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2011 Tacoma TRD Sport Double Cab Long Box
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Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have any experience with one of these ( Alpine Electronics of America, Inc. ) The reviews on it are outstanding, and it looks like it's easy to find for significantly cheaper than Alpine's list price.

I've thought about swapping out the stock headunit, but the cost of the JDM kit plus a new headunit is insane and apparently the color of the JDM kit doesn't match the rest of the trim. Some have painted it to match, but it seems to me that paint would be pretty tacky and would never match perfectly. One scratch and you would have to repaint the whole thing. Plus, even if I do that in the future these improvements would still be applicable.

I don't actually mind the stock headunit all that much. It's really not that bad, once you tweak the equalizer it sounds pretty good, just a little lacking in power. The system is bone stock right now--6 original speakers, original headunit, plus the factory subwoofer under the driver's seat.

I think I'd look at mounting this unit under the passenger's seat since I doubt there's enough room anywhere in the dash for it. I'd splice into the four speaker outputs to run to it. Supposedly it can use the 12v lead to the stereo, but I would be hesitant to do that since the factory sub is also pulling off of it. I'd be inclined to either run a new wire or maybe steal from the second DC "cigarette lighter" port.

My main concern is that the speaker outputs are already spliced out of once for the subwoofer feed (with the factory harness). This would basically splice them again after that. It just seems to me that splicing out of that twice is a bad idea--any potential for issues because of that?

The main reason I'm looking at this is because I'm considering replacing the stock speakers. In my experience, stock headunits often struggle to drive aftermarket speakers.

Any input?
 

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2015 2.5i Limited Carbide Gray
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832 Posts
It's not a bad unit, though I wonder if it will provide you with the output that you desire. I would look into a class D amp that will fit in the hatch and give you a decent amount of power while giving you enough channels to power all of the speakers as well as the sub.
 

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2011 Tacoma TRD Sport Double Cab Long Box
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2,893 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
It's not a bad unit, though I wonder if it will provide you with the output that you desire. I would look into a class D amp that will fit in the hatch and give you a decent amount of power while giving you enough channels to power all of the speakers as well as the sub.
Thanks for the feedback. The sub doesn't matter since it has its own amp built in and has its own 12v lead (well, split off the stereo's). I'm primarily concerned with the four door speakers and the two tweeters up front (the tweeters probably require very little power). Given that, I figured 45WPC would be fine for just about any speakers I would ever want. I have no future plans of adding another sub since it would take up precious cargo room.
 

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2013 OB 3.6R Satin White Pearl
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224 Posts
Anyone have any experience with one of these ( Alpine Electronics of America, Inc. ) The reviews on it are outstanding, and it looks like it's easy to find for significantly cheaper than Alpine's list price.

I've thought about swapping out the stock headunit, but the cost of the JDM kit plus a new headunit is insane and apparently the color of the JDM kit doesn't match the rest of the trim. Some have painted it to match, but it seems to me that paint would be pretty tacky and would never match perfectly. One scratch and you would have to repaint the whole thing. Plus, even if I do that in the future these improvements would still be applicable.

I don't actually mind the stock headunit all that much. It's really not that bad, once you tweak the equalizer it sounds pretty good, just a little lacking in power. The system is bone stock right now--6 original speakers, original headunit, plus the factory subwoofer under the driver's seat.

I think I'd look at mounting this unit under the passenger's seat since I doubt there's enough room anywhere in the dash for it. I'd splice into the four speaker outputs to run to it. Supposedly it can use the 12v lead to the stereo, but I would be hesitant to do that since the factory sub is also pulling off of it. I'd be inclined to either run a new wire or maybe steal from the second DC "cigarette lighter" port.

My main concern is that the speaker outputs are already spliced out of once for the subwoofer feed (with the factory harness). This would basically splice them again after that. It just seems to me that splicing out of that twice is a bad idea--any potential for issues because of that?

The main reason I'm looking at this is because I'm considering replacing the stock speakers. In my experience, stock headunits often struggle to drive aftermarket speakers.

Any input?
I purchased one of these a couple weeks ago from Best Buy. Had them install it in my 2013 OB, and they were able to install it in the dash. I am not a do-it-yourselfer. They recommended it to me because I wanted a stock appearance. Also replaced the 4 door speakers with Infinity 6 1/2" 6502ix using Toyota wiring harnesses. They recommended those speakers because the sound can be directed upward which helps since the speakers are mounted low in the doors. It sounds very good and works seamlessly with my Bluetooth also. The techs at Best Buy said they cranked it up to 35 with no distortion, but I can't tolerate the volume above 25. Not sure how it would do with the '08 MY. Good luck!
 

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2011 Tacoma TRD Sport Double Cab Long Box
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2,893 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
I purchased one of these a couple weeks ago from Best Buy. Had them install it in my 2013 OB, and they were able to install it in the dash. I am not a do-it-yourselfer. They recommended it to me because I wanted a stock appearance. Also replaced the 4 door speakers with Infinity 6 1/2" 6502ix using Toyota wiring harnesses. They recommended those speakers because the sound can be directed upward which helps since the speakers are mounted low in the doors. It sounds very good and works seamlessly with my Bluetooth also. The techs at Best Buy said they cranked it up to 35 with no distortion, but I can't tolerate the volume above 25. Not sure how it would do with the '08 MY. Good luck!
I don't get much of any distortion until the volume is very high, but as you go up in volume it tends to "flatten" the sound. Above about 20-30 depending on the source I've lost nearly all the bottom end. I'm not sure if the speakers can handle more (after all, they're pretty cheap looking stock ones), but even if I get better speakers I think I'll run into the same bottleneck. I believe it's 20 WPC stock (80W total for the headunit).

I'm pretty comfortable with stereo/speaker/amp wiring, but my main concern is the taps/splices from the speaker output wires. The backs shouldn't be a problem since they're not spliced at all yet, but the fronts are already spliced out of once for the sub, so I'm wondering if twice could be a problem.

I haven't had the back doors apart yet, but I suspect they're smaller than 6.5" stock, so I think adding 6.5s to the back would improve the sound quality considerably assuming I have power to drive them. I've already soundproofed the front doors with pretty good success. I think I have the potential for a really nice sounding setup with just the stock headunit. Truth be told, as long as you don't go too high in volume it sounds quite good now.
 

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2013 OB 3.6R Satin White Pearl
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224 Posts
I have found this upgrade to be quite satisfactory, and I'm pretty picky about quality of sound. All the ranges come through clearly. I play everything from New Age and Classical to Alternative, Rock, Country, etc. Not into the heavy bass that vibrates windows throughout the neighborhood, so don't know how that would sound. Let us know what you end up with.
 
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