1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Car Hifi - DIY or "get a man in"?

Discussion in 'Motors' started by DoubleCheese, 13 Oct 2009.

  1. DoubleCheese

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,483

    Right, just trying work out and justify the cost of installing a new head unit in my Focus. The factory fit Ford CD-Radio is diabolical and has to go!
    The replacement has to have good sound quality, be iPod compatible and preferably have Bluetooth.
    I've had Alpine units in the past and I've seen is an Alpine CDE-103BT in my local car hi-fi shop. It'll cost about £270 fitted (includes a blankng plate) or £330 fitted with steering column stalk controls.

    Now, the unit is about £160-170 to buy from most e-tailers. Is the £270 fitted a fair price and how easy is it to do myself? Plug and Play?

    Also, can anyone tell me the difference between the CDE 103BT and the 104BTi?
     
  2. cm1179

    Mobster

    Joined: 30 Sep 2009

    Posts: 3,627

    never fitted a double din but i can't see it being much different a conventional fit, only the blanking plate could cause a problem if it's a poor fit or getting the original cage out (if you have to) and putting the new one in. you will need your factory radio keys to release the oem unit and the new unit wil simply plug into the factory plug, including all your speaker connections. you may have to buy a plug adaptor, these are a bout a fiver from motor stores. cabling could be a bit itght when you push your new unit in but other than it, it could only take 5 minutes.
    DIY
     
  3. stockhausen

    Capodecina

    Joined: 30 Jul 2006

    Posts: 11,654

    I would be inclined only to "get a man in" if you happen to be female - otherwise, I suggest that you shouldn't post details here :D
     
  4. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    It is very very easy. You'll need a facia adaptor and harness adaptor. However you'll find that you'll have to upgrade the speakers too.
     
  5. DoubleCheese

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,483

    Thats my part of my point really. £270 for the unit and fitting vs £170 for the unit and DIY, when it it'll only take them 15 min or so. Unless its a bugger to do due to wiring in the iPod and BT mic?
     
  6. DoubleCheese

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,483

    Why upgrade the speakers too?
     
  7. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    Very poor quality which will be accentuated by the better quality headunit. Does the iPod connection come from the rear of the unit? Bluetooth will be easy as the receiver itself is in the unit. Does your car currently have steering wheel controls?
     
  8. Sin_Chase

    Capodecina

    Joined: 13 Jan 2004

    Posts: 20,555

    Just chuck a new HU in and see how the stock speakers will hold out, the HU upgrade alone will improve sound quality but dumping a small amount of money on some decent speakers will improve it even more. The stock speakers are not "very poor". They are not audiophile stellar but they are good enough for average joe and his daily commute.

    Very easy to do, the only trouble you might have is finding where to mount the BT Mic and how to route the cable there.
     
  9. Howard

    Capodecina

    Joined: 12 Jul 2007

    Posts: 16,077

    Location: South East

    Other way round IME. Poor quality amplifier stages in OE head units I've found. Aftermarket head units are usually far better quality.
     
  10. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    My HU blew the stock speakers :p
     
  11. jamoor

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 22 Jun 2005

    Posts: 8,821

    Location: Nottinghamshire

    How about buy for £170 and pay someone £20 odd to fit it?

    I have used car audio places in the past, they do this all day every day so it's a piece of cake to them and they charged £30 an hour.
     
  12. jamoor

    Sgarrista

    Joined: 22 Jun 2005

    Posts: 8,821

    Location: Nottinghamshire

    If you're in Sheffield area I can let you know who does it.
     
  13. Marco_Nasty

    Gangster

    Joined: 27 Nov 2008

    Posts: 102

    fit it yourself, £100 to fit a stereo is a rip off, and you can go to Halfords to get the fitting plate to make it look neat for like £5, I have always fitted them and even if your unsure go into a place like Halfords and talk to them, advise is free and all that
     
  14. DoubleCheese

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Jun 2005

    Posts: 1,483

    hmm..the plot thickens! After researching the differences between the two models I called the shop back. The CDE 103BT is comes without the iPod lead and the CDE 104BTi has it included.
    The £270 I was quoted was for the 103BT without the iPod lead! So its now £305 fitted,for either of the units.

    Will visit Halfords as the have one in stock, get it fitted tomorrow and save some £'s ;)
     
  15. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    I doubt Halfords will have anything half decent.
     
  16. ethos

    Mobster

    Joined: 5 May 2003

    Posts: 4,515

    Location: UK

    User error :o
     
  17. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    Yeah, it was probably an OSI layer 8 issue :(
     
  18. Gav

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 21 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,378

    Location: Republic of Scotland


    5 quid for a double din fitting plate? from halfords? you obviously don't know the price of things.

    harness adaptor - £10-£15
    Fascia adaptor - £35-40
    antenna adaptor - £5

    total
    £50-60 for parts alone.
     
  19. Will

    Mobster

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 4,432

    Location: Halesowen

    £270 fitted for a CDE-103BT is just mad, halfords do it for £190 or so and online it can be had for far less!

    What year Focus is it? A mk1 would only need £30 or so worth of bits (Autoleads PC2-08-4 and the facia, no aerial adapter required for a modern Alpine unit) so if you can get the unit cheaply you can see theres a fair lot of profit on the price you've been quoted. Up to £60 labour just to fit it, for what is only a simple 15 minute install.

    Assuming its a mk1, even buying everything from halfords and getting them to fit it would be cheaper than what you've been quoted :)

    A Mk2 focus is a slightly more involved fit and may require costlier bits than I've mentioned...Ford quadlock lead is around £20 or so where as the older type costs just £14 or less online.
     
    Last edited: 13 Oct 2009
  20. Janesy B

    Caporegime

    Joined: 19 Apr 2008

    Posts: 25,518

    What year is the car, will it even take double din? The HU is a single din in the op?