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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So after 250k miles my factory radio has been losing the lcd screen. Well it’s time for an upgrade.
I’ve been looking at some Sony and Panasonic units but I have NO idea what’s out there. I’ve never bought one. I replaced my door speakers last year with some fair kickers and sound deadened my door shells.


all I know is this:

I want car play
I’d like 55w per channel
Pre outs for a powered sub
Touch screen
Retain steering controls retain sat radio

haha that’s all
‘And get something nice for you, Clark’

I’ve been seeing prices around 5-700$. But would like to stay around 500$

what have you been pleased with?
 

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if you want 55W RMS per channel you need a dedicated amplifier, no radio will deliver that. you will get 55 watts RMS total for the 4 channels combined , or maybe 55 watts peak per channel, but not 55 W RMS / channel, which is the only number anyone should care about when discussing watts in an audio system. The best you will do is about 10-15 watts per speaker from a standard head unit.

A head unit producing 55 watts RMS per speaker will draw about 15 amps to do so under ideal circumstances at 14.4 volts (18 amps with the engine off) which is far more than any head unit i am aware of is designed to handle. This is assuming the radio is 100% efficient internally which is not true, realistically you are probably closer to 20 amps to get that kind of output. There may be a couple odd balls with built in amps that meet this requirement, but its far from the norm.

Its been a few years since i was an installer but the pioneer NEX series was the best performing bang for your buck head unit the last time i installed and it had been so for a few years already when i stopped installing so that is probably still a safe place to start looking. depending on the radio you wanted in that series you could get them in that price range. They will do everything you asked and a whole lot more, but you will need additional parts to complete the install (for any aftermarket radio) such as wiring harness, antenna adapter and dash kit. I might be missing it but i don't see your trucks year posted. These parts will be between 200 - 400 depending on the year of your truck. If you have an old truck before 05 then a double din (the taller touch screen style radios) wont fit without replacing the whole dash trim and doing some modifications behind the radio, but with the right install kit this radio will fit in any 2500/3500 duramax
 

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2003 GMC 2500HD 4x4 Banks Super Scoop, Banks Rear Dif Cover, Mechman 320A alternator, S&B fuel tank
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I replaced my factory head unit with an
Alpine iLX-W650. I've been pretty happy with it.
The install kit with everything you need and retains your steering wheel controls is another $88.
My only beef is that playing stuff off of a thumb drive can be annoying, the directory system isn't great. But, if you plan on running android audio I suspect you wouldn't care.
Also, if you go the Crutchfield route they have an option to have them assemble the harness for like $20. Totally worth it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys, I have been looking at that pioneer unit. I mis spoke before. I didn’t mean 55w per speaker. But ya at least 14w rms per.
 

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Thanks guys, I have been looking at that pioneer unit. I mis spoke before. I didn’t mean 55w per speaker. But ya at least 14w rms per.
i figured, but it was worth clarifying because there is a TON of misinformation between peak and rms power in the industry and between brands. Dont get too hung up on the speaker power. The quality of the head unit is far more important. The difference between 10 and 15 watts RMS cant be heard by a normal human ear.

a 3 db increase is generally considered to be the smallest increase a human can detect, it takes double the previous power to increase the current noise level by 3 db, so to hear a 3 db difference from 10 watts would require 20 watts. To double the heard output of the speaker you need 10X the power, so to double the output of the speaker at 10 watts, you would need 100 watts of power supplied to the same speaker.

this should not matter since you are looking at quality brand names, but just to throw this in there for anyone else that comes along, make sure the power rating on the box of whatever you are buying is tested at a voltage under or equal to 16V (some competition alternators are wound to produce 16V for audio competition use). There are some manufacturers out there that will run their hardware at large voltages (ive heard of up to 60V) in order to make the peak values on the box. Obviously our trucks dont run on 60V so you would never get this performance or even anything remotely close to it in reality. The big 3 (boss, pyle and dual) come to mind but theres plenty more that embellish their values.
 
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