as necessary. I opted to not use the pre-amp out harness which includes the Aux In from the media port (do people still pass the aux chord with bluetooth anymore?). You don't need to use the Chime Speaker unless you have any of the Safety packages that use warning sounds.

- Like said, a majority of your time will be spent with trying to meticulously tuck the modules and harnesses behind the dash with enough Tetris skills as to not pinch any of the wires. What worked for me was to tuck the RPA-HD1 module up and to the left above the vent ducting, the main harness plug flat against the back and towards the upper left, and then tuck the remaining smaller wires back and down around the frame. The brain is shallow but, the dash only provides a couple inches behind it between the air ducts that cut thru the corners.

In regards to use:

- The screen is massive! It integrates perfectly into the dash with the included kit and could have come from the factory that way. It looks like there's overhang over the vents but it's cut out and molded well where it wouldn't at all impede with air flow.

- I have the amplified Alpine speakers/sub and with this unit and the 15 band EQ, the sound out of these originally muddled sounding speakers is far cleaner and.... alive? If that makes sense. With the factory 3 band EQ, the sub seemed to drown everything out or not at all. The sub now seems to be well cut off with a LPF and not muddled, and the other 8 speakers reproduce lows and mids well for a great soft tone. There's a lack of highs reproduction but, I think that's a limitation of the factory speakers more than the source.

- The screen takes a firm touch to be responsive, that might be due to the factory film being left on. I'll be looking into screen protection options before removing the film. This could change.

- The Compass and Clock on the Gauge Cluster no longer work, I'm hoping that's due to the GPS antenna not yet hooked up. Both of these were pulled from the factory uConnect.

- Double tapping the Mute button will no longer bring up the camera but, it's not difficult to get there manually so it isn't much concern. I believe there are ways to map a shortcut as well if wanted.

Again this is only after first impressions, I am absolutely happy with the product and recommend it to anyone who's looking for even just a larger screen for the real estate! The added benefit for a quality product, one that is well supported (Tech Support has already helped with record response times), every CAN bus feature available to you, RCA outs for aftermarket amps without the need for a Line Out Converter.

To reiterate, this is a large screen that just stretches interfaces from CarPlay or Android Auto. If a 10" screen isn't what you need, the option to get an ELEV8 (8" screen) and a PAC SRK-JW18EH will get you all the same parts needed at a lesser price point.

20201022_135132.jpg
 

JL4Todd

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What’s it like while driving at night? Does it DIM enough (automatically) so there’s not a glare or a distraction?

Great review - thanks for the details!
 

KevinD

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So, does the Elev8 offer all the integration features that the Heigh10 has?
I'm not a fan of the 10" screen hanging on the dash.
 
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Thanks for the review! I've been back and forth between the Heigh10 and the insane audio unit. This is certainly helping
awesome review. Thank you for the info. My first thought was to save up for it and purchase through Best Buy, then have them instal it for free. However, I am a little concerned with them trying this.

on a side note, kinda, I just swapped out the upper dash speakers with Hertz DCX 87.3s. They were easy to get in, with the clip adapter and resolved the missing “high” tones you refer to. I am a little different than most and like my music “bright” as they say. (Lots of treble)

I have not added any amps yet. Obviously waiting to get a new head unit. This is likely the direction I will go. But $1500 is gonna take a while.
 

Black Jeep Convertible

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I've got this sitting in my shopping cart
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005001664796234.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604643849296.png


https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000236111859.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604643898402.png


The CC3 is their latest head unit, they also have a bunch of attachments you can purchase like a dash cam that uses the headunit for storage and viewing, can also use as a trail cam.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32893007974.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604644082238.png

1604644137199.png


Seems pretty game changing to me. Just waiting on funds before pulling the trigger. Sick and tired of this stuttering 5" pos radio

I wish an american company would just make android tablet radios with fabricated bezels for every single model car instead of our limited selection of $1.5k headunits
 
Last edited:

MichaelAnthony

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well I was definitely going to dump the money on a stinger just so I can add more cameras.... I wheel to much by myself...... but the website leaves a lot to be desired and way too much email and message traffic just to get a newer interface? just seems to me if they wanted to sell more I think they would improve on their website and beef up the customer service some..... yea so I wouldn't mind buying the Alpine at least I know they have always had great customer service...
 

OlderSpice

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What’s it like while driving at night? Does it DIM enough (automatically) so there’s not a glare or a distraction?

Great review - thanks for the details!
The default brightness was WAYYYYY too bright for my liking. I'm one to turn gauge clusters and head units down to the lowest setting for night driving. Luckily this unit not only adjusts with our dimmer switch, it has it's own brightness setting. I dropped that down to... 3/10 I think and it's been very satisfactory during both day and night driving without having to adjust anything while driving.

So, does the Elev8 offer all the integration features that the Heigh10 has?
I'm not a fan of the 10" screen hanging on the dash.
My understanding is that the only difference between the ELEV8 and HEIGH10 is the screen size. They have the same brain and integration modules so everything you get with one, you'll have on the other. Only difference is there's no bundle for the ELEV8, but buying separately will net you the same exact parts.
awesome review. Thank you for the info. My first thought was to save up for it and purchase through Best Buy, then have them instal it for free. However, I am a little concerned with them trying this.

on a side note, kinda, I just swapped out the upper dash speakers with Hertz DCX 87.3s. They were easy to get in, with the clip adapter and resolved the missing “high” tones you refer to. I am a little different than most and like my music “bright” as they say. (Lots of treble)

I have not added any amps yet. Obviously waiting to get a new head unit. This is likely the direction I will go. But $1500 is gonna take a while.
The most expensive part of the install is time invested, it really is just plug and play. There's no replacement for peace of mind if you trust the installer but, I have no doubt that anyone with basic knowledge should breeze thru an install.

I'm actually gonna pick up a set of the Kenwood KFC-X3C's for the same effect, before I fully dive into a component set and amp install! Hopefully it'll round out the sound profile well
 

mtnbiker73

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Like you, I'm interested in finding out experience before spending the $150 on the additional navigation.

I've had great success with Google Maps on Android Auto, but it's all been within cell range. My understanding for added benefit is having functional navigation when outside of cell service.

CarPlay has benefit of GAIA navigation maps, I'm probably gonna hold out for it to come over to Android - for off road navigation
You can always download offline maps as well. I do this when I'm planning offroad trips.
 

Goin2drt

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I've finally had a chance to successfully use my new HEIGH10 today and, wow! I haven't had a good deep dive into all the setting, and I have yet to install the GPS antenna or external mic but, this very quality unit and the cohesion with factory has been pretty seamless.

I'll have to mirror @beaups in a lot of his points, this is such a dramatic change in both size/quality/interface.

In regards to install:

- Step 0 should definitely be removing your appropriate top. I have a hard top and don't have any sort of lift so I'm putting off installing the GPS antenna until I find a solution.

- Removing trim panels, you're bound to lose some of those orange clips. The first time I removed the uConnect bezel, all 6 clips stayed on the bezel. Around the 4th or 5th time, I lost the top left clip. It's so incredibly tight behind the dash, it fell further and further into they abyss as I reached for it. Again today, I lost the clip in the same spot. 2 down into the abyss....
I'll be ordering a set of these clips as they look similar to the ones that Stinger ships with the HEIGH10

- When mounting the CH4A-JW18 module, put the zip tie heads towards the front because the brain mounts against the back and won't fit otherwise

- Space behind the dash is tight... and I mean tiiight. Try to use as few of the harnesses as necessary. I opted to not use the pre-amp out harness which includes the Aux In from the media port (do people still pass the aux chord with bluetooth anymore?). You don't need to use the Chime Speaker unless you have any of the Safety packages that use warning sounds.

- Like said, a majority of your time will be spent with trying to meticulously tuck the modules and harnesses behind the dash with enough Tetris skills as to not pinch any of the wires. What worked for me was to tuck the RPA-HD1 module up and to the left above the vent ducting, the main harness plug flat against the back and towards the upper left, and then tuck the remaining smaller wires back and down around the frame. The brain is shallow but, the dash only provides a couple inches behind it between the air ducts that cut thru the corners.

In regards to use:

- The screen is massive! It integrates perfectly into the dash with the included kit and could have come from the factory that way. It looks like there's overhang over the vents but it's cut out and molded well where it wouldn't at all impede with air flow.

- I have the amplified Alpine speakers/sub and with this unit and the 15 band EQ, the sound out of these originally muddled sounding speakers is far cleaner and.... alive? If that makes sense. With the factory 3 band EQ, the sub seemed to drown everything out or not at all. The sub now seems to be well cut off with a LPF and not muddled, and the other 8 speakers reproduce lows and mids well for a great soft tone. There's a lack of highs reproduction but, I think that's a limitation of the factory speakers more than the source.

- The screen takes a firm touch to be responsive, that might be due to the factory film being left on. I'll be looking into screen protection options before removing the film. This could change.

- The Compass and Clock on the Gauge Cluster no longer work, I'm hoping that's due to the GPS antenna not yet hooked up. Both of these were pulled from the factory uConnect.

- Double tapping the Mute button will no longer bring up the camera but, it's not difficult to get there manually so it isn't much concern. I believe there are ways to map a shortcut as well if wanted.

Again this is only after first impressions, I am absolutely happy with the product and recommend it to anyone who's looking for even just a larger screen for the real estate! The added benefit for a quality product, one that is well supported (Tech Support has already helped with record response times), every CAN bus feature available to you, RCA outs for aftermarket amps without the need for a Line Out Converter.

To reiterate, this is a large screen that just stretches interfaces from CarPlay or Android Auto. If a 10" screen isn't what you need, the option to get an ELEV8 (8" screen) and a PAC SRK-JW18EH will get you all the same parts needed at a lesser price point.

20201022_135132.jpg
Any side view pics of this?
 

wtm

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I've got this sitting in my shopping cart
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/1005001664796234.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604643849296.png


https://www.aliexpress.com/item/4000236111859.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604643898402.png


The CC3 is their latest head unit, they also have a bunch of attachments you can purchase like a dash cam that uses the headunit for storage and viewing, can also use as a trail cam.
https://www.aliexpress.com/item/32893007974.html?spm=a2g0o.cart.0.0.11363c008zgiGe&mp=1
1604644082238.png

1604644137199.png


Seems pretty game changing to me. Just waiting on funds before pulling the trigger. Sick and tired of this stuttering 5" pos radio

I wish an american company would just make android tablet radios with fabricated bezels for every single model car instead of our limited selection of $1.5k headunits
I wonder if the CC3 has solved the 'not powering down when doors are off' (possible) issue?
 

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